The slightly cooler weather in Hong Kong means a welcome return to the hiking season. To kick things off, a weeks ago I went on a relatively easy walk in Plover Cove Country Park, located in the northeastern New Territories. While we didn’t summit any peaks (it was still plenty hot outside), it was still a lengthy hike totaling some 14 km overall. On the way, we stopped for congee, checked out a marine reserve, and visited an old Hakka community.
Starting at Wu Kau Tang village, we follow a stream as it winds its way through the dense forest towards Sam A Wan bay. As we approach the shoreline, patches of mangroves and seagrass dominate the shallow waters. This area is part of Yan Chau Tong Marine Park, an important ecological habitat for marine life in Plover Cove.
About a third of the way through the hike we make a stop at Sam A Tsuen, at a local eatery to sample its famous chicken congee. The rest stop is apparently quite popular with hikers as it was completely full – helped by the fact that there aren’t any other food options in the area. And the congee? Well it was actually pretty good, but nothing too special. A nice place for a rest, though.
We continue onwards, heading north towards Lai Chi Wo. This is an old Hakka village that seems inhabited – although today we didn’t see anyone there, just a few local dogs. The village is well maintained but it was a bit eerie, and with the dogs barking and nipping at us, we didn’t stick around for long. At this point it was getting dark so we had to pick up the pace.
We then head west and follow the trail slightly north through the park towards the shore of the Starling Inlet. By now it was dusk and we were navigating with our headlamps. On the way, we passed 5-6 abandoned Hakka villages in various states of disrepair. I made a mental note to revisit this area one day to explore further (as you probably know, I’m fascinated by old villages). The rest of the trail followed the shoreline where we could see Shenzhen across the water.