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Private Layover Tour: Mutianyu Great Wall, Tiananmen Square, and Forbidden City

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Beijing, China
Private Layover Tour: Mutianyu Great Wall, Tiananmen Square, and Forbidden City

From $208.00

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Free cancellation
Up to 24 hours in advance. Learn more
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icon8 hours  (approx.)
Pickup offered
Mobile ticket
iconOffered in: English and 2 more
Good for avoiding crowds

Operators have paid Viator more to have their experiences featured here


While on layover at Beijing Capital International Airport, let a personal guide show you the highlights around Beijing. Spend time exploring the UNESCO-listed Great Wall of China at Mutianyu and the Forbidden City. You'll also visit Tiananmen Square and eat a Chinese lunch. Round-trip airport transport by private vehicle is included on this full-day tour.
  • Private guide for a more personalized experience
  • Full-day private layover tour from Beijing airport
  • See the Mutianyu Great Wall and Forbidden City, two World Heritage sites
  • Explore Tiananmen Square on foot
  • Authentic Chinese lunch at a restaurant
  • Private guide for a more personalized experience
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Cable car or toboggan to the Great Wall
All taxes, fees and handling charges
Authentic local Lunch
Private guide
Round way airport transfers
Private vehicle
Capital Airport , Shunyi, Beijing 101300 China
After booking this tour, the meeting point and time will send by email.
Meet your personal guide and driver on arrival at Beijing Capital International Airport, and settle into the comfort of your private vehicle. You're transferred to the Great Wall of China at Mutianyu, located about 1 hour away. Spend a few hours exploring the UNESCO World Heritage site with your guide. You'll find this fully restored section less crowded than the Great Wall at Badaling, and the ascent is made easy with an optional round-trip cable car ride, or take the toboggan down (own expense.) 

Once you've worked up an appetite, sit down at a nearby restaurant for a lunch featuring authentic Chinese dishes. Afterward, it's about a 1.75-hour drive back into Beijing, depending on traffic.

The first stop on your city sightseeing is Tiananmen Square. Your guide will show you around the Great Hall of the People, National Museum of China, and 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 World Heritage–listed Forbidden City, Beijing's centuries-old imperial palace. Learn about the Ming and Qing dynasties that ruled here and spend time among the many entrance halls, private quarters, gardens, and museums. 

Conclude your full-day layover tour with drop-off at the airport in time for your onward flight.
Stop At:  
Mutianyu Great Wall
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 bring be more interesting for your trip.
Duration: 2 hours 
Admission Ticket Included
Stop At:  
Tiananmen Square (Tiananmen Guangchang)
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.
Duration: 1 hour 
Admission Ticket Free
Pass By:  
Great Hall of the People (Renmin Dahuitang)
Pass By:  
Chairman Mao Memorial Hall (Maozhuxi Jiniantang)
Stop At:  
Forbidden City-The Palace Museum
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 and Great Wall day tour instead. The Summer Palace was emperors' lakeside summer retreat.
Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
Admission Ticket Included
Pass By:  
Hall of Great Harmony (Taihe Dian)
Pass By:  
The Imperial Garden of The Palace Museum
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • A current valid passport is required on the day of travel
  • Passport name and number is required at time of booking for all participants (for getting your Forbidden City entrance ticket in advance)
  • Please advise any specific dietary requirements at time of booking
  • Vegetarian option is available, please advise at time of booking if required
  • Operates in all weather conditions, please dress appropriately
  • Please wear comfortable shoes
  • The Forbidden City is closed on Mondays. On these days, you'll visit the UNESCO-listed Summer Palace, the emperors' lakeside summer retreat, instead.
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Stroller accessible
  • Infants must sit on laps
  • Infant seats available
  • Not recommended for travelers with back problems
  • Travelers should have a moderate physical fitness level
  • This is a private tour/activity. Only your group will participate
  • OPERATED BY Lily's Tour Company
You can cancel up to 24 hours in advance of the experience for a full refund.
  • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 24 hours before the experience’s start time.
  • If you cancel less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
  • Any changes made less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
  • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.

Learn more about cancellations.

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Traveler Tips

  • "Highly recommend if you are looking for a day trip from the airport." See review
  • "My suggestion to future travelers is to be aware that the forbidden city is closed on Monday, this increases the number of people at the Wall and Summer Palace." See review

