Well, let me join the many of who, who write and post about their hiking experience in and around Hong Kong, now, that I finally went to explore the beauty of Lantau island and its vast hiking trails. The beautiful sunshine weather was certainly a good amount of encouragement, besides the need to clear my mind from all the hassles 2020 has challenged me with. I am not going to write a full-fledged description of every single step I made during my walk, but rather write about the impressions made as well as perhaps a few things to take note of while venturing on exploring any section of the Lantau trail, including things to watch out for. It can seriously save you some time.
One good recommendation I would like to share – always follow the yellow sign board if you plan to stay on the official trail!
Lantau Trail Section 5 – or what it was supposed to be 🙂
The first hike on 31st of December 2020, an incredible beautiful sunny, last day of December, was aimed to completing section 5 of the Lantau trail. I took the inspiration from a hiking magazine as well as from the many resources one can find on the Internet.
Once arriving on Lantau island’s Tung Chung bus terminal, I jumped into bus number 11 bringing me all the way to the starting point of the section 5 located just near to the junction of Sham Wat Road and Keng Shan Road on south Lantau. The trail leads through beautiful landscape, open hillsides with stunning views in virtually all directions.
The hike is considered fairly challenging with a suggested time of about a 4 to 5 hours walk, depending on your speed and how often you may want to stop for a photo taking opportunity, or, to quickly divert from the official path to explore the area.
Eventually it took me close to 7 hours to complete the hike because I took a “wrong turn” (see the image above) just about after completing perhaps half of the distance of section 5 and making my final way to Tai O, a popular fishing village famous for its many extraordinary seafood restaurants. Well, it wasn’t that bad, despite the added time and distance that needed to be covered as well as the sun preparing to set. So, I had to hurry my way down, partly walking parts of section 6 and 7 instead of continuing on section 5.
It was rather challenging on a few occasions, with steep steps descending down to the last part of my walk, section 7, leading from Nga Ying Kok campsite to Tai O. The only real reward was the scenic views of the coastal area and the beauty of the setting sun. Stunning views with virtually not running into any other hiker for perhaps an hour or two. No wonder, since I was not following the official part of section 5. So, be reminded to check the signboards carefully. The section 5 trail, like all other sections of the Lantau trail, is actually well maintained and has proper signs and distance posts available to guide your way.
The added detour was well worth it, despite that I was getting tired and despite that the trail of the detour section was not as well maintained as compared to the “official” part. I would suggest to stay on the official section 5 trail since for most, 7 hours is pretty challenging to complete.
I for myself will give it another shot soon to finish section 5 as it is intended.
on the ground, just judge for yourself.