Friday, January 9, 2015

Beijing Day 2 - The Great Wall

"He who does not reach the great wall is not a true man." - Chairman Mao

This post is going to be full of pictures because, well, it's the Great Wall - one of the Seven Wonders of the World.

On our way there, I thought to myself, "I can't believe I am actually going to stand on the Great Wall of China!"

I don't know why - but I always pictured the wall as more flat than it is...I knew it was high, but I thought it was the same elevation the whole way - like walking on a high, flat wall. Instead, it is like climbing a man made mountain! 

The sights from the wall are amazing  and we happened to go on a very fog/smogless day!

We walked up the wall for quite awhile and still only went a short distance of the 5,600 km (that is almost 3,480 miles - I had to look it up.)

By the time we made it about half-way to the "top" we were already huffing and puffing and sweating - despite the 50 degree temperatures, but we were urged to go farther by two other couples in our group, so we pressed on with them.

The views were so totally worth it! 

All over the wall are "Locks of Love". Couples purchase a lock, have it engraved with their names or initials and then throw away the key symbolizing their eternal love. 

We just took a picture at the top... :)

After climbing back down the wall, we headed over to the Jade Factory for lunch and a tour. The restaurant was beautiful and the food was so yummy! (No octopus, scorpion, or tarantulas were served. Ha!)

Jade is very prized by the Chinese people. It is even more prized than diamonds! Women are given jade on their wedding day. 

We were able to see how the jade is carved.

We were also given a lecture on how to tell real jade from fake jade and the different categories on jade. 

It was a great day and a fun tour! 

Next up - Gotcha Day!!!

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