Great Wall of China from Beijing
Replies: 4 - Last Post: Mar 23, 2012 1:44 PM Last Post By: philmar
Mar 20, 2012 2:30 PM
As my signature link indicttaes photography is a passion of mine. Which wall site is the most photogenic and what is the best way to get there? I'd like to have an unguided tour if possible. Be dropped off at one spot and picked up at a predetermined time and spot later. Do all the tours force you to waste time in souvenir shops?
Any recommendations? I'd even consider a private transportation of it isn't rediculouly expensive.
Any thoughts are greatly appreciated.
Mar 21, 2012 9:48 PM
1I've been to both the Badaling and Mutianyu secitons of the Great Wall and of these two I felt Mutianyu was the more photogenic. This likely was influenced by there being many less people there than at Badaling. Depending on when you go though, you're likely to be battling a large number of tourists at either when attempting to get a shot. I'd go to Google Images and do a search on both section names and see what each section has to offer.
Yes, the tours will make a shopping stop or two of some sort. You can of course use public transportation but, likely you're best bet is to hire a car and a driver. Even then you need to make clear that you do not want to make any shopping stops. If staying at a hostel you can see if they know someone they'd recommend. Hiring through a hotel is usually more costly, but if you speak Chinese, or have someone with you who does, I've found that the hotel doormen or bell boys usually have someone they'd recommend at a reasonable price, than if arranged through the hotel front desk or Concierge.
Mar 22, 2012 9:03 PM
2Thanks PangJun - my wife speaks Cantonese and a little Mandarin. She learned Mandarin in Shanghai and says she has difficulty with Beijing Mandarin. She won't be going to the Wall as she's seen it numerous times (she worked in Beijing a few years ago). We're staying at a nice hotel and have read that the hotel tours are epensive. Maybe I'll go to a hostel and inquire there or get her to talk to a hotel employee (OTHER than the concierge wink wink)
Mar 23, 2012 3:17 AM
3You might first check with the hotel desk and find out their rate for comparison purposes, and it is possible they might have a competitive rate. I once asked the doorman, who spoke pretty good English, at a 4 star hotel in Xi'an (about 3 years ago) if he had any recommendations for a car and driver. He said he had a friend in the hotel who could arrange them for a good price and then took me to meet him. The friend turned out to be the hotel's Manager, who actually did arrange a driver and mini van at a good price- but not through the hotel (I think it was 300 RMB for the day). On the same trip though in Wuhan the hotel wanted 1600 RMB for a car and driver for the day, but a bell boy at the hotel arranged with a friend to drive us around in a nice new car for 100 RMB, so it pays to shop around.
Mar 23, 2012 1:44 PM
(4 star Hotel)
From US$155.60 per night
(0 star Hotel)
From US$22.12 per night
(4 star Hotel)
From US$168.31 per night