The Kowloon Reservoir Hike is an easy hike around the Kowloon Group of Reservoirs and Shek Lei Pui Reservoir in Kam Shan Country Park.
The trail passes the four reservoirs and their dams, running along the shores, and crossing streams that deliver water to them.
And because Kowloon Reservoirs are located in Kam Shan Country Park, that can only mean there’s plenty of wildlife to admire, especially macaques and wild boars!
About the Kowloon Reservoir Hike
The Kowloon Reservoir Hike is a 5 km loop across four reservoirs – Kowloon Reservoir, Kowloon Byewash Reservoir, Kowloon Reception Reservoir (commonly referred to as the Kowloon Group of Reservoirs) and Shek Lei Pui Reservoir.
Other than a short incline at the start and one at the end, the hike is almost exclusively on flat terrain. This means you can attempt the hike even on a hot and humid day.
So, if you’re a fan of long walks along reservoirs in Hong Kong, you’ll enjoy the Kowloon Reservoir Hike.
Here’s a quick aerial view of the Kowloon Reservoirs and Kam Shan Country Park to get you excited!Subscribe to my YouTube channel
A quick word about macaques before we start
Kam Shan Country Park is famous for its macaques. The country park is their home and you’re a visitor.
Please refrain from getting too close to them or feeding them. As long as you don’t bother them, they won’t bother you.
They’re used to human company and won’t do a thing if you mind your own business.
The Kowloon Reservoir Hike starts at the intersection of Golden Hill Road and Tai Po Road.
The easiest way to arrive here is by bus number KMB 72 (between Tai Po and Cheung Sha Wan) or KMB 81 (between Wo Che and Jordan, West Kowloon Station). The Tai Po Road divides Lion Rock Country Park from Kam Shan Country Park.
Depending on which side you arrive from, make sure that you’re on the side of the road with the toilet (the Kam Shan Country Park side). Walk towards Golden Hill Road and turn onto it. This is the start of the hike.
Opposite Golden Hill Road is Piper’s Hill Road, the entrance to the Eagle’s Nest Nature Trail and Beacon Hill Hike. If you enjoy stunning views of Kowloon, return to the Eagle’s Nest Nature Trail on a clear day!
To the Kowloon Reservoir Dam
Walk down Golden Hill Road, which also happens to be Maclehose Trail Section 6.
At the bottom of the road is a small bridge, at the nook of the Kowloon Reservoir. Underneath, the excess water from the Kowloon Reservoir flows into the Kowloon Byewash Reservoir.
From the bridge, it’s a short walk to the Kowloon Reservoir Dam.
The Kowloon Reservoir, completed in 1910, is the first reservoir in the New Territories of Hong Kong. The dam has a unique curved outline design.
From on top of the dam, you can admire the Kowloon Reservoir on one side and the Kowloon Byewash Reservoir on the other.
Take a moment to admire the still water and click photos.
Next, cross the dam and walk towards the pavilion and the entrance to the Kam Shan Tree Walk.
Towards Shek Lei Pui Reservoir
Feel free to take a quick break at the pavilion at the start of the Kam Shan Tree Walk.
The Kam Shan Tree Walk is an 830-metre family-friendly track that showcases the various types of trees in Kam Shan Country Park.
But to continue to Shek Lei Pui Reservoir, walk uphill n Golden Hill Road for another 80-100 metres.
Just before the bend, notice a flight of steps to the left. Follow the signs for the Shek Lei Pui Reservoir Jogging Trail and climb the steps.
After the steps follow the narrow trail on a gentle incline.
The trail runs parallel to the road below before turning left to run alongside the catchwater drain.
Continue walking along the catchwater drain till the trail splits in two. At this point, which path should you take?
Shek Lei Pui Reservoir Mini Dam Wall
Up ahead is the smaller Shek Lei Pui Reservoir Dam Wall and the path splits towards either end of it.
