Geography of Hong Kong

Geography of Hong Kong

The geography of Hong Kong primarily consists of three main territories: Hong Kong Island, Kowloon Peninsula, and the New Territories. The geography of Hong Kong is varied and is home to various physical geographical features.

The name "Hong Kong", literally meaning "fragrant harbour", is derived from the area around present-day Aberdeen on Hong Kong Island, where fragrant wood products and fragrant incense were once traded [ [ Visit Hong Kong: Volume 1, Spring, 2004 (p.14)] , University of Hong Kong English Centre.] . The narrow body of water separating Hong Kong Island and Kowloon Peninsula, Victoria Harbour, is one of the deepest natural maritime ports in the world.


Hong Kong and its 260 territorial islands and peninsulas are located in the South China Sea, at the mouth of the Pearl River Delta.

The Kowloon Peninsula to the south of Boundary Street and the New Territories to the north of Hong Kong Island were added to Colonial Hong Kong in 1860 and 1898 respectively. The body of water between Hong Kong Island and Kowloon Peninsula is Victoria Harbour, one of the deepest maritime ports in the world. The landscape of Hong Kong is fairly hilly to mountainous with steep slopes. The highest point in the territory is Tai Mo Shan, at a height of 958 metres [ The World Factbook] , Central Intelligence Agency, United States. Last updated 23-01-2007.] . Lowlands exist in the northwestern part of the New Territories.

Hong Kong is 60 km east of Macau on the opposite side of the Pearl River estuary. It has a land border with Shenzhen to the north. Of the territory's 1,092 square kilometres, less than 25 percent is developed.Fact|date=February 2007 The remaining land is reserved as country parks and nature reserves.

Geographical information


Hong Kong is located in eastern Asia, on the southeast coast of the People's Republic of China, facing the East China Sea.


"Total:" 1,092 km²
"Land:" 1,042 km²
"Water:" 50 km²
"Figures published by the United States Central Intelligence Agency."

Land boundaries

"Total:" 30 km
"Border city:" Shenzhen Special Economic Zone, Guangdong Province
"Figures published by the United States Central Intelligence Agency


"Total:" 733 km
Maritime claims:
"Territorial sea:" 3 nm
"Figures published by the United States Central Intelligence Agency


Hong Kong has 262 islands [ [ "Travelling to Hong Kong"] - Travel Health Service, HKSAR. Retrieved on 16 February 2007.] including Hong Kong Island, Lantau Island, Cheung Chau, Lamma Island, Peng Chau and Tsing Yi Island.


Hong Kong's climate is subtropical and monsoonal with cool dry winters and hot wet summers. As of 2006, its annual average rainfall is 2,214 mm, though about 80% of the rain falls between May and September. It is occasionally affected by tropical cyclones between May and November, most often from July to September. The mean temperature of Hong Kong ranges from 17 °C in January to 29 °C in July. [Hong Kong Survey & Mapping Office, Lands Department. "Hong Kong Guide 2007" [map] . Notes on Hong Kong, p. 411. ISBN 962-567-174-9.]

January and February are more cloudy, with occasional cold fronts followed by dry northerly winds. It is not uncommon for temperatures to drop below 10 °C in urban areas. Sub-zero temperatures and frost occur at times on high ground and in the New Territories. March and April can be pleasant although there are occasional spells of high humidity. Fog and drizzle are common on high ground which is exposed to the southeast. May to August are hot and humid with occasional showers and thunderstorms. Afternoon temperatures often exceed 31 °C whereas at night, temperatures generally remain around 26 °C with high humidity. In November and December there are pleasant breezes, plenty of sunshine and comfortable temperatures. [ [ Climate of Hong Kong] Hong Kong Observatory. Retrieved on 1 Sep 2007.]


Hong Kong's terrain is hilly and mountainous with steep slopes. There are lowlands in the northern part of Hong Kong. A significant amount of land in Hong Kong, especially on the Hong Kong Island and the Kowloon peninsula, is reclaimed.

Extreme points

The lowest elevation in Hong Kong is in South China Sea (0 m) while the highest elevation is at Tai Mo Shan (958 m) in Tsuen Wan, the New Territories.


