A Journey to China, Part 2: The Great Wall

I think this new format is working nicely. Easier to edit procedurally, and more emphasis on the photos. So let’s stick with it.

Day 2 of our package took us mainly to the Great Wall, though there’s a little miscellany on either end.

First we stopped by some of the Olympic structures. We were fairly intrigued by this streetlight design, though, and you can still see “The Bird’s Nest” at the base.
We also tried some kind of candied fruit from one of the street vendors. We still don’t know what it is, really. But it was tasty! This one was a little bit frozen from being stored outside, which when we got another in the underground mall the following day, we decided we actually liked better than room temperature.
On the way up to the wall, we were all ushered through a jade factory. Aside from the piece we brought home, this collection of silk embroidery portraits was our favorite thing there.
The part of the wall we saw was a fortress surrounding a valley. So there was a loop there that people could walk if they had the time.
Various members of our group managed different amounts of the ascent.
The views were stunning. I was really pleased with how well the photo captures the color fade over distance. The lone electrical pole feels telling, too.
Little outpost.
Another distance shot.
We drove past a frankly terrifying amusement park on the way back.
And took the tour up on the add-on to see a performance that night. We critiqued it heavily on lighting, costumes, plot, choreography and such (with help from one of our fellow tour members regarding acrobatics). It was certainly heavy on spectacle and the incorporation of water onstage (pools and a waterfall) was nothing short of astounding. They had spared no expense.

The following morning, we ditched the optional tour with that same fellow member of the peanut gallery to do some (not vary savvy) haggling for souvenirs at a big outdoor market. At least we were able to navigate the subway very easily!