Kadoorie Farm & Botanic Garden (KFBG) was initially founded by Sir Horace Kadoorie in 1956 to offer agricultural advice to farmers and enable them to live more independently. It provides local farms with vital skills, agricultural supplies and cheap, or interest-free, loans.

Walking trails at Kadoorie Farm & Botanical Garden Photo: Tom Grundy/HKFP

The experimental agricultural project grew over the years, with themed gardens designed and carefully planted from the 1960s onwards. The project has become a green haven for leisure and an opportunity to educate the public about the amazing biodiversity that Hong Kong has to offer. 

Walking Trails at Kadoorie Farm & Botanic Garden Photo: Tom Grundy/HKFP

Kadoorie Farm & Botanic Garden now comprises over 148 hectares of land near Tai Po in the New Territories.

Kadoorie Farm animal exhibits

Most of the animals you will discover have been rescued and rehabilitated by the Kadoorie Farm Fauna Conservation department. Since the 1990s they have hosted a Wild Animal Rescue Centre where the rescued animals are treated when they first arrive. The centre is not open to the public, but it serves as a hospital and recovery space to take vital care of each animal on the farm.

Butterfly Garden. Photo: Tom Grundy/HKFP

Here are our top five animal exhibits at Kadoorie Farm & Botanic Garden:

  1. Wildlife Walkthrough – a mixed exhibit of flamingos, alligators and turtles as well as wild birds that visit the enclosures. The flamingos are not rescued animals; they were gifted to KFBG many years ago and are now over 25 years old.
  2. Native Mammal Display – home to two leopard sisters and one masked palm civet. These mammals, which were once native to Hong Kong, have sadly lost their natural environments as a result of deforestation.
  3. Butterfly Garden – over 171 butterfly species and 1,300 moth species have been recorded at KFBG. Peak months to see the best butterfly displays are April to June.
  4. Monkey Haven – all the macaques you will encounter here were rescued as orphaned infants, or had been kept as pets and were abandoned. As they are used to interaction with humans, they cannot be released into the wild. Do not feed them or give them a chance to steal food from you.
  5. Streamlife Display – home to aquatic animals that inhabit the upper, middle and lower sections of Lam Tsuen River. You can discover dragonflies, mayflies, caddisflies, toads, frogs and more.
Pigs at Da Hua Bai Pig Display at Kadoorie Farm Photo: Tom Grundy/HKFP

Kadoorie Farm & Botanic Garden has many more unique animal exhibitions, see all of them here.

Top Trails In Kadoorie Farm & Botanic Garden

Photo: Tom Grundy/HKFP

Kadoorie Farm & Botanic Garden has created this super handy downloadable of eight kilometres worth of self-guided trails. They have separated the hikes into 3 suggested walking routes:

  • Little Fish Loop – a 2-3 hour route of 4.37 kilometres which follows the ancient stream-side route through the forest. Wear your hiking boots for this route as it is the longest of the three.
  • Woodland Loop – an hour-long walk of 1.82 kilometres is the shortest of the three and passes through the Monkey Haven up to the Rainbow Pavilions where you will find amazing views over the Great Falls. You can also shorten this hike to 40 minutes by walking down from the top of the Woodland Trail.
  • Sky Loop – a 1.5-2 hours walk of 2.7 kilometres. It is the highest of all three, but does offer the best views as well as philosophical quotes along the way up. This path is for the experienced hiker as the trail is rough in places. You can shorten this hike to 45 minutes by starting at the top of the Woo Steps.
Rescued bird at the Jim Ades Raptor Sanctuary At Kadoorie Farm Photo: Tom Grundy/HKFP

Visitors may wish to take the park bus to the top of the park then work their way downhill through the forests and attractions.

Picnic areas & restaurant at Kadoorie Farm & Botanic Garden

This is a truly magical place for a picnic, so make sure to fill your baskets before coming here as they have six allocated picnic areas:

Photo: Tom Grundy/HKFP
  • The Plaza – have your picnic against the greenest background of orchids, trees and the mountain. Don’t forget to get a snap with the sculpture of Sir Horace Kadoorie, the founder, who especially loved children and orchids.
  • Art House – here you will find outdoor tables and seating places where visitors can enjoy a picnic under the pleasant shade of the trees. Make sure to visit the Art House after lunch; all the art is made by visitors and, if you wish, you can borrow some materials to create your own.
  • Walter Kerr Garden – home to a beautiful stream that is the centre of the garden, it also has an array of unique heritage features, and the richest ex-situ conservation collection of native plants in Hong Kong.
Green path at the Walking Trails at Kadoorie Farm & Botanical Garden Photo: Tom Grundy/HKFP
  • Cascade Garden – blended with nature you will find some unusual art here – make sure to spot the fish mosaic and the painted wall mural. From here you can meander your way up through the Butterfly Garden and Rainbow Pavilion. 
  • Convent Garden – this gorgeous green patch is named after the Nun Orchids that used to grow here, and it is a fantastic location for a picnic under the shade of the forest trees. 
  • Dragon Pavilion and Little Falls – this is arguably KFBG’s most unique spot. The stream beside the pavilion gets transformed by heavy rain into a cascading torrent of white water splashing over rocks and pools. Just up the hill, above the falls, and past a small maze of paths, lies an even more secluded and charming picnic site.
Photo: Tom Grundy/HKFP

If you don’t want to haul a picnic basket with you, head to the Sun Garden Café where they serve delicious vegetarian meals from 9:30 am to 4 p.m.

Photo: Kadoorie Farm.

How to get to Kadoorie Farm & Botanic Garden, admissions & opening hours

From the centre of Hong Kong, it takes about an hour by public transport. If you take a taxi or have a car, it will take about half an hour.

Photo: Tom Grundy/HKFP

The East Rail Line Route:

  • Take the East Rail Line to Tai Wo station.
  • Leave by Exit B, walk to the bus stop at Tai Wo Plaza.
  • Take bus 64K in the direction of Yuen Long (West).
  • Get off at Kadoorie Farm bus stop opposite the main entrance.

The Tuen Ma Line Line Route:

  • Take the Tuen Ma Line line to Kam Sheung Road Station.
  • Leave by Exit C, and walk to the bus stop across the road.
  • Take bus 64K in the direction of Tai Po Market.
  • Get off at Kadoorie Farm bus stop opposite the main entrance.
Photo: Tom Grundy/HKFP

Visitors between the ages of 12 and 59 pay an entrance fee of HK$40 and children between the aged 5-11 pay HK$20. Children under 5-years-old and senior citizens 60 and above, registered disabled individuals may enter for free.

Garden Trails At Kadoorie Farm & Botanic Garden Photo: Tom Grundy/HKFP

The park is open every day from 9:30 am until 5 pm. It is closed on some holidays, as noted here.

Nicky Blokhoff

Nicky Blokhoff is a freelance journalist and editor with with an MA in broadcast journalism. She is currently based in Europe and has worked for various lifestyle media outlets across Asia.