Wednesday, October 30, 2013

The Great Wall of China - Mutianyu

This post is mostly pictures (woohoo!), some comments and one tip. The Wall is of course interesting in itself, but the more interesting story is how we got here. You can find it [here]. Like I said in the other post, we specifically chose to be in Beijing in late October so we could be at the Great Wall for Brian's birthday. I'm pretty sure he enjoyed it ;)

I've never considered that you have to hike up to the Great Wall. 
I know now that you do.

It does make sense. 
After all, the Great Wall is on a mountain. 
Not at the bottom of a mountain.

This watchtower was technically "off limits."

"Off limits" to the people who don't try :)
This section of the wall is not nearly as restored as other parts. 
It was interesting to see in contrast to the rest of the Mutinayu section.

Mutianyu Bathroom Tip: 
There is one bathroom up here. 
Keep that in mind. 
The hikable section is only 1.86 mi. long, 
but it seems longer with all the stairs. 
And even longer when you have to pee. 

We found a broom. Which means obligatory Harry Potter shot.

We made the right choice of what section to visit for fall. Isn't it beautiful!?

The next pictures are of us going up that steep part in the distance. It's not the fact that you're climbing stairs, or the degree of incline, but that there is SO MANY OF THEM.

Trying to get a good picture of how steep these stairs actually were. 
(they weren't actually that bad, but they were quite steep and there were A LOT of them!)

Taking a break. 

We made it to the top! 
What's crazy though is that you could go even higher than this. We opted not to since we hadn't yet arranged our transportation back to Beijing and the sun was setting. We didn't really feel like being trapped out in China mountains.

Headed back down. This is a pretty good idea of the steep-ness. 
There's a part on the Great Wall that is even steeper (Jiankou section)!


This was a little pagoda we found on our hike down.

Happy Birthday, Brian Ciccotelli!

Getting to Mutinayu was a little stressful, but going back to Beijing was pretty simple. Only slightly stressful because we hadn't arranged transportation out of the middle-of-nowhere in advance. 

We made sure to get off the Great Wall by sundown so we would be able to pick up a car. We were able to get a shared car for RMB25 each to Huairou. It was dark when we got dropped off in Huairou. From there, we had a list of buses that we could catch back to Beijing (we took 916). Another 2 hours later we were home!

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