Hiking on the Great Wall
5-Day Great Wall Hiking Tour (3 Sections)
Why we recommend this tour: This tour includes three Great Wall sections, including restored section, rugged sections and historically important sections.
- Tour code: BJ-34
- Departure date: You choose
- Private tour: customizable, traveling with your own tour guide, driver, and car
from $679 Price details
Your private guide will greet you in arrivals and you'll be taken by private, professinally-chauffeured car directly to your hotel.
- Take a massage to relax and limber-up for three days of hiking. Oriental Taipan massage is reported to be popular with expats.
- Visit a Beijing snack street, and taste what Beijing people eat as traditional snacks.
Hotels: Days Inn Forbidden City Hotel Beijing
After your Western breakfast at your hotel, you will be transferred to the Great Wall at Mutianyu, where you start your Great Wall hike.
The Mutianyu section is around a 1½-hour drive (78 km) from central Beijing. It display the essence of the Great Wall sections built in the Ming Dynasty (1368–1644). Up to 90% of the area around Mutianyu is forest, and the Mutianyu Great Wall is believed to be the "most graceful" Great Wall section. It is also a less-crowded section.
The restored Great Wall at Mutianyu is about 2.5 kilometers long, including 20 watchtowers, named Building 1 through to Building 20. It takes about 35 minutes to hike from the car park to Building 6, where Mutianyu Pass is located.
It takes about an hour and a half to hike from the Pass to Building 20. Take deep breaths of fresh air and enjoy the graceful scenery on your ascent. The steepest section is between Building 19 and 20 at nearly 70 degrees.
Standing at Building 20, you are at the top of the Great Wall at Mutianyu, and quite near the landmark of Mutianyu’s Great Wall section — a large stone inscription on the hillside saying “忠于毛主席” ('Be loyal to Chairman Mao'). The next watchtower after Building 20 belongs to the collapsed and unrestored Jiankou Great Wall.
Lunch is at a local restaurant near Mutianyu.
After your hike on the Great Wall at Mutianyu has finished, you will be driven to Jinshanling Guest House. The journey takes about 2 hours.
GOOD TO KNOW:
- A cable car is available. Initally this sounds like cheating but it offers a fast way to get up and get going, leaving you a bit more to enjoy the Great Wall itself.
- Section from Mutianyu Pass to Building 1 is less than 500 meters. A short section near Building 2 is dilapidated and very ruined, with a sign beside the wall saying that it is forbidden to climb. It is a good place for photography.
- On your return trip from Building 20, you can choose Building 10, 8, or 6 as the point you leave the wall for a path to the car park. If you are exhausted you can take the cable car down from Building 6.
- There is a museum (China Dream Stones Museum) with more than 20,000 peculiarly-shaped stones at the foot of Mutianyu's Great Wall section. It is free to visit and worth a look.
You will have a breakfast at Jinshanling Guest House. After that your driver and guide will take you directly to the Gubeikou section of the Great Wall, about 20 minutes away.
You will have a 5-hour hiking tour from the Gubeikou section of the Great Wall to the Jinshanling section. There you will discover the original Great Wall of China.
Gubeikou's section of the Great Wall is composed of two parts: Panlongshan and Wohushan. As Wohushan is completely wild and rugged, usually the hiking route starts at Panlongshan.
You will pass several watch towers and beacon towers, some of which were destroyed by rain and wind, only leaving foundation stones. The scenery is often bleak yet picturesque.
After about two hours hiking, you will reach the a military zone. Visitors, except spies ;) will need to make a detour down the deep valley to begin the second, much tougher and challenging part, in bushes or fields, leading to the Jinshanling section of the Great Wall.
Enjoy lunch with your guide at a Chinese restaurant near the Great Wall.
GOOD TO KNOW
- The Jinshanling section of the Great Wall is a heaven for photographers.
- We guided Australian Geographic on their GreatWall hiking adventure on this section. Their trekking route was right from the Gubeikou section of the Great Wall to the Jinshanling section.
After breakfast, you will be transferred to the Great Wall at Huangyaguan in Tianjin. The journey takes about 2 hours.
The Great Wall at Huangyaguan was first built in the North Qi Dynasty (550–577) over 1,500 years ago, and was restored in the Ming Dynasty (1368–1644).
Before arriving at the starting point, you can visit the Strategic Fortification Area, including Eight-Octant City, a government office and storage area in ancient times. Inside the city, the streets were arranged to form a maze. Try and find the way out! The tourist cultural area includes Longevity Garden and the Forest of Stone Steles.
The Great Wall at Huangyaguan can be divided into two sections: the section running west and the eastward section. The middle, your starting point, is Huangya Pass. You can start with the section that interests you more.
Options A: The Western Section
The west section is a segment of the wild Great Wall, constructed on steep cliffs. Wangmaoding Mountain is where the west section ended. The section is stepper and much tougher going than the east section.
Option B: The Eastern Section
There you will see a special round enemy watch tower, which is only found in Huangyaguan. And the east section ends in Taipingzhai, a village at the foot of the mountain. You can visit the village if time allows.
Enjoy lunch with your guide at a Chinese restaurant near the Great Wall. You will return to Days Inn Forbidden City Hotel after your hike.
GOOD TO KNOW
- The Great Wall at Huangyaguan is the venue of the annual International Huangyaguan Great Wall Marathon Race.
- Look out for the two types of bricks — ask your guide why two types were used.
Your driver and guide will meet you at your hotel and take you to the airport. Your guide will assist you with checking, handling luggage and see you off at the security gate.
- The price is valid until March 31st, 2013.
- Normally hotels allow a maximum of 3 adults per room with an extra bed, at extra charge.
- Tour price is indicative only, please inquire for a detailed quotation.
- More people more discount.
China Highlights Difference
- Price Inclusion
- Price Exclusion
- Centrally Located Hotels
- Authentic Chinese Food
- Private Cars and Drivers
- Private Guides
- Airport Taxes and Fuel Fees
- Entrance Fees
- Service Charge & Government Taxes
- Luggage Transfers
- International Airfare or Train Tickets to enter or leave China
- China Entry Visa Fees
- Excess Baggage Charges
- Personal Expenses
- Single Room Supplement.
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