Monday, August 30, 2010

Pictures of the Great Wall of China – Orient Cruise on the Star Sapphire

One of the places I never thought I would be visiting was the Great Wall of China, until we decided to take a cruise to the Orient. 

Our trip to the great wall was actually after the cruise had ended. The Cruise finished up at Beijing, where we would be spending a couple of more days before flying home. It turned out pretty good. We inquired at the hotel about seeing the great wall, and they told us it was no problem to get a private tour to the wall.

We ended up with a guide and a car with a driver to take us to the wall, about an hour or so from Beijing. The cost was about the same as if we had taken one of the bus tours.

It was great. Having the guide right there with us was wonderful. We asked her all kinds of stuff and she was very informative. They took us to a part of the Great Wall of China that required us to take a cable car up to the wall… from what we understood it was a less-often visited part. Whatever… it worked out well for us.

The drive was very interesting. I’ve never seen such big power line towers. Those things were HUGE! It seemed to us that everything being built was really big. Big power line towers, big apartment buildings, big highways…

We knew we were getting close to the wall when we spotted the street vendors selling tourist type stuff on the side of the road.

Huge power line towers… The reason for the darkness of the photo is AIR POLUTION! Amazing how dirty the air was. You could look right at the sun… like looking through smoked glass.

Looks pretty inviting doesn’t it?

purses, hats, umbrellas, stuffed panda bears… everything you could ever want. Those steps on the left lead up to the cable car.

The steps that lead up to the cable car.  Kathy had to take a little break...

This is a veiw from inside the cable car as we approach the great wall.

We made it!  Kath and I standing on the Great Wall of Chinal!

Notice that there are people actually walking way down there... looks like an ok walk going down... but you have to come back up...

Inside one of the little guard towers... The guards lived in these little guard houses...

Kathy poses with our guide...

This is what awaits you after you get off the cable car at the bottom...

Is there no end to the steps?  Yes these are fairly steep steps.

One last shop, and it's back to Beijing.