Skip to Content

How To Hike The Braemar Hill Peak In Hong Kong [Red Incense Burner Summit]

The Braemar Hill Peak is a hidden gem yet it is one of the best spots in Hong Kong to view the city’s spectacular skyline – especially if you want to enjoy the view without the crowds!

What many people are surprised to know is that Hong Kong is actually full of great hikes as it has so many peaks and hills! Braemar Hill is one of the easier hikes that offers some of the most mesmerising views over Hong Kong, both during the day and at sunset.

I’d even go so far as to say the views from Braemar Hill are probably my favourite view in the whole of Hong Kong!

braemar hill

Also known as Hung Heung Lo Fung or the Red Incense Burner Summit, this short hike is full of amazing views and provides the perfect escape into nature when you need a change of scenery from the urban sprawl of Hong Kong.

In this guide, I’ll share all you need to know about the Braemar Hill peak hike, including how to get there, the best photo spots, and the best times to visit!

How Long Is The Braemar Hill Peak Hike?

The hike is short – you hike 3km to the summit, or you have an even quicker option that will only take you 5 minutes walking from the nearest bus stop to reach the summit.

I don’t however recommend that you skip the 3km hike, as there are some fantastic viewpoints along the way to enjoy – plus the hike is very easy, I did it in sandals! 

As this hike is fairly short, it’s perfect if you only have a short amount of time in Hong Kong but still want to escape the urban jungle and see some of the natural beauty! 

It should take around one hour in total to walk it leisurely, although of course you’ll want to stop off, relax and enjoy the views, so add extra time for that! I think I spent about 2 hours here in total!

braemar hill smiling quotes

How Easy Is The Braemar Hill Peak Hike?

Despite the photos making it appear that you would have to climb a whole mountain to find these views, the great thing is that this hike is so easy!

It’s a relatively simple flat trail the whole route (probably just over 100 metres gradual incline in total), I’d even recommend it as a family hike. I was able to pleasantly stroll the whole way in a dress and sandals.

Where Should You Start The Braemar Hill Peak Hike?

Start the 3km hike to Braemar Hill Peak at Mt Butler Road, as this ensures you’ll get to see all the stunning viewpoints along the way. Then on the way back you can take the shorter route back down to the main road that takes 2 or 3 minutes! 

If you just take the short cut both ways, you’ll only see the Braemar Hill Peak and will really miss out on some other incredible viewpoints!

braemar hill

How To Get To The Braemar Hill Peak (Red Incense Burner Summit)

It is very convenient to get to the start of the trail – Mount Butler Road, just take the MTR to Admirality Station. Then from outside the MTR take the 24M minibus to Mount Butler Estate (the last stop) for 7HK$ (less than 1USD), where the trail begins.

The start of the trail is on a road with lots of construction and quarries which seems a bit bizarre for the start of a hike, but just roll with it. Type in Red Incense Burner Summit into your maps and follow the route there. 

Walking To The Red Incense Burner Summit

For the first kilometre you’ll be wandering along the side of the road. It’s quite uneven so watch your footing, but don’t let this put you off! 

Then you’ll reach the small path where you’ll be surrounded by nature and trees. There are plenty of unnamed rocky viewpoints along the way just off the main trail, so be sure to stop off and enjoy the views!

Don’t be afraid to venture off the path – you only need to walk a few metres to find some incredible unique viewpoints on rocky platforms surrounded by greenery that make for fantastic photos!

braemar hill smiling quotes

There are some boulders where you can get a really nice viewpoint, just go down the dirt tracks, off the main concrete path for a few metres and you’ll find them.

Carry on along the trail – you’ll see a small sign on the left in Cantonese that points you to the Red Incense Burner Summit – the best view! Admire the views of Kowloon, Central and Victoria Harbour.

The views are truly spectacular – I could have stayed here all day! I loved sitting on the boulders being surrounded by lush greenery while being able to look down on the sprawling city. It makes a really nice contrast to have hills mixed up with skyscrapers!

There are views in all angles so you can really get a sense of the city of Hong Kong!

Looking north, you can see Victoria Harbour and Kowloon and Mong Kok in the background. Looking west, you’ll see Causeway Bay, Central, Wan Chai and Tai Hang and all the mountains behind the skyscrapers.

Looking east, you’ll see buildings in Quarry Bay and beyond. The views are honestly spectacular.

braemar hill

The Shortcut Down From Red Incense Burner Summit

Once you’ve enjoyed the views and are ready to leave, it’s just a 2-minute walk down the hill to the St. Joan of Arc Secondary School, where you’ll find the bus stop just outside that goes to Admiralty.

To ride the bus, MTR, tram or ferry in Hong Kong you’ll need to purchase a Tourist Octopus Card.

When Is The Best Time To Do The Braemar Hill Peak Hike?

Lots of people go to Braemar Hill to enjoy the sunset as it’s a great Hong Kong sunset spot, and the Hong Kong skyline is lit up fantastically at night, but due to time constraints (I was on a Flight Attendant layover), I did the hike in the afternoon.

During the whole time I don’t think I saw another soul on the hike, it was so peaceful! I stopped several times to just enjoy the stunning views – whatever time of day you visit, they are incredible!

I really didn’t mind that I didn’t get to stay for when the city comes to life with lights at night, therefore it’s a great morning/afternoon hike if you aren’t able to visit for sunset.

If you do plan to go for sunset, always make sure to plan your time accordingly! Sunset in summer is roughly at 7pm, and sunset in the winter months is roughly at 5.30pm.

I would definitely bring a torch or headlamp if you plan to stay to watch the sunset, and don’t stay too late afterwards as it is very dark going down, so you want to watch your footing.

 

Hopefully you will enjoy the Braemar Hill Hike and the views as much as I did! It’s definitely worth doing when you visit Hong Kong – even if you’re only in Hong Kong for a short amount of time.

It is probably the easiest and shortest hike in Hong Kong, yet the views are just out of this world!