Although the chinese great wall spans five provinces and
stretches over 6,700 km, the majority of tourist travel
to Beijing to tour the Great Wall. Just in the outskirts
of Beijing city, there are several sections of the great
wall that are in excellent condition, and are the most popular
destinations for China Great Wall tours.
These Great Wall tour destinations include:
- Badaling Great Wall
- Jiayuguan Pass
- Jingshanling Great Wall
- Juyongguan Pass
- Mutianyu Great Wall
- Simatai Great Wall
China Great Wall - Badaling Great Wall
Badaling great wall is one of the most often visited great
wall sections. Badaling means Eight Prominent Peaks. It
was rebuilt during the Ming Dynasty in the 16th century.
It extends all the way from Shanhai Pass (coast of Bohai
Bay) to Jiayu Pass in Gansu province. Fortresses were built
at strategic points, and beacon towers at commanding points.
Fires were lit to signal incoming invasion from the north.
During the rebuilding in the Ming Dynasty, Badaling was
rebuilt using bricks and granite stone slabs, and it still
stands tall today. Badaling Great Wall measures 6.6 meters
high, 6.5 meters wide at the base, and 5.5 meters wide at
the top. The top surface is paved with 3 to 4 layers of
bricks. Badaling Great Wall is wide enough for 10 soldiers
to walk shoulder to shoulder across the pathway.
Great Wall Photo: Standing
at the highest peak of Badaling and taking a picture of
the Great Wall and other tourists - it was quite a breath
taking view. The surrounding mountains are covered with
plants and ancient trees. Planning a 2.5 to 3 hour visit
Mutianyu Great Wall
Mutianyu Great Wall lies about 70km north east of Beijing
city, winding for over 2,000 meters. Construction of Mutianyu
Great Wall began in mid 6th century, and was restored during
the Ming Dynasty. Unlike Badaling Great Wall, Mutianyu isn't
as crowded, and received less tourists, so its a nice alternative
for those who prefer to avoid crowds.
The wall is a little over 7 meters in height, and about
5 meters wide at the top, similar to that of Badaling.
Travel China Great Wall Tour Tips
While there are rail carts to bring you up to the top of
Badaling Great wall, it's still physically demanding to
climb the Great Wall of china - especially in mid summer
at noon when the sun is up high and temperatures can go
above mid 30's. (Also, taking the rail carts cost a little
extra on top of entrance fee.)
- Wear runners
- Bring a light backpack to hold your miscellaneous articles
- Bring plenty of water - while there are vendors at the
entrance and exit of Badaling, there's none on top of
the Great Wall, so have some water ready when you're up
- If the sun is a problem for you, bring some sunscreen
lotion, or bring an umbrella - may sound silly, but many
people do bring umbrellas in mid summer to block out the
sun (I do too!)
- Wear lose and comfortable clothing
- Having some paper tissues at hand is always handy
- Don't forget your camera!