Spend the day out in Cuandixia, a Ming Dynasty-era village in the mountains west of Beijing – first a walk in the hills near the village, then a good look about the old courtyards, temples, and narrow lanes of the village itself. Includes a meal at a restaurant in the village.
Mostly easy, with some stairs to climb in places. 3–4 hours of easy walking (Can I do it?)
The name of this village – ‘Cuandixia’ – translates roughly as ‘Below the cooking-stove’, which could be interpreted as meaning a good safe spot that’s hard to find. You’ll also find it on maps as ‘Chuandixia,’ as the character for Chuan (川) is much less complicated than that of Cuan (爨).
We’ll start our day out with a walk up to a lookout point in the hills opposite the village, making a loop that will bring us back to the village for a big lunch.
After lunch we’ll take a tour of the alleys, lanes, paved stairs, temples, and some of the courtyard houses that are open to visitors. We’ll finish with some free time for you to look about the village and/or buy ice cream and hang out. It will be quite a long day, but well worth it!
Kids club: relaxed outings for kids to enjoy some family time in nature. Best for ages 5–12. Younger children would need a carry on the hills hike part of this visit.
Itinerary for the hike
Driving to the hike, stopping for a bathroom break
Arrive at the village, bathrooms available if needed
Start the walk in the hills opposite the village (concrete paths, stairs, dirt tracks
Ready for lunch at the restaurant
Getting ready for the tour of the main parts of the village
Free time in the village
Driving back, stopping for a bathroom break
Arrive at Lido, then on to Liangmaqiao
Things to do
Look for the slogans: Some of the walls of the old courtyard houses still have faint traces of 60s-era slogans.
Count the strokes in the ‘cuan’ character: Are there really 56 strokes in this character?
Find the secrets in the biggest courtyard: A cat door? An escape tunnel?
Please contact us if you'd like more details about the plan.
Safety and supervision: we choose hikes that are not dangerous, and we’ll warn you about any parts of the hike that require extra attention. You’re responsible for watching your children. We’ll let you know where’s good to play.
Vehicle: all participants must wear seatbelts while in the vehicle. Ask us about bringing your car seat, as certain seats might not fit.
Weather: if the weather doesn’t look like fun, we’ll cancel or postpone the hike.
Food: bring water and plenty of snacks. We’ll have a restaurant lunch in the village. You can buy more drinks, snacks, and ice creams at the little shops in the village.
COVID-19 and participation precautions
The brief version:
Please DO NOT participate if you are sick or showing symptoms of fever and/or have an elevated temperature, or have been in close contact with someone who was/is.