The other Hong Kong

Most visitors to Hong Kong think mostly in terms of the bustling urban areas such as Kowloon and Central. However, there exists another side; one that is sparsely populated, green and even has wildlife. We guide you away from the crowds towards areas of outstanding natural beauty and havens of calm.

Hong Kong Island and outlying islands

Enjoy a day at the beach at either Shek O or Big Wave Bay nearby. Take your own BBQ or eat out at one of the local cafés. There are walking trails up behind for those so inclined.

hong-kong-beach

Lantau Island is best known for being home to Hong Kong’s International Airport. There are many other more exciting things to see or do including the stilt houses at Tai O and the Ngong Ping 360 cable car ride. The official website for the latter, http://www.np360.com.hk, offers a range of other suggestions for visitors to the island.

floating-village-hong-kong

Lamma and Peng Chau islands can both be reached by regular ferries and provide a real contrast to the city skyscrapers. You will find a maze of lanes through towns with interesting shopping options as well as delightful fishing hamlets scattered around the coast. Photographers will find a wide range of opportunities but should be aware of ferry times to avoid getting stuck overnight unexpectedly.

ngong-ping-360

The New Territories, from Kowloon

The extensive wetlands of Mai Po Marsh are an important wintering ground for many migratory bird species. Bird-spotters will be in their element with many rare species visiting the shallow gei wai (shrimp ponds) and mud-flats.

wetland-birds-hong-kong

Sai Kung town, east and north of Kowloon, is an attractive fishing port well-known for its super-fresh seafood restaurants as well as for a host of options beyond. It is only a short hop over to Sharp Island or to Yim Tin Tsai, the latter with its abandoned buildings providing interest to short walks. The whole area around the High Island Reservoir is scenic, bordering on wilderness. If you can arrange private transport then longer hikes and remote coves beckon.

seafood-restaurant-hong-kong

Of course, there are plenty of other beauty spots to be discovered. Hopefully the few mentioned here will get you thinking and out beyond the the familiar streets, out to the other Hong Kong.

basalt-beyond-sai-kung

Ian Ford is Operations Manager at Photo Tours Abroad.

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Comments (4)

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  1. Hi, interesting read. Rural Hong Kong has a lot to offer! I did like the island of Cheung Chau that can be reached in a short time by ferry. It is so tranquil and you can walk all the way around the island in a few hours. Best regards, Franziska

  2. Ian Ford says:

    Hi Franziska. Thank you for the feedback, the suggestion and for confirming the priciple that there is another side to Hong Kong.

    Happy travels,
    Ian

  3. Enjoyed reading about the islands. I’ve only one short stopover in Hong Kong under my belt so far, but likely to return, so visit to the islands now on my to do list.

  4. Ian Ford says:

    Hello Birgit

    Thank you for raising that point. Yes – many of us pass through Hong Kong – so why not explore a little bit further each time. Enjoy

    Ian

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