This location is really the only place where you can catch 07L arrivals, which occur frequently during the winter time, usually in the morning. I really don’t like this location as it’s quite far from the approach path of RWY07L, but unless you have a sweet yacht to go out in, this is the best option available.
From here, 07R arrivals (which come around once every hour and are usually cargo) will be approximately the same distance from you as 07L arrivals. The recommended focal length here is ~250mm for APS-C cameras, and ~400mm for you rich bastards with full-frames.
To get here you’ll want to take the S52 bus from the Tung Chung MTR station. Make sure you take the one that says “Aircraft Maintenance Area” on the front, otherwise you’ll end up at some place that obviously isn’t the maintenance area, which is where you’ll want to go. Stay on the bus until it reaches its final stop, which should be called “Aircraft Maintenance Area”. Once you arrive, backtrack 1-2 minutes until you reach an area where there’s an open road with the airport fence on one side and the ocean on the other.
Hopefully this little map I made will explain it better.
If you’re in the main passenger terminal for some reason, well then tough luck because you’ll have to take the S1 bus to Tung Chung first then take the S52. However, I found that taking the S64 bus to Cathay City and then taking the S52 from there should theoretically work, and will probably save you 20 minutes of precious spotting time. Make sure that you get on the S52 bus from the WEST side of Cathay City, as there are two bus stops for Cathay City on opposite sides of the road. S52 stops at the eastern side on its way to Tung Chung, and stops at the western side on its way to the HAECO maintenance area. I’m 99% sure the S64 shortcut works, however it isn’t mentioned in other HKG spotting guides, so until I test it myself, use it at your own risk. You don’t want to mess with the airport bus network. This one time I tried to be cheeky and took an alternate route that I thought would save me time, but did the opposite. I’ll save that for another post.
The location shown on the map is probably the most ideal as it will put you at the closest distance possible to the arrival path while allowing for a pretty good angle.
Lighting is good in the morning and early-afternoon. Too late in the afternoon (I’d say after 4pm in the winter, maybe a bit later in the summer) and you’ll run into some backlighting from the west.