Caption: Great Wall of China
Caption: Taipingzhai
Caption: Yonghe Temple
Caption: Huangyaguan

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Journey Snapshot

Activity level: Level 3 Involves a high level of physical activity over an extended period, in terrain that may often be uneven, slippery and steep. You would be expected to carry your own backpack and equipment. Not suitable if you have limited mobility.
Duration: 8 days, 7 nights
Flight information: Flights will depart London Heathrow to arrive into Beijing [PEK] on Day1 before 5pm. Flights will depart back to London Heathrow from Beijing [PEK] on Day 8.
Pickup location: Beijing Airport [PEK]


Choose your own departure date for your group.

Enjoy the dramatic scenery as we walk along sections of the The Great Wall of China - one of the seven wonders of the medieval world.

The Great Wall, which stretches 6000km from the Gobi Desert in the West to the crashing waves and rocks of Shanhaiguan in the East, is one of the seven wonders of the medieval world. Many people visit the wall each year. Over our 8 day trip, we’ll be exploring different sections of the wall in Beijing, Gubeikou, Jinshanling and Mutianyu with a full day hike from Mutianyu to Jiankou to complete the adventure.


Itinerary summary: DAY 1 - Welcome to China
DAY 2 - Beijing, The Forbidden City & Temple of Heaven
DAY 3 - Begin hiking the Great Wall from Huangyaguan
DAY 4 - Huangyaguan to Gubeikou
DAY 5 - Gubeikou to Jinshanling
DAY 6 - Jinshanling to Mutianyu
DAY 7 - Mutianyu to Beijing
DAY 8 - Goodbye to China and Home
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Full Itinerary

DAY 1 - Welcome to China

On arrival in Beijing, we will be met and transferred to the hotel. Following an orientation walk, the group will enjoy a welcome dinner together this evening, where you will meet with your Big Journey Tour Director and discuss the adventures ahead.

Included meals: Dinner 

DAY 2 - Beijing, The Forbidden City & Temple of Heaven

Before we begin hiking across the world-famous Great Wall of China, we take the opportunity today to see some of the other fascinating sites Beijing has to offer. After breakfast at our hotel we will visit Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City and the Temple of Heaven. Tiananmen Square, the biggest city square in the world, was once a yard in the Forbidden city, the palace of the Ming and Qing Dynasties from 1420-1911 AD. The Temple of Heaven, once a place for the Chinese Emperor’s private worship, is now the biggest city park in Beijing for citizens to enjoy their leisure time in.

Included meals: Breakfast 

DAY 3 - Begin hiking the Great Wall from Huangyaguan

After breakfast we will visit East Qing Tomb, a royal mausoleum for many members of the Qing Dynasty. We will tour the underground palace of Empress Dowager Cixi and Emperor Qianlong to learn about the luxurious life of the Manchu ruling class.

We then begin our hike on the Great Wall of China. Today we hike from Taiping Zhai to Huangyaguan. The Great Wall is a series of defensive fortifications which were made of stone or brick, tamped earth, wood, and other materials. Generally the Great Wall runs along an east-west line across the historical northern borders of China. Its purpose was to protect the empire against northern raids and invasions. The oldest sections of the Wall can be traced back as early as the 7th century BC. Since then, the Great Wall has been repeatedly repaired, rebuilt, maintained, and enhanced. The majority of the existing wall is from the time of the Ming Dynasty. An investigation in 2009 concluded that the length of the Great Wall constructed in Ming Dynasty was 8,851.8km.
The excursions and hiking today will take us around 6 hours. Elevation gain will be over 1000m.

Included meals: Breakfast Lunch & Dinner 

DAY 4 - Huangyaguan to Gubeikou

After breakfast at the hotel, we transfer to Gubeikou and continue our hike on the Great Wall. The Gubeikou section of the Great Wall, located in Hebei Province North Beijijng, was first built in the sixth century during the Northern and Southern Dynasties (420-589), and was then rebuilt during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644AD). This section of the wall remains original in style - some parts are steep and exposed and it is imposing. You have to be careful whilst we are hiking here. Tonight we have an opportunity to interact with the local people and experience a slice of the real China. We will overnight in a local inn of East River Village, an inn run by a local village family.
Hiking distance: approx. 4 km, 3 hours.

