Off the beaten path: How to hike Ocean Park’s cable car rescue trail in an hour

You may have ridden all the roller coasters, tried your hand at cheesy carnival games and aww-ed and aah-ed at the resident pandas. But unless you’ve taken this off the beaten path, we can bet that you’ve never experienced Ocean Park like this before.

Located just minutes from the MTR station, the Ocean Park cable car rescue trail is a short, family-friendly walk that takes you on a gradual uphill, overlooking the lower section of the park and offering sweeping views of southern Hong Kong Island.

Since it’s a rescue trail, the one-way path—you’d have to turn back on the same route—is paved throughout, making it perfect for a light weekend walk. Even accounting for photo stops, the around 2.5km hike should take you longer than an hour and a bit more.

Getting to the starting point

Take the MTR to Ocean Park station and leave via Exit A. Pass the roundabout and walk straight along Ocean Park Road, where there is a bus and minibus stop.

You’ll see Hong Kong Police College to your right. Continue on the uphill slope, where there is a sign that reads Manly Villa.

A couple minutes into the incline, you’ll already be able to see the park’s iconic cable cars overhead.

Keep an eye out for a set of stairs on your right, marked by a handy yellow arrow and the word 南朗山, or Nam Long Shan (Brick Hill). This is where the climb begins.

Going uphill

As you walk up, you’re treated to a colorful bird’s eye view of Ocean Park’s lower section overlooking attractions like the merry-go-round and the Aqua City Lagoon. It’s quite a surreal feeling to have cable cars (slowly) whizzing by you above—how often do you get to see the underside of a cable car?

Between waving back to park visitors yelling a friendly ga yau (add oil) from their cable cars overhead and admiring the stunning view, make sure you watch your step. There are a couple of raised metal steps encasing cables, presumably part of the cable car network, so be careful not to trip.

Read more: MacLehose Trail recognised as one of the world’s best hikes by National Geographic

About 30 minutes in, you’ll reach a fork in the road. Stick to your left.

A panoramic view

As you keep going, Ocean Park fades out of distance and a sweeping panorama of southern Hong Kong island comes into view. The mountain looks out to some of the most prime real estate in the city, including the multi-million dollar mansions of Shouson Hill and Repulse Bay.

There are some downhill sections along the way as you walk towards the other end of Ocean Park, which you’ll recognize from the yellow-and-red Hair Raiser roller coaster on the right.

If you keep going, you’ll see a blue sign and a gate that bars you from walking further. That marks the end of the path, so at this point, turn around and head back the way you came.

A short trek with a gentle incline and views that parallel more strenuous hikes in Hong Kong, the Ocean Park cable car rescue trail is a great option if you don’t want to break too much of a sweat.

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