On arrival at Beijing Capital International Airport, you'll see your driver and tour guide holding a card with your name: they'll help you with your bags as you hop into the climate-controlled vehicle. It takes about an hour to drive to one of the most famous landmarks in the world, the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Great Wall.
Less crowded than the Great Wall at Badaling, the Great Wall at Mutianyu is famous for its beautiful surroundings, with forest-clad hills and fresh mountain air. Enjoy a couple of hours hiking along the fully restored wall with your guide. Cable car up and toboggan to slide down would bringbe more interesting for your trip.
Enjoy an authentic Chinese lunch at a nearby restaurant before driving into the city. The journey takes around an hour and 40 minutes, traffic depending.
Your first stop will be the world's largest city square: Tiananmen square. Your guide will show you the Great Hall of the People, China's answer to the Capitol, the gigantic National Museum of China, and the Chairman Mao Memorial Hall, where the revolutionary leader's remains are preserved for posterity.
From here, it's about a 15-minute walk to the UNESCO-listed Forbidden city, Beijing's imperial palace and home to almost 600 years of history. Between 1420 and 1912 no fewer than 24 emperors, both Ming and Qing, ruled from here. You'll spend a couple of hours here with your guide, discovering highlights from entrance halls to private quarters, gardens, and museums.
At the end of your tour, your driver and guide will drop you back at the airport in good time for your onward flight.
Please note: the Forbidden city is closed on Monday. On this day, you'll visit the UNESCO-listed Summer Palace, the emperors' lakeside summer retreat, instead.