After pickup from your central Beijing hotel, set off by private, air-conditioned car or minivan for the Mutianyu section of China’s UNESCO-listed Great Wall.
During your roughly 90-minute journey, absorb the views over Beijing’s suburbs and surrounding countryside, and hear about the Mutianyu wall, one of the most scenic and least crowded sections.
Dating back to the Ming Dynasty (1368 and 1644), this beautifully restored stretch weaves across high hills, woodlands, and rich pastures whose colors change with the seasons. It’s particularly noted for its 23 densely spaced watchtowers stretched along a 1.8-mile (3-kilometer) segment, the highest of which is the 23rd.
On arrival, opt for the round-trip cable car (own expense) up to and back from the wall and walk along the top of the battlements — sometimes dusted in snow in winter. Stride along the ramparts and admire the impressive watchtowers and mountain views; the latter even more beautiful if covered in snow.
When it’s time, descend and relax over a Chinese lunch at a local restaurant. Then, hop back inside your vehicle and travel to the Huaibei International Ski Resort, set in the hills below Mutianyu.
Head into the resort and visit the rental stations to hire your ski wear and locker, and pay a deposit for your skis and ski wear (all at own expense). Snow ski rental is included in the price.
Then, enjoy 3-hour access to the slopes: an extensive area of ski trails, including advanced, intermediate, and beginner runs, and a cable car up to 3,937 feet (1,200 meters). Spend your time as you please: tackling the slopes independently and if you wish, taking breaks at the cafes in view of the mountains and Great Wall itself.
When it’s time, return to Beijing, where your trip ends with a hotel drop-off.