China’s Great Wall: 21,196 km

The scenary of Badaling Great Wall in Autumn.

The State Administration of Cultural Heritage report on China’s Great Wall protection states that the sections of the Great Wall in China total a distance of 21,196.18 kilometers, distributed throughout 404 counties, cities or regions in 15 provinces, autonomous regions or municipalities nationwide, such as Beijing, Hebei and Shanxi.

So, how long is 21,196 km? The world’s longest river Nile is around 6,670 km, the Great Wall is more than three times the river’s length.

The length of the Great Wall makes it very difficult to protect and maintain, but the state administration has an overall plan for its protection, which will be finished before this year ends.

Rescue and reinforcement projects will be implemented on endangered wall sections first, and drones will be used to strengthen inspection and financial support for less developed regions along the Great Wall will be made a priority.

Report said most parts of the Great Wall were built with local materials with rammed earth as concrete.

Weather, erosion and damage from human activities have collapsed or destroyed many sections. Local governments had ignored protecting the wall and some parts of the Great Wall were left with no supervision.

Liu Yuzhu, head of the State Ad- ministration of Cultural Heritage, said that a national-level monitoring and supervision system will be established by collaborating with mapping departments.

Drones will be used to strengthen patrol and regular maintenance.

Beijing has 573 km of the Great Wall distributed in six districts around the capital.

The staff said over 40 km of the Great Wall has been renovated in Beijing and the process is quite difficult due to geography conditions.

Beijing’s cultural relics department reported a volunteer team has been set up to regularly patrol the Great Wall in order to dissuade and report uncivilized behavior. The wild side of the Great Wall will be repaired gradually in the next five years.

The Jiankou section of the Great Wall, the most precipitous part, is currently under restoration.

The Great Wall, one of the Eight Wonders of the World, was first built during the Spring and Autumn Period (770-476 BC) and the Warring States Period (475-221 BC).

It is one of the most magnificent ancient military defenses, built originally to protect the northern borders of the Chinese Empire against intrusions by various nomadic groups such as the Huns from the north.