The path on the left reaches the end of the Shek Lei Pui Reservoir Jogging Trail and is a short walk to the Shek Lei Pui Reservoir Main Dam. This path is a shortcut to the dam and the next reservoir.
The path on the right reaches the start of the Shek Lei Pui Reservoir Jogging Trail. And from there, it’s a 1.5 km walk to reach the Shek Lei Pui Reservoir Dam.
We took the path on the right, around Shek Lei Pui Reservoir.
Around Shek Lei Pui Reservoir
The Shek Lei Pui Reservoir Jogging Trail is a flat 1.7 km trail around Shek Lei Pui Reservoir.
At the start of the trail, the Shek Lei Pui Reservoir Dam appears deceptively close on the opposite side.
And the trail remains scenic with the reservoir within touching distance. The still water is visible just beyond the trees and shrubs.
But as the trail continues, the reservoir moves further away. Fortunately, there are a couple of other attractions along the way that make this trail worthwhile.
Depending on the time of the year, there are multiple streams around the reservoir to admire. These streams carry water to the reservoir and are quite picturesque.
The first stream
Along the north shore of the Shek Lei Pui Reservoir are a couple of nooks. And each nook is accompanied by a stream flowing into the reservoir.
The first stream appears 400 metres after the start of the trail.
When we arrived, water was gushing with quite a force into the reservoir! It made for quite a photo opportunity!
And what was even better was that we had the stream all to ourselves for the entire time we were there.
But after we had done admiring the stream, we realised that we weren’t the only ones at the stream.
There was a large group of macaques who were swimming at the mouth of the stream in the reservoir who decided to scare us!
The second and third streams
After the first stream, the trail heads south before turning back up north again.
The impressive views of the reservoir continue along the trail.
And after another 450 metres of walking, the trail arrives at the next nook with another stream.
At this stream, the water flows down a cliff, into a shallow pool, before continuing into the reservoir.
The pool of water set against the mini-waterfall is a pretty sight!
And from this nook, you also get your first glimpse of the views of the city. But more on that later.
After the second stream, the third stream is only 200 metres away. But unfortunately, it’s not much to look at.
After another 300 metres, the trail arrives at a small outdoor seating area. Just after the seating area, the trail splits in two. At this point, turn left towards the fence.
The section with the fence is directly opposite the start of the Shek Lei Pui Reservoir Jogging Trail. And from here, you can not only admire the reservoir but also Lion Rock in the distance.
Cross the cleared area with the fence and keep walking for another 120 metres to the main dam. But just as the trees clear, the views dramatically change!
Shek Lei Pui Reservoir Dam
Construction of the Shek Lei Pui Reservoir began in 1923 and was completed in 1925. The two dams and the valve houses at the centre of the dam are listed as Grade II historic buildings.
The dam offers views of both sides of Hong Kong. On the one side, is the calm still water, surrounded by green hills. But turn around to admire the views of the city that are a contrast to the other side!
And the Shek Lei Pui Reservoir Dam stands between these two contrasting views!
If you don’t feel like continuing to the next reservoir, you can simply cross the dam and continue walking to Shek Lei Pui Reservoir Dam Jogging Trail and complete the loop.
But to continue on the Kowloon Reservoir Hike, follow the sign for the Kowloon Reception Reservoir.
To The Kowloon Reception Reservoir
The Kowloon Reception Reservoir is straightforward, downhill walk from the Shek Lei Pui Reservoir Dam.
The trail is a bit rougher than the jogging track, but that shouldn’t be an issue.
At the start of the descent, the views of the city remain visible. But as the trail descends below the tree line, those views disappear.
When the trail reaches the reservoir, turn right to continue the Kowloon Reservoirs Hike. Similar to the previous reservoir, the left turn is a shortcut to reach the end of the trail.
Around the Kowloon Reception Reservoir
Just like the Shek Lei Pui Reservoir, the trail around the Kowloon Reception Reservoir is also labelled as a jogging trail. And both trails share many similarities.
