Take a Great Wall hike. Have a beer. Life is perfect!
If you are a beer lover, nothing feels as good as a cold beer after a Great Wall hike. An ice-cold beer delivers the thirst-quenching and nutritional qualities I want after an exhilarating day hike. And, that’s my beverage of choice after walking the Great Wall of China, bar none.
Beer Can Be a Healthy Option After Walking the Great Wall
Although fitness buffs may turn up their nose at my personal preference, let’s take a moment and dispel the myth that select malts and hops are not good for you. These are three reasons I like a cold one while stretching my legs back in Beijing.
- Source of Energy: Many cold beers have about 13 grams of carbohydrates, and an accompanying local Beijing appetizer can replenish your bodily resources.
- May Improve Bone Strength: Malts and hops are reportedly an excellent source of silicon which aids bone and connective tissue strength.
- Heart Healthy: Moderate alcohol intake reportedly improves cardiovascular health and may lower the risk of a heart attack.
Those three items rank among the healthy reasons why having a relaxing beer after an amazing Great Wall hiking makes reasonable health sense. And for those who concern themselves with appropriate hydration, many beers have a high enough sodium content to aid fluid retention.
But it’s also important to recognize that not all beer is created equal. If you are going to top off your fantastic hike, select a beer worthy of a Great Wall excursion.
Top Beers to Consider After Hiking the Great Wall
There are two basic approaches to kicking back with friends and lightening the day with a beer that I’m inclined to undertake. The first is traveling back into Beijing or a neighboring village and experiencing authentic local flavor.
Beijing enjoys a robust craft beer community that includes popular microbrews such as Slow Boat, Great Leap, Jing-A, and Arrow Factory Brewing, among others. There are also numerous taprooms where you may find select regional options such as the following
- Devolution Brewing
- Dao Brew
- DM Brewery
- Heroes Beer Co.
- Strong Ale Works
- Young Master Brewery
Craft beer aficionados may be pleased to know that Beijing is a welcome opportunity to explore options you might not have available back home. When you first arrive in Beijing for that Great Wall experience of a lifetime, consider doing a little recon around the city and discover a brewpub that suits your post-hike expectations and craft beer needs.
End of Hike Beer Strategies
For those beer lovers who don’t want to wait until trekking back into Beijing before having a cold one, I feel you. But taking a day hike on the Great Wall can be quite different from packing a cooler for the average camping trip. Some of the terrains can be rugged and require both hands to negotiate. Getting bogged down with a heavy backpack full of beer may not be the best choice.
One option I find that allows me to carry an exquisite brew is utilizing a cold thermos or one of the extended cold cups that are trending. There are numerous brands that boast sealed tumblers that will keep a beverage cold up to 24 hours. That should more than suffice a day hike on the Great Wall and allow you to celebrate the end-of-wall experience with your beverage of choice. One last thing, please remember to drink responsibly.