Hiking in Hong Kong–A Trip to Mui Wo

Before moving to Hong Kong, I was looking forward to many things in addition to teaching. One was the city itself—my first association with Hong Kong had always been its amazing skyline (see picture below). I was also looking forward to living in a place where there was a mixing and melding of people & cultures from all over the world. I haven’t been disappointed with regards to either. However, I’ve loved another aspect of living in Hong Kong that I had in no way expected—the hiking!

It turns out that about 40% of Hong Kong is protected country park area*. Within these areas, the government maintains numerous campsites and hundreds of kilometers of hiking trails**. Some trails are quite similar to many in the US—they go up mountains, through forests, and the paths themselves are made of dirt and wood. Others are quite different; often made of concrete, they’re more walking trails that take you in and out of nature as well as past villages and farms.

To give you a taste of the latter, let me show you some shots from a recent hike I took around Mui Wo, a city on Lantau Island, Hong Kong’s largest island, but also one of its least densely populated (783-2999 people per square kilometer vs. downtown’s 40,000-52123 people [!!] per per square kilometer). Mui Wo is on Lantau’s eastern coast and literally means “Plum’s Nest” but is also sometimes referred to as Silver Mine Bay for the silver mines that were active on it in the 1800s. One can get there by ferry from downtown Hong Kong in twenty to forty minutes (the pier is actually in the middle of the buildings in the picture of the skyline above).
After arriving at Mui Wo Pier, we passed several farms.

Then we came to several small villages.

And finally, the view from the top!



*To learn more about conservation in Hong Kong, you can go here: http://www.epd.gov.hk/epd/misc/ehk08/en/nature/index.html

**For a list of trails and more about hiking in Hong Kong, go here: http://www.hkwalkers.net/eng/trail_list/type.htm

For more about camping, here: http://www.afcd.gov.hk/english/country/cou_vis/cou_vis_cam/cou_vis_cam.html

About Elizabeth

Elizabeth is a current Yale-China fellow. She teaches writing composition and American Studies at Chinese University of Hong Kong. Prior to the fellowship she was a member of Public Allies, an AmeriCorps program, and through them worked at a refugee resettlement agency in New Haven and studied nonprofits. She graduated from Yale in 2009 with a degree in philosophy with a focus on international ethics. In her free time she likes to explore, read, run, do yoga, do Krav Maga, and cook. She is looking forward to the service trip and meeting all of its participants soon!
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4 Responses to Hiking in Hong Kong–A Trip to Mui Wo

  1. Brian Cullina says:

    Prior to the start of the service trip we will be spending 3 days in Hong Kong. We have 3 kids, ages 14, 13 and 10. We have some things planned, but are interested in other fun ideas.


    Look forward to meeting you.

  2. Brendan says:

    I have enjoyed the heritage trails in the New Territories, which will definitely give you a different picture of Hong Kong than the Central (downtown) area: http://www.lcsd.gov.hk/ce/Museum/Monument/en/trails.php

    The cable car up to the Po Lin monastery and big Buddha statue is a fun trip with some great views: http://www.np360.com.hk/

    I also enjoyed visiting the Wetland Park, though it is not particularly Chinese and is a little out of the way (unless you are already in that area for the Ping Shan heritage trail): http://www.wetlandpark.com/en/index.asp

  3. Victoria (Tory) says:

    I would also recommend these:

    The Hong Kong Museum of History in Tsim Sha Tsui East

    The Museum of Coastal Defense

    The Sai Kung area is also full of beautiful coastline and there is at least one compay that does a combination sea-kayaking and hiking trip

    You can get some more ideas here: