Gubei Water Town‍

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Gubei Water Town (古北水镇)is officially known as Beijing Miyun Gubei Water Town (Simatai) International Tourism Resort (北京密云·古北水镇(司马台长城)国际旅游度假区). It is not a historical water town, it is a replica of  Wuzhen Water Town in the Southern China.

Gubei Water Town is built and managed by Beijing Gubei Water Town Tourism Co.,Ltd.which is jointly invested by China CYTS Tours Holding Co.,Ltd., Wuzhen Tourism Development Co.,Ltd., Beijing Energy Investment Holding Co.,Ltd.and Strategic Investor.

The Construction of Gubei Water Town
The water town is built on the former 5 sub natural villages of Simatai Village at the foot of Simatai Great Wall.  The displaced Simatai villagers have moved to the new apartments and townhouses in Simatai New Village, 1.5km west of the old Simatai Village.

This water town is situated in Gubei Township of Miyun County northeast of Beijing, hence the name of Gubei Water Town. It has a charming location with a massive backdrop of the world famous Simatai Great Wall with the romantic Yuanyang Lake ( Mandarin Duck ) below.

The Simatai village was developed from Simatai Castle built during the reign of Emperor Wanli ( 1573 -1620 ) in Ming Dynasty ( 1368 – 1644 ). So the Gubei Water Town resort is a rare combo of Great Wall, Mountains, Lakes and Ancient Villages.

The Gubei Water Town holiday resort  takes an area of 9 square km and the scenic area of the water town resort occupies an area of 0.43 million square meters that is composed of Ming, Qing and Republic era style courtyards, two 5 star hotels, 6 boutique hotels, 400 B&B, restaurants and shops, as well as over 10 cultural exhibition areas with good facilities.

It is not a historical water town, it is a replica of  Wuzhen Water Town in the Southern China.

Gubei Water Town Sightseeing & Leisure Area
The sightseeing and leisure travel area of Gubei Water Town basically consists of 6 areas including Old Barracks Area,  Minguo Street Area (Republic of China Street ),  Water Street Area, Wonglong  Fort Folk Cultural Area, Tanghe Ancient Castle Area and Food & Accommodation Area.

1. Minguo Street Area (Republic of China Street ) 民国街区
When you cross the stone bridge spanning over the Tanghe River, you will come cross an east – west street known as Minguo Street ( literally meaning “Republic of China Street”) which is designed to duplicate a street in the time of Republic of China ( 1912–49).

It seems to me walking on the Minguo Street reminds me of Qianmen Street south of Tiananmen Square. Minguo Street is an open street free of charge outside the paid area. You will see banks, posts, markets, drug stores, clinics, book stores and more on the street.

2. Water Street Area 水街风情区
The Water Street Area is the highlight of Gubei Water Town.  It  brings vividly to life the water towns in Jiangnan ( the south of the lower reaches of the Yangtze River) represented by Wuzhen Water Town,  Zhouzhuang Water Town  and Tongli Water Town.

It reproduces in the northern China  winding rivers, the waterfront houses, arch stone bridges, cobblestone and stone  slab paths,  old buildings and folk life.  On the Water Street Area, you will visit Simaxiaoshao Distillery and Yongshun Dyehouse and other attractions.

3. Wonglong  Fort Folk Cultural Area 卧龙堡民俗文化区
Along the Tanghe River after the Water Street Area is Wolong Fort Folk Cultural Area. This area is focused on the presentation and preservation of the Chinese folk culture, especially the folk culture in the northern China.

In this area you will appreciate the Chinese traditional houses, Yangwudi Temple, the village theater stage,  Yinghua Academy of Classical Learning and more.

Yinghua Academy of Classical Learning and more.

Yinghua Academy of Classical Learning and more.

4. Tanghe Ancient Castle Area 汤河古寨区
Built along the branch of Tanghe River the Tanghe Ancient Castle Area depicts the ancient fortress or castle life in Ming and Qing dynasties. In this area, you have the opportunity to experience the Eight Banner Guild and Zhenyuan Escort Agency.

Built along the branch of Tanghe River the Tanghe Ancient Castle Area depicts the ancient fortress or castle life in Ming and Qing dynasties

The Tanghe Ancient Castle Area

 5. Food & B&B Accommodation Area 民宿餐饮区
This is the Food & B&B Accommodation Area where you could find 400 B&B and bars.  Most of the B&B are built in the style of traditional hutong or courtyard in Beijing.

