Like an ancient dragon, the Great Wall of China stretches through northern China and stands as one of humanity's greatest accomplishments. It may be the longest man-made structure in the world, but it embodies a spirit that's more important than just its length. The Great Wall is a testament to what humans could accomplish even thousands of years ago. When China first began building the Wall in the 7th century BCE, it wasn't even a unified country. Today, visiting the Wall allows you to experience scenic views from atop one of history's greatest marvels. Not only can you learn about Chinese history, but there are sections of the Wall for everyone. If you want to test your endurance, you can try the Jinshanling section. If you want an accessible and beautiful section, try Badaling. The Wall has endured the test of time and has become one of history's most interesting remnants.

01A Long-Term Project

The Great Wall of China

Construction on the Great Wall began around 2000 years ago in the Qin dynasty. Around 220 BCE, the first emperor of a unified China ordered the removal of many older defensive structures and the merging of many of the existing walls along the northern border. Construction continued throughout many different dynasties, though most of the modern wall is the result of work during the Ming dynasty around 500 years ago. Eventually, China's borders extended beyond the Wall, and they saw no need to continue construction.