Winter at Tantora

The Great Wall Marathon

by Benjamin Kerns

Dec 27, 2018

© Sean Pavone | Dreamstime

Trends / Health & Wellness

A walk along the Great Wall is near the top of every traveler’s bucket list. But few people ever get the chance to run it. The Great Wall Marathon is considered one of the most difficult on Earth. With more than 26 miles to traverse, this challenge is one for only the most dedicated runners.


The annual event offers three distances for runners — a marathon, half marathon and fun run — with each beginning at the Yin and Yang Square, Huanyaguang section of the Great Wall. It takes place on the third Saturday of May each year. While most of the race is run on asphalt, the trips up and down the steep steps see runners traversing brick, concrete, rock and other surfaces. Each participant will receive a medal upon passing the finish line, though only one can claim the top prize.


The marathon is timed, with runners expected to cross the finish line in less than eight hours. Those unable to accomplish this will be picked up and forced to ride to the end. Either way, you’ll be treated to some pretty incredible views in one of the world’s most awe-inspiring locales. If you think you’ve got what it takes to make it to the end, head over to the website and register for next year’s race.


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