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Walking the Great Wall

From £1299 for 9 days
Trip Overview
Stepping out across the peaceful semi-ruin of a section of the Great Wall is like walking in the footsteps of the past. Far from the tourist crowds we are able to get a great sense of the scale and majesty of this remarkable piece of engineering without rushing through in a big group. We trek along various contrasting sections of the wall, both dilapidated and rebuilt stretches. The old portions have a romantic feel, but the new ones may look odd to people who are used to seeing their ancient monuments in a poor state, though since the wall was constructed over a 2000 year period, the new sections are just a continuation of that process. We will get closer to day-to-day life in rural China before returning to Beijing, a city steeped in history yet plunging headlong into modernity.
Essential Info
Starts: Arrive Beijing; free afternoon and Beijing duck dinner
Ends: Our trips ends today in Beijing after breakfast.
Ages: Min 16
Theme: Walking
Trip Code: ETCW
Activity Level:     
Countries visited: China
What's Included


All breakfasts, 6 lunches and 6 dinners are included


5 nights basic hotels and 3 nights standard hotel 6 days point-to-point walking with full porterage


Trip Highlights

•    Trek alongside mountains on lesser-visited parts of the wall

•    Experience rural life first hand in little villages

•    Guided tour or Beijing's 'hutongs', Tiananmen Square & the Forbidden City

•    Possibility to add Terracotta Warrior extension

Itinerary & Notes
After arriving into Beijing, the afternoon is free to relax after the overnight flight. There is a welcome dinner organised for the group allowing us to sample one of the cities most famous dishes: Beijing duck. Vegetarians, do not fear - there will be an array of different dishes on a lazy Susan to choose from. *Dong Fang Hotel or similar*
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Fantastic holiday walking the Great Wall .... great group leader and lovely group of people. We both found The Wall absolutely amazing and China is such an interesting country to visit. Would love to go back to visit another part.
An excellent overall experience, really enjoyed the walking, especially the less touristy parts of the wall. The hotel rooms in Beijing and Xi'an were looking a little tired but, they were clean with comfortable beds and good showers. The homesteads were fine with very welcoming hosts. The food overall was very good, although breakfast was a little limited if you like your traditional "English" style to start the day.
Walking the Great Wall in the less touristy sections (in fact almost no other people at all) together with the Xi'an extension to see the Terracotta Warriors surpassed my expectations. It also opened my eyes to a whole new positive side of China that my preconceived ideas had not imagined. A wide range of walking from the flat in Beijing to the undulating and steep on the Wall, on even paths to shingle and scrambling. Delicious food throughout, far superior and less salty than in the UK and friendly, curious locals. Topped off by an absolutely superb Leader/Guide Jerry, whose infectious enthusiasm, wide knowledge of all things Chinese, sense of humour and ability to tell jokes in English made for a truly memorable experience.
Fabulous trip but, as with all Exodus holidays, the success is dependent on the tour guide. We had Jerry and he was faaaantastic! What a guy! Knowledgeable, committed and with a wonderful sense of humour. Thank you Jerry - you made the trip gloriously memorable.
Walking the great Wall of China is invariably on lots of Intrepid travellers wish lists or objectives - simply just do it. You will not regret making the decision. If you have not been to China before it is both an introduction to the country (especially Beijing) and walking one of the most documented locations in the world. The majority of the meals are inclusive but this is a bonus as it includes both restaurants in Beijing and and more authentic Chinese cuisine in the Home stays. I do not think I will not bother with a Chinese restaurant again in the UK.
I thoroughly enjoyed all aspects of the trip. The scenery - the wall and the surrounding mountains - was stunning and constantly changing. The weather was perfect with mostly warm sunny days with cool evenings. Everywhere we stayed from good quality hotels to basic rural homestays provided great food and hospitality. Our group leader, Jerry, was excellent and I felt very lucky to be away with such a lovely group of fellow travellers. Finally and perhaps most importantly the Chinese people I met were warm, welcoming, interesting as well as curious about us and almost without exception delightful.
Space, and the (temporary) frontier abound provided that you go boldly, up, more up, and even more up; cast aside fears of teeming hordes, and remember, the people, and the people alone, are the motive force in the making of world history. At times, you become the 'attraction' - videoconferencing a chap's wife on her drive home so she could practice her English (at the top of the Wall, naturally). That was a first. High fiving hundreds of school kids, while teachers convulsed with laughter (on the wall too), in a society where physical contact is not a thing, also a first. Underpinning it all, a long past with, to quote a fellow traveller, "zero history of democracy". And the kittens really do want their fluffy tummies tickled, oh yes they do.
What a great trip ! 6 hiking days and 2 days seeing the sights in Beijing with Pemma our Tibetan guide and our mixed bunch of 16, comprised of couples and solos making for a great trip to China. ( I didn’t book the Xian extension ) the hikes are tough as they are up and down the many ridges that the wall sought to protect and most are on the “Wild Wall” where we had the fantastic views all to ourselves, so expect some tender knees and sore calves as the days progress. Accommodation in the country is in friendly and comfortable homestays and Don Fang in Beijing is about 30 minutes walk to the Forbidden City and Tianenmen square etc. China is a real mix of old and new and the vibrant colours are a treat for the eyes. Ticking the Great Wall box with this Exodus trip was memorable and as is the case on many a trip there were only minor things that could be improved but take it from me, if you’re thinking of booking then take the leap, you’ll love it.
spent 6 days walking the great wall of china and then a walking tour of beijing. we then went on a sleeper train to xian where we saw the terra cotta army
Excellent trip from beginning to end and thoroughly recommend it. This was my third Exodus trip and I can not recommend Exodus enough as a travel company!
Another well organised and memorable trip by Exodus. Varied activity and ran very smoothly including transport, accommodation and food. Guide very knowledgeable and passionate about his country. Would definitely recommend.
The Great Wall is even more mind-blowing than in your imagination and doing this fantastic trip at the end of October is a great time to see it. We had beautiful autumn colours, with pleasant, warm days and slightly cooler mornings and evenings, and it's not crowded with visitors. It's suitable for people who are fit and enjoy walking, but it's most definitely not a trek, so if that's your thing you may not enjoy it as much as we did. You get to visit different parts of the wall - from the restored and more touristy, to completely wild and unrestored and we appreciated seeing these different facets. The toboggan at Mutianyou is a hoot so it's well worth giving yourself time to fit that in. The food was good quality and varied (though see below if you're veggie).The hotel in Beijing (Golden Sun Commercial Hotel) was very nice; a little away from the city centre but we enjoyed wandering the local hutongs, parks and temples and we easily got into town via the subway (Guang'anmennei station is an easy walk from the hotel).
First time I have done something like this before but it has been one of the best trips I have done. Wish I could of been out there longer
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