One of the real highlights of my recent trip to China was definitely The Great Wall. This might sound a little cheesy or predictable, but prior to actually visiting The Wall, it didn’t really hold any interest for me; it was something that I kinda felt just had to be done, and I did not expect to be blown away by it.
But I was.
If you’re staying in or around Beijing, there are a few different section of the walls nearby, but my sister had heard from a friend that the quieter and least tourist-y area was Mutianyu, so that’s where we headed. The easiest way to get there is to hire a driver with a car, which costs around 500 yuan, or £50, which can take up to four people; this may seem like a lot but its almost 2 hours drive away and you’ll appreciate the air-conditioning, plus there’s no having to wait for buses!
After buying tickets from the information office, shuttle buses which run every 10-20 minutes will take you some of the way up the mountain, where you then get two options for getting up to the wall. Option number 1: you can walk the series of steps and slopes up the steep mountain side, or option number 2: cable cars whizz you up! And once you’re on the wall, you’ll just be blown away..
The Wall runs as far as the eye can see, over the peak of the mountains and beyond. Some parts are flat while others are crazy steep, and I suddenly understood why its such a challenge when people walk the wall for charity!
Mutianyu is one of the best preserved sections of the wall, and I would thoroughly recommend giving it a visit if you’re in the area. Plus, if you don’t fancy the cable car back down, you’ve got the option of a toboggan back down to the shuttle buses!
Is China on your travel bucket list?