Pinggu Overnight | Relaxing in the hotel courtyard
Relaxing in the courtyard of the countryside hotel.

Pinggu District overnighter

Head out to Pinggu District for two days of hikes and activities, including a hike into East Beijing’s ‘Grand Canyon’ and dragon-boating on Jinhai Lake. Overnight in a comfortable village hotel.

Level 3+
A big hike on Day One; shorter hike (optional) and dragon-boating on Day Two (Can I do it?)

This hike is not currently scheduled

Contact us for schedule updates or set up a private hike

Pinggu District is a mainly rural and agricultural area on the east side of Beijing municipality.

Geographically, it’s a flat plain with mountains that wrap around the north, east, and west sides. Up in those mountains are small villages, deep canyons, and fragments of Great Wall. On the east side of the plain, there’s a large lake.

On this trip we’ll hike through the mountains, small villages, and canyons, explore short sections of the Great Wall, and paddle dragon boats on that large lake.

This trip is timed for the weekend before the Dragon Boat Festival, the perfect time to learn all about dragon boating.

Trip overview
Day One main activities ‘Prove Your Loyalty’ hike (BYO lunch for a picnic in the mountains) • Explore East Beijing’s ‘Grand Canyon’ • Countryside hotel overnight, including a big dinner and games of mah-jong.
Day Two main activities Breakfast at the hotel • Short hike or personal free time • Lunch at the hotel • Dragon Boat activity on Jinhai Lake.

Trip highlights

Prove Your Loyalty hike

On a track in the hills of Pinggu District
On a track in the hills of Pinggu District. (Click for larger image)

The Prove Your Loyalty hike is a Pinggu District ramble that follows wooded trails, passes abandoned or lightly-inhabited villages, and crosses short rundown stretches of Great Wall. We begin with a walk into a scenic area where you can see ancient volcanic features (if you keep your eyes peeled), and then head up a hill trail to find a stony stretch of Great Wall that runs through a forest. We then follow firebreak roads into the East Beijing ‘Grand Canyon’ scenic area. (4–5 hour hike.)

East Beijing’s ‘Grand Canyon’

Hiking into the ‘Grand Canyon’
Hiking into the ‘Grand Canyon’. (Click for larger image)

The ‘Grand Canyon’ is a scenic area that covers tall mountains and deep canyons. Narrow paved paths lead up into deep valleys shaded by tall cliffs, with bridges and plank paths crossing streams and ravines. We’ll hike into the canyon and through increasingly narrow ravines to find a small waterfall. (est. 2 hours of walking.)

Yellow Pines Peak hike

A view from the Great Wall above the reservoir
A view from the Great Wall above the reservoir near the hotel. (Click for larger image)

Wake up early for the Yellow Pines Peak hike, a short but steep walk about the hills behind the hotel. We start by following stairs up to a lookout and then make a rather steep climb up a big hill to get on to the trail that leads over to the reservoir overlook on the Great Wall. (est. 2–3 hours.) Doing the whole hike is optional—you can choose to do just the stairs to the lookout, or even go back to bed after breakfast.

Jinhai Lake Dragon Boats

The jetty at Jinhai Lake
The jetty at Jinhai Lake. (Click for larger image)

We’ll drive over to a sports and teambuilding base on the far shores of Jinhai Lake for a dragon boat session on the calm* and clear water of the lake. Equipment and instructions included in the trip cost. (1–2 hours.)

* If the wind is deemed too strong for dragon boats we'll do rafting instead.

COVID-19 and participation precautions

The current precautions are minimal. Please read in full here: Operating hikes under COVID-19 precautions

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Photos and trip reports: Pinggu District overnighter

  1. Pinggu District overnighter, 2020/05/03

    Pinggu District overnighter, 2020/05/03

    During the May holiday we spent two days in Pinggu District, overnighting at a countryside hotel—see 13 photos from the trip, including the hikes, a mah-jong session, and dragon-boating!

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