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The view from Vulture Rock Ridge
Departure date: Saturday, November 22

Vulture Rock Ridge loop hike

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Get some good exercise with great views on this loop hike in the mountains west of Beijing, following hill trails up to a broad plateau before walking along high-up Vulture Rock Ridge. From the highest point on the hike we follow part of a pilgrims’ path through forest, eventually arriving back where we began.

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Departure date: Saturday, November 22

Gubeikou Great Wall Loop

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On this hike we’ll head out to a beautiful section of the Great Wall that is further outside the city than the crowded main tourist sites, and much quieter. You’ll have a chance to hike along an unrestored section of the Great Wall that grants magnificent views of the Great Wall stretching beyond the horizon in the east and west. As we follow the wall, we’ll pass through restored and unrestored sections, as well as taking a nice detour through pines on a hillside trail.

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Departure date: Sunday, November 23

The High Tower

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Enjoy 4–5 hours of tough hiking and a visit to one of Beijing’s highest Great Wall towers on this challenging hike in Yanqing District. Starting from a small Ming Dynasty-era village, we’ll follow a paved path up to the Beijing-Hebei border before starting the ascent to a tower situated 1,440m above sea level, crossing a wide plateau on the way. After a lunch break at the tower, we’ll head downhill, passing fragments of Great Wall on the way to the valley trail that will take us to the end.

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Departure date: Sunday, November 23

Longquanyu Great Wall to the Little West Lake

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Take a stroll through valleys and past villages on the way to a seldom-visited stretch of Great Wall nestled in the hills north of the Ming Tombs. We’ll follow the wall up and along a ridge, detouring through orchards to get around a cliff face before rejoining the wall and following it on to make a circuit of the Little West Lake. When we’re done walking we’ll head to a nearby restaurant for a late lunch of Chinese food.

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Departure date: Wednesday, November 26

Hemp Village to Gubeikou Great Wall

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To begin the hike, we’ll walk in to Hemp Village, a tiny settlement hidden at the end of a long valley. From Hemp Village, we’ll climb into the hills, first following a trail through fields with views of the Great Wall to the side and front, and then getting on to the Great Wall at Gubeikou to walk a 6km stretch of pretty, unrestored wall.

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Departure date: Thursday, November 27

Jiankou ‘Big West’ Great Wall

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This hike is a shortened version of our Nine-Eyes Tower trail, made easier by skipping the tough climb up to the top. We’ll follow hill trails through leafy valleys to get to Jiankou’s ‘Big West Wall’, and then walk south along the wall towards the Chinese Knot. There are some sections that are very steep and slippery.

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Departure date: Saturday, November 29

Chinese Knot Great Wall

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This tough Great Wall hike involves a lot of climbing and scrambling, and you’ll need strong legs and a good head for heights to make it to the end. Starting on the southern side of the mountains to the north of Beijing, we follow the Great Wall up and over two ridges, peaking just after the ‘Chinese Knot’ at 987m above sea level. 4–5 hours of hiking over 10km, with hiking boots and above-average level of fitness required. Note: if you’re not comfortable with making a short-but-steep climb on somewhat tricky terrain, you will probably not find this hike an enjoyable experience.

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Departure date: Saturday, November 29

Walled Village to Huanghuacheng Great Wall

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Starting at the Walled Village, we’ll follow a gentle path up terraces and orchards before coming to the Great Wall. We’ll climb a very steep section that is still quite difficult, although it has been restored. After coming over the top of a peak, we’ll stay on the wall as it plunges down the other side to Huanghuacheng, where we’ll get a meal of delicious country-style Chinese food. After lunch, we’ll have the option to walk up to the wall on the other side of the reservoir—we think it’s well worth it!

NOTE: This is a short hike, but the stretch of wall we follow is fairly steep, both ascending and descending. We’ll take it nice and slow, and enjoy the views. If it’s not enough exercise for you, there’s another stretch to climb on after lunch! 

Regular hikers: This is the easiest version of this trail.

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Departure date: Sunday, November 30

Bricks In The Wall hike

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We’ll follow roads and hill trails in and around tiny villages northwest of Beijing, making easy climbs on hill trails and a really steep and tough climb on a rather rundown stretch of Great Wall, with fine views the whole way.

Most of this hike is easy, but we’ve rated it as a Level 4 because the section of the Great Wall we’ll climb is really steep and tricky.

Note: this hike will not be much fun if you are not good with heights or not confident in your balancing ability.

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Departure date: Sunday, November 30

Jiankou to Mutianyu Great Wall

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This is a tough and challenging hike, suitable for fit hikers with a good head for heights. We’ll start off at Jiankou, following a zigzag hillside trail that rises quickly to a Great Wall tower that is almost 1,000 metres above sea level. From the tower we can see the Jiankou basin, as well as many other stretches of Great Wall in the area. From there we’ll head southeast, following the wall towards Mutianyu. The hike crosses unrestored and restored sections of wall, which makes it a good way to see the Great Wall as it is now, and how it might have looked when first built.

