Falseguide
Home
Featured Posts
Featured Trip
All Posts
Full Trip Reports
Miscellaneous
Search

Previous Page 49 of 449 Next Full Trip Report
China Great Wall Mutianyu

16 April 2018

A really long journey to a really big wall

The pollution came back, but the weather is still good. Its Monday so crowds should be low, time to go to the great wall of China.
When I went in 2011 I went to the most popular section at Badaling, that is easy to get to, theres a train! Today I went to the second most popular section, Mutianyu, there is no train. Instead you have to take the subway to the long distance bus station, then a long distance bus to a place called Huairou, then another bus that may or may not come to the Mutianyu Great Wall parking lot, ticket area and pedestrian scam street, then a shuttle bus to the actual gate. It is as if they dont want you to go at all!

Apparently most sane people hire a driver or go on an organised tour, I am not that person, but lots of westerners were.
I think an entire USA catholic high school was there, along with countless elderly Germans with VHS cameras, and French draft dodgers on parent funded permanent world trips busy pretending the whole place is beneath them. There were actually a heap of South Americans too, you can spot them, they will be wearing a shirt that is their countries flag. I also spotted a group of Indian business men, in cheap suits, dragging their suitcases along the wall.

Surprisingly, the whole place was very clean, and there are toilets at different points along the wall amusement park historic zone. It really is an amusement park, there are numerous cable cars and chair lifts up, and then a luge track to take you back down (Adelaide used to have the same thing somewhere at Hackham?).

I will talk more about the wall in the huge number of photos below, but first, my return journey!
I had to retrace my steps, generally this is easy, as every type of transport heads back to the nearest big city, Beijing in my case. However the local bus that went back to Huairou comes sporadically, although it does come unlike the stupid Kobe bus in Japan. They really need to be running more of these buses, it was full to the roof, people were standing on the seat against the window with 3 more people on the seat. I do not know how the driver was able to operate the bus as people were against the front window.
The reason this is occurring must be because all the dodgy fake taxi drivers are paying the city to make it hard to get to the wall on public transport. Personally, I would have taken public transport even if a private car and driver were offered free, but I am a raving lunatic.

China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - At the long distant bus station you can buy pollution masks from a vending machine. Someone smart thought of this.

At the long distant bus station you can buy pollution masks from a vending machine. Someone smart thought of this.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - This is the bus stop at a random street on the outskirts of Huairou. The actual city looked quite nice, lots of plum blossom trees, new mall, nice riv

This is the bus stop at a random street on the outskirts of Huairou. The actual city looked quite nice, lots of plum blossom trees, new mall, nice river. The bus stop to the great wall is on a highway in an industrial area.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - This is the entrance to the great wall pedestrian shopping street. It is also where you buy tickets. They try and force you to buy tickets to the cabl

This is the entrance to the great wall pedestrian shopping street. It is also where you buy tickets. They try and force you to buy tickets to the cable car and luge. I refused. I went inside to the information desk and they told me to tell them I wanted the 45 Yuan entry ticket and 15 Yuan return shuttle bus ticket, and hold out 60 Yuan only, otherwise they wont listen because every westerner takes the cable car. Why take that when there is a perfectly good path up to the wall?


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - Here is the pedestrian souvenir street. I over paid for water here, and chocolate, they didnt have any real food. I have regrets I didnt buy food earl

Here is the pedestrian souvenir street. I over paid for water here, and chocolate, they didnt have any real food. I have regrets I didnt buy food earlier! I did however haggle in Chinese and get the water price down to half the original price shown to me on the calculator. She still made enormous profit, charging nearly $3 Australian for water that should be about 50 cents.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - I walked up from down there somewhere, pollution becoming apparent.

I walked up from down there somewhere, pollution becoming apparent.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - There is the wall!

There is the wall!


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - The path up to the wall was very pleasant. Spring hasnt fully sprung here yet, not many leaves on the trees, but there was a snow storm of pollen and

The path up to the wall was very pleasant. Spring hasnt fully sprung here yet, not many leaves on the trees, but there was a snow storm of pollen and lots of flowers along the path, I skipped along and sang to myself.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - The far side of the wall has some great looking mountains. Info on hiking routes is very hard to come by, frustrating. Lots of places are closed off f

The far side of the wall has some great looking mountains. Info on hiking routes is very hard to come by, frustrating. Lots of places are closed off from the public, they normally claim to be military bases. Some people go anyway, and vanish.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - Mountains through window.

Mountains through window.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - And after a lot of other photos, heres a photo everyone has seen before, the great wall of China.

