Mai Po Natural Reserve in Hong Kong

Why is Mai Po Natural Reserve so Special?

At the end of autumn every year, millions of birds fly to Mai Po Nature Reserve for winter, many of which are endangered birds in the world. So winter is the best time to visit there. Spring has come and many birds have left. However, the protected area still maintains an active atmosphere. Shrimp becomes active, butterflies, dragonflies and many other insects can be seen everywhere.

Mai Po Nature Reserve also provides habitats for many other wildlife, including 21 amphibians, 7 reptiles, more than 31 fishes, 400 invertebrates, 380 birds and 24 mammals. In addition, about 250 plants can be seen there. With the proper name of “bird paradise”, this reserve is an excellent place for you to observe all kinds of beautiful birds.

Where is Mai Po Natural Reserve?

Mai Po Nature Reserve and Inner Deep Bay, located in the northwest corner of Hong Kong, have been paradise for birds for many years. In the past, people did not give any protection to this area, but since 1976, this area has been regarded as an important protected resource for scientific research. In 1984, WWF began to manage Mai Po Nature Reserve. In 1995, 1,500 hectares (3,707 acres) of wetlands around Mai Po and Inner Deep Bay were designated as very important international wetlands.

Main Attraction of Mai Po Natural Reserve

Ramsar wetland

March 6, 1995. After years of lobbying by the Nature Fund, local and overseas environmentalists, and the support of the government’s Town Planning Board, the government decided to designate 1,500 hectares of Mai Po and Deep Bay Inner Bay as “wetlands of international importance” under the Ramsar Convention. While setting up Ramsar Wetland, the Hong Kong Government has also decided to allocate HK$ 423 million for land acquisition, wetland education and visitor center establishment and conservation management in the next five years.


Mangrove is a unique intertidal wetland ecosystem, which is located on sheltered coasts of tropical and subtropical regions. In their environment, they are often washed by tides and freshwater rivers.

The habitat is characterized by high temperature, variable salinity, alternating aerobic and anaerobic states, periodic humidity and dryness, and unstable and flowing mud.
Mangrove communities are made up of a variety of plants and animals, and each community has its own unique animal and plant species

Rare animal resources

Mai Po wildlife, about 2 million to 3 million waterbirds such as gulls, ducks, herons and wading birds fly from breeding grounds in North China, Mongolia and Siberia to wintering grounds in Southeast Asia and Australasia each year. They rely on stopovers on their migration routes, foraging and storage of sufficient energy to prepare for the rest of the long journey. Wetlands around Mai Po and Inner Deep Bay are important supply stations. In winter, as many as 68,000 birds overwinter in these wetlands and then fly back to their breeding grounds to the north in spring. Spring and Autumn are migratory seasons for migratory birds. About 20,000 to 30,000 wading birds visit the wetlands in Mai Po and Inner Deep Bay.

How to Get There

 From Sheung Shui MTR Station

  • By Public Light Bus (red vans)
    In San Fat Street, next to Sheung Shui Landmark, take the Public Light Bus (minibus) No.17 to Mai Po Village. Then, it is a 20 minute walk to your destination.
  • By Bus

Take KMB Bus No.76K on Choi Yuen Road opposite the Sheung Shui MTR Station and get off at Mai Po Village.

  • By Taxi
    Take a green taxi from Sheung Shui MTR Station to your destination. It will cost you about HK$80.

From the Yuen Long Station of West Rail

  • By public light bus
    Take Minibus No.17 from Shui Che Kwun Street, Yuen Long to Tam Kon Chau Road. Then, take a 20-minute walk to the reserve.
  • By Bus

Take KMB Bus No.76K from Long Yat Road near Yuen Long Center to Mai Po Village. Then, walk for about 20 minutes to the reserve.

  • By Taxi
    Take a green taxi from the Yuen Long Station of the West Rail to your destination. The cost is about HK$70.

Useful Travel Tips

The reserve is only open on Fridays, weekends and public holidays (except the first three days of the Lunar New Year). To explore Mai Po Nature Reserve, you need to join a tour organized by WWF. Children under the age of 4 are not allowed to enter the protected area; People under 18 must be accompanied by adults.

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Edited by Doreen/张洋