A "listed site" is any location that has been designated as being of particular historical, cultural, or natural value or interest. Well-known categories of listings include World Heritage sites, the National Register of Historic Places in the U. S., and Listed Buildings in the U. K., although there are many places that have various local landmark designations, and we would like to include those as well. Such a listing may or may not confer legal protections on the designated site.This type is distinct from "protected sites",
which are guaranteed legal protection of some sort by their status. However, many such places will be both, and should
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Jvari or Jvari Monastery (Georgian: ჯვარი, ჯვრის მონასტერი) is a Georgian Orthodox monastery of the 6th century near Mtskheta (World Heritage site), Mtskheta-Mtianeti region, eastern Georgia. The name is translated as the Monastery of the Cross. For another, Jerusalem-located Georgian monastery with the same name, see Monastery of the Cross.
Jvari Monastery stands on the rocky mountaintop at the confluence of the Mtkvari and Aragvi rivers, overlooking the town of Mtskheta, which was formerly the capital of the Kingdom of Iberia.
According to traditional accounts, on this location in the early 4th century Saint Nino, a female evangelist credited with converting King Mirian III of Iberia to Christianity, erected a large wooden cross on the site of a pagan temple. The cross was reportedly able to work miracles and therefore drew pilgrims from all over the Caucasus. A small church was erected over the remnants of the wooden cross in c.545 named the "Small Church of Jvari".
The present building, or "Great Church of Jvari", is generally held to have been built between 590 and 605 by Erismtavari Stepanoz I. This is based on an inscription on its facade which mentions the principal
The Abbey of Saint Gall (German: Fürstabtei St. Gallen) is a religious complex in the city of St. Gallen in present-day Switzerland. The Carolingian-era Abbey has existed since 719 and became an independent principality during the 13th century, and was for many centuries one of the chief Benedictine abbeys in Europe. It was founded by Saint Othmar on the spot where Saint Gall had erected his hermitage. The library at the Abbey is one of the richest medieval libraries in the world. Since 1983 it has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Around 613 an Irish monk named Gallus, a disciple and companion of Saint Columbanus, established a hermitage on the site that would become the Abbey. He lived in his cell until his death in 646.
Following Gallus' death, Charles Martel appointed Othmar as custodian of St Gall's relics. During the reign of Pepin the Short, in the 8th Century, Othmar founded the Carolingian style Abbey of St. Gall, where arts, letters and sciences flourished. Several different dates are given for the foundation of the Abbey, including 719, 720, 747 and the middle of the 8th century. Under Abbot Waldo of Reichenau (740–814) copying of manuscripts was undertaken and a famous
Quedlinburg (German pronunciation: [ˈkveːdlɪnbʊʁk]) is a town located north of the Harz mountains, in the district of Harz in the west of Saxony-Anhalt, Germany. In 1994 the medieval court and the old town was set on the UNESCO world heritage list.
Until 2007 it was the capital of the district of Quedlinburg. Some places in town with Romanesque architecture are part of the holiday route Romanesque Road, such as St Servatius' church at the castles hill, St Wigbert's church down the valley and St Maries church on the Montsion's hill ('Muenzenberg').
The town of Quedlinburg is known since at least the early 9th century, when a settlement known as Gross Orden existed at the eastern bank of the river Bode. As such the city is first mentioned in 922, as part of a donation by Henry the Fowler. The records of this donation were collected at the abbey of Corvey.
After Henry's death in 936, his widow Saint Mathilda founded a religious community for women ("Frauenstift") on the castle hill, where daughters of the higher nobility were educated. The main task of this collegiate foundation, Quedlinburg Abbey (where the Annals of Quedlinburg were compiled), was to pray for the memory of King
The Dessau-Wörlitz Garden Realm, also known as the English Grounds of Wörlitz, is one of the first and largest English parks in Germany and continental Europe. It was created in the late 18th century under the regency of Duke Leopold III of Anhalt-Dessau (1740-1817), returning from a Grand Tour to Italy, the Netherlands, England, France and Switzerland he had undertaken together with his friend architect Friedrich Wilhelm von Erdmannsdorff. Both strongly influenced by the ideals of The Enlightenment, they aimed to overcome the formal garden concept of the Baroque era in favour of a naturalistic landscape as they had seen at Stourhead Gardens and Ermenonville. Today the cultural landscape of Dessau-Wörlitz encompasses an area of 142 km (55 sq mi) within the Middle Elbe Biosphere Reserve in the German state of Saxony-Anhalt.
The Gardens had its origin in the 17th century, when the marriage of Leopold's great-grandfather Prince John George II of Anhalt-Dessau to the Dutch princess Henriette Catharina, daughter of Prince Frederick Henry of Orange (Dutch: Oranje), in 1659 brought a team of engineers and architects from the Low Countries under the supervision of architect Cornelis
Ujung Kulon National Park (means : Western Tip) is located at the western-most tip of Java, within Banten province of Indonesia. It includes the volcanic island group of Krakatoa and other islands including Panaitan, as well as smaller offshore islets such as Handeuleum and Peucang on the Sunda Strait.
The park encompasses an area of 1,206 km² (443 km² marine), most of which lies on a peninsula reaching into the Indian Ocean. The explosion of nearby Krakatau in 1883 produced a tsunami (giant wave) that eliminated the villages and crops of the coastal areas on the western peninsula, and covered the entire area in a layer of ash averaging 30 cm thick. This caused the total evacuation of the peninsula by humans, thereby allowing it to become a repository for much of Java’s flora and fauna, and most of the remaining lowland forest on the island.
It is Indonesia's first proposed national park and was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1991 for containing the largest remaining lowland rainforest in Java. After the 1883 eruption of Krakatoa, many settlements in the park were wiped out and never repopulated.
Ujung Kulon is the last refuge of the critically endangered Javan Rhinoceros
Trier (German pronunciation: [ˈtʀiːɐ̯] ( listen); French: Trèves, IPA: [tʁɛv]; Luxembourgish: Tréier; Italian: Treviri; Latin: Augusta Treverorum; the Latin adjective associated with the city is Treverensis), historically called in English Treves, is a city in Germany on the banks of the Moselle. It is the oldest city in Germany, founded in or before 16 BC.
Trier lies in a valley between low vine-covered hills of ruddy sandstone in the west of the state of Rhineland-Palatinate, near the border with Luxembourg and within the important Mosel wine region.
The city is the oldest seat of a Christian bishop north of the Alps. In the Middle Ages, the Archbishop of Trier was an important prince of the church, as the Archbishopric of Trier controlled land from the French border to the Rhine. The Archbishop also had great significance as one of the seven electors of the Holy Roman Empire.
With an approximate population of 105,000 Trier is ranked fourth among the state's largest cities; after Mainz, Ludwigshafen, and Koblenz. The nearest large cities in Germany are Saarbrücken, some 80 km southeast, and Koblenz, about 100 km northeast. The closest city to Trier is the capital of Luxembourg,
Ohrid (Macedonian: Охрид [ˈɔxrit] ( listen)) is a city on the eastern shore of Lake Ohrid in the Republic of Macedonia. It has about 42,000 inhabitants, making it the seventh largest city in the country. The city is the seat of Ohrid Municipality. Ohrid is notable for having once had 365 churches, one for each day of the year and has been referred to as a "Jerusalem (of the Balkans)". The city is rich in picturesque houses and monuments, and tourism is predominant. It is located southwest of Skopje, west of Resen and Bitola, close to the border with Albania. In 1979 and in 1980, Ohrid and Lake Ohrid were accepted as a Cultural and Natural World Heritage Sites by UNESCO. In fact, Ohrid is one of only 28 sites that are part of UNESCO's World Heritage that are both Cultural and Natural sites.
In Macedonian and the other South Slavic languages, the name of the city is Ohrid (Охрид). In Albanian, the city is known as Ohër or Ohri. These names come from Latin Lychnidus and ancient Greek Lychnidos (Λύχνιδος); modern Greek Ochrida (Οχρίδα, Ωχρίδα) and Achrida (Αχρίδα).
Ohrid is located in the south-western part of Macedonia, on the banks of Lake Ohrid, at an elevation of 690 meters above
Tiger Leaping Gorge (simplified Chinese: 虎跳峡; traditional Chinese: 虎跳峽; pinyin: Hǔtiào Xiá) is a scenic canyon on the Jinsha River (Golden Sands River; 金沙江; Jīnshā Jiāng), a primary tributary of the upper Yangtze River. It is located 60 kilometres (37 mi) north of Lijiang City, Yunnan in southwestern China. It is part of the Three Parallel Rivers of Yunnan Protected Areas World Heritage Site.
Tiger Leaping Gorge is a contender for the world's deepest river canyon, depending on the exact definition used. The inhabitants of the gorge are primarily the indigenous Naxi people, who live in a handful of small hamlets. Their primary subsistence comes from grain production and foreign hikers (as well as Chinese).
Around 15 kilometres (9.3 mi) in length, the gorge is located where the river passes between the 5,596 metres (18,360 ft) Jade Dragon Snow Mountain and the 5,396 metres (17,703 ft) Haba Snow Mountain in a series of rapids under steep 2,000 metres (6,600 ft) cliffs. Legend says that in order to escape from a hunter, a tiger jumped across the river at the narrowest point (still 25 metres (82 ft) wide), hence the name.
Administratively, the river in this area forms the border between
Stone Town also known as Mji Mkongwe (Swahili for "old town") is the old part of Zanzibar City, the main city of Zanzibar, in Tanzania, as opposed to Ng'ambo (Swahili for 'the other side'). It is located on the western coast of Unguja, the main island of the Zanzibar Archipelago. Former capital of the Zanzibar Sultanate, and flourishing centre of the spice trade as well as the slave trade in the 19th century, it retained its importance as the main city of Zanzibar during the period of the British protectorate. When Tanganyika and Zanzibar joined each other to form the United Republic of Tanzania, Zanzibar kept a semi-autonomous status, with Stone Town as its local government seat.
Stone Town is a city of prominent historical and artistic importance in East Africa. Its architecture, mostly dating back to the 19th century, reflects the diverse influences underlying the Swahili culture, with a unique mixture of Arab, Persian, Indian and European elements. For this reason, the town was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2000.
Due to its heritage, Stone Town is also a major visitor attraction in Tanzania, and a large part of its economy depends on tourism-related activities.
The Aljafería Palace (Arabic:قصر الجعفرية Qasr Aljafariya, Spanish: Palacio de la Aljafería) is a fortified medieval Islamic palace built during the second half of the 11th century in the Moorish taifa of Zaragoza of Al-Andalus, present day Zaragoza, Spain. It was the residence of the Banu Hud dynasty during the era of Abu Jaffar Al-Muqtadir after abolishing Banu Tujibi of Kindah dynasty. the palace reflects the splendor attained by the kingdom of the taifa of Zaragoza at the height of its grandeur. The palace currently contains the Cortes (regional parliament) of the autonomous community of Aragon.
The structure holds unique importance in that it is the only conserved testimony of a large building of Spanish Islamic architecture of the era of the Taifas (independent kingdoms).
After the capture of Zaragoza in 1118 by Alfonso I of Aragon, the Aljaferia became the residence of the Christian kings of the Kingdom of Aragon and as such was converted into the focal point for spread of the Mudéjar Architecture of Aragon. It was the birthplace of Saint Isabel of Portugal in the year 1271. It was used as the royal residence by Peter IV of Aragon and subsequently, on the principal building
St Augustine's Abbey was a Benedictine abbey in Canterbury, Kent, England.
In 597 Saint Augustine arrived in England, having been sent by Pope Gregory I, on what might nowadays be called a revival mission. The King of Kent at this time was Æthelberht, who happened to be married to a Christian, Bertha. Whether or not his spouse influenced him, he allowed Augustine to found a monastery just outside the walls of Canterbury to the east of the city. King Æthelberht ordered the church to be erected of "becoming splendour, dedicated to the blessed apostles Peter and Paul, and endowed it with a variety of gifts" William Thorne, the late fourteenth-century chronicler of the Abbey, records 598 as the year of the foundation. Already standing on the site were three Saxon churches, dedicated respectively to Saints Pancras, Peter and Paul, and finally Mary. The Saxon-phase remains of the church of Saint Pancras are still extant, however, the other two churches were rebuilt by the Normans into one building. One of the main purposes of the abbey right from the outset was as a burial place for the Kings of Kent and the Archbishops of Canterbury.
In 978 a new larger building was dedicated by
Conwy Castle (Medieval English: Conway Castle; Welsh: Castell Conwy) is a medieval fortification in Conwy, on the north coast of Wales. It was built by Edward I, during his conquest of Wales, between 1283 and 1289. Constructed as part of a wider project to create the walled town of Conwy, the combined defences cost around £15,000, a huge sum for the period. Over the next few centuries, the castle played an important part in several wars. It withstood the siege of Madog ap Llywelyn in the winter of 1294–95, acted as a temporary haven for Richard II in 1399 and was held for several months by forces loyal to Owain Glyndŵr in 1401.
Following the outbreak of the English Civil War in 1642, the castle was held by forces loyal to Charles I, holding out until 1646 when it surrendered to the Parliamentary armies. In the aftermath the castle was partially slighted by Parliament to prevent it being used in any further revolt, and was finally completely ruined in 1665 when its remaining iron and lead was stripped and sold off. Conwy Castle became an attractive destination for painters in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. Visitor numbers grew and initial restoration work was carried out in
Divriği Great Mosque and Hospital (Turkish: Divriği Ulu Camii ve Darüşşifası) is an ornately decorated mosque and medical complex built in 1299 in the small eastern Anatolian mountain town of Divriği, now in Sivas Province in Turkey. The architect was Hürremshah of Ahlat and the mosque was built on the order of Ahmet Shah, ruler of the Mengujekids. The inscriptions contain words of praise to the Anatolian Seljuk sultan Alaeddin Keykubad I. The adjoining medical center (darüşşifa) was built simultaneously with the mosque on the order of Turan Melek Sultan, daughter of the Mengujek ruler of Erzincan, Fahreddin Behram Shah.
The exquisite carvings and architecture of both buildings put them among the most important works of architecture in Anatolia and led to their inclusion on UNESCO's World Heritage List in 1985. Of particular note are the geometrical and floral reliefs on the main door.
Vézelay Abbey (now known as Basilique Sainte-Marie-Madeleine) was a Benedictine and Cluniac monastery in Vézelay in the Yonne département in Burgundy, France. The Benedictine abbey church of Ste-Marie-Madeleine (or Basilica of St. Mary Magdalene), with its complicated program of imagery in sculpted capitals and portals, is one of the outstanding masterpieces of Burgundian Romanesque art and architecture, though much of its exterior sculpture was defaced during the French Revolution. The church and hill at Vézelay were added to the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites in 1979.
The Benedictine abbey of Vézelay was founded, as many abbeys were, on land that had been a late Roman villa, of Vercellus (Vercelle becoming Vézelay). The villa had passed into the hands of the Carolingians and devolved to a Carolingian count, Girart, of Roussillon. The two convents he founded there were looted and dispersed by Moorish raiding parties in the 8th century, and a hilltop convent was burnt by Norman raiders. In the 9th century, the abbey was refounded under the guidance of Badilo, who became an affiliate of the reformed Benedictine order of Cluny. Vézelay also stood at the beginning of one of the
Visoki Dečani (Serbian Cyrillic: Високи Дечани) is a major Serbian Orthodox Christian monastery located in Metohia (Kosovo), 12 km (7 mi) south of the town of Peć. The monastic katholikon is the largest medieval church in the Balkans containing the most extensive preserved fresco decoration.
The monastery was established in a chestnut grove by Serbian King Stefan Uroš III Dečanski in 1327. Its original founding charter is dated to 1330. The following year the king died and was buried at the monastery, which henceforth became his popular shrine. Indeed, the epithet Dečanski refers to the king's foundation of the monastery. The construction was continued by his son Emperor Stefan Uroš IV Dušan until 1335, but the wall-painting was not completed until 1350.
The monastic church, dedicated to Christ Pantocrator and built from blocks of red-purple, light-yellow and onyx marble, was constructed by builders working under a Franciscan friar, Vitus of Kotor. The church is distinguished by its imposing size and Romanesque and early Gothic structure and design. Apart from the extensive and well preserved fresco cycles the interior features the original 14th-century stone templon, the throne of
Adelsö is an island in the middle of Lake Mälaren in Sweden, near southern and northern Björkfjärden. The administrative center of the important Viking settlement Birka (on the neighbouring island Björkö) was situated at Hovgården on Adelsö.
The Adelsö landscape consists of pine-clad rocky hills and moraine ridges dotted with fields and deciduous trees, mainly oak. The highest spot on Adelsö is Kunsta Mountain, which is 53.2 m above sea level. The top of Kunsta has an outlook tower offering a great view of the middle of Lake Mälaren.
Adelsö has about 700 permanent residents, a number that has been quite stable throughout the centuries. Most working individuals commute to Stockholm, but there are also farmers and fishermen. During the summer months, the island is a popular destination for guests.
Transportation to Adelsö is very good. Buses (lines 311 and 312) run from the bus terminal at Brommaplan in the middle of Bromma, to Sjöängen on Munsö. From here, the Adelson Ferry, a vehicular cable ferry crosses to Adelsö. Bus 312 travels on the ferry and traverses the whole island. The ferry runs every half hour during the day and hourly during evenings and nights. The night ferry runs
Wooroonooran is a national park in Queensland (Australia), 1367 km northwest of Brisbane, between Innisfail and Cairns.
The park is one of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area series of national parks, and is a gazetted World Heritage site. Declared in 1988, the World Heritage area stretches from Townsville in the south to Cooktown in the north, and contains some of the oldest surviving rainforests in the world.
The national park covers most of Bellenden Ker Range and includes Queensland's two highest mountains, Mount Bartle Frere (1622 m) and Mount Bellenden Ker (1592 m). Walshs Pyramid at 922 m in height, is located just south of Gordonvale and is one of the highest free-standing natural pyramids in the world. It also includes the parts of Australia that on average receive the most rainfall each year.
The park has two sections: the Palmerston and the Josephine sections. Both the North and South branches of the Johnstone River flow through the Palmerston section.
The Josephine Falls visitor area was developed and opened to the public in the 1970s. The water in Josephine Creek originates from the slopes of Mount Bartle Frere and flows into the Russell River. A 600 m walking track
Haeinsa (해인사, 海印寺: Temple of the Ocean Mudra) is a head temple of the Jogye Order (대한불교조계종, 大韓佛敎 曹溪宗) of Korean Buddhism in the Gaya Mountains (가야산, 伽倻山), South Gyeongsang Province South Korea. Haeinsa is most notable for being the home of the Tripitaka Koreana, the whole of the Buddhist Scriptures carved onto 81,350 wooden printing blocks, which it has housed since 1398.
Haeinsa is one of the Three Jewel Temples of Korea, and represents Dharma or the Buddha’s teachings. It is still an active Seon (선, 禪) practice center in modern times, and was the home temple of the influential Rev. Seongcheol (성철, 性徹), who died in 1993.
The temple was first built in 802. Legend says that two Korean monks returned from China, Suneung and Ijeong, and healed King Aejang's (애장왕, 哀莊王) wife of her illness. In gratitude of the Buddha's mercy, the king ordered the construction of the temple. Another account, by Choe Chi-Won in 900 states that Suneung and his disciple Ijeong, gained the support of a queen dowager who converted to Buddhism and then helped to finance the construction of the temple.
The temple complex was renovated in the 10th century, 1488, 1622, and 1644. Hirang, the temple abbot enjoyed
The Palace of Tau (French: Palais du Tau) in Reims, France, was the palace of the Archbishop of Reims. It is associated with the Kings of France, whose coronation was held in the nearby cathedral of Notre-Dame de Reims.
A large Gallo-Roman villa still occupied the site of the palace in the 6th and 7th centuries, and later became a Carolingian palace. The first documented use of the name dates to 1131, and derives from the plan of the building, which resembles the letter Τ (tau, in the Greek alphabet). Most of the early building has disappeared: the oldest part remaining is the chapel, from 1207. The building was largely rebuilt in Gothic style between 1498 and 1509, and modified to its present Baroque appearance between 1671 and 1710 by Jules Hardouin-Mansart and Robert de Cotte. It was damaged by a fire on 19 September 1914, and not repaired until after the Second World War.
