Introducing Badaling Great Wall
Badaling Great Wall is hidden deep in the mountains north of Changping County in Beijing. Badaling section of the Great Wall is the most representative, with its particularities. Bada in Chinese means thoroughfare, and ling means mountain ridge. It is used to be an important strategic communications center and defensive outpost of ancient China. Now as the best-preserved and most popular section, Badaling Great Wall has earned many brilliant reputations and favors from all over the world.
Badaling Great Wall Fast Facts
• Chinese Name: Ba Da Ling Chang Cheng 八达岭长城
• Best Time to Visit: Apr, May, Sept, Oct
• Recommended Visiting Hours: About 2 to 3 hours
• Opening Hours
Apr 1 to Oct 31: 6:30-19:00
Nov 1 to Mar 31: 7:30-18:00
• Entrance Fee
Apr 1 to Oct 31: CNY40
Nov 1 to Mar 31: CNY35
Cable Car: Single trip CNY100, round trip CNY140
Pulley: Single trip CNY80, round trip CNY100
• Address: Badaling, Yanqing District, Beijing
What to expect at Badaling Great Wall
Badaling Great Wall is 7.5 meters high on average, and the foundation is about 6.5 meters, narrowing up to about 5.8 meters on top, capable of allowing five mounted horsemen or 10 rows of soldiers to pass side by side. Badaling Great Wall has houses on the inner side and crenels on the outer side. Each crenel is about 1.7 meters high, with watch holes and shooting holes. At fairly close intervals, there is a fortified tower, usually on the mountain ridge or at wall corners or at the most strategic points. On the upper layer of the crenel, there are watch holes and shooting holes, and on the lower layer is the living area. The low ones are called wall platforms. Their height is similar to that of the Great Wall, but they protrude out of the wall, with crenels on all sides. It is a place for patrol. There are also some high platforms scattered along the wall. These are the watchtowers. In each tower were placed firewood, sulfur and nitrite. In emergencies, smoke was let off during the day. As wolf’s dung was mixed, the smoke could raise up straight to the sky, hence the name wolf smoke; at night, a fire would be lit, called in Chinese feng, or beacon fire. There is one watchtower or beacon tower every 6 kilometers along the Great Wall. Despite the distance, information about the enemy was passed on and reached the military command in hours. These towers formed a complete alarm system.
Because of differences in temperature, each of the four seasons at Badaling is about two weeks later than in Beijing. Spring comes late, but in no time, the whole mountain turns green. In summer, despite the scorching sun, there are sometimes refreshing cool winds. After a rain, the mountains are covered by veils of mist, making Badaling Great Wallseem as if it were flying in the clouds, sometimes visible, sometimes not. In autumn, the sky is high, with few patches of clouds and winds becoming cooler. After a frost, the whole mountain turns red, covered with wild fruit and red leaves. When there is snow in winter, a typical view of north China comes into view.
How to get to Badaling Great Wall
• Take Line S2 at Beijing North Railway Station, and get off at Badaling Station.
• Take Bus No. 877 at Deshengmen to Badaling Great Wall.
• Take Metro Line 13 to Huoying Station (Exit A). Then, take Suburb Rail S207 and get off at Badaling Station.
Additional travel advice on Badaling Great Wall
• Please wear comfortable walking shoes with a good grip.
• Badaling Great Wall allows 65,000 visitors a day. Visitors need to buy tickets online through the official ticketing system or their official account on Wechat. The online booking is available 7 days in advance, but English service is not ready yet. So foreigners need to buy tickets through travel agencies or friends knowing Chinese.