Asia Pacific

Hong Kong, China

A Guide to The Best Places to Run on Hong Kong Island, Kowloon, and other Area Trails

Hong Kong is one of the world’s busiest and financial centers and commercial ports. The setting is spectacular, with Victoria Peak overlooking the South China Sea and the bay that separates Hong Kong Island, with its towering skyscapers, from Kowloon and the mainland. The city might be crazily busy and congested, but there are some great running options in Hong Kong.

The “go to” running option is Bowen Rd., a 4 km trail easily accessible from Central, with great city and water views. The other “must do” run is the Peak Circle Trail, which is part a great network of trails on Victoria Peak, including the longer Hong Kong Trail. If staying at one of the hotels in Central, there is some pleasant running along the water in either direction of the Star Ferry terminal. Running on the Happy Valley racetrack is one of the more unique runs out there. Across the bay in Kowloon, there are two good waterfront runs, including in the area of the former airport. If you have time for an excursion, there is fabulous running on Lantau Island (also the location of the Hong Kong airport), accessible by ferry. Runners who enjoy hills and trails will find particularly good options in Hong Kong.  Note: If you’d like to have a guided running experience in Hong Kong, we highly recommend our affiliate partner Go! Running Tours

A bit of geographic orientation: most visitors to Hong Kong will stay on Hong Kong Island. “Central” refers to the business district where most of the hotels and offices are located. Most of our running options are accessible from Central or the Mid-Levels. The “mainland”, also known as Kowloon, is a short ferry ride away.There are some good running options there, but except for the immediate  waterfront runs, they take some getting to.

If staying on the island, it is very unlikely you will have a car. There is an extensive transportation system, including the hyper-efficient MTR subway, buses and trams. The famous Star Ferry runs between HKI and the mainland, and there are ferries to other islands. The Peak Tram gets you to Victoria Peak, though it’s also possible to run/walk/hike to the peak.

We would like to add our thanks to the Namban Rengo running group in Tokyo for their tremendous help in connecting us with their network, who advised us on great running spots in Hong Kong.

Editor's Picks

Some of our favorite runs in Hong Kong, China

Bowen Road

The signature run in Hong Kong. Carved out into the side of a hill, this relatively flat,... more...

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  • Weather & Climate
  • Where To Stay
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  • Events

Bowen Road

Hong Kong, China

The signature run in Hong Kong. Carved out into the side of a hill, this relatively flat, paved path runs about 4k one-way, providing great views of Central and Wanchai just below.
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Hong Kong Trail

Hong Kong, China

A wonderful run/walk/hike trail that runs a total of 50 km, consisting of eight ‘sections”, from Victoria Peak to Tai Long Wan. The first two sections, totaling about 5 miles one-way, are the most suitable for runners.
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Lantau Island

Hong Kong, China

Our guide is focused on Honk Kong Island. If you have time, running on Lantau Island is spectacular — but it’s a day trip. Best options are the Lantau Trail and Discovery Bay.
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Trail Running in Hong Kong

Hong Kong, China

Despite the incredible density, some 40% of Hong Kong is protected parks. There are some spectacular trail running opportunities — the Hong Kong Trail on HKI, and four long-distance trails on other islands and the New Territories.
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Bowen Road

Hong Kong, China

The signature run in Hong Kong. Carved out into the side of a hill, this relatively flat, paved path runs about 4k one-way, providing great views of Central and Wanchai just below.
Explore

Geography and climate are the other defining elements of running in Hong Kong. Outside the waterfront, running in Hong Kong is hilly. As for the weather, the range is from mild to hot. Summers are uncomfortably hot and humid, with average highs around 90F from May through October. It does not really cool off at night. Winters are pleasantly mild, in the 60s and 70s during the day and much drier. Hong Kong can be cloudy and very rainy during all but the winter months, with frequent tropical downpours. Smog can also be an issue. So be prepared, clothing and hydration-wise.

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Most of the hotels in Hong Kong are clustered on the north side, between the Mid-Levels to the west and Causeway Bay to the east. Pretty much any hotel will provide access to one of the runs in our guide, or to an MTR station that can easily get you there. Hotels in Central and the Mid-Levels provide the easiest access to Bowen Road and the roads and trails around the Peak.

There are also lots of hotels to the east in Causeway Bay or Quarry Bay. They are more affordable. Good running options in that area include waterfront promenades in Quarry Bay; Sir Cecil’s Ride, which is a flat 2.5k dirt path between Quarry Bay and Fortress Hill that connects with the Wilson Trail; and the Happy Valley racetrack.

This is Hong Kong, so there’s no shortage of places to shop. All of the major running shoe and clothing brands have a store centrally located in Hong Kong. On Hong Kong Island, there is Lululemon, Nike, and Fila. On the mainland, near the harbor in Kowloon, there are Reebok, Asics, Adidas, and Puma stores.

There is also a handful of running specialty stores. On Hong Kong Island:

Racing the Planet. Outdoor activity oriented store with lots of running gear as well. Great for trail running.

Action X Outdoor Store. All sorts of outdoor clothing including great running gear. Sheung Wan and Causeway Bay locations on HKI and Discovery Bay on Lantau.

Gone Running. One of the only specialty running stores in Hong Kong. In Wanchai.

1ok Running Shop. Also on Wanchai.

Escapade Sports. Central, Casuseway Bay, and Repulse Bay on HKI.

Group Runs

There is a friendly and very casual running group called HK Harbour Runners,every Wednesday evening at 7:45pm. They run either from TST clock tower to west Kowloon, or Central star ferry pier 7 to Kennedy Town. Distance is about 8km and there are different pace groups (5min/km, 6min/km etc).

Hong Kong has a vibrant calendar of running events.

Running event calendar #1 . Running event calendar #2.

Of particular note are some unique trail running and ultra events.

Resources

Hong Kong Runners is a great site for info on where to run, events, group runs, and other running resources.

Great resource for trail running in Hong Kong: Trail Running in Hong Kong.