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Great Wall: Walled Village to the Little West Lake

In Brief: Begin with a stroll through chestnut orchards on the way to the Great Wall, then follow the wall up along a big ridge, finishing up with stunning views of the Little West Lake.

Towers on the ridgeline on the wild Great Wall on the way to the Little West Lake

The hike follows this line of ‘wild’

Key information

  • approx. 3–4 hours start to finish over 5.5km.

Regular hikers: our trails in this area overlap quite a bit, and if you’ve done any of our Zhuangdaokou or Huanghuacheng hikes you may already have walked a lot of this trail.

On this hike we’ll hike a pretty-but-steep stretch of the Huanghuacheng ‘Yellow Flower’ Great Wall, following it over a big hill towards the Little West Lake, a reservoir in the hills of Huairou District.

To begin we’ll take a quick look at the thick walls of what was once a Ming Dynasty-era barracks, we’ll take an easy stroll through chestnut orchards on the way to a stretch of the nearby Huanghuacheng Great Wall.

It’s a pleasant twenty-minute walk through the orchards, and easy – a good thing, because we’ll have some steep climbs on the wall to warm up for.

We’ll stop for a rest as we reach the Great Wall, and will have time to climb a few towers of the restored section here. The restored section leads over to the other reservoir in the area, and it’s quite steep!

It’s not too tough to climb up to the first tower on the restored side, though, and by doing that you’ll get great views of the line of unrestored ‘wild’ Great Wall that we’ll be following to finish the hike.

After a steep climb on the last little bit of restored Great Wall we’ll be up onto the wild wall and climbing up to the highest tower in the area.

The trail is slippery in a few places, and we make a detour around a tricky section. We’ll take it slow as you like heading up, and we’ll take another break at the highest tower – an excellent place to take a few photos of the surrounding mountains.

We’ll follow the wall towards the Little West Lake, and on a clear day the views here are amazing, with a line of wall plunging down toward the deep water of the reservoir.

Before the wall gets too steep we’ll branch off on to a hill trail that leads us down to the bottom of the hill, where our hike will finish.

What to bring on this hike

Reasons you might not enjoy this hike

  • While we’re on the wall, the climbing is steep.
  • It’s quite a short hike, and if you’ve done the Zhuangdaokou to the Walled Village hike or Walled Village to Huanghuachenge hike you’ve done most of this one already.

There are risks involved in hiking. Please read our Risk Acknowledgment and Waiver and inform yourself before participating.

Level3

Level of difficulty

Level 3 hikes are the type we do most often. Level 3 hikes will take around 3 hours, and can be either reasonably easy, or challenging, depending on how often you exercise.

Is the level of difficulty suitable for me?

Hike statistics

  • Distance: 5.5km
  • Time to complete: 3–4 hours
  • Total ascent: 364m
  • Total descent: 371m
  • Start height: 314m
  • Peak: 540m
  • Finish height: 307m
  • Location: Huairou
  • Drive time: 2 hours each way

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, use our contact form to let us know and we'll send you a quick email when the schedule is online.

Hike in Beijing calendar

See the Hike in Beijing schedule in our calendar


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All upcoming hikes in Beijing

Departure date: Wednesday, November 21
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Stone Valley Great Wall Loop

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Departure date: Thursday, November 22
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Longquanyu Great Wall to the Little West Lake

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Departure date: Saturday, November 24
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Immortal Valley Loop

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Departure date: Saturday, November 24
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Gubeikou Great Wall Loop

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Departure date: Sunday, November 25
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Jiankou to Mutianyu Great Wall

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Departure date: Sunday, November 25
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Intelligence Valley and Yanqi Lake

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Departure date: Wednesday, November 28
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Gubeikou to Jinshanling Great Wall East

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

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Departure date: Saturday, December 1
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Shuiquan Canyon

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Departure date: Saturday, December 1
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Longquanyu Great Wall to the Little West Lake

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Departure date: Sunday, December 2
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Stone Valley Great Wall Loop

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Departure date: Wednesday, December 5
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Great Wall Spur

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Departure date: Saturday, December 8
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High Rise to Longquanyu

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Departure date: Saturday, December 8
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Gubeikou Great Wall Loop

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Departure date: Sunday, December 9
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Jiankou to Mutianyu Great Wall

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Departure date: Sunday, December 9
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Silver Pagoda Loop

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Departure date: Wednesday, December 12
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Walled Village to Huanghuacheng Great Wall

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Departure date: Saturday, December 15
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Gubeikou to Jinshanling Great Wall East

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Departure date: Saturday, December 15
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Triangle Hike

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Departure date: Sunday, December 16
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Stone Valley Great Wall Loop

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Departure date: Wednesday, December 19
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Longquanyu Great Wall to the Little West Lake

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Departure date: Saturday, December 22
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The High Tower Loop hike

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Departure date: Saturday, December 22
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Walled Village to Huanghuacheng Great Wall

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Departure date: Sunday, December 23
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‘Almost Christmas’ on the Great Wall: Hemp Village to Gubeikou

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

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Departure date: Saturday, December 29
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Gubeikou to Jinshanling Great Wall East

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Departure date: Sunday, December 30
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Great Wall Spur

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Departure date: Monday, December 31
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Immortal Valley Loop

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Departure date: Monday, December 31
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Sunset over the Huanghuacheng Great Wall

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Departure date: Tuesday, January 1
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Gubeikou Great Wall Loop

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Explore China

See more of China on a multi-day trip—travel to famous scenic areas, or choose to visit somewhere obscure and less well-known.

Upcoming trips

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Trip dates: December 12–16, 2018

Lijiang and Shangri-La, Yunnan Province

In Brief: See the highlights of Lijiang and Shangri-La: cobbled streets and watercourses of ancient towns, Naxi and Tibetan culture, plus amazing views of snow-capped mountains. Cultural focus, nothing too strenuous.

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Lanzhou Danxia Landform
Trip dates: December 29–January 1

Lanzhou Danxia Landform, Yellow River Stone Forest, and Bingling Temple, Gansu Province (4 days)

In Brief: Head out to Gansu Province for a four-day trip that features hikes and walks around the Lanzhou Danxia Landform, the Yellow River Stone Forest, and Bingling Temple.

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