china beijing mutianyu great wall

Beijing Extension

The Great Wall, Forbidden City, and Summer Palace


More than 30 emperors have lived and ruled from Beijing, as evidenced by the incredible ancient monuments scattered across this vibrant international city. On guided excursions, visit the remarkable Great Wall, built and maintained from the 5th century BC to the 16th century to protect the northern borders of the Chinese Empire, and the Summer Palace, a veritable museum of classical Chinese architecture. Also see the Forbidden City, so called because it was off limits to commoners for 500 years. Today it is a showcase of the opulence of the Chinese imperial court.

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1

Arrive in Beijing, where you are met and transferred to your hotel. The remainder of the day is at leisure to rest or explore on your own. In the evening, enjoy a trip briefing followed by a Peking Duck dinner at a local restaurant...D

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Day 2
Forbidden City / Hutong / Temple of Heaven

This morning, gaze across Tianamen Square and visit the magnificent Forbidden City. Built between 1406 and 1420 during the Ming Dynasty, this great palace complex was the imperial home of 24 emperors of the Ming and later the Qing (1644-1911) dynasties. One of the best-preserved palaces in the world, it is full of rare treasures including pottery, bronzes, wood carvings, paintings, and famous calligraphic works. Later, wander through Beijing's hutongs, revealing traditional shops that help create the fabric of Beijing's past, visit a traditional siheyuan home to try your hand at local past times, such as calligraphy, Chinese yo-yo or knot-making. Time permitting, you will also visit the Temple of Heaven. Overnight at hotel...BLD

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Day 3
Beijing / The Great Wall

Join your local Beijing guide this morning for a 1.5-hour drive to the Great Wall at Mutianyu for your morning excursion. The Mutianyu section is well preserved and a good option for avoiding the crowds along the highly popular Badaling section. For lunch, we suggest enjoying lunch at Brickyard Mutianyu, which is just at the foot of the Great Wall. This is great for two guests. Alternatively, we can arrange a nice picnic with champagne on the wall (additional cost). After spending the morning on the wall, you have the afternoon to explore the Summer Palace, a UNESCO World Heritage Site set in the Western Hills of Beijing. There is plenty of time to explore this tranquil retreat before making your way by boat across Kunming Lake. Enjoy dinner on your own and spend the remainder of the evening at your leisure. Overnight at hotel...BL

Day 4

Transfer to the airport and depart on homeward-bound flight or to other destinations in Asia...B


Length: 4 days
Cost From: $2195  
Arrive: Beijing, China
Depart: Beijing, China
Lodging: 3 nights in hotel
Meals: Meals as indicated
Activity: Cultural Adventures
Trip Level:

Walking tours and cultural exploration

Visa Requirements

A visa is required for U.S. citizens visiting China. Your visa must be obtained prior to arrival.