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Tour guide Lisa was very informative, tour offered to drop participants at different popular sites/ or subway stations on the way back to hotel to get the most out of the day
Well. I guess the best place to start a story is at the beginning...
I received a phone call at 9pm the night before and was told that I and my fellow traveler would be picked up at our hotel by 6:15am the following morning. Unfortunately, the driver was late, actually picking us up around 6:45am and driving like a bat out of hell to pick up a few other adventurers. Once the van was filled, the driver then drove us to a random Beijing street, made us get out of the car, and told us to wait there for the bus that would be arriving in 15 minutes. We were all quite shocked at these instructions, since the street we were on appeared almost deserted save the few locals opening their shops, a handful of early morning patrons, and some stray dogs. But waited we did, for the bus that arrived 25 minutes later. Once on the bus, we made several more stops to pick up more passengers and the tour guide Brian. Once we had picked up all the passengers some 30-40 minutes later, Brian just jumped right into some history of the Great Wall without introducing himself or anything which just felt really abrupt especially considering that there were a lot of confused people on the bus given the events of the morning. But the bus rolled along and we eventually made it to the wall. Brian handed out tickets, my travel buddy and I got ours and took off to climb up to the wall while many others in the group took the cable car. The climb was worth it spectacular views. I have quite a few framable pictures! We met back with the group at a restaurant at the bottom of the mountain where they served mediocre Chinese fare and we got back on the bus to sit for an hour in Beijing traffic and dropped off a block from our hotel. By that time, we were rather fed up with the experience with the transportation and were glad the day was over.
If I had to do it again, I would definitely choose a different company but I would definitely return to the Mutianyu region of the Wall.
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