The Palace was the residence of the Kings of France before their coronation in Notre-Dame de Reims. The King was dressed for the coronation at the palace before proceeding to the cathedral; afterwards, a banquet was held at the palace. The first recorded coronation banquet was held at the palace in 990, and
The Pantanal is a tropical wetland. It is one of the world's largest wetlands of any kind. Most of it lies within the Brazilian state of Mato Grosso do Sul, but it extends into Mato Grosso and portions of Bolivia and Paraguay, sprawling over an area estimated at between 140,000 square kilometres (54,000 sq mi) and 195,000 square kilometres (75,000 sq mi). Various subregional ecosystems exist, each with distinct hydrological, geological and ecological characteristics; up to 12 of them have been defined (RADAMBRASIL 1982).
About 80% of the Pantanal floodplains are submerged during the rainy seasons, nurturing an astonishing biologically diverse collection of aquatic plants and helping support a dense array of animal species.
The name "Pantanal" comes from the Portuguese word pântano, meaning wetland, bog, swamp, quagmire or marsh. By comparison, the Brazilian highlands are locally referred to as the planalto, plateau or, literally, high plain.
The Pantanal is a huge, gently-sloped basin that receives runoff from the upland areas (the Planalto highlands) and slowly releases the water through the Paraguay River and tributaries. The formation is a result of the large, concave pre-Andean
The Rammelsberg is a mountain, 635 m high, on the northern edge of the Harz, south of the town of Goslar in the north German state of Lower Saxony. The mountain is the location of an important mine, the only mine which had been working continuously for over 1,000 years when it finally closed in 1988. Since 1992, the visitors' mine of Rammelsberg has become a UNESCO World heritage site.
According to legend, the mountain was named after a knight called "Ramm". Whilst out hunting the knight, who was a henchman of Emperor Otto the Great, tied his horse to a tree, in order to pursue some deer through almost impassable terrain. His charger impatiently pawed the ground with its hooves whilst waiting for his master to return and so exposed a vein of silver ore.
Unlike the mineral deposits of the Upper Harz, the ore deposits at the Rammelsberg were caused by the escape of hot, metal-bearing, thermal springs on the sea floor in the Devonian period. This formation is referred to as a sedimentary exhalative deposit. At the bottom of the Devonian sea, two large lenses of ore were formed that were later caught up in the folding of rocks during the Carboniferous period and so lie overturned at an
Sangay National Park (Spanish: Parque nacional Sangay) is a national park located in the Morona Santiago, Chimborazo and Tungurahua provinces of Ecuador. The park contains two active volcanoes (Tungurahua and Sangay) and ecosystems ranging from tropical rainforests to glaciers.
The park has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1983. In 1992, it was added to the List of World Heritage in Danger due to illegal poaching, extensive grazing, unplanned road construction and encroachment of the park's perimeter. It was removed from the UNESCO list of endangered sites in 2005.
The National Park is an important refuge for rare species of the Andes, like mountain tapirs and spectacled bears. Especially for the mountain tapir, the park is one of the most important strongholds. Typical species of the alpine and subalpine areas are mountain tapirs, pumas and Andean foxes. In the forests below live spectacled bears, giant otters, jaguars, ocelots, margays, Brazilian tapirs, white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus clavium), little red brocket deer and Northern Pudus. About 300-400 bird species inhabit the Park.
The Nanda Devi National Park is a national park situated around the peak of Nanda Devi, 7,817 m (25,646 ft) in the state of Uttarakhand in northern India that was established in 1982. Along with the adjoining Valley of Flowers National Park to the northwest, it was inscribed a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1988.
Nanda Devi National Park covers an area of 630.33 km (243.37 sq mi) and together with Valley of Flowers National Park is encompassed in the Nanda Devi Biosphere Reserve totaling a protected area of 2,236.74 km (863.61 sq mi), which is surrounded by a buffer zone of 5,148.57 km (1,987.87 sq mi). This Reserve is part of the UNESCO World Network of Biosphere Reserves since 2004.
The park encompasses the Nanda Devi Sanctuary, a glacial basin surrounded by a ring of peaks between 6,000 metres (19,700 ft) and 7,500 m (24,600 ft) high, and drained by the Rishi Ganga through the Rishi Ganga Gorge, a steep, almost impassable defile. The entire park lies at an elevation of more than 3,500 m (11,500 ft) above mean sea level.
The Sanctuary can be divided into two parts, Inner and Outer. Together, they are surrounded by the main Sanctuary Wall, which forms a roughly square outline,
Riomaggiore (Rimazùu in the local Ligurian language) is a village and comune in the province of La Spezia, situated in a small valley in the Liguria region of Italy. It is the first of the Cinque Terre one meets when travelling north from La Spezia.
The village, dating from the early thirteenth century, is known for its historic character and its wine, produced by the town's vineyards. Riomaggiore is in the Riviera di Levante region and has shoreline on the Mediterranean's Gulf of Genoa, with a small beach and a wharf framed by tower houses. Riomaggiore's main street is Via Colombo, where numerous restaurants, bars and shops can be found.
The Via dell'Amore is a path connecting Riomaggiore to its frazione Manarola, also part of the Cinque Terre.
Riomaggiore is the most southern village of the five Cinque Terre, all connected by trail. The water and mountainside have been declared national parks.
Riomaggiore inspired paintings by Telemaco Signorini (1835-1901), one of the artists of the Macchiaioli group.
Tournai (French pronunciation: [tuʁnɛ], in Dutch Doornik, in Latin: Tornacum) is a Walloon city and municipality of Belgium located 85 kilometres southwest of Brussels, on the river Scheldt, in the province of Hainaut.
Along with Tongeren, Tournai is the oldest city in Belgium and it has played an important role in the country's cultural history.
Tournai is located in the lowlands of Belgium, at the southern limit of the Flemish plain, in the basin of the river Escaut ("Schelde" in Dutch). Administratively, the town is part of the Province of Hainaut, itself part of Wallonia. It is also a municipality that is part of the French-speaking Community of Belgium. Tournai has its own arrondissements, both administrative and judicial.
Its area of 213.75 km² makes it the largest commune in size in Belgium; it is also the largest in population in Western Hainaut. The municipality of Tournai consists of the former municipalities of Ere, Saint-Maur, Orcq, Esplechin, Froyennes, Froidmont, Willemeau, Ramegnies-Chin, Templeuve, Chercq, Blandain, Hertain, Lamain, Marquain, Gaurain-Ramecroix, Havinnes, Beclers, Thimougies, Barry, Maulde, Vaulx, Vezon, Kain, Melles, Quartes, Rumillies,
The Rietveld Schröder House (Dutch: Rietveld Schröderhuis) (also known as the Schröder House) in Utrecht was built in 1924 by Dutch architect Gerrit Rietveld for Mrs. Truus Schröder-Schräder and her three children.
She commissioned the house to be designed preferably without walls. Rietveld worked side by side with Schröder-Schräder to create the house. He sketched the first possible design for the building; Schroder-Schrader was not pleased. She envisioned a house that was free from association and could create a connection between the inside and outside. The house is one of the best known examples of De Stijl-architecture and arguably the only true De Stijl building. Mrs. Schröder lived in the house until her death in 1985. The house was restored by Bertus Mulder and now is a museum open for visits. It is a listed monument since 1976 and UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2000.
The Rietveld Schröder House constitutes both inside and outside a radical break with all architecture before it. The two-story house is situated in Utrecht, at the end of a terrace, but it makes no attempt to relate to its neighbouring buildings. It faces a motorway built in the 1960s.
Inside there is no
Shirakami-Sanchi (白神山地, lit. white god mountain area) is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in northern Honshū, Japan. This mountainous, unspoiled expanse of virgin forest straddles both Akita and Aomori Prefectures. Of the entire 1,300 km², a tract covering 169.7 km² was included in the list of World Heritage Sites in 1993. Siebold's beech trees make up a large portion of the forest.
The Shirakami-Sanchi was one of the first sites entered on the World Heritage List in Japan, along with Yakushima, Himeji Castle, and Buddhist Monuments in the Hōryū-ji Area in 1993. The Shirakami-Sanchi is usually said to contain large areas of forest not covered by the World Heritage listing. However the level of preservation in these areas is not as high as in the central listed area. The World Heritage Site area has never been opened to human activity or trails other than mountain climbers' paths, and is planned to be protected in this state. Permission is needed from Forest Management to enter the heart of the Shirakami-Sanchi. Fishing requires permission from both the Fishing Cooperative and Forest Management.
The beech tree is usually unsuitable for cultivation of the Shiitake mushroom. Therefore
Kutná Hora (Czech pronunciation: [ˈkutnaː ˈɦora] ( listen); medieval Czech: Hory Kutné; German: Kuttenberg) is a city situated in the Central Bohemian Region of Bohemia, which is now part of the Czech Republic.
The town began in 1142 with the settlement of the first Cistercian monastery in Bohemia, Sedlec Monastery, brought from the Imperial immediate Cistercian Waldsassen Abbey. By 1260 German miners began to mine for silver in the mountain region, which they named Kuttenberg, and which was part of the monastery property. The name of the mountain is said to have derived from the monks' cowls (the Kutten) or from the word mining (kutání in old Czech). Under Abbot Heinrich Heidenreich the territory greatly advanced due to the silver mines which gained importance during the economic boom of the 13th century.
The earliest traces of silver have been found dating back to the 10th century, when Bohemia already had been in the crossroads of long-distance trade for many centuries. Silver dinars have been discovered belonging to the period between 982-995 in the settlement of Malín, which is now a part of Kutná Hora.
From the 13th to 16th centuries the city competed with Prague
Modena Cathedral is a Roman Catholic Romanesque church in Modena, Italy. It is the cathedral, or duomo in Italian, of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Modena-Nonantola. Consecrated in 1184, it is one of the most important Romanesque buildings in Europe and a World Heritage Site.
Two previous churches had been constructed on the site since the 5th century, but they had both been destroyed. Work on the modern Cathedral began in 1099, under the direction of the master builder Lanfranco, over the site of the sepulchre of Saint Geminianus, Modena's patron saint. The Saint's remains are still exhibited in the cathedral's crypt. The present cathedral was consecrated by Pope Lucius III on July 12, 1184.
After Lanfranco's work, the Cathedral was embellished by Anselmo da Campione and his heirs, the so-called "Campionese-masters". The current façade therefore exhibits different styles. The majestic rose-window was added by Anselmo in the 13th century, while the two lions supporting the entrance's columns are of Roman age, probably discovered while digging the foundations.
The façade has also notable reliefs by Wiligelmus, a contemporary of Lanfranco's; these include portraits of prophets
The Ring of Brodgar (or Brogar, or Ring o' Brodgar) is a Neolithic henge and stone circle on the Mainland, the largest island in Orkney, Scotland. It is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site known as the Heart of Neolithic Orkney
The Ring of Brodgar (or Brogar, or Ring o' Brodgar) is a Neolithic henge and stone circle in Orkney, Scotland. Most henges do not contain stone circles; Brodgar is a striking exception, ranking with Avebury (and to a lesser extent Stonehenge) among the greatest of such sites. The ring of stones stands on a small isthmus between the Lochs of Stenness and Harray. These are the northernmost examples of circle henges in Britain. Unlike similar structures such as Avebury, there are no obvious stones inside the circle, but since the interior of the circle has never been excavated by archaeologists, the possibility remains that wooden structures, for example, may be present. The site has resisted attempts at scientific dating and the monument's age remains uncertain. It is generally thought to have been erected between 2500 BC and 2000 BC, and was, therefore, the last of the great Neolithic monuments built on the Ness. A project called The Ring of Brodgar
Knowth ( /ˈnaʊθ/; Irish: Cnoghbha) is a Neolithic passage grave and an ancient monument of Brú na Bóinne in the valley of the River Boyne in Ireland.
Knowth is the largest of all passage graves situated within the Brú na Bóinne complex. The site consists of one large mound (known as Site 1) and 17 smaller satellite tombs. Essentially Knowth (Site 1) is a large mound (about 12 metres (40 ft) high and 67 metres (220 ft) in diameter, covering roughly a hectare) and contains two passages, placed along an east-west line. It is encircled by 127 kerbstones (three of which are missing and four of which are badly damaged). The large mound has been esitimated to date from between 2500 and 2000 BCE. The passages are independent of each other, and each leads to a burial chamber. The eastern passage leads to a cruciform chamber, not unlike that found at Newgrange. It contains three recesses and basin stones into which the cremated remains of the dead were placed.
The right-hand recess is larger and more elaborately decorated with megalithic art than the others, which is typical for Irish passage graves of this type. The reason for this is unknown. The western passage ends in an undifferentiated
Santiago de Compostela (Galician: [santiˈaɣo ðe komposˈtɛla], Spanish: [sanˈtjaɣo ðe komposˈtela]) is the capital of the autonomous community of Galicia in northwestern Spain.
The city has its origin in the shrine of Saint James the Great, now the city's cathedral, as destination of the Way of St. James, a leading Catholic pilgrimage route originated in the 9th century. In 1985 the city's Old Town was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Santiago is the local Galician evolution of Vulgar Latin Sanctu Iacobu "Saint James". According to legend, Compostela derives from the Latin Campus Stellae (i.e., "field of the star"); it seems unlikely however that this could yield the modern Compostela under normal evolution from Latin to Galician-Portuguese. Other etymologies derive the name from Latin compositum, local Vulgar Latin Composita Tella, meaning "burial ground"; or simply from Latin compositellam, meaning "the well-composed one". Other sites in Galicia share this toponym, akin to Compostilla in the province of León.
The cathedral borders the main plaza of the old and well-preserved city. Legend has it that the remains of the apostle James were brought to Galicia for burial. In
The Dresden Elbe Valley is a former World Heritage Site in Dresden, Germany. The valley, extending for some 20 kilometres and passing through the Dresden Basin and the city of Dresden, is one of two cultural landscapes along the Central European river Elbe. The value of this landscape lies in the fact that it includes the urban area as well as natural river banks and slopes.
Points of interest of the Elbe Valley include Pillnitz with its castle and old village as well as the village of Loschwitz with Schloss Albrechtsberg, works of engineering such as the Blue Wonder bridge, the Standseilbahn Dresden and the Schwebebahn Dresden, and the historic center with the buildings of Brühl's Terrace, Semperoper and Katholische Hofkirche (the Roman Catholic Church of the former court). Parts of the area such as Blasewitz are historic suburbs of the city, while there are also industrial districts.
Plans to build the four-lane Waldschlösschen Bridge across the valley proved controversial. In 2006, the UNESCO World Heritage Committee placed the Dresden Elbe Valley on its list of World Heritage in Danger and threatened to remove it from the World Heritage List. According to the Committee's
The Elephanta Caves (Marathi: घारापुरीची लेणी, Gharapurichya Lenee) are a network of sculpted caves located on Elephanta Island, or Gharapuri (literally "the city of caves") in Mumbai Harbour, 10 kilometres (6.2 mi) to the east of the city of Mumbai in the Indian state of Maharashtra. The island, located on an arm of the Arabian Sea, consists of two groups of caves—the first is a large group of five Hindu caves, the second, a smaller group of two Buddhist caves. The Hindu caves contain rock cut stone sculptures, representing the Shaiva Hindu sect, dedicated to the god Shiva.
The rock cut architecture of the caves has been dated to between the 5th and 8th centuries, although the identity of the original builders is still a subject of debate. The caves are hewn from solid basalt rock. All the caves were also originally painted in the past, but now only traces remain.
The island was called Gharapuri and was a Hindu place of worship until Portuguese rule began in 1534. The Portuguese called the island Elephanta on seeing its huge gigantic statue of an Elephant at the entrance. The Statue is now placed in the garden outside the Bhau Daji Lad (erstwhile Victoria & Albert) Museum at the
The Galápago Islands (official name: Archipiélago de Colón ; other Spanish names: Islas de Colón or Islas Galápagos) are an archipelago of volcanic islands distributed around the equator in the Pacific Ocean, 972 km (525 nmi) west of continental Ecuador, of which they are a part.
The Galápagos Islands and its surrounding waters form an Ecuadorian province, a national park, and a biological marine reserve. The principal language on the islands is Spanish. The islands have a population of slightly over 25,000.
The islands are geologically young and famed for their vast number of endemic species, which were studied by Charles Darwin during the voyage of the Beagle. His observations and collections contributed to the inception of Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection.
The first crude navigation chart of the islands was made by the buccaneer Ambrose Cowley in 1684. He named the individual islands after some of his fellow pirates or after the British noblemen who helped the privateer's cause. More recently, the Ecuadorian government gave most of the islands Spanish names. While the Spanish names are official, many users (especially ecological researchers) continue to use the
Mycenae (Greek Μυκῆναι Mykēnai or Μυκήνη Mykēnē) is an archaeological site in Greece, located about 90 km southwest of Athens, in the north-eastern Peloponnese. Argos is 11 km to the south; Corinth, 48 km to the north. From the hill on which the palace was located one can see across the Argolid to the Saronic Gulf.
In the second millennium BC Mycenae was one of the major centres of Greek civilization, a military stronghold which dominated much of southern Greece. The period of Greek history from about 1600 BC to about 1100 BC is called Mycenaean in reference to Mycenae.
Although the citadel was built by Greeks, the name is not thought to be Greek, but is rather one of the many pre-Greek place names inherited by the immigrant Hellenes. According to John Chadwick the name of Mycenae is of pre-Greek origin. The pre-Greek language remains unknown, but there is no evidence to rule out a member of the Indo-European superfamily. (See Pelasgian, Minyans)
Ancient Greek etymological speculation connected the name to the Greek word "μύκης" (mycēs), 'mushroom'. Thus, Pausanias ascribes the name to the legendary founder Megapenthes, who was said to have named it either after the cap（mycēs）of
The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, usually referred to as Kew Gardens, comprises 121 hectares of gardens and botanical glasshouses between Richmond and Kew in southwest London, England. "The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew" and the brand name "Kew" are also used as umbrella terms for the institution that runs both the gardens at Kew and Wakehurst Place gardens in Sussex. The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, a non-departmental public body sponsored by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, is an internationally important botanical research and education institution with 700 staff and an income of £56 million for the year ended 31 March 2008, as well as a visitor attraction receiving almost two million visits in that year. Created in 1759, the gardens celebrated their 250th anniversary in 2009.
The director of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, is responsible for the world's largest collection of living plants. The organisation employs more than 650 scientists and other staff. The living collections include more than 30,000 different kinds of plants, while the herbarium, which is one of the largest in the world, has over seven million preserved plant specimens. The library contains
The Euphrasian Basilica (Croatian: Eufrazijeva bazilika, Italian: Basilica Eufrasiana) is a basilica in Poreč, Croatia. The episcopal complex, including, apart the basilica itself, a sacristy, a baptistery and the bell tower of the nearby archbishop's palace, is one of the best examples of early Byzantine architecture in the Mediterranean region.
The Euphrasian basilica has for the most part retained its original shape, but accidents, fires and earthquakes have altered a few details. Since it is the third church to be built on the same site, it conceals previous buildings, for example the great floor mosaic of the previous basilica from the 5th century. Because of its exceptional value, it has been inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List since 1997.
The earliest basilica was dedicated to Saint Maurus of Parentium and dates back to the second half of the 4th century. The floor mosaic from its oratory, originally part of a large Roman house, is still preserved in the church garden. This oratorium was already expanded in the same century into a church composed of a nave and one aisle (basilicae geminae). The fish (symbol of Christ) on the floor mosaic dates from this period. Coins
The Jesuit Block and Estancias of Córdoba (Spanish: Manzana Jesuítica y Estancias de Córdoba) are a former Jesuit reduction built by missionaries in the province of Córdoba, Argentina, named a World Heritage Site in 2000.
The Manzana Jesuítica contains the University of Córdoba, one of the oldest in South America, the Monserrat Secondary School, a church, and residence buildings. To maintain such a project, the Jesuits operated six Estancias (residences) around the province of Córdoba, named Caroya, Jesús María, Santa Catalina, Alta Gracia, Candelaria and San Ignacio.
The farm and the complex, started in 1615, had to be left by the Jesuits, following the 1767 decree by King Charles III of Spain that expelled them from the continent. They were then run by the Franciscans until 1853, when the Jesuits returned to The Americas. Nevertheless, the university and the high-school were nationalized a year later.
