1. Hadrian’s Wall
A defensive fortification built in Roman Britain, 73 miles long and 16-20 ft high. Built during Emperor Hadrian’s reign (duh), it was the most heavily fortified border in the Empire. A bunch of pieces still stand today, although the only assault on the wall these days are people braving the bike path.
2. The Atlantic Wall
The Atlantic Wall was a massive coastal fortification by the Nazis during World War II — all along the Western coast of Europe — as a deterrent to an assumed eventual Allied invasion of France and Germany. Despite the impressive length of the fortifications, we all know how this one turned out. #America
3. Xi’an City Wall
The fortifications of the city of the ancient capital city of Xi’an is one of the oldest and best preserved city walls in China. The wall around the city was built in 194 BCE. The city is also home to the famous Terracotta Army, which is an impressive army of faux-soldiers buried with Emperor Qin Shi Huang to protect him the afterlife.
4. The Red Fort of Agra
The Red Fort is a UNESCO World Heritage site located in Agra, Uttar Pradesh, India. It’s usually referred to as a walled city, clocking in at about 94 acres of protected space, it’s quite a site to behold.
5. The Berlin Wall
The greatest modern fortification. Once a symbol of the division of East and West Germany, the Berlin Wall separated the city into two halves, and symbolically, all of Europe, after WWII. Fortunately, portions of it only stand now as a reminder of the past, and a hope for a peaceful future. The remaining pieces also host some pretty awesome graffiti.
6. Krak des Chevaliers
Krak des Chevaliers is an impressive Crusader castle in Syria. It’s often cited as one of the most important preserved castles in the entire world. It was build in the 11th century. Sitting on top of a 2,130 ft hill, it’s one of the most impressive medieval fortifications left standing in the modern world.
7. The Walls of Ston
The Walls of Ston protect the city of Ston in Dalmatia, in what in now Southern Croatia. Often referred to as the “European wall of China,” the Walls of Ston once totalled 4.3 miles in length when complete. The limestone barrier dates back to the 14th century.
8. The Western Wall
One of the most famous religious sites in the world is also one of the most famous fortifications. The Western Wall, or the Wailing Wall, was built to protect the Jewish Temple’s courtyard in Jerusalem around 19 BCE. The total height of the wall in over 100 feet, with the exposed section climbing to a height of over 60 feet.
9. Great Zimbabwe
Great Zimbabwe is a ruined city in the south-east hills of Zimbabwe, and it features five meter-high walls (impressively built without mortar) in the years between the 11th and 14th centuries. Although much of the walls are now in ruin, the site is preserved as a national monument by the local government.
10. The Great Wall Of China
You knew it was coming: the mother of all man-made fortifications boats the most impressive stats. It ranges from 15-30 feet in width and an average of about 25 feet in height. It’s over 13,000 miles long. You can see it from space. Ain’t nobody gonna top that.