Most of the B&B are built in the style of traditional hutong or courtyard in Beijing.

Most of the B&B are built in the style of traditional hutong or courtyard in Beijing.

The interior of the Great Wall Bar at the foot of Simatai Great Wall.

The interior of the Great Wall Bar at the foot of Simatai Great Wall 11123

The interior of the Great Wall Bar at the foot of Simatai Great Wall 11123

6. Simatai Great Wall 司马台长城
The water town has a charming location with a massive backdrop of the world famous Simatai Great Wall. Simatai Great Wall is 5 km long with all together 28 watchtowers ( East 16 and West 12 ).

Simatai Great Wall

Constructed by the Ming Dynasty general Qi Ji Guang, it is one of the few stretches of the Wall that still preserve the original look of that period. It not only features unique points from other Great Wall sections, but also shows some features found nowhere. To the west there 12 watchtowers snaking on the sloping hills. To the east there are 16 watchtowers atop peaks up to 1,000 meters high.

The views are amazing. The wall at Simatai has received very little renovation. So Simatai Great Wall still retains all its original look. It is well beyond the reach of the great crowds of visitors who come to the more popular and easily accessible parts of the Wall.

7. The Old Garrison Town  老营区
The Old Garrison Town Area is outside the Guebei Water Town proper.  It mainly refers to the old fortress or castle area built during the reign of Emperor Wanli ( 1573 -1620 ) in Ming Dynasty ( 1368 – 1644 ).

The Old Garrison Town ( or popularly known as Simatai Castle)  was a small fortified city where the soldiers  and their family members stationed and lived at the foot of Simatai Great Wall in Ming Dynasty. They were responsible for guiding Simatai Great Wall and watching the movements on the top.

In Ming Dynasty, garrisons were required to be self-sufficient on food supplies through local settlements.  So less than a third of a soldier’s time was spent on actual military duties. Instead, most of his time was spent on working on the fields. The present Simatai Village was developed from the old garrison town or Simatai Castle.

The Simatai Castle is located on the west of the huge parking area south of the south entrance to Gubei Water Town.  The Old Garrison Town is under renovation.

8. Hotels within Guobei Water Town 酒店和客栈
The Gubei Water Town plans to build  two 5 star hotels, 6 boutique hotel and quite some guesthouses.  Some hotels have been opened to the public, such as Wtown Hotel,  Wuzhen Hui Boutique Hotel,  Baqi Guesthouse, Biaoju Guesthouse, Liyuan Guesthouse,  Wolong Guesthouse and more.

Wtown Hotel is a 5 star hotel sitting on a hillside and by the Tanghe River. Based on the concept of the European castle and Chinese Great Wall Watch Tower,  Wtown Hotel has been built into a modern and massive construction palace that can be  viewed anywhere in the resort. Wtown Hotel has over 400 rooms including standard rooms, superior rooms, Great Wall View rooms, suites and presidential suites.

Liyuan Guesthouse is a theme guesthouse based on the stories from Peking Opera. Each guesthouse depicts one act from the stories in Peking Opera. It has totally 15 rooms sitting in a two-storey building.

Each guesthouse depicts one act from the stories in Peking Opera. It has totally 15 rooms sitting in a two-storey building.

Each guesthouse depicts one act from the stories in Peking Opera. It has totally 15 rooms sitting in a two-storey building.

 Gubei Water Town Entrance Fee  门票价格

1.  Entrance fee: RMB 150
Senior over 60 years old: Half Price

2. Opening Hours: 8:00- 17:00 (  ticket  selling till 16:30)

2. Simatai Great Wall: RMB 40  ( You need to book your ticket by phone one day in advance)

Ticket Booking Phone Number: 010 – 81009999

Note:
1.If you buy the ticket for Gubei Water Town, then you don’t need to book your Simatai Great Wall ticket one day in advance.
2. Gubei Water Town + Simatai Great Wall Combo Ticket: RMB 170
3. Cable car at Simatai Great Wall: RMB 80 (single); RMB120 (return)

Gubei Water Town Transportation 交通

Self-driving: Driving along Jingcheng Expressway and get off at the 24th Exit of Simatai. Then drive according to the roadside direction signboard for 2-5 munites.

