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The Violet Hill hike is part of the Wilson Trail stage 2 on Hong Kong Island, often done with Twins Peak. Starting from near the Wong Nai Chung Reservoir to just before Stanley, the hike gives you a glimpse of Hong Kong Island’s bustling northern side peeking behind mountains and then the countryside of the south. And did I mention a great view of Stanley before you reach the end?
Summary of the Violet Hill hike (and Twins Peak)
Time taken: 3 hours
Pros: near the city with great view and little dirt section
Cons: the concrete stairs can be difficult to walk on and some stretches very narrow
How to get to Violet Hill hike start
There are buses from both Central and Causeway Bay that can get you to the Wong Nai Chung Reservoir Park bus stop, which is right next to the Sinopec gas station. Here are the numbers:
From Causeway Bay: number 76.
From Central: number 6.
Once you get off the bus, head up the flight of stairs, then straight onto the next road. Turn left and cross the road at the unofficial crossing.
There is a trail start here as well, which is not the Wilson Trail and is a little more difficult, but takes you to a higher hill before reaching Violet Hill.
For the Wilson trail, continue up. There is a public bathroom if you need it – the last one on the hike.
Then carry on up the road until you reach the sign for Wilson Trail, which is in front of a flight of stairs.
Violet Hill hike
The stairs go up and first break into a flatter stretch next to a fence before more stairs, a flat stretch, then more stairs.
In all honesty, the hike is fairly monotonous, and that’s why I have photos to show you, rather than try to describe the stairs:
The initial hike is surrounded by high shrubberies and some trees. But once you reach a more open, exposed stretch, you should be able to look back and see the glimpse of Hong Kong Island.
Then you’ll reach the junction where the alternative start would join.
Make sure you get some photos, as the top of Violet Hill (433m), marked by the black and white meteorological column, is surrounded by vegetation.
From there, the hike goes down but then continues on the opposite hill on flatter terrain, and has a great view of the Tai Tam Reservoir.
The two hills in the distance are the Twins Peak, in case you are wondering (I was, then found out it was the Twins Peak as we hiked).
The trail then meanders its way downhill on many, many stairs, but is thankfully not that steep.
You can get a glimpse of Repulse Bay to the right just before the trail goes into trees and high shrubbery.
Take a break and don’t over-tax your knees.
Keep going down and there’s a junction where you can go right back to Wong Nai Tau Reservoir. For Twins Peak, keep going for another few minutes until you are at the bottom where there is a big junction.
From the junction, cross the bridge and go up the stairs. Now, there are one thousand steps to go up to the first of the Twins Peak, and every hundred steps the step marked by white paint.
The top isn’t marked, but when you are almost at the top, you can see the next peak. The top, at 364m, is just a flat stretch, then you go down again.
The southern Twins Peak stands 386m, slightly higher than the other and the ascent starts with some nicer stairs that are made from wood and not concrete. Enjoy this because after a while, it becomes concrete again.
The top of this Twins Peak there is a bench where you can take a break, but if you are eager to see the best view, then this last stretch is the one.
You can also see across the bay to the road that leads to Cape d’Aguilar, too!
From here, the trail first goes slowly downhill until it reaches the panoramic viewpoint. Here, you get an unobstructed view of Stanley, the ocean, and other islands, too.
I have to admit, the last stretch of stairs down are narrower and sloppier than I’d like, at one point it’s almost like I was at the edge of a cliff.
The stairs meander to the right once you get further down.
Once you get to that point, it’s only a short section until you get to the road.
The bus stop to Stanley is just to the left, for Central and Causeway Bay, go across the road.