The Great Wall is one of the most architecturally impressive and historically significant structures on the planet. Many travelers dream of the day they get to plan a day trip from Beijing, or even a longer tour, to see the wall that has lasted throughout 2,000 years of history. While this trip is at the top of the wish list for many travelers, some people don’t take the time to learn facts about the Great Wall of China before visiting. To maximize your trip, do your research beforehand and you will gain a greater understanding of this incredible landmark.
Before you tour the Great Wall, or if you’re just curious about this landmark, you’re sure to have many questions. From how tall is the Great Wall to how old is the Great Wall, there is a wide range of information available about this UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Great Wall of China dates back to the second century BC and its many branches extend all across northeastern China, with the most accessible sections located outside of Beijing. While little remains of some pieces of the Great Wall, there are still areas where impressive stretches of the Wall have survived. These are the places that travelers today dream of visiting.
One of the best known facts about the Great Wall of China is actually a myth that has been discredited many times. Nonetheless, most people still believe that it is one of the few man-made structures that can be seen on the Earth’s surface from space. Beyond this commonly believed myth, there is a wealth of real and fascinating information to learn about the wall itself. For example, the portion of the Great Wall of China that visitors see today was built during the Ming Dynasty; and this portion is about 4,400 miles long. If you include incorporated natural barriers like mountains and rivers, this portion is about 5,500 miles long. During this time, better materials were used to build the wall, and therefore it was more likely to survive over a period of time than other, older segments of the structure. There are many package tours of Beijing, the Great Wall, and beyond, but independent travelers can also visit the wall on a day trip from Beijing.
But there is far more to the Great Wall than the best-preserved Ming sections. The Ming Dynasty portions were built in the 14th and 15th centuries. There is a vast network of other walls, beginning with the fortifications built by the first Emperor of China beginning 220 BC. Succeeding dynasties built more branches, and if you put all these together, the entire cast network of fortifications is a remarkable 13,171 miles long.
You might be wondering how tall is the Ming Great Wall, and while this may seem like a simple question, the answer isn’t a simple one. Along its more than 5,000 miles, the height varies greatly, from approximately 15 to 30 feet. This was a height that was sufficient as a defense tool for many dynasties over centuries. Not only was the wall constructed as a defense mechanism for enemies, but it was used against nomads as well. The wall helped to ensure that it was known who was passing through certain territories at all times.
Not all facts about the Great Wall of China are related to its history, however. Many travelers are interested to know that there are different ways of exploring the Great Wall. For example, hiking tours are growing in popularity as travelers are seeking ways to combine exercise and history. If you choose to take this type of tour, you will be able to figure out how tall is the Great Wall of China for yourself. This type of tour is a great opportunity to get beyond the main tourist spots, and gain a true understanding of the magnitude of this legendary landmark.