(Climbing to) the Great Wall


I was having two main targets in my trip to China. The first was to see the Terracotta Army, which I talked about in my previous post. The other was to see the Great Wall.

In fact, I think and I believe that the Great Wall should be on the top list of traveller and if I try to become a “true” traveller, I must see it. I did some researches before my trip and I discovered that there are several starting points to see the Wall from Beijing. Badaling part is the easiest and most touristic part. I heard that this part of the Wall was renovated in the 50s and may not be the original Wall. In addition to that, there are also many tourists in Badaling and if you read the comments in TripAdvisor, people are saying that they felt in Badaling like in a Disney world. Hence this option was eliminated at first.

Then I did a detailed search on the internet and I found a club called Beijinghikers. This seemed to me a professional tour which bring people to the “untouched” part of the Wall hence I registered myself to this organization.

There are of course many tours to the Wall, depending on your physical condition and time limitations. I must confess that I was expecting “not easy” but “manageable” hiking to the Wall with this tour. I was mistaken! But my experience of climbing to the Wall with them had been a “true story” for me which I will tell to everybody until the end of my life. The “simple” hiking which I assumed turned out to be unforgettable moments of my life.

The tour was targeting to hike to the Nine-Eyes Tower of the Great Wall, which is on the west side of Jiankou. After 2 hours of travel on a air conditioned bus, we arrived at the end of a road (900 metres above the sea) which immersed to the wild nature afterwards. The route which we supposed to do was 8 km. but our guides told us that we will feel as if it’s 20 km. Packed with lots of waters, we started to climb in a bushy area. That day it was one of the hottest days, but we were in the open air and within the nature. After having climbed almost half an hour, I felt that I was exhausted. I am not a very sportive person, and it was my first hiking experience! But with help of our guides I managed to climb to the top of the mountains, at the 1200 metres of altitude, we came to the Nine-Eyes Tower. At that moment, the whole chain of mountains decorated with the Great Walls and its towers were lying in front of us, a bundle of  feelings of solitude, peacefulness and history were accompanying us. No more words to say. Maybe some pictures will help you understand the beauty of what I’d seen and felt there!

Here are the pictures from the Wall to where we climbed!

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PS: thousands of thanks to the Beijinghikers group, especially to the team members, Jun, Tina and other staff who succeeded to bring me to the top of the mountains to live this fantastic world!

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