Hiking in Hong Kong

Sunday afternoon my host Chris and I went for a hike up to Victoria Peak.  It was a pretty good workout, two hours to cover more than seven kilometers and an elevation gain of, I think, about 300 meters (more than 900 feet).  It was also a chance to get a different point of view on a city that many consider to be a veritable urban jungle.

This is how most people view Hong Kong – tremendously dense and tremendously vertical.  But just a short distance from where I took this picture of an urban landscape, I also shot the picture below.

It could hardly be more different, right?  This hike was a pleasant break from a few days of being surrounded by concrete.  There were so many people hiking on a beautiful Sunday afternoon, enjoying the overcast weather and the temperature that dropped several degrees as we gained elevation.

A lovely waterfall on the back side of Victoria Peak, facing the south side of Hong Kong island.  Amazing, too, how much cooler the weather gets just by getting away from the pavement and concrete.  What a heat sink “civilization” is!

Here’s a map of the route we followed.  If you don’t want to gain quite so much elevation, you can walk the approximately 2-km circuit starting and ending at the Peak visitor center.  It is mostly flat and offers a view from several different angles.

All this hiking not only helped break in a new pair of cross-trainers, it also whetted my appetite for some Shanghainese food, which I’ll write about on Friday!

0 thoughts on “Hiking in Hong Kong

  1. Gee Chris! That looks just like my orb!! Hope the hike broke in the shoes and the shoes didn’t break you in. I’m looking forward to some good food porn…

  2. reading your blog made me miss Hong Kong even more xD restaurants and everything are easily accessed compare in the western countries. I live in Shatin in Hong Kong and i can go to anywhere easily apart from Hong Kong island side of course x) anyways hope you have fun in Hong Kong and write more journeys 🙂

  3. I remember being on Victoria Peak and looking at Hong Kong. Even at that time, there was an urban concret jungle. We had taken the small train up, and the view all along the track was beautiful.

  4. @murisopsis –  It really does look like your orb, doesn’t it? You should mass-produce those. I bet you could sell a great many!@agmhkg –  Dunno about HKG but we’ve been having lovely weather here in BKK. Breezy all day long and only about 28-29 C. If this continues for the next three or four months, I’ll consider it a great winter.@Fatcat723 –  One thing that amazed me is how well-aware locals are of the extensive trail system. Kudos to the HK government for developing and advertising the network.@CurryPuffy –  Isn’t there also a lion-shaped rock up above Kowloon City? Used to be near my home on La Salle Road in Kowloon Tong, although I don’t know if you can hike up there.@waiszeblogs –  Even if you just do the flat loop around the Peak, which isn’t very tiring, it would be a fun break. Enjoy your trip and we’ll see you in Bangkok next time!@xx__lamlam__xx –  Hong Kong really is a very accessible city and that’s something I miss about living there, too. In fact, that’s something I miss anytime I’m in another city in the world where transport isn’t nearly so convenient.@ZSA_MD –  There are those who say Hong Kong is developed enough and yet it keeps growing.@foggysunnymorning –  10 years? Time for a return, I think! Ha ha!

  5. that looks like a great hike! i haven’t been hiking in a long time… i kind of miss it. then again, i’m going to get in a very long run on sunday and the scenery will be nice (both the trees with their colorful fall leaves and the eye candy amidst the 30,000 other runners), so i suppose that sort of makes up for it.

  6. @agmhkg – I love it.@CurryPuffy – Still trying to figure out if we can join you.  We’re being pulled in several directions over the holidays!  You’re always welcome to make a side trip here, though.  (hint, hint)@TheCheshireGrins – It makes it much more liveable.@kunhuo42 – Are you enjoying the benefits of runners wearing runner’s shorts, Aaron?  @icapillas – It is really nice.  Would encourage you to try!@dinhtrinh – This site has many mapped out hikes: http://hikeinhongkong.com/

  7. I have gone hiking in this area too. I used to walk down a hiking path from the Peak to the Pok Fu Lam reservoir where you can see a beautiful view of the reservoir. You can also take the No. 13 bus from Central (City Hall) to the bus terminus at Kotewall Road and walk along a hiking path upward till you reach the Peak. I like going hiking in Hong Kong Island, Kowloon, and in the New Territories.

  8. Good one, Chris!  I’m with everyone else who said it is a wonderful thing when a city has easy access to nature.  Keeps a lot of us from going insane.

  9. @ElusiveWords –  You would see that side of him if you ran behind him in a race.@ElusiveWords –  When I moved to Hong Kong, my first weekend there my ex-boyfriend (who had moved back to HKG from the US) took me hiking on Lantau with a group of his friends. We camped overnight at a youth hostel near the Po Lin Monastery then woke up at 4 am or some ungodly hour and hoked to the top of Lantau Peak to watch the sun rise. The mountaintop was crowded with other young people who had hiked or camped up there and when they sun crept over the horizon they started yelling and screaming. What I had been expecting would be a peaceful, serene, almost religious moment was instead a raucous party.

  10. Hey, glad that you did more than tourists do.   Quite suprising, Hong Kong is so small but has lots of routes for trekking.  Nice places to escape from concrete jungle 🙂

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