Included meals: Breakfast Lunch & Dinner 

DAY 5 - Gubeikou to Jinshanling

Before breakfast, take part in a traditional Tai chi class to get you fired up for today's adventure. Today is a full day hike from Gubeikou to Jinshanling. The Wall from Gubeikou to Jinshanling is approximately 10km, nestled on the top of green mountains like a dragon ascending and descending the endless blue sky. At some points the path is narrow and steep to cross over.
Hiking distance: approx. 10 km, 6 hours.

Included meals: Breakfast Lunch & Dinner 

DAY 6 - Jinshanling to Mutianyu

This morning’s hike is from Jinshanling to the Simatai entrance. This section has been restored, making it an easier hike. Some beacon towers have been rebuilt to enable visitors to climb up to enjoy the mountain views from the top of the tower. On the Kylin Beacon Tower, there are text bricks that were inscribed by the soldiers of the past, recording their names and corps.
After lunch we will transfer to Huairou.
Hiking distance: approx. 5 km, 3hours.

Included meals: Breakfast Lunch & Dinner 

DAY 7 - Mutianyu to Beijing

Full day hiking on the Great Wall from Jiankou to Mutianyu. The first section at Jiankou is in untouched condition and steep, running along the top of the mountain top. The Mutianyu section of the wall has been repaired so that it is easier to negotiate later in the day. Admire stunning views as you wonder how they managed to construct this wall at such a height and such a long time ago.
Late in the afternoon we return to Beijing.
This day will be the longest and toughest hiking but the farewell roast Peking duck dinner will taste all the more delicious after our exertions!
Hiking distance: approx. 10 km, 6 hours.

Included meals: Breakfast Lunch & Dinner 

DAY 8 - Goodbye to China and Home

We enjoy a last breakfast together before heading home to tell everyone about our Adventures on the Great Wall of China. You will be transferred to the airport to catch your flights home.

Included meals: Breakfast 
Accommodation: none 


More information

What's includedWhat's not includedImportant information

What's included

  • International flights from London Heathrow [LHR] into Beijing [PEK] on Day 1 and returning from [PEK] on Day 8.
  • Airport transfers to and from Beijing Airport on arrival and departure.
  • Meals and accommodation as indicated in the itinerary.
  • Transport of 1 main large bag from one hotel to the next.
  • All fees
  • Safety communication equipment
  • Safety equipment.
  • Bottled Water
  • Government taxes and levies
  • English speaking tour guide
  • Tour Director from The Big Journey Company as well as the local tour guide (subject to minimum group size being reached.)

What's not included

  • Personal equipment
  • Gratuities 
  • Travel and medical Insurance
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Meals or transfers other than those detailed on the itinerary
  • Drinks (other than water) and personal spending
  • Visas
  • Optional activities
  • Increases in government taxes or fuel surcharges

Important information

  • Visas are required for citizens of most countries in America and Western Europe. Please consult your local Chinese Consulate for up to date information on Visa requirements.
  • This adventure is limited to a maximum number of 19 passengers.
  • Please let The Big Journey Company know prior to travelling if you have any medical needs or take any medication that we need to be made aware of to ensure that you have a safe and pleasant tour.
  • Check in is after 2-3pm and check out is before 10am unless otherwise specified in the itinerary.
  • Cancellation 90 – 0 days prior to departure cancellation fee is 100%. It is your responsibility to ensure the correct travel insurance in place to protect you against the need to cancel your holiday. Deposits are non-refundable and final payments are due 14 weeks prior to departure.
  • Further terms and conditions apply and will be provided upon request or at the time of booking. The Big Journey Company reserves the right to withdraw any offer prior to accepting a reservation request. This does not affect your statutory rights. This offer is subject to availability and space is limited. 

The big journey promise

The big journey company was set up with one goal in mind, to share our passion for inspirational cultures, destinations and experiences. Over the last 10 years we have had the privilege to escort thousands of travellers on awe inspiring and sometimes life changing journeys. Our promise to every guest who joins us is that we will do everything possible to make sure your journey not only exceeds expectations but delivers at least one moment of true amazement.

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Holiday tours are operated by The Big Journey Company Limited. Registered in England. Registered office: Marron Bank, Branthwaite, Cumbria, CA14 4SZ. Registered number: 6532140. VAT number: 290797457. The Big Journey Company Limited is a member of The Travel Trust Association member number U5675 and holds an Air Travel Organiser’s License number T7282.