One of the Wonders of the World, in my dream-list since when I was little and learning about the world, I finally ticked it off in 2013, when I moved to China for a year.
Needless to say how amazing and impressive it is. The landscape is stunning: the wall running up and down the mountains and hills around you, repaired brand new or falling in pieces, leaving spaces to wild nature. There is nothing else around: Beijing is far enough not to see it, and there is only nature.
I tried to imagine how it was during the ages of the empire (I always do it, trying to picture how places “felt” like during their existence peak). Funny thing, I came up with this scene below of the Disney movie Mulan. At night, when the scary Hun Army manages to climb the Wall, and a Chinese soldier lights the signal from the guard tower with a torch. From that small fire, other signals go on all the way along the Great Wall, reaching Beijing.
Although not extremely realistic, I loved the picture in my head all along the walls I was seeing in that exact moment!
Small tip: there are two main accesses to the Great Wall in the surroundings of Beijing, Mutianyu and Badaling. I did some research when I had to choose, and Mutianyu was the best choice. Is is a bit less crowded (still, better to avoid bank holidays) and you will get the chance to see some falling-into-pieces parts, which are so much worth it!
And what about you? Did you get the chance to explore this wonder? Did you have a very different experience, maybe doing a long hike or climbing from a different access? I am curious to hear from you!