Great Wall of China Trek

About This Trip:

It is carefully designed for the Great Wall enthusiast who would like to experience the best parts of the eastern Wall, but who has only limited time. We start on the ocean, at Dragon’s Head, and hike eastward to Dongjiakou, where descendants of the original builders still proudly maintain “their” section of the wall. From here, we hike to the massive fortress at Huangyaguan, which includes part of the Wall which is constructed over a body of water. One of our last stops is Simatai, the best example of the Ming Dynasty wall, which is listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage site. A really unique experience!


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Day 1 Beijing, Temple of Heaven

Upon arrival in the morning you are transferred to your hotel in the city centre.  En-route, you will have the opportunity to see the National Olympic Stadium known as the "bird's nest", because of its unique design, as well as the National Swimming Centre, known as the "water cube".

After lunch you will visit the Temple of Heaven complex where emperors once prayed for good harvests, making offerings of grain, silk and animals. Dinner will be in a local restaurant where you will begin to explore the delights of Chinese cuisine

Day 2 Tian’anmen Square, Forbidden City, Hutongs

In the morning, you will visit Tian’anmen Square followed by a tour of the Forbidden City.

In the afternoon, riding in a pedi-cab, or on a bicycle, you will explore the traditional neighborhoods called Hutongs (literally, alleyways), where you will get an idea of what the entire city once looked like.  You will be able to drink tea in a local person’s house and see how they still share a courtyard and facilities with other families.

Peking duck dinner will be arranged at a popular local restaurant in the Hutong district.

Day 3 Laolongtou (Old Dragon’s Head, Shanhaiguan (5-6 kms, 2 hours)

After breakfast you will be driven 4 hours northeast of Beijing (315km) to Laolongtou (Elev. 6m) (known as the Old Dragon’s Head) where the Great Wall meets the sea. You will check into your hotel first and have lunch before visiting the Dragon’s Head, the adjacent temple and the various museum exhibits.

You will then take your first steps along the Great Wall, walking for approximately 6kms into Shanhaiguan(Elev. 32m).

On reaching Shanhaiguan you will walk along the restored garrison walls, visit the Great Wall Museum and explore the redeveloped old town.  Your day ends with a short drive (20km) to a nearby scenic spot where you can view a section of the Great Wall (Elev. 478m) dramatically plunging down the sides of a valley - a truly spectacular sight.

You will then return to your hotel at Laolongtou for dinner.

Day 4, Dongjiakou Great Wall walk (6-9 kms, 3-4 hours), Zunuhua

After breakfast a 2 hour drive (80km) will take you to Dongjiakou (Elev. 135m) where there are three sections of the Great Wall open to walkers.  En-route you will have a short stop at Panjiakou to take photos of the point at which the wall crosses a large reservoir.  On reaching Dongjiakou you will follow a good path uphill for 20-30 minutes before you step onto the Great Wall itself.

After you have completed your walk, there will be time to explore the village at the foot of the wall before driving to Zunhua (approx 4 hours, 210km) where your hotel awaits.

Day 5, Eastern Qing Tombs, Huangyaguan walk (12 kms, 4 hours)

This morning you will have a 1 hour’s drive (40km) to reach the Eastern Qing Tombs where you will explore the splendid imperial mausoleums of the Qing Dynasty including the burial chamber of Emperor Xiaoling.

Having completed a tour of the Qing Tombs you will drive for a further hour to the Huangyaguan section of the Wall (Elev. 738m); famous as the starting point of the annual Great Wall Marathon.

3 hours hike on this section of the wall you will be driven to your hotel in the city of Miyun.

Day 6, Hike from Simatai to Jinshanling Great Wall (13 kms, 6 – 7 hours)

You will depart from your hotel and drive for 1.5 hours (80km) to reach the foot of the eastern section of the Simatai Great Wall.  Hike from Simatai to jinshanling which takes about 5—6 hours on the wall

Day 7, Hiking from Jinshanling to Gubeikou (12 kms, 5 – 6 hours)

After a light breakfast you will set off to Gubeikou, which the scenery is quite similar to previous section. And it takes about 5-6 hours to finish your hiking, then you will be transfer to your hotel

Day 8, Jiankou to Mutianyu 5 hours (13 km, 4-5 hours)

In the morning there is a 1 hour’s drive (40km) to the foot of the Jiankou Great Wall.

Today’s walk takes you along one of the most magnificent and virtually deserted sections of wall. After about 4 hours you will get to a section of restored Great wall known as Mutianyu (Elev. 586m) which, by way of total contrast to the peace and quiet of the previous few hours, will have many tourists.

Leaving the Wall behind you will stroll to the nearby ‘Schoolhouse’ restaurant for lunch where you can celebrate your Great Wall adventure.  2hrs’ drive (90km) will take you back to Beijing and a farewell evening meal. 

Day 9 Beijing/Home

Transfer you to the airport, the end of trip

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