There are experiences in life, which are really unique. One of those definitely is visiting the Chinese Wall, which is one of the most fascinating monuments I ever experienced. In this destination guide, I’ll explain what you need to know about visiting!
While the Pyramids of Gizeh and Machu Picchu are highly fascinating, both are located at one spot. The Chinese Wall, also known as Great Wall, on the other hand stretches over thousands of kilometers. There are dozens of spots you can visit, some with better and some with hardly infrastructure. Personally, I’d recommend visiting one of the spots further away from Beijing as those tend to be less crowded. However, there are also huge differences when it comes to the condition of the wall as there are some areas, which you can’t visit or where you can just walk for a few hundred meters.
The decision for visiting the Chinese Wall in Jinshanling, a recently developed area, was mainly made due to a new hotel opening. The Dhawa Jinshanling is located right next to the wall, making it a great place to start your experience. I’ll post an extensive review about the experience soon. Jinshanling as such offers a mini-mall with a few shops as well as a funicular to get up to the wall.
However, I’d rather recommend just walking up as it’s not too hard of a walk. From the entrance it takes about 15 minutes to get to the closest ‘gate’. The walk there is comfortable and not very steep.
The infrastructure in Jinshanling is very good, you can expect nice walkways as well as lots of toilets near the entrances / exits of the wall. All in all, a really great place to visit the Great Wall, particularly as it’s less crowded than the other areas closer to Beijing.
It might actually not matter that much where you visit the Chinese Wall when it comes to the times when visiting is the best idea: early in the morning. You can watch the sunrise and most likely won’t have to deal with as many tourists as later in the day.
When I visited the Great Wall, barely anyone was there in the morning hours and the lighting was particularly nice.
It’s actually a bit tough to loose too many words about the Chinese Wall as such as the experience is very much about just being there and seeing this old, yet majestic structure.
What I think is particularly fascinating about this place is its location. The Great Wall is mainly located in the mountains, making the whole atmosphere somewhat surreal.
You can see kilometers of wall in both directions, stretching around and above mountains.
While the Chinese Wall as such didn’t suceed in the very end, the whole idea of it is just fascinating.
When writing this guide, I was debatting about going into detail and describing the different gates and their importance back in the days, but decided against it.
Why? Because you find this information elsewhere, written by people more knowledable in this topic. However, let me tell you that it’s really interesting how many tours and gates the wall has.
I sort-of expected it to be kilomters long without any spot to go up and down, but that’s totally not the case. There are gates or towers every few hundred meters.
While I’m sure that this is different in other areas, it seems to be quite common looking at different guides. Personally, I also recommend reading the different information signs explaining a bit about the structure.
You’ll learn a lot about the importance of the wall and its structures and get an idea of why someone decided to build this monumental structure.
Honestly, I’ve been incredibly lucky to visit places around the world from New York to Buenos Aires, from Oslo to Cape Town and from Tokyo to Sydney. Nevertheless, there are only a handful places in the whole world I found as fascinating as the Chinese Wall. The structure as such is amazing, but the location in the middle of a mountains range is just one of a kind. If you have the chance, definitely visit the Great Wall!