Fixed Departure Direct Shuttle Service:
Timetable for the bus service from Donghzimen to Gubei Water Town:
Mon – Fri: 9:00, 12:00 and 15:30
Sat – Sun: 9:00, 12:00, 14:00, 15:30
Location for Departure:
In Chinese: 出发地点:东直门外(公交站) 东直门公交枢纽站北侧 942、855路公交车场内
English: Departure: in the compound of Dongzhimen Wai Bus Terminal (also for Bus 942 and 855, and shuttles going Mutianyu Great Wall), 800 meters Northeast of the main building ( Dongzhimen Transport Hub).

Note: It is a bit tricky to find Dongzhimen Wai Bus Station. So how to get to Dongzhimen Wai Bus Station Compound ( 东直门外车站)?

The open-air Dongzhimen Wai Bus Station  Compound is about 800 meters away to the northeast of Dongzhimen Transport Hub. It is also a 10-minute’s walk ( 800 meters)from Exit E of Dongzhimen Subway Station.  You exit from Exit E of  Subway Line 2 at Dongzhimen, walk along Dongzhimen Wai Dajie (东直门外大街), then turn left and walk along Dongzhimen Wai Xiejie (东直门外斜街),  soon you will find the open-air bus station compound on your left side.

Timetable for the bus service from Gubei Water Town to Donghzimen
Mon – Fri: 12:00, 17:00 and 21:00 ( so the last bus leaving at 21:00 )
Sat – Sun: 12:00, 17:00, 19:00 and 21:00 (so the last bus leaving at 21:00)

Public Transportation:
Take public bus No.980 from Dongzhimen Transportation Hub and get off the stop of Gulou (Drum Tower) at Miyun County, then connect local bus  No.51 or 37 to Simatai Village.  Then walk to Gubei Water Town.

06611Tip:  Hassle-free Beijing Guided Tours
If you don’t want to go the do-it-yourself route and prefer the hassle-free escorted tours,  here are some options for guided tours to Beijing:

Simatai Great Wall & Gubei Water Town Day Tour   from US$85 p/p

Beijing Highlight Day Tour from US$59 P/P
(Tiananmen + Forbidden City + Mutianyu Great Wall)
Beijing Classic City Tour from US$65 P/P
(Tiananmen + Forbidden City + Temple of Heaven + Summer Palace)
Beijing Excursion Tour from US$59 P/P
(Mutianyu Great Wall + Ming Tomb)
Beijing Hutong Highlight Tour from US$59 P/P
( Hutong + Rickshaw)

Mutianyu Great Wall Half Day Tour from US$55 p/p
Hike from Jiankou to Mutianyu Great Wall Day Tour from US$69 p/p

Mutianyu Great Wall Layover Tour from US$65 p/p
Beijing Highlight Layover Tour from US$75 p/p

Further Readings


Top 10 Attractions in Beijing
How to Visit Forbidden City
How to Visit Temple of Heaven
How to Visit Summer Palace
How to Visit Ming Tombs
How to Visit the Great Wall of China
How to Visit Tiananmen Square
How to Visit Hutongs
How to Visit Olympic Sites

Top 10 Markets in Beijing
Top 10 Shopping Malls in Beijing
Beijing Shopping

Wangfujing Night Snack Street
Qianmen Commercial Street
Beijing Huguosi Street

Any questions, just drop a line.

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36 Responses to “Gubei Water Town‍”

  1. Ris says:

    I got to know that the entrance fee is RMB150 now right? May I know that if there is any discount for foreigner tourists who are over 60 years old? Thanks.

  2. Beijing Tour says:

    Hi Ris,

    It offers half entrance price for seniors over 60 years old.

  3. Ris says:

    Does it apply to foreigner as well?

  4. Beijing Tour says:

    Hi Ris,

    Yes, it should apply to foreigner as well.

  5. Alessandro says:

    Hi,
    How long does it take to get to Gubei Water Town by public transportation from Dongzhimen?
    Thank you

  6. Beijing Tour says:

    Hi Alessandro,

    5 or 6 hours for Bus 980 + Bus 37, plus 2 km walk from Dongzhimen to Gubei Water Town.

  7. terry says:

    how can i arrange to get a private driver to take us from Beijing to Gubei water town?

  8. Beijing Tour says:

    Hi Terry,

    Just check out the link below, and contact us at info@tour-beijing.com :

    http://www.tour-beijing.com/car_rental/

    Thanks for your inquiry!

