Summer Palace and Great Wall
Replies: 4 - Last Post: Oct 9, 2012 6:40 AM Last Post By: volker81
Oct 5, 2012 7:38 PM
Summer Palace and Great WallHi
Maybe many people know about this already but it’s posted for those who don’t. Due to something being lost in translation our taxi driver didn’t take us the Summer Palace, but rather to Zizhuyuan (Purple Bamboo Garden). I’m very glad he did. From there we got a boat and travelled down a canal to Kunming Lake, or maybe it’s called South Lake at that point, and walked on to the Summer Palace. A great, unplanned, way of getting to the Summer Palace. Zizhuyuan is near the National Library so it would not be too far to walk to from the underground station there.
Also, did a part of the Great Wall that is newly opened, I believe. It’s called Juyongguan and is near, and similar to, Badaling. What a few people had were one of those collapsible hiking sticks. I’m very fit for my age but I wouldn’t have minded one to assist on some of the more “interesting” parts of the climb.
Posted for what it’s worth.
Oct 5, 2012 11:57 PM
1Juyongguan near Badaling exists for many many years, I think besides Badaling it was the second part of the wall which was restored. But from what I heard it is far less visited than Badaling, maybe because it is so steep and quite a challenge.
But when in Beijing I realized, that now hostels offer a new "wild wall trek" from Shixiaguan to Badaling. The pictures on the flyer look nice, although some look, like they have been made at the route Jinshanling to Simatai (or maybe it is quite similar to this route). I guess, they offer this route because of the officially closed part at Simatai. This new trek is about 7,5 km and should take 4 to 5 hours according to the flyer. They say, it is one of the best preserved "Wild Great Wall" and that you have to be physically fit to do it.
Oct 6, 2012 11:37 AM
2The boat ride mentioned above actually starts from near the zoo, in a boat basin behind the old Stalinist-style International Exhibition Center. It uses the old Ming canal system and goes to Zizhuyuan where it must go through a lock, then onward to the Summer Palace south end of Lake. The entire journey takes about 3-ish hours but is a very pleasant way to access the SP if you have time. Purple Bamboo Park is an intermediate point where one can get off or on. (And it's an interesting social scene especially on weekends, good if you are in the area or have many days in Beijing and have already seen the Big Sights.)
Unfortunately, the boat rides go offline in winter--service ends somewhere between Oct 15 and Nov 1, and doesn't start again until early April.
Oct 6, 2012 2:16 PM
3OP, nice info. Thanks.
As I recall this Summer Palace was built after the destruction of the previous one in 1860 (by an Anglo-French military force) and the canal to it came about for the convenience of the Empress Dowager.
The canal freeze over in the winter but the path next to it still makes for a pleasant outing--for the those in the neighborhood.
Oct 9, 2012 6:40 AM
4absolutely avoid badaling!
it is chinese wall plastic wonderland! it has nothing to do with the real historic great wall. it is an artificial "great wall wonderland"!
i recommend sections like mutianyu.
http://www.greatwallforum.com/ <-- will be a good adress for detailed questions and has lots of pictures!
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