The Grand Canal is the longest human-made waterway in the world. With a length of more than 1800 kilometers and a width of up to 40 meters, he linked the north of China (Peking) with the fertile estuary area of the Jangtsekiang (Hangzhou). It crossed a height difference of 42 meters, was 3 to 9 meters deep and is considered the masterpiece of the water architecture in ancient China. Since 2014 he belongs to the world heritage of humanity.
Individual parts of the canal were created more than 2,400 years ago, according to the Han channel. Between 584 and 610, the Sui emperors (mainly Yangdi) expanded a sewer network, connecting the main cities of the Huanghe and Wei He to the lower reaches of the Yangtze River and Hangzhou to the south, and the region of today’s Beijing in the north.
After the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949, the Grand Canal was partly repaired, so that today it can be used as a regional shipping route and also as an irrigation canal. Because of the seasonal water scarlet in the north of China and the restricted navigability, however, it does not play a supraregional role anymore.