"In the journey, sometimes we do not know if we could possibly go to places we plan in advance or not as we might fail to visit some places we would like to go. And maybe sometimes the promotion tickets are so tempted to miss out, thus, that is the reason how our unexpected trip to Hong Kong started"
After the first time backpack trip to Hong Kong, I have a chance to visit the Tai-o fishing village that is located on Lantau Island. And during the second day of my journey in this bustling land, I choose to head to the south of Hong Kong Island in order to explore whether there is "a nature trail still exist in Hong Kong or not" and as I am the minority of Thai's people that feel bored of shopping and eating lifestyle, yet love natural attractions more, hence, I would prefer to find some adventure in life with the different route of attractions in Hong Kong. I search for a nature trail on the mountains all over Hong Kong Island and lastly I find this route, the Dragon's Back Path.
Please follow my review if you would like to know more about this path.
"The trip to Hong Kong."
Journey to the Dragon's back Path. The nature that could breath.
Since I am staying in Tsim Sha Tsui area, therefore, my trip to the Dragon's back would start traveling by subway from Tsim Sha Tsui Station (red line) to Admiralty Station.
Admiralty Station (red line) and then switch to the blue line to Sheu Kei Wan Station (Total nine stations). Travel easy with an Octopus card.
Upon arrival at Shau Kei Wan Station, I forget to take a picture of the station; hence, I take a picture of this one instead then. Lol. Before going to the place that I am going to review next, I would like you all to prepare yourself as below instruction:
1. Do not take a lot of stuffs with you, just a small one is enough.
2. Bring an umbrella or a raincoat with you. Otherwise, you would be just like me. (I'll tell you all about it later, it's like the whole world crushing)
3. Carry just some drinking water with you.
4. Bring a snack or some energy drink with you.
5. Wear long sleeve shirt and hat along with apply sunblock.
6. Most importantly, go to the restroom to do your private business before because you could not come across any of the restroom afterward. I warn you.
When you reach at Shau Kei Wan Station, take Exit A3 and then you will see 7-11 (the best convenience store while we are traveling). At first, I want to buy a sandwich with some drink, though, once I grab the sandwich, one of the staff (old enough to be an aunt) speaks something in Chinese, I assume she is speaking with other clients then when I heard she said again, I then turn my head to see and found that she is pointing at me. I am quite stunned and think, am I doing anything wrong? But then she points to my sandwich and then point to the sign which indicates that buying sandwich with juice would have a discount. Ohhh!!Now I understand immediately.
When I am done with the payment, she asks me where am I going? I tell her that I am going to the Dragon's Back as I think everyone in Hong Kong would know where it is. Suddenly, my whole world collapses as she does not know the place (OMG!! If the Hong Kong people do not know this place so where am I heading to? However, I have read some reviews and guide book about it before, thus, I ask her that I am going to Shek O. Now, she instantly knows the place and guides me a direction to the bus stop, and then we say goodbye to each other. (Just only my second day of the journey, and I feel deeply touched with the generosity of Hong Kong people already)
When arriving at the subway station, take the Exit A3. Then you would see the bus station that has a lot of bus lines. Now you would have to look for the bus no.9 (Shek O line) to the Dragon's back.
And this is a picture that I take to confirm that I have come to the right place.
Then take bus no. 9 (Shek O line), you would pass through housing and building area and then the bus will begin to enter the dense trees area. Eh, or are we heading into the forest?
The route to the Dragon's Back is the same route to Shek O which is on the southern part of Hong Kong. The picture was taken during the ride at the upper floor of the bus, the driver drives pretty fast that I could not set my tripod.
The atmosphere along the way to the Dragon's back since Shau Kei Wan Station is quite gloomy like it is going to rain. Furthermore, I have not check the weather forecast before because I was reckless as yesterday when I was at Ngong Ping, it was a bright blue sky there. Hence, I even decided to leave my umbrella and raincoat in the room. Let's see in the end of this review how will my fate goes.
As you could see that some of Hong Kong people still don't know where Dragon's back is, therefore, when you ask for direction, you would need to tell that you are going to Shek O instead and they will understand right away (In my mind, I think that some of Hong Kong people still do not truly know the place, so how come I can know this place?). As I travel during the weekday, thus, at first I think that I might be only me who come to do the hiking today. However, when I am on the entrance way up to the hill, I have met other 3 people there. Hence, in total as I could see, there would be total four of us today which are one couple, a teenager and me.
Ps. For a trip to the Dragon's back, take a bus no.9 (bus line to Shek O) and drop off at the To Tei Wan stop. Why should we get off at this stop?, I would explain later. Anyway, you also can get off before To Tai Wan stop but…> _ < "(the route would be pretty steep since the way up).
