Depart your hotel in central Beijing, and travel north from the city by private, air-conditioned vehicle with your guide. Pass interesting towns, villages, and countryside, and hear all about the Huanghuacheng Great Wall as you travel.
This largely unrestored, steeply running section was built as part of China’s inner Great Wall during the Ming dynasty (1368-1644), and is one of the most beautiful yet least crowded sections near Beijing — about 45 miles (70 kilometres) from the city.
Huanghuacheng is also the only lakeside section of the wall, running over vertiginous mountainous terrain before tracing the shores of Haoming Lake. Parts of the structure here are even submerged in the lake and nearby Xishuiyu Reservoir. The natural beauty of the surroundings – green mountains, flower fields, and lush woodlands — and the largely unrestored ramparts give the wall a wild, untamed feel loved by hikers.
On arrival at Huanghuacheng, swap your vehicle for a bicycle, and don the provided cycle helmet. Then, after safety instructions, enjoy a guided tour, following parts of the back roads that lead to the wall. Pedal along quiet lanes past traditional farms, streams, farmland, woods, and orchards, and stop every now and then to hear more about the area.
After about an hour, end your ride and enjoy a tasty Chinese lunch at a local restaurant before continuing to one of the most scenic stretches of the wall.
Here, enjoy a 2- to 3-hour guided hike along the ramparts, walking at a pace that suits you. Admire the magnificent views from your elevated position, soaking in the forested peaks, lake, and wall as it snakes away over the high ridges.
Afterward, return to your vehicle and travel back to Beijing, where your trip ends with a hotel drop-off.