  9. cherry says:

    Hi! wanna ask what is the fastest and cheapest way to reach Gubei water town from the airport?how much and how long would the duration be? any recommendations for a cheap stay around the town?a hotel name perhaps? and if im planning to go to Tianyun Mt how do i get there?thanks alot

  10. Daniel says:

    Hi Cherry,

    1. The fastest and cheapest way to reach Gubei water town from the airport
    1) Fastest way is taking taxi or rent a car with driver:
    about 120 km,one hour 50 minutes and 450 yuan ( taxi fare )

    2) Cheapest way is taking pubic bus:
    Using three connected buses: about 4 – 5 hours

    3) any recommendations for a cheap stay around the town?
    You may stay in a home inn at Simatai Village, check out the link below:
    http://www.tour-beijing.com/blog/beijing-travel/simatai-village

    4) Tianyun Mt
    You may take the public bus 852 or 918 from Dongzhimen Transportation Hub for Pinggu District.
    The Bus 852 is faster than Bus 918. Arriving at Pinggu District Bus Terminal, then you change for the local bus No.25 for Lishugou, Huangdongyu (黄松峪乡梨树沟站).

    Also suggest visiting the Glass Sightseeing Platform in Pinggu, check out the link below:

    http://www.tour-beijing.com/blog/beijing-travel/tips-for-visiting-the-glass-sightseeing-platform-in-pinggu-beijing

    Have a nice time in Beijing!

  11. Ms Seah says:

    Hi, I would like to know if there is any public transport available that we can depart from
    Beijing airport to Gubei? As we are traveling in 5 person and we will arrive Beijing on 5am in the Mei morning. Thank you

  12. Daniel says:

    Hi Ms Seah,

    Thanks for your inqiury! It is very tricky and a bit daunting even for locals to use public bus lines to get to Gubei Water Town. You’d better off arranging your own tranport since five of you can split the cost. For car rental with driver, check out the link below for more information:

    http://www.tour-beijing.com/car_rental/

    Or email us at info@tour-beijing.com for a tailor-made transfer.

    Have a nice time in Beijing!

  13. Stella says:

    Hello,

    May I know for the shuttle service at Dong Zhi men how long is the journey to Gubei Water Town.

    How much is the shuttle service?

    Thanks.

  14. Daniel says:

    Dear Stella,

    The bus ride is about 2 hours and 20 minutes; bus fare: 48 yuan.

  15. Stella says:

    Hello Daniel,

    May I know is there any places for me to deposit my luaggue at gubei water town as I intend to travel directly from airport after arrival. Just intend to stay at gubei water town for a few hours and then travel to wangfujing.

    Thanks.

  16. Stella says:

    Hello Daniel,

    The entrance ticket for Gubei Water Town if I buy in the morning ticket can I use the same ticket after 5.30pm or do I need to purchase the night ticket. I know that they sell a morning session ticket n a night ticket.

    Thanks

  17. Stella says:

    Hello Daniel

    If I would like to hire a private car for 3 people to fetch us from gubei water town to wangfujing how much is the charge. Would like to leave gubei water town at 10pm.

    Thanks

  18. Daniel says:

    Dear Stella,

    Sorry for my delayed reply! One of our trip advisors will contact you by email soon. Much appreciated!

  19. Christine Walsh says:

    Hi Looking for a trip to Gubei Water town from Beijing with an overnight stay to see Great Wall at night. Any suggestions?
    Had a quote for £750 for 2 people which seems very expensive. Don’t particularly want to use buses.
    Thanks

  20. Daniel says:

    Dear Christine Walsh,

    Two suggestions:

    1) You can make use of the comfortable shuttle bus service ( not slow public buses ) operated by Gubei Town itself;
    Fixed Deaprture Shuttle Service:
    Timetable for the bus service from Donghzimen to Gubei Water Town:
    Mon – Fri: 9:00, 12:00 and 15:00
    Sat – Sun: 9:00, 12:00, 14:00, 15:00
    Location for Deparure:
    In Chinese: 出发地点:东直门外(公交站) 东直门公交枢纽站北侧 942、855路公交车场内
    English: Departure: in the compound of the terminal for Bus 942 and 855, North of the main building ( Dongzhimen Transport Hub)

    Timetable for the bus service from Gubei Water Town to Donghzimen
    Mon – Fri: 12:00, 16:00 and 21:00 ( so the last bus leaving at 21:00 )
    Sat – Sun: 12:00, 16:00, 19:00 and 21:00 (so the last bus leaving at 21:00)

    2) You can book your hotel inside Gubei Town online on your own;
    Click https://english.ctrip.com/hotels/ ( key words: Gubei Water Town ) to book your hotel

    3) You can buy your entry tickets for the town and the Wall on your own ( On the spot )
    The hotels inside the town are basically very expensive ( deluxe hotels, boutique hotels….. )

    Have a nice time!