Once you get off the bus, it's not like everyone would start hiking right away. Everyone including me, is busy preparing stuff to provide the necessary things for the convenience when hiking so that we could handle stuff easily. I remember that everyone takes around 15 minutes to get ready. (Actually, I am waiting for someone to go up first)
Around the way up to the Dragon's back, it is gloomy and somehow looks scary. Around the area, there are some trash bins and on the right side there is a restroom provided as well. Though, I suggest that you should better use the toilet at the Sheu Kei wan station as the toilet condition here is not quite clean.
During the walk, when you look to below area, you will see the city that located below and when you walk a little bit farther, you would also see the rock border blocks the way. During this time, the sun begins to shine and the sky is quite clear.
Don't be surprised by the weather during the walk up to the hill here as one minute is seemed sunny but another is cloudy. In Thailand, it is believed that if you plant the lemon grass it will not rain, however, in Hong Kong I guess if we do that it would be a rain storm instead.
Walking along the way, I see the direction sign and suddenly I get confuse, my brain starts to shut down and do not know where to go. But then again the heaven is on my side as I glance down and see something.
Here it is, I have found the sign to the Dragon's back right here (but why was it set too low?). Now, let's go and walk straight up, then you will see the Laem Phrom Thep Gosh, I am in Hong Kong, not Phuket, Thailand. Down below, it is what they called Shek O.
When you reach the point where you could see the Shek O, there would be a two-way junction, right and left. Nonetheless, four of us take the right turn without thinking.
Walking for awhile, I have a feeling that I should reach the peak of the Dragon's back that is called the Shek O peak already. However, why am I not there yet? Suddenly, there is a couple of Hong Kong people open the Google Map to check the route, I then went to ask them as well and at last we realize that we went in a wrong direction. From the two-way junction, we should take a left turn instead but we all take the right turn. Now that we already lost, then let use this opportunity to take some picture of the scenery around here instead. This somehow is the coolest part of losing a way.
Like I have said in the first place that we have turned to the wrong direction, thus, we have to reroute our way back. But then again after do not know how many hills we have passed, it would be a long way back. Huh!!
This hill in front of me (above picture) if we continue walking in the wrong direction, we would reach this hill but goodbye, I am not going to see you. I would go back to my real goal, the hill that I expect to meet at the first place.
Even though, we have lost but we still have a lot of spirits with us. As four of us use this unfortunate circumstance to be a great opportunity to take the picture of these area for a good memories. We exchange in taking photo for all of us (For me, I would take only the view picture) Lastly, we follow the couple to head back to the right direction we should be in the first place.
Although I have to walk such a long way back, yet I have a chance to take some awesome pictures in other areas. Now, the sky is widely open with the strong sunlight that could make us see the city in the below area clearer.
After walk back to the same way, now I see the direction sign so let's do the guessing which way should we go? Of course, I have to choose the TAI TAM GAP. If we choose the TO TEI WAN,it will lead us to a bus stop at the entrance way. Now, we just go straight and then we would reach the peak of the Dragon's back.
After wandering for such a long time, finally we reach the highest point of the Dragon's back which is called SHEK O PEAK. This place is considered the peak view point at Shek O and it is the ideal place to take a rest and enjoy the panorama view of Shek O, Tai Long Wan and Tung Lung Island.
At Shek O Peak area, there would be a bench to sit down and relax as well. However, I am not going to sit as right now the sun is pretty strong and the bench would be terribly hot. However, I think if you come during the winter or in the morning time, this point would be a beautiful point to take photos as you could overlook to the wide sea in front of you.
As we move forward and then look backward, I am surprised "How many hills that I have come across?" I have never do the hiking even in Thailand, this is the first time and it is in other country.
Sightseeing around this place a bit and then I am heading back. Once I look down below, my feeling is the same as the time that I start climbing up.
OMG!!! It seems like a long way to go. Anyway, the stairs of the descent way are pretty steep so be careful.
When walking down, you would see the direction sign and when I am in my half way back, I take a short cut route to the downtown by using TAI TAM GP route. This way has the same distance the route to as Shek O street (Shek O street is the street that we get off from the bus). After that, I take some time to get back and the worst part is that the rain suddenly falls down so hard during that time. Therefore, I do not take any picture since then as I have to walk back to the bus stop. While I am facing the rain, I meet with one Hong Kong family which includes father, mother, son and daughter. They are walking up the hill under the rain so I went to have a little chat with them about the weather (actually, I want to avoid the rain for a bit) We chat in a heavy rain, and I know from them that the T-storm blows toward Hong Kong today, thus, it is raining pretty hard.Then, I excuse to leave and head to the downtown next.
How to get to the Dragon's back :
Finally, I would like to thank the journey that makes me stronger. Moreover, Thank you to all the readers who follow my travel review. And for the next trip, you would meet with my new review to Taiwan, which would be my second time to Taiwan. I would assure you that this trip would be a fun like my first trip. Now, at this moment I would like to say goodbye before and see you next time.
"Because life is a journey"