Discover Hong Kong’s pure magnificence on one of many territory’s many mountain climbing trails.
Photograph: Chi Wai Yuen / EyeEm/Getty Images/EyeEm
Hong Kong is a neon-signed, skyscraper-filled, concrete paradise. But additionally it is a extra typical paradise of sandy seashores, hidden waterfalls and luxurious jungles stuffed with snorting buffalo. In this metropolis of contrasts, it’s completely regular to spend mornings scrambling up sub-tropical mountains, afternoons lolling about on Thai-style seashores and evenings within the dazzling lights of the Central district, ricocheting from rooftop restaurant to hidden cocktail bar. Want to ship the smug issue in your Instagram web page hovering? Here’s how.
Hong Kong by day
Tai Mo Shan
For severe climbers who can’t depart a mountain high unvisited, there may be one peak that should be conquered – Tai Mo Shan, the best summit in Hong Kong. Meaning “big hat mountain” in Cantonese, at 970 metres above sea degree, it even will get a skinny layer of snow on midwinter mornings. If you have sufficient willpower, set off pre-dawn to expertise extraordinary views of the New Territories within the misty morning mild. Start on the base of the Route Twisk highway, winding up and down for 5 hours, snapping a photograph on the Yuen Long lookout. Afterwards, cool off on the Long Falls, the best waterfall in Hong Kong.
For these who like their hike nearer to a stroll, Dragon’s Back is likely one of the best trails on the island, with gently undulating bends that supply a spectacular view of the rocky coves and seashores of the South Side. Although with eight-year-olds, eighty-year-olds and even the severely hungover conquering the well-known dragon-shaped slope that leads down from the height, the path can get crowded on weekends. Start at Trail eight on Shek O Road and afterwards reward your self with lunch at Cococabana on Shek O seashore and a swim within the heat sea.
Shek O seashore: a worthy reward for South Side explorers. Photograph: AsianDream/Getty Images/iStockphoto
Lantau Island is called the “lungs of Hong Kong” and is beloved by locals because the calming antidote to the adrenalin-filled hothouse throughout the water. A jumble of emerald leaves and buffalo-jammed roads, Lantau is Indiana Jones land, the place you’ll be able to lose your self on the steamy forest flooring – or no less than you possibly can, if it weren’t for Hong Kong’s whip-speed 4G. For hikers, there may be the Lantau Trail, which covers a loop of 43 miles, break up into 12 manageable sections. The most well-known is the vertiginous Sunset Peak – or, in the event you’re on the lookout for one thing scenic, the two-hour path from Discovery Bay to Mui Wo, which cuts by means of historical fishermen’s villages, earlier than rising on the Trappist Haven Monastery.
Plover Cove Country Park
Exercising in Hong Kong’s notoriously humidity is made infinitely extra pleasurable when there’s the possibility to chill off underneath a waterfall mid-hike, ideally in the mean time when the sweat issue is reaching important ranges. And at Plover Cove Country Park, you’ll be able to recreate the well-known Timotei rainforest advert at numerous places within the four,500 hectares of protected jungle. The prettiest is Bride’s Pool – named after an area fable a few girl who turned so entranced by the picture-perfect waterfall that she drowned on the way in which to her wedding ceremony. Shame concerning the watery finish, however we will perceive why she bought so distracted.
Hong Kong by evening
Close sufficient to Central which you can stroll there from the busy Airport Express station, however distant sufficient that the dazzling skyscrapers have shrunk into fairly colonial buildings and tree-lined stairwells, Sheung Wan is considered one of Hong Kong’s extra alluring areas. And it’s home to most of the most modern eating places within the metropolis. Get spicy Thai meals at Chachawan, hen delights on the fabulously modern Yardbird, genuine French and Italian cooking underneath the intense lights of the Cooked Food Centre at ABC Kitchen, or go to Yum Cha Central for mouth-watering dim sum – together with cartoon-character-shaped dumplings on request.
Sunset over Victoria Harbour. Photograph: d3sign/Getty Images
Six modern, tree-lined streets perched above the busy district of Wan Chai, Starstreet Precinct is a tiny oasis of cool in probably the most frenetic a part of the town. Climb one of many small out of doors stairways main from Queen’s Road East as much as these fairly streets and swap dai pai dongs (meals stalls) for Italian cafes serving aperitivo. Start your night with cocktails at Ted’s Lookout, adopted by dinner at Le Garcon de Saigon – arguably Hong Kong’s greatest Vietnamese restaurant amid some stiff competitors.
Sure, London and New York every have a Soho – however do they have a PoHo? Boasting that uncommon mixture of ultra-pretty streets and ultra-trendy residents, this leafy neighbourhood set across the Po Hing Fong (therefore the identify), above Sheung Wan, is stuffed with glamorous cafes and 10-seater eating places in residential courtyards – and there’s not often a vacationer in sight. Start your night with an aperitif and a few snacks on the French-style Café Deadend, earlier than a dim sum dinner at fashionable Man Mo Café, which is known as after the well-known incense-filled temple close by and fuses Chinese and western elements.
The stylish Ping Pong Gintonería cocktail bar in taking place Sai Ying Pun
Sai Ying Pun
Sai Ying Pun is an instance of Hong Kong gentrification in fast-forward. Residential a mere 5 years in the past, this buzzing district is now fertile floor for mirrored skyscrapers and buzzing eating places with quirky ideas. Flying Pig Bistro sells each pork dish conceivable, Qing Zuo mixes Taiwanese and Cantonese cooking, whereas Bali-inspired Potato Head Hong Kong affords wholesome inexperienced curries and dwell music. And don’t miss the easy-to-miss Ping Pong Gintonería – too stylish for an indication, this underground gin bar serves goldfish bowl-sized cocktails in a transformed sports activities corridor.
Discover extra mountain climbing trails in Hong Kong