Not easily accessible and largely uninhabited, Hong Kong's northeastern villages are ideal field locations for studying the heritage, economic
transitions and ecological changes of the country's rural districts. Now as before, this "back garden" offers tranquil settings, rustic hamlets,
verdant forests and delightful scenery.

We begin our hike in Luk Keng - less than 30 minutes from the railway linking Hong Kong with China proper. Located at the shores of Starling
Inlet, Luk Keng is a close to the mainland you can get without a written permission from the Commissioner of Police... During the first part of
the hike, we will be able to see (and even hear) the outer suburbs of the rapidly developing Chinese boarder city of Shen Zhen. However, it is
not long before we put today behind us and dive into history...

According to ancestral records, the Yeung family first settled in Kuk Po Lo Wai in 1672, earning a good income from farming and fishing. Rice
was grown in terraces on slopes and marshland was drained. On the higher slopes, fruit trees provided another source of income. In the
early 1950's, the population had grown to more than 500.

Sadly, since the onset of industrial development at the end of the 1960's, Kuk Po - as all other northeastern villages - has seen its population
dwindle. A mere handful of people now live in the area and many buildings have been abandoned and are falling into disrepair. Walking
around these villages is, however, quite fascinating and offers good photo opportunities.

After Kuk Po, we will tackle our only real climb of the day as we make our way over Fan Shui Au to the ghost towns of Mui Tsz Lam and Kop
Tong, before we reach the impressive old Hakka village of
Lai Chi Wo. Lai Chi Wo is also the home of an ancient mangrove forest. With its
network of interweaving buttress roots, the Coastal Heritiera makes for a very intriguing sight. Many trees are so large that it takes two
people to hug, while some roots grow to chest height.

From Lai Chi Wo, it is just a short walk past more fish ponds and through old woodland to the tiny village of Sam A Tsuen, where we end our
hike with a delicious Chinese lunch at what is one of Hong Kong's most remote restaurants.

After lunch - and a swim? - we head for the bus stop by speedboat, sailing through the quiet protected waters of the Yan Chau Tong Marine
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Hike Summary
Click on the map
and check the
red line
for an idea of where
this hike will take you.
Click here for an idea of where this outing will take you...
10.5 km
4 out of 10
Approx. Altitude Change:
Gain: 325 metres
Loss: 325 metres
incl. taxi to trail-head & boat ride
Highest Point:
170 metres (Fan Shui Au)
    *other transport & lunch not included
Time Spent on Trail:
5.5 hours
Walking: 3.75 hours + Breaks: 1.75 hours
Meeting Time & Place:
9:15 am
at Fan Ling Railway Station
Finishing Time & Place:
4:30 pm
at Wong Shek Pier
Price for this hike as a Private Event on request
  or 5:30 pm  
at Diamond Hill Railway Station.
Food & Drink:
Snack stops at Kuk Po (3.5 km) and Mui Tsz Lam or Kop Tong (7 km).
Lunch at restaurant in Sam A Wan (10.5 km) -
not included.
Note 1:
While there are no beaches along this route, it would be possible to go for a refreshing swim off the secluded
pier in Sam A at the end of the walk, so consider bringing swimwear, reef shoes and a towel. Showers available
at the restaurant.  
Note 2:
Due to the cost of renting the boat and to its limited seating, this outing requires a minimum of 6 participants,
while being restricted to no more than
9 participants.
Note 3:
For the full version of this hike which doesn't include the speedboat ride, please click here.
Kuk Po School and village, Starling Inlet, New Territories, Hong Kong
Mui Tsz Lam village and view over Yan Chau Tong...
Flora and fauna in Plover Cove Cuntry Park...
... exploring Hong Kong's other side...
Hansen's Hikes
by Hansen's Events
Michael Hansen, helping you explore Hong Kong's other side...
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Participants on all Hansen's Events' hikes and rides take part entirely at their own risk. By joining any of our events all participants are automatically seen to
have agreed to have entered into a disclaimer which exonerates the outing leaders and the organizers from any personal or public responsibility whatsoever
and for any claims, injuries or damages arising thereof.
Due to work commitments, holidays and other personal issues,
Hansen's Hikes & Rides has decided to
SUSPEND all operations until further notice.

Apologizing for any inconvenience caused,
we hope to partially resume our outings towards the end of the year.