Great Wall Marathon

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Great Wall Marathon Package

All details are based on the 2024 Great Wall Marathon and the prices and dates should be used as guide only. Please click on the "BECOME A PRIORITY CLIENT" button above to sign up, so that we will notify you as soon as further information becomes available. Alternatively, please pay a preliminary deposit and guarantee your place for next year.

Official Great Wall Marathon Travel Partner since 2001

Travelling Fit are delighted to announce that all packages booked before 30 November 2023 will automatically receive a $75 discount (taken off your final balance)

Travelling Fit has been an Official International Travel Partner for the Great Wall Marathon since 2001, and we are pleased to be able to offer you a host of Travelling Fit exclusive packages for the Great Wall Marathon and Half Marathon

Important Notes:

  • Budget Packages 1 & 2 are NOT hosted by Travelling Fit but by local representatives with no dedicated Australian representation.

The Travelling Fit Exclusive Package on the other hand, are organised by Travelling Fit, meaning we have more control of what goes on whilst in Beijing. It also gives you, the client, the opportunity to travel with other like-minded Australians travelling with us as part of a unique group.

For personalised Travelling Fit fully hosted tours (recommended) please refer to the Exclusive Travelling Fit Packages. In summary, the exclusive packages are as follows:

  • Exclusive Package 1 – Great Wall Marathon – 6 Days/5 Nights – Beijing
  • Exclusive Package 2 – Great Wall Marathon – 7 Days/6 Nights – Beijing

Please note that hotels in China are not always to Western Standards

Ei Chefgradient
    • Guaranteed Race Entry (Runners Only)
    • Arrival transfers from airport to hotel at set times
    • 5 or 6 Nights’ Accommodation:
      Check in: Tue 14 or Wed 15 May Check out: Mon 20 May
    • Breakfast Daily
    • Great Wall Marathon Course Inspection including lunch and transport
    • Celebration Dinner post Marathon Event
    • All other meals as per your itinerary
    • Departure transfer from hotel to Beijing Airport
      exclusive to Travelling Fit clients
    • Pre-Marathon Group Dinner Asian Style
      exclusive to Travelling Fit clients
    • Forbidden City & Tiananmen Square Tour including traditional Peking Duck Lunch – Exclusive Package 2 only
      exclusive to Travelling Fit clients
    • Supporters will be looked after on race day to cheer on the runners
      exclusive to Travelling Fit supporters
    • Travelling Fit Representative on site and available for questions
      exclusive to Travelling Fit clients
    • Personalised Travelling Fit Running Top
      exclusive to Travelling Fit clients
    • Invite to Travelling Fit’s Great Wall Marathon Closed Facebook Group
      exclusive to Travelling Fit clients



deposit and payment structure

Preliminary Deposit
$300per Runner
Initial Deposit
With Preliminary Deposit
$350 per Runner
$350 per Supporter
Initial Deposit
Without Prelim
$650 per Runner
$650 per Supporter
Second Instalment
$400 per Runner
$400 per Supporter
Due Monday 20 November 2023
Final Balance
Friday 09 February 2024
Trav Cut V2 Op

The Great Wall Marathon Route

The Great Wall Marathon is not just a race; it is a moment that will live with you forever! Nowhere else can a marathoner run over one of the world’s most famous landmarks, through picturesque villages and alongside China’s own rice fields.

Sounds like the marathon of a lifetime right? It is! Having run the Great Wall Marathon ourselves, we can highly recommend it. We can even do better than that, we can help you book a travel package that will save you money and give you peace of mind so you can concentrate on the marathon itself. Below is a description of the Great Wall Marathon course:

Stage 1: Great Wall ascent and the infamous “Goat Track”

No matter what race type you choose, all runners complete the same 8.5km to start the race. 

Commencing at Yin and Yang Square within the ancient Huangyaguan fortress. 

Participants commence the race along Jinwei Highway, travelling south for the first kilometre.

The route then takes a turn onto Changcheng Highway, leading runners into a challenging 4 km ascent towards the entrance of the Great Wall. This uphill path tests endurance early in the race.

Upon reaching the 5 km mark, the course transforms as runners meet the iconic steps of the Great Wall. A captivating 3 km stretch on the wall itself includes a loop around the fortress walls, offering breathtaking views and a glimpse into China’s rich history. 

The course then introduces a dramatic change at the 7 km point with the ‘Goat Track’, a 700 m steep descent back towards Yin and Yang Square. 

After rounding the fortress walls at the 8 km point, fun runners end their race in Yin and Yang Square while the half marathon and full marathon runners continue south towards Duanzhuang village.

Stage 2: Enjoy the scenes towards Duanzhuang village 

The next 4.5 km follows a picturesque route along the river towards Duanzhuang village. This stretch offers a scenic run, with views of the river and surrounding landscapes. It’s a chance for participants to appreciate the rural tranquillity of the region.

As they approach the 13km mark, the course takes the runners across the river. This is where the half-marathon runners and full-marathon runners route splits into 2. 

Half-marathon runners turn left to complete a 4 km loop through Duanzhuang village while full marathon runners continue south towards Xiaying.

Stage 3: Test yourself through the Chinese countryside

After the split at 13 km, marathon runners head south to Xiaying, transitioning from village energy to the tranquillity of the countryside. 

At 16 km, the route exits Xiaying, leading east on Maying Highway towards Dongjiafen village. The landscape is dotted with traditional homes and local farms, providing a rich cultural experience.

