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Jiayuguan 嘉峪关 Travel Guide

Jiayuguan Overview

Jiayuguan is the symbolic Western end of the Great Wall and so one of the defining points on the Northern Silk Road. This was where the power of Han China dissolved into what the Chinese believed were the barbarian lands to the West. To be cast out of the magnificent fort here into the unknown was considered a fate worse than death for corrupt officials and other criminals who would be leaving Chinese civilisation behind forever. This prosperous city also has a restored section of the Great Wall as well as some tombs to visit making it a worthwhile stop.

Best Months to Visit Jiayuguan

jiayuguan when to go

Best Reason to Visit Jiayuguan

The magnificent fort is the main reason for stopping at Jiayuguan. Historically full of significance and it is also one of the few large forts in China and so differs in design and feel to temples.

Top Attractions in Jiayuguan

The main attraction is the Ming Dynasty Jiayuguan Fort built in 1372 in what became known as the “mouth of China” or it’s Western entrance. According to legend when Jiayuguan was being planned, the official in charge asked the designer to estimate the exact number of bricks required and the designer gave him a number. The official questioned his judgment, asking him if that would be enough, so the designer added one brick. When Jiayuguan was finished, there was one brick left over, which was placed loose on one of the gates where it remains today.

The Hanging Great Wall is a restored section of the 2,000 mile Great Wall system that starts (or finishes) at Jiayuguan and stretches to the coast east of Beijing.

Weather Averages for Jiayuguan

jiayuguan weather averages

Our Top Jiayuguan Travel Tip

Sometimes overlooked on Silk Road trips Jiayuguan shouldn’t be as it is an essential part of this route. The Fort may be the highlight but the City itself is pleasant, prosperous and manageable in size.

Hand Picked Jiayuguan Hotels

Jiayuguan has a pretty bland and uninspiring hotel selection but we think the Jiayuguan Hotel is a good option and a little bit of modern comfort is often quite welcome at this stage of a Silk Road trip.

Explore More of China

Click the boxes below to explore further styles of destination in China.

By Phil Stanley & Headseast – TCTC Destination Expert.

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