Bill Belew has raised 2 bi-cultural kids, now 34 and 30. And he and his wife are now parenting a 3rd, Mia, who is 8.
1. The Great Wall of China is written in simplified Chinese: 长城; (pinyin Chángchéng – the long city.
2. It is a series of stone and earthen fortifications that have been, built, rebuilt, and maintained from the 6th century BC and the 16th century.
3. Its purpose is/was to protect the northern borders of the Chinese Empire.
4. Several walls were built since the 5th century BC.
5. The most famous wall was built between 220–200 BC by the first Emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang.
6. The Great Wall stretches approximately 6,400 km (4,000 miles).
7. It starts from Shanhaiguan in the east to Lop Nur in the west.
8. It runs along the southern edge of Inner Mongolia and stretches to over 6,700 km (4,160 miles) in total.
9. The Ming Wall was guarded by more than one million men.
10. Some say that 2 to 3 million Chinese died building the wall.
11. Under Qing rule, China extended its borders into Mongolia and repairs on the Great Wall were discontinued.
12. At first, the Great Wall was built from stones and wood.
13. It was during the Ming Dynasty that stones were incorporated into the wall.
14, Except where the Great Wall is a tourist trap, attraction, in most locations the Great Wall is in disrepair.
15. Parts have been destroyed because the Wall is in the way of construction. The wall could stop the northern invasion, but not the march of capitalism, industrialization and ‘advancement’ of culture.
16. Some 37 mi of the wall in Gansu province will likely disappear in the next 20 years because of erosion from sandstorms.
17. The Great Wall of China was listed in the World Heritage by UNESCO in 1987 as one of the greatest wonders of the world.
18. You can take a 360-degree virtual tour.
19. The Great Wall of China now needs protection as the China Great Wall Academy reported on December 12, 2002, that the forces of nature and destruction at the hand of mankind is taking their toll on one of China’s most significant attractions.
20. To see the Great Wall in its most natural state visit Simatai, 110km (70miles) north-east of Beijing. This part is still in its original state without being developed into a popular tourist attraction.
21. Everyone should visit the place at least once. (that little dude on the wall…that would be me.)
The myth debunked –
The Great Wall is NOT visible from the moon.
Other resources –
Great Wall of China, History, Gallery of Pictures, Travel Guide