The Great Wall deserves its designation as one of the seven wonders, in fact, I would put it at the top of the list. It is a feat unrivaled in the modern age. Construction for the Wall began in the seventh century BC but little of that remains. The majority of what we can experience was constructed during the Ming Dynasty in the 14th century. It is absolutely stunning and one cant help but marvel at the years of incredible work and engineering that went into creating it. In total the Wall is nearly 4,000 miles across and spans valleys and mountains along the entire width of China.
It was foolish of me to think that the Great Wall of China would be in the same shape as when it was built, it was silly to think it would remain in pristine condition, and it is folly to be mad at Sesame Street and the countless travel shows that has portrayed it as such. There are, in fact, parts that have been carefully restored and are appropriate for all ages, then there is the rest. Crumbling and perilous, for stretches the Wall is nothing but a pile of rocks to scramble up and down. Really, all I can say is that without a doubt this five hour hike kicked my ass. Am I glad I did it? Of course I am. Would I do it again, even if it was a crystal clear day? Maybe not. However, despite the physical pain, the view, the nuanced moments and the entire experience were truly magnificent.