Header image courtesy of @9bphos_ (via Instagram)
Away from Hong Kong’s central business districts, West New Territories is one of the lesser-trodden parts of Hong Kong, but its natural and architectural beauty is by no means lacking. In fact, the blend of the area’s calm and laid-back vibes with its scenic countryside landscapes and charming hipster spots makes this side of the city a prime location for pleasant photo-taking expeditions. Plus, you won’t have to constantly stress over inadvertent photo bombers ruining your otherwise-perfect shot. If you’re ready to capture some epic snaps and go on an adventure, grab your cameras and hit up these seven most Instagrammable spots in West New Territories!
Housing a slew of artisan shops, vintage boutiques, and unique exhibitions and galleries, this textile factory-turned-cultural complex is as great of a place to spend a relaxing afternoon soaking up culture and heritage as it is to capture photogenic shots for the ‘gram.
Within the complex, visible testaments to the former cotton mill’s past—including the original green staircases, peeling paint on the walls, and exposed beams—are retained and simultaneously contrasted with the chic, modern aesthetic of the refurbished space.
We are not surprised that the result is a lively and inviting atmosphere that oozes historic charm. Apart from the spacious atrium that presents a symmetrically stunning interior design, the picturesque murals lining the building’s exterior and giant wall-mounted art installation on the rooftop also serve as fantastic backdrops for enviable Insta-shots.
The Mills, 45 Pak Tin Par Street, Tsuen Wan | (+852) 3979 2300
Just a short walk away from Tsing Yi MTR station is an urban oasis of towering trees, pebbled paths, and ornamental lakes that offer visitors a slice of peace and tranquillity—as well as endless photo opportunities.
Enjoy a nice picnic or a leisurely stroll amid lush greenery in Tsing Yi Park, then head to the beautiful lake teeming with water lilies in the centre of the park for a mini-photoshoot. The European-style pavilions and serene waterfall adorning the lake’s surroundings make it seem as though you’ve been whisked away on a European getaway. Come during autumn and spice up your photos with vibrant red foliage!
Tsing Yi Park, 60 Tsing King Road, Tsing Yi | (+852) 2435 0533
Nothing says a mighty fine time like frolicking through a field of sunflowers. If you are a flower fanatic, you will fall head over heels in love with the sweet floral aromas and the sea of bright sunny flowers at Yuen Long’s San Tin Farm. For $50, you can enter the field and get up-close and personal with the beaming sunflowers, which grow up to 200 centimetres tall during the summer months!
The joy of immersing yourself in the flowers’ enchanting presence will bring a wide smile to your face as you flaunt your best poses for the camera and snap away to your heart’s content. The striking splashes of yellow in your photos will for sure rack up all the likes on Instagram.
San Tin Farm, Shek Wu Wai, Yuen Long | (+852) 9252 4348
If even the Queen of Canto-pop Sammi Cheung (鄭秀文) chose Subway NS220 to film her music video “Eight Kilometers” (八公里), then it’s no doubt a spot worth visiting. This pedestrian tunnel linking Tai Leng Village and central Yuen Long resembles a time tunnel you would find in a sci-fi movie, with its corrugated arches and green-painted interior giving off a futuristic feel.
For an Insta-worthy shot, position yourself in the middle of the track, obscuring most of the entrance on the other side so that it creates the illusion of an infinitely long tunnel. And if there’s no one around, do a sprint through the passageway and recreate the iconic moment in Sammi’s MV!
Subway NS220, between Tai Kei Leng Road and Long Ho Road, Yuen Long
Breath-taking sunset views await you at Ha Pak Nai, and it’s as good of a reason as any to make the trek to Yuen Long. Flanked by mountain ranges, Ha Pak Nai is a six-kilometre stretch of coastline made up of shallow beach and wetlands, mangroves, and fish ponds.
During golden hour, the shallow, shimmering mudflats reflect the warm, ombre hues of the setting sun in perfect clarity, as if tailor-made for photography. In fact, you’ll often come across budding photographers vying to get that perfect shot! With the jaw-dropping natural beauty of the area and many different angles and vantage points to take advantage of, it’ll be hard for you to put away your camera at all.
Ha Pak Nai, Lau Fau Shan, Yuen Long
Due to its secluded location in the westernmost corner of New Territories, Butterfly Beach is rarely explored by tourists. Ask the residents of Tuen Mun, however, and they know that this hidden beach touts some of the best sunset-watching opportunities around. The swaying palm trees and rocky outcrops make for the perfect backdrop to any photo and set the mood for a relaxing sunset stroll along either the promenade or on the water’s edge.
And if you get there early, there’s also much to do nearby to fill your hours before the sun disappears into the horizon. Head to the abutting Butterfly Park for a family barbecue, a game of volleyball or basketball in the sports courts, or a little wandering in the peaceful verdant garden.
Butterfly Beach, Area 45, Lung Mun Road, Tuen Mun | (+852) 2404 8656
Equally as stunning as the panoramic views from the top of this seven-storey pagoda is the towering brick-red structure itself! Surrounded by natural woodland trees and sprawling grassy lawns, the Aviary Pagoda stands 30 metres tall on a hilltop at the centre of Yuen Long Park and boasts a traditional Chinese architectural style.
You can start by exploring the open structure on the bottom level and make your way to the top, where you can get some exceptional bird’s-eye snaps of Yuen Long, Tin Shui Wai, and beyond. While you’re ascending the steps, don’t forget to look up, as the spiralling hexagonal staircase makes an intriguing geometric shot as well.
Aviary Pagoda, 1 Town Park Road North, Yuen Long, New Territories | (+852) 2473 4959