*"Northernmost": Shenzhen River coord|22|33|44|N|114|9|41|E|
*"Easternmost": Ping Chau coord|22|32|26|N|114|26|30|E|
*"Southernmost": Tau Lo Chau coord|22|9|14|N|113|55|21|E|
*"Westernmost": Peaked Hill coord|22|13|1|N|113|50|7|E|

Principal peaks of Hong Kong

# Tai Mo Shan - 958 m, Tsuen Wan
# Lantau Peak (Fung Wong Shan) - 934 m, on Lantau Island
# Sunset Peak (Tai Tung Shan) - 869 m, on Lantau Island
# Sze Fong Shan - 785 m
# Lin Fa Shan - 766 m, on Lantau Island
# Nei Lak Shan - 751 m, on Lantau Island
# Yi Tung Shan - 747 m, on Lantau Island
# Ma On Shan - 702 m
# The Hunch Backs (Ngau Ngak Shan) - 674 m
# Grassy Hill - 647 m
# Wong Leng - 639 m
# Buffalo Hill - 606 m
# West Buffalo Hill - 604 m
# Kowloon Peak (Fei Ngo Shan) - 602 m
# Shun Yeung Fung - 591 m
# Tiu Shau Ngam - 588 m
# Kai Kung Leng - 585 m
# Castle Peak - 583 m
# Lin Fa Shan, Tsuen Wan - 578 m
# Tate's Cairn (Tai Lo Shan) - 577 m

Victoria Peak, the highest point on Hong Kong Island, at 552 m is the 24th highest peak in Hong Kong.

Natural resources

The natural resources of Hong Kong can be divided into three main categories:

*Metalliferous minerals and non-metalliferous industrial minerals in the onshore area;
*Quarried rock and building stone;
*Offshore sand deposits.

Despite its small size, Hong Kong has a relatively large number of mineral occurrences. Some mineral deposits have been exploited commercially. Metalliferous mineral occurrences are grouped into four broad categories: tin-tungsten-molybdenum mineralization, copper-lead-zinc mineralization, iron mineralization and placer deposits of tin and gold. Mesozoic igneous activity is largely responsible for this diversity of mineral deposits and the mineral concentrations have been variably enhanced by hydrothermal activity associated with faulting. Concentrations of non-metalliferous minerals that have been commercially exploited include kaolin clay, feldspar, quartz, beryl and graphite.cite book|author=R.J. Sewell, S.D.G. Campbell, C.J.N. Fletcher, K.W. Lai & P.A. Kirk|title=The Pre-Quaternary Geology of Hong Kong|year=2000|publisher=Government of Hong Kong SAR|isbn=9620202996]

For many years, granite and volcanic rocks have been quarried locally for road base metal, pell mell, armour stone and asphalt, although the main purpose now is for concrete aggregates. At present, there are three quarries operating in Hong Kong. These are principally in granite and are located at Lam Tei, Shek O and Anderson Road. All the quarries are in the process of rehabilitation and have a life expectancy of between two to eight years.

Offshore sand bodies have been dredged for aggregate sand and reclamation fill in Hong Kong has grown as the rate of urban development has increased. [cite book|author=J.A. Fyfe, R.Shaw, S.D.G. Campbell, K.W. Lai & P.A. Kirk|title=The Quaternary Geology of Hong Kong|year=2000|publisher=Government of Hong Kong SAR|isbn=9620202988]

Land use

"Arable land:" 5.05%
"Permanent crops:" 1.01%
"Other:" 93.94% (2001 est.)
"Figures published by the United States Central Intelligence Agency

Natural hazards

Tropical cyclones frequent Hong Kong during the summer months between June and August typically. Landslides are common after a rainstorm.

Environmental issues

*Air and water pollution from rapid urbanisation
*Extinction of natural species
*Introduction of exotic species

See also

* Country parks and conservation in Hong Kong
* Beaches of Hong Kong
* Rivers of Hong Kong
* List of bays in Hong Kong
* List of areas of Hong Kong
* Geography of China
* Geology of Hong Kong


External links

* [ Climate of Hong Kong]
* [ The Lands Department of the Government of Hong Kong]
* [ Waterfalls in Hong Kong]
* [ "Hong Kong in Figures 2006 Edition"] , Census and Statistics Department, HKSAR. February 2006.

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