Situated near Beijing, the Badaling Great Wall is the most well-preserved section of the world-renowned Great Wall of China. No wonder it is also the most popular section to tourists among the Wall’s various sections. Let us then list down the basic facts about the Badaling Great Wall and the reasons why you should start planning your trip to visit one of the wonders of the world.
Facts about The Badaling Great Wall
- This portion of the Wall was constructed and strengthened during the reign of the Ming Dynasty which ruled China from 1368 to 1644 AD. They used the Badaling Great Wall to defend the city from the invasion of the Mongolians from the North.
- Badaling Great Wall’s length totaled 7.5 miles or 12 kilometers and it boasts a total of 43 watchtowers. But only 19 of such watchtowers and 2.3 miles or 3.74 kilometers of its total length were restored and opened to the public for viewing.
- The wall height of this section is averaging 7.8 meters or 26 feet and its width is at 6 meters or 20 feet. With such measurements, ten soldiers can be allowed to march abreast or five horses to gallop.
- The materials used in building the wall here are enormous bar-stones and bricks. Moreover, to make the wall firm and solid, rammed earth and small stones were stuffed in the interior of the wall.
- In order for the soldiers to watch their enemies and shoot them arrows, some holes were drilled in the wall.
- The watchtowers of the wall functioned as a place where soldiers can send messages, watch and observe the enemy, as well as store supplies. The watchtowers, just like the wall, also have holes for shooting and observing enemies.
- The important events in history that the Badaling Great Wall witnessed include:
- The first emperor of the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368 AD), Yuan Taizu, conquered this portion of the Wall and took control over Beijing and the whole country. That was the beginning of the Yuan Dynasty.
- Qing Dynasty’s (1644-1911 AD) Empress Dowager Cixi fled from here to go to western China in 1900 when Beijing was being controlled by an alliance of 8 western countries.
- The Badaling Great Wall’s visitors has reached tens of millions already and there are even over 370 international leaders and celebrities who visited this section, some of them are US presidents George Bush, Carter, Reagan, and Nixon, UK’s Queen Elizabeth II, and South Africa’s former president Mandela.
- CNY 40 from April to October
- CNY 35 from November to March
- 6:30 am to 7 pm from April to October
- 7 am to 6 pm from November to March
Why You Need to Visit Badaling
- As mentioned, this is the most popular section of the Wall since it is the most complete and best-preserved.
- When compared with the Wall’s other sections, most of the stairs of Badaling are not that steep. There are also handrails which can make your climb easier.
- Badaling Great Wall has a cable car and pulley which you can enjoy riding.
- It is very accessible since it is just 70 kilometers or 43 miles away from the downtown Bejing.
Badaling’s Cable Cars and Pulley
This section of the wall is divided into north and south portions which you can reach with cable cars and pulley.
The north section offers both cable cars and pulley. All visitors can access the cable car here which run between the back mountain’s parking lot and No. 8 North Tower. On the other hand, pulleys, which many tourists find to be more exciting and challenging to ride, has its lower station beside the Bear Garden in front of the mountain while its upper station is nearby the No. 4 North Tower. Little kids and seniors are not advised to take the pulleys.
There are no pulleys in the south section, only cable cars which run from Zhan Tianyou Memorial Hall’s opposite u to the No. 4 South Tower.
- Cable Car – CNY 100 for a single trip and CNY 140 for a round trip
- Pulley – CNY 80 for a single trip and CNY 100 for a round trip
- 8 in the morning to 4:30 in the afternoon from April to October
- 8:30 in the morning to 4 in the afternoon from November to March
Badaling’s North Section
This portion of the wall has a total of 12 watchtowers. The Wall here goes up and down the ridges of the mountain. It indeed offers a beautiful scenery but you will be needing more energy to climb this section. No. 8 North Tower is the highest point here and along the north section is the stone stele where the words “He who has never been to the Great Wall is not a true man” are engraved.
Before climbing the path that goes to No. 9 North Tower until No. 12 North Tower, think and access your strength and endurance first since it is not an easy path for many. When you reach the last tower (no. 12), you need not return the way you came. You can take the easier exit at the Bear Garden. The average time to complete touring the North Section on foot is 3 hours. Just take note that if you take the convenient way of exiting this section, you will need to pay another ticket in order to climb the south section. There is one more convenient path to descend between No. 6 North Tower and the exit but you should again buy one more ticket if you want to climb the south section.
Badaling’s South Section
This section has 7 watchtowers and the slopes here are gentler and less energy-consuming. There are fewer visitors here as compared with the north section. A quick exit from the No. 7 South Tower is located at the No. 3 South Tower. Visiting the south section takes around 2 hours on foot. No extra ticket is required if you covered this section, went back to the starting point, and start ascending the north section.
How to get there from Downtown Beijing
- Bus 877 at Deshengmen
- Tourist Bus Line 1 from Qianmen
- S2 Train from Huangtudian Railway Station