And after a lot of other photos, heres a photo everyone has seen before, the great wall of China.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - I walked all the way to one end of the places you can get to and then turned back, re traced my steps and walked all the way past the other end into t

I walked all the way to one end of the places you can get to and then turned back, re traced my steps and walked all the way past the other end into the wild parts of the wall.
I walked right to the top of the mountain in the distance in this photo.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - Here is the luge track. Lots of people take the chair lift up, walk a hundred metres, take the luge track down.

Here is the luge track. Lots of people take the chair lift up, walk a hundred metres, take the luge track down.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - Some more wall. Colors look weird today due to pollution. I passed a lot of American teenagers saying like a lot, its like, like, you know, like.

Some more wall. Colors look weird today due to pollution. I passed a lot of American teenagers saying like a lot, its like, like, you know, like.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - Here is a dog. There are a few resident dogs around here, they seem to be very well liked. This is a very old dog though, he just watches everyone.

Here is a dog. There are a few resident dogs around here, they seem to be very well liked. This is a very old dog though, he just watches everyone.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - A bit more of those mountains!

A bit more of those mountains!


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - Still got to go all the way up there. This photo came out better than most.

Still got to go all the way up there. This photo came out better than most.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - A particularly steep section to come. I had lost most of the vocal fry suffering wealthy USA church group / high school by now. They had been replaced

A particularly steep section to come. I had lost most of the vocal fry suffering wealthy USA church group / high school by now. They had been replaced at one point by a very loud woman going 'BUCKET LIST ITEM......dramatic pause...TICK!


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - Still more big stairs to go. One of the highlights for me was seeing people, grown adults, having a full on sit on the ground tantrum declaring they c

Still more big stairs to go. One of the highlights for me was seeing people, grown adults, having a full on sit on the ground tantrum declaring they couldnt go on. Generally husbands reasoning with wives trying to explain that he hauled her all the way here from wherever to see this, and now she just want to go home.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - This photo is taken from the last of the official watchtowers. I had been all along the watchtowers. Now onto the 'wild' section of the wall.

This photo is taken from the last of the official watchtowers. I had been all along the watchtowers. Now onto the 'wild' section of the wall.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - Just before we climb over the barrier, I was actually impressed so many people had climbed to the top. Here is a reason why. Many work places come her

Just before we climb over the barrier, I was actually impressed so many people had climbed to the top. Here is a reason why.
Many work places come here for team building day. I saw lots of groups with a similar sign or banner. If you tried this in Australia you would get sued by all the obese office workers for discrimination. Meanwhile, its not discrimination against non drinkers to make EVERY...SINGLE....OFFICE.....SOCIAL....EVENT an alcohol fueled competition to be the biggest wanker.
Rant over.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - Here is a wild section of the wall. Notice the floor area is made of something different. I still think its been restored, numerous times, just not la

Here is a wild section of the wall. Notice the floor area is made of something different. I still think its been restored, numerous times, just not lately.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - And now I am nearing the top, prayer flags have appeared.

And now I am nearing the top, prayer flags have appeared.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - I knew I was at the top, thanks to this very well placed sign.

I knew I was at the top, thanks to this very well placed sign.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - A guy lives here selling drinks and snacks. Actually he lives in the crumbling watch tower with a dog. He spoke really good English for a quasi homele

A guy lives here selling drinks and snacks. Actually he lives in the crumbling watch tower with a dog. He spoke really good English for a quasi homeless Chinese man, we actually chatted for a couple of minutes. He never even tried to sell me anything.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - Me. I was sweating. It was hot and the stairs are steep and I did it without stopping to rest at all. Wheres my medal?

Me. I was sweating. It was hot and the stairs are steep and I did it without stopping to rest at all. Wheres my medal?


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - Now to re trace my steps back down to the series of buses and subway lines.

Now to re trace my steps back down to the series of buses and subway lines.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - Do you watch if you are the one? It is a Chinese version of perfect match, except the contestants will tell each other they are too poor / fat / old /

Do you watch if you are the one? It is a Chinese version of perfect match, except the contestants will tell each other they are too poor / fat / old / stupid, then the judges will lecture the contestants on how they have failed their entire life. Anyway, here is where the film that inspired the series filmed its proposal scene.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - Free entertainment was provided while waiting for the shuttle bus courtesy of the singing rickshaw man. His rickshaw is fitted out with huge blaring s

Free entertainment was provided while waiting for the shuttle bus courtesy of the singing rickshaw man. His rickshaw is fitted out with huge blaring speakers.


China-Great Wall-Mutianyu - And entertainment was also provided while waiting for the super full local bus, in the form of a bridge that exists for no reason and might fall down

And entertainment was also provided while waiting for the super full local bus, in the form of a bridge that exists for no reason and might fall down at any minute. It has intricate carvings on its concrete pillars.


PreviousPage 49 of 449NextFull Trip Report