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The north-eastern New Territories are home to some of the most beautiful waterfalls of Hong Kong, and as usual waterfalls come hand in hand with pools. Some big enough to swim in, others are small. Some pools are shallow, others are deep and seemingly bottomless. These pools are home to various species of fish, and other waterlife such as the Hong Kong Newt.
This tour is fairly challenging. Not because of it's length, but because of the terrain. When it comes to river treks, Wang Chung Stream is one of the easier ones, however it is still a river trek, meaning it's boulders all the way. There is no need to get wet, however there are several opportunities to have a swim - one of the best ones being at the very end of the river trek section.
The meeting point for this tour is at Tai Po Market MTR station, from where we catch minibus 20R or bus 275R ($10.6) to Bride's Pool Road, from where we head out to first see the Bride's Pool waterfall (map marker 1). Next is the Mirror Pool waterfall (map marker 2), followed a steep scramble up the hill to see the beautiful Mirror Pool (map marker 3), which is located right above this waterfall.
We walk back to Bride's Pool Road, to start the trek up Wang Chung Stream (map marker 4). This stream has numerous waterfalls and pools along the way, including the iconic Dragonball Fall (map marker 5), which is a good half an hour in.
The river itself is really made up of waterfalls and ponds, only a few stretches of normal river in between.
Another half an hour further is the Ice Pool (map marker 6), one of the larger pools, and seemingly bottomless. Even though the water is crystal clear, the bottom of this pool can not be seen. Lots of fish can be seen swimming in the waters here.
From that point on, it's another half an hour or so to reach the Pat Sin Leng Nature Trail, but shortly before we're there we make a stop at one of the larger pools of this river (map marker 7). A natural underwater platform provides a very easy way to enter the water for a refreshing swim - to cool down and wash away all the sweat from the challenging climb to get to this point.
The last part of the tour is a fairly easy half hour hike downhill along the Pat Sin Leng Nature Trail back to Bride's Pool Road, where we can board a bus to take us back to Tai Po Market station.
Total duration: about 5 hours, of which 4 hours on trail.