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Mutianyu Great Wall: Everthing to Know Before You Go

Mutianyu Great Wall of China, 70 kilometers (44 miles) away from the urban area of Beijing, is located in the Huairou District. It was built in the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) and nowadays is one of the best-preserved sections of the Great Wall of China. With a long history and splendid culture, it enjoys a great reputation at home and abroad.

Basic Facts about Mutianyu Great Wall:

  • Mutianyu Great Wall is located at the Mutianyu Village, Bohai Town, Huairou District, Beijing. it is about 73 kilometres from downtown Beijing.
  • The total length of Mutianyu is 5.4 kilometers (3.4 miles), which is the longest section of the Great Wall in China at present. But nowadays it only opens 2.25 kilometers (1.4 miles) for visitors.
  • Mutianyu connects Juyongguan in the west and Gubeikou in the east, which was an important strategic spot in ancient times.
  • The construction of Mutianyu Great Wall has its own unique style. For example, on the Great Wall, both sides have crenels and many watch towers on it, which means both sides could fight at the same time and also shows the important strategic positionof Mutianyu in ancient times.
  • Located at the mountain pass, Zhengguantai (No. 4 Watchtower) was a vital strategic facility built in 1404 to store grain and assemble soldiers. It is the most characteristic structure of Mutianyu, consisting of three watchtowers standing side by side.
  • The Big Corner Tower (No. 1 Watchtower) is where three wall branches meet. Located at the vantage point in the east, the tower was of great military significance and provides a wide vision.
  • 20 Watchtower is the highest point of Mutianyu, seated about 1,039 meters above the sea level. Climb up a steep slope to the tower and you will enjoy great vistas of the surroundings.
  • Mutianyuhas Great Wall attracted a great number of tourists both from China and abroad each year, and many national leaders and celebrities around the world have visited this section, including former British Prime Minister John Major, former US President Bill Clinton…

Mutianyu Great Wall Beijing

Why Choose to Visit Mutianyu Great Wall:

  • It is one of the most famous and best-preserved sectionsthroughout the country.
  • 23 watchtowers are densely distributed along the ramparts, some of which feature specialstructures that are rare to see among all the Great Wall sections of China.
  • With 90% forest coverage, Mutianyu boasts fascinating natural scenery in all seasons, especially in spring and autumn. It presents a scene of vitality in spring with plants sending out new shoots and flowers in full bloom. When autumn comes, leaves of trees become yellow and red, adding a wealth of warm tunesto this place.
  • As there are fewer tourists than other sections, you can have a comfortable Mutianyu Great Wall hiking tour there and explore the scenery at your own pace.
  • Mutianyuis a nice destination for a 1-day Beijing tour as it is only about 70 kilometers (44 miles) away from downtown area and is easily accessible by many kinds of public transportation. Passengers enjoying the 144-hour visa-free transit in Beijing may also arrange a Mutianyu Great Wall tour during the layover.
  • It is equipped with a domestic first-class cable car, chairlift and toboggan(slideway) to help visitors to climb the Mutianyu Great Wall.

Mutianyu Great Wall Beijing

Travel Information about Mutianyu Great Wall:

  • Ticket Price
Entrance Fee CNY 45
Shuttle Bus Single Trip: CNY 100
Round Trip: CNY 140
  • Opening Time
Monday – Friday in Peak Season (Mar 16th – Nov 15th) 07:30-18:00
Weekends in Peak Season (Mar 16th – Nov 15th) 07:30-18:30
Low Season (Nov 16th – Mar 15th) 08:00-17:00

Note: Ticketing service stops 1 hour ahead of the closing time.

Mutianyu Great Wall Beijing

When is the Best Time to Visit Mutianyu Great Wall?

The best time to visit Mutianyu Great Wall is during spring (April – May) and autumn (September – November) when the weather is pleasant and the scenery is awe-inspiring.

Despite the weather, scenes in summer (June – August) and winter (December – February) is also worth admiring. In summer, visitors can enjoy an eyeful of verdant beauty while Mutianyu Great Wall in winter looks even majestic against the bare mountain ridges and is particularly spectacular when blanketed by snow.

Tips: Visitors had better avoid the official holidays in China listed below, because many Chinese people choose to travel during these periods to ease the pressure of their work. As a result, many tourist attractions in China are overcrowded and traffic jams are common. Therefore, visiting China in holidays will bring tourists a less pleasant travel experience.

Official Holidays in China

Chinese New Year Around January or February
Winter Vacation January – February
Labor Day Holiday May 1st – May 3rd
Summer Vacation (for students) July – August 31st
Mid-Autumn Festival Around mid-September
National Day Holiday October 1st – October 7th

How to Tour Mutianyu Great Wall

Mutianyu Great Wall Hiking

The hiking trail near the northern gate leads to No. 10 Watchtowers, while the one at the southern gate to the No. 6 and No. 8 watchtowers. Either trail has around 1,100 steps and takes about 40 minutes to reach the wall.

Once you get to the wall, either hike westward to No. 23 Watchtower to enjoy the panoramic view, or take the eastern path to No. 1 Watchtower to see symbolic sights, including Zhengguantai Pass and Big Corner Tower.