  21. Adelyn says:

    May I check whether we can bring our luggages on to the Gubei Water Town shuttle bus as we are going straight after our flight. Can we buy the shuttle bus ticket to return to Dongzhimen 2 days in advance?

  22. Cindy says:

    Hi 4 of us are visiting Beijing in May, arriving in the afternoon and will like to stay at Gubei Watertown for the first night. Travel to Wang Fu Jing the next day. Any tour recommendation?

  23. Daniel says:

    Dear Adelyn,

    As far as I know, you can bring your own luggage though the space on the shuttle bus is quite limited and try to squeeze them on the isle on the bus. Basically you can buy your return ticket at Gubei Watertown. Have a nice time in Beijing!

  24. Daniel says:

    Dear Cindy,

    Thanks for your inquiry!

    Basically we don’t have a combo tour putting Wanfujin and Gubei Watertown though we do have a day tour with Gubei Watertown listed below:

    https://www.tour-beijing.com/hiking_tours/simatai_great_wall.php

    Any questions, please email us at info@tour-beijing.com. Have a nice time in Beijing!

  25. May says:

    Hi,
    1. How do i book the inn in gubei water town? i searched online but all not available. can you help me pls?
    2. i would like to reach Mutianyu by 0730am. i m going to stay near Forbidden city area. is there any private transport arrangement and how much is it? i just need single trip. i would like to stay there peacefully without worrying that the driver is waiting for me.
    3. i would like to have another private transport from Beijing south railway station to gubei water town. how much will it be?
    i will be in Beijing probably last week of July this year.

  26. Daniel says:

    Dear May,

    Thanks for your inquiry!

    I’ve just forwarded your inquiry to our service department and see what we can do for you in your particular case. Have a nice time in Beijing!

  27. Maria Batasin says:

    Hello,
    How much would it be to get a car from the airport to Gubei Water Town ok April 30th for two people?
    Thank you!

  28. Daniel says:

    Dear Maria Batasin,

    Thanks for your inquiry!

    For the taxi ride from Beijing Capital airport to Gubei Water Town, it costs about 400 yuan ( one and half hours, 120 km ).

    For a private car rental with a driver, please check out the link below or email us at info@tour-beijing.com :

    https://www.tour-beijing.com/car_rental/

  29. JOSE LUIS FIGUEROA says:

    How SAFE is to be in your Country without speaking the language and foreign person

  30. Daniel says:

    Dear JOSE LUIS FIGUEROA,

    Thanks for your inquiry!

    Basically China is a safe destination for your vacation. have a nice time in China!

  31. René says:

    Hello

    Is there any public service operating between Gubei Water Town and Chengde? If so, how much is it and what are the departure times?

    Many thanks in advance!

  32. Daniel says:

    Dear René,

    Thanks for your inquiry!

    As far as I know, there is no public bus service between Gubei Water Town and Chengde.

  33. René says:

    Dear Daniel

    Many thanks for your answer. Is there any possibility to get from Gubei Water Town or Simatai to Chengde directly?

    Many thanks in advance and sorry for bothering you with almost the same question.

  34. Daniel says:

    Dear Rene,

    Thanks for your inquiry!

    Basically there is no public transport directly operating the two places. Many travelers arrange their private transport or share with others for a road trip to Chengde.

    Hope you have a good time in your side trip beyond Beijing!

  35. Petrine says:

    Hi, we have 2 people & would like to arrange for transfer from Beijing international airport to Gubei water town and thereafter transfer from Gubei water town to Beijing city the next day. What are the transfer charges? Thanks.

  36. Daniel says:

    Dear Petrine,

    Thanks for your inquiry! One of our trip advisors will contact you for the details. Any further request, please email us at info@tour-beijing.com. Thanks!

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