Each Estancia has its own church and set of buildings, around which towns grew, such as Alta Gracia, the closest to the Block. The Estancia San Ignacio no longer exists. The Jesuit Block and the Estancias can be visited by tourists; the Road of the Jesuit Estancias has around 250
The Church of St Martin in Canterbury, England, situated slightly beyond the city centre, is England's oldest parish church in continuous use. Since 1668 St Martin's has been part of the benefice of St Martin & St Paul Canterbury. Both St Martin's and nearby St Paul's churches are used for weekly services. The current Rector of the Parish is the Rev'd Canon Noelle Hall.
St Martin's was the private chapel of Queen Bertha of Kent in the 6th century before Augustine arrived from Rome. Queen Bertha was a Christian Frankish princess who arrived in England with her Chaplain, Bishop Liudhard. King Æthelberht of Kent, her husband, allowed her to continue to practise her religion in an existing church which the Venerable Bede says had been in use in the late Roman period but had fallen into disuse. There is a strong possibility that this church is St Martin's, especially since Bede names it.
Shortly before 1844, a hoard of gold coins was found in the churchyard, one of which is the Liudhard medalet, which bears an image of a diademed figure with a legend referring to Liudhard.
Local finds prove that Christianity did exist in this area of the city at the time, and the church contains many
Willemstad (Dutch pronunciation: [ˈʋɪ.ləm.ˌstɑt]) is the capital city of Curaçao, an island in the southern Caribbean Sea that forms a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. Formerly the capital of the Netherlands Antilles prior to its dissolution in 2010, it has an estimated population of 140,000. The historic centre of the city consists of two quarters: Punda and Otrobanda. They are separated by the Sint Anna Bay, an inlet that leads into the large natural harbour called the Schottegat.
Punda was established in 1634, when the Dutch captured the island from Spain. The original name of Punda was de punt in Dutch. Otrobanda, which was founded in 1707, is the newer section of the city and is considered to be the cultural center of Willemstad. Its name originated from the Papiamentu otro banda, which means "the other side." Punda and Otrobanda are connected by Queen Emma Bridge, a long bridge of boats. Although still in use, these days most road traffic now uses the Queen Juliana Bridge built in 1967 (rebuilt 1974) which arches high over the bay further inland. Nearby is also the now non-functioning Queen Wilhelmina Bridge draw bridge.
The city center of Willemstad
Mestia (Georgian: მესტია) is a highland small town (daba) in northwest Georgia, at an elevation of 1,500 meters in the Caucasus Mountains.
According to the current administrative subdivision of Georgia, Mestia is located in the Samegrelo-Zemo Svaneti region (mkhare), some 128 km northeast of the regional capital of Zugdidi. Mestia and the adjoining 132 villages form Mestia District (raioni). Its area is 3,044 km²; population – 14,248 (2,600 in the town itself; 2002 Georgia census). The population is mostly Svans, a cultural and linguistic subgroup of the Georgians. In Mestia is Queen Tamar Airport since 2010 and the airport is operated by the state-owned company United Airports Georgia.
Historically and ethnographically, Mestia has always been regarded a chief community of Zemo, or Upper Svaneti province. It was formerly known as Seti (სეთი). Despite its small size, the townlet was an important centre of Georgian culture for centuries and contains a number of medieval monuments - churches and forts - included in a list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. In 1968, it was granted a status of a townlet (Georgian: daba).
The townlet is dominated by stone defensive towers of a type seen in
Dobšinská Ice Cave or Dobšinská ľadová jaskyňa (in Slovak) is an ice cave in Slovakia, near the mining town of Dobšiná in the Slovak Paradise. Since 2000 it is included in the UNESCO World Heritage list as a part of Caves of Aggtelek Karst and Slovak Karst site.
Famous visitors to the ice cave have been Prince August von Sachsen Gotha and his wife (1872), Ferdinand de Lesseps (constructor of the Suez Channel) and a party of French writers (1884), the Bulgarian czar Ferdinand I (1890) and the polar explorer Fridtjof Nansen (1900).
The cave was discovered on 15 June 1870 by a royal mining engineer Eugen Ruffinyi, accompanied by G. Lang and Andrej Mega, though the entrance was known from time immemorial by shepherds and hunters as Studená diera (Cold Hole). The cave was opened to the public one year after its discovery. In 1887, it was the first electrically lit cave in Europe.
At about this time 7,171 square metres of the cave's known area of 8,874 square metres were reported covered with ice. The total ice volume was estimated at 125,000 cubic metres, which makes it one of the most important ice caves in the world. The thickness of the ice reaches up to 26.5 m.
The cave floor
Troy (Ancient Greek: Ἴλιον, Ilion, or Ἴλιος, Ilios; and Τροία, Troia; Latin: Trōia and Īlium; Hittite: Wilusa or Truwisa; Turkish: Truva) was a city, both factual and legendary, in northwest Anatolia in what is now Turkey, south of the southwest end of the Dardanelles / Hellespont and northwest of Mount Ida. It is best known for being the setting of the Trojan War described in the Greek Epic Cycle and especially in the Iliad, one of the two epic poems attributed to Homer. Metrical evidence from the Iliad and the Odyssey seems to show that the name Ἴλιον (Ilion) formerly began with a digamma: Ϝίλιον (Wilion). This was later supported by the Hittite form Wilusa.
A new city called Ilium was founded on the site in the reign of the Roman Emperor Augustus. It flourished until the establishment of Constantinople and declined gradually during the Byzantine era.
In 1865, English archaeologist Frank Calvert excavated trial trenches in a field he had bought from a local farmer at Hisarlık, and in 1868, Heinrich Schliemann, wealthy German businessman and archaeologist, also began excavating in the area after a chance meeting with Calvert in Çanakkale. These excavations revealed several cities
The Willandra Lakes Region is a World Heritage Site that covers 2,400 square kilometres in south-western New South Wales, Australia.
The Region contains important natural and cultural features including exceptional examples of past human civilization including the world's oldest cremation site. A small section of the region is protected by the Mungo National Park.
The Willandra Lakes Region was added to the Australian National Heritage List in May 2007.
Agrigento listen (help·info) (Sicilian: Girgenti), is a city on the southern coast of Sicily, Italy, and capital of the province of Agrigento. It is renowned as the site of the ancient Greek city of Akragas (also known as Acragas (Ἀκράγας) in Greek, Agrigentum in Latin and Kirkent or Jirjent in Arabic), one of the leading cities of Magna Graecia during the golden age of Ancient Greece.
Agrigento was founded on a plateau overlooking the sea, with two nearby rivers, the Hypsas and the Akragas, and a ridge to the north offering a degree of natural fortification. Its establishment took place around 582-580 BC and is attributed to Greek colonists from Gela, who named it Akragas.
Akragas grew rapidly, becoming one of the richest and most famous of the Greek colonies of Magna Graecia. It came to prominence under the 6th-century tyrants Phalaris and Theron, and became a democracy after the overthrow of Theron's son Thrasydaeus. Although the city remained neutral in the conflict between Athens and Syracuse, its democracy was overthrown when the city was sacked by the Carthaginians in 406 BC. Akragas never fully recovered its former status, though it revived to some extent under Timoleon in
Brasília (Portuguese pronunciation: [ bɾɐˈziʎɐ] nationwide, in both colloquial and educated speech) is the federal capital of Brazil and the seat of government of the Federal District. The name is commonly spelled Brasilia in English. The city is located in the Federal District, and is in the Central-West region of the country, along a plateau known as Planalto Central. It has a population of about 2,562,963 (3,716,996 in the metropolitan area) as of the 2008 IBGE estimate, making it the fourth largest city in Brazil. However, as a metropolitan area, it ranks lower at sixth. It is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Brasilia is the largest city in the world that did not exist at the beginning of the 20th century.
Brasília has the 5th GDP among Latin American cities, and the 3rd in Brazil. Its GDP per capita is by far the highest among the larger Latin American cities, at a high - for Latin American standards - average of around USD$25,500.00 (almost three times the Brazilian national average).
As the national capital, Brasília is the seat of all three branches of the Brazilian government. The city also hosts the headquarters of many Brazilian companies. Planning policies such
Cáceres (pronounced: [ˈkaθeɾes]) is the capital of the same name province, in the autonomous community of Extremadura, Spain. As of 2009, its population was 91,131 inhabitants. The municipio has a land area of 1,750.33 km², and is the second largest in geographical extension in Spain.
There have been settlements near Cáceres since prehistoric times. Evidence of this can be found in the caves of Maltravieso and El Conejar. The city was founded by the Romans in 25 BC.
The old town (Ciudad Monumental) still has its ancient walls; this part of town is also well known for its multitude of storks' nests. The walls contain a medieval town setting with no outward signs of modernity, which is why many films have been shot there. The Universidad de Extremadura, and two astronomical observatories are situated in Cáceres. The city is also a seat of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Coria-Cáceres.
Cáceres was declared a World Heritage City by UNESCO in 1986 because of the city's blend of Roman, Moorish, Northern Gothic and Italian Renaissance architecture. Thirty towers from the Islamic period still stand in Cáceres, of which the Torre del Bujaco is the most famous.
The city of Cáceres is located
Chogha Zanbil (Persian: چغازنبيل); Elamite: Dur Untash) is an ancient Elamite complex in the Khuzestan province of Iran. Chogha in Bakhtiari means hill. It is one of the few existent ziggurats outside of Mesopotamia. It lies approximately 42 km (26 mi) south-southwest of Dezfoul, 30 km (19 mi) west of Susa and 80 km (50 mi) north of Ahvaz.
Choga Zambil means 'basket mound.' It was built about 1250 BC by the king Untash-Napirisha, mainly to honor the great god Inshushinak. Its original name was Dur Untash, which means 'town of Untash', but it is unlikely that many people, besides priests and servants, ever lived there. The complex is protected by three concentric walls which define the main areas of the 'town'. The inner area is wholly taken up with a great ziggurat dedicated to the main god, which was built over an earlier square temple with storage rooms also built by Untash-Napirisha. The middle area holds eleven temples for lesser gods. It is believed that twenty-two temples were originally planned, but the king died before they could be finished, and his successors discontinued the building work. In the outer area are royal palaces, a funerary palace containing five
Cyrene /saɪˈriːniː/ (Greek: Κυρήνη, Kyrēnē) was an ancient Greek colony and then a Roman city in present-day Shahhat, Libya, the oldest and most important of the five Greek cities in the region. It gave eastern Libya the classical name Cyrenaica that it has retained to modern times.
Cyrene lies in a lush valley in the Jebel Akhdar uplands. The city was named after a spring, Kyre, which the Greeks consecrated to Apollo. It was also the seat of the Cyrenaics, a famous school of philosophy in the 3rd century BC, founded by Aristippus, a disciple of Socrates. It has been nicknamed then as "Athens of Africa"
Cyrene was founded in 630 BC as a settlement of Greeks from the Greek island of Thera (Santorini), traditionally led by Battus I, at a site ten miles from its associated port, Apollonia (Marsa Sousa). Traditional details concerning the founding of the city are contained in Herodotus' Histories IV. Cyrene promptly became the chief town of ancient Libya and established commercial relations with all the Greek cities, reaching the height of its prosperity under its own kings in the 5th century BC. Soon after 460 BC it became a republic. In 413 BC, during the Peloponnesian War, Cyrene
The Mahabodhi Temple (महाबोधि मंदिर) (Literally: "Great Awakening Temple") is a Buddhist temple in Bodh Gaya, the location where Siddhartha Gautama, the Buddha, is said to have attained enlightenment. Bodh Gaya (located in Gaya district) is located about 96 km (60 mi) from Patna, Bihar state, India. Next to the temple, to its western side, is the holy Bodhi tree. In the Pali Canon, the site is called Bodhimanda, and the monastery there the Bodhimanda Vihara. The tallest tower is 55 metres (180 ft) tall. The construction uses the styles of Dravidian Architecture, as opposed to Nagara Temple styles.
The site of the Bodhi tree at Bodhigaya is, according to the Buddhist commentarial scriptures, the same for all Buddhas. According to the Jatakas, it forms the navel of the earth, and no other place can support the weight of the Buddha's attainment
According to Buddhist mythology, if no Bodhi tree grows at the site, the ground around the Bodhi tree is devoid of all plants for a distance of one royal karīsa and nothing can travel in the air immediately above it, not even Sakka.
Buddhist mythology also states that when the world is destroyed at the end of a kalpa, the Bodhimanda is the last
Ouro Preto (from Portuguese, Black Gold) is a city in the state of Minas Gerais, Brazil, a former colonial mining town located in the Serra do Espinhaço mountains and designated a World Heritage Site by UNESCO because of its outstanding Baroque architecture.
Population: Data from the 2010 Census (IBGE)
The city is linked by good roads to:
Bordering municipalities are:
Ouro Preto has a humid subtropical climate (Cwa, according to the Köppen climate classification), with warm and humid summers and mild, dry winters.
Founded at the end of the 17th century, Ouro Preto (meaning Black Gold) was originally called Vila Rica, or "rich village", the focal point of the gold rush and Brazil's golden age in the 18th century under Portuguese rule.
The city contains well-preserved Portuguese colonial architecture, with few signs of modern urban life. Modern construction must adhere to historical standards maintained by the city. 18th- and 19th-century churches decorated with gold and the sculptured works of Aleijadinho make Ouro Preto a prime tourist destination.
The tremendous wealth from gold mining in the 18th century created a city which attracted the intelligentsia of Europe. Philosophy and
Porto (Portuguese pronunciation: [ˈpoɾtu]), also known as Oporto in English, is the second-largest city in Portugal, after Lisbon, and one of the major urban areas in Southern Europe. Its administrative limits (an area of 41.66 km²/16 sq.mi) include a population of 237,584 (2011) inhabitants distributed within 15 civil parishes. The urban area of Porto, which extends beyond the administrative limits of the city, has a population of 1.3 million (2011) in an area of 389 km (150 sq mi), making it the second-largest urban area in Portugal. The Porto Metropolitan Area includes approximately 1.7 million people, and is recognized as a Gamma-level global city by the Globalization and World Cities (GaWC) Study Group, being one of the five cities in the peninsula with global city status (the others being Madrid, Barcelona, Lisbon and Valencia).
Located along the Douro river estuary in northern Portugal, Porto is one of the oldest European centres, and registered as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1996. Its settlement dates back many centuries, when it was an outpost of the Roman Empire. Its Latin name, Portus Cale, has been referred to as the origin for the name "Portugal", based on
The Tripitaka Koreana (lit. Goryeo Tripitaka) or Palman Daejanggyeong ("Eighty-Thousand Tripitaka") is a Korean collection of the Tripitaka (Buddhist scriptures, and the Sanskrit word for "three baskets"), carved onto 81,258 wooden printing blocks in the 13th century. It is the world's most comprehensive and oldest intact version of Buddhist canon in Hanja script, with no known errors or errata in the 52,382,960 characters which are organized in over 1496 titles and 6568 volumes. Each wood block measures 70 centimeters in width and 24 centimeters in length. The thickness of the blocks range from 2.6 to 4 centimeters and each weighs about three to four kilograms. The work is stored in Haeinsa, a Buddhist temple in South Gyeongsang province, in South Korea.
The name "Goryeo Tripitaka" comes from "Goryeo", the name of Korea from the 10th to the 14th centuries. It served as reference for the edition of the Chinese Buddhist canon.
The Tripitaka Koreana was first carved in 1087 during the Third Goryeo-Khitan War. The act of carving the woodblocks was considered to be a way of bringing about a change in fortune by invoking the Buddha's help.
The original set of woodblocks were destroyed
The Centennial Hall (German: Jahrhunderthalle, Polish: Hala Stulecia (formerly Hala Ludowa - People's Hall)) is a historic building in Wrocław, Poland. It was constructed according to the plans of architect Max Berg in 1911–1913, when the city was part of the German Empire. As an early landmark of reinforced concrete architecture, it was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2006.
The building is frequently visited by tourists and the local populace. It lies close to other popular tourist attractions, such as the Wrocław Zoo, the Japanese Garden, and the Pergola with its Multimedia Fountain.
It was in the Lower Silesian capital of Breslau on 10 March 1813 where King Frederick William III of Prussia called upon the Prussian and German people in his proclamation An Mein Volk to rise up against Napoleon's occupation. In October of that year, at the Battle of Leipzig, Napoleon was defeated.
The opening of the hall was part of the celebration commemorating the 100th anniversary of the battle, hence the name. Breslau's municipal authorities had vainly awaited state funding and ultimately had to defray the enormous costs out of their own pockets. The landscaping and buildings
The Monastery of Saint Ivan of Rila, better known as the Rila Monastery (Bulgarian: Рилски манастир, Rilski manastir) is the largest and most famous Eastern Orthodox monastery in Bulgaria. It is situated in the southwestern Rila Mountains, 117 km (73 mi) south of the capital Sofia in the deep valley of the Rilska River at an elevation of 1,147 m (3,763 ft) above sea level. The monastery is named after its founder, the hermit Ivan of Rila (876 - 946 AD).
Founded in the 10th century, the Rila Monastery is regarded as one of Bulgaria's most important cultural, historical and architectural monuments and is a key tourist attraction for both Bulgaria and Southern Europe. In 2008 alone, it attracted 900,000 visitors. The monastery is depicted on the reverse of the 1 lev banknote, issued in 1999.
It is traditionally thought that the monastery was founded by the hermit St. Ivan of Rila, whose name it bears, during the rule of Tsar Peter I (927-968). The hermit actually lived in a cave without any material possessions not far from the monastery's location, while the complex was built by his students, who came to the mountains to receive their education.
Ever since its creation, the Rila
Banská Štiavnica ( pronunciation (help·info); German: Schemnitz, Hungarian: Selmecbánya - often the short form is used: Selmec; Turkish: Şelmec Ban'a) is a town in central Slovakia, in the middle of an immense caldera created by the collapse of an ancient volcano. For its size, the caldera is known as Štiavnica Mountains. Banská Štiavnica has a population of more than 10,000. It is a completely preserved medieval town. Because of their historical value, the town and its surroundings were proclaimed by the UNESCO to be a World Heritage Site on December 11, 1993.
The fate of Banská Štiavnica has been closely linked to the exploitation of its abundant resources of silver ore. According to evidence from excavations, the site was settled during the Neolithic period.
The first mining settlement was founded by Celts in the 3rd century BC. It was probably occupied by the Celtic Cotini tribe. Roman authors mentioned mining activities of the Cotini, who had lived in present-day central Slovakia until they were deported to Pannonia within the Marcomannic Wars by Rome. The site was also settled by early Slavs and a Slavic fortified settlement was situated here in the 10th and 11th century. The
Independence Hall is the centerpiece of Independence National Historical Park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States, on Chestnut Street between 5th and 6th Streets. It is known primarily as the location where both the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution were debated and adopted.
The building was completed in 1753 as the colonial legislature (later Pennsylvania State House) for the Province of Pennsylvania. It became the principal meeting place of the Second Continental Congress from 1775 to 1783 and was the site of the Constitutional Convention in the summer of 1787. The building is part of Independence National Historical Park and is listed as a World Heritage Site.
By the spring of 1729 the citizens of Philadelphia were petitioning to be allowed to build a state house. Two thousand pounds were set aside for the endeavor. A committee was formed composed of Thomas Lawrence, Dr. John Kearsley, and Andrew Hamilton with the responsibility of selecting a site for construction, acquiring plans for the building, and contracting a company for the purpose of construction. Hamilton was, along with William Allen, named a trustee of the purchasing and
The Kadisha Valley (also known as Qadisha Valley, Wadi Qadisha, Ouadi Qadisha, or وادي قاديشا in Arabic) is a valley that lies within the Becharre and Zgharta Districts of the North Governorate of Lebanon. The valley is a deep gorge carved by the Kadisha River, also known as the Nahr Abu Ali when it reaches Tripoli. Kadisha means "Holy" in Aramaic, and the valley, sometimes called the Holy Valley, has sheltered Christian monastic communities for many centuries. The integrity of the Valley is at risk due to encroachment of human settlements, illegal building and inconsistent conservation activity. Although it is not yet on the UNESCO "in danger" list, there have been warnings that continued violations may lead to this step.
The long, deep Qadisha Valley is located at the foot of Mount al-Makmal in northern Lebanon. Through it the Holy River, Nahr Qadisha, runs for 35km from its source in a cave (grotto) a little way below the Forest of the Cedars of God. The sides of the valley are steep cliffs that contain many caves, often at more than 1000m and all difficult of access. The most scenic section of the valley stretches for approximately twenty kilometers between Bsharri (بشري), the
Manovo-Gounda St.Floris National Park is a national park and UNESCO World Heritage Site located in the Central African Republic prefecture Bamingui-Bangoran, near the Chad border. It was inscribed to the list of World Heritage Sites in 1988 as a result of the diversity of life present within it. Notable species include black rhinoceroses, elephants, cheetahs, leopards, red-fronted gazelles, and buffalo. But it is under threat due to its rare wildlife dying and animals species being wiped out. People are working on breeding programmes to revive the natural wildlife.
