We’re a couple of weeks into the summer holidays, and if you’re anything like us, you’ll have already binged your favourite shows, reached the bottom of your TBR pile, and watched all the latest movie releases. What is there left to do with all this holiday?
We say it’s time to get outside and explore the awesome city we live in. Hong Kong may be small, but there are still plenty of unknown places to discover. Luckily, we’ve saved you the trouble of research, and compiled a list of Hong Kong’s most underrated hideouts.
Victoria Peak Garden
About a 20-minute walk from the Peak Galleria is the beautiful Victoria Peak Garden.
Built on the grounds of the demolished Mountain Lodge, this park features several lawns, pavilions, and beautiful Victorian gazebos. Visit the Gate Lodge to view classic architecture rarely seen in Hong Kong, and to capture stunning shots of the city from above.
How to get there: Take the Peak Tram from Central or minibus number 15 to reach The Peak Galleria.
Ma Wan Ghost Town
Located on Ma Wan Island – a small island underneath the Tsing Ma Bridge – you’ll find the abandoned fishing village Ma Wan Town, which was cleared to make way for the Park Island housing estate.
Though some buildings are now gated off, most can be accessed and explored freely. These buildings really give a glimpse into life in Hong Kong many decades ago. You can find abandoned schools, activity centres, and houses, all of which will pique your curiosity.
How to get there: Take the Park Island Ferry from Central or Tsuen Wan, or a taxi.
Mau Wu Shan Abandoned Fort
If you venture to Devil’s Peak, the mountain next to Lei Yue Mun in Kowloon, you’ll find the Mau Wu Shan Abandoned Fort, a cylindrical structure made of volcanic rock.
It is believed to have been built for waterway observation by Chinese soldiers, all the way back in the Qing dynasty (which started in 1636!).
The structure itself is fascinating, and the scenic hike up Devil’s Peak makes the trip well worth your time.
How to get there: The Devil’s Peak trail is about a 20-minute walk or short cab ride from Yau Tong MTR station.
Tai O Infinity Pool
Located in Man Cheung Po in Lantau are several infinity pools – pools where liquid flows over an edge to create an effect of water that carries on forever.
A hike through an old fishing village takes you to the Tai O pools, most of which can be easily accessed. You can go swimming, or just enjoy soaking up your surroundings. The hike up, though fairly long, allows you to marvel at the gorgeous Tai O countryside.
The best thing about these pools is they’re far away from the hustle and bustle of the city, leaving you surrounded only by the quiet embrace of nature.
How to get there: Take the Mui Wo Ferry from Central then hop on bus 1, or take the MTR to Tung Chung and catch bus 11.
Tai Tam Mound Waterfall
Hidden in the depths of the Tai Tam Country Park is the Tai Tam Mound Waterfall.
You have to hike down a challenging dirt road, but the hidden oasis that awaits at the end is well worth the effort. You can go for a swim in the refreshing pool below the falls, have a relaxing picnic with your friends, or just relax in this little piece of heaven.
While you’re there, check out the awesome Tai Tam Tuk Reservoir and some of the country park’s many awesome hiking trails, including the Tai Tam Waterworks Heritage Trail
where you can learn about Hong Kong’s history.
How to get there: Take bus 6 or 66 from Quarry Bay MTR station to the Tai Tam Reservoir Trail, which leads you to the dirt road that in turn leads to the fall.