Chinese: 岢岚
Pinyin: Kě lán
English: Ke lan
Coordinates: 38°42'6"N 111°33'59"E

The Song Dynasty Great Wall passes through Kelan city. To the west, the wall goes for about 25 kilometers (15.5 miles), the first 12 kilometers (7.5 miles) of which is reasonably continuous. To the east, the wall is about 103 kilometers (64 miles), the first 56 kilometers (35 miles) and last 34 kilometers (21 miles) of which is relatively continuous.

Song Dynasty Great Wall relics at Kelan
Photo by Andreas Lehman

The wall is made primarily of limestone. Its condition varies greatly, from nearly intact in some sections to essentially undetectable in others. The wall follows ridges in mountainous and sparsely populated terrain.

One tower immediately north of the city of Kelan and a second one further north date from the Ming Dynasty. Ruins of few Song Dynasty towers and fortresses can be found along the wall to the east and west of Kelan.

Well-preserved Song Dynasty Great Wall
Photo by Andreas Lehman

The Kelan city fortress was about 1100 meters (3690 feet) by about 690 meters (2260 feet) in size. Many of its walls and towers are still in good condition.

Location summary: Kelan is located in midwestern Shanxi Province, about 437 kilometers (271 miles) southwest of downtown Beijing. It is about 79 kilometers (49 miles) southwest of Yangfangkou.

Driving directions: From Datong, drive south on G55 for about 84.5 kilometers (52.5 miles) from the ring road. Turn right (west) onto Shouzhou Branch Line and drive west for about 32 kilometers (20 miles) to Shoucheng. From Shoucheng, drive south on S206 about 21 kilometers (13 miles) from the south ring road to Yangfangkouzhen. Then drive east on S305 for 51 kilometers (32 miles) to Wuzhai. Finally, take G209 southwest for about 37 kilometers (23 miles) to Kelan.