Monday, March 7, 2016

Five-day Great Wall Trekking & Camping TOUR 5X: Shixiaguan-Badaling-Huanghuacheng-Xishuiyu-Jiankou-Mutianyu-Gubeikou-Jinshanling-West Simatai Great Wall Expedition

This five-day program is the perfect way to explore the wilder side of the Great Wall. We start at Badaling, but this isn’t the touristy Badaling that’s always packed with tourists; this other Badaling has been left in its natural state and is largely avoided by visitors. The hiking here is a challenge, but it eases a bit when we reach Shixiaguan, a largely intact portion of the Great Wall set against a lovely backdrop of mountains and rolling hills. The scene then shifts to Huanghuacheng-Xishuiyu, a hike featuring both restored and unrestored Great Wall, and which features a Great Wall bonus, a portion of the wall underwater! We’ll then set off for Jiankou, which has become one of the premier Great Wall hiking spots due to its breathtaking ruins and mountain setting. We’ll soon cross into Mutianyu, one of the Great Wall’s most photographed spots and which has played host to countless world leaders and dignitaries. The toboggan ride on the way down should not be missed! Our final leg brings us to Gubeikou, a strategically vital part of the Great Wall which even saw action in the 1930s against the Japanese invasion. This will lead us to Jinshanling, a section famed for its watchtowers and grand brickwork. It is here, in one of Jinshanling’s watchtowers where we will camp overnight. We finish at the western portion of Simatai (the rest is closed for the time being), a steep portion where the hiking is tougher than usual.

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