While the tourist hordes call it a day at Sok Kwu Wan's pier, the lesser-known trail with even better views starts from here. Ling Kok Shan rises behind this fishing village, offering beautiful views but without the crowds. Getting there is not difficult either. From Sok Kwu Wan, keep walking along the coast beyond the pier and leave the town. Continue for about half an hour along the well-paved and relatively flat path towards Mo Tat.
Just off the coast are fish farms with Hong Kong Island in the distance.
Mo Tat is a small residential community that has only 1 restaurant to serve the few wanering tourists. The kai to ferry from Sok Kwu Wan also stops here, then proceeds to Aberdeen.
Heading further inland, the village extends along the slopes heading downhill to abandoned farms. Just past the last houses, beyond a river full of croaking frogs, is a public toilet with a staircase up some 250m to Ling Kok Shan.
Do not climb up the staircase. That way up to Ling Kok Shan is very painful as the staircases don't stop. A more manageable approach is to ascend from Tung O further down the coast, so keep heading south along the path, which will continue to venture into and out of the forest regularly, poking out with sea views every now and then.
This row of abandoned buildings is the old village of Yung Shue Ha, which is slowly being reclaimed by the forest. The buildings date from the early 19th century and were occupied by the Chow clan until they decided to move nearer to the coast.
The next settlement is the new town of Yung Shue Ha, which faces the ocean with a quiet beach. Yung Shue Ha has one restaurant selling simple snacks, noodles, and drinks, but the highlight is to get onto the beach, climb some rocks, and enjoy the scenery.
There doesn't seem to be regular ferry service to this part of Lamma, so the few residents here probably would need to haul their groceries along the trail from Mo Tat after the ferry ride from Aberdeen.
The remoteness rewards you with exclusive views and photos with only you in it.
The paved path continues along the coast towards Tung O, another quiet village on the other side of the beach.
Unfortunately, there was construction along the beach during my visit. They are re-paving the path and some garbage is washing up from the sea.
After the town, the path starts to ascend up the hills, but there are flat sections along the way to offer a short break.
After a while of light climbing, you will see an intersection with a pavilion on the left further uphill. It is a slight detour but you will get to relax with a beautiful sea view behind you.
After the pavilion break, head back down to the intersection and continue up the hill ahead. If you want to give up at this point, the path on the left leads back to Sok Kwu Wan downhill. As you climb further to Ling Kok Shan, you will notice a number of large rocks hanging precariously along the hillsides They have been secured with concrete bases to prevent any surprises from rolling downhill.
On a sunny day, Cyberport and Wah Fu Estate on the southern end of Hong Kong Island are easily visible in the distance. After all, Aberdeen is only a 30 minute ferry ride away.
Looking down, the long beach at Yung Shue Ha and Tung O seemed a world away. That was just 2 hours ago.
After enjoy views of Lamma Island and the southern part of Hong Kong Island from the top, it is a long series of staircases back down to Mo Tat's public toilets that you passed by earlier. With the steep descent, the clockwise loop hike is far less tiring.