The Hong Kong skyline is world famous and what better place to view it than from one of its many country parks? There are a huge amount of hikes that afford views of the sweeping cityscape, and here are just a handful of them.
The famous rock looms large over Kowloon and is an impressive sight from the ground, but it offers an even better sight from its cliff edge across the vast city. You can take the MTR to Wong Tai Sin MTR, on the green line, and begin to walk up Sha Tin Pass Road. The road there is not very interesting, but it’s possible to take a taxi to the trail head. When you reach Lion’s Pavilion, head through the archway with “Lion Rock Country Park” written across it. It is a fairly straightforward trail, with MacLehose markers every 500m.
Less than 2km in, there is a left turn up a steep set of stairs. Head up and you’ll find yourself on Lion Rock, with the cliff plummeting away below and the city stretched out in front of you. There’s a 360 degree view of Hong Kong and the New Territories. Turn right, along the ridge and you will find another path down. Head straight and you can exit the Country Park by turning left, downhill at the Reunification Pavilion, or continue along the MacLehose trail over Beacon Hill, eventually hitting Tai Po Road.
The Morning Trail
Starting on Conduit Road, this hike is very accessible. Where Conduit meets Hatton Road, head uphill. The path winds up for 1.5km, with markers every 100m. Eventually it plateaus to a small park containing exercise equipment like pull-up bars. Turn left, then left again along Lugard Road. The path follows the contour of Victoria Peak and offers views of the city up close. It is spectacular at night, and as it is all concrete paved, you are safe from a twisted ankle in the dark. You will finish at The Peak. You can get a bus or taxi back down, or turn right and walk around the other side of the hill back to the top of The Morning Trail.
Start from Parkview and head north on the Wilson Trail. The path follows a set of wide steps all the way up to Jardine’s Lookout, for an angle of Hong Kong that is spectacular. The Hong Kong Stadium is below you and the city looms in the distance, framed by the green hills.
Continue along the path towards Quarry Bay. First, there is a sharp descent, with the quarry on your left, then a steep set of stairs up to Mount Butler, which has a great view of its own. Head down Mount Butler and turn left down the wide tarmac road, which winds to Quarry Bay and finishes near exit A of the MTR.
Red Incense Burner Summit
This hidden gem offers Hong Kong from an angle you will rarely see. Start from Quarry Bay, near exit A of the MTR, at the bottom of the road that leads back up to Mount Butler. As you walk up the hill, you will see a sign for Sir Cecil’s Ride – take that path. The trail is beautiful and smooth with trees and fauna hanging over the path.
There are a few criss-crossed trails, and not all have signs, but head for Braemar Hill.
It is best to examine Google Maps before you leave and have your phone on hand to keep you on the right path. Eventually you come to a junction; to your left, a concrete path heads uphill, and to your right there is a rugged trail. Turn right. Only a few metres after taking the right turn, you’ll see a path through the bushes straight ahead of you. Take it. Avoid the left or right hand turns downhill.
Now on the trail, you’ll have to push your way through some branches and maybe some spiderwebs, but only a couple of minutes away is a large outcrop of rocks, which you can clamber up and see Hong Kong from a magnificent angle.
Head back the way you came and then turn left down the path that you avoided on the way up. You will find yourself at a bus stop on Braemar Hill Road to take you back to civilisation.
Help us understand what you are interested in so that we can improve SCMP and provide a better experience for you. We would like to invite you to take this five-minute survey on how you engage with SCMP and the news.