The trail around the Kowloon Reception Reservoir is a similar length of 1.6 km and is also flat, shaded, and easy.
It runs alongside the reservoir with views of the water and access to the shore.
And although there are three streams that flow into this reservoir too, they’re not as picturesque as those at the previous reservoir.
To the first stream
400 metres from the start, the trail reaches a nook with a stream flowing into the reservoir.
Make sure to cross the stream and continue around the bend. Don’t take the steps to the right.
To the second stream
After the first nook, the trail continues along the reservoir before turning towards another nook.
This time there is a small pedestrian bridge over the stream. Unfortunately, this stream was dry when we visited.
After the bridge, turn left and continue on the Kowloon Reception Reservoir Jogging Trail.
To the third stream
The trail remains relatively uneventful till it returns closer to the shore. And then it turns back towards another small stream.
The third stream flows under the path and onto the rocks below.
After the stream, the trail continues on a quieter section before returning to the shore once more.
This area probably has the best views of the Kowloon Reception Reservoir.
Continue walking for a short distance before the trail arrives at a fork.
Take the path on the left to step onto the dam wall. The paved path on the right heads down to the Shek Lei Pui Water Treatment Works.
To The Kowloon Reception Reservoir Dam
The top of the Kowloon Reception Reservoir Dam is just wide enough to fit two people.
Despite its narrow wall, the views of the reservoir from the dam are quite beautiful.
Unfortunately, because the dam is located downhill, there are no views of the city from here.
To Cheung Yuen Road
To continue on the Kowloon Reservoir Hike, cross the dam and continue on the trail.
Shortly onto the trail, there is a flight of steps to the right. The steps head up to a picnic area but continue following the trail.
Further ahead, the trail becomes slightly narrower as it approaches a fence.
The fence signals the end of The Kowloon Reception Reservoir Jogging Trail as the flight of steps ahead reaches the start and end points of the jogging trail.
To continue on the Kowloon Reservoir Hike, exit the Kowloon Reception Reservoir Jogging Trail onto Cheung Yuen Road.
To The Kowloon Byewash Reservoir Dam
As you walk down the steps onto Cheung Yuen Road, turn left.
Follow the road downhill for approximately 150-metres to the Kowloon Byewash Reservoir Dam.
This is the fourth and final dam on the Kowloon Reservoir Hike.
From on top of the dam, you can admire the elongated Kowloon Byewash Reservoir and even the Kowloon Reservoir Dam.
The Kowloon Reservoir Dam was the first dam on the hike and now you’ve almost come a full circle.
Finish the hike at Tai Po Road
With the Kowloon Byewash Reservoir, it’s a short distance to end the hike.
Continue on Cheung Yuen Road as it starts its incline immediately after crossing the dam.
As the trail begins its gentle incline, it runs parallel to Tai Po Road.
Macaques and wild boars also make a return on this section of the trail. We hadn’t seen them since the first stream at Shek Lei Pui Reservoir.
Cheung Yuen Road finally curves right and ends next to the toilet and bus stop at Tai Po Road.
Kowloon and Shek Lei Pui Reservoir Hike
We hope you enjoyed our detailed guide to the Kowloon Reservoir and Shek Lei Pui Reservoir Hike. It’s honestly a fun, easy hike that’s suitable for anyone who doesn’t mind macaques and wild boars on their trails!
If you’re looking for another reservoir hike in Kowloon, why not walk around Shing Mun Reservoir or hike from Lower Shing Mun Reservoir to Upper Shing Mun Reservoir?
I also recommend Maclehose Trail Section 6, which covers the Shing Mun War Relics Trail. The hike starts at Shing Mun Reservoir and ends at Kowloon Reservoir and passes all the incredible war tunnels that are still in perfect condition!
But if you prefer a more relaxing reservoir hike, we recommend the Ho Pui Reservoir Family Walk or the Tai Tam Reservoir Circular Walk. There are plenty of reservoir hikes and walk in Hong Kong to explore!
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