Reviews by Viator travelers.  We perform checks on reviews


58 Reviews
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Showing 1-10 of 58 reviews
Easy Airport Tour!
, Jan 2020
We had a great day! I was interested in this kind of tour as we had a 13 hour layover and knew this would be the easiest way to see the most! Linda's driver met us inside the airport and took us to meet Linda. She was great!! The most convenient door to door tour! Highly recommend if you are looking for a day trip from the airport.
Whirlwind tour of Beijing!
Denise M
, Oct 2019
If I could rate the arrival and obtaining temporary visa at the Beijing airport, it'd be a very poor rating, but the tour itself was very good! Our driver waited almost 2 hours at the airport for us to get through everything, then it was about an 1 1/2 hour drive into the city because the traffic is horrendous! We picked our tour guide, Lisa, there and the driver dropped up off at Tiananmen Square and the Imperial City. Lisa speaks pretty good English and is very knowledgable about the history of China. We had only had an hour or two of sleep, so we did our best to follow along. There are literally millions of Chinese people there EVERY day, and so getting through the crowds was difficult. That portion of the tour took longer than we were expecting, so we had to rush through the Great Wall, and that was what we were looking forward to the most. We got to the airport just minutes before our plane was boarding, so we were grateful we already had our boarding passes. The driver brought us right to the terminal, and Lisa went inside with us and pointed in the direction we needed to run!! Luckily security lines were not too bad that day as we wouldn't have made our plane otherwise! Very grateful that we were able to do this, as it was very impressive to see (one of the great wonders of the world!) and not sure if we would have seen it otherwise, as China is a long distance from home!
Great trip. Definitely a full day
, Jun 2019
This was a great trip. Linda served as our guide and did a wonderful job. The trip to the Wall was my number one destination, and it was spectacular. We went to the summer palace on this day as the forbidden city is closed on mondays. Linda offered great insights and helped guide us through long lines. They were kind enough to pick us up at our hotel and drop us off after the trip.
Super trip
, Jun 2019
This was such a great trip. Lily had the pick up and drop off point changed to our hotel. Linda was our guide for the day, she did a tremendous job navigating us through some large crowds, and hot weather. She was very knowledgeable about the history and geography of th area. Because it was Monday the forbidden city was closed so we toured the summer palace as a substitute. My suggestion to future travelers is to be aware that the forbidden city is closed on Monday, this increases the number of people at the Wall and Summer Palace.
Wonderful tour!
, Feb 2019
I had so much fun with the tour! 😊Book viator and you'll not regret it, and they have a good tourist guide! 😊
Short trip to Mutianyu Great Wall, Tiananmen Square and Forbidden City
, Jan 2019
Excellent tour guide and driver, lucky our trip was scheduled on Sunday so we missed the heavy traffic.
It was the best way to take...
, Aug 2018
It was the best way to take advantage of our long stay over in Beijing... in our way to Bangkok. They picked up us at the airport in the morning, we visited Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City before having lunch, and they went to the Great Wall, before returning to the airport. It was worthy although not a cheap tour.
Best tour and guide ever
, Jul 2018
Coco made my day, best guide, loved Beijin , thank you Coco for your knowledge and kindness, you dona great job teaching tourist about China!!
Our flight arrived a little late...
, Jun 2018
Our flight arrived a little late, but our tour guide met us right at arrivals and got us quickly moving on the tour. The drive was very comfortable as she explained as much about the country and city's history as she could in the short ride to Tiananmen Square. With limited time, she was able to fit a lot of information in and we got such great photos from her! At the Forbidden City, she explained so much about the symbolism and culture hidden within the site. The sites at the Great Wall and the sled ride down were so fun. Finally, because of our late arrival, we shared a very delicious local dinner and had some awesome beer from her hometown. Thank you so much for the wonderful tour during our time in China! Highly recommended!
This was a really fantastic tour...
, Jan 2018
This was a really fantastic tour! The airport pickup and drop-off were flawless, and my guide, Lily, was very knowledgeable. Walking the Great Wall was incredible - it is truly a world wonder. Lily also worked really hard to accommodate my food allergies at lunch, and I had an awesome Chinese meal that I'll definitely never forget. The Forbidden City is worth a couple of days in itself and I can't wait to go back to Beijing and explore some more. Thank you, Lily!
The tour was great! Our guide Joyce...
, Jan 2018
The tour was great! Our guide Joyce was very helpful and accommodating. We were picked up on time and dropped off with enough time to board our next flight. I highly recommend this tour.
Great time on my layover tour in...
, Dec 2017
Great time on my layover tour in Beijing. I had to wait about an hour for the driver to pick me up at the arrivals area of the airport. Then we headed into town where my guide Lisa provided a tour of Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City. She was very informative and provided answers to all of my questions. It was very cold, but still a great time seeing the sights. Lisa helped me haggle with a vendor so I could buy a warm hat since I forgot to bring one. After this, the three of us drove out near the Great Wall had lunch together at an authentic Chinese restaurant. Food was delicious and warmed us up before the trek up to the Great Wall. We hiked about an hour at the Great Wall. She helped me take pictures and again provided lots of information and answered my questions. After our Great Wall journey they took me back to PEK airport in time to catch my flight. I recommend this tour to anyone with about a 12 hour layover in Beijing.
Great tour for layover. Everything...
Dieter G
, Nov 2017
Great tour for layover. Everything exceeded our expectations and our tour guide even offered to take us to parts of the Great Wall that were old/unrestored for some fun hiking... of course we took him up on that and had a great time. No wasted time... this tour packs in all you could hope for in one day layover!

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