Islands Nature Heritage Trail opens on Lantau

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    HK Govt press release:

    In collaboration with the Islands District Council, the Agriculture, Fisheries & Conservation Department has set up the new Islands Nature Heritage Trail to help promote nature-based tourism. The 20km trail is divided into four sections – Mui Wo, Peng Chau, Tai O and Ngong Ping. The Mui Wo Section, 7km in length from Pak Mong in Tung Chung to Mui Wo, is the first to open and takes about three hours to complete.


    Spanning Lantau from north to south, the Mui Wo Section connects the Hong Kong Olympic Trail and Lo Fu Tau Country Trail, where ancient villages such as Pak Mong, Ngau Kwu Long, Tai Ho and Pak Ngan Heung are located. A series of new interpretive panels in Chinese, English and Japanese have been installed at key locations, bringing to life dozens of stories about the ecology and history of Mui Wo. Hikers can learn more about the area's history while also enjoying the natural scenery along the way.


    To tie in with the opening of the Mui Wo Section the department has launched a new book series on Mui Wo, with support from the Islands District Council and Friends of Country Parks. Apart from introducing the history and scenic beauty of Mui Wo, the book also features interviews about the origin and the lives of indigenous villagers. The book was co-written by retired country park ranger Pang Cheung-chiu and experienced hiking expert Lau Chun-wai and is now available at major bookstores for $40.


    To enhance support services for country park visitors the department introduced a new iPhone application Enjoy Hiking. Users can download the application free of charge from the website.


    Information on hiking trails and routes in various country parks is available. Depending on their interests, physical fitness and experience, users can select suitable routes and enjoy hiking in the Hong Kong countryside. The application also features the real-time Google map function indicating the user's location.

    The trail seems a great idea. Yet this Mui Wo section surely doesn't include some of best nature on Lantau: woodland not so great, and omits the wetlands, such as wetlands at Mui Wo, as well as Pui O and Shap Long (Chi Ma Wan). Maybe Tai O stretch will cover more wetland.

    Hopefully the guide will explain that the "natural scenery along the way" has been greatly changed by man: without humans, could be a lot of sub-tropical forest that would greatly affect the scenery, including by reducing views.

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