Guaranteed camping inside the watchtower!
A few agents claim they can do so but that's not true. What they usually mean is that they may take you to the foot of the Great Wall to camp on the ground or to sleep at a guesthouse. Not us. For each participant (even children), we must pay a hefty relic preserving fee to the Great Wall administration office. This fee allows for you to camp on the Great Wall, hence why the price for this program is higher than most. Great Wall Adventure Club (GWAC) is the only company approved by the Great Wall Administration Office to offer camping for international guests. This is what sets us apart from other operators.
This program starts at Huanghuacheng, a section of Great Wall, which in the spring and summer features lush flowers blooming, beacon towers, and even a section of the wall that runs underwater! From there we'll drive to Jiankou, where you will embark on what is perhaps the best Great Wall hike. Jiankou, located in small farming village, is completely unrestored, meaning this is about as authentic an experience as you can get. You'll see some amazing ruins of watchtowers set against the surrounding hillside, making for an unforgettable hike. After a few hours you'll cross into Mutianyu, a largely restored portion of the Great Wall that is very popular but not as touristy as other sections. One of the most photographed sections of the Great Wall, Mutianyu has played host to world leaders and has been the scene of numerous movies.
Day 1: Beijing-Huanhuacheng-Xishuiyu (L+D, 4.5 hrs of hiking)
Your guide will meet you at your hotel around 9:30 am and take you by private car or minivan to the Huanghuacheng section of the Great Wall. Today we will be hiking about 6km/3.5 miles. When you reach the middle of the wall you will be able to witness the lush yellow flowers blooming (during the late spring and early summer) in the surrounding countryside.
On this section of the wall you will pass by many forts, beacon-towers and guard towers, including Yaoziyu Fort, which is the best preserved. Today’s hike, while not very long, is quite unusual; part of the wall is underwater! The name of this body of water is called Jintag lake, and the water is cold and clear, being fed by numerous springs.
After the hike we will drive by private van to a local farmer's house for dinner at Jiankou. You'll be able to spend the night on the Great Wall under the glow of the stars. Our local supplier, who owns a local restaurant and inn, will carry the tents and sleeping pads for you and place them in the watchtower. This will takes about 40 minutes, as he has to reach the Great Wall by climbing a mountain path from his restaurant at the foot of the mountain. He will also cook for you a BBQ dinner, which will include Chinese wheat buns or pancakes, kebabs (beef, pork or chicken), vegetables, photo chips, and fruits.
Day 2 Jiankou-Mutianyu-Beijing (B+L, 4 hrs of hiking)
If you elect to spend the night camping, we’ll be sure to wake up early in order to catch the sunrise over the Great Wall, so be sure to have your cameras ready!
The hiking today will cover about 10km/6miles. The Jiankou section is known for its ruggedness and wild beauty, and you will be in awe of the marvelous views it affords. Be sure to see the watchtower known as “Eagle on the peak”, this tower is extremely high and forms the highest reaching point of the Jiankou section. This is the pinnacle of exotic Great Wall scenery.
From Jiankou you will cross over onto Mutianyu, a section of the wall that has been largely restored. Although it has gotten a face-lift, it avoids the army of tourists that plague Badaling.
Mutianyu offers some breathtaking views of the valley and wall below, and if you look to your right you’ll see a large sign engraved in the side of the mountain encouraging you to “Cherish Chairman Mao”. Mutianyu is often visited by leaders of foreign countries.
You can hike down to the parking lot or take a toboggan (highly recommended, and lots of fun! extra fee.) down to meet our driver. We will then have a lunch at a local restaurant. After that, we'll drive back to Beijing and drop you off at your hotel.
Back home, you'll then need to upload all the fantastic pictures you recorded on your Great Wall trek!
* Personal transfers from and to hotel
* Entry fees to the Great Wall
* Two lunches, one dinner and one breakfast (delivered to your watchtower)
* The privilege of camping on the Great Wall and exclusive access to the camping watch tower
* All necessary camping gears such as tents & bags
* Quality vehicle, professional driver and English-speaking tour guide
* Free membership card
* A credit of $10 when you reserve the next tour with us
1 solo trip: $699
2 people: $439 each
3 people: $419 each
4 people: $389 each
5 people: $369 each
6 people: $339 each
7 people: $319 each
8 or more: $299 each
The red-shade is the area is where this tour covers. We will drive about 2 hours on a highway from Beijing to the Great Wall. Typically we will leave at 9-9:30 am from your hotel.
You may find other 2-day camping tours interesting. Please compare.