When to Go
As early as you can especially on the weekend. Beijing traffic was no joke. We luckily left at a great time (8am from Qianmen) and even then we ran into traffic. I took a little nap while on the drive up and listened to an audiobook.
We got there at about 9am and people were already on their way down as we headed up! They avoided the humidity and crowds.
Where to Go
Did you know that the great wall wasn't just one huge wall? I learned a few years ago in my Chinese studies course that the Great Wall was several sections built over many centuries.
According to our guide, we visited the prettiest and most quiet part of the Great Wall. The Mutianyu (or Mu Tian Yu) section was further out than the most popular part of the wall. So, we beat the crowds when we got in early and got some amazing pictures. As well that part of the wall was restored beautifully!
What to Do
Take the Cable Car
A nice warm up to the grandeur of the Great Wall was when we took the cable cars up. We viewed lush greenery below us as we ascended to the top.
Hike the watch towers
If you won't have a guide, before you go, ensure that you check out which area of the wall you'd like to explore most then prioritize it. The humidity was intense as we trekked up the steep steps between each watch tower. It made each step hard as brick path wove into each check point. I loved it!
Take the Slide Down
The most fun part about the Great Wall for me wasn't actually the wall. It was when we left and took the slide down the Great Wall to the bottom. It was an absolute blast and I would do it again. The loops, hills and turns in the middle of the green landscape felt like a dream. On some parts we moved so fast it felt like a roller coaster. It went by pretty fast but I was happy we did it. *Tip: get on the slide before 11:30. The line up got pretty full as everyone was ready to trek down the wall for lunch.
What to Eat
After our descent down the slide, we were super hungry. Our lovely guide called ahead and ordered us an amazing lunch. We drove for 10 minutes to Xiao Long Pu a
She ordered us a spread of sweet and sour pork tomatoes, greens, cod and fried rice.
I was beyond excited to have crossed the great wall off of my bucket list. Are you planning on visiting the Great Wall? Let me know in the comments below.