Exploring HK’s Vast Nature Reserves: Dragon’s Back Trail

Due to the steep mountains and dense wilderness, Hong Kong boasts excellent hiking.

Dragon's Back Trail
PHOTO ANTON WALKER

Hong Kong rightfully brings to mind the image of packed streets and towering skyscrapers. What many people don’t know is that seventy percent of Hong Kong SAR is covered in county nature parks. Due to the steep mountains and dense wilderness, Hong Kong boasts excellent hiking. The best part is that many of the trails are just minutes from the central downtown.

On a misty Saturday morning, four of my friends and I headed off to hike the Dragon’s Back Trail, one of the most popular hikes on Hong Kong Island. Our trip there required us to take a bus, to ride the MTR subway, and to take another bus. We also made a detour to get some delicious breakfast egg tarts. Our last bus ride was only ten minutes, during which we traveled from the dense city to the trailhead, where our bus dropped us off.

Dragon's Back Trail
PHOTO ANTON WALKER

The hike began in a dense bamboo forest, which soon opened up to lower greenery with seeping views of the coastline line and surrounding tiny islands. The hike derives its name from the rolling hills, which resemble a dragon’s back. Stairs were built in order to help hikers up and down the steepest parts of the hike. While runners and mountain bikers flew past us, we strolled along and took the time to enjoy the views.

We decided to continue onwards to Big Wave Bay, a tiny beach village known for some of the best surfing in the area. The chilly weather most definitely didn’t entice us to go for a swim or a surf, but we did get some ice cream and watch the mass of surfers take on the waves. Although we felt completely removed from the hustle and bustle of the city, within minutes a bus had us back in the city, showing us the true escape of Hong Kong hiking.

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Dragon's Back Trail
PHOTO ANTON WALKER

Anton Walker

Born in Aarau, Switzerland and grew up in San Diego, Anton always goes for a run in a new city - it's the best way to explore and see areas that sight-seeing routes won’t cross. As a huge car person, he always tries to pick up car magazines in different countries that he visits as souvenirs.

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