Modica (Sicilian: Muòrica, Greek: Μότουκα, Latin: Mutyca or Motyca) is a city and comune in the Province of Ragusa, Sicily, southern Italy. The city is situated in the Hyblaean Mountains and, along with Val di Noto, is part of UNESCO Heritage Sites in Italy.
According to Thucydides, the city was founded in 1360 BC or 1031 BC and was inhabited by the Sicels in the 7th century BC. It was probably a dependency of Syracuse. Modica was occupied by the Romans after the battle of the Egadi islands against the Carthaginians in the Punic Wars 241 BC, together with Syracuse and all of Sicily. Modica became one of the thirty-five decuman ("spontaneously submitted") cities of the island and was oppressed by the praetor Verres. It became an independent municipium, and apparently a place of some consequence. The city is also mentioned among the inland towns of the island both by Pliny and Ptolemy; and though its name is not found in the Itineraries, it is again mentioned by the Geographer of Ravenna. Silius Italicus also includes it in his list of Sicilian cities, and immediately associates it with Netum (now Noto Antico), with which it was clearly in the same neighborhood.
The southeast of
The New Town is a central area of Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland. It is often considered to be a masterpiece of city planning, and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It was built in stages between 1765 and around 1850, and retains much of the original neo-classical and Georgian period architecture.
Its most famous street is Princes Street, facing Edinburgh Castle and the Old Town across the geographical depression of the former Nor Loch. The Old and New Towns were together designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995.
Original plans to create a New Town in Edinburgh date back to a general concept considered by King James VII and II in the late 17th century.
The decision to construct a New Town was taken by the city fathers, after overcrowding inside the Old Town city walls reached breaking point and to prevent an exodus of wealthy citizens from the city to London. The Age of Enlightenment had arrived in Edinburgh, and the outdated city fabric did not suit the modern thinkers who lived there. Lord Provost George Drummond succeeded in extending the boundary of the Royal Burgh to encompass the fields to the north of the Nor Loch, the heavily polluted body of water which occupied
Sigiriya (Lion's rock, Sinhalese - සීගිරිය) is a town with a large stone and ancient rock fortress and palace ruin in the central Matale District of Central Province, Sri Lanka, surrounded by the remains of an extensive network of gardens, reservoirs, and other structures. A popular tourist destination, Sigiriya is also renowned for its ancient paintings (frescos), which are reminiscent of the Ajanta Caves of India. It is one of the eight World Heritage Sites of Sri Lanka.
Sigiriya may have been inhabited through prehistoric times. It was used as a rock-shelter mountain monastery from about the 5th century BC, with caves prepared and donated by devotees of the Buddhist Sangha. According to the chronicles as Mahavamsa the entire complex was built by King Kashyapa (477 – AD 495), and after the king's death, it was used as a Buddhist monastery until 14th century.
The Sigiri inscriptions were deciphered by the archaeologist Senarath Paranavithana in his renowned two-volume work, published by Cambridge, Sigiri Graffiti and also Story of Sigiriya.
Sigiriya is located in the Matale District in the Central Province of Sri Lanka. It is within the cultural triangle, which includes five of
Tongeren (Dutch pronunciation: [ˈtɔŋərə(n)], French: Tongres, German: Tongern) is a city and municipality located in the Belgian province of Limburg, in the southeastern corner of the Flemish region of Belgium. Tongeren is the oldest town in Belgium, as the only Roman administrative capital in Belgium. As a Roman city, it was inhabited by the Tungri, and known as Atuatuca Tungrorum, it was the administrative centre of the Civitas Tungrorum district. The city is a member of the Most Ancient European Towns Network.
The Romans referred to Tongeren as Aduatuca Tungrorum or Atuatuca Tongrorum, and it was the capital of the large Roman province of Civitas Tungrorum, an area which covered modern Belgian Limburg, and at least parts of all the areas around it. Before the Roman conquests, this area was inhabited by the Eburones. The Eburones were amongst the group of Belgic tribes known as the Germani cisrhenani. (Despite being known as the Germani, whether they spoke a Germanic language is debated, and the names of their tribes and their leaders were Celtic.)
Caesar referred to the fort of the Eburones as Aduatuca, and this has led to a widely accepted proposal that this can be equated to
Paris (/ˈpærɪs/; French: [paʁi] ( listen)) is the capital and largest city of France. It is situated on the river Seine, in northern France, at the heart of the Île-de-France region. The city of Paris, within its administrative limits (the 20 arrondissements) largely unchanged since 1860, has a population of about 2,300,000. Its metropolitan area is one of largest population centres in Europe, with more than 12 million inhabitants.
An important settlement for more than two millennia, Paris had become, by the 12th century, one of Europe's foremost centres of learning and the arts and the largest city in the Western world until the 18th century. Paris is today one of the world's leading business and cultural centres and its influences in politics, education, entertainment, media, science, and the arts all contribute to its status as one of the world's major global cities.
Paris and the Paris Region, with €572.4 billion in 2010, produce more than a quarter of the gross domestic product of France and is one of the largest city GDP in the world. Considered as green and highly liveable, the city and its region are the world's first tourism destination. They house four UNESCO World
Cuenca (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈkweŋka]) is a city in the autonomous community of Castile–La Mancha in central Spain. It is the capital of the province of Cuenca.
Cuenca is located across a steep spur, whose slopes descend into deep gorges of the Júcar and Huécar rivers. It is divided into two separate settlements: the "new" city is situated south-west to the old one, which is divided by the Huécar course.
The climate of Cuenca is the typical continental Mediterranean of Spain's "Meseta" (inner plateau). Winters are relatively cold, but summers are quite hot. Spring and autumn seasons are short, with pleasant temperatures during the day but with rather cold nights due to its altitude from 956 m above sea level up to 1000 m in the old town.
When the Iberian peninsula was part of the Roman Empire there were several important settlements in the province, such as Segóbriga, Ercávica and Gran Valeria. However, the place where Cuenca is located today was uninhabited at that time.
When the Muslim Arabs captured the area in 714, they soon realized the value of this strategic location and they built a fortress (called Kunka) between two gorges dug between the Júcar and Huécar rivers,
Durham Castle is a Norman castle in the city of Durham, England, which has been wholly occupied since 1840 by University College, Durham. It is open to the general public to visit, but only through guided tours, since it is in use as a working building and is home to over 100 students. The castle stands on top of a hill above the River Wear on Durham's peninsula, opposite Durham Cathedral (grid reference NZ274423).
The castle was originally built in the 11th century as a projection of the Norman king's power in the north of England, as the population of England in the north remained "wild and fickle" following the disruption of the Norman Conquest in 1066. It is an example of the early motte and bailey castles favoured by the Normans. The holder of the office of the Bishop of Durham was appointed by the King to exercise royal authority on his behalf, the Castle was his seat.
It remained the Bishop's palace for the Bishops of Durham until the Bishops made Auckland Castle their primary residence and the castle was converted into a college.
The castle has a large Great Hall, created by Bishop Antony Bek in the early 14th century. It was the largest Great Hall in Britain until Bishop
Nesebar (Bulgarian: Несебър, pronounced [nɛˈsɛbɐr], also transcribed as Nessebar or Nesebur; ancient name: Menebria and Mesembria, Μεσημβρία in Greek) is an ancient town and one of the major seaside resorts on the Bulgarian Black Sea Coast, located in Burgas Province. It is the administrative centre of the homonymous Nesebar Municipality. Often referred to as the "Pearl of the Black Sea" and "Bulgaria's Dubrovnik", Nesebar is a rich city-museum defined by more than three millennia of ever-changing history.
It is a one of the most prominent tourist destinations and seaports on the Black Sea, in what has become a popular area with several large resorts—the largest, Sunny Beach, is situated immediately to the north of Nesebar.
Nesebar has on several occasions found itself on the frontier of a threatened empire, and as such it is a town with a rich history. The ancient part of the town is situated on a peninsula (previously an island) connected to the mainland by a narrow man-made isthmus, and it bears evidence of occupation by a variety of different civilisations over the course of its existence. Its abundance of historic buildings prompted UNESCO to include Nesebar in its list of
Quebec (/kwɪˈbɛk/ or /kəˈbɛk/; French: Québec [kebɛk] ( listen)), also Québec, Quebec City or Québec City (French: Ville de Québec) is the capital of the Canadian province of Quebec. As of 2011, the city has a population of 516,622, and the metropolitan area has a population of 765,706, making it the second most populous city in Quebec after Montreal, which is about 233 kilometres (145 mi) to the southwest.
The narrowing of the Saint Lawrence River proximate to the city's promontory, Cap-Diamant (Cape Diamond), and Lévis, on the opposite bank, provided the name given to the city, Kébec, an Algonquin word meaning "where the river narrows". Founded in 1608 by Samuel de Champlain, Quebec City is one of the oldest cities in North America. The ramparts surrounding Old Quebec (Vieux-Québec) are the only remaining fortified city walls that still exist in the Americas north of Mexico, and were declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1985 as the 'Historic District of Old Québec'.
According to the federal and provincial governments, Québec is the city's official name in both French and English, although Quebec City (or its French equivalent, Ville de Québec) is commonly used,
Vernazza (Latin: Vulnetia) is a town and comune located in the province of La Spezia, Liguria, northwestern Italy. It is one of the five towns that make up the Cinque Terre region. Vernazza is the fourth town heading north, has no car traffic and remains one of the truest "fishing villages" on the Italian Riviera.
Vernazza's name is derived from the Latin adjective verna meaning "native" and the aptly named indigenous wine, "vernaccia" ("local" or "ours"), helped give birth to the village's moniker.
First records recognizing Vernazza as a fortified town date back to the year 1080. Referred to as an active maritime base of the Obertenghi, a family of Italian nobility, it was a likely point of departure for naval forces in defence of pirates.
Over the next two centuries Vernazza was vital in Genova's conquest of Liguria, providing port, fleet and soldiers. In 1209, the approximately 90 most powerful families of Vernazza pledged their allegiance to the republic of Genova.
The first documented presence of a Church dates back to 1251, with the parish of San Pietro sited in 1267. Reference to the Church of Santa Margherita d'Antiochia of Vernazza occurs in 1318. Some scholars are of the
The Bhimbetka rock shelters (Devanagari: भीमबेटका पाषाण आश्रय) are an archaeological World Heritage site located in Raisen District in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh. The Bhimbetka shelters exhibit the earliest traces of human life in India and deliver traces of dance from prehistoric times; a number of analyses suggest that at least some of these shelters were inhabited by hominids like homo erectus more than 100,000 years ago. Some of the Stone Age rock paintings found among the Bhimbetka rock shelters are approximately 30,000 years old (Paleolithic Age).
The name Bhimbetka is associated with Bhima, a hero-deity renowned for his immense strength, from the epic Mahabharata. The word Bhimbetka is said to derive from Bhimbaithka, meaning "sitting place of Bhima".
The Rock Shelters of Bhimbetaka (or Bhim Baithaka) lie in the Raisen District of Madhya Pradesh, 45 km south of Bhopal at the southern edge of the Vindhyachal hills. South of these rock shelters are successive ranges of the Satpura hills.
The entire area is covered by thick vegetation, has abundant natural resources in its perennial water supplies, natural shelters, rich forest flora and fauna, and bears a significant
El Fuerte de Samaipata (Fort Samaipata), also known simply as 'El Fuerte', is an archaeological site and UNESCO World Heritage Site located in the Santa Cruz Department, Florida Province, Bolivia. It is situated in the eastern foothills of the Bolivian Andes, and is a popular tourist destination for Bolivians and foreigners alike. It is served by the nearby town of Samaipata.
It is not actually a military fortification but it is generally considered a pre-Columbian religious site, built by the Chané people, a pre-Inca culture of Arawak origin. There are also ruins of an Inca city built near the temple; the city was built during the Inca expansion to the southeast. Both Incas and Chanes suffered several raids from Guarani warriors that invaded the region from time to time. Eventually, the Guarani warriors conquered the plains and valleys of Santa Cruz and destroyed Samaipata. The Guaranis dominated the region well into the Spanish colonial period.
The Spaniards also built a settlement near the temple and there are remains of buildings of typical Arab Andalusian architecture. The Spaniards abandoned the settlement and moved to the nearby valley were the town of Samaipata is currently
Guimarães (Portuguese pronunciation: [ɡimɐˈɾɐ̃jʃ]) is a northern Portuguese city located in the district of Braga, in the Ave Subregion (one of the more industrialized subregions of the country), with a population of 52 181 inhabitants, distributed throughout 20 parishes (freguesias in Portuguese), in an urban area of 23,5 km² with a population density of 2 223,9/km².
It is the seat of a municipality with an area of 241,05 km² and 162 636 inhabitants (2008), divided in 69 parishes. The municipality is bordered to the north by the municipality of Póvoa de Lanhoso, to the east by Fafe, to the south by Felgueiras, Vizela and Santo Tirso, to the west by Vila Nova de Famalicão and the northwest by Braga.
It is an historical city that had an important role in the formation of Portugal and it was settled in the 9th century, at which time it was called Vimaranes. This denomination might have had its origin in the warrior Vímara Peres, when he chose this area as the main government seat for the County of Portugal which he conquered for the Kingdom of Galicia.
Guimarães is one of the country's most important historical cities. Its historical center is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, making it
Liverpool ( /ˈlɪvərpuːl/) is a city and metropolitan borough of Merseyside, England, United Kingdom along the eastern side of the Mersey Estuary. It was founded as a borough in 1207 and was granted city status in 1880. It is the fourth most populous British city, and third most populous in England, with a 2011 population of 466,400 and is at the centre of a wider urban area, the Liverpool City Region, which has a population of around 2 million people.
Historically a part of Lancashire, the urbanisation and expansion of Liverpool were both largely brought about by the city's status as a major port. By the 18th century, trade from the West Indies, Ireland and mainland Europe coupled with close links with the Atlantic Slave Trade furthered the economic expansion of Liverpool. By the early 19th century, 40% of the world's trade passed through Liverpool's docks, contributing to Liverpool's rise as a major city. Liverpool is also well known for its inventions and innovations, particularly in terms of infrastructure, transportation and general construction. Railways, ferries and the skyscraper were all pioneered in the city.
Inhabitants of Liverpool are referred to as Liverpudlians but
Machu Picchu (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈmatʃu ˈpiktʃu], Quechua: Machu Picchu [ˈmɑtʃu ˈpixtʃu], "Old Peak") is a pre-Columbian 15th-century Inca site located 2,430 metres (7,970 ft) above sea level. Machu Picchu is located in the Cusco Region of Peru, South America. It is situated on a mountain ridge above the Urubamba Valley in Peru, which is 80 kilometres (50 mi) northwest of Cusco and through which the Urubamba River flows. Most archaeologists believe that Machu Picchu was built as an estate for the Inca emperor Pachacuti (1438–1472). Often referred to as the "City of the Incas", it is perhaps the most familiar icon of the Inca World.
The Incas started building the "estate" around 1400, but abandoned it as an official site for the Inca rulers a century later at the time of the Spanish Conquest. Although known locally, it was unknown to the outside world before being brought to international attention in 1911 by the American historian Hiram Bingham. Since then, Machu Picchu has become an important tourist attraction. Most of the outlying buildings have been reconstructed in order to give tourists a better idea of what the structures originally looked like. By 1976, thirty percent
Macquarie Island (or Macca) lies in the southwest corner of the Pacific Ocean, about half-way between New Zealand and Antarctica, at 54°30S, 158°57E. Politically, it is part of Tasmania, Australia since 1900 and became a Tasmanian State Reserve in 1978. In 1997 it became a World Heritage Site. It was a part of Esperance Municipality until 1993, when the municipality was merged with other municipalities to Huon Valley. The island is home to the entire Royal Penguin population on earth during their annual nesting season. Ecologically, it is part of the Antipodes Subantarctic Islands tundra ecoregion.
Since 1948 the Australian Antarctic Division (AAD) has maintained a permanent base, the Macquarie Island Station, on the isthmus at the northern end of the island at the foot of Wireless Hill. The population of the base, the island's only human inhabitants, usually varies from 20 to 40 people over the year.
The Australian/Briton Frederick Hasselborough discovered the uninhabited island accidentally on 11 July 1810 when looking for new sealing grounds. He claimed Macquarie Island for Britain and annexed it to the colony of New South Wales in 1810. The island took its name after Colonel
Mount Kōya (高野山, Kōya-san) is the name of mountains in Wakayama Prefecture to the south of Osaka. Also, Kōya-san is a modifying word for Kongōbu-ji (金剛峯寺). There is no one mountain officially called Kōya-san (高野山) in Japan.
First settled in 819 by the monk Kūkai, Mt. Kōya is primarily known as the world headquarters of the Kōyasan Shingon sect of Japanese Buddhism. Located in an 800 m high valley amid the eight peaks of the mountain (which was the reason this location was selected, in that the terrain is supposed to resemble a lotus plant), the original monastery has grown into the town of Kōya, featuring a university dedicated to religious studies and 120 temples, many of which offer lodging to pilgrims. The mountain is home to the following famous sites:
In 2004, UNESCO designated Mt. Kōya, along with two other locations on the Kii Peninsula, Yoshino and Omine; and Kumano Sanzan, as World Heritage Sites "Sacred Sites and Pilgrimage Routes in the Kii Mountain Range".
The mountain is accessible primarily by the Nankai Electric Railway from Namba Station (in Osaka) to Gokurakubashi Station at the base of the mountain. A cable car from Gokurakubashi then whisks visitors to the top in
Noordoostpolder ([ˈnɔːr.toʊ̯st.ˌpɔɫ.dər] ( listen), English: North-East Polder) is a municipality in the Flevoland province in the central Netherlands. Formerly, it was also called Urker Land. Emmeloord is the administrative center, located in the heart of the Noordoostpolder. The municipality has the largest land area in the Netherlands. (Lelystad and Terschelling both technically have more total area, but in both cases it is mostly water area.)
For history see Zuiderzee Works.
The population centres are Bant, Creil, Emmeloord, Ens, Espel, Kraggenburg, Luttelgeest, Marknesse, Nagele, Rutten, and Tollebeek.
The former island of Schokland, is now a museum.
The town and former island and of Urk, in the southwest, now surrounded by the Noordoostpolder, is a separate municipality.
There are no railway stations on the Noordoostpolder, but the nearest stations are in Kampen, Steenwijk and Lelystad.
UNESCO World Heritage sites located in/near the Noordoostpolder:
The Srebarna Nature Reserve (Природен резерват Сребърна, Priroden rezervat Srebarna) is a nature reserve in northeastern Bulgaria (Southern Dobruja), near the village of the same name, 18 km west of Silistra and 2 km south of the Danube. It comprises Lake Srebarna and its surroundings and is located on the Via Pontica, a bird migration route between Europe and Africa.
The reserve embraces 6 km² of protected area and a buffer zone of 5.4 km². The lake's depth varies from 1 to 3 m. There is a museum constructed, where a collection of stuffed species typical for the reserve is arranged.
While Lake Srebarna was studied many times in the past by foreign biologists, the first Bulgarian scientist to take an interest in the area was Aleksi Petrov, who visited the reserve in 1911. In 1913, the whole of Southern Dobrudja was incorporated in Romania, but was returned to Bulgaria in 1940, when the area was visited once again by Petrov to examine the colonies of birds that nest there.
The area was proclaimed a nature reserve in 1948 and is a Ramsar site since 1975. The reserve was recognized as World Natural Heritage Site under the 1972 Convention for the Protection of the World Cultural and
The Hanseatic City of Lübeck (pronounced [ˈlyːbɛk] ( listen), Low German [ˈlyːbɛːk]) is the second-largest city in Schleswig-Holstein, in northern Germany, and one of the major ports of Germany. It was for several centuries the "capital" of the Hanseatic League ("Queen of the Hanse") and, because of its Brick Gothic architectural heritage, is listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. In 2005 it had a population of 213,983.
