Renting a bike in Hong Kong

Has anyone ever done this? How convenient is it? I’m doing a visa run in a couple weeks, and I’d love to get a ride in if the weather’s good. My hotel is in Sha Tin in the New Territories, and according to Wikipedia, “Cycling has been a distinctive feature in Sha Tin and is very popular among both local people and visitors.”

Last time I was in Hong Kong, I spent a day exploring Lantau Island. The roads didn’t seem designed for cycling–no shoulder at all–but I did see a couple white dudes in proper cycling gear whiz by, so I know it can be done, I just don’t know where to find a bike. I couldn’t find any threads about this, so I thought I’d start this one.

I’m also visiting on March, interesting idea.

I did some research on this today and came up with some useful information. I’ll post again when I get back from my trip in a couple weeks to report on my bike rental experience, assuming I’m blessed with decent weather.

The first thing I found was this very helpful blog post on, Renting bikes in Hong Kong. From it I gathered that most shops only rent mountain bikes, but the prices are reasonable (starting at 20-30 HKD a day) and the quality is decent. If you scroll down to the comments, you’ll find a list of shops that offer rentals, complete with addresses and phone numbers.

If that’s not enough, there’s also the Hong Kong Cycling Association’s list of bike shops in Hong Kong. I wish I’d known about Friendly Bicycle and Riders Pro when I was on Lantau in August! That island is gorgeous. Going back for another visit is tempting, but given that I only have a day and a half, I figure I’m better off exploring the New Territories, the area I’m actually staying in. The high-end bikes offered at Bikes Corner a couple MTR stops away from my hotel look pretty tasty, but according to the shop’s website, on weekdays they don’t open till 12:30 PM, and that’s a dealbreaker for me. My plan for this trip is to take a morning bus up to Tai Mei Tuk and rent a bike from Lung Kee, which supposedly opens at 9:30. The area around Plover Cove Reservoir looks beautiful! I just hope they have a large enough bike for me to ride comfortably.

TexMex, if you do end up renting a bike in March, please share your experience! Judging by the number of times this thread has been viewed so far, there’s definitely some interest in this topic.

I’ve been back for a good five weeks now, but better late than never I say.

I did rent a bike. It was not a cyclist’s bike by any stretch of the imagination, but it moved forward when I pedaled it.

You can see that I had to ask the guy at the bike store to give me a seat with a longer post so I could pedal comfortably. It tilted backward, obviously, but it was OK for a half-day’s ride.

Here’s the drivetrain. Not exactly Campagnolo–in fact, the derailleurs didn’t even have preset gear settings.

Here’s the store I rented the bike from.

They had a lot of bikes, including tandems and canopied tricycles.

In retrospect, I should have gone to a shop in a more populated area instead of way out in the boonies of Tai Mei Tuk. On the other hand, it was really pretty there.

For most of the ride, I followed a dedicated bike path along the shore of Tolo Harbour. Generally, it looked something like this.

Occasionally, though, there were stretches right next to the highway, like this.

It was quite an adventure trying to get off the bike path so I could have lunch. In Hong Kong, car traffic and pedestrian traffic are separated very thoroughly. As far as I know there’s no law against riding on the road with the cars, but I didn’t see anyone doing that in a populated area. And you’re definitely not supposed to ride on the sidewalk, or even in semi-pedestrian areas like the campus of the Hong Kong Science Park (next to the bike path), which I think is ridiculous.

On the bright side, one great perk of being in Hong Kong is that you can buy Gatorade! Not that I have anything against Super Supau, but boy was it nice to treat myself to the great American sports drink that, unlike sports drinks here, actually comes in different flavors.

I got back to the shop quite a while before I needed to return the bike, so I decided to take a second look at the road north of Plover Cove Reservoir, Bride’s Pool Road, to see if I could ride on it. It starts off with a nasty uphill section, and there’s a sign telling cyclists to dismount, but I think that’s just a suggestion for that particular part of the road. I ended up riding up and down lots of great hills, all the way to the north end of the road, which is just a few kilometers south of the Shenzhen border. There were lots of cyclists on the road, and they looked like a much more serious lot than the recreational riders on the shoreline path. Unfortunately, I didn’t stop to take pictures of the road because I wanted to be sure I got back on time.

Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that my bike only cost 50 HKD to rent. That’s less than you typically pay for a meal! And I didn’t have to leave a deposit or anything, they just gave me the bike and said, “Come back at the end of the day.”

So, that’s my story. Once I got over my disappointment at the low quality and small size of the bike, I had a great time. It helped a lot that I found some maps of the area at a Shang1wu4 Yin4shu1guan3 (商務印書館) bookstore the day before. I definitely wouldn’t recommend bringing your own bike–it wouldn’t be worth it–but if you can find a place that rents more serious bikes, you could probably get in a good ride in either the New Territories or Lantau. I’d stay away from Kowloon and HK Island–too many people.

Thank you for posting this pictures! Looks like a lot of fun!