A Travellerspoint blog

Riding the Trails.

Following Sir Cecil's Ride from Quarry Bay to Braemar Hill.

sunny

I walked the Quarry Bay Tree Walk the other day and on route I noticed sign posts for Sir Cecil's Ride. This interested me as I recognized the name as a walk that passes near my school. While I have heard people at work mention it, I have never actually walked it, until today. In fact it is a very long walk and I only walked part of it, which I think is fair enough, as I can always do the other part later and as, unlike Sir Cecil, I wasn't on a horse!

Sir Cecil's Ride is named after Sir Cecil Clemanti, the seventeenth governor of Hong Kong. He was born in Kanpur, India on 1st September 1875 and died in High Wycombe, United Kingdom, on 5th April 1947. Sir Cecil served as Governor of Hong Kong from 1925 to 1930. He was fluent in Cantonese and Mandarin. Among other achievements here, Sir Cecil established Kai Tak Airport, which was in use until 1998. He was also one of the people who helped found the University of Hong Kong. He even wrote the words of the University Anthem which was performed at the university's opening ceremony on 11th March 1912. He was married to Marie Penelope Rose Eyres - Lady Clemanti. Together they had three daughters and one son. Both Sir Cecil and Lady Clemanti were keen horse riders and both have trails that they once loved to ride here named after them.

To get to Sir Cecil's Ride in Quarry Bay exit the MTR at exit A and turn right. Walk along King's Road until Mount Parker Road, proceed up the hill, you'll see signs for Sir Cecil's Ride on the right hand side, shortly after the Woodside Centre for Biodiversity. I took another photo of Woodside as it had been too sunny to take a good picture on my last visit. I also noticed a beautiful cotton tree just outside Woodside's grounds. I love cotton trees. I would have to say they are my favourite tree here as their flowers are just beautiful. Once their flowers fall off, they produce thousands of white seeds which cover the ground in a blanket that resembles snow or cotton wool, hence the name.

Cotton tree the flowers were way too high up to see properly.

Cotton tree the flowers were way too high up to see properly.

Woodside.

Woodside.

The beginning of the Sir Cecil's Ride is clearly signposted but there are not too many sign posts later on. I've read so many varying accounts of this walk, I suspect everyone was doing a slightly different one. The route I chose started with rather a lot of stairs, not in one enormous staircase, but spread over several with the odd flat bit in between. Every so often there was a sitting area with a shelter and a little shrine. One shrine even had a little pool filled with golden carp. I found all these distractions helped take my mind off the steps. Eventually I reached a bridge over a stream. The water level was very low. I did not cross the stream as that way seemed to be a different trail. Next to the bridge there was a huge statue of Kuan Yin, goddess of mercy.

Sir Cecil's Ride.

Sir Cecil's Ride.

Steps Up.

Steps Up.

Kuan Yin.

Kuan Yin.

Little Shrines.

Little Shrines.

Little Shrines.

Little Shrines.

Stream.

Stream.

Bamboo.

Bamboo.

Colourful Plants.

Colourful Plants.

Mountain View.

Mountain View.

Once I had dealt with all the stairs the path levelled out. Occasionally there was a glimpse of a view through the trees. Turning back there were often views of the mountains. I found many beautiful Chinese New Year flowers. These were quite hard to photograph as they always seemed to be just slightly too far over a steep edge.

Mountain Scenery.

Mountain Scenery.

Chinese New Year Flowers.

Chinese New Year Flowers.

After a while when I was getting frustrated with just glimpses of views, I suddenly saw a sign for a view compass, so I climbed the stairs up to it and wow! It was amazing because I could see so many directions at the same time. I don't think photos do it justice. It was the best view point in Hong Kong I have ever seen.

Views from the View Compass.

Views from the View Compass.

Views from the View Compass.

Views from the View Compass.

Views from the View Compass.

Views from the View Compass.

Views from the View Compass.

Views from the View Compass.

Views from the View Compass.

Views from the View Compass.

Views from the View Compass.

Views from the View Compass.

Views from the View Compass.

Views from the View Compass.

Views from the View Compass.

Views from the View Compass.

Views from the View Compass.

Views from the View Compass.

