Badaling is the site of the most visited section of the Great Wall of China, approximately 80 km northwest of urban Beijing city and 11km away from Juyongguan Pass. It means "giving access to every direction".
The portion of the wall running through the site was built in 1505 during the Ming Dynasty, along with a military outpost reflecting the location's strategic importance. The highest point of Badaling is Beibalou, approximately 1,015 metres above sea level with an elevation of 600 meters, the wall average 7.5 meters high, 4 meters thick, 6.5m wide on the base and 5.8m at the top.
The portion of the wall at Badaling has undergone heavy restoration, and in 1957 it was the first section of the wall to open to tourists.
The service staff abides by the concepts of giving top priority to the reputation of the motherland, the capital and the scenic spot, putting the interests of tourists first, serving tourists whole-heartedly, and promoting the spirits and cultures of the Great Wall.
Located 200 meters to the north of the Pass, the center has an information desk that supplies panoramic guide maps, tourism route maps and electronic tour guide service in the scenic spot. It also supplies electrically powered wheelchairs, manual wheelchairs, baby strollers and walking sticks. The staff workers will provide real and accurate information and warm services to tourists on the scenic spot, such as which parts are most pleasant to visit, which parts are most spectacular, and which parts are fit for a rest.
Hotline service: (010)69121383
Tourism consultation: (010)69122222
Tourism complaints: (010)69121235
Medical service: (010)69121209
Broadcasting service: (010)69121617
Police service: (010)69121477
Admission Fee: CNY 45 (Apr. 1 to Oct.31); CNY 40 (Nov.1 to Mar.31)
Cable Car: CNY 60 (single trip); CNY 80 (round trip)
Pulley: CNY 30 (single trip); CNY 60 (round trip)
Opening Hours: 06:30-19:00 (In summer); 07:00-18:00 (In winter)
Badaling Great Wall was officially opened to tourists in 1958. It is a section of the Great Wall opened earliest to tourists and receiving the largest number of tourists. In the five decades since it was opened, Badaling Great Wall scenic spot, on behalf of the Great Wall of China, was conferred with the World Cultural Heritage license by UNESCO.
It was listed among the first batch of important cultural relic sites under state-level protection by the Central Government, the best of the top 10 scenic spots in the country, the best of the top 40 tourism destinations in the country, and the country’s first group of 5A-class tourism scenic spots. In 2007, in the appraisal of the world’s new seven wonders, Great Wall maintained its top position because of its extensive and profound history and culture, and unprecedented prestige in the world.
This unique creation of human hands which is visible from the surface of the Moon.
The wall was stretched more than on 6300 kilometers and is almost equal on length to the third river of the world of Yangtze. It is one of the most important sights of China and one of the most visited monuments in the world.
“He - who doesn’t reach the Great Wall is not a true man” – Chinese proverb. Since 1988 - I’m – a true man!
Badaling Great Wall embodies the wisdom and civilization of the Chinese nation. It is laid with historical heritages of thousands of years. Badaling Great Wall, a place contested by all strategists since ancient times, is endowed with new historical missions these days. It strides across high mountains, straddles deep oceans, crosses time and space, and serves as a bridge of friendship for all people of the world.
There is a statue of Emperor Zhu Di of the Ming Dynasty within the Hall of Eminent Favour at Chang Ling. In fact, Chang Ling is built as the burial ground for Zhu Di, which is one of the most influencial of the Ming emperors.
The Baoding is a small hill which buries Emperor Zhu Di of the Ming Dynasty. It is located behind the Soul Tower and is kept intact so that it can be preserved. Probably beneath this hill is an incredible underground burial palace which we may never get to see.
The Soul Tower and Fang Cheng is a very impressive building which guards the resting place of Empress Zhu Di of the Ming Dynasty, whose tomb lies beneath a small hill called Baoding next to the Soul Tower. Future emperors of the Ming Dynasty will come here to pay respect to their ancestor Emperor Zhu Di.
As mentioned in part 1 of this tip, there is an impressive display exhibition in the Hall of Eminent Favour, including the emperor and empress robes and head-dresses, beautiful white jade and green jade belts, kitchen-ware etc. Photography is allowed but you cannot use flash. You should also take time to admire the interior design of this hall which is made of premium hard wood imported from the Western part of China.
This is a huge and impressive hall where the emperors of the Ming Dynasty come to Chang Ling to pay respect to the forefathers. This hall is now converted into a museum with very good display of items of the Ming Dynasty.
In between the Gate of Eminent Favour and Hall of Eminent Favour of Chang Ling, there are 2 beautiful sacred silk burner lining the path. These were used to burn commerative inscriptions and sacred silk materials after sacrificial rites of the Ming Dynasty of China.
Chang Ling is the biggest and most visited of the 13 Ming Tombs (most of them are closed to the public). There is a path leading to the entrance gate, which are lined with statues of various animals. However, nowadays the tour buses will send you to the doorsteps of the entrance gate, thus giving these animal statues a miss. The entrance gate is impressive with beautiful flowers lining the front part.
The Ming Tombs are a series of 13 tombs housing the remains of 13 of the 16 emperors of the Ming Dynasty of China (around 1300AD to 1644AD). They are located around the mountainous areas north of Beijing, the biggest tomb which is most visited is the Chang Ling tomb (however, the underground portion of this tomb is not evaluated so as to preserve it). If you want to see the underground portion, you can visit the Ding Ling located near to Chang Ling. Being near to Beijing and the Badaling section of the Great Wall of China, the Ming Tombs is one of the major attraction not to be missed (usually combined with Great Wall for a day trip). Please see my other VT tips for more information on the Ming Tombs.
When you are at the Great Wall, one of the good places to take photographs is through the windows and doorways at the towers in-between different sections of the wall. This will create a very good effect as shown by these photographs.
The great wall at Badaling offers fantastic views of the surrounding steep mountains. These steep mountains plus the great wall provided very strong defence from invaders from north of China. Despite this, invaders from the north still managed to rule China three times during history, namely Northern Jin Dynasty (Khitan tribe), Yuan Dynasty (Mongolians) and Qing Dynasty (Manchurians).
When you are at the Badaling Great Wall, you will see a guarding tower in close proximity. Such towers were important for surveillance and detecting enemies from a distance away before they reached the great wall.