After early pickup from your central Beijing hotel, journey northward through rural China by comfortable, climate-controlled coach.
On route, hear about the Mutianyu section of the Great Wall from your guide. Located about 50 miles (80 kilometers) from Beijing, and one of the most famous sections, it was built in the 6th century before being reinforced in the 15th century. A 1.5-mile (2.5-kilometer) stretch was then fully restored in 1986.
On arrival at the foot of the wall, choose to either take the steps or cable car up (own expense) to the ramparts. At the top, stretch your legs along the battlements, admiring the spectacular mountain and countryside views, with the wall snaking across the hilltops.
Pass through several watchtowers: as many as 23 stand 328 feet (100 meters) apart along a section that ascends a mountain ridge. Plus, inspect the crenelated parapets. Unusual for framing the wall on both sides, they enabled soldiers to fire arrows at the enemy from both directions.
Afterward, descend by foot or cable car (own expense), and drive to a popular local restaurant for a Chinese lunch.
Your 7.5-hour trip then concludes with a drop-off at your central Beijing hotel.