Situated on the river Trave, Lübeck is the largest German port on the Baltic Sea. The old part of the town is an island enclosed by the Trave. The Elbe–Lübeck Canal connects the Trave with the Elbe River. Another important river near the town centre is the Wakenitz. The Autobahn 1 connects Lübeck with Hamburg and Denmark (Vogelfluglinie). The borough of Travemünde is a sea resort and ferry port on the coast of the Baltic Sea. Its central station links Lübeck to a number of lines, notably the line to Hamburg.
The area around Lübeck was settled after the last Ice Age. Several Neolithic dolmens can be found in the area.
Around AD 700 Slavic peoples started coming into the eastern parts of Holstein which had previously been settled by Germanic inhabitants and were
Ōtsu (大津市, Ōtsu-shi) is the capital city of Shiga Prefecture, Japan. The city was founded on October 1, 1898. As of October 1, 2010, the city has an estimated population of 338,629 with an average age of 40.7 years (15.42% of whom are under 15 and 16.81% are over 65) and a population density of 905.28 persons per km². The total area is 374.06 km².
Ōtsu means "big port", because Ōtsu was an important port on Lake Biwa since ancient times. In the years 667 to 672, the Ōmi Ōtsu Palace was founded by Emperor Tenji. The Jinshin War devastated the Omi Otsu Palace, and Ōtsu was renamed Furutsu (古津, "old port"). A new capital, Heian-kyō, (now Kyoto) was established in the immediate neighborhood in 794, and Ōtsu was revived as an important traffic point and satellite town of the capital.
In Edo period, Ōtsu prospered as a port on Lake Biwa and a shukuba of the Tokaido (Ōtsu-juku). The Zeze Domain was based in Zeze, a neighboring castle town of Ōtsu-juku.
On 11 May 1891, the Ōtsu incident, a failed assassination attempt on Tsarevich Nicholas Alexandrovich of Russia (later Tsar Nicholas II), occurred.
Built during the 1890s and later expanded during the Taishō period, the Lake Biwa Canal
Bryggen (Norwegian for the Wharf), also known as Tyskebryggen (the German Wharf) is a series of Hanseatic commercial buildings lining the eastern side of the fjord coming into Bergen, Norway. Bryggen has since 1979 been on the UNESCO list for World Cultural Heritage sites. The name has the same origin as the Flemish city of Brugge.
The city of Bergen was founded in 1070. The area of the present Bryggen constitutes the oldest part of the city. Around 1360 a Kontor of the Hanseatic League was established there, now documented in a museum. As the town developed into an important trading centre, the wharfs were improved. The buildings of Bryggen were gradually taken over by the Hanseatic merchants. The warehouses were filled with goods, particularly fish from northern Norway, and cereal from Europe.
Throughout history, Bergen has experienced many fires, since, traditionally, most houses were made from wood. This was also the case for Bryggen, and as of today, around a quarter dates back to the time after 1702, when the older wharfside warehouses and administrative buildings burned down. The rest predominantly consists of younger structures, although there are some stone cellars that
Casa Batlló (Catalan pronunciation: [ˈkazə βəʎˈʎo]) is a building restored by Antoni Gaudí and Josep Maria Jujol, built in 1877 and remodelled in the years 1904–1906; located at 43, Passeig de Gràcia (passeig is Catalan for promenade or avenue), part of the Illa de la Discòrdia (the "Block of Discord") in the Eixample district of Barcelona, Spain. Gaudí's assistants Domènec Sugrañes i Gras, Josep Canaleta y Joan Rubió also contributed to the renovation project.
The local name for the building is Casa dels ossos (House of Bones), as it has a visceral, skeletal organic quality. It was originally designed for a middle-class family and situated in a prosperous district of Barcelona.
The building looks very remarkable — like everything Gaudí designed, only identifiable as Modernisme or Art Nouveau in the broadest sense. The ground floor, in particular, is rather astonishing with tracery, irregular oval windows and flowing sculpted stone work.
It seems that the goal of the designer was to avoid straight lines completely. Much of the façade is decorated with a mosaic made of broken ceramic tiles (trencadís) that starts in shades of golden orange moving into greenish blues. The roof is
The Mausoleum of Khawaja Ahmed Yasawi (Kazakh: Қожа Ахмет Яссауи кесенесі, Qoja Axmet Yassawï kesenesi) is an unfinished mausoleum in the city of Turkestan, in southern Kazakhstan. The structure was commissioned in 1389 by Timur, who ruled the area as part of the expansive Mongol Empire, to replace a smaller 12th-century mausoleum of the famous Turkic poet and Sufi mystic, Khoja Ahmed Yasawi (1093–1166). However, construction was halted with the death of Timur in 1405.
Despite its incomplete state, the mausoleum has survived as one of the best-preserved of all Timurid constructions. Its creation marked the beginning of the Timurid architectural style. The experimental spatial arrangements, innovative architectural solutions for vault and dome constructions, and ornamentations using glazed tiles made the structure the prototype for this distinctive art, which spread across the empire and beyond.
The religious structure continues to draw pilgrims from across Central Asia and has come to epitomize the Kazakh national identity. It has been protected as a national monument, while UNESCO recognized it as the country's first site of patrimony, declaring it a World Heritage Site in
Jalpan de Serra is a town and municipality located in the north of the state of Querétaro, Mexico. It is located in the heart of an important ecological zone called the Sierra Gorda. It is also the site two of five Franciscan missions, including the first one, to have been built in the mid 18th century, and declared a World Heritage Site in 2003. The municipality is also home to a small but important indigenous group called the Pame. However, the municipality has been losing population since the mid 20th century even though recent events such as the town being named a Pueblo Mágico have worked to create a tourism industry.
The town of Jalpan is the municipal seat, located 180 km from San Juan del Río on Federal Highway 120. This road then connects it to Xilitla in San Luis Potosí. It is also connected to Río Verde in SLP via interstate highway 69. Although officially classified as a city since 1904, the current population is only just under 9,000 people (2005). The main economic activities within the town proper are commerce, livestock production and agriculture.
The town is centered on its main square and one of the five Franciscan missions to be named a World Heritage Site in
Lednice (Czech pronunciation: [ˈlɛdɲɪtsɛ]; German: Eisgrub) is a village in South Moravia in the Czech Republic. In 1996 it was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List (together with the twin manor of Valtice) as "an exceptional example of the designed landscape that evolved in the Enlightenment and afterwards under the care of a single family." It contains a palace and the largest park in the country, which covers 200 km².
Since Lednice/Eisgrub first passed into the hands of the House of Liechtenstein in the mid-13th century, its fortunes had been tied inseparably to those of that noble family. The palace of Lednice began its life as a Renaissance villa; in the 17th century it became a summer residence of the ruling Princes of Liechtenstein. The estate house — designed and furbished by baroque architects Johann Bernhard Fischer von Erlach, Domenico Martinelli, and Anton Johan Ospel — proclaimed rural luxury on the grandest scale. In 1846-58 it was extensively rebuilt in a Neo-Gothic style under the supervision of Georg Wingelmüller.
The surrounding park is laid out in an English garden style and contains a range of Romantic follies by Joseph Hardtmuth, including the artificial
Ryōan-ji (Shinjitai: 竜安寺, Kyūjitai: 龍安寺, The Temple of the Dragon at Peace) is a Zen temple located in northwest Kyoto, Japan. It belongs to the Myōshin-ji school of the Rinzai branch of Zen Buddhism. The temple garden is considered to be one of the finest examples of a kare-sansui, a Japanese rock garden, or zen garden, in Japan. The temple and gardens are listed as one of the Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto, and as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The site of the temple was an estate of the Fujiwara family in the 11th century. The first temple, the Daiju-in, and garden were built in that century by Fujiwara Saneyoshi. In 1450, Hosokawa Katsumoto, another powerful warlord, acquired the land where the temple stood. He built his residence there founded a zen temple, Ryōan-ji, on the upper part of the territory of the old temple. During the Ōnin War between the clans, the temple was destroyed. Hosokawa Katsumoto died in 1473. In 1488, his son, Hosokawa Matsumoto, rebuilt the temple, and probably built the rock garden at the same time..
The temple served as a mausoleum for the late Hosokawa emperors. Their tombs are grouped together in what are today known as the "Seven Imperial
The Boyana Church (Bulgarian: Боянска църква, Boyanska tsarkva) is a medieval Bulgarian Orthodox church situated on the outskirts of Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria, in the Boyana quarter. The east wing of the two-storey church was originally constructed in the late 10th or early 11th century, then the central wing was added in the 13th century under the Second Bulgarian Empire, the whole building being finished with a further expansion to the west in the middle of the 19th century. The church owes its world fame mainly to its frescoes from 1259. They form a second layer over the paintings from earlier centuries and represent one of the most complete and well-preserved monuments of Eastern European mediaeval art. A total of 89 scenes with 240 human images are depicted on the walls of the church. The name of the painter is recently discovered during restoration. The inscription reads: "zograph Vassilii from the village Subonosha, Sersko and his apprentice Dimitar".
National History Museum director Bozhidar Dimitrov stated: "The renovation revealed a rare inscription under a layer of plaster on one of the church walls: 'I, Vasiliy' inscribed. We now know the painter with certainty.
Diamantina (Adamantine, Portuguese pronunciation: [dʒiamɐ̃'tʃinɐ]) is a Brazilian city in the state of Minas Gerais. Its estimated population in 2006 was 44,746 in a total area of 3,870 km².
Arraial do Tijuco (as Diamantina was first called) was built during the colonial era in the early 18th century. As its name suggests, Diamantina was a center of diamond mining in the 18th and 19th centuries. A well-preserved example of Brazilian Baroque architecture, Diamantina is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Other historical cities in Minas Gerais are Ouro Preto and Mariana.
Diamantina is a statistical micro-region that includes the following municipalities: Diamantina, Datas, Felício dos Santos, Gouveia, Presidente Kubitschek, São Gonçalo do Rio Preto, Senador Modestino Gonçalves, and Couto de Magalhães de Minas. The area of this region is 7,348 km² and in 2006 the population was 80,063 inhabitants. The population density (2000) was 11.2 inhab/km².
Diamantina is located 292 kilometers almost directly north of the state capital, Belo Horizonte in a mountainous area. The elevation of the municipal seat is 1,114 meters. The Jequitinhonha River, one of Brazil's most important rivers, flows to
Pienza, a town and comune in the province of Siena, in the Val d'Orcia in Tuscany (central Italy), between the towns of Montepulciano and Montalcino, is the "touchstone of Renaissance urbanism."
In 1996, UNESCO declared the town a World Heritage Site, and in 2004 the entire valley, the Val d'Orcia, was included on the list of UNESCO's World Cultural Landscapes.
Pienza was rebuilt from a village called Corsignano, which was the birthplace (1405) of Aeneas Silvius Piccolomini (Italian: Enea Silvio Piccolomini), a Renaissance humanist born into an exiled Sienese family, who later became Pope Pius II. Once he became Pope, Piccolomini had the entire village rebuilt as an ideal Renaissance town. Intended as a retreat from Rome, it represents the first application of humanist urban planning concepts, creating an impetus for planning that was adopted in other Italian towns and cities and eventually spread to other European centers.
The rebuilding was done by Florentine architect Bernardo Gambarelli (known as Bernardo Rossellino) who may have worked with the humanist and architect Leon Battista Alberti, though there are no documents to prove it for sure. Alberti was in the employ of the
Simien Mountains National Park is one of the national parks of Ethiopia. Located in the Semien (North) Gondar Zone of the Amhara Region, its territory covers the Simien Mountains and includes Ras Dashan, the highest point in Ethiopia.
It is home to a number of endangered species, including the Ethiopian wolf and the walia ibex, a wild goat found nowhere else in the world. The gelada baboon and the caracal, a cat, also occur within the Simien Mountains. More than 50 species of birds inhabit the park, including the impressive bearded vulture, or lammergeier, with its 10-foot (3m) wingspan.
The park is crossed by an unpaved road which runs from Debarq, where the administrative headquarters of the park is located, east through a number of villages to the Buahit Pass, where the road turns south to end at Mekane Berhan, 10 kilometers beyond the park boundary.
The park was established in 1969, having been set up by Clive Nicol, who wrote about his experiences in From the Roof of Africa (1971, ISBN 0 340 14755 5).
It was one of the first sites to be made a World Heritage Site by UNESCO (1978). However, due to serious population declines of some of its characteristic native species, in 1996
Joya de Cerén (Jewel of Cerén in the Spanish language) is an archaeological site in La Libertad Department, El Salvador, featuring a pre-Columbian Maya farming village preserved remarkably intact under layers of volcanic ash. It is often referred to as the "Pompeii of the Americas", in comparison to the famed Ancient Roman ruins.
A small farming community inhabited as early as 1200 BC, Cerén was on the southeast edge of the Maya cultural area. It was evacuated in AD 200 due to the eruption of the Ilopango volcano, and was repopulated no earlier than AD 400. It was, at the time of its final evacuation, a tributary to nearby San Andrés.
Around the year 590 another nearby volcano, Loma Caldera, erupted and buried the village under 14 layers of ash. The villagers were apparently able to flee in time – no bodies have been found – although they left behind utensils, ceramics, furniture, and even half-eaten food in their haste to escape. The site was remarkably well preserved due to the low temperature of ash and very fast ashfall, a 4 - 8 meter thick layer having blanketed the town in the space of a few hours.
The site was unwittingly discovered in 1976 by a bulldozer driver leveling
Manarola (Manaea in the local dialect) is a small town, a frazione of the comune (municipality) of Riomaggiore, in the province of La Spezia, Liguria, northern Italy. It is the second smallest of the famous Cinque Terre towns frequented by tourists.
Manarola may be the oldest of the towns in the Cinque Terre, with the cornerstone of the church, San Lorenzo, dating from 1338. The local dialect is Manarolese, which is marginally different from the dialects in the nearby area. The name "Manarola" is probably dialectical evolution of the Latin, "magna rota". In the Manarolese dialect this was changed to "magna roea" which means "large wheel", in reference to the mill wheel in the town.
Manarola's primary industries have traditionally been fishing and wine-making. The local wine, called Sciacchetrà, is especially renowned; references from Roman writings mention the high quality of the wine produced in the region. In recent years, Manarola and its neighboring towns have become popular tourist destinations, particularly in the summer months. Tourist attractions in the region include a famous walking trail between Manarola and Riomaggiore (called Via dell'Amore, "Love's Trail") and hiking
Enryaku-ji (延暦寺, Enryaku-ji) is a Tendai monastery located on Mount Hiei in Ōtsu, overlooking Kyoto. It was founded during the early Heian period. The temple complex was established by Saichō (767–822), also known as Dengyō Daishi, who introduced the Tendai sect of Mahayana Buddhism to Japan from China. Enryaku-ji is the headquarters of the Tendai sect and one of the most significant monasteries in Japanese history. As such, it is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site "Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto (Kyoto, Uji and Otsu Cities)". The founders of Jōdo-shū, Sōtō Zen, and Nichiren Buddhism all spent time at the monastery. Enryaku-ji is also the home of the "marathon monks."
With the support of Emperor Kammu, the Buddhist monk Saichō ordained a hundred disciples in 807. Maintaining a strict discipline on Mt. Hiei, his monks lived in seclusion for twelve years of study and meditation. After this period, the best students were retained in positions in the monastery and others graduated into positions in the government. At the peak of its power, Enryaku-ji was a huge complex of as many as 3,000 sub-temples and a powerful army of warrior monks (僧兵, sōhei). In the tenth century,
Jiuzhaigou Valley (simplified Chinese: 九寨沟; traditional Chinese: 九寨溝; pinyin: Jiǔzhàigōu; literally "Valley of Nine Villages"; Tibetan: གཟི་རྩ་སྡེ་དགུ།, Wylie: gzi-rtsa sde-dgu, ZYPY: Sirza Degu) is a nature reserve and national park located in northern Sichuan province of southwestern China.
Jiuzhaigou Valley is part of the Min Mountains on the edge of the Tibetan Plateau and stretches over 72,000 hectares (180,000 acres). It is known for its many multi-level waterfalls, colorful lakes, and snow-capped peaks. Its elevation ranges from 2,000 to 4,500 metres (6,600 to 14,800 ft).
Jiuzhaigou Valley was inscribed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site in 1992 and a World Biosphere Reserve in 1997. It belongs to the category V (Protected Landscape) in the IUCN system of protected area categorization.
Jiuzhaigou (literally "Nine Village Valley") takes its name from the nine Tibetan villages along its length.
The remote region was inhabited by various Tibetan and Qiang peoples for centuries. Until 1975 this inaccessible area was little known. Extensive logging took place until 1979, when the Chinese government banned such activity and made the area a national park in 1982. An Administration
The Metéora (Greek: Μετέωρα, "suspended rocks", "suspended in the air" or "in the heavens above" — etymologically similar to "Meteorite") is one of the largest and most important complexes of Eastern Orthodox monasteries in Greece, second only to Mount Athos. The six monasteries are built on natural sandstone rock pillars, at the northwestern edge of the Plain of Thessaly near the Pineios river and Pindus Mountains, in central Greece. The nearest town is Kalambaka. The Metéora is included on the UNESCO World Heritage List under criteria I, II, IV, V and VII.
The Theopetra caves 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) south of Meteora had inhabitants fifty millennia ago. The cave of Theopetra, Kalambaka, radiocarbon evidence for 50,000 years of human presence, Radiocarbon 43(2B): 1029-1048.
In the 9th century, an ascetic group of hermit monks moved up to the ancient pinnacles.
They were the first people to inhabit Metéora. They lived in hollows and fissures in the rock towers, some of which reach 1800 ft (550m) above the plain. This great height, combined with the sheerness of the cliff walls, kept away all but the most determined visitors. Initially the hermits led a life of solitude, meeting only
Nijō Castle (二条城, Nijō-jō) is a flatland castle located in Kyoto, Japan. The castle consists of two concentric rings of fortifications, the Ninomaru Palace, the ruins of the Honmaru Palace, various support buildings and several gardens. The surface area of the castle is 275,000 square meters, of which 8000 square meters is occupied by buildings.
In 1601, Tokugawa Ieyasu, the founder of the Tokugawa Shogunate, ordered all the feudal lords in Western Japan to contribute to the construction of Nijō Castle, which was completed during the reign of Tokugawa Iemitsu in 1626. Parts of Fushimi Castle, such as the main tower and the karamon, were moved here in 1625-26. It was built as the Kyoto residence of the Tokugawa Shoguns. The Tokugawa Shogunate used Edo as the capital city, but Kyoto continued to be the home of the Imperial Court. Kyoto Imperial Palace is located north-east of Nijo Castle.
The central keep, or donjon, was struck by lightning and burned to the ground in 1750.
In 1788, the Inner Palace was destroyed by a city-wide fire. The site remained empty until it was replaced by a prince's residence transferred from the Kyoto Imperial Palace in 1893.
In 1867, the Ninomaru Palace
The Petit Trianon (French pronunciation: [pəti tʁijanɔ̃]) is a small château located on the grounds of the Palace of Versailles in Versailles, France.
It was designed by Ange-Jacques Gabriel by the order of Louis XV for his long-term mistress, Madame de Pompadour, and was constructed between 1762 and 1768. But Madame de Pompadour died four years before its completion, and it was subsequently occupied by her successor, Madame du Barry. Upon his accession to the throne in 1774, the 20-year-old Louis XVI gave the château and its surrounding park to his 19-year-old Queen Marie Antoinette for her exclusive use and enjoyment. Marie longed to escape Louis and his court, and he gave her just the place.
The château of the Petit Trianon is a celebrated example of the transition from the Rococo style of the earlier part of the 18th century, to the more sober and refined, Neoclassical style of the 1760s and onward. Essentially an exercise on a cube, the Petit Trianon attracts interest by virtue of its four facades, each thoughtfully designed according to that part of the estate it would face. The Corinthian order predominates, with two detached and two semi-detached pillars on the side of the
The city of Pompeii is a partially buried Roman town-city near modern Naples in the Italian region of Campania, in the territory of the comune of Pompei. Along with Herculaneum, Pompeii was partially destroyed and buried under 4 to 6 m (13 to 20 ft) of ash and pumice in the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in AD 79.
Pompeii was lost for nearly 1700 years before its rediscovery in 1748. Since then, its excavation has provided an extraordinarily detailed insight into the life of a city during the Pax Romana. Today, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is one of the most popular tourist attractions of Italy, with approximately 2,500,000 visitors every year.
Pompeii in Latin is a second declension plural (Pompeiī, -ōrum). According to Theodor Kraus, "The root of the word Pompeii would appear to be the Oscan word for the number five, pompe, which suggests that either the community consisted of five hamlets or, perhaps, it was settled by a family group (gens Pompeia)."
