Is it suitable for me/children?
You must be fit/able/experienced enough to hike at least 5km on technical country park trails at night. At least 50% of the route may be on steep incline. There is also a short optional stream bed section. Children must be a minimum of 8 years old with some trail hiking experience (for Private Safaris, minimum age can be discussed case-by-case).
What do I need to bring/wear?
You should bring a good quality torch/headlamp that lasts for a minimum of 3-4 hours. Phones are not appropriate torches. A good quality torch/headlamp is critical to the experience. Our guides use Ferei HL40II from Gone Running and we can provide these at a discount (HK$700). Good/proper hiking shoes that you don't mind getting wet/muddy. Insect repellent, and any medication that you are taking. You can wear normal hiking clothes but recommend long/light trousers for kids.
We will cancel or postpone the hike if the weather is inappropriate (in most cases we will let you know 12-48 hours beforehand), however, dependent on weather conditions, we may make a final call 3 hours before the hike. Rain before the hike is good. We will usually offer a full refund (rather than rebooking in case of cancelation). For private Safaris, we will offer the option to reschedule.
How safe is the hike?
Hiking on country park trails at night has an inherent level of risks including (not limited to) slipping, falling down, animal/insect bites and exhaustion. This is especially so if you have limited hiking experience with trail hiking. The risk of snake bites is the same as any time you hike on country park trails (low). Snake Safaris are led by William Sargent (founder of Hong Kong Snakes FB page) who is an outdoor corporate events/race organiser (for the last 12 years) with over 30 years snake handling experience and has been a snake catcher for the Hong Kong Police for the last 7 years.
Are we guaranteed to see a snake?
No. We are searching out wild animals in their natural habitat and do not make any guarantees. We will however, give you the best chance with very experienced spotters. We always see interesting wildlife and creatures. It is also worth noting most nocturnal snakes are smaller than diurnal snakes. We have spotted 20 different species of snake during our Safaris (in the last 4 years) and so far, not had a completely snakeless evening.
What is the difference between Public Group and Private Safari?
Public Safaris are a slightly larger group, with two guides. Private Safaris are a smaller group (max 6) with one guide. Our experience is the smaller the group, the more interactive the evening is. The aim of Snake Safaris is not just looking for snakes, but for our guides to educate participants on snakes and other Hong Kong wildlife.
The nearest MTR to our meeting point is Kam Sheung Station (about 10-15 minutes by taxi) or Tai Wo Station (10 minutes by taxi). Exact details will be sent upon confirmation.