Great Wall Discovery
14 - 22 September 2019
Great Wall of China
We'll head deep into the countryside away from the places where tourists normally visit this majestic structure. Our trek is very varied, as we pass through woodland and terraced farmland, and follow the contours of the beautiful hills and mountains in remote areas north of Beijing.
You will marvel at the panoramic views as you follow one of the Seven Wonders of the World across the beautiful hills and mountains north of Beijing, offering a fascinating insight into a rich culture and history. Our trek will follow old sections of the Great Wall, as well as restored sections with smooth flagstones and lots of steps!
Join the Best Trekking Team For Ages and support us on our mission to end loneliness and isolation for older people living across the UK.
To learn more about how your fundraising will help to change lives and connect our older generation in communities that care, please visit our Your Impact page.
Book your place on this once in a lifetime adventure by visiting the Charity Challenge website and selecting MHA as your chosen charity.
Beginning four hours north of Beijing, our challenge takes us on a series of vigorous upwards climbs of over 10,000 steps over the course of a week.
Self funder option:
Pay a registration fee of £395 when you book, then a balance of £1,615 (8 weeks before your challenge).
Raise as much as you can for MHA.
Minimum sponsorship option:
Registration fee of £395 when you book.
Raise a minimum of £3,295 for MHA.
To book your place on this unforgettable charity challenge, please visit the Charity Challenge website and select MHA as your chosen charity.
If you are unable to take part in this challenge alternative dates are available throughout 2018/19. Find out more>>
Day 1: Saturday 31 March 2018
International departure from London
The long-awaited journey begins at Heathrow Airport where the group will meet with a Charity Challenge representative for the first time. Any last minute nerves or anxieties will fade away as you jet off for your exciting adventure along China’s Great Wall.
Day 2: Sunday 1 April 2018
Arrive at Beijing and transfer to the Wall area
Touching down in Beijing, the group will be greeted by a local Charity Challenge guide who will oversee the long transfer to the hotel in the mountainous area surrounding Beijing. Do your best to battle jet lag as today is a great opportunity to explore your new surroundings. The group will get together for a first team meal, as well as a briefing about the challenge ahead. Don’t forget to ask any last minute questions!
Day 3: Monday 2 April 2018
Jinshanling Loop (approximately 5-6 hours)
And we’re off! After a short drive, we will catch our first glimpse of the magnificent Great Wall before starting off on our first climb on the iconic pathway. Today’s route includes parts of the original wall with steep, crumbling staircases and watchtowers. As the wall snakes along the horizon, we will be treated to panoramic views of up to 80 miles of mountains. With Mongolia on one side and China on the other, be sure to take time to soak up your surroundings. The endless steps will have taken their toll, so we’ll head to our new lodge for a well deserved rest.
Day 4: Tuesday 3 April 2018
Gubeikou Gateway (approximately 7-8 hours)
After a successful first day it’s a short transfer to begin what will be our longest trekking day, beginning from a nearby village. On slightly less than fresh legs, you’ll need to dig deep to overcome the long and demanding Gubeikou section. Hopefully the buoyant team morale and impressive views will help you rise to the challenge. We descend off the wall through rugged farmland, before going back up for the renovated Jinshaling section and ending the trek where we began yesterday. Expect to end the day feeling worn out but overwhelmingly proud of your achievement. Transfer to a new lodge for another rest.
Day 5: Wednesday 4 April 2018
Mutianyu section (approximately 5 hours)
Emotions are bound to be mixed as we set off for our biggest battle yet: the Mutianyu section. Take a transfer to the village of Xizhazi, where the day’s trek begins. From here it’s onwards and upwards towards the tower of Zhenbeilou, which is quite literally the pinnacle of the challenge. Prepare for a tough final stretch upwards to the tower, after which comes the reward of the incredible vistas. From here it’s a two-hour trek to Mutianyu, a much visited section of the wall but certainly worthy of a few pics. What goes up must come down, so be ready for hundreds of steps down to the waiting coach.
Day 6: Thursday 5 April 2018
Huanghuacheng (approximately 5 hours)
After the efforts of the previous three days, it’s an hour’s transfer to the village of Xishuiyu, where we begin trekking the Huanghuacheng section of the wall. Often described as the most exciting part of the itinerary by former participants, the main obstacle of the day is the overgrown and uneven path that involves some elements of scrambling. The morning is spent battling steep descents and narrow paths, before eventually reaching a paved part of the wall after lunch. Spirits will be high as we enjoy the magnificent views over the Xishuiyu reservoir below. It’s not time to relax just yet, however, as there’s a steep descent down to the final watchtower. The group will be transferred to a lodge for the night.
Day 7: Friday 6 April 2018
Badaling Great Wall (approximately 4-5 hours)
What a week! After a short drive, you will catch your final glimpse of the magnificent Great Wall from the vehicle before starting off on a steep and challenging climb along a rough and uneven path. This section of the wall has been recently renovated and so you will face a mixture of thin, uneven steps and sloped concrete sections. The final descent is short but very steep, with a slope rather than steps, and will test tired limbs. Your hard work will be rewarded with spectacular views and a well deserved lunch. Once down at the vehicle and en route, the bus may stop at either a silk or jade factory as it heads back to Beijing. Overnight in a hotel.
Day 8: Saturday 7 April 2018
Full day city tour of Beijing
After all that hard work, the group can now enjoy a day exploring China’s capital city. The guided tour will highlight the contrast of old and new, including the Old Imperial Palace known as the Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square, as well as the Temple of Heaven, where you can see the locals practising their morning sports. Then it’s time to shop for some last minute souvenirs before a final dinner with your new friends and trekking pals.
Day 9: Sunday 8 April 2018
Beijing to London
After a final breakfast together, the group will head for the airport for the flight back to Heathrow. Armed with a sense of achievement, you can feel proud as you touch down and share your fantastic journey with your family and friends.
By fundraising for Best For Ages, you are helping to connect older people in communities that care. Every penny of your donation will go further to reduce loneliness and isolation across the UK as well as funding award-winning music therapy in our dementia care homes. To learn more about our life-enhancing work, please visit the Your Impact page.
£6 could help us deliver a week's Telebuddies service, providing a regular phone call to check on five isolated older people living alone.
£50 could train a volunteer befriender for an isolated older person, helping to reduce loneliness and isolation in their own home.
£180 could fund a Music Therapist for a day, working to reduce anxiety in four 1:1 sessions and one group session.