Hey, that's a GREAT wall!
Simatai Travel Blog› entry 29 of 45 › view all entries
For the last 4 days, I had been trying to arrange a trip to the Great Wall - with no luck. My request did not fit the mass-tourism model, I guess.
knew that I did NOT want to be stuck on the wall in the middle of hundreds of
other tourists, following some flag-waving, shouting tour guide, and fighting
the crowds to get a photo that made it look like I was alone. In fact, I WANTED
to be alone on the Wall, as I had high hopes that this might be a some-what
Finally, however, I was able to convince the landlord of the apartment that I am renting to drive me in his own car. Despite his advice to go to Badaling, I was insistent that we would need to go about 3.5 hours away, to a section at Simatai.
And it was WORTH it!!!
There were only 3-4 other cars in the parking lot - and not a single tour bus! There were only two people selling things, and they were quite laid back.
This was an INCREDIBLE experience. Everything I had dreamed it would be - and more.
And yes, I had several opportunities to just sit on the wall - looking out at "
I also had the good luck to choose the longer path back down - which happened to lead to a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. I was able to ride a wild "Zip Line" (or "Flying Fox") back down to the bottom of the mountain. Imagine if you can, me strapped into a pulley and being launched over the cliff edge, and "flying" across the river valley to the lake below. Thrilling.
through the air below the