Hong Kong is known for its iconic skyscraper-studded skyline, but the towering hills dotted throughout the city are not so well known. Chatteris Tutor Zoé Watson gives a quick overview of some of Hong Kong’s most prominent hiking routes, and how to look after the natural environment while you are treading the trails!
Dragon’s Back to Big Wave Bay
Easily accessible and offering an impressive view of the Southern Island and coastline, Dragon’s Back is popular for good reason. The hike ends at Big Wave Bay, so you can take a dip in the sea, surf the waves, or have a relaxing meal at any of the local restaurants.
Distance: 8.5 km
Duration: 2 hours
A must-see spot in Hong Kong, The Peak is very popular thanks to its epic views of Victoria Harbour and the city itself. The easiest way to explore The Peak is to take an easy-going hour-long walk around the Peak itself. This circular walk begins next to Peak Tower and offers a panoramic view of the city. Great for beginners or as a more relaxed hike, this walk is flat and accessible.
Distance: 3.5 km
Duration: 1 hour
Lantau Peak and Big Buddha
After a steep 4 kilometre hike, with nearly 600 metres of incline, you’ll find yourself at the top of Hong Kong’s second highest peak. Ending at an impressive 934 metres above sea level, you are rewarded with a spectacular 360° view of Lantau Island and the South China Sea. Once you’ve soaked up the views, begin your descent to the famous Big Buddha monument. From here, you can continue the hike or take the cable car or a bus back to the MTR.
Distance: 6.5 km
Duration: 3 hours
Named after its resemblance to a lion’s head, Lion Rock is considered to be one of Hong Kong’s most iconic hikes. At its peak of 495 metres, you will have an unobstructed, 360° view of Kowloon, Hong Kong Island and the New Territories. The start is a steep, inclined ascent up many stairs, then there is a mix of gentler paved roads, make-shift staircases, and natural trails.
Distance: 6 km
Duration: 2.5 hours
Climb up to Hong Kong’s third-highest peak for the best natural evening view our city has to offer. Start this ambitious hike at Pak Kung Au, which leads you up the grassy Lantau Trail to a panoramic view from the aptly named Sunset Peak. As you ascend the highlands, enjoy the Lantau coastline, Pui O, and explore the cluster of stone shacks (Lan Tau Ying) on the way.
Distance: 7 km
Duration: 4 hours
Top tips for environmentally friendly hiking
- – Stay on marked trails to avoid trampling on fragile soils and surface vegetation.
- – Do not feed the animals; it can be detrimental in the long run.
- – Take a reusable water bottle to minimise use of single use plastics.
- – Respect plants and wildlife by keeping your distance and enjoying them from afar.
- – Don’t leave any of your litter and pick up rubbish as you hike.
Remember, take nothing but pictures and leave nothing but footprints!
Reaching for your hiking boots? Why not join us at Chatteris for an opportunity to check out the beautiful scenery of Hong Kong while working to support the students who live here? See here for how to apply to the Chatteris International Graduate Programme.