After a long time spent gazing in awe at the view, I eventually tore myself away and continued on route towards Braemar Hill. I loved the rock formations I encountered on the path and I found more Chinese New Year flowers.

Rocky Paths.

Rocky Paths.

Rocky Paths.

Rocky Paths.

Rocky Paths.

Rocky Paths.

Rocky Paths.

Rocky Paths.

Rocky Paths.

Rocky Paths.

Rocky Paths.

Rocky Paths.

Rocky Paths.

Rocky Paths.

Rocky Paths.

Rocky Paths.

Rocky Paths.

Rocky Paths.

Chinese New Year Flowers.

Chinese New Year Flowers.

Chinese New Year Flowers.

Chinese New Year Flowers.

Chinese New Year Flowers.

Chinese New Year Flowers.

Eventually I reached a sort of cave like rock formation. This was just before I reached the stream and waterfall section of my walk, which is just above my school.

Cave like Rock Formation.

Cave like Rock Formation.

The stream area was very pretty though, as we have had little rain recently, the water levels were very low.

Bridge over the stream.

Bridge over the stream.

At the Stream.

At the Stream.

At the Stream.

At the Stream.

At the Stream.

At the Stream.

At the Stream.

At the Stream.

At the Stream.

At the Stream.

At the Stream.

At the Stream.

At the Stream.

At the Stream.

At the Stream.

At the Stream.

There is a well known view point in this area, but I had forgotten the instructions for how to get to it. It didn't matter anyway, as it's only about twenty minutes from where I work. I did however find a different view point on a somewhat precarious ledge which also had some more beautiful Chinese New Year flowers.

View from a Ledge.

View from a Ledge.

View from a Ledge.

View from a Ledge.

View from a Ledge.

View from a Ledge.

Chinese New Year Flowers.

Chinese New Year Flowers.

View from a Ledge with Chinese New Year Flowers.

View from a Ledge with Chinese New Year Flowers.

View from a Ledge with Chinese New Year Flowers.

View from a Ledge with Chinese New Year Flowers.

In fact this area was filled with beautiful plants. I even found some lovely pitcher plants. To my delight I also thought I saw another lovely cotton tree but on closer examination it was an equally lovely flame tree..

Colourful Plants.

Colourful Plants.

Beautiful Wild Flowers.

Beautiful Wild Flowers.

Pitcher Plant.

Pitcher Plant.

Pitcher Plant.

Pitcher Plant.

Pitcher Plant.

Pitcher Plant.

Flame Tree.

Flame Tree.

I then wandered down from Sir Cecil's Ride and returned to civilization. Within a few minutes, I was in front of my school building. Argh!!! I hurried past. It's too early to be back there. I considered taking transport down the hill, but didn't. After all, I walk down here to the MTR every day. On the walk down I passed another cotton tree with high up flowers, but one had fallen, or been placed, conveniently on a wall, the perfect ending photo to a lovely walk.

Flower from a Cotton Tree.

Flower from a Cotton Tree.

Posted by irenevt 14:57 Archived in Hong Kong

Email this entryFacebookStumbleUpon

Table of contents

Comments

How could you ride that trail on a horse? WOuld you be allowed to ride a bike on it?

by greatgrandmaR

Hi Rosalie, Happy Chinese New Year. You know I was wondering exactly the same thing. I think when Sir Cecil Clemanti was governor the trail was probably a dirt path without all those stairs, but I don't know for sure.

by irenevt

Mountain biking is popular here, but I saw no bikes on this trail. Many, many people were running the trail though.

by irenevt

That rocky path looks lovely and the cotton tree flower is very pretty! Looks little like lilys, those are my favorite flowers! :)

by hennaonthetrek

Hi Henna, the cotton tree flowers are lovely. I'm hoping to find some lower down on a tree to get a better picture.

by irenevt

Yet again a lovely walk, with wonderful views from the View Compass :) The cotton tree flowers looks really pretty!

by ToonSarah

I finally found a place to get reasonable shots of the cotton tree flowers in Sham Shui Po. They'll be on my next blog.

by irenevt

This blog requires you to be a logged in member of Travellerspoint to place comments.

Login