Known as the antarctica of Hong Kong, this southern most island is indeed rugged and isolated although only 30 minutes away by ferry from the mainland!
Due to the proximity and transport convenience to the island, it makes a great weekend getaway!
Starting point: You can either catch the ferry from Aberdeen or Stanley Blake Pier. The ferry timings vary from day to day so please check in advance. From Aberdeen, it takes about 1 hour and from Stanley only 1/2 hour. HKD50 return.
Hike Duration: There are 2 route to this hike, either though the hills (which would take about 2.5 hours) or on the paved path (takes about 1 hour)
End Hike: Pier, you could either return to Aberdeen or Stanley.
Hike Difficulty: 2.5/5 (the paved track is very well maintained)
Scenery Rewards: 4/5
If you come during the weekend, there could be crowds, best to make it 15 minute before departure! We arrived 10 minutes before departure and there was a queue of around 100 people before us.
Note: Most part of the hike around the island is unshaded with no trees or bush, I wished I brought my umbrella! Doing this in summer would require plenty of water, shades, cap and definitely umbrella!
If you are on roaming and don't want to be charged, do turn off the roaming function on your phone! There is no 4G signal there!
From the pier make a left toward the Tien Hau Temple.
You can see the snail rock towards the right flank of the temple. Behind the other end, there is the hill trail towards the top of the island and later downhill towards the carving rock coastline at the eastern side of the island. If you are not up to hiking the hill route, you can re-track back to the pier and walk to the coastline from there, on the flat and paved path!
Be warn, the trail has no shade and on a hot day it can be very exhausting!
When you reach the path where you came from, there are uphill steps on the left that leads to Mo's Old House and Coffin Rock.
The peculiar rocks of Poi Toi against the South China Sea is fascinating! I felt like a child on a treasure hunt exploring all the gems of the island!
Make a left at the pink store towards the coastline and go up the flight of stairs with that magnificent tree! There are not many trees in the island but the few remaining ones that have weathered the strong typhoon winds are simply amazi
There is a flight of steps toward the carved rock on the coastal path. The actual date and the people responsible for these carvings are a mystery.
There are a few mysterious carving rocks scattered around Hong Kong, and it is worth a look if you are around the area. It is believed that the rock carvings in Poi Toi Island is the epitaph of an emperor who died on or near Poi Toi?
Just following the path on the coast-line and admire the sweeping scenery ahead of you and just try to make out every shape of rock you see! It would certainly require some imagination! You will come across Tortoise rock, monk rock, palm rock, among the popular ones.
The lighthouse on edge of the island, is one of the remaining 5 pre-war lighthouses in Hong Kong. It provided a shade refuge from the very hot sun during our hike!
After you have checked all the rocks, make your way back to the pier area for lunch! I always look forward to try out the signature dish of the area. And in Poi Toi Island, it happens to be the seaweed soup.
Where to eat
There is one huge eatery here, Ming Kee Seafood, that charges a minimum spending of HKD190 per head, or if you are on a budget or diet or just looking for a quick fix, there are other eateries that cook up simply food such as fried rice or noodles, vegetable and the quintessential seafood soup! There are also one or two stalls offering sweet desserts! Since there is no running water or electricity supply here, most small stores use fire wood in the kitchen!
If you have extra time, you could waste away at the beach with a good nap after lunch. Just be at the pier by 4.30pm or catch the last ferry at 6pm.
Every island in Hong Kong is unique in its one way. I found Poi Toi Island remote and deserted by the government despite the proximity to the most affluent neighborhood in Hong Kong. It is surely a great weekend gateway with the sweeping view of the South China Sea and the mysterious rocks on the coastline. It surely warrants a visit!
Date visited: 1st December 2019