297: Ping Shan Heritage Trail
Credit: Threesixfive Content Ltd
This short walking route has been laid out to include a number of historic village structures surviving in the vicinity of Tin Shui Wai, in the northeastern corner of the New Territories. The East Rail Line departs the urban metropolis of Kowloon and emerges from a long tunnel into verdant lowlands in which remnants of an earlier agricultural era can still be explored. The trail begins at the exit of Tin Shui Wai East Rail Station, where the first monument, a hexagonal pagoda dated to 1486, is clearly visible. It then winds round a perimeter road to the southeast and enters a village which still has a lively population, with modern additions complimenting the older buildings. It passes a shrine to the earth god, the traditional walled village of Sheung Cheung Wai, then the adjacent Tang and Yu Kiu Ancestral Halls, each with three courtyards, grand doorways and ornate roofing, and shrines within for ancestor worship. Many of the prominent buildings along the trail are still owned by the influential Tang clan, whose ancestors settled here and other areas of the New Territories over 700 years ago. At the end of the route an informative visitor centre occupies a former police station dating to 1899. Ping Shan Heritage Trail is disjointed and at times literally on the doorsteps of a living community. Nevertheless, it offers a fascinating glimpse into the region’s history.
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