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Earliest and Longest Canal


The earliest and longest man-made canal in the world is the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal. The canal was first built in the 5th century BC and was substantially extended twice during the Sui and Yuan dynasties. The canal begins at Tongxian County in Beijing in the north and ends in Hangzhou in Zhejiang Province in the south and has a length of 1,794 kilometers and a drainage area of 4,583 square meters, with 24 locks and some 60 bridges.

The Grand Canal flows past Beijing, Tianjin, Hebei, Shandong, Jiangsu and Zhejiang and links five major rivers -- the Haihe River, Yellow River, Huaihe River, Yangtze River and Qiantangjiang River. The Grand Canal of China is the world's oldest and longest canal, far surpassing the next two grand canals of the world: Suez and Panama Canal.


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