The ruins of Pompeii are situated at coordinates 40°45′00″N 14°29′10″E / 40.75°N 14.48611°E / 40.75; 14.48611, near the modern suburban town of Pompei (nowadays written with one "i"). It stands on a spur formed by a lava flow to
Sanahin (Armenian: Սանահին) is a village in the northern province of Lori in Armenia, now considered part of the city of Alaverdi (the cable car that connects it with the Alaverdi centre is supposed to have the steepest climb in the whole former USSR). The village is notable for its Sanahin Monastery complex, founded in the 10th century and listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site along with the monastery in nearby Haghpat.
Sanahin was also the birthplace of the two well-known Mikoyan brothers. Artem Mikoyan was a well known airplane constructor, and one of the "fathers" of MiG. Anastas Mikoyan was the politician with the longest career of any member of the Soviet Politburo. He was involved in negotiating the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, was a member of the Soviet delegation trying to improve relations with Josip Broz Tito's Yugoslavia, and played a major role in the Cuban Missile Crisis negotiations. A fraction of visitors to the monastery also stop at the small nearby Mikoyan museum in the former school, run by Mikoyans' relatives.
The Historic Centre of Sighișoara (Sighișoara Citadel) is the old historic center of the town of Sighișoara (German: Schäßburg), Romania, built in the 12th century by Saxon colonists under the Latin name Castrum Sex. It is an inhabited medieval citadel that, in 1999, was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its 850-year-old testament to the history and culture of the Transylvanian Saxons.
Birthplace of Vlad III the Impaler (in Romanian Vlad Țepeș), Sighișoara hosts, every year, a medieval festival where arts and crafts blend with rock music and stage plays. The city marks the upper boundary of the Land of Sachsen. Like its bigger brothers, Sibiu (Hermannstadt - The European Cultural Capital in 2007) and Braşov (Kronstadt), Sighișoara exhibits architecture typical of medieval Germany. During the Communist era, this German area was preserved, and the original architecture is still in place.
Media related to Sighişoara at Wikimedia Commons
Třebíč (Czech pronunciation: [ˈtr̝̊ɛbiːtʃ] ( listen); German: Trebitsch) is a city in the Moravian part of the Vysočina Region of the Czech Republic.
Třebíč is situated 35 km southeast of Jihlava and 65 km west of Brno on the Jihlava River. Třebíč is from 392 to 503 metres above sea-level.
Třebíč has a temperate climate with occasional rains. Average annual temperature is 7.5°C, average temperature in July is 18.5°C and -3.4°C in January.
Třebíč is a regional centre with a population of approximately 40,000. In the age of expansion Třebíč was third most important town in Moravia. The population growth started after World War II. Třebíč is an important regional center today.
There are many sights. The Jewish Quarter and St Procopius' Basilica is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
This includes the old Jewish Quarter and the largely Romanesque St Procopius' Basilica that incorporates some later gothic features, including a rare example of a ten-part or 'botanical' rose window. Such designs reflect the five or ten parts of the roseaceae family flowers and fruit, based on their five sepals and petals or the usual ten segments of their fruit. Botanical rose windows contrast with
Banff National Park (pronunciation: /ˈbæmf/) is Canada's oldest national park, established in 1885 in the Rocky Mountains. The park, located 110–180 km (68–110 mi) west of Calgary in the province of Alberta, encompasses 6,641 km (2,564 sq mi) of mountainous terrain, with numerous glaciers and ice fields, dense coniferous forest, and alpine landscapes. The Icefields Parkway extends from Lake Louise, connecting to Jasper National Park in the north. Provincial forests and Yoho National Park are neighbours to the west, while Kootenay National Park is located to the south and Kananaskis Country to the southeast. The main commercial centre of the park is the town of Banff, in the Bow River valley.
The Canadian Pacific Railway was instrumental in Banff's early years, building the Banff Springs Hotel and Chateau Lake Louise, and attracting tourists through extensive advertising. In the early 20th century, roads were built in Banff, at times by war internees, and through Great Depression-era public works projects. Since the 1960s, park accommodations have been open all year, with annual tourism visits to Banff increasing to over 5 million in the 1990s. Millions more pass through the park on
Chinguetti (Arabic: شنقيط Šenqīṭ) is a ksar or medieval trading centre in northern Mauritania, lying on the Adrar Plateau east of Atar.
Founded in the 13th century, as the center of several trans-Saharan trade routes, this tiny city continues to attract a handful of visitors who admire its spare architecture, exotic scenery and ancient libraries. The city is seriously threatened by the encroaching desert; high sand dunes mark the western boundary and several houses have been abandoned to the encroaching sand.
The indigenous Saharan architecture of older sectors of the city features reddish dry stone and mud-brick houses, featuring flat roofs timbered from palms. Many of the older houses feature hand-hewn doors cut from massive ancient acacia trees that have long disappeared from the surroundings. Many homes include courtyards or patios that crowd along narrow streets leading to the central mosque.
Notable buildings in the town include The Friday Mosque of Chinguetti,an ancient structure of dry stone featuring a square minaret capped with five ostrich egg finials; the former French Foreign Legion fortress; and a tall watertower. The old quarter of the Chinguetti is home to five
Crespi d'Adda is a historical settlement in Capriate San Gervasio, Lombardy, northern Italy. It is an outstanding example of the 19th and early 20th-century "company towns" built in Europe and North America by enlightened industrialists to meet the workers' needs. The site is still intact and is partly used for industrial purposes, although changing economic and social conditions now threaten its survival. Since 1995 it has been on UNESCO's list of World Heritage Sites.
In 1869 Cristoforo Benigno Crespi, a textile manufacturer from Busto Arsizio (Varese), bought the 1 km valley between the rivers Brembo and Adda, to the south of Capriate, with the intention of installing a cotton mill on the banks of the Adda.
Cristoforo Crespi introduced the most modern spinning, weaving and finishing processes in his Cotton Mill. The Hydroelectric power plant in Trezzo, on the Adda river just a few Km upwards, was built up around 1906 for the manufacturer Cristoforo Benigno Crespi. The settlement which was built in 1878 next to the cotton-mill was a village, a residential area provided with social services such as a clinic, a school building, a theatre, a cemetery, a wash-house and a church.
Domica is the biggest cave in the Slovak Karst in southern Slovakia, Rožňava District. It is a part of the cave complex that continues into the cave Baradla (Aggtelek) in Hungary. It was discovered in 1926 by Ján Majko. Since 1932, 1,600 metres (5,200 ft) of the 5,140 metres (16,860 ft) are open to public. The cave is included in the UNESCO World Heritage list since 1995 as a part of Caves of Aggtelek Karst and Slovak Karst site.
New Lanark is a village on the River Clyde, approximately 1.4 miles (2.2 kilometres) from Lanark, in South Lanarkshire, and some 40 km southeast of Glasgow, Scotland. It was founded in 1786 by David Dale, who built cotton mills and housing for the mill workers. Dale built the mills there in a brief partnership with the English inventor and entrepreneur Richard Arkwright to take advantage of the water power provided by the only waterfalls on the River Clyde. Under the ownership of a partnership that included Dale's son-in-law, Robert Owen, a Welsh philanthropist and social reformer, New Lanark became a successful business and an epitome of utopian socialism as well as an early example of a planned settlement and so an important milestone in the historical development of urban planning.
The New Lanark mills operated until 1968. After a period of decline, the New Lanark Conservation Trust (NLCT) was founded in 1974 (now known as the New Lanark Trust (NLT)) to prevent demolition of the village. By 2006 most of the buildings have been restored and the village has become a major tourist attraction. It is one of five UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Scotland and an Anchor Point of ERIH -
Novodevichy Convent, also known as Bogoroditse-Smolensky Monastery (Russian: Новоде́вичий монасты́рь, Богоро́дице-Смоле́нский монасты́рь), is probably the best-known cloister of Moscow. Its name, sometimes translated as the New Maidens' Monastery, was devised to differ from an ancient maidens' convent within the Moscow Kremlin. Unlike other Moscow cloisters, it has remained virtually intact since the 17th century. In 2004, it was proclaimed a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Novodevichy Convent was founded in 1524 by Grand Prince Vasili III in commemoration of the conquest of Smolensk in 1514. It was built as a fortress at a curve of the Moskva River and became an important part of the southern defensive belt of the capital, which had already included a number of other monasteries. Upon its founding, the Novodevichy Convent was granted 3,000 rubles and the villages of Akhabinevo and Troparevo. Ivan the Terrible would later grant a number of other villages to the convent.
The Novodevichy Convent was known to have sheltered many ladies from the Russian royal families and boyar clans, who had been forced to take the veil, such as Feodor I's wife Irina Godunova (she was there with her
Provins is a commune in the Seine-et-Marne department in the Île-de-France region in north-central France.
Provins, a town of medieval fairs, became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2001.
Provins is not the largest city in the arrondissement, but it is the seat. The largest town is Montereau-Fault-Yonne.
The arrondissement has 7 cantons, 125 communes and 112,020 residents. The canton of Provins has 15 communes and 21,000 residents.
Provins was home to one of the Champagne fairs that were crucial to the medieval European economy, when the city was under the protection of Counts of Champagne.
Provins is well known for its medieval fortifications, such as the Tour César (the Caesar Tower) and well-preserved city walls.
The Saint Quiriace Collegiate Church is located here. The Empress Galla Placidia is said to have presented Ancona with the relics of Judas Cyriacus. However, the saint's head was situated at Provins, brought from Jerusalem by Henry I of Champagne, who built a church in this town to display it. It is still at the Saint Quiriace Collegiate Church, although construction work during the 12th century was never completed due to financial difficulties during the reign of
Alberobello is a small town and comune in the province of Bari, in Puglia, Italy. It has about 11,000 inhabitants and is famous for its unique trulli constructions. The Trulli of Alberobello are part of the UNESCO World Heritage sites list since 1996.
Media related to Alberobello at Wikimedia Commons
Dambulla cave temple (Sinhala: දඹුලු ලෙන් විහාරය dam̆būlū len vihāraya, Tamil: தம்புள்ளை பொற்கோவில் tampuḷḷai poṟkōvil) also known as the Golden Temple of Dambulla is a World Heritage Site (1991) in Sri Lanka, situated in the central part of the country. This site is situated 148 km east of Colombo and 72 km north of Kandy. It is the largest and best-preserved cave temple complex in Sri Lanka. The rock towers 160 m over the surrounding plains.There are more than 80 documented caves in the surrounding area. Major attractions are spread over 5 caves, which contain statues and paintings. These paintings and statues are related to Lord Buddha and his life. There total of 153 Buddha statues, 3 statues of Sri Lankan kings and 4 statues of gods and goddesses. The latter include two statues of Hindu gods, the god Vishnu and the god Ganesh. The murals cover an area of 2,100 square meters. Depictions on the walls of the caves include the temptation by the demon Mara, and Buddha's first sermon.
Prehistoric Sri Lankans would have lived in these cave complexes before the arrival of Buddhism in Sri Lanka as there are burial sites with human skeletons about 2700 years old in this area, at
Easter Island (Rapa Nui: Rapa Nui, Spanish: Isla de Pascua) is a Polynesian island in the southeastern Pacific Ocean, at the southeasternmost point of the Polynesian Triangle. A special territory of Chile that was annexed in 1888, Easter Island is famous for its 887 extant monumental statues, called moai, created by the early Rapanui people. It is a World Heritage Site (as determined by UNESCO) with much of the island protected within Rapa Nui National Park. In recent times the island has served as a warning of the cultural and environmental dangers of overexploitation. Ethnographers and archaeologists also blame diseases carried by European sailors and Peruvian slave raiding of the 1860s for devastating the local peoples.
Easter Island is claimed to be the most remote inhabited island in the world.
The name "Easter Island" was given by the island's first recorded European visitor, the Dutch explorer Jacob Roggeveen, who encountered it on Easter Sunday 1722, while searching for Davis or David's island. Roggeveen named it Paasch-Eyland (18th century Dutch for "Easter Island"). The island's official Spanish name, Isla de Pascua, also means "Easter Island".
The current Polynesian name
Tamaudun (玉陵) is a mausoleum in Shuri, Okinawa, built for Ryūkyūan royalty in 1501 by King Shō Shin, the third king of the second Shō dynasty a short distance from Shuri Castle.
The site, covering an area of 2,442m², consists of two stone-walled enclosures, the three compartments of the mausoleum itself facing north and backed by a natural cliff to the south. A stone stele in the outer enclosure memorializes the construction of the mausoleum, and lists the name of Shō Shin along with those of eight others involved in the construction. The three compartments of the mausoleum are laid out from east to west, with kings and queens in the eastern compartment and the princes and rest of the royal family in the western compartment, the central compartment used for the Ryukyuan tradition of senkotsu; remains would only be kept here for a limited time, after which the bones were washed and entombed. The shisa (stone lions) guarding the tomb are examples of traditional Ryūkyūan stone sculpture. The architectural style of the mausoleum represents that of the royal palace at the time, which was a stone structure with a wooden roof.
Eighteen kings are entombed at Tamaudun, along with their
The Wet Tropics of Queensland World Heritage Site consists of approximately 8,940 km² of Australian wet tropical forests growing along the north-east Queensland portion of the Great Dividing Range, stretching from Townsville to Cooktown, running in close parallel to the Great Barrier Reef (another world heritage site).
The Wet Tropics of Queensland were also added to the Australian National Heritage List in May 2007. The rainforests have the highest concentration of primitive flowering plant families in the world.
Among the National Parks included within the Wet Tropics are:
and over 700 protected areas including privately-owned land.
The World Heritage Area includes Australia's highest waterfall, Wallaman Falls.
The site contains many unique features such as over 390 rare plant species, which includes 74 species that are threatened. There are at least 85 species that are endemic to the area, 13 different types of rainforest and 29 species of mangrove, which is more than anywhere else in the country. 370 species of bird have been recorded in the area.
The endangered Southern Cassowary and rare Spotted-tailed Quoll are some of the many threatened species, while the Musky
The Wudang Mountains (simplified Chinese: 武当山; traditional Chinese: 武當山; pinyin: Wǔdāng Shān, pronounced [ùtɑ́ŋ ʂán]), also known as Wu Tang Shan or simply Wudang, are a small mountain range in the northwestern part of Hubei Province of People's Republic of China, just to the south of the city of Shiyan.
On Chinese maps, the name "Wudangshan" (武当山) is applied both to the entire mountain range (which runs east-west along the southern edge of the Hanshui River valley, crossing several county-level divisions of Shiyan Prefecture-level city), and to the small group of peaks located within Wudangshan Jiedao of the Danjiangkou County-level City of the Shiyan Prefecture-level city. It is the latter specific area which is known as a Taoist center.
Modern maps show the elevation of the highest of the peaks in the Wudang Shan "proper" as 1612 meters; however, the entire Wudangshan range has somewhat higher elevations elsewhere.
Some consider the Wudang Mountains to be a "branch" of the Daba Mountains range, which is a major mountain system of the western Hubei, Shaanxi, Chongqing and Sichuan.
In years past, the mountains of Wudang were known for the many Taoist monasteries to be found
Aggtelek National Park (Hungarian: Aggteleki Nemzeti Park) is a national park in Northern Hungary, in the Aggtelek Karst region. It was founded in 1985. It contains 198.92 km² (of which 39.22 km² are under increased protection). It has been part of the UNESCO World Heritage since 1995. The largest stalactite cave of Europe is situated in this area: the Baradla Cave (26 km long, of which 8 km is in Slovakia, known under the name of Domica).
The first written documentation from the caves can be dated back to 1549. Since 1920 it has been used as a tourist attraction. Several of the caves have different specialities. For example, the Peace Cave has a sanatorium which help treating people suffering from asthma.
Nanda Devi (Hindi: नन्दा देवी पर्वत) is the second highest mountain in India and the highest entirely within the country (Kangchenjunga being on the border of India and Nepal); owing to this geography it was the highest known mountain in the world until computations on Dhaulagiri by western surveyors in 1808. It was also the highest mountain in India before Sikkim joined the Indian Union. It is part of the Garhwal Himalayas, and is located in the state of Uttarakhand, between the Rishiganga valley on the west and the Goriganga valley on the east. Its name means Bliss-Giving Goddess. The peak is regarded as the patron-goddess of the Uttarakhand Himalaya.
Nanda Devi is a two-peaked massif, forming a 2 kilometres (1.2 mi) long high ridge, oriented east-west. The west summit is higher, and the eastern summit is called Nanda Devi East. Together the peaks are referred to as the twin peaks of the goddess Nanda. The main summit stands guarded by a barrier ring comprising some of the highest mountains in the Indian Himalayas (one of which is Nanda Devi East), twelve of which exceed 6,400 m (21,000 ft) in height, further elevating its sacred status as the daughter of the Himalaya in Indian
The Palace of Westminster is the meeting place of the House of Commons and the House of Lords, the two houses of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. Commonly known as the Houses of Parliament after its tenants, the Palace lies on the Middlesex bank of the River Thames in the City of Westminster, in central London. Its name, which derives from the neighbouring Westminster Abbey, may refer to either of two structures: the Old Palace, a medieval building complex that was destroyed by fire in 1834, and its replacement New Palace that stands today. For ceremonial purposes, the palace retains its original style and status as a royal residence.
The first royal palace was built on the site in the eleventh century, and Westminster was the primary London residence of the Kings of England until a fire destroyed much of the complex in 1512. After that, it served as the home of Parliament, which had been meeting there since the thirteenth century, and the seat of the Royal Courts of Justice, based in and around Westminster Hall. In 1834, an even greater fire ravaged the heavily rebuilt Houses of Parliament, and the only structures of significance to survive were Westminster Hall, the
Reichenau Island lies in Lake Constance in southern Germany, at approximately 47°42′N 9°4′E / 47.7°N 9.067°E / 47.7; 9.067. It lies between Gnadensee and Untersee, two parts of Lake Constance, almost due west of the city of Konstanz. The island is connected to the mainland by a causeway that was completed in 1838. The causeway is interrupted between the site of the former castle Schopflen and the eastern end of Reichenau Island island by the 10-metre-wide Bruckgraben, a waterway which is spanned by a low road bridge that allows passage of ordinary boats but not of sailboats through its 95-metre course. The highest elevation on the island, the Hochwart, reaches 438.7 metres, or 43 metres above the lake surface.
It was declared a World Heritage Site in 2000 because of its monastery, the Abbey of Reichenau. The abbey's Münster is dedicated to the Virgin and Saint Mark. Two further churches were built on the island consecrated to St Georg, and to Sts Peter and Paul. The famous artworks of Reichenau include the Ottonian murals of miracles of Christ in St Georg, unique survivals from the 10th century. The abbey's bailiff was housed in a two-storey stone building that was raised by two
Svaneti (Suania in ancient sources) (Georgian: სვანეთი Svaneti) is a historic province in Georgia, in the northwestern part of the country. It is inhabited by the Svans, a geographic subgroup of the Georgians.
Surrounded by 3,000–5,000 meter peaks, Svaneti is the highest inhabited area in the Caucasus. Four of the 10 highest peaks of the Caucasus are located in the region. The highest mountain in Georgia, Mount Shkhara at 5,201 meters (17,059 feet), is located in the province. Prominent peaks include Tetnuldi (4,974 m / 16,319 ft), Shota Rustaveli (4,960 m / 16,273 ft), Mount Ushba (4,710 m / 15,453 ft), Ailama (4,525 m / 14,842 ft), as well as Lalveri, Latsga and others.
Situated on the southern slopes of the central Greater Caucasus, Svaneti extends over the upper valleys of the Rioni, Enguri and Tskhenis-Tsqali. Geographically and historically, the province has been divided into two parts—Upper Svaneti (Zemo Svaneti; the present day Mestia Raioni) and Lower Svaneti (Kvemo Svaneti; the present day Lentekhi Raioni) — centering on the valleys of the upper reaches of the two rivers Enguri and Cxenis-c’q’ali, respectively. They are distributed between the present-day regions of
Yosemite National Park ( /joʊˈsɛmɨtiː/ yoh-SEM-it-ee) is a United States National Park spanning eastern portions of Tuolumne, Mariposa and Madera counties in the central eastern portion of California, United States. The park covers an area of 761,268 acres (3,080.74 km) and reaches across the western slopes of the Sierra Nevada mountain chain. Over 3.7 million people visit Yosemite each year: most spend their time in the seven square miles (18 km) of Yosemite Valley. Designated a World Heritage Site in 1984, Yosemite is internationally recognized for its spectacular granite cliffs, waterfalls, clear streams, Giant Sequoia groves, and biological diversity. Almost 95% of the park is designated wilderness. Although not the first designated national park, Yosemite was central to the development of the national park idea, largely owing to the work of people like Galen Clark and John Muir.
