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Guide to Hong Kong Outdoors

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Thoughts of Hong Kong tend to conjure images of bustling streets and towering skyscrapers, but the city has a "wild side" too. In addition to any number of water activities, there are trails to hike, wetlands to explore, and geological wonders at which to marvel.

Good for
  • History Buff
  • Nature Lover
  • Peace and Quiet Seeker
  • Thrifty Traveller
  • Like a Local

7 Places

10 City Tips

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Map

7 Places

Tai Tam Waterworks Heritage Trail

Hiking Trails

East Dam of High Island Reservoir

Bodies of Water, Dams

Tap Mun Island

Islands

Hoi Ha Wan Marine Park

Parks

Luk Keng

Other Outdoor Activities

Tai Tung Shan

Mountains

Ma On Shan Promenade

Piers & Boardwalks

Crazydor's City Tips

  • The MTR is an easy public transit system that covers major Hong Kong districts. Day passes, which offer unlimited travel, are available.
  • Hong Kong has strict environmental hygiene laws, and there are heavy fines for littering or spitting.
  • Buses are another easy mode of transit, covering all areas. Fares are by distance traveled - be sure to have exact change.
  • Minibuses (maxicabs) can be helpful to reach smaller villages. Green minibuses run on fixed routes and fixed fares; red minibuses don't have fixed routes or set fares.
  • Octopus cards are available at transit stations and 7-11s. You can load them up with money to use on public transit, at convenience stores, supermarkets, vending machines, etc.
  • Green taxis only service the New Territories, and blue taxis only service Lantau Island. Red taxis operate almost everywhere, and are the most expensive.
  • All goods other than tobacco and alcohol are tax-free in Hong Kong.
  • When enjoying the outdoors in summer, be mindful of the heat. Hong Kong can get very hot, which can make certain exercise difficult.
  • Always bring water and sunscreen along with you.
  • Mosquitoes are prevalent in Hong Kong, so be sure to bring along some bug spray.
  • Tai Tam Waterworks Heritage Trail
    Hiking Trails
    Crazydor Says:

    The Tai Tam Waterworks Heritage Trail is a 5km (just over 3 miles) trail that meanders through Tai Tam Country Park, the largest country park on Hong Kong Island. Its name ("Tai Tam" translates as "big pools") celebrates not only the park's four reservoirs, but also the 21 historic waterworks that were named protected monuments in 2009, just before the trail opened. The dams, bridges, aqueducts, and valve houses are not only beautiful but impressive evidence of 19th-century engineering feats. They blend harmoniously with the mountains, water, and lush greenery to create a special, stunning haven right in the heart of the busy city.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • If you like running, do a half or full marathon here - it's one of the best running routes in Hong Kong!
    • Depending on how quickly you walk, the entire hike takes approximately 2 hours.
    • Bring along lunch to enjoy at one of the many vistas or picnic spots along the way.
    • Catch a glimpse of all of Hong Kong from Jardine's Lookout - a popular spot in Tai Tam Country Park.
    • To reach the park, take bus #14 or bus #6.
    • Enter at the junction of Tai Tam Rd and Tai Tam Reservoir Rd, or at the Wong Nai Chung Gap.
    Plan to stay:
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #226 of 847 things to do in Hong Kong
    • Challenging in parts 07/10/2018
    • Relaxing and calm place 15/09/2018
    • Tai Tam Waterworks Heritage Trail
    Address:
    Tim Tam Road
    Hong Kong
    China
    Other:
  • East Dam of High Island Reservoir
    Bodies of Water, Dams
    Crazydor Says:

    Known as the “Back Garden” of Hong Kong, Sai Kung East Country Park is one of the city's must-go places, and High Island Reservoir is one of the top attractions within it. Built in the 1970s, High Island is Hong Kong's youngest and largest reservoir. In 2009, the area became part of the Hong Kong Global Geopark of China thanks to its unique geological features. Millions of years ago - while lava, rock debris, and volcanic ash were cooling and contracting here - a violent crustal movement occurred suddenly, creating twists and folds in the rock which resulted in a series of undulating columns. Many say these resemble a sort of rock waterfall.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Thrill Seeker
    • Senior
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • No public transport goes direct to the area - take a taxi to East Dam for the quickest route.
    • If you have time, take a bus to Pak Tam Chung, and then a scenic walk (2-3 hours) here through Sai Kung (walk along Tai Mong Tsai Rd, then on Man Yee Rd until you reach East Dam).
    • To leave, either take a taxi or the NR29 minibus back to Sai Kung Town, where you can get public transit to anywhere else.
    • Sai Wan and Ham Tin Village are good places to find eateries where you can re-energize.
    • Try not to go too late. In the evenings, everyone wants to leave so you'll have to wait for a taxi.
    • This is a great place to watch the sunrise.
    Plan to stay:
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #123 of 847 things to do in Hong Kong
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • great views 09/12/2018
    • East Dam 11/11/2018
    • East Dam of High Island Reservoir
    Address:
    Sai Kung
    Hong Kong
    China
    Other:
  • Tap Mun Island
    Islands
    Crazydor Says:

