A stunning sight awaits visitors to Xi’an at its ancient city wall that has stood the test of time; here’s more on its history and what it has to offer.
Accessing the Wall
Before delving into the past, one should know how to access this site. Standing watch over the centuries, the wall is easy to reach from the city centre in Xi’an; hotels here including properties like Grand Park Xian are just a five-minute walk from the South Gate, the most popular gate providing access to this monumental structure.
The Wall Takes Shape
The origins of the Xi’an City Wall date to the 14th century under the Ming Dynasty’s first emperor, Zhu Yuanzhang. It’s said he sort the advice of Zhu Sheng, a sage of that time, who told him to encircle the city with a fortified high wall that would offer protection for the people. Begun in 1370 AD, the wall was finally completed in 1378 AD.
Additions & Expansions
Over time, the wall has evolved as well. Examples include the addition of blue bricks to the exterior in the 16th century and the creation of crenels and drains in the 18th century (Qing Dynasty period). During World War Two, more modern additions like bomb shelters within the base as well as new passageways were made too.
Visiting the Wall Today
Stretching for around 14 km and set beside a moat, the 12-metre high Xi’an City Wall offers lots to explore. To traverse the entirety of the wall by foot will take around four hours and provides inspiring views over the city. You can also consider making this journey on a captivating two-hour bike ride or by way of a buggy.