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Thursday, July 18, 2024

Great Wall of China – Wonders of the World

Great Wall of China is definitely a bucket list must. When world wonders are thought of, people often use factors like the tallest, the biggest, etc., to decide which is truly the greatest. One of these, the longest, is the Great Wall of China. Created as early as 7th century BC, this fortification was built to protect China from a variety of different enemies, like the Huns and Mongols. Stretching over 3,800 miles from Dandong in the east to Lop Lake in the west, it has stood for centuries as a symbol of Chinese strength and ingenuity. If you visit the Great Wall of China, you can learn a lot more about the construction and history behind the structure, so consider this article to be a brief look at the wall, and why it’s so important.

The Watchtower on the Jiayu Pass, the first pass at the west end of the Great Wall of China, near the city of Jiayuguan in Gansu province in China.


During the 8th and 5th centuries BC, different states in China constructed fortifications to defend their own borders from civil war and infighting. King Zheng of Quin unified China and became the first Emperor, ordering the building of new walls to connect the walls of the states, fortifying the northern frontier against the Xiongnu. It’s believed that hundreds of thousands of workers died creating the beginning stages of what would become the Great Wall of China, utilizing mountain stones and earth to construct it.

Xian China May 30 2017 The world famous Terracotta Army part of the Mausoleum of the First Qin Emperor and a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in Xian China

Other dynasties would repair and expand the wall, to defend themselves from always-present enemies in the North. No regime had a more significant impact on the wall than that of the Ming dynasty, with the needed additions to the wall that you can see and walk on today. The addition of bricks and watchtowers helped fortify it against invasions from the Mongols and later, the Manchu. The Manchu would eventually get past the wall and into Beijing, establishing the Qing dynasty. They would annex Mongolia, and construction on the wall was discontinued.

The Great Wall of China

The Wall was never considered to be a tourist attraction, as China had a hard line view against foreigners and worked hard to prevent anyone from coming into the country. Myths and tales were told about the wall among travelers, even though Europeans would not see the wall until the 1700’s. China opened their borders after their defeat in the First and Second Opium Wars in the 19th century, and the Great Wall became a massive tourist attraction. To clear up a common misconception; no, the Great Wall of China can’t be seen from the Moon.

JIAYUGUAN CHINA  Jiayuguan Pass west end of Great Wall. a famous Historical site(UNESCO World Heritage Site) in Jiayuguan Gansu China.

If you want to see a country with one of the richest and most mysterious histories in all of recorded civilization, China should be at the top of your list. Learn all about the dynasties and different political ideologies of the country, see why they were so hesitant about foreigners and what opening their borders did for the country. Walk on the Great Wall of China, in the same footsteps that have stood for centuries, see the strength of a great people fighting to protect their homeland.

Figures of Soldier and Clay in China at the Great Wall


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