Who Was Marco Polo, and What Makes Him so Cool Anyways?

Who was he and what did he do?

You may have heard of the game “Marco Polo” played by children in pools, but do you have any idea who this man was? Turns out that Marco Polo was actually one of the greatest explorers history has ever known. As a boy, Marco’s father took him to meet the great Kublai Khan in China. That may not seem too crazy now, but in the 1200’s this was no small voyage. Marco and his group had to travel all the way from Europe, through the middle east, and into China by land!

The Real Adventure:

While getting to China itself was certainly a great adventure, the true adventure began when they arrived. Marco Polo ended up spending the better part of 17 years working for the great Khan. He was asked to travel to the farthest reaches of the kingdom (one of the biggest the world has ever seen, by the way) in order to collect information and report back to Kublai Khan the things he had seen. Traveling was not easy in those days, but Marco’s journeys were made possible due to a golden passport given to him by Kublai himself. Any where he traveled, he would simply have to present his passport and the local people would give him food and shelter.

The Greatest Adventurer?

Marco’s circumstances allowed him to become one of the worlds greatest adventurers. Many of his tales were even recorded later in his life and can be read today in a book titled “The Travels of Marco Polo”. So great were his stories that many did not believe that he had ever experienced them. As we have reached more modern times, however, we can now see that many of the stories described by Marco have a lot of truth to them. By following the same routes that Marco traveled, it becomes clear that the cultures and landmarks he described really do exist!

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