Great Wall Beijing China July 2017

Great Wall Beijing China July 2017

The Great Wall of China is a series of fortifications made of stone, brick, rammed earth, wood, and other materials, generally built along an east-to-west line across the historical northern borders of China to protect the Chinese states and empires against the raids and invasions of the various nomadic groups of the Eurasian Steppe. Several walls were being built as early as the 7th century BCE; these, later joined together and made bigger and stronger, are now collectively referred to as the Great Wall. Especially famous is the wall built 220–206 BCE by Qin Shi Huang, the first Emperor of China. Little of that wall remains. Since then, the Great Wall has been rebuilt, maintained, and enhanced; the majority of the existing wall is from the Ming Dynasty (1368–1644).  
 
The peak busy season in China is generally from May to August. That doesn’t mean a visit during these periods will be frantic though. Ultimately where you stay and hike is more important than when you go. We stayed in the Commune by the Great Wall (长城脚下的公社) which is a private collection of contemporary architecture designed by 12 Asian architects. It was exhibited at the 2002 la Biennale di Venezia and bestowed a special prize. It comprised of forty villas with 175 suites and eleven Presidential Suites, and three restaurants, Kid’s Club as well as an outdoor pool and tennis court. My friends and I rented the entire Bamboo Wall House with a total of six bedrooms . I recommend going with enough people to rent an entire house; otherwise you might get stuck in a house with people you do not know. The most amazing part is the private path accesses to an untouched portion of the Great Wall of China. There has been little restoration done to the wall, which adds to the appeal. It is a steep 15-minute hike to get to the ancient ramparts. Once on the wall, you can walk a half-hour along it before a metal gate bars further exploration. Being able to see both the Great Wall and creative modern architecture in a short Beijing trip is wonderful.

The Great Wall of China is a series of fortifications made of stone, brick, rammed earth, wood, and other materials, generally built along an east-to-west line across the historical northern borders of China to protect the Chinese states and empires against the raids and invasions of the various nomadic groups of the Eurasian Steppe. Several walls were being built as early as the 7th century BCE; these, later joined together and made bigger and stronger, are now collectively referred to as the Great Wall. Especially famous is the wall built 220–206 BCE by Qin Shi Huang, the first Emperor of China. Little of that wall remains. Since then, the Great Wall has been rebuilt, maintained, and enhanced; the majority of the existing wall is from the Ming Dynasty (1368–1644).  
 
The peak busy season in China is generally from May to August. That doesn’t mean a visit during these periods will be frantic though. Ultimately where you stay and hike is more important than when you go. We stayed in the Commune by the Great Wall (长城脚下的公社) which is a private collection of contemporary architecture designed by 12 Asian architects. It was exhibited at the 2002 la Biennale di Venezia and bestowed a special prize. It comprised of forty villas with 175 suites and eleven Presidential Suites, and three restaurants, Kid’s Club as well as an outdoor pool and tennis court. My friends and I rented the entire Bamboo Wall House with a total of six bedrooms . I recommend going with enough people to rent an entire house; otherwise you might get stuck in a house with people you do not know. The most amazing part is the private path accesses to an untouched portion of the Great Wall of China. There has been little restoration done to the wall, which adds to the appeal. It is a steep 15-minute hike to get to the ancient ramparts. Once on the wall, you can walk a half-hour along it before a metal gate bars further exploration. Being able to see both the Great Wall and creative modern architecture in a short Beijing trip is wonderful.