29°C Sunny Periods with A Few Showers
Uniquely HK

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Hong Kong’s Great Outdoors 2021 Spring Edition

The onset of early spring in March means mild temperatures and frequent sunny skies, a perfect time to enjoy the myriad outdoor activities available. It always bears repeating that Hong Kong is one of the greenest metropolises in the world, with over 70 percent of its territory natural and 40 percent of the city's total area set aside as country parks. What makes Hong Kong's outdoors so unique is its sheer diversity, thanks to its 700+ km of coastlines, rugged mountains, islands, varied geological formations and diverse flora. Best of all, most of Hong Kong's great outdoors are only minutes away from the city centre, allowing everyone easy access to enjoy Hong Kong's natural beauty.
So, whatever your pleasure, whether it's a fun hike with stunning views, a relaxed family walk through shaded foliage, a relaxed day trip to an outlying island, or geological exploration of fantastic rock formations, CityLife is pleased to give you our recommendations. Enjoy our great outdoors!
Picturesque reservoirs- Tai Tam Country Park (Tai Tam Reservoir Group of four reservoirs).
Occupying a fifth of Hong Kong Island, Tai Tam Country Park is one of the most scenic in the territory, with fantastic views of the city and the South China Sea, often simultaneously. There are hiking trails throughout the park, including around the four reservoirs . A good route is to start from Hong Kong Parkview, a luxury residential estate at the top of Wong Nai Chung Gap, and walk down to the reservoirs.
This relaxing walk takes you through wooded trees framed by green mountains on all sides. You descend to Tai Tam Reservoir and then reach Tai Tam Tuk Reservoir. Along the way, you can explore architectural, structural, and engineering elements of the four reservoirs within the country park, built over a century ago. These range from dams, arched stone bridges, aqueducts, and valve houses. And you can't beat the scenery, which is just gorgeous. The walk ends at Tai Tam Road where you can easily catch a bus back into town.
How to get there: Take the No. 6 Citybus from Central and get off at the top of Wong Nai Chun Gap Road. Then walk ten minutes up the road to Parkview for the pleasant walk down.
Iconic Sc​​enic Hike - Dragon's Back: The city abounds in hiking trails, most of them located in country parks. The most famous, and certainly one of the most scenic, is the Dragon's Back (Section 8 of the Hong Kong Trail), – a series of mountain ridges on the eastern part of Hong Kong Island from Chai Wan to the Shek O and Big Wave beaches. The hike is rated 'moderate' – suitable for all ages – and once you reach the ridge following a level hike and short ascent , the spectacular view of the South China Sea and the green hills beyond await. The views never disappoint.
How to get there: Take Bus No. 9 from Shau Kei Wan and get off at To Tei Wan; walk up the trail and, in a few minutes, you'll reach the ridge line. After descending to Big Wave Bay, you can choose to walk to Shek O for food and refreshment.
Tranquil Wetlands - Nam San Wai: An important wetland reserve crisscrossing two small rivers, Nam San Wai is as far away as you can imagine be from the hustle bustle of Hong Kong. Popular with birdwatcher, hikers, bicyclists and photographers and romantic couples, Nam San Wai offers unspoiled rustic scenery of mudflats, farms and fishponds, languished rivers, tall reeds and mangroves and tree-lined paths.
Start your journey at the entrance to Nam San Wai Road from the main road either by bicycle or on foot and traverse along the river northwards. Photogenic spots abound along the route. The road turns back southwards at the junction of another river. Keep walking or bicycling either along the road or on the path until you reach the famous Wedding Bridge for your obligatory photoshoot. Keep walking a short distance and you'll come to Hong Kong's only river ferry, a little sampan that carries passengers across a narrow river (maybe 30 metres) for a fee. You may choose to do that and go back to Yuen Long that way or retrace your steps.
How to get there: KMB Bus 76K from Yuen Long MTR Station, getting off at Hong Mu Bridge and walk to Nam Sang Wai Road.
Walk with Monkeys - Kam Shan Country Park: The park located just north of Tsuen Wan is set around four reservoirs, with Kowloon Reservoir the largest. Also close to the city, this park offers something different: monkeys! Dubbed Monkey Hill, it is located at the western Sha Tin District, north of urban Kowloon. Popular with locals and visitors alike, the park is a sanctuary for macaque monkeys, with hundreds roaming around. Besides watching monkeys, the park is rich in flora. Several moderately easy trails provide vistas of the reservoirs and nearby mountains – but it's the monkeys that grab the headlines, and anything else they can reach.
How to get there: Take Kowloon Motor Bus (KMB) 81 from Jordan and get off at the Kowloon Reservoir bus stop on Tai Po Road.
Sleepy Island Village -Peng Chau: Less trodden by tourists than the others, Peng Chau is a small quaint island just off east Lantau, not far from Discovery Bay. A few thousand residents live here known for its unhurried lifestyle and relative isolation. It won 't take you long before you feel the same vibes after you reach the island. There is a heritage trail worth hiking (easy hike) and a modest scamper up to the highest point, Finger Point, rewards you with 360-degrees view of Lantau , Hong Kong Island and South China Sea. You can unwind and enjoy a simple but delicious seafood meal at the local restaurant on the way back.
How to get there: Take the ferry from Central and back -Central Pier Number 5.
Cliffs and old relics - Tung Lung Chau: This pristine island lying just off the Clearwater Bay Peninsula in Sai Kung District is a nice hidden gem. Reachable only on weekends and public holidays, Tung Lung Island is famous for its cliff climbing rocks along its north eastern coastline. There is an old abandoned fort with a camp site nearby. A scenic footpath offers unimpeded views of the sea and the peninsular across. It won't take long before you are disconnected from the hustle bustle of the city just minutes away.
