I'm going to Beijing soon and was just wondering what people think is the best way of seeing th Great Wall.
I beleive that Simatai is currently closed for restoration so was just wondering if anyone's been recently and can advise on somewhere that might be reasonably quiet compared to Badaling which sounds like hell.
Also how would you get to your chosen part of the wall
Head to Mutianyu - I was in Beijing for the Olympics in 2008 and every single person I met who visited Badaling was disappointed. By comparison, Mutianyu was mostly deserted, even at the height of the Olympics.
When you arrive, head up the enclosed cable car and after you arrive, head left for as far as you want and then backtrack - from here you can take the cable car down or much more fun is to continue right and head to the toboggan for a fast and fun right back to the bottom of the hill.
Is Mutianyu relatively straight forward to get to as i have absolutely no Chinese language knowledge?
I have heard about the cable car and toboggan, both sound pretty good and the fact its more deserted is what i'm after more than anything.
It is a bit of a pain to get there on a weekday (you'll need to change buses, touts board buses at stops prior to the end of the line, but not sure what price they charge). There is a direct bus on weekends, but that means more crowds I'd suspect.
Being more than four years ago I cannot remember what bus I took, I referred to my Lonely Planet, which was accurate for the bus to the nearby town, but we had to take a taxi for the final section - their info on changing buses did not seem accurate in that 2008 edition.
That sounds like where i want to be heading for then. Thanks for the advice Shane, i shall do a little research to see how easiest to get there