Outdoor Hong Kong (Part 6)

posted in: Cycling, Hiking, Running | 2

More photos and info about the amazing outdoor places one can get to in Hong Kong with only a short boat, train or bus/taxi ride. Mountains, beaches and wildlife.

Hong Kong Trail, Stage 1 and half of Stage 2 (Hong Kong Island)

This is one of our favourite short walks. After the crowded madness of the Peak itself, you’re quickly traversing around the hillside with great views of the city below.

Our trips to Hong Kong generally involve eating too much so I felt some affinity with this feral pig.

As I’ve never seen anyone riding a horse outside of the Jockey Club this sign seems somewhat unnecessary.

Spectacular views of Aberdeen (on the south side of Hong Kong Island) from Stage 2 of the the Hong Kong Trail.

Discovery Bay and Mui Wo (Lantau Island)

I used to live in Discovery Bay and my regular run was up the hill behind DB which we set off to walk up. It’s always interesting to return and see what’s changed; it’s a much bigger place than it was and now feels like travelling to a holiday resort.

Getting to Discovery Bay involved a couple of boat trips. The first from Kowloon to Hong Kong Island on the Star Ferry.

This was my daily commute home; it’s still spectacular.

In less than 30 minutes we were approaching Disco Bay. We walked up the hill on the right of the picture, Lo Fu Tau (‘Tigers Head’), 465m.

Lillian and I used to swim in these pools in the summer when they were much more full of water; this stream is only 5 minutes from the apartment block where I used to live.

There is a lot of new development at the far end of Disco Bay (the left side of this photo) which looked pretty unattractive (albeit we only saw it from a distance).

After climbing Lo Fu Tau we walked down to Mui Wo (Silvermine Bay). Some bits of this (relatively large) town are still very rural; here are some water buffalo grazing by the path. Sadly if the planned East Lantau Metropolis (housing for a million people and a new business district on an artificial island off the east coast of Lantau) goes ahead this is going to change soon.

Even though the ELM plan states that Mui Wo will become a centre for eco-tourism I can’t imagine that the low key development along the beach is going to stay as it is.

Our walk ended at the Friendly Bike Shop where I returned the following day to rent a mountain-bike.

Lillian and I also managed to catch-up with Ken Cheng, a HK mountain-biker who I met on the Swiss Epic (and the only East Asian to complete the triple of the Cape Epic, the Swiss Epic and the Pioneer).

Chi Ma Wan Peninsula MTB (Lantau Island)

Lillian want to rest her legs after our walk and save them for a bike ride the following day so I headed back to Mui Wo for a solo mountain-bike ride. In spite of this being in one of the less mountainous parts of Hong Kong I still clocked up nearly 1000m of ascent.

A copy of the map on the wall of the Friendly Bike Shop where I rented a Giant Anthem 29’er. The beach I rode to (see below) is underlined in red. I also found a nice trail from the end of the official Dragon Tail Trail back to the start (marked in green).

Some mountain bike trails are currently under construction just south of Mui Wo (just below the pointing finger on the map). Currently there are one and a half downhill flow trails. This is near the top of the one that is only half constructed.

To get to the Dragon Tail Trail you have to pass the Chi Ma Wan ‘Correctional Institute’. I wasn’t 100% sure if I was going the right way at this point. (For anyone doing the ride some concrete steps lead above the institute to the place where this picture was taken.)

I started with the eastern loop of the trail. Most of it was fun to ride but starting where this photo was taken there was a section of mainly walking that took about 20 minutes.

This picture and the featured image for this post were taken at the deserted and beautiful beach at Dai Long Wan (one of many ‘big wave bays’ in Hong Kong).

The western loop of the Dragon Tail Trail traversed around the peninsula where I watched the fast ferries to and from Macau churning up massive wakes as they passed by.

The final section of the Trail towards Pui O was fast, easy and enjoyable. (Lantau Peak, the second highest mountain in Hong Kong, is in the far distance.)

Sai Kung Bike and Run (New Territories)

On our final day in Hong Kong, Sam kindly offered to give us a lift out of the city for a bike ride, and less kindly to pick us up at 6am. It was worth the early start. Lillian and Sam went for a ride on the nearly empty roads in the Sai Kung Country Park and I run over some hills above our parking stop.

Riding to the end of each of the major roads in the Country Park (essentially a ‘Y’ shape) was 40km with almost 900m of ascent.

We had parked by next to the houses by the sea in the middle of the picture above. The early start meant that I didn’t see a single person for the whole two hour run.

Sunrise over where Lillian and Sam were riding from Tai Tun peak.

Attempted selfie whilst climbing the next peak, Lei Da Sek (‘Lightning Hit Rock’).

Lillian demonstrating how to take a good action selfie!

Outside our breakfast stop (the cafe by the car park).

Breakfast was ‘Hong Kong style’ toast, sausage and fried egg. It tasted good.

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