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Departure date: Wednesday, December 3

Gubeikou Great Wall Loop

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On this hike we’ll head out to a beautiful section of the Great Wall that is further outside the city than the crowded main tourist sites, and much quieter. You’ll have a chance to hike along an unrestored section of the Great Wall that grants magnificent views of the Great Wall stretching beyond the horizon in the east and west. As we follow the wall, we’ll pass through restored and unrestored sections, as well as taking a nice detour through pines on a hillside trail.

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Departure date: Saturday, December 6

Switchback Great Wall

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Travel right on past touristy Badaling on the way out to a difficult Great Wall hike in the mountains overlooking the Guanting Reservoir in Yanqing. The climbing is steep and tough and we’ll take 4–5 hours to complete the 8.5km walk. For much of the hike we’ll be quite high up, peaking at 1,200m near the midpoint where the wall curves in a sharp switchback.

We have a shorter version of this hike – on this trip we’ll do the tougher, longer route, and we’re going to do it backwards!

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Departure date: Saturday, December 6

Jiankou ‘Big West’ Great Wall

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This hike is a shortened version of our Nine-Eyes Tower trail, made easier by skipping the tough climb up to the top. We’ll follow hill trails through leafy valleys to get to Jiankou’s ‘Big West Wall’, and then walk south along the wall towards the Chinese Knot. This hike will still be fairly tough if you’re not used to hiking, and there are some sections that are very steep and slippery.

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Departure date: Sunday, December 7

Hemp Village to Jinshanling Great Wall East

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On this hike we’ll walk to and through Hemp Village, an isolated settlement in the hills on the border of Beijing and Hebei Province on the way up to the stretch of wall that lies between Gubeikou and Jinshanling. We’ll follow a narrow trail alongside the wall before passing through an archway to get on to the wall at Jinshanling, a partially-restored stretch with many intact and closely-spaced towers. After hiking along all the wall at Jinshanling, we’ll head to a local restaurant for a meal of Chinese food before the drive back to the city.

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A view from a high point in Changping District
Departure date: Sunday, December 7

Longevity Village to the Sacred Way

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On this version of our Longevity Village to the Ming Tombs hike we will avoid a recently re-opened mine and quarry site by looping to the west instead of going around the east side. We will still get some good hill walking done, climbing up and over a ridge, descending into a deep valley, and then making another climb to a high lookout on the way to the end. After the hike, we’ll get lunch at a local restaurant before finishing up with a stroll up the Sacred Way, the official entrance to the tombs in times gone by.

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Hikes in Beijing

We publish our hike schedule month by month, with updates around the 10th of each month. If you're interested in hikes and trips during a month that's not yet listed, email us at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) and we'll let you know when the schedule is online.


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All upcoming hikes in Beijing

Departure date: Saturday, November 22
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Vulture Rock Ridge loop hike

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Departure date: Saturday, November 22
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Gubeikou Great Wall Loop

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Departure date: Sunday, November 23
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The High Tower

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Departure date: Sunday, November 23
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Longquanyu Great Wall to the Little West Lake

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Departure date: Wednesday, November 26
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Hemp Village to Gubeikou Great Wall

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Departure date: Thursday, November 27
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Jiankou ‘Big West’ Great Wall

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Departure date: Saturday, November 29
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Chinese Knot Great Wall

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Departure date: Saturday, November 29
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Walled Village to Huanghuacheng Great Wall

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Departure date: Sunday, November 30
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Bricks In The Wall hike

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Departure date: Sunday, November 30
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Jiankou to Mutianyu Great Wall

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Departure date: Wednesday, December 3
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Gubeikou Great Wall Loop

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Departure date: Saturday, December 6
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Switchback Great Wall

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Departure date: Saturday, December 6
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Jiankou ‘Big West’ Great Wall

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Departure date: Sunday, December 7
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Hemp Village to Jinshanling Great Wall East

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Departure date: Sunday, December 7
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Longevity Village to the Sacred Way

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Departure date: Wednesday, December 10
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Great Wall Spur

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Departure date: Saturday, December 13
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Fragrant Village to Huanghuacheng

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Departure date: Sunday, December 14
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Quarrymen’s Trail

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Departure date: Sunday, December 14
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Gubeikou Great Wall Loop

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Departure date: Wednesday, December 17
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Middle Route of Switchback Great Wall

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Departure date: Saturday, December 20
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Great Wall: Walled Village to the Little West Lake

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Departure date: Sunday, December 21
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Hemp Village to Gubeikou Great Wall

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Departure date: Thursday, December 25
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Jiankou to Mutianyu Great Wall Christmas hike

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Departure date: Saturday, December 27
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Gubeikou to Jinshanling Great Wall Christmas Hike

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Departure date: Sunday, December 28
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Rolling Hills and Empty Lanes

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Departure date: Sunday, December 28
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Great Wall Spur

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