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Great Wall options for Solo Traveler

Adjuntas, Puerto...
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Great Wall options for Solo Traveler

I will be traveling on my own to Beijing & Shanghai in mid November and I have a question regarding visiting the Great Wall in winter. I’ve heard something about backpacker tours that offer good pricing to get to the Great wall and explore for a couple of hours for a good price. Does anyone know about these groups or have a recommendation? I know I can take a taxi from Beijing but I don’t like the idea of being for long in a cab on my own, I experienced this in the Middle East and even though I didn’t have any problems I didn’t like the experience.

Im trying to avoid big groups that visit Badaling for half an hour and then left, so I was thinking in visiting Simatai. Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

Canada
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1. Re: Great Wall options for Solo Traveler

We just came back from Beijing. First time to Asia.

Taxi cost $450Chinese dollars that's $65US.

A safe and sure way to travel.

I would not fight the mainland Chinese on a train or bus. It is not worth the trouble and a big risk of robbery.

Just charter the taxi and you can hike as long as you want or as fast as you want then have him drive you various places or order food for you. Do not eat at the restaurants at the foot of the Great Wall. Many tourists got sick although they look clean and inviting.

UK
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2. Re: Great Wall options for Solo Traveler

A lot of hostels offer their own trips. I did the Leo Hostel's 'Secret Wall' trip to hike an untouristy bit of the wall , which was excellent. You don't have to stay at the hostel to take their trips.

Melbourne, Australia
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3. Re: Great Wall options for Solo Traveler

You might like to read this about the various parts of the Great Wall you can visit : tripadvisor.com/Travel-g294212-c119304/Beiji…

Backpacking hostels are a great option for tours than are inexpensive & you don't have to stay there. Have a look at Downtown Backpackers - http://www.backpackingchina.com/ They guarantee no to do shopping stops and they are small groups that go to various sections.

Yes you are right to avoid Badaling. Opt for Mutianyu instead as it is not as busy - you will spend about 3 hours at that part of the wall.

Or if you wanted to do a full day hiking then Jinshanling to Simatai takes all day on some wilder unrestored sections. Or just opt to see the Simatai part which will be half a day.

The Beijing Guide: http://www.thebeijingguide.com/ also have various options about tours but you will find the Backpacking hostels charge less.

Kuala Lumpur
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4. Re: Great Wall options for Solo Traveler

We did the Great Wall hike with Downtown Backpackers a week ago from Jinshanling to Simatai. It was very good as has been reviewed by many. You don't have to stay at the hostel to join the hike. While we were given 4 hours to do the 8km, there were plenty of time for us to explore the walls and rest. Our group was made up of different age groups, a couple of solo travelers I think. Everybody were able to meet up more or less around the stated time. They do the trip everyday and it's often full I was told.

california
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5. Re: Great Wall options for Solo Traveler

I too did the Jinshanling to Simatai hike in September, I set my trip up with the hutong hotel I stayed ( CityCourt Hotel) in the Dongcheng district. They had a little van pick us up and along the way stopped at a couple of other hostels. It is a great way to travel, because you meet people from many other places and you can share your experiences, and the group is not big. Jinshanling was a fantastic experience, I am so glad the hotel advised me to see the wall here. Normally I would not advise tipping in China, but considering the distance, driving and delivering you safely to and from the Wall it might be worth considering. Driving in China is something one must experience on in their life and having a safe driver is a god send. Have a wonderful trip.

Miami Beach, Florida
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for Shanghai Region
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6. Re: Great Wall options for Solo Traveler

See this similar thread also for comments: tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294212-i2147-k313…

Kuala Lumpur...
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7. Re: Great Wall options for Solo Traveler

hi TSC18. Could you share more info such as the price, departure time & point ? Also, is this the only section they'll take you to ? I read many recommendations to take the Mutianyu section where you go up on a cable car and down on the toboggan. sounds interesting to me.

pls share. thanks.

Kuala Lumpur...
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8. Re: Great Wall options for Solo Traveler

hi TSC18. Could you share more info such as the price, departure time & point ? Also, is this the only section they'll take you to ? I read many recommendations to take the Mutianyu section where you go up on a cable car and down on the toboggan. sounds interesting to me.

pls share. thanks.

Kuala Lumpur
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9. Re: Great Wall options for Solo Traveler

Hi sc, the cost of the trip is 260Y per person which includes transport and admission tickets (there are 3 tickets, to be shown at 3 entry points, about 95Y in total). The hike covers 30 watch towers. There is cable car ride to the third watch tower (30Y each way) should you decide to save some energy and hike from there. You can go on the flying fox after the last tower, or follow the road and walk back to the meeting point.

The mini van leaves at 7am. It's about 2.5 hour journey on the highway. You are given 4 hours to do the hike, roughly from 10am - 2pm. We got back to the hostel 6.30pm. Jinshaling to Simatai was the only great wall trip they did when I last checked their website. For some reasons the link that I posted earlier seems to have disappeared, not sure if they are upgrading their website.

I have not done Mutianyu but people who have been seem to really enjoyed it too. Jinshaling to Simatai will take you a whole day, it's fine if you have a full day to spare, otherwise you might want to consider Mutianyu.

Melbourne, Australia
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10. Re: Great Wall options for Solo Traveler

Simatai Zip Line

www.youtube.com/watch…