As runners arrive at the 20 km mark, they commence a 6 km loop passing through the village of Qingshanling. This steep section is challenging, however, it offers a deeper insight into the local community and their way of life.

Exiting the loop at 26 km, runners face a challenging climb up to Chedaoyu village, testing endurance and strength. Once at the village, a steep descent begins back towards Duanzhuang village. Both the full-marathon and half-marathon participants reunite just before the village at the 29 km and 16 km marks respectively.

Stage 4: Great Wall – Round 2

Once the half marathon and full marathon routes reunite, the runners cross a bridge back to Jinwei Highway. From there, they begin to run back towards Yin and Yang Square. 

This is where half-marathon runners finish their race and head straight for the square. For marathon runners however, they turn right and begin to mentally prepare navigating the great wall portion of the run once more. 

This time in reverse, runners start by ascending the ultra-steep ‘Goat Track’, before descending 5km down the Great Wall towards Yin and Yang Square where their finish line finally awaits.



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Great Wall Marathon Race Information

Entry Fees

The entry fee for the Great Wall Marathon is incorporated into the price of the package you choose and cannot be purchased independently.

Qualifying Times

There are no qualifying times for the Great Wall Marathon.

Start Time

The Great Wall Marathon starts at 7:30am (to be confirmed). Please note that those runners that are staying in Beijing will need to check with their tour leader as to specific wake up times in order to ensure that they do not miss their bus to the start.

Cut-Off Times

The cut-off time is eight hours from the start of the last wave.

At 14:00 (6 hours after the last runner in wave 4 has crossed the start line) the gate leading to the wall (32km point) will be closed. Marathon runners who have not reached the gate at this time will not be allowed to finish.

At 16:00 (8 hours after the last runner in wave 4 has crossed the start line) the Great Wall Marathon ends.

Runners still on the route will be picked up by a race official car and taken to the finish area.

Race Timing

The Great Wall Marathon will be timed using BibTag technology to ensure that all finishers are accurately timed.

Race Packets

T-Shirts and Race information (including race numbers and your Great Wall personalised BibTag) will be handed out to you by your tour leader once you reach your hotel.

Pace Setters

There are no official pace setters in this event.

Aid Stations

There will be water stations at approximately every 4 kilometres along the route. Some stations will also serve energy drinks and bananas. All stations provide bottled water.

Marathon runners will be offered energy gel after 26km and 35km.

Personal Refreshments and Clothing

No personal drinks are able to be left out on the course

It is possible to deposit bags with personal items for use after the race. Luggage can be stored in the designated luggage area at the Yin and Yang Square.

Please mark your bag clearly with your name and bib number. To avoid unnecessary queuing on the morning of race day, please mark your luggage before entering Yin and Yang Square.

Although the luggage area is manned, depositing personal belongings in the area is entirely each runner’s responsibility and the Great Wall Marathon organisers are not responsible for loss or damage of personal belongings.


Transport to the Great Wall and from the Great wall is provided as part of your overall package.


There is no Expo as part of the Great Wall Marathon although there will be various stalls setup at the start/finish area to purchase merchandise.

Finishes T-Shirts, Medals and Certificates

All competitors will receive the official race t-shirt. All finishers will receive a Medal as they cross the finish line and Certificates will be emailed to all competitors after the conclusion of the event.

Weather Conditions

The average May temperature in Beijing is between 16°C/61°F and 35°C/95° however the temperature out at the Great Wall will be cooler.

Light-coloured clothing, short-sleeve technical shirts are a good choice as sweat is not absorbed (like cotton), sun block is a must (use SPF30 or above), a running hat with visor is also advisable as it can help keep the sun out of your eyes.

Great Wall Marathon Elevation Gain

The two most substantial elevation gains during the Great Wall Marathon are both around 243  metres and occur during the first 7 km of the race and around for around 700 metres at the 36 km mark. Marathon runners also experience an elevation gain of around 200 metres from the 16 km – 23 km mark and around a 50-metre elevation gain during between the 27 km – 28 km portion of the race.

Other Events

8.5k run/walk
Half Marathon run/walk

Great Wall Marathon FAQs

The Great Wall Marathon offers a full marathon distance, which is 42.195 kilometres (26.2 miles). 

Additionally, the event typically includes shorter race options, such as a half marathon and an 8.5km run/walk.

The 2024 Great Wall Marathon will be held on Saturday the 18th of May.

The Great Wall Marathon is traditionally held in May each year. However, the exact date can vary. 

To find the specific dates for future Great Wall Marathons, it’s best to visit the official event page on the Travelling Fit website or contact the team directly.

The Great Wall Marathon is renowned for being one of the most challenging marathons in the world, due to the steep ascents and descents, uneven steps, and the varying width of the Great Wall itself. 

Runners face thousands of steps along the course, some of which are very high and uneven, adding a significant level of difficulty to the race. 

The weather can also add to the challenge, as May in China can be quite warm, contributing to the physical exertion required.

Preparation for this marathon typically involves specific training, including stair climbing and hill workouts, to adequately prepare for the unique conditions of the course.

Runners can expect to encounter over 5,164 steps during the race. 

These steps vary in size and steepness, presenting a challenge even to experienced marathoners.

The registration process for the Great Wall Marathon is straightforward however you need to register through an approved travel partner.

We can help you find a travel package that suits your budget and needs.

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