Happy New Year! After all the holiday feasting, are you one of those whose new year resolution is to eat healthy and exercise more? Many visitors opt for hiking the Dragon’s Back in Shek O, but do you know Hong Kong has many other off-the-beaten yet scenic hiking trails to offer? We are here to suggest five Hong Kong short hiking trails for you to start your workout in the new year! Two of the following trails are on Hong Kong Island and three of them are in the New Territories. Have a fun walk and discover the beautiful country side of Hong Kong!

1.  Mount High West

Spare two hours to hike up the Mount High West on West Hong Kong Island. You can start your journey from The Peak by taking Harlech Fitness Trail (Morning Trail). If you have slightly more time, we suggest you take minibus No. 3 from Central to the end of Kotewall Road and hike up from Hatton Road. You will pass by Hong Kong’s important historical relics including the Victoria City Boundary Stone and the Pinewood Battery. Once you are at the top of Mount High West, experience the breathtaking panoramic view of West Hong Kong Island. On clear days, you will even see as far as Disneyland in the northwest and Lamma Island in the South. Below is a photo of Pokfulam Reservoir, the south of Hong Kong Island and Lamma Island.

Mount High West

2.  Sir Cecil’s Ride

On days when you just want a stroll instead of a mountainous hike, you can enjoy a leisurely walk on where the former Hong Kong Governor, Sir Cecil, rode horses on — the Sir Cecil’s Ride. Start at Wong Nai Chung Gap and finish in Quarry Bay, while breathing in some fresh air with views from the hills behind Causeway Bay, North Point and Quarry Bay. The walk is about 2.5 hours long, covering a distance of 9.5 kilometers on rather flat terrain. If you are up for a more challenging hike, consider making a detour and hike up Mount Butler before heading down to Quarry Bay.

Sir Ceci's Ride

3.  Lobster Bay (Lung Ha Wan Country Trail)

One of the most underrated Hong Kong short hiking trails is perhaps the Lung Ha Wan Country Trail. It is perfect for those who prefer a short one-hour hike. The reward of commuting a bit further out to Clear Water Bay in East New Territories to do this children-friendly, 2-km hike is astounding. At the hilltop, you will see all the outlying islands between Sai Kung and Clear Water Bay. On a clear day, you will see people flying kites! Take a deep breath and you will forget you are actually in the concrete jungle of Hong Kong!

For directions to the trail, please visit here. There is also a map of the route here.

Lobster Bay

4.  Ngong Ping (Ma On Shan Country Trail)

Set off your journey at Ma On Shan Barbecue Site. Hike for about 45 minutes, you will arrive at the first resting area. From there, you could choose to either take the challenge to hike up the 537-meter Pyramid Hill to submerge yourself in this “Top of the World” feeling enjoying views of Shatin, Tolo Harbour and Sai Kung Peninsula, or go straight ahead towards the great plain, Ngong Ping. (Going up Pyramid Hill will require an extra 45 minutes). On windy days, you may even see paragliding experts trying to set off on the flatland, whereas on cooler days, you will find families having picnics with stray cows nearby. After resting, continue walking towards Tai Shui Tseng and finish your 2-3 hour hike in Sai Kung.

Sai Kung Ngong Ping

5.  Shing Mun Reservoir

The circular walk around Shing Mun Reservoir in the Shing Mun Country Park is one of the most family-friendly Hong Kong short hiking trails. The leisurely hike is about 8.5 kilometers long and lasts for about 3 hours. There are many photogenic spots along the trail. Remember to bring a camera to shoot the tall paperbark trees and the symmetrical landscape on the reservoir. Another important tip is DO NOT carry plastic bags with food as wild monkeys in the country park will come up and snatch your food!

Shing Mun Reservoir

We hope you enjoy these five Hong Kong short hiking trails. For more information, please visit Hong Kong Tourism Board’s website for information. Stay tuned for more hiking trail recommendations!