The final stage of the Lantau trail runs from Pui O to Mui Wo and is 9km long. It took us about 3 hours to hike it and it was one of the nicest stages of the whole Lantau trail.
The hike starts in Pui O village, opposite the Police Reporting Centre and just before the school. The blue container for the police looks like it has stood there for many years now, the newspapers sticking in the window were already many years old. Maybe in a quiet place like Pui O there is hardly any crime so a police post is not needed?
We followed the newly completed road between what were once productive paddy fields, but now lie fallow, and crossed a bridge to reach the village of Ham Tin. There were a few shops and restaurants, but mainly residential houses.
Some really big, three-storey village houses, recently built with large gardens and big cars parked in front of them. At first glance the location does not seem that inviting, but we walked along the winding river and then looked back to the Lantau Peak and both agreed, it is a beautiful view.
The estuary is home to a number of birds and some mangrove trees. We even saw some fish in the water, so it must be fairly clean. In the mud poodles at the side we could see some footsteps from the cattle, but there were no water buffalos in sight when we walked through the village.
At the seafront is a beautiful and very scenic beach – especially with the hills in the background. There were only very few people here on a Saturday, which was a shame – it is such a nice area to explore.
We walked to the seafront temple in Pui O and took some pictures, before turning inland on the Chi Ma Wan Road. Here the trail starts climbing up hill for 500 metres, but after the first steep slope it eases off. We walked under tree cover until the path took us through some low scrubland.
After that, the biggest climb started – it felt like 500 steps steep up hill. Monica and I both took our time to catch our breaths.
Very embarrassingly we were both overtaken by three very fit bikers – they were not riding their bikes, but actually carrying them uphill at a speed faster than the two of us on our own feet.
They briefly greeted us and off they were. Crazy fit people!
The highest point is not very spectacular as such – but the view is amazing. We looked over Chi Ma Wan and the lush vegetation surrounding us.
From there on the hike goes through a forest and we met a new friend for the rest of the hike – a beautiful husky dog with a brown and blue eye. He was there with his owner, but the dog liked to run in front of us and wait for us to catch up and then run away again. We walked faster than his owner, so the dog walked us until we reached the end of the hike. A lovely four-year old husky called ‘Damian’ – I just wonder what he does in the summer when it gets too hot for him. Poor guy, a husky should not have to live in such a hot and humid climate.
Finally, Silvermine Bay (aka Mui Wo) came into sight and we saw the ferries arriving and leaving the harbour. Some of the smaller ferries only go to Cheng Chau, Peng Chau and Discovery Bay while the other, larger ones, go to Central Hong Kong.
Finally, after a hike that felt long (remember we did stage 12 together with stage 11, so we’ve been hiking for 4 hours straight) we saw the harbour of Mui Wo.
We climbed down the last steps and reached the penultimate marker of the Lantau trail – but unfortunately we made our way to the waterfront and missed the final Lantau trail marker. So not sure if we have to come back again!