Last fall marked my first trip to mainland China, and as the Great Wall was at the top of our bucket list, we headed to Beijing to see the sights and visit one of the most spectacular man-made structures in the world. From our home base in Beijing, we hired the wonderful John Yellowcar to drive us out to the Mutianyu section of the Great Wall. We chose Mutianyu after much Trip Advisor research, as this was the section of the wall with a chair lift up and a toboggan ride down (the cheesy tourist in me loved the idea of the toboggan ride, and it proved to be incredibly fun). Mutianyu is also not as crowded as some of the other sections, such as Badaling. We were able to hike along the wall for several hours, enjoying the view from each of the watchtowers along our route.
We arrived early in the morning and purchased tickets for both up-and-down trips we wanted to take. First, a cable car both directions, then a chair lift up and toboggan ride down. We chose to do both so that we could hike to the highest watchtower in the section first, then, on the other side, do the toboggan ride. Of course, you can also hike the entire section.
The last little bit of the hike was steep but there was the reward of an amazing view. We were lucky to have had a (relatively) clear day to climb.
After our cable car down, we made our way through the merchants set up along the trail to the chair lift. Along the way up on the chair lift, we could see the fun we were about to have on the toboggan course down!
Mutianyu Great Wall
60km from Beijing