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'The Piano Guys' scales the Great Wall for video shoot

Internet sensation, the Piano Guys are in China. The Utah-based group took some precious time off their Asian tour in Singapore and Malaysia to fulfil their China dream - shooting a music video on the Great Wall of China...

September 16, 2013
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Great Wall Forest Festival kicks off

The 2013 Yanqing Great Wall Forest Festival, the fourth edition of its kind, was held from August 24 to August 25 in the Tanglewood Music Valley at the foot of the Great Wall Badaling Section in Beijing's Yanqing County...

August 29, 2013
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Jet Team above the Great Wall

Aircraft of Breitling Jet Team, a famous European aerobatic team, perform above the Great Wall of the Jiayuguan Pass in northwest China's Gansu Province, Aug. 13, 2013...

August 16, 2013
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Unique section of the Great Wall draws in visitors

As people all know what the Great Wall looks like but did you know that some of it is built over water? The Jiumenkou section of the wall in Liaoning Province in North East China is famous for just that...

  August 09, 2013
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Shanhai Pass (Shan-hai-guan)

Shanhai Pass (Shan-hai-guan)Shanhai Pass stands 15km east of Qinhuangdao City, Hebei Province. Literally it means “the Pass of Mountain and Sea”. It is a popular tourist destination, featuring the eastern end of the Great Wall. The place where the wall itself meets the Bohai Sea has been nicknamed the “Old Dragon ‘s Head”

Shanhaiguan is strategically located between south of Yan Mountain, and north of Bohai Sea, hence the name. For centuries, the pass guarded the narrow passage between the Northeast and the Central East region of China. Both Northern Qi Dynasty and Tang Dynasty constructed small passes. The pass was rebuilt in 1381 by General-in-chief Xu Da of Ming dynasty as an important fortress. Later Ming general Qi Jiguang began fortification and construction of a military city around Shanhaiguan, building cities and forts to the east, south and north of the pass. Shanhaiguan became one of the most heavily fortified pass in China, and to this day, it is also one of the best preserved passes in the Great Wall.

Shanhai Pass (Shan-hai-guan)

After Ming Dynasty was overthrown by the Li Zicheng’s rebel forces, Shanhaiguan General Wu Sangui planned to surrender and join the rebellions when he heard that his concubine Chen Yuanyuan was taken by Li Zicheng. Enraged, he contacted the Manchurian Tribe and its Prince Regent Dorgon. Afterwards, Wu Sangui opened the gates of Shanhaiguan for Qing armies and together fought a decisive battle against Li Zicheng at the Pass. The victory made Manchurians successfully enter the Central East region of China, and finally established Qing dynasty ruling the whole country.

Shanhaiguan was a garrison town with a square fortress, around 4 kilometers long in perimeter. The walls reach the height of 14 meters, and are 7 meters thick. The pass's east, south and north side is surrounded by a moat of 8 feet deep and 17 feet wide. There are drawbridges to get over the moat, and in the middle of the pass stands a tall bell tower.

Shanhai Pass (Shan-hai-guan)

Originally all four sides of Shanhaiguan had a gate: Zhendong (East), Yinun (West), Mangyang (South), and Weiyuan (North). Due to lack of maintenance over the centuries, only Zhendong gate still remains today. Zhendong Gate is the most impressive in Shanhaiguan due to its position and size. On the gate tower hangs a huge board, inscribed on it "First Pass Under the Heaven". The Gate Tower (now The Great Wall Museum) houses an exhibition of ancient military uniforms and weapons including a saber that weighs 83 kilos, the heaviest in the country. You can go up the tower and take a panoramic view. Besides, 5 km south of the Pass, the Laolongtou (Old Dragon’s Head) is another attraction, where the Great Wall meets the sea here, which has been widely regarded as the eastern end of the Great Wall in Ming Dynasty.

Transportation:

Tourists can take train from Beijing or Shenzhen to Qinhuangdao. And the city has a small airport for civil use, there are flights available connecting Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Chengdu, Wuhan and Shijiazhuang.

The official site of Shanhaiguan Tourism Administration: http://www.shg.com.cn.

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