Sunday, 29 May 2016

Great Wall Of China

(Picture by Richard Huckvale)
Another of the Seven Wonders of the world ticked off the old bucket list. The Great Wall Of China is of course spectacular, well the wall is alright its more the views and the grand scale of the wall that takes your breath away. Especially if you take a moment to think how hard it would have been to build the bloody thing.

We decided on booking a tour to the wall, we had spoke with a few other travellers who used local buses etc to get there which cuts down on cost, but to save the messing about and the stress we decided £20 to be picked up taken, fed and brought back was more than reasonable. We were taken to a part of the wall that is not very touristy (Badaling) which made the experience a whole lot more enjoyable.

We had to drive past the touristy part of the wall to get to where we were going and my god were there a lot of people there lined up like cattle there must have been thousands of people and hundreds of buses, coaches, cars and bikes. As i said luckily we were not going there, our tour guide Steven yeah thats right apparently so I am told Chinese people have a Chinese name as you'd expect and they also get to choose an English name (not sure how true this is but a few people have told me the same story)

So Steven gave us a little speech about the wall its origins and history then set us on our way to do as we please for 3 hours, now this part of the wall was pretty steep from the get go. No matter how fit or unfit you are the wall is a killer the steps are different heights and different sizes some parts you literally have to crawl on your hands and knees to get to where you are going, and of course what goes up must come down so after every incline there was a very very big decline. Make shift wooden steps which look and feel like they have been there since the bastard was built do not give you any sort of confidence when on the wall. Regular water and breathing breaks were taken, don't get me wrong there was the odd one or two gobshites that thought they could run up and down but soon the steady walkers passed them by.

All in all we spent 3 hours walking the wall and covered some distance the whole time we were there apart for the 20 people on our tour we saw maybe 10 to 15 other people, making it a lot more enjoyable than bustling about with shit loads of selfie stick wankers, oh yes if you hate selfie sticks trust me you've seen sweet fa till you come to the far east, every man woman and child has them here.

Honestly the wall itself didn't blow me away Karl Pilkington was right it's an alright wall of China - I mean don't get me wrong the structure is amazing the talent and hard work that went into building it was exceptional but it's just a really big wall thats it.... The views once you get to the top point are what make the experience all that more enjoyable. It also doesn't help that the vast majority of the wall is no longer original it's been renovated so many times it's not like you're seeing an old structure you're on old foundations but you can tell most of it is new and modern. Maybe my judgement was clouded but the fact I despised China as a country but I am pretty sure I am not and will not be the only one that was not blown away at The Great Wall Of China.

Take Care


Oh and sorry for the lack of blogs I have either not had the best wifi or simply not had the time this last 6 weeks or so have been none stop.

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