The hills of far Northwestern Hong Kong may not be so well known compared to other areas, but Lam Tsuen Country Park and its surrounds are as dramatic as any other HK landscape and ought to receive more recognition. The Country park is dominated by two primary peaks called Kai Kung Leng and Tai To Yan.
In my opinion Kai Kung Leng or “Rooster Ridge” is a more beautiful and attainable hiking trail, so I am going to focus on the hill of Kai Kung Leng here. But for those who are much more intrepid, then her sister peak Tai To Yan is also very spectacular and can be done instead of Kai Kung Leng, or in conjunction to create a twin peaks route.
Lunchtime or early afternoons make for an ideal time to set off if doing just the one hill in the cooler months, ensuring pleasant temperatures and sunset vistas from the summit (however leave first thing in the morning if wanting to do both hills). The route up is most easily accessed from Kam Sheung Road or Yuen Long MTR Stations by taxi, ask for Fung Kat Heung Road, the trailhead is located between a basketball court and the Miu Kwok Monastery. If opting to travel by public transport, then there is the 603 minibus you can catch from Yuen Long to the same starting point.
Having conquered this beast of a hill, take a perch and soak up the relaxing vibes. Few mountains in HK offer a 360-degree panorama of such variety; aside from the Tai Mo Shan massif, you’re the surveyor of all things in Western HK. On clearer days, the views of Shenzhen are jaw dropping. The sheer size and scale of this city becomes clearly evident from this vantage point, as one can see all the way from Lo Wu in the east to Nanshan in the west. To think that 40 years ago there was next to no development there almost defies logic.
back to civilization in an hour or two. Compared to the route up, the return trail is more direct in its descent. Once you reach Fan Kam Road, there is the 77K bus route and various minibuses that facilitate travel to the closest MTR stations of Sheung Shui and Yuen Long.
Kai Kung Leng and Tai To Yan are classic winter routes almost anyone can have a crack at, yet keep even the most seasoned of hikers honest. Although the Northwestern New Territories may not be especially well known amongst many hikers, the area has a few nice surprises for those who venture out. Its enchanted forests below and spectacular vistas above will no doubt leave one wanting to revisit for another go.