The Yanmenguan: Fortress and Trade Route
The Yanmenguan in northern Shanxi Province was not only impressive in size and beauty, but also a place of =ancient military importance. It was a piece of history that had endured the vicissitudes of wars, changes and clashes of cultures.
The construction of the Great Wall reached its peak during the Ming Dynasty and the Yanmenguan section was among the most representative ones. Running along the ridge of the Gouzhu Mountains, the Great Wall of Yanmenguan resembles a giant snake winding among the mountains. Although built during the Ming Dynasty, this section of Great Wall was constructed on the foundations of the ruins of much older walls built during the Northern Wei nearly 1000 years ago. Even today, Yanmenguan Great Wall maintains its original look of scarred walls and collapsed towers.