The Greatest Wall of All 6


Construction of the Great Wall of China started around the 5th century BC and was rebuilt and maintained until the 16th century. It stretches for 8,852 kilometres, so I am definitely not walking the entire thing! It is an amazing structure that offers an amazing opportunity for some fantastic photos.

When I toured Asia with my father in 2004, I visited the Great wall at Badaling. This is a very touristy location as it is well maintained and relatively close to Beijing. This time around, I wanted to see a more raw and untouched version of the wall, so I had to travel further out and off the beaten path. It took 90 minutes on a local Chinese bus and then another hour in a taxi to get me to Simatai. The lengthy journey would be turn out to be worth it. I had the wall almost completely to myself and most of the images I captured did not have a single person in the frame.

Right now, spring is almost here, but it still does not give me the green surroundings that I was hoping for. Instead, the look is very grey and baron. Either way produces some great photos as you will see below.

Getting up to the wall was a little more than a hike. I literally had to climb a small mountain just to get to the base of the wall. I walked from the Flowers tower all the way to the General tower. I am not sure of the exact distance, but it was 16 towers from beginning to end. Before my summit attempt of Kilimanjaro last year, I trained for three hours a day on the step mill with a 40lb pack on my back. The workout I had yesterday on the wall made those training sessions seem like a walk in the park. The unstable and loose rocks along with the knee-high steps made the walk feel like I was running the gauntlet.

Enjoy the images of the Great Wall, I am off to explore Beijing!

Climbing a Mountain to get to the Wall

Climbing a Mountain to get to the Wall

History under my Feet

History under my Feet

A Fisheye View

A Fisheye View

The Great Wall of China

The Great Wall of China

The Great Wall of China

The Great Wall of China

The Great Wall of China

The Great Wall of China

Towers of the Great Wall

Towers of the Great Wall

The Deteriorating Towers

The Deteriorating Towers

Inside the Towers

Inside the Towers

A little green in this brown and grey landscape

A little green in this brown and grey landscape

A Great View and Experience

A Great View and Experience


About Andrew Pateras

Andrew has lived in the GTA all his life and a good portion of his adult life has been devoted to sales. He studied Business Information Systems Management at Ryerson University. From there, he worked in sales for tier one organizations such as Hewlett Packard, Epson and Intel. Then as North American Sales Manager for GAP Adventures, he gained even more experience in negotiation and client service. Andrew has been a licensed real estate sales person since 2006. In 2007, Andrew also began a new venture in professional photography. Over the next number of years, he travelled on assignment all over the world. This is why he is meticulous when it comes to your marketing images! To say Andrew's travel and photography experience is extensive would definitely be an understatement. He has journeyed to remote and exotic locations in 48 countries on all six continents in search of adventure and authentic cultural experiences. Whether it is diving with great white sharks in South Africa, in a cage with Bengal tigers in northern Thailand or perched atop a land cruiser, photographing rhinos and lions in the Serengeti, he has likely photographed any holiday experience you can imagine. In 2015, Andrew earned the Directors Platinum award from Royal LePage for outstanding sales performance. Andrew's commitment as your real estate professional is to provide you with the specialized real estate service you deserve. Whether you're buying or selling, contact him with any questions that you may have. His promise to you is that your experience will be both stress-free and enjoyable. His focus is always YOU and the results you can expect from him.


Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

6 thoughts on “The Greatest Wall of All

  • Dodge

    As always, you make realizing these images look easy. Your output is amazing considering the travel fatigue, the weight of equipment, as well as as all the non-photo issues such as customs, unknown cultural norms, etc.
    We are better for photographers (and writers, artists) who share their art (their soul)!

  • Becks

    Hi Andrew,
    I came across your site when I was looking for images from the Japanese disasters and really appreciate the way you captured the event. I had been planning a trip to Japan when it occurred and have since canceled and rescheduled a trip to Korea and China (and perhaps Southern Japan) in a month’s time. It’s interesting and informative for me that you’ve visited China next. Great photos, I look forward to seeing more from China. – Rebekah