It is hard
to believe that, just beyond Kowloon, Hong Kong
has rugged peaks, remote valleys, and ocean coastlines.
Or that in these places there is striking natural
beauty -- and surprising ecological diversity.
Trail, a 100 kilometre-long Country Parks hiking
trail, winds through this region. Generally crossing
higher land, the ten-Section Trail offers memorable
countryside experiences -- and the adventure
of sustained hiking.
The New Territories,
through which the MacLehose Trail runs, covers
the vast majority of the SAR's land area. Here
is Hong Kong's most varied - and finest - countryside.
The east coast, where the Trail begins, is deeply
indented and wild. The central mountains, which
the MacLehose Trail crosses, include many of
Hong Kong's highest peaks. And the western part,
where the Trail winds to its end, has impressive
Trail links eight Country Parks. Sai Kung East
Country Park (4,477 hectares), Sai Kung West
Country Park (3,000 hectares), Ma On Shan Country
Park (2,880 hectares), Lion Rock Country Park
(557 hectares), Kam Shan Country Park (337 hectares),
Shing Mun Country Park (1,400 hectares), Tai
Mo Shan Country Park (1,440 hectares), and Tai
Lam Country Park (5,370 hectares).
has ten Sections, varying from 5 to 16 kilometres
-- though most cover about 10 kilometres. The
Trail begins at Pak Tam Chung, winds through
Sai Kung Peninsula, then turns south to the Kowloon
hills. From Shing Mun it runs north towards Tai
Mo Shan, where it turns west and continues towards
Tuen Mun. Some Sections of the MacLehose Trail
are surfaced roads, but most follow hillside
paths. Hiking conditions are mostly easy to moderate,
with only a few sections needing strenuous effort.
The MacLehose Trail is well signposted, and Country
Park facilities are sited at its key points.
Trail can be reached by public transport, though
the starting areas of a few Sections are some distance
from transport drop-off points.