The Great Wall

Famous around the world, the Great Wall is one of the top sites near Beijing. It’s what everyone wants to see–and you can’t see it from space, so you have to go there yourself. Here’s where to go and how to get there.

Badaling.

This is where the tourist hordes go, both Chinese and foreign. There’s little authenticity here, and it’s a big tourist trap in many ways. But the views are still spectacular, and it’s the section of the wall closest to Beijing, making it easy to get to. Plus it’s easier for those who have a hard time walking.

Mutianyu

A better choice. The Mutianyu section is surrounded by forest.

Simitai

This would be our highest recommendation on where to go. Unfortunately, the area is closed at the moment–and nobody really knows why. Our fear is that this beautiful area is being destroyed by developers. We’ll see.