Yosemite is one of the largest and least fragmented habitat blocks in the Sierra Nevada, and the park supports a diversity of plants and animals. The park has an elevation range from 2,127 to 13,114 feet (648 to 3,997 m) and contains five major vegetation zones: chaparral/oak woodland, lower montane
The Palace of Fontainebleau, located 55 kilometres from the centre of Paris, is one of the largest French royal châteaux. The palace as it is today is the work of many French monarchs, building on an early 16th century structure of Francis I. The building is arranged around a series of courtyards. The city of Fontainebleau has grown up around the remainder of the Forest of Fontainebleau, a former royal hunting park.This forest is now home to many endangered species of Europe.
The older château on this site was already used in the latter part of the 12th century by King Louis VII, for whom Thomas Becket consecrated the chapel. Fontainebleau was a favourite residence of Philip Augustus (Philip II) and Louis IX. The creator of the present edifice was Francis I, under whom the architect Gilles le Breton erected most of the buildings of the Cour Ovale, including the Porte Dorée, its southern entrance. The king also invited the architect Sebastiano Serlio to France, and Leonardo da Vinci. The Gallery of Francis I, with its frescoes framed in stucco by Rosso Fiorentino, carried out between 1522 and 1540, was the first great decorated gallery built in France. Broadly speaking, at
Monte Pascoal is located at 16°53'47.73"S, 39°24'26.09"W; 62 km to the south of the city of Porto Seguro, in the state of Bahia, Brazil. According to history, it was the first part of land viewed by Portuguese explorer Pedro Álvares Cabral, allegedly the first European to arrive in Brazil, in 1500.
It was described as a tall, rounded mountain arising from the ocean. Monte Pascoal is a national symbol to Brazilians and gives its name to a national park, 'Parque Nacional do Monte Pascoal'. It includes a Pataxó Indian settlement and is one of the sites where the original Mata Atlântica forest has been preserved.
Wismar (German pronunciation: [ˈvɪsmaʁ]), is a small port and Hanseatic League town in northern Germany on the Baltic Sea, in the state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, about 45 km due east of Lübeck, and 30 km due north of Schwerin. Its natural harbour, located in the Bay of Wismar is well-protected by a promontory. The population was 45,414 in March 2005, more than doubled from 21,902 in 1905. A former district-free town, it is the capital of the district of Nordwestmecklenburg since the September 2011 district reforms.
Representative of Hanseatic League city brick construction as well as the German brick churches, the city has been included in the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites since 2002.
The town was the setting of the 1922 vampire movie Nosferatu (in the film however, the town is named "Wisborg").
Founded by the Polabians as Vishemir and later settled by the Germans, Wismar is said to have received its civic rights in 1229, and came into the possession of Mecklenburg in 1301. In 1259 it had entered a pact with Lübeck and Rostock, in order to defend itself against the numerous Baltic sea pirates. This developed into the Hanseatic League. During the 13th and 14th centuries it
The Holy Trinity Column in Olomouc is a Baroque monument in the Czech Republic, built in 1716–1754 in honour of God. The main purpose was a spectacular celebration of Catholic Church and faith, partly caused by feeling of gratitude for ending a plague, which struck Moravia (now in the Czech Republic) between 1714 and 1716. The column was also understood to be an expression of local patriotism, since all artists and master craftsmen working on this monument were Olomouc citizens, and almost all depicted saints were connected with the city of Olomouc in some way.
It is the biggest Baroque sculptural group in the Czech Republic. In 2000 it was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List as "one of the most exceptional examples of the apogee of central European Baroque artistic expression".
According to the ICOMOS evaluation of this patrimony, "the erection of Marian (plague) columns on town squares is an exclusively Baroque, post-Tridentine, phenomenon. Its iconographic basis lies in the Book of Revelation. The basic model is thought to have been the column in the Piazza Santa Maria Maggiore in Rome, from 1614.
This monument for Olomouc was the culmination of work of several artists
Hortobágy (Hungarian pronunciation: [ɦortobaːɟ]) is both the name of a village in Hajdú-Bihar county and an 800 km² national park in Eastern Hungary, rich with folklore and cultural history. The park, a part of the Alföld (Great Plain), was designated as a national park in 1973 (the first in Hungary), and elected among the World Heritage sites in 1999. The Hortobágy is Hungary's largest protected area, and the largest natural grassland in Europe.
Hortobágy is a steppe, a grassy plain with cattle, sheep, oxen, and horses, tended by herdsmen, and it provides habitat for various species (342 bird species have been documented, including the Common Crane, Dotterel, Stone Curlew and Great Bustard). One of its most iconic sites is the Nine-holed Bridge. Traditional T-shaped sweep wells dot the landscape, as well as the occasional mirage of trees shimmering in the reflected heat of the Puszta.
Until recently it was believed that this alkaline steppe was formed by the clear cutting of huge forests in the Middle Ages, followed by measures to control the course of the Tisza River, allegedly resulting in the soil's current structure and pH. However, Hortobágy is much older, with alkalinization
Leptis Magna (Arabic: لَبْدَة) also known as Lectis Magna (or Lepcis Magna as it is sometimes spelled), also called Lpqy, Neapolis, Lebida or Lebda to modern-day residents of Libya, was a prominent city of the Roman Empire. Its ruins are located in Khoms, Libya, 130 km (81 mi) east of Tripoli, on the coast where the Wadi Lebda meets the sea. The site is one of the most spectacular and unspoiled Roman ruins in the Mediterranean.
The city appears to have been founded by Phoenician colonists sometime around 1100 BC, who gave it the Lybico-Berber name Lpqy. The town did not achieve prominence until Carthage became a major power in the Mediterranean Sea in the 4th century BC. It nominally remained part of Carthage's dominions until the end of the Third Punic War in 146 BC and then became part of the Roman Republic, although from about 200 BC onward, it was for all intents and purposes an independent city.
Leptis Magna remained as such until the reign of the Roman emperor Tiberius, when the city and the surrounding area were formally incorporated into the empire as part of the province of Africa. It soon became one of the leading cities of Roman Africa and a major trading post.
Mérida (Extremaduran: Méria) is the capital of the autonomous community of Extremadura, western central Spain. It has a population of 57,127 (2010). The Archaeological Ensemble of Mérida has been a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1993.
Merida has a Mediterranean climate with Atlantic influences, due to the proximity of the Portuguese coast. The winters are mild, with minimum rarely below 0 °C (32 °F), and summers are hot with maximum temperatures occasionally exceeding 40 °C (104 °F).
As for precipitation, it normally measures between 450 and 500 mm annually . The months that record the most rainfall are November and December. Summers are dry, however, and it should be noted that in Merida, as in the rest of southern Spain, cycles of drought are common, ranging in duration from 2 to 5 years.
In autumn the climate is more changeable than in the rest of the year. Storms occur with some frequency, but the weather is often dry.
Both humidity and winds are low. However, frequent fog will occur, especially in the central months of autumn and winter.
It was founded in the year 25 BC, with the name of Emerita Augusta (meaning the veterans – discharged soldiers – of the army of Augustus,
Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park is a provincial park in British Columbia, Canada, located around Mount Assiniboine.
The park was established 1922. Some of the more recent history that is explorable within the park include Wheeler's Wonder Lodge (Naiset) (1924), Assiniboine Lodge (1928), the first ski lodge in the Canadian Rockies, and Sunburst (1928).
In 1990 this park was included within the Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks UNESCO World Heritage Site. Together with the other national and provincial parks that comprise the Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks, the park was recognized for its natural beauty and the geological and ecological significance of its mountain landscapes containing the habitats of rare and endangered species, mountain peaks, glaciers, lakes, waterfalls, canyons, limestone caves and fossils.
The park aims to protect a large variety of species. Eighty-four species of birds inhabit the park environs, based on sightings. Columbian ground squirrels are very common in the core area of the park. Ten species of carnivore including wolves, black bear, grizzly bear, weasel, cougar, lynx inhabit the park. Six species of ungulates: elk, mule deer, white-tailed deer, moose,
Mount Emei (Chinese: 峨嵋山; pinyin: Éméi Shān; Wade–Giles: O-mei Shan, pronounced [ɤ̌měɪ̯ ʂán]) is a mountain in Sichuan province, China. Its name is usually written as "峨眉山" and occasionally "峩嵋山" or "峩眉山" but all three are translated as Mount Emei or Mount Emeishan (a linguistic tautology). The word 峨 can mean "high" or "lofty", but the mountain's name is merely a toponym that carries no additional meaning.
Orographically, Mt. Emei sits at the western rim of the Sichuan Basin. The mountains west of it are known as Daxiangling. A large surrounding area of countryside is geologically known as the Permian Emeishan Large Igneous Province, a large igneous province generated by the Emeishan Traps volcanic eruptions during the Permian Period. At 3,099 metres (10,167 ft), Mt. Emei is the highest of the Four Sacred Buddhist Mountains of China.
Administratively, Mt. Emei is located near the county-level city of the same name (Emeishan City), which is in turn part of the prefecture-level city of Leshan. It was made a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996.
Mount Emei is one of the Four Sacred Buddhist Mountains of China, and is traditionally regarded as the bodhimaṇḍa, or place of enlightenment,
San Agustin Church is a Roman Catholic church under the auspices of The Order of St. Augustine, located inside the historic walled city of Intramuros in Manila.
In 1993, San Agustin Church was one of four Philippine churches constructed during the Spanish colonial period to be designated as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, under the collective title Baroque Churches of the Philippines. It was named a National Historical Landmark by the Philippine government in 1976.
The present structure is actually the third Augustinian church erected on the site. The first San Agustin Church was the first religious structure constructed by the Spaniards on the island of Luzon. Made of bamboo and nipa, it was completed in 1571, but destroyed by fire in December, 1574 during the attempted invasion of Manila by the forces of Limahong. A second church made of wood was constructed on the site. This was destroyed in February 1583, in a fire that started when a candle set ablaze the drapes of the funeral bier during the interment of the Spanish Governor-General Gonzalo Ronquillo de Peñalosa.
The Augustinians decided to rebuild the church using stone, and to construct an adjacent monastery. Construction
San Ignacio Miní was one of the many missions founded in 1632 by the Jesuits in the Americas during the Spanish colonial period near present-day San Ignacio valley, some 60 km north of Posadas, Misiones Province, Argentina.
The original mission was erected near the year 1610 by priests José Cataldino and Simón Maceta in the region called Guayrá by the natives and La Pinería by the Spanish conquistadores in present Paraná State, Brazil. Because of the constant attacks of the Portuguese Bandeirantes, the mission first moved in 1632, and didn't settle in its current location until 1696, and was called San Ignacio Miní (minor in Guaraní) to distinguish it from its bigger homonym San Ignacio Guazú (great).
In the 18th century the mission had a population of around 3000 people, and a rich cultural and handicraft activity, which was commercialized through the nearby Paraná River. Nevertheless, after the Suppression of the Society of Jesus of 1767, the Jesuits left the mission a year later, and the mission finally destroyed in 1817, as well as other missions in the area.
The ruins are one of the best preserved among the several build in a territory today belonging to Argentina, Brazil and
The Southwest National Park is a 618,267-hectare (1,527,770-acre) national park located in the south-west of Tasmania, Australia. The park is Tasmania's largest and forms part of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area.
The eastern boundary is 93 kilometres (58 mi) west of Hobart and the park stretches to the west and south coasts. This park comprises the bulk of Tasmania's South West Wilderness.
The park is well known for its pristine wilderness and remoteness. Weather in the park is highly changeable, and can be severe. The area is largely unaffected by humans. Although evidence shows Tasmanian Aborigines have visited the area for at least 25,000 years, and European settlers have made occasional forays into the park area since the 19th century, there has been very little permanent habitation and only minimal impact on the natural environment. Within the area there is only one road, to the hydroelectricity township of Strathgordon. The southern and western reaches of the park are far removed from any vehicular access. The only access is by foot, boat, or light aircraft.
The tiny locality of Melaleuca in the extreme south-west provides an airstrip and some very basic
Toruń [ˈtɔruɲ] ( listen) (German: Thorn ( listen), Kashubian: Torń, Latin: Thorunium, see also: other names) is an ancient city in northern Poland, on the Vistula River. Its population is 205,934 as of June 2009. Toruń is one of the oldest cities in Poland. The medieval old town of Toruń is the birthplace of the astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus.
In 1997 the medieval part of the city was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In 2007 the Old Town in Toruń was added to the list of Seven Wonders of Poland. National Geographic Polska rated the old town market and the Gothic town hall as one of the "30 Most Beautiful Places in the World." In 2010 Forbes magazine ranked Toruń as number one of the "Polish Cities Attractive for Business". In 2009 it was listed as one of the "Best Cities to Live in Poland", in a ranking published by Przekrój.
Previously it was the capital of the Toruń Voivodeship (1975–98) and the Pomeranian Voivodeship (1921–45). Since 1999, Toruń has been a seat of the self-government of the Kujawy-Pomerania Province and, as such, is one of its two capitals (together with Bydgoszcz). The cities and neighboring counties form the Bydgoszcz-Toruń bi-polar metropolitan area.
Hokki-ji or Hōki-ji (法起寺) — formerly known as Okamoto-dera (岡本寺) and Ikejiri-dera (池後寺) is a Buddhist temple in Okamoto, Ikaruga, Nara, Japan. The temple's honorary sangō prefix is "Kōhonzan" (岡本山), although it is rarely used. The temple was constructed to honor Avalokitesvara, and an 11-faced statue of the goddess is the primary object of worship in the temple. Hokki-ji is often considered to be one of the seven great temples founded by Prince Shōtoku, however, the temple was not completed until some decades after his death. In 1993, it was registered as a UNESCO World Heritage Site as one of the Buddhist Monuments in the Hōryū-ji Area.
Hokki-ji is located in Ikaruga—a town that has long been a focal point of Japanese Buddhism—and the area contains numerous other old temples related to Prince Shotoku, such as Hōrin-ji and Chūgū-ji. Hokki-ji is located in a foothill to the northeast of Hōryū-ji Tō-in. It is said that the temple lies atop the ruins of "Okamoto no Miya" (岡本宮) palace, wherein Prince Shōtoku had lectured on the Lotus Sutra, and that according to the prince's last will and testament, his son, Prince Yamashiro (Yamashiro no Ōe no ō) rebuilt the former palace as a temple.
Osun-Osogbo or Osun-Osogbo Sacred Grove is a sacred forest along the banks of the Oshun River just outside the city of Osogbo, Osun State, Nigeria.
The Osun-Osogbo Grove is among the last of the sacred forests which usually adjoined the edges of most Yoruba cities before extensive urbanization. Osun-Osgogbo festival is celebrated every year. Osun- worshippers come from all walks of life to celebrate this day.
In recognition of its global significance and its cultural value, the Sacred Grove was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2005.
Petäjävesi is a municipality of Finland.
It is located in the province of Western Finland, next to Jyväskylä and is part of the Central Finland region. The municipality has a population of 4,072 (31 August 2012) and covers an area of 495.39 square kilometres (191.27 sq mi) of which 39.01 km (15.06 sq mi) is water. There are all together 99 lakes in Petäjävesi. Biggest lakes are Jämsänvesi-Petäjävesi, Ala-Kintaus and Ylä-Kintaus. Karikkoselkä is a lake in Petäjävesi, which is formed by a meteorite. The population density is 8.92 inhabitants per square kilometre (23.1 /sq mi).
The municipality is unilingually Finnish.
The Petäjävesi Old Church is listed as an UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Karikkoselkä impact crater is located southeast of the municipal centre.
Media related to Petäjävesi at Wikimedia Commons
Tiya is a town in southern Ethiopia. Located in the Gurage Zone of the Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples Region south of Addis Ababa, the town has a latitude and longitude of 8°26′N 38°37′E / 8.433°N 38.617°E / 8.433; 38.617.
Tiya is best known for its adjacent archeological site, which is distinguished by 36 standing stones or stelae, "32 of which are engraved with enigmatic symbols, notably swords," marking a large, prehistoric burial complex. A German ethnographic expedition had visited the site in April 1935, and had found at one hour's journey to the south of the caravan camp the stone monoliths with sword symbol, which had been seen earlier by Neuville and Père Azaïs. The archeological site was designated a World Heritage Site in 1980.
Other points of interest near Tiya include Melka Awash, the Hera Shetan crater lake, and Agesoke a place where very tall naturally ordered stoneblocks could be seen.
Based on figures from the Central Statistical Agency in 2005, Tiya has an estimated total population of 3,363 of whom 1,615 are men and 1,748 are women. The 1994 national census reported this town had a total population of 1,856 of whom 894 were males and 962 were
The Drakensberg (Afrikaans: Drakensberge "Dragon Mountains"; Zulu: uKhahlamba "Barrier of Spears"; Sotho: Maluti) is the highest mountain range in Southern Africa, rising to 3,482 metres (11,424 ft) in height. Its geological history lends it a distinctive character amongst the mountain ranges of the world. Geologically, the range resembles the Simien Mountains of Ethiopia. The Drakensberg mountains cover Eastern Cape, KwaZulu Natal, Lesotho, Swaziland, Mpumalanga and end in Tzaneen in Limpopo Province.
During the Pre-Cambrian Era, volcanic eruptions in the area resulted in lava covering large sections of the Southern African sub-continent. In the Palaeozoic Era, wind and water deposited thick layers of shale, mudstone and sandstone, now known as the Karoo Supergroup, over the ancient primary rock. When Gondwanaland began to break up 200 million years ago, the resultant forces caused the extrusion of magma, known as Drakensberg lava, through fissures and cracks in the Earth's surface. In the Drakensberg region it capped the sedimentary rock formations with layers of solid basalt up to 1400 m thick. Weathering reduced the range's size, and caused the plateau to recede. In modern
Mammoth Cave National Park is a U.S. National Park in central Kentucky, encompassing portions of Mammoth Cave, the longest cave system known in the world. The official name of the system is the Mammoth-Flint Ridge Cave System for the ridge under which the cave has formed. The park was established as a national park on July 1, 1941. It became a World Heritage Site on October 27, 1981, and an international Biosphere Reserve on September 26, 1990.
The park's 52,830 acres (21,380 ha) are located primarily in Edmonson County, Kentucky, with small areas extending eastward into Hart County and Barren County. It is centered around the Green River, with a tributary, the Nolin River, feeding into the Green just inside the park. With over 390 miles (630 km) of passageways it is by far the world's longest known cave system, being well over twice as long as the second-longest cave system, South Dakota's Jewel Cave, which has just over 157 miles (253 km) of known passageways.
Mammoth Cave developed in thick Mississippian-aged limestone strata capped by a layer of sandstone, making the system remarkably stable. It is known to include more than 390 miles (630 km) of passageway; new discoveries and
The Burgess Shale Formation, located in the Canadian Rockies of British Columbia, is one of the world's most celebrated fossil fields, and the best of its kind. It is famous for the exceptional preservation of the soft parts of its fossils. At 505 million years (Middle Cambrian) old it is one of the earliest fossil beds containing the imprints of soft-parts.
The rock unit is a black shale, and crops out at a number of localities near the town of Field in Yoho National Park.
The Burgess Shale was discovered by palaeontologist Charles Walcott in 1909, towards the end of the season's fieldwork. He returned in 1910 with his sons, daughter, and wife, establishing a quarry on the flanks of Fossil Ridge. The significance of soft-bodied preservation, and the range of organisms he recognised as new to science, led him to return to the quarry almost every year until 1924. At that point, aged 74, he had amassed over 65,000 specimens. Describing the fossils was a vast task, pursued by Walcott until his death in 1927. Walcott, led by scientific opinion at the time, attempted to categorise all fossils into living taxa, and as a result, the fossils were regarded as little more than curiosities at
Great Smoky Mountains National Park is a United States National Park and UNESCO World Heritage Site that straddles the ridgeline of the Great Smoky Mountains, part of the Blue Ridge Mountains, which are a division of the larger Appalachian Mountain chain. The border between Tennessee and North Carolina runs northeast to southwest through the centerline of the park. It is the most visited national park in the United States. On its route from Maine to Georgia, the Appalachian Trail also passes through the center of the park. The park was chartered by the United States Congress in 1934 and officially dedicated by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1940. It encompasses 522,419 acres (816.28 sq mi; 2,114.15 km), making it one of the largest protected areas in the eastern United States. The main park entrances are located along U.S. Highway 441 (Newfound Gap Road) at the towns of Gatlinburg, Tennessee, and Cherokee, North Carolina. It was the first national park whose land and other costs were paid for in part with federal funds; previous parks were funded wholly with state money or private funds.
