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near Tai O, Islands (Hong Kong)
The trail from Tai O to Lantau Peak, with the finish at the Pak Kung Au pass.
It starts in the centre of Tai O. The first 2.5 km is an easy walk by the Tai O bay, following the Lantau Trail. Shortly before the Nga Ying Kok campsite the trail turns left, departs the Lantau Trail, and starts climbing. This is mainly to enjoy the views of the Tai O and the Yi O bay on the other side of the hill. The initial ascent is quite steep (250m elevation gain on 1 km) and above the altitude of 200m there's barely any shade. The next few kilometers include consecutive, moderate ascents and descents. My trail overlaps with a section of Kueng Shan country trail and later with sections 5, 4 and 3 of the Lantau Trail. Between the Sham Wat Road and Ngong Ping this means following the road to Ngong Ping, it's the least pleasant section but there's no alternative. Ngong Ping is the only place on this trail where you can buy drinks or food, so prepare accordingly.
The climb from Ngong Ping to the Lantau Peak is the main one on the trail: 400m elevation gain on 1.2km. The descent from the Lantau Peak to Pak Kung Au is less extreme, but also quite steep.
My trail finishes at the Pak Kung Au pass. You can take a bus to Mui Wo (and then a ferry to Hong Kong Central) or a to Tung Chung (and MTR from there).
This is a full-day hike. I arrived in Tai O a day before and stayed overnight. Tai O is a lovely fishing village so I recommend spending some time there too.