The Great Wall of China
is one of the world’s most famous monuments. This massive construction, once famously believed to be visible from space, is a series of fortifications that surround the vast country of China. The Great Wall of China was designed to protect China from the various nomadic groups that lived outside its borders and would launch raids into the country. The first parts were built as early as the 7th century BC, but the majority of the existing wall dates from the Ming dynasty, placing its construction between 1368 and 1644. The Great Wall stretches over thousands of kilometers, with much of it still standing today.
Throughout Chinese history, the Great Wall of China has served to protect China from potential invaders. For long periods of time, China remained closed off from the rest of the world, and its impressive walls helped greatly to keep the kingdom isolated. Following China’s defeat in the Opium Wars of the mid-1800s, however, the Wall lost its defensive purpose as China opened up to the rest of the world. Afterward, the Great Wall became a popular tourist attraction, and it remains one to this day. Large sections of the Great Wall are still intact, and the Chinese government has restored some sections to show what the Great Wall would have looked like at the time of its construction. For many people, no visit to China would be complete without seeing the famous Great Wall. In fact, the Great Wall is one of the world’s most popular tourist attractions, visited by over ten million tourists per year.