How to get there - Catch the ferry at Sai Wan Ho at the pier inside the Aldrich Bay Typhoon Shelter near the Grand Promenade or at Sam Ka Tsuen Ferry Pier in Lei Yue Mun.
Rural Retreat - Tap Mun (Grass Island): If you want to visit a totally unspoilt island and fishing village, this small island off the Sai Kung Peninsular is out of the way but well worth a visit. Tap Mun's traditional fishing village has kept their way of life still. Here the world slows down considerably. It's an easy an hour walk around the islands. You can see cows still roaming the field and little fishing boats loitering about. There are a few stores and restaurants open. Be sure to try the fried rice with local sea urchin roe.
How get there: Either take a ferry from Ma Liu Shui or take a bus from Sai Kung town to Wong Shek Pier and take a 30-minute kaito ferry ride to the island.
Geological Wonders - Hong Kong UNESCO Global Geopark: Without doubt and proudly Hong Kong's geological crown jewel, the Hong Kong Geopark, located in the northeastern part of Hong Kong, showcases spectacular coastal rock formations and other unique geological features. Grouped under eight areas, the geopark covers two of Hong Kong's major rock formations: Volcanic rocks and sedimentary rocks. The best example of sedimentary shale formation is probably in Tung Ping Chau located in the most north-easterly part of Hong Kong, within swimming distance of Shenzhen, itself a favourite weekend spot for locals .
For viewing truly spectacular volcanic hexagonal columns and basalt columns, exposed by millions of years of relentless erosion from pounding waves, go visit the Geopark's islands in eastern Sai Kung such as Sharp Island, the Ninepin Islands as well as the East Dam area of​​ High Island Reservoir. Please go to http://www.geopark.gov.hk/en_index.htm for details.
Pristine beaches and rock formations -Maclehose Trail Section 2: This hike starting from the East Dam of High Island Reservoir in Sai Kung Country Park affords the best views of Hong Kong's wildest coastline. The East Dam itself is part of the Hong Kong Geopark where you can observe otherworldly hexagonal volcanic rock columns and other rock formations. Several pristine white-sand beaches await, including Long Ke -a secluded beach in a rocky cove, and the four Ham Tin beaches, Hong Kong's closest approximation to a tropical paradise. The rugged coastline traversed by the trail caps a unforgettable hiking experience.
How to get there: Take bus KMB 94 from Sai Kung Twon Bus Terminal and get off at Pak Tam Chung.
Challenging and Spectacular Hike - Sunset Peak, Lantau Island (Lantau Trail Section 1 to 3)
Part of the vaunted Lantau Trail, the hike from Mui Wo to Sunset Peak is a challenging one for the physically fit, featuring steep ascents but offering panoramic views of seas and mountains. Start at Mui Wo and follow the Lantau Trial Section 1 until you reach Nam Shan and a large BBQ site. Past Nam Shan marks the beginning of Section 2, a strenuous trek that takes you up Sunset Peak (869 metres) and its mesmerising view of Lantau Island and the South China Sea. Descend to Pak Kung Au where you can take a bus back to Tung Chung or Mui Wo or continue hiking to Ngong Ping, via another steep ascent of Lantau Peak, the island's tallest mountain at 934 metres, before dropping down to Ngong Ping for a well-deserved rest in the village .
How to get there: Central Ferry Pier No. 6 to Mui Wo; Return by Ngong Ping 360 Cable Car to Tung Chung or Lantau Bus 2 to Mui Wo or Bus 23 to Tung Chung.
Nature Walk - Quarry Bay Tree Walk: This tranquil walk is short but relaxing, and informative for tree lovers. The 1.1 km walk passes through heavily shaded trees comprising a variety of local species plus several war time relics. The walk is easy and suitable for the family. More ambitious hikers can go on to other intersecting trails including Hong Park Country Trail, Sir Ceceil Ride, or Wilson Trail.
How to get there: Start from Mount Parker’s Road at Quarry Bay and walk around 20 minutes to reach the entrance of the Tree Walk.
Heritage Trail - Pinewood Battery, Lung Fu Shan Country Park: Another relaxing and easy hike right above the hustle bustle of Central and Mid-levels is a gem of a walk where Hong Kong's highest fortification was located. The Pinewood Battery which was completed in 1905 played a meaningful part in the Battle of Hong Kong during WWII. Many of the facilities are still in relatively good shape and offers telling reminders of the city's history.
How to get there: Take First World Bus 15 or the Peak Tram to the Peak. Enter Harlech Road which intersect with Hatten Road a few hundred metres down and follow Hatten Road to the site.
Harbourfront Walk -Quarry Bay Promenade to Shau Kee Wan Typhoon Shelter: The beauty and splendour of Victoria Harbour never ceases to amaze. For a thoroughly pleasant and spirit lifting walk, check out the promenade walk stretching from Quarry Bay to Sai Wan Ho, along Quarry Bay Promenade, passing by Sai Wan Ho's waterfront including SOHO East, a strip of watrefron lined with trendy restaurants, and ending at the typhoon shelter at Aldrich Bay, passing joggers, strollers, and Tai Chi practitioners along the way.
How to get there: Enter the promenade from Hoi Yu Street just off Java Road at Quarry Bay.
Expansive Beaches - Pui O Beach and Cheung Sha Beaches: Several expansive beaches line the coastline of southern part of Lantau, including Pui O Beach and the Cheung Sha Beaches (Lower and Upper) which present a long stretch of shallow, smooth sandy beaches perfect for swimming and, yes, clamming. There are restaurants on these beaches catering to visitors. Pui O Beach is ideal for watching a beautiful sunset as well.
How to get there: Take the ferry from Central Pier to Mui Wo, Lantau and take Lantau Bus 1 to Pui O Beach or Cheung Sha Beaches further down.


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