Archaeologists working in Vietnam just announced the discovery of what is being called “the Great Wall of Vietnam,” a 79-mile wall that is up to 13 feet high in some places.
The discovery is the work of Dr. Andrew Hardy of the French School of Asian Studies. Dr. Hardy’s quest began when he found a reference to the wall in a Nguyen Dynasty court document. The ensuing exploration and excavation took 4 years, but revealed what Vietnamese history Professor Phan Huy Lê told CNN is “the longest monument in Southeast Asia.”
As it stands now, the Vietnamese government tries to discourage outsiders from traveling to Quang Ngai, the province in which the wall is located. During the Vietnam War, the area was the site of the tragic My Lai massacre. However, that will most likely change soon. The monument has been submitted for National Heritage status, the first step in a plan to develop it for tourism.
CNN declared that while the plan will change tourism in Vietnam, which at the moment is geared toward controlled package tours, “it may also create the greatest trek in Southeast Asia.” I’m in!
Opening the Great Wall of Vietnam to foreign visitors may change the nature of Vietnamese tourism, but it’s not likely to change Vietnamese visa requirements. That means that Americans who want to trek along the wall will need to apply for visas in advance, before arriving in Vietnam.
For more information on how to get a Vietnamese tourist visa, see Vietnam Visa Requirements for Tourists.
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