Jiayuguan Heritage Area

Jiayuguan Great Wall

Jiayuguan Great Wall by Kevin Hale. Sourced via Flickr under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License.

Jiayuguan is the fortress at the extreme western end of the Ming Great Wall of China. Depending on your direction of travel, this is either the first or last gate in the Great Wall. Its position on the ancient silk road trading route made it an important location. The city of Jiayuguan slowly developed beside the fortress to take advantage of the trade.

The Great Wall itself doesn't actually connect the the fortress. The wall starts some 7.5km way at The First Beacon Terrace. This section of wall runs along the top of a 56 metre high cliff above the Taolia River. The hight of the location has given the wall section the name of Most Precipitous Beacon Terrace Under Heaven. The First Beacon Terrace Great Wall is open to the public. The tourist area covers some 3.5 square kilometres. There are several activities to do and see there including a cable slide, river rafting as well as touring the ancient wall and military camp.

In the centre of the city of Jiayuguan, there is a Great Wall museum.

Map showing location of Jiayuguan Heritage Area

Above: Location of Jiayuguan Heritage Area in Jiayuguan, Gansu, China