Summer heat got you beat? Get your steps in at night with our guide to night hiking in Hong Kong.
Summer in Hong Kong is not for the faint of heart. If it’s not pouring down rain, then it’s searingly sunny outside. Although the sunshine makes for some spectacular days lounging at the beach or splashing at the pool, it can be hard to hit the hiking trails in high heat and humidity. Night hiking in Hong Kong is the perfect solution for those who still want to get outside during the summer to explore Hong Kong’s amazing country parks. Another upside of night treks? Many trails offer panoramic views of Hong Kong’s skyscrapers lit up at night, which can make some Insta-worthy photos. Here’s our top five trails for night hiking in Hong Kong:
1. The Peak
A favourite with hordes of people by day, a jaunt around The Peak on Luggard Road is a crowd-free treat at night. For those new to night hiking, this easy 4km trail is a good place to get started. Enjoy 360-degree views of the Hong Kong skyline lit up bright and you can start or finish the night with a bite to eat at one of restaurants located at the Peak Galleria. (Fiamma is one of our top picks for family-friendly restaurants if you’ve got hungry kids in tow.) Still trying to hit your step goal for the day? The Old Peak Road down from The Peak is well lit at night and will lead you back into the heart of the Mid-Levels.
2. Garden Hill
Looking for a break at the end of your day between work and play? This 15-minute walk is a great way to watch the sunset over some of the older districts of Kowloon. From the summit of Garden Hill, you can see a quieter side of Sham Shui Po. To get there, take the MTR to Shek Kip Mei (Exit A) and walk to Mei Ho House. There will be a path next to the building leading up to the stairs. Once you’ve stretched your legs, you can grab dinner at one of the many places for delicious cheap eats in Sham Shui Po.
3. Sir Cecil’s Ride & Braemar Hill
Bus up, hike down is a recipe for success when hiking in Hong Kong in the summer. Take the 24M minibus from Admiralty to start of the trail on Mount Butler Road. From there, you can enjoy sunset views over Victoria Harbour and Hong Kong island’s eastern neighbourhoods during the 3km hike from Sui Ma Shan, along the ridgeline of Sir Cecil’s Ride, and on down to Braemar Hill above North Point. Don’t miss the views from the top of Hung Hong Lo Fung, which overlooks the skyscrapers of Causeway Bay, Central and Tsim Sha Tsui. Reward yourself with a sundowner cocktail at Cruise in North Point – or check out any of these excellent happy hour spots.
4. Suicide Cliff via Kowloon Peak
Even those who having done a lot of night hiking in Hong Kong consider the 12km Suicide Cliff trail as one of the most difficult in Hong Kong. It would be safest to first familiarise yourself with the trail with a hike during the day before tackling the trail at night. Be sure to bring a flashlight, a headlamp, plenty of water, and take extra caution on the trail’s stone steps. Once you reach the jaw-dropping cliff, go carefully down the rocks to take your next Instagram photo.
To return, follow the trail back down to Fei Ngo Shan, using the same path. There are several different ways to get to the start of the trailhead in the Ma On Shan Country Park. You can take the Kwun Tung MTR line to the Choi Hung station. Then you can either take a taxi along Clear Water Bay Road to Fei Ngo Shan Road, or you can catch the green number 1A minibus from outside A3 exit of the Choi Hung MTR station. Or you take the Tseung Kwan O line to the Hang Hau station and catch the green number 11 minibus to Fei Ngo Shan Road. Once you’ve reached Fei Ngo Shan Road, there are sufficient signs around the area to direct you to the entry to Ma On Shan Country Park where your hike will start.
5. Lantau Trail Section 2
Many of Hong Kong’s summit hikes are too exposed to tackle during summer’s peak heat. But you can still get your climb on with a night hike over the lower slopes of Sunset Peak on Lantau Island. This 7km hike, which climbs to an elevation of 700m, starts from the Nam Shan barbecue area near Mui Wo and finishes at the Pak Kung Au mountain pass. Be warned, there are multiple uphill climbs and stone staircases along the way.
The second half of the trail, starting from Yi Tung Shan to the bottom of Sunset Peak, is the most difficult. But the work is well worth the reward of views across the horizon from Tung Chung to Cheung Sha. To get there, take the Mui Wo Ferry from Central Ferry Pier 6. Once in Mui Wo, you can either walk, take a bus, or a take a taxi to Nam Shan. From Pak Kung Au, you can catch a bus to either the Tung Chung MTR station, or back to the Mui Wo Ferry Pier.
Looking for more to do on Hong Kong’s biggest island? Check out our top picks for a day trip on Lantau.