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Great Wall in Beijing

Our Tour Group at Badaling Great Wall
Our Tour Group at Badaling
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Beijing is not only the political center of China, but also the most strategic city in the north. Many dynasties in Chinese history actively built Great Wall here. In total, it measures about 373 miles (600 kilometers). The sections of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) amount to about 342 miles (550 kilometers), and the sections of other dynasties add up to about 25 miles (40 kilometers). They are distributed in Pinggu District, Miyun County, Huairou District, Yanqing County, Changping District, and Mentougou District. Some sections are well-preserved, while others are broken and need to be reinforced and restored in time. The most popular sections are listed below.

  Most Visited Sections
These sections are well-preserved and equipped with sound tourism facilities, even suitable for kids and seniors. Among them, Badaling is the best-preserved, and famous for its deep-rooted culture, magnificent sights and complete military facilities. You may find many of its pictures in magazines and guide books and printed on stamps. However, during peak travel time like National Day Holiday, Mutianyu may be a better destination as Badaling is always flocked with visitors. Juyongguan is one of three most famous passes along Great wall. There, one can also visit some ancient buildings like towers and temples.

 Popular Sections with Fewer Tourists

These sections haven also been developed into scenic spots and are popular among visitors, but less crowded and one can visit at a leisurely pace. Jinshanling and Simatai have been equipped with cableways. But to visit Simatai, you’d better make a reservation on its official website. Shuiguan, literally meaning water gate, is built over a river to defend against enemies coming from waterways. Although the river has disappeared, one can still learn the magnificence of this special defensive construction. In addition to admire the Great Wall, Xiangshuihu is a site to learn some traditional Chinese health preserving knowledge.

Simatai Great Wall, Beijing
Jinshanling Great Wall, Beijing

 Wild Sections

Wild Great Wall refers to those that have not been reconstructed and thus retain their original appearances. Although they are broken and dilapidated, the vicissitudes of history are fully revealed. They are hot destinations among hiking lovers and adventurous travelers. Among them, Jiankou is the most dangerous but a great site for photography. Huanghuacheng, partially submerged underwater due to the construction of a reservoir, is the only section by water in Beijing. However, it is not officially allowed to hike the wild sections for safety issues and protection work. So when going there, please be careful and do not do any harm to the precious historical relics.

Different sections have different features and show different beauty. Come and explore your favorite one!

 Beijing Great Wall Map

Please hover over the names on the following map to learn more about the famous sections:

 Damages Brought about by Nature and Human Activities
Compared with the sections in other regions, the Great Wall in Beijing is relatively well-preserved. However, its situation is not that good due to nature and human activities. Some bricks and stones are loose and fall down easily, and some even become piles of debris. The natural factors like erosions, rain, winds, and lightning stroke cause damages to the heritage day by day. The shrubs growing on the Great Wall and in the watchtowers cause them to crack and collapse. What's more, the growing number of tourists crowd into the wild sections, which speeds up their disappearance. Though it is favored by film producers, the shooting work brings no good. On the contrary, they leave props here and there. Some people like to graffiti on the Great Wall, and some even shove bricks and sell them for personal benefits.

 A Call for Urgent Protection
To better protect this human treasure, government, tourists, and local residents should all work together. More laws and regulations should be carried out; tourists should be more careful and bind themselves during the visit; local residents should also stop making benefits from it and pay more attention to its protection in daily life.