The Great Wall Of China
Flickr photo: davidberkowitz
When people think of China usually the first thing that comes to mind is The Great Wall of China. The Great Wall winds past mountains and forests across China and is one of the most popular landmarks in China.
The wall is actually a series of walls that were built, maintained and in some cases rebuilt over the course of three dynasties and pre-unified China. During the Warring States period the warlords built walls to keep other states out, however once Qin Shi Huang unified China he destroyed these walls and built his own.
Most of this wall no longer exists and what you see now is mainly from the Han (206BC-220AD) and Ming (1368-1644) Dynasties.
More and more of the Great Wall is being renovated by the Chinese Government, though a lot remains "wild" and dangerous to hike across.
In this guide, we'll discuss the three main sections of the wall closest to Beijing, that have been renovated as close to its former glory as possible.
Badaling - When you see photos of tourists at The Great Wall chances are they were at Badaling. Very popular section so expect it to be busy.
Juyongguan - A lot older designed/made walls and buildings can be found here.
Mutianyu - Probably the most family friendly of the sections closest to Beijing. Safe and best-preserved section.
How to get there:
This would depend on where you want to go as the wall is estimated to be 13,170.70 (21,196.18km) miles long! It would take around 18 months to hike from one end to the other!
Badaling - Buses 877 (Direct service) or 919. Both depart from Deshengmen Bus Station (Go to Jishuitan Station via Underground Line 2). Alternatively, take the S2 train from Beijing North Railway Station to Badaling Railway Station.
Juyongguan - You can take bus Chang 68 from Shahe Bus Sation) or go to Bejing North Station and take train S2 and get off at Badaling Railway Station. You can then take a free shuttle bus to Badaling Bus Station and take bus 879.
Mutianyu - Take the 916 bus to Huairou Beidajie Station and take the H23, H24, H35, or H36 to Mutianyu Roundabout. Note that there is also an express 916 service which only takes around an hour.
Entrance to all sections is 45CNY. Children under 3.9 feet (1.2 meters) in height are allowed to enter for free.
Prices and opening times are subject to change but are accurate as of April 2016. Please note we are not responsible for these changes.