The Great Wall of China is located in northern China and was built originally to protect the northern borders of the Chinese Empire against intrusions by various nomadic groups. Most of the wall was built in parts since the 5th century BC. One of the most famous parts is the wall built by the First Emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang between 220-206 BC. However, the majority of what remains was built during the Ming dynasty.
We generally refer to the Great Wall in three different sections: Mutianyu, Badaling and Simatai.
Level of Climbing Difficulty : Low
Tourist level: Medium
Mutianyu is located some 90km north of Beijing, and like Badaling, is a recently renovated section that’s very popular. Mutianyu lies in rugged territory and reaching the Wall from the main gate involves a strenuous climb up a steep stairway, but fortunately there’s a chairlift. Once on top, the views of the Wall undulating down wooded canyons and up mountain ridges are breathtaking.
Admission Fee: CNY 40
Opening Hours: 8:00-16:00
Cable Car: CNY 35 (Single trip), CNY 50 (Round Trip)
Slideway: CNY 55
Level of Climbing Difficulty: Medium
Tourist level: Very, very crowded
Only 70km away by superhighway, Badaling is the closest section of the Great Wall to Beijing and can be visited in half a day. Moreover, its proximity to the Ming Tombs means both sites can be seen in a single outing. Badaling was completely restored after 1957. It has a chairlift and fast food restaurants and can be very crowded with hawkers and tourists, but all that fades away once you leave the parking area and begin to walk along the Wall.
Admission Fee:CNY 45 (Apr. 1 to Oct. 31); CNY 40 (Nov. 1 to Mar. 31)
Opening Hours: 06:30-19:00 (Summer) 07:00-18:00 (Winter)
Level of Climbing Difficulty: High
Tourist Level: Low
The Simatai section is a dramatic testimony to Ming engineering skills with one section as steep as 85 degrees. Only partially restored, Simatai allows athletic visitors who climb past the first watchtowers to see the Wall in its wild, crumbling state. Less intrepid visitors can take a gondola. Simatai is 110km northwest of Beijing.
Admission Fee: CNY 40
Cable Car: CNY 20 (Single Trip), CNY 30 (Round Trip)
Remember this before you go to the Great Wall:
It means: If you fail to reach the Great Wall, you are not a true man (or a true Han-Chinese).
So this is why you’ll find toddlers climbing the Great Wall with their parents!!!
Trip information from Chinaholiday.com