September presents an ideal setting for experiencing the gentle caress of Beijing's refreshing breezes while embarking on a profound journey through the annals of Chinese history, enabling visitors to delve into the captivating tapestry of the nation's rich cultural heritage.
The most famous site
If you don’t reach the Great Wall, you’re not a man! Says the Chinese saying, 不到长城非好男子 in Mandarin.
So, most Chinese can say to have been at least once to the world-famous Unesco site, however, foreigners visiting the Great Wall, following the restrictions of Covid-19 aren't growing as much as expected.
Said so, visiting the Great Wall is a lifetime experience and not as close as you might expect from the capital. To reach the closest part of the Great Wall, Mutianyu takes roughly 1 hour by car or minivan. It's easy to find companies organizing the transportation while you might want to reach the further part of the wall, the one not affected by a lot of tourists.
Alternatively, you can visit Jiankou or Simatai, two other sides of the Great Wall with fewer crowds where the enchanting atmosphere of the Chinese UNESCO site would give you a fantastic feeling.
What to do?
Once you reach the towers of the Great Wall a common practice is to stand on the highest point and take a photo of the surrounding valley. While Simatai is a site that can be reached even by basic trekkers the same cannot be said for Jiankou which requires strong hikers to reach the area.
Both areas have the advantage of having very few tourists however there are further challenges as the area is wild for most of the tourists and can be a problem for non-fit trekkers. You can still spend some time collecting postcards, listening to local classic harp players, learning how to play chess with locals, and so on.
Why to visit it?
Being one of the most important sites in the world, the Great Wall has been a place to visit for centuries, built in the 7th century BC most of its original part nowadays is gone, however, the remaining part still standing has been built around 600 years ago. Extended for thousands of km, from the mountainous region of Inner Mongolia to the beach, the Great Wall is simply a breathtaking experience to be taken.
Can you see the Great Wall from the moon?
Long discussions have gone around this possibility, especially since China opened up to tourism in the late 80s. The answer is, most of the days no, it's not possible to see with the naked eye the Great Wall from the moon, however in particular circumstances when all elements are required, perfect weather, no smoke, low level of pollution, and a short distance from Earth, then it's possible.
Written by Joshua Rasia, Travel and Sport Correspondent at YNBC