It isn’t something you would have expected from this hotbed of culture, commerce, and nightlife, but Hong Kong has beautiful outdoor settings not far from the city. Just outside of Hong Kong you’ll find beaches, woods, and volcanic landscapes that will keep you moving around throughout your entire holiday. For wild beaches, beautiful forests, and fantastic views of the city, check out some of these hikes in Hong Kong.
Dragon’s Back Ridge
This beginner urban trail hike is one of the best in Asia, thanks to the spectacular views over the city and sea. Starting in Shek O, you’ll head up the dragon’s back, a rolling path between Shek O Peak and Wan Cham Shan. Once you get up to the path, you’ll be overlooking the sea and Tai Long Wan, and on a clear day you can see Tung Lung Island. If you’re really fit, pack a swimsuit and continue down the trail to Tai Long Wan where you can go for a swim or a surf, as long as you’re not too tired from the hike.
Peak Circle Walk
The Peak Circle Walk winds around the highest point in the city, which means you’ll get fantastic views of the Victoria Harbor. The hike begins at Lugard Road near Peak Tower, one of the most popular attractions in Hong Kong. Follow Lugard Road to Harlech Road along the tree-covered path, and check out the view over the harbor and the waterfall at Mount Austin Playground. Try this hike in the evening before the sun goes down, starting at the end of Harlech Road. You’ll get to see the south of the island in the glow of the sunset.
Nam San Wai
Nam Sang Wai is just north of Yuen Long, and the Kam Tin and Shan Pui Rivers cross paths here. It’s a great place for cyclists, and hikers are welcome as well. Among the areas wetlands you’ll find abandoned farms, fish ponds, and wooden huts, showing you the rural side of Hong Kong. You can get started on Nam Sang Wai Road and walk along the Shan Pui River. You’ll explore the mangrove or mudflats and stroll through the tree path to a ferry harbour that will take you across the river.
The Maclehose Trail is the longest in Hong Kong, spanning 100 kilometers around the Sai Kung Peninsula and across the New Territories. Racers complete the full trek every year in the Oxfam Trailwalk, but the hike has been split up into ten sections. Stages 1 and 2 will take you through secluded villages and beaches, and you’ll be able to catch ferries or mini buses if your legs get tired along the 23 kilometre trail. If you make it to stage 5, you’ll find Lion Rock, with a dramatic view of Kowloon and Hong Kong Island—and maybe even some wild monkeys!
Going to Hong Kong and not doing a hike will mean that you’re missing out on one of the best parts of the city, so be sure to check one out. By the way, if you’re planning your trip to Asia’s world city, check out this awesome guide to hotels in Hong Kong!