    Hong Kong consists of 263 islands - the most popular among them being Lamma Island and Cheung Chau. Comparably less developed and lesser known, Tap Mun is a tiny outlying island - nicknamed "Grass Island" by the locals for its lush green hills. Here cattle graze, day-trippers fly kites, and campers set up their tents on beautiful hilltop campsites. Formerly a bustling fishing community, today the island is home to fewer than 100 residents. A few temples and shrines dot the island, and there are a handful of tiny shops selling everything from dried fish to kites.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Hidden Gems
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Ferries depart from Wong Shek Pier in Sai Kung or Ma Liu Shui Pier in Tai Po.
    • Look out for popular geological attractions like Tap Mun Cave and the nearby Layered Rock.
    • New Hon Kee restaurant is popular with locals and tourists alike. Try their signature dish: fried rice and sea urchin.
    Plan to stay:
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #133 of 847 things to do in Hong Kong
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Really nice Place 22/04/2018
    • Love It! 20/02/2018
    • Tap Mun Island
    Address:
    Northeast of Tolo Harbour
    Hong Kong
    China
    Other:
  • Hoi Ha Wan Marine Park
    Parks
    See more photos
    Crazydor Says:

    Concealed - and lesser known than Sai Kung's famous Silverstrand Beach, Tai Long Bay, and Clear Water Bay - Hoi Ha Wan (translated as "Bay Beneath the Sea") is a protected Marine Park, home to 60 types of hard coral and 120 species of coral fish. It's great for snorkeling and said to be one of Hong Kong's best kayaking spots.

    Good for
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Thrill Seeker
    • Senior
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • While enjoying your time in the Marine Park, please help to protect our lovely environment by following the Marine Park's Visitors Code and Code for SCUBA divers and skin divers.
    • From Sai Kung Town, first take green minibus #7 to Hoi Ha Tsuen, then walk or take a taxi to the Marine Park.
    • It's a 6km walk from Hoi Ha Village. Look out for the old temple and historic lime kilns on the way.
    • Wan Hoi Store on the beach rents out snorkels, masks and kayaks.
    Plan to stay:
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #299 of 847 things to do in Hong Kong
    • Amazing place for teaching kids about our lovely marine lives in HK 27/08/2018
    • Hidden gem, Hoi Ha Wan 05/07/2018
    • Hoi Ha Wan Marine Park
    Address:
    Hoi Ha Wan
    Hong Kong
    China
  • Luk Keng
    Other Outdoor Activities
    Crazydor Says:

    Thanks to a sub-tropical monsoon climate, one of the world’s most important natural habitats – the wetland - flourishes in Hong Kong. While there are many wetlands around, one of my favorites is Luk Keng. Here, the lush mangroves are reflected seamlessly in the placid lake, lush mountains surround you, and the occasional egret stands in quiet contemplation. Everyone knows that Hong Kong is separated from mainland China by just a river, and in Luk Keng you can really feel how close that boundary is, with the concrete jungle of Shen Zhen standing silently on the other side of the peaceful lake. Personally, I really like this contradicting picture; it makes me feel quite philosophical.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Try bringing a yoga mat and do yoga or meditation at the lakeside.
    • Just beyond the mangroves is A Chau, the egret island, which several hundred egrets and herons call home.
    • Be sure to visit Luk Keng village, a quiet hamlet with paddy fields and a fish pond. It's a great place to catch the sunset.
    Plan to stay:
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #70 of 158 Outdoor Activities in Hong Kong
    • Village Lovely BB Restaurant at the Entrance a Place To Avoid 19/02/2018
    • Easy walk along flat coastline 18/12/2016
    • Luk Keng
    Address:
    northeastern part of the New Territories
    Hong Kong
    China
  • Tai Tung Shan
    Mountains
    Crazydor Says:

    Tai Tung Shan is the third highest peak in Hong Kong, standing at a height of 869 metres (2,851 ft). It is also called "Sunset Peak" because it is one of the best locations to watch sunset (or sunrise) in the area. Some very keen amateur photographers will even camp out here to capture the best shots of a clear starry night or sea of clouds below.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Autumn (around October to early December) is the best time to go hiking in Tai Tung Shan.
    Plan to stay:
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #362 of 847 things to do in Hong Kong
    • Lots of Miscanthus 10/12/2018
    • 值得 25/06/2018
    • Tai Tung Shan
    Address:
    Lantau South Country Park
    Hong Kong
    China
  • Ma On Shan Promenade
    Piers & Boardwalks
    See more photos
    Crazydor Says:

    Completed in 2010, Hong Kong's newest waterfront promenade stretches 3km along the shores of Sha Tin Hoi and Tolo Harbor, and features both a jogging track and a bike path. Start your walk at the Ma On Shan Barbecue Area, on bike or on foot, and imagine the life of a miner as you pass through Ma On Shan village - an old miners' settlement - before gazing down the cliffs at Sharp Peak, to admire High Island Reservoir, Kau Sai Chau and Pak Sha Wan marina spread out below.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Some retired miners are still living in the old miners' settlement; don’t be surprised if you see one.
    • Bring along a small magnet and drop it on the floor in Ma On Shan village - you'll see that it attracts minerals!
    Plan to stay:
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #146 of 847 things to do in Hong Kong
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Beautiful seaside and sunset 05/07/2018
    • Most beautiful sea coast 16/05/2018
    • Ma On Shan Promenade
    Address:
    Tolo Harbor
    Hong Kong
    China
    Other:
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