Picturesque village

Get out of town and hike Hong Kong’s ‘Dragon’s Back’

For a change of scenery outside of Hong Kong, the Dragon’s Back trail offers incredible mountain views within 10 km.

Hong Kong is a beautiful city of magic and light. So many unique things to experience and different things to try. But the hustle and bustle of the city can sometimes become overwhelming. Why not take a break and experience one of the best day hikes Hong Kong has to offer? The Dragon’s Back Trail. The Dragon’s Back is a mountain ridge that crosses Shek O Peak, it lies within the Shek O Country Park. This incredible 5.6 mile hike can be done in a day, providing the perfect break from city life.

Hike the Dragon’s Back Trail in Hong Kong

There are four main stops on this amazing hike:

Stop 1: Shek O Peninsula Viewpoint. As you walk along this hike, a beautiful perfect path will open up to the horizon below as you ascend. This is a great place for an aesthetic view and an Instagram photo! It will also give you a little break if you are new to hiking or are a little tired from the sun.

Stop 2: Shek O Peak. This spot is designed and set up to capture the most amazing panoramic photos of the coasts of the peninsula. From there you can see all the winding trails and understand why this hike is called Dragon’s Back. If you decide the hike is a bit too long, this is the best place to turn around and turn the hike into a short loop.

Stop 3: Dragon’s Back and Pottinger Gap. Make sure to stay on the hilly ridge and trace the ‘dragon’ as you climb the hill. At the top will be a stopping point “Dragon’s Back Viewing Point” and it offers a spectacular view of Tai Tam Bay from the west side. When the sky is clear, even Lamma Island can be seen. Once over the ridge you will come to Pottinger Gap and here there are breathtaking views of the urban skyscrapers of Chai Wan against a wooded landscape – so picturesque!

Stop 4: Great Wave Bay. This is the very last leg of the trail and can be slippery at times, so be sure to bring proper shoes! Once you complete the trail and leave the houses in the village, you will see a very popular beach with suffering and other fun adventures! Big Wave Bay Beach will greet your arrival with shimmering blue waves and warm sunshine. The perfect end to an amazing hike and day away from the city.

Related: 20 of the World’s Toughest Hikes (That Even Grandma Could Do)

This is considered a moderately easy hike, even for novice hikers. This is often the first hike people take in Hong Kong. This hike has two options:

Option 1: It’s a bit shorter of a hike. This would be the Dragon’s Back hike only to Shek O point. This option loops out of the hike, turning at Shek O and back to the starting point. This version of the hike is approximately 2 miles and will take approximately 2 hours, depending on the speed of the hikers.

Option 2: This is the longest hike that contains all four stopping points and ends at Big Wave Bay Beach. This complete trail is approximately 5.6 miles and can take 2-4 hours. It covers the entire “spine” of the dragon and ends at a beautiful beach to relax and bask in the delicious feeling of accomplishing the hike! Plus, if you start hiking earlier in the day – most optimal to avoid the scorching sun – it means more time at the beach to relax and enjoy your vacation!

Tips and Tricks for the Dragon’s Back Hike

  • Wear comfortable shoes
  • Wear sunscreen – this is an open and exposed trail, the sun will be beating down the entire trip
  • Pack water, sunscreen and snacks – there are no stopping points on this trail
  • Check drop-off and pick-up locations for the hike in advance
  • Bring cash for rides and snacks at the hike and the beach

The best and easiest way to get to Dragon’s Back is to take the MTR to Shau Kei Wan station. Take the A2 exit and just outside the A2 exit on your left you will find the minibus waiting to take hikers and sunbathers to Dragon’s Back and Big Wave Bay Beach. Make sure you have cash on you ($8 per person) as the minibus drivers do not accept any other form of payment.

Be sure to bring a waterproof camera and capture all the breathtaking views from many locations along this most famous trail in Hong Kong. This is one of the most beautiful forest areas in Hong Kong and every square inch is full of great photo spots to make the most of your trip!

Because this hike is so popular, weekends can get crowded. For the best experience, consider doing the hike on a weekday during your vacation. It will also help ensure fewer people at the beach, allowing you to have a more amazing and enjoyable time in your day.

When booking your amazing Hong Kong vacation trip, be sure to include a day to hike Dragon’s Tail and spend the day at Bay Wave Bay Beach. This is sure to be one of the highlights and best photo opportunities of your trip. Wǒmen zǒu ba!

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