It was a tour of a lifetime. Our guy Joe was excellent. He was very knowledgeable about the wall in general as well as the history of China and give us great insight so that we could understand what we were seeing. The guide and driver were very punctual at the Hotel and the overall drive to the great wall was pleasant but long. Lunch was very good. We initially did the wall at Gubeikou then was brought to another less travelled part of the wall in the evening to watch the sunset. It was fabulous. The lighting as the sun set was spectacular. It would have been perfect if there was no haze that day but the views were breathtaking anyways. The pace was relaxed as it was dependent on how fast we wanted to go. We sat at the top of the watch tower gazing at the wonder of the wall and human achievement.
It was worth every penny. JOE was great. Our driver was also very good around Beijing traffic. They were also good enough to drop off a pair of glasses that was left in the car two days later saving the day...!!!
Would definitely recommend the tour to anyone and if possible ask for JOE as your tour guide.
This tour was one of the best tours I've been on. Our party of 5 was picked up promptly at the meet up time and provided with cold waters. The driver and Leo our tour guide were very polite and helped us into the van which has AC!. Leo is very fluent in english even though he hasn't been to any western nations. Leo then provided a small history lecture on the history of the Great Wall and Beijing. That plus the scenery made the 1.5 hour drive pass by in a flash. There was also a bathroom break in the middle of the drive. We then came to a small village and hiked/ walked up some stairs to our first fortress. Gubeikou is a non restored section of the wall and let me tell you, the feeling of history and wonder is abundant. Some places were a little steep and high for some of our members, but Leo provided alternate safer routes. After a few hours of viewing we had went back down. We drove for a bit more and stopped by a clean little restaurant where Leo recommended some good food and beers for lunch. It was delicious and refreshing.
After another half an hour we arrived at Jingshanling around the time of sunset. We quickly made our way up the stairs taking a couple dangerous shortcuts optional. The restored Jingshanling has a different kind of majestic aura than Gubeikou. We arrived at one of the higher forts and sat down to look at the sunset. Leo then took out a Great Wall wine with glasses for all of us to sip and a wine has never tasted so sweet. Afterwards we made our way back down, fell asleep on our drive back, and came back safe and sound.
I love how there was almost nobody in the sections of walls we were at. We saw a total of 20-30 people throughout the whole day which could have been thousands at Badaling or Mutianyu. I'm so glad we got to experience this tour thanks to Leo and his team. Sorry for the late review Leo and I hope you come visit us in California one day!
The tour was fantastic. I would rate it 6 our of 5. The guide arrived on time. The car was very comfortable. On the way to Simatai our first access to the Wall Joe told us lots of interesting facts regarding Beijing and general life in China. His English was perfect. Simatai was an old village which was transformed into a stylish 5 stars resort. The Wall is renovated in that place. You can get there by cable car or have a very pleasant 30 min walk. The walk was wonderful. We enjoyed it very much the view is breathtaking. We spend there around 2 hours. On the way to Gubeikou we had delicious late lunch in authentic restaurant. Gubeikau was a real treat. The place is remote and beautiful. The Wall was not renovated there. We had a fantastic experience. A Great Walk on Great Wall. Simply unforgettable Joe was the great guide. He meet all our requests. He dropped us in the restaurant to try Peking duck on the way back and it was wonderful. He organized transfer to airport for us and Beijing excursions with private guide which was also excellent. Without Joe our experience in China could be much poor. Thank you. I would highly recommend the tour and Joe.
The scenery and our tour guide, Tony, were both excellent. We were picked up as arranged from our hotel, and dropped back there. Tony was very entertaining and spoke excellent English. We visited two sections, one restored and the other in its original state. The latter was next to a small village and was our preferred bit of the wall. The views were stunning and it had begun to cool down a bit. A trip to the Great Wall had always been on my bucket list, and it was well worth it.
It's been a few months since our sunset tour and it was truly the highlight of our entire vacation. Our guide, Leo, made the tour the perfect experience for us in every way possible. He was friendly, patient, and knowledgeable! He knew the perfect spot to take spectacular sunset photos and even took the attached photo for us with our camera. It's now hanging on our wall at home as reminder of one of the best days of our lives -- yes, it was that great! The tour includes visiting two different sections of the great wall with a delicious lunch in-between. Leo even had a couple of surprises for us later on in the day. On the way back to Beijing we got stuck waiting at a security checkpoint for five hours due to an annual congress meeting taking place that week, but Leo and the driver had a great sense of humor about it and we had a good time waiting. They even knew that this delay would happen, but they still did the tour for us that day which we are so grateful for! Leo, if you're reading this, thank you again for such a memorable day!
This was the most amazing trip. No better way to see two really different areas of the wall. Miraculously did not see another tourist on either section. Our guide, Leo, was superb. So knowledgeable, so much fun and made our day really special. Didn't actually get to see the sunset but it didn't matter, the view was so incredible. Really important to be able to move at our own pace to make the most of the experience. Lunch also a highlight try the eggplant. Do this trip - and ask for Leo!
This was the highlight of our whole holiday! Our guide Joe was fantastic and very helpful throughout. After a 2 hour drive we stopped for lunch ordered by Joe and had some of the best food we had during our whole trip. Then to the old section of the wall.......after a short trek we arrived at the most stunning thing we have every seen. Along with Joe my wife and I were the ONLY people on the wall for miles! We literally had it all to ourselves! We then transferred to the other section and while this was more developed and the wall newer we still only encountered a few people. This tour entails a lot of walking up and down what can be at times steep steps and paths. Joe was very patient as it was slow at times due to our lack of fitness but every step was well worth it. Unfortunately the weather wasn't kind to us and we didn't get our sunset but overall the day was perfect!