Hong Kong may be one of the most dazzling cities in the world – but just beyond the skyscrapers lies a magnificent outdoors, with country parks and natural reserves making up 40% of the territory's land. From short, easy walks to scramble-up-a-mountain treks, our handpicked routes will guide you through the best hikes that Hong Kong has to offer.
Hiking in Hong Kong
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Walk the walk: the best of Hong Kong's hikes
1. Short walks
Often easily reached by bus or metro, Hong Kong's hiking is accessible to everyone, with levels to suit all ages and abilities.
The 40-minute Bride’s Pool in Tai Mei Tuk takes its name from a spooky urban legend involving a bride, a nasty storm, and a sunken sedan chair – but don’t let that put you off. The scenic route ends in a stunning waterfall and a mirror pool (and barbecue facilities so you can kick back and enjoy the views).
The 45-minute Ngong Ping Fun Walk offers a bird’s eye view of Lantau from 934 metres high – easily reached thanks to a spectacular cable car ride up. Add in a visit to the Big Buddha to really make the most of your trip.
Experience a slice of Hong Kong history on the Ping Shan Heritage Trail in Tin Shui Wai (30 minutes), home to the city’s oldest pagoda – or heave ho to the Cheung Po Tsai Traditional Path in Cheung Chau (45 minutes), which leads to the stash cave of Asia’s most notorious pirate.
2. Family-friendly hikes
Some brisk exercise up a mountain might sound nice for mum and dad, but sometimes the kids need something a little extra.
Keep the kids entertained on the Hong Pak Country Trail in Quarry Bay, where they can paddle in streams and clamber over boulders and rock stairs, while you enjoy the views.
Alternatively, the tranquil Lamma Island Family Trail is a well-paved walk that slowly winds uphill to around 100 metres above sea level, offering unobstructed vistas of neighbouring Lantau Island and Cheung Chau.
Discover Hong Kong’s unique biodiversity at Hong Kong Wetland Park and Tsim Bei Tsui. A stroll along the overwater wooden bridge will treat you to scenes of lush mangroves, vast mudflats, and diving waterbirds.
Lobster Bay is a pretty cove on the tip of Clearwater Bay that’s appeared in many local movies. Getting there means walking up stairs for half an hour, but its picturesque picnic spots and kite-flying hills are worth the climb.
3. Most challenging hikes
If a walk in a park to you sounds like… well, a walk in the park, then luckily Hong Kong is home to some trails that only more seasoned hikers dare to undertake.
Sharp Peak, unsurprisingly, is named after its precipitous steepness. A challenge even for experienced hikers, the trail stretches over 14.5km and takes around seven hours to complete.
If your thighs are glutton for punishment, conquer the thousand or so stairs of Violet Hill and the Twins – and once you’ve caught your breath at the top, enjoy stunning views over the Tai Tam Reservoir and Stanley.
The second highest summit in Hong Kong, Lantau Peak (Fung Wong Shan) presents the added challenge of a painfully early wake up followed by a two-hour climb to catch the best sunrise in Hong Kong.
4. Best views
Hong Kong is known, amongst many other things, for its jaw-dropping views, from skyscrapers set against mountains to bizarre natural land formations.
No visit is complete without a trip up Victoria Peak. Time your hike, drive, or tram journey to the top right and be met with beautiful views of Victoria Harbour at dusk as the city’s skyscrapers begin to light up.
Dragon’s Back is the most famous – and as a result, often the busiest – hiking trail in town. Walk down the ‘spine of the dragon’ and finish up with a seafood lunch at the quaint, colourful village of Shek-O.
Explore the extraordinary volcanic rock formations of the High Island Geo Trail, the granite hills of Po Toi Islands, and the appropriately named Tortoise Rock.
5. Beach hikes and camping
It’s not all hills and mountains – Hong Kong is also home to some pretty spectacular beaches, and some of the best can only be reached on foot.
Feel the island vibes on a hike from Mui Wo to Pui O, the longest stretch of beach in Hong Kong, and finish up with an oceanfront burger brunch at iconic beach bar Mavericks.
MacLehose Trail stage 1 leads you through some extraordinarily diverse landscapes to Long Ke Village, a picture-perfect cove of emerald waters and white sands that makes an ideal spot to pitch a tent and spend the night.
If you’re after a more secluded hideaway, Tai Long Wan Trail remains one of the city’s best kept secrets. It comprises four pristine beaches: Sai Wan, Ham Tin, and the untouched Tai Wan and Tung Wan.
6. Best sunset hikes
Whether the light is catching the sea, skyscrapers, or mountain tops – or all three – the sight of the sun setting over Hong Kong is one you won't forget in a hurry.
Climb the highest peak of Hong Kong, Tai Mo Shan (957 metres), also an extinct volcano. you will see the sun setting on a bed of clouds over the Tsuen Wan skyline.
Sunset Peak, the second highest mountain in Lantau, luckily lives up to its name – offering climbers who undertake the two-hour trek fabulous views of the island, and planes ascending from the airport.
The lesser known Pineapple Hill is dubbed the ‘Canyon of Hong Kong’ thanks to its rugged landscape. The trail juts out from the canyon and joins Ha Pak Nai at the end, the most-photographed sunset spot in Hong Kong.
7. Wildlife spotting
It might be one of the most densley populated cities on the planet, but Hong Kong has also got room for the likes of birds, boars, buffalos, monkeys, and more.
Hoi Ha is a marine park replete with colourful corals and a host of watery wildlife (so make sure to pack a snorkel). A short walk inland is Pak Sha O, the best remaining Hakka village nestled in the wooded valley.
Lion Rock Peak is a four-hour hike offering sweeping views of Kowloon peninsula and Hong Kong Island – with a trail populated by increasingly cheeky rhesus monkeys.
Neighbour to Lion Rock, Ma On Shan, or Horse Saddle Mountain is a haven to wild animals and plants (including a wild leopard cat that a pair of walkers recently mistook for a tiger, causing a media furore).