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The Lion’s Rock Hike in Hong Kong is epic.
Try searching for the best hiking trails in Hong Kong and you’ll see right away that everyone’s talking about the Dragon’s Back Trail. It’s a beautiful trail. That’s true. Having done both of them I can confirm, that both are well worth the effort. Both trails are easy to get to. Both offer great views.
However, if you can do only one of them, go for the Lion’s Rock Hike!
At the same I would highly recommend you to do both of them. Start early in the morning, and you’ll manage to do the two in a single day. You’ll be tired at the end of the day. But you’ll be happy. Very, very happy.
Wanna learn more? Then let’s dig in!
Here is my Lion’s Rock Hike guide.
1. The Lion’s Rock Hike, Hong Kong: Basics
This trail is a part of the MacLehose Trail (stage 5).
STARTING POINT: Lion Rock Country Park Entrance;
TIME: 4-5 hours, if you do only the Lion’s Rock Hike (including time to get to and from the MTR station). 5-7 hours, if you do some side trails. It took my 5.5 hours to do what I did. More on this below!
DIFFICULTY: easy / moderate, includes a lot of walking on stairs and rocks;
TIPS: for the best views go very early or in the afternoon (3-4 hours before sunset), bring enough water with you. Spring and autumn is the best time for hiking in Hong Kong. When it’s neither too hot or cold, not humid and cloudy. Check the weather information online.
The trail is located in the Lion Rock Country Park.
The trail is located in the Lion Rock Country Park, Hong Kong.
It’s easily accessible by public transportation. Just take a metro (MTR) to the Wong Tai Sin station and walk. It’s gonna be some 30 minutes of walking, mostly uphill.
OPTION 2: Start from Lion Rock Park Barbecue Sites. Take MTR to Lok Fu station and walk to the starting point.
OPTION 3: Start from Hung Mui Kuk Barbecue Area. Take MTR to Tai Wai station, take exit C, walk to the starting point. You’ll be passing by Amah Rock first. I did go to Amah Rock as well, but after getting to Lion’s rock first. You can do the same way as I did.
Where Does the Trail Finishes?
There are many options to choose from.
You can always simply walk back to the starting point.
A slightly more interesting option would be to walk to the Reunification Pavilion, Lion Rock Country Park and take a trail going down the mountain. Or to continue walking past the Reunification Pavilion to the Beacon Hill Viewing Point. And a little bit more until you end up on a tarmac road. From there you simply follow the road down the mountain. Nearest metro station in both situations will be either Kowloon Tong or Lok Fu.
A much more interesting option – take the Amah Rock hike and return back to the starting point by taking the Wilson trail. That’s on the other side of the same mountain. This is the option I chose.
Continue reading to learn where exactly did I go and how can you do the same.
2. The Lion’s Rock Hike (+Side Trails): My Experience
Shortly after you leave the MTR station, the road starts going up the hill.
It’s very steep at places.
And it’s a rather long walk until the starting point of the trail. That long that you even start thinking – is this tarmac road going all the way to the Lion’s Rock peak?
Then you reach the gates.
You start going up.
At first it goes only up.
And you walk on the stairs.
But soon it changes. Further on it’s a mix of walking up and down, walking on the stairs and trail.
The first views of Hong Kong do not disappoint.
Walk until you see the Beacon Hill sign. Up until then it’s only a single trail.
Follow the sign!
Here everything’s easy.
You know the sign you need to look at.
Turn to the Lion Rock Peak. It’s very steep from here.
If you get tired on the way there are few places where to stop at.
Stop there also if you would like to see what does the mountain look from the other side.
Here is what you can expect.
Do the final push and you’ll be rewarded!
Continue a little bit further, and you’ll reach the peak.
The Lion’s Rock peak.
Where to Next
You can turn around or you can continue the hike further.
This is what I did.
I went on until the Reunification Pavilion. Just take the other trail (not the one you came on) down from the Lion’s Rock peak and follow it. Until you see this shelter.
From there I walked to the Beacon Hill Viewing Point.
And a little more, until the tarmac road. I did walk a bit further and turned around.
To walk back to the Reunification Pavilion.
And to take the side trail to Amah Rock from there.
Shortly before Amah Rock there is a sign showing a way to Lion Rock Tunnel Road.
Go first to Amah Rock.
It’s only around 5 minutes from here.
You will return to this sign later, to continue walking around the mountain.
Now turn around and walk back.
Take the path going to the Lion Rock Tunnel Road.
By doing so after a while you will end up on the path like this.
Turn to the right and walk.
Until at one point you see stairs going up the mountain.
Follow the stairs!
All in all it’s an easy walk so far. But it’s an extra hour or so. So you might be getting tired by now.
Follow the biggest trail!
When in doubts, do like I did. Check the map on your phone. Google Maps has this trail marked down.
You are already on the Wilson trail.
Some more stairs.
And more stairs.
Until you end up on a tarmac road. Turn to the left here.
It’s only 5-10 minutes until you will reach the starting point. Congratulations!
You can easily spend all day hiking in these mountains.
3. How to Get to Lion’s Rock Hike Starting Point
How to go to Lion Rock Country Park?
Whichever starting point you choose, it’s easy to get to the trail by public transportation.
All options will include at least some 20-30 minutes of walking at the end. Alternatively you can take a taxi to make it to the trail faster.
If you are going to choose the most popular starting point (like I did), take a metro (MTR) to the Wong Tai Sin station. Leave the station via exit B3. Follow the map and walk. It’s gonna be some 30 minutes of walking. Mostly uphill.
If you enjoy Hong Kong as much as I do, I have a good news for you. The area near the MTR station is very lively and interesting to explore. If you like temples, visit Wong Tai Sin temple and Temple Hill Fat Jong Temple. Wong Tai Sin temple is situated right next to the MTR station, the other temple is a bit further, but right next to the road leading to the starting point.
4. Where to Stay in Hong Kong
VALUE FOR MONEY / CHEAP – Yesinn @YMT
A very nice and stylish hostel in Kowloon. Only a short walking distance away from 2 metro stations and a busy night market. There are a lot of restaurants and shops in the area.
They offer both cheap bunk beds (rooms are with en-suite bathrooms) and private rooms.
Looking for something easier? Something you could with with kids? Try the Cheung Chau Hike.
Have you done the Lion Rock Hike in Hong Kong? What was your experience?
Book Your Trip Like a PRO
1. Book Your Flight
2. Book Your Accommodation
Booking.com, Agoda.com and Airbnb. I use Booking and Agoda at least a dozen times a year, and Airbnb – when looking for a long-term stay. My best tip is to ALWAYS compare the price. Sometimes the same hotel is cheaper on Booking.com, other times – on Agoda. Always compare the price!
3. Buy Your Travel Insurance
World Nomads and SafetyWings are two companies I can recommend. World Nomads offers some extra benefits, that will be important for those doing some higher risk activities, while SafetyWings is significantly cheaper. SafetyWings is only $9.25 / week.