Mutianyu Great Wall Cable Car (up and down): Northern Gate 14 Watchtower

Ticket Price CNY 100 for a single trip; CNY 120 for a round trip
Service Hours Monday – Friday in peak season (Mar 16th – Nov 15th): 07:30-18:00
Weekends in peak season (Mar 16th – Nov 15th): 07:30-18:30
In low season (Nov 16th – Mar 15th): 08:00-17:30

Mutainyu Great Wall Chairlift (up and down): Southern Gate 6 Watchtower

Ticket Price CNY 100 for a single trip; CNY 120 for a round trip
Service Hours In peak season (Mar 16th – Nov 15th): 8:00 – 17:00
In low season (Nov 16th – Mar 15th): 8:30 – 16:30

Mutianyu Toboggan/Slideway (only single trip down): No. 6 Watchtower Southern Gate

Ticket Price CNY 60
Service Hours In peak season (Mar 16th – Nov 15th): 8:00 – 17:00
In low season (Nov 16th – Mar 15th): 8:30 – 16:30

Note: The old and children under 3 years old are not recommended to take chairlift or toboggan for safety reasons.

3 Classical Routes for A Half-Day Tour on Mutianyu Great Wall

The following sightseeing routes reveal different charms of Mutianyu. Each requires 4 – 5 hours to finish and involves facilities including cable car, chairlift and toboggan which help to make Mutianyu hiking tour easier and more comfortable.

West Route:

Enter from the northern gate – take the cable car up to No. 14 Watchtower – hike to No. 20 Watchtower – return to No. 14 watchtower – take the cable car downhill

Suitable for: all ages

Features: most tourists’ first choice, offering wonderful vistas from the highest point

East Route:

Enter from the southern gate – take the chairlift up to No. 6 Watchtower – hike to No. 1 Watchtower – return to No. 6 Watchtower – take the toboggan downhill

Not Recommended for: family tour with the old or children under 3 years old

Features: Zhengguantai Pass, Big Corner Tower, experiencing various facilities

Central Route:

Enter from the northern gate – take the cable car to No. 14 Watchtower – hike to No. 6 Watchtower – take the toboggan downhill.

Not Recommended for: family tour with the old or children under 3 years old

Features: Zhengguantai Pass, no backtracking, experiencing various facilities

 

Recommended Mutianyu Great wall day tours:

Mutianyu Great Wall Beijing Autumn

How to Get to the Mutianyu Great Wall from Beijing?

1. Self-Driving:

People can drive along the Jingcheng expressway and get off the expressway from Exit 13, and then the road signs will lead you to Mutianyu. The total length of this route is about 70 kilometers, which could take about 1 hour.

Toll: about CNY 20

2. Tourist bus to Mutianyu Great Wall :

Mubus: Swissotel Beijing Hong Kong Macau Center ⇔Mutianyu

The whole journey is expressway and stops at the attractions for about 5 hours.

Departure Time: morning shift 07:00-08:00 / afternoon shift 11:30-12:00

Return Time: morning shift 14:30 / afternoon shift 18:00

Bus Fare: about CNY 80 per person(Round Trip)

Dongzhimen Tourist BusLine: Dongzhimen Wai Bus Station ⇔ Mutianyu

The whole journey is expressway and would take about 1.5 hours.

Departure Time: 8:30

Return Time: 16:00

Boarding Place for the Return Bus: P1 Parking Lot of the scenic area

Bus Fare: about CNY 30 per person(Single Trip)

Qianmen Tourist Bus Line: Qianmen Tourism Distribution Center ⇔Mutianyu

Bus Route: Qianmen – Dongzhimen – Shaoyaoju Subway station – Mutianyu (the whole journey takes about 2 hours to reach Mutianyu)

Departure time: 8:30 at Qianmen and 9:00 at Shaoyaoju Subway station (extra drive is allowed for large crowds)

Return time: 15:30

Boarding Place for the Return Bus: P1 parking lot of the scenic spot

Bus Fare: about CNY 30 per person(Single Trip)

 

Note: It is suggested visitors travel with a local agency on a group tour or a private tour to Mutianyu Great Wall, as your guide will take care of all the arrangements, including transportation.

 

If you want some recommendations on Great Wall hiking tours, please feel free to contact us! Our expert travel consultants are glad to help you with your itinerary.

 

Popular Great Wall of China Tours:

Mutianyu Great Wall Beijing

What to Eat & Where to Eat

There are fast-food restaurants around Mutianyu Great Wall, like Subway and Burger King, offering simple meals to visitors. If you want to try some local specialties, Xian Lao Man (馅老满) and Yi Song Lou (翼松楼), at the foot of the Great Wall, are recommended for you.

Where to Accommodate

Visitors can find many hostels, hotels and camping sites around the scenic area. Among them, Mutianyu Great Wall Hotel and Cheng Yuan Zhai Inn, both at the foot of the Great Wall, are good choices for you.

 

Besides, Brickyard Retreat at Mutianyu Great Wall, which is 2 kilometers from the scenic area, is also recommended. Rebuilt from an old factory, the hotel displays a unique architectural style combining glazed-tile elements and modern arts, offering a refreshing stay and a novel experience.

Badaling Great Wall vs Mutianyu Great Wall:

Badaling and Mutianyu are the most popular Great Wall sections in China. Both can be toured around within one day and are well equipped with facilities, such as cable car and slideway. However, if you only have time for one section and can’t decide which to visit, the following information may help you out.

 

Badaling is the best-preserved section in China, and is highly recommended for first-timers and those who have great interests in the history of China Great Wall. The tall and thick ramparts as well as huge watchtowers fully showcase the majesty of Great Wall of China. There are also display halls and museums at the foot of the wall, enabling visitors to gain insights into the past of this ancient military facility.

 

Mutianyu is well-known for the beautiful natural scenery and primitive views of Great Wall. Compared with Badaling, it is less crowded and with a gentler slope, making it a nice choice for family tours with the old and children. Besides, architecture admirers are recommended to visit Mutianyu to appreciate the unique buildings and structures.

Other Famous Sections of Great Wall of China

 

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