Despite being one of the most densely populated cities in the world, Hong Kong is also packed with lush countryside, rolling hills, and breathtaking scenery. Our great city is home to 300km of hiking trails, many of which are a short 30-minute ride from Central, and with the temperature at a comfortable low, now is the perfect time to explore them and lap up the stunning views. So grab your trainers and hit one of these popular trails.
1. The Hong Kong Trail (Dragon’s Back)
Comprising of eight different sections, that when combined become one of the most popular hiking routes in the city, the Hong Kong Trail is a 50km route that traverses through hills, beaches, a reservoir, and parkland. Each individual section presents its own unique challenges and provides hikers with a glimpse into some of Hong Kong’s most isolated and beautiful areas. One of the most popular sections is the Dragon’s Back, voted the world’s best urban trek and usually the first undertaken by newbies. Few hikers complete the full Hong Kong Trail in one go, partly due to the fact that there are no camping facilities along the route.
How to get there: Walk from MTR Shau Kei Wan Station Exit A to Shau Kei Wan Bus Terminus. Take bus 9 or the minibus with the sign ‘Shek O’ next to the bus terminus. Alight at To Tei Wan, Shek O Road. Follow the sign post to begin the Dragon’s Back hike.
2. The Wilson Trail
With 63km of its 78km length set solely in parkland, the Wilson Trail brings together eight of Hong Kong’s country parks. Starting out at Tai Tam Park on Hong Kong Island, this trail moves in a northerly direction through the New Territories before coming to an end at Pat Sin Leng Country Park. The full hike comprises of seven different sections, each showcasing some of the best scenery Hong Kong has to offer. Click here for more information on the different sections.
How to get there: There is no MTR that goes out to Tai Tam Country Park, so you’ll have to take a bus or taxi to get here. Take bus number 14 from Sai Wan Ho MTR station, or bus number 6 from Central MTR station.
3. The MacLehose Trail
Another predominantly country park-based trek is the MacLehose Trail, Hong Kong’s longest hiking route – best known for the annual Oxfam Trailwalker event, which sees more than 4,000 people take on the 100km challenge. This hiking trail, which traverses through the New Territories and Kowloon, has it all: coastlines, parks, rugged peaks, valleys, and even the odd glimpse of rural living. It runs from east to west, starting in some of Hong Kong’s densest countryside, before moving higher in elevation at the central peaks, finally ending in the western valleys and reservoirs. There are 10 sections in total, ranging from 5km to 16km in length.
How to get there: Click here to find the 10 starting points and directions for the MacLehose Trail.
4. The Lantau Trail
This 12-section, 70km trail is confined to Lantau Island in Hong Kong’s New Territories. The route is circular, starting and ending at Mui Wo. Each section varies in length, the smallest being just 2.5km, and the longest 10.5km. In addition to the spectacular scenery of the surrounding coastline and bay area, and the Tian Tan Buddha at Ngong Ping, the Lantau Trail also features the majestic Sunset Peak, one of the highest points of all Hong Kong treks. This trail has excellent facilities, and the sections are easily navigated and well sign posted.
How to get there: Click here to find the 12 sections and directions for the Lantau Trail.
5. Tai Tam to Stanley Trail
This popular but short hike begins on Tai Tam Gap Road by Wong Nai Chung Reservoir Park. Head towards the bottom of the reservoir and take the steps up as the trail takes you behind Repulse Bay towards Deepwater Bay. As you overlook the Deepwater Bay apartment towers, continue on until the trail starts to meander upwards. Conquer the 363m peak and take in the amazing views before ascending towards Stanley. It’s worth every drop of sweat! You may want to take a short break before heading down as your legs will without a doubt start to shake like jelly during the 1,000 steps. Don’t worry, as there’s a reward in the form of delicious beer and pub grub waiting for you at the end!
How to get there: Click here for transport information.