Panlongshan Great Wall

Encompassed Hiking on the Great Wall

Destinations: 7-Day Great Wall Hiking from Huangyaguan to Mutianyu
Suggested Itinerary
Day 1: Arrive in Beijing

Your private guide will greet you in arrivals and you'll be taken by private, professionally-chauffeured car directly to your hotel.

Day 2: The Historic Huangyaguan Section (4km, 3 hours)
Huangyaguan Great Wall

After breakfast, you will be transferred to the Great Wall at Huangyaguan in Tianjin by your Great Wall specialist guide and driver. The journey takes about 3 hours. You will hike about 3 hours from Taipingzhai to Huangyaguan and have a late lunch afterward.

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). When hiking in this section of Great Wall, you will see various watchtowers built in different shapes, which is only found in Huangyaguan. It is unique in that it has various different-shaped watchtowers. There are not many tourists in this area, as it is a remote and seldom visited location.

GOOD TO KNOW

  1. The Great Wall at Huangyaguan is the venue of the annual International Huangyaguan Great Wall Marathon Race, one of the world’s most demanding courses with exhausting ascents, steep descents, and more than 3,700 steps. You will only hike this section once, rather than completing the circuit twice as is required of the marathon runners.
  2. Look out for the two types of bricks — ask your guide why two types were used.

Day 3: Wild Great Wall Disvoery from Gubeikou to Jinshanling (10km, 5 hours)
The Great Wall at Gubeikou

Your hike will start at 9am after breakfast. This section is not as challenging as that in Jiankou. Though you will also hike about 5 hours at the wall, it is still a leisure experience. After the hike you will be driven back to Gubeikou Village.

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 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.

GOOD TO KNOW

  1. The Jinshanling section of the Great Wall is a heaven for photographers.
  2. We guided Australian Geographic on their Great Wall hiking adventure on this section. Their trekking route was right from the Gubeikou section of the Great Wall to the Jinshanling section.


Day 4: Wild Section with Panoramic Views: Jinshanling to Simatai West (3 hours, 5 km)
the Great Wall at Jinshanling

It takes about 20 minutes from your guesthouse to the Great Wall at Jinshanling. Arriving at the wall early, you can photograph the amazing scenery with balanced light and no other tourists. You will hike about 3 hours eastward and get off at Kylin Tower. The east section of Simatai is closed, so you cannot continue eastward.

Compared to the Great Wall at Jiankou, there are more tourists in some parts. However, your guide will guide you to some parts with rare travelers and you can have the wall to yourself, like the Simatai West.

This section is extremely photogenic with panoramic views. Hike and record the bleak but beautiful scenery with wild and ruined walls. The watch towers and varied gradients give constantly wide views and changing perspectives.

There are 15 watch towers along this section, built with flat roofs or upturned eaves. In some two-storey or three-storey watch towers, you can have a wider view over the Great Wall.

A unique hotpot lunch will be waiting for you after you finish the hike and get back to the city. Your guide will help you order dishes. Enjoy the fun of practicing your chopstick skills.

After lunch you will take a relaxation with a traditional reflexology foot massage, which will give you a comfortable ending of your hike. Your private hiking guide will escort you to hotel by 5pm.

Good to Know

The Great Wall at Jinshanling is honored as a photography gallery. Get your camera ready to record the breathtaking scenery along the hike.

Day 5: The Original Great Wall Experience in Jiankou (4 hrs, 3km)
The Great Wall at Jiankou

Though you will hike about 3 kilometer in day 2, it still takes about 4 hours for the rugged steps and the sharp rises and descents in this section. Starting from Xizhazi Village, you will spend about one hour walking up to the wall, and then continue westward to the foot of Sky Stairs (Ladders to the Heaven and you will skip this place), one of the most dangerous place of Jiankou.

The entire Jiankou section was building on the rolling ridgeline, with varied gradients. It is the most photographed Great Wall in recent years due to its authentic wall and its graceful scenery.

You will enjoy a picnic lunch on the Great Wall. This night you will stay at a local famer’s guesthouse.

Day 6: Hiking from Jiankou to Mutianyu (5 hrs, 10 km)
mutianyu great wall beijing

You will start to hike at 8am and will hike about 5 hours on the wall. The hike in day 3 will allow you to experience both original and renovated walls.

Your hike will begin around 8am. The hike on average takes 5 hours. Starting from Xizhazi Village, you will spend one hour walking up to the peak of the entire Great Wall at Jiankou — Zhenbei Building. There you can enjoy a bird’s eye view of Jiankou. It is a great place to photograph the panoramic beauty. Then you will go east to the Great Wall at Mutianyu via several original watchtowers, which are connected by rugged wall. Don’t miss the architectural art of the fortifications — the elaborate brickwork was built with crenelations on both side and curved eaves on some watchtower roofs. Some of the bricks were stamped with symbols. Ask your guide about them. The wild wall to the west is the original Great Wall built in the Ming Dynasty, a dangerous and collapsed section including the section you hike in day 5.

On the way back to BeijingCity, you will stop off to the Olympic venues to see the Bird’s Nest and Water Cube.

A unique hotpot lunch will be waiting for you after you finish the hike and get back to the city. Your guide will help you order dishes. Enjoy the fun of practicing your chopstick skills.

After lunch you will take a relaxation with a traditional reflexology foot massage, which will give you a comfortable ending of your hike. Your private hiking guide will escort you to hotel by 5pm.

Day 7: Depart Beijing

Your guide will meet you at hotel lobby and help you check-out. Sit back and relax as your private driver and guide get you to the airport on time. They will take you right to check-in and say goodbye at the security gate.

Interested? Each tour can be tailored.