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Great Wall of China Trek

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Several tourists walking along a section of the Great Wall of China on a sunny day, with clear skies.
Several tourists walking along a section of the Great Wall of China on a sunny day, with clear skies.
  • Starts: Saturday, 9 September 2023
  • Ends: Sunday, 17 September 2023
  • Event price: £299
  • Fundraising pledge: £3250

Step back in time to the 5th Century BC and take on the Great Wall of China Trek to help support people with sight loss.


  • 09 Sep 2023 - 17 Sep 2023
  • 14 Oct 2023 - 22 Oct 2023

Stretching over 6,000km, the Great Wall of China snakes through rugged country and steep mountains, showcasing China’s varied terrain. Your trek will follow the contours of the beautiful hills and mountains in the remote countryside north of Beijing. This physically demanding challenge offers fabulous scenery and a fascinating insight into a rich culture and history.

Find out who's helping make this possible

We're working in partnership with Discover Adventure to deliver this incredible challenge. With over 20 years’ experience operating fundraising adventures worldwide, and fully ATOL protected, you can rest assured you’re in safe hands!

What support will you receive?

Join #TeamRNIB and help us support people when they need us most. In return we’ll give you everything you need to smash your running and fundraising goals. You’ll receive from us:

  • expert fundraising advice
  • a fundraising pack full of top tips
  • an RNIB t-shirt and fundraising materials
  • personalised support from our friendly events team
  • top tips and training advice.

What to expect

Day 1: Depart London for Beijing

Depart from London for Beijing.

Day 2: Arrive Beijing; transfer Huangyaguan / Forbidden City Tour

Depending on your flight arrival time, you will either avoid Beijing’s considerable traffic and transfer to the start of the trek at the small town of Huangyaguan, where you can freshen up and relax! Alternatively, when your arrival time makes it practical, you’ll then transfer into Beijing. Here you’ll enjoy a tour of Tianenman Square and the Forbidden City, the must-see sight of Beijing, before a night in the city. There will be a full trip briefing in the evening. Night city hotel / mountain hotel.

Drive approx. 2 hours

Day 3: Huangyaguan

After a fairly leisurely start (or driving from Beijing), you’ll have our first experience walking on the Great Wall. After some steep step sections, which give you a good inkling of what lies ahead, you’ll walk predominantly downhill until you again reach Huangyaguan for the evening. Here the wall crosses the road that leads back to the accommodation. Night mountain hotel.

Trek approx. 3 – 4 hours

Day 4: Huangyaguan – Mountain Village

The day’s walk begins where you’ll have left the Wall yesterday, and you’ll head up the steep renovated steps towards what appears to be a sheer cliff face. This is where you’ll encounter ‘Heaven’s Ladder’, a steep climb of over 200 steps leading up the cliff face. There are fabulous views from the top, and once the group have had a short rest the path continues gradually on steep tracks through forest, up to the top of the ridge. Once again, you’ll join the old Wall, and follow it along the contours of the mountain until we clamber down into the valley below. You’ll bed down in the houses of a local village, a real cultural experience. Night will be spent in farmers’ houses.

Trek approx. 7 hours

Day 5: Mountain Village – Jinshanlin

Waving goodbye to our hospitable hosts, we’ll head up through the farming terraces immediately behind the village. The path is steep, and the terraces soon give way to rocky hillsides scattered with scrub. Eventually you’ll re-join the Wall, which is unrestored and crumbling so you’ll follow a path which takes you alongside it, with fabulous views along the ridgeline to the day’s highest point. You’ll then drop down the hillside and make your way on winding tracks through trees back into the valley, where farmers grow maize, and walnut and fruit trees. Back at the village, we walk along the village road to our waiting transport. Our drive through the mountains to Jinshanlin is very scenic. Night mountain hotel.

Trek approx. 4 – 5 hours; drive approx. 3-4 hours

Day 6: Gubeiko – Jinshanlin

A quick 20-minute hop in the bus takes us to our start point just outside the village of Gubeiko. You’ll walk through the village and farmland until our path takes us alongside an un-restored yet well-preserved section of the Wall. This part appears to be of almost brick-like construction and dates back to the Qing Dynasty – the last dynasty to rule over this vast land. You’ll follow a track down into the valley in order to skirt a Chinese military post and follow dirt paths through trees and undergrowth before rejoining the Wall. There are some steep sections, and we help each other out if need be. Stunning views of the Great Wall snaking along the hilltops keep us going whenever we find it tough! The final stretch to Jinshanlin is on restored Wall with lots of steps. A short walk through the village and small shops takes us to our simple accommodation. Night mountain hotel.

Trek approx. 7 – 8 hours

Day 7: Jinshanlin – Watchtower Panorama – Old Badaling

Starting where you left off yesterday, we’ll head up the carefully restored steps which take us into the mountains one final time. There are a few sections on older bricks and some dirt tracks, but for most of today you’ll walk on good flagstones. The scenery is superb with rolling purple hills fading into the distance, dotted with many watchtowers; classic ‘scales on a dragon’s back’ scenery. After time to soak up this breathtaking panorama, we’ll head down on small paths to meet our waiting transport which takes us to Old Badaling. Night mountain hotel.

Trek approx. 6 – 7 hours; drive approx. 2 hours

Day 8: Old Badaling – Beijing

The final day of trekking takes you up onto Shixiaguan (Stone Gorge) Wall, at Ancient Badaling, a recently restored stretch of the Great Wall that rewards us with wonderful views of our surroundings and is only occasionally visited by other trekkers, so it makes for a very unique and historic finale to our trek! Once we have absorbed the opportunities to take finish photos and enjoyed looking back over the mountains at our huge achievements, we transfer by bus to Beijing, the nation’s capital and home to over 20 million people! This evening we have a great celebration to mark our achievements. Night hotel.

Trek approx. 3 – 4 hours, drive approx. 1.5 - 2 hours

Day 9: Beijing

You’ll enjoy time visiting Tianenman Square and the amazing Forbidden City, before free time to explore or shop. If you saw this on your arrival day, you are free to spend your time as you wish. Night hotel.

Day 10: Fly Beijing to London

Return trip from Beijing to London.

How does it work?

  • sign up and pay a £299 registration fee to reserve your place
  • commit to a sponsorship pledge of £3,250
  • send your 80 per cent of your Sponsorship (£2,600) to RNIB 10 weeks before your event start date to confirm your place.

What's included?

  • all return transport from London to Beijing
  • all meals except where specified, and accommodation
  • discover adventure leaders; doctor with a group of over 15 participants; local guides and cooks
  • local support and back-up equipment
  • tour of Forbidden City on free day and entry to any other sites included in itinerary.

How does your fundraising help?

Every day, 250 people in the UK start losing their sight, and their lives begin to change. We want to make sure no one faces a diagnosis alone and that people with sight loss can live in a world with no barriers.

We won’t stop until every barrier has been broken down – from in the classroom to workplaces, from local shops to far-flung holidays. Together with your support, we can smash through the barriers and help people with sight loss thrive.

Any questions? We'd love to hear from you! Call us on our fundraising line 0303 123 9999 or drop us an email at [email protected]. Alternatively, fill out our contact form below.