Top things to do in The Great Wall

Walls in The Great Wall


Famed for its Ming-era guard towers and excellent views, the 3km-long section of wall at Mùtiányù, northeast of Běijīng in Huáiróu County, is largely a recently restored Ming dynasty structure that was built upon an…
Walls in The Great Wall


Jīnshānlǐng Great Wall, near the town of Gǔběikǒu, is the most remote part of the wall to reach from Běijīng. That means fewer people to interrupt your hike along a steep section of the wall that winds through some …
Walls in The Great Wall

Jiànkòu Great Wall

For stupefying hikes along perhaps Běijīng’s most incomparable section of wall, head to the rear section of the Jiànkòu Great Wall, accessible from Huáiróu. It’s a 40-minute walk uphill from the drop-off at Xīzhàzi …
Walls in The Great Wall


The stirring remains at Sīmǎtái, built during the reign of Ming dynasty emperor Hongwu, make for an exhilarating Great Wall experience. Located in Mìyún County (密云县; Mìyún Xiàn), close to the far-flung town of Gǔběi…
Walls in The Great Wall


This restored section of the Great Wall is Běijīng’s most-visited chunk of the brick-clad bastion. Nixon, Thatcher, Reagan, Gorbachev and Queen Elizabeth have all stamped their feet on Bādálǐng.
Museum in Badaling

China Great Wall Museum

This museum offers a comprehensive history of the Wall, from its origins as an earthen embankment in the far-off Qin dynasty (221–207 BC) to the Ming-era battlements you see today. There are decent English captions …
Lake in Zhuangdaokou

Huánghuāchéng Great Wall Lakeside Reserve

Known as the 'Great Wall in Water', this lake park contains several sections of the Great Wall that were submerged under water with the damming of the Hàomíng Reservoir (灏明湖; Hàomíng Hú).
Chinese in Mutianyu

Yì Sōng Lóu Restaurant

This restaurant up by the main entrance to Mùtiányù Great Wall serves family-style Chinese food. Inexpensive, considering the location.
Chinese in Jinshanling

Jīnshān Fànguǎn

One of the few restaurants by the west gate of Jīnshānlǐng Great Wall that stays open in winter. It has an English menu.
Chinese in Badaling

Ātài Bāozi

Just up from the east car park at Bādálǐng, this place does OK dumplings, as well as rice and noodle dishes. It has a picture menu, so you can point and pick.