Before the arrival of European settlers, the region was part of the homeland of the
Humberstone and Santa Laura Saltpeter Works are two former saltpeter refineries located in northern Chile. They were declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2005.
Humberstone and Santa Laura are located 48 km east of the city of Iquique in the Atacama Desert in the Region of Tarapacá in northern Chile. Other saltpeter works or "nitrate towns" include Chacabuco, Maria Elena, Pedro de Valdivia, Puelma and Aguas Santas among many others. Chacabuco is a special case since it was also used as a concentration camp during Pinochet's regime, and to this day remains surrounded by lost landmines.
In 1872, the Guillermo Wendell Nitrate Extraction Company founded the saltpeter works of Santa Laura, while the region was still a part of Peru. In the same year, James Thomas Humberstone founded the "Peru Nitrate Company", establishing the works of "La Palma". Both works grew quickly, becoming busy towns characterized by lovely buildings in the English style.
While La Palma became one of the largest saltpeter extractors of the whole region, Santa Laura did not do well, as production was low. It was taken over in 1902 by the Tamarugal Nitrate Company. In 1913 Santa Laura halted its production until
Lord Howe Island ( /ˈhaʊ/, locally /ˈhæɔ/) (formerly Lord Howe's Island) is an irregularly crescent-shaped volcanic remnant in the Tasman Sea between Australia and New Zealand, 600 kilometres (370 mi) directly east of mainland Port Macquarie, and about 900 kilometres (560 mi) from Norfolk Island. The island is about 10 km long and between 2.0 km and 0.3 km wide with an area of 14.55 km, "of which only 398 hectares is in the lowland settled area". Along the west coast there is a sandy semi-enclosed sheltered coral reef lagoon. Most of the population lives in the north, while the south is dominated by forested hills rising to the highest point on the island, Mount Gower (875 m or 2,871 ft). The Lord Howe Island Group of islands comprises 28 islands, islets and rocks. Apart from Lord Howe Island itself the most notable of these is the volcanic and uninhabited Ball's Pyramid about 23 km to the south-east. To the north there is the Admiralty Group, a cluster of seven small uninhabited islands.
The first reported sighting of Lord Howe Island was on 17 February 1788 when Lieutenant Henry Lidgbird Ball, commander of the Armed Tender HMS Supply was on its way from Botany Bay to found a
The Place Stanislas, known colloquially as the place Stan', is a large pedestrianized square in Nancy, Lorraine, France. Since 1983, the architectural ensemble comprising the Place Stanislas and the extension of its axis, the Place de la Carrière and Place d'Alliance, has been on the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
After the War of the Polish Succession in 1737, the Duchy of Upper Lorraine, of which Nancy was the capital, was given to Stanisław Leszczyński, former King of Poland and father-in-law to King Louis XV of France. An earlier ruler, Leopold, Duke of Lorraine, had undertaken a lot of reconstruction in Lorraine, which had been ravaged by a series of wars. He'd surrounded himself by artists and architects including Germain Boffrand, who trained Emmanuel Héré: hence Stanisław found a pool of talent and experience to draw from on his arrival.
The square was a major project in urban planning dreamt up by Stanisław Leszczyński as a way to link the medieval old town of Nancy and the new town built under Charles III in the 17th century. The square would also be a place royale to honour his son-in-law, Louis XV. The design linked two handsome buildings that already existed,
Skara Brae ( /ˈskɑrə ˈbreɪ/) is a stone-built Neolithic settlement, located on the Bay of Skaill on the west coast of Mainland, the largest island in the Orkney archipelago of Scotland. It consists of ten clustered houses, and was occupied from roughly 3180 BCE–2500 BCE. Europe's most complete Neolithic village, Skara Brae gained UNESCO World Heritage Site status as one of four sites making up "The Heart of Neolithic Orkney." Older than Stonehenge and the Great Pyramids, it has been called the "Scottish Pompeii" because of its excellent preservation.
In the winter of 1850, a severe storm hit Scotland causing widespread damage and over 200 deaths. In the Bay of Skaill, the storm stripped the earth from a large irregular knoll, known as "Skerrabra". When the storm cleared, local villagers found the outline of a village, consisting of a number of small houses without roofs. William Watt of Skaill, the local laird, began an amateur excavation of the site, but after uncovering four houses the work was abandoned in 1868. The site remained undisturbed until 1913, when during a single weekend the site was plundered by a party with shovels who took away an unknown quantity of artifacts. In
Uvs Lake (Mongolian: Увс нуур; Tuvan: Успа-Холь) is a highly saline lake in an endorheic basin - Uvs Nuur Basin in Mongolia with a small part in Russia. It is the largest lake in Mongolia by surface area, covering 3,350 km² at 759 m above sea level. The northeastern tip of the lake is situated in the Tuva Republic of the Russian Federation. The largest settlement near the lake is Ulaangom. This shallow and very saline body of water is a remainder of a huge saline sea which covered a much larger area several thousand years ago.
The name Uvs Nuur (sometimes spelled Ubsa Nor or Ubsunur) derives from subsen, a Mongolian word referring to the bitter dregs left behind in the making of airag (Mongolian milk wine), and nuur, the Mongolian word for lake. The name is undoubtedly a reference to the lake's salty, undrinkable water.
Uvs Lake has a length of 84 km and a width of 79 km, with an average depth of 6 m. Its basin is separated from the rest of the Great Lakes Depression by the Khan Khökhii ridge. However, it is not a rift lake as some mistakenly think.
The main feeding rivers are the Baruunturuun, Nariin gol, and Tes from Khangai Mountains in the east, and the Kharkhiraa River and
Val Camonica (also Valcamonica or Camonica Valley, in camunian dialect Al Camònega, poetic Camunia) is one of the largest valleys of the central Alps, in eastern Lombardy, about 90 km long. It starts from the Tonale Pass, at 1883 metres above sea level and ends at Corna Trentapassi, in the comune of Pisogne, near Lake Iseo. It has an area of about 1,335 km and 118,323 inhabitants.
It is traversed throughout its full length from the river Oglio, which begins in Ponte di Legno and terminates in lake Sebino between Pisogne and Costa Volpino.
Valle Camonica derives its name from the Latin Vallis Camunnorum, that means "the Valley of the Camunni", the name by which the Romans called the inhabitants (today are called Camuni).
Almost all of the valley is included in the administrative territory of the province of Brescia, excluding Lovere, Rogno, Costa Volpino and the Val di Scalve,which are parts of the province of Bergamo.
Valle Camonica can be divided into three main areas:
It is bounded by these borders:
The Valle Camonica is crossed by the River Oglio, the fifth longest river of Italy, which was born in Ponte di Legno from the confluence of rivers Frigidolfo and Narcanello. It flows
Paestum is the classical Roman name of a major Graeco-Roman city in the Campania region of Italy. It is located in the north of Cilento, near the coast about 85 km SE of Naples in the province of Salerno, and belongs to the commune of Capaccio, officially also named Capaccio-Paestum.
Paestum is situated close to the Tyrrhenian coast on the road linking Agropoli to Battipaglia. Its population is mainly located in the quarters surrounding the ancient Graeco-Roman ruins, as Santa Venere (to the south, near the hamlet of Licinella), Andreoli (north) and Torre di Paestum (west, by the sea). The town also has a railway station on the Naples-Salerno-Reggio Calabria line.
Founded around the end of the 7th century BC by colonists from the Greek city of Sybaris, and originally known as Poseidonia. Outside of archaeological evidence very little is known about Paestum during its first centuries. Archaeological evidence indicates that the city was expanding with the building of roads, temples and other features of a growing city. Coinage, architecture and molded votive figurines all attest to close relations maintained with Metaponto in the sixth and fifth centuries. It is not until the end of
Stari Most (English: Old Bridge) is a reconstruction of a 16th century Ottoman bridge in the city of Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina that crosses the river Neretva and connects two parts of the city. The Old Bridge stood for 427 years, until it was destroyed on November 9, 1993 by Bosnian Croat forces during the Croat-Bosniak War. Subsequently, a project was set in motion to reconstruct it, and the rebuilt bridge opened on July 23, 2004.
One of the country's most recognizable landmarks, it is also considered one of the most exemplary pieces of Islamic architecture in the Balkans and was designed by Mimar Hayruddin, a student and apprentice of the famous architect Mimar Sinan.
The bridge spans the Neretva river in the old town of Mostar, the city to which it gave the name. The city is the fourth-largest in the country; it is the center of the Herzegovina-Neretva Canton of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the unofficial capital of Herzegovina.
The Stari Most is hump-backed, 4 metres (13 ft 1 in) wide and 30 metres (98 ft 5 in) long, and dominates the river from a height of 24 m (78 ft 9 in). Two fortified towers protect it: the Helebija tower on the northeast and the Tara
The Studenica monastery (Serbian Cyrillic: Манастир Студеница, Manastir Studenica, Serbian pronunciation: [mânastiːr studɛ̌nit͡sa]) is a 12th-century Serbian Orthodox monastery situated 39 km southwest of Kraljevo, in central Serbia. It is one of the largest and richest Serb Orthodox monasteries.
Stefan Nemanja, the founder of the medieval Serb state, founded the monastery in 1190. The monastery's fortified walls encompass two churches: the Church of the Virgin, and the Church of the King, both of which were built using white marble. The monastery is best known for its collection of 13th- and 14th century Byzantine-style fresco paintings.
Studenica was declared Monument of Culture of Exceptional Importance in 1979, and it is protected by Republic of Serbia, and in 1986 UNESCO included Studenica monastery on the list of World Heritage Sites, with the description:
The monastery Studenica, dedicated to the Presentation of the Holy Virgin, is the mother-church of all Serbian temples. It was constructed over a quite long period of time. The first stage of works were completed by the spring of 1196, when Stefan Nemanja abdicated and took monastic vows at the monastery. When he later left
Jongmyo is a Confucian shrine dedicated to the memorial services for the deceased kings and queens of the Korean Joseon Dynasty. According to UNESCO, the shrine is the oldest royal Confucian shrine preserved and the ritual ceremonies continue a tradition established since the 14th century. Such shrines existed during the Three Kingdoms of Korea period but only the shrines for the rulers of Joseon remain. The Jongmyo Shrine was added to the UNESCO World Heritage list in 1995.
When it was built in 1394 by order of King Taejo, it was thought to be one of the longest buildings in Asia, if not the longest. The main hall, known as Jeongjeon, had seven rooms. Each room was reserved for a king and his queen. The complex was expanded by King Sejong who ordered the construction of Yeongnyeongjeon (Hall of Eternal Comfort). This practice of expansion continued, with the growth of the complex moving from west to east, because of the need to house more memorial tablets during the reigns of later kings until there were a total of nineteen rooms. However, during the Seven-Year War, Japanese invaders burned down the original shrine and a new complex was constructed in 1601 CE which has survived to
Itsukushima Shrine (Japanese: 厳島神社 Itsukushima-jinja) is a Shinto shrine on the island of Itsukushima (popularly known as Miyajima) in the city of Hatsukaichi in Hiroshima Prefecture in Japan. The shrine complex is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the Japanese government has designated several buildings and possessions as National Treasures.
The shrine is dedicated to the three daughters of Susano-o no Mikoto, Shinto deity of seas and storms and brother of the great sun deity, Amaterasu (tutelary deity of the Imperial Household). Because the island itself has been considered sacred, in order to maintain its purity commoners were not allowed to set foot on Miyajima through much of its history. In order to allow pilgrims to approach, the shrine was built like a pier over the water, so that it appeared to float, separate from the land, and therefore existed in a liminal state between the sacred and the profane. The shrine's signature red entrance gate, or torii, was built over the water for much the same reason. Commoners had to steer their boats through the torii before approaching the shrine.
Retaining the purity of the shrine is so important that since 1878, no deaths or
Kanangra-Boyd is a national park in New South Wales, Australia, 100 km west of Sydney. It lies to the southwest of and is contiguous with the Blue Mountains National Park, and is part of the Greater Blue Mountains Area World Heritage Site.
Two of the features most spoken of in the Kanangra-Boyd National park are the Kanangra Falls and Kanangra Walls. Kanangra Walls was used in the re-filming of the movie Jedda in 1954.
Kanangra-Boyd National Park is composed of two land units — the elevated, gently undulating Boyd Plateau and the area of creeks, rivers, gorges and ridges into which the plateau falls away. The plateau is traversed by the Kanangra Walls Road and can be accessed either from Oberon or Jenolan Caves. The road leads to Kanangra Walls. There are several well known landmarks in the park, such as Mount Cloudmaker, Kanangra Walls and the Thurat Spires. The word Kanangra is generally held to be a corruption of Gundangura and was called Thurat for some time.
There are several walking tracks and other sites in the park, including the Lookout Walk, the easiest and wheelchair accessible. A 10 minute route along well-formed tracks leads to the first lookout which overlooks the
Morelia is a city and municipality in the north central part of the state of Michoacán in central Mexico. The city is in the Guayangareo Valley and is the capital of the state. The main pre-Hispanic cultures here were the P'urhépecha and the Matlatzinca, but no major cities were founded in the valley during this time. The Spanish took control of the area in the 1520s. The Spanish under Viceroy Antonio de Mendoza founded a settlement here in 1541 with the name of Valladolid, which became rival to the nearby city of Pátzcuaro for dominance in Michoacán. In 1580, this rivalry ended in Valladolid’s favor and it became the capital of the colonial province. After the Mexican War of Independence, the city was renamed Morelia in honor of José María Morelos y Pavón, who hailed from the city. In 1991, the city was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its well preserved colonial buildings and layout of the historic center.
Human settlements in the Guayangareo Valley in which Morelia is located have been dated back as far as the 7th century. Artifacts found here have shown Teotihuacán culture influence on early cultures in this area. In the 12th century, the Tarascos or the P'urhépecha
Nikkō Tōshō-gū (日光東照宮) is a Shinto shrine located in Nikkō, Tochigi Prefecture, Japan. It is part of the "Shrines and Temples of Nikkō", a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Tōshō-gū is dedicated to Tokugawa Ieyasu, the founder of the Tokugawa shogunate. Initially built in 1617, during the Edo period, while Ieyasu's son Hidetada was shogun, it was enlarged during the time of the third shogun, Iemitsu. Ieyasu is enshrined here, and his remains are entombed here.
During the Edo period, the Tokugawa shogunate carried out stately processions from Edo to the Nikkō Tōshō-gū along the Nikkō Kaidō. The shrine's annual spring and autumn festivals reenact these occasions, and are known as "processions of a thousand warriors."
Five structures at Nikkō Tōshō-gū are categorized as National Treasures of Japan, and three more as Important Cultural Properties. Additionally, two swords in the possession of the shrine are National Treasures, and numerous other objects are Important Cultural Properties. Famous buildings at the Tōshō-gū include the richly decorated Yōmeimon, a gate that is also known as "higurashi-no-mon." The latter name means that one could look at it until sundown, and not tire of seeing
Palmyra (Aramaic: ܬܕܡܘܪܬܐ;Hebrew: תדמור; tiḏmor, Greek: Παλμύρα, Arabic: تدمر; Tadmur, /ˌpælˈmaɪərə/) was an ancient city in central Syria. In antiquity, it was an important city located in an oasis 215 km northeast of Damascus and 180 km southwest of the Euphrates at Deir ez-Zor. It had long been a vital caravan stop for travellers crossing the Syrian desert and was known as the Bride of the Desert. The earliest documented reference to the city by its Semitic name Tadmor, Tadmur or Tudmur (which means "the town that repels" in Amorite and "the indomitable town" in Aramaic) is recorded in Babylonian tablets found in Mari.
Though the ancient site fell into disuse after the 16th century, it is still known as Tadmor in Arabic (aka Tedmor), and there is a newer town of the same name next to the ruins. The Palmyrenes constructed a series of large-scale monuments containing funerary art such as limestone slabs with human busts representing the deceased.
Palmyrans bore Aramaic names, and worshipped a variety of deities from Mesopotamia (Marduk and Ruda), Syria (Hadad, Baʿal, Astarte), Arabia (Allāt) and Greece (Athena). Palmyrans were originally speakers of Aramaic but later shifted to
Chapada dos Veadeiros is located in the state of Goias, in the Central West region of Brazil. It is a geographical area filled with breath taking mountains, rivers, and waterfalls. The area is known for the national park of Chapada dos Veadeiros. The national park was created in 1961, it has been named a World Natural Heritage site for being an outstanding source in the area. The 65,515 hectares park is also filled of over one hundred different types of plants and birds. According to NASA, Chapada dos Veadeiros is the earth’s brightest spot that is seen from space.
The most popular activities that are most enjoyed in Chapada dos Veadeiros are: Trekking, Rappel, and camping.
Because Chapada dos Veadeiros is located in a natural area, most of the objects that are sold are home made. Areas such as São Jorge focus more on selling crystals and rocks from the land.
Chapada enjoys tropical weather throughout the year (annual average is 77°F). Between the months of December to February, certain attractions such as the National Park and Waterfalls are closed due to the high amount of rain the area gets, which leads to high rise of the water levels. The best time to visit Chapada dos
A Heraion ( /həˈreɪˌɒn/) or Heraeum ( /həˈriːəm/) refers to a temple dedicated to the Greek goddess Hera.
Several temples of Antiquity, beginning with the Heraion of Samos, were dedicated to Hera. They are dispersed in the Mediterranean Basin and in the Near East:
Heraion is also the name of the sea-side village near the temple dedicated to Hera in Samos.
Hollókő ([ˈholːoːkøː]) is a Palóc ethnographic village in Hungary, part of the World Heritage. Its name means "Raven-stone" in Hungarian.
The village is located in Nógrád county, approximately 91.1 kilometres northeast from Budapest, the capital of Hungary. It lies in a valley of Cserhát Mountains, surrounded by low peaks. The natural environment is protected.
Lushan Quaternary Glaciation National Geopark (simplified Chinese: 庐山第四纪冰川国家地质公园; traditional Chinese: 廬山第四紀冰川國家地質公園) is located in the Mount Lushan of Jiangxi Province in the People's Republic of China, and extends across a 500 km² area to the Lake Poyang basin.
It is a favoured domestic tourist destination. It features exceptional upthrows from the Quaternary age, amidst stunning landscapes: summits and peaks, valleys, gorges, gullies, rock formations, caves and waterfalls. The area also contains large numbers of Taoist and Buddhist temples, as well as several landmarks of Confucianism.
In 1996, Mount Lushan became a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In 2004, the Lushan Quaternary Glaciation National Geopark became a UNESCO Geopark, and is included in UNESCO's International Network of Geoparks.
Monticello is the primary plantation of Thomas Jefferson, who inherited it. He was the principal author of the United States Declaration of Independence, third President of the United States, and founder of the University of Virginia. Located just outside Charlottesville, Virginia in the Piedmont region, the plantation was originally 5,000 acres, with extensive cultivation of tobacco and mixed crops, with labor by slaves. At Jefferson's direction, he was buried on the grounds, an area now designated as the Monticello Cemetery, which is owned by the Monticello Association, a lineage society of his descendants through Martha Wayles Skelton Jefferson.
The house, which Jefferson designed, was based on the neoclassical principles described in the books of the Italian Renaissance architect Andrea Palladio. He reworked it through much of his presidency to include design elements popular in late eighteenth-century Europe. It contains many of his own design solutions. The house is situated on the summit of an 850-foot (260 m)-high peak in the Southwest Mountains south of the Rivanna Gap. Its name comes from the Italian "little mountain." The plantation at full operations included numerous
Pfaueninsel ("Peacock Island") is an island in the River Havel situated in Berlin-Wannsee, in southwestern Berlin, near the borders with Potsdam and Brandenburg. The island is part of the Palaces and Parks of Potsdam and Berlin World Heritage Site and a popular destination for day-trippers. Pfaueninsel is also a nature reserve in accordance with the EU Habitats Directive and a Special Protection Area for wild birds.
In the late 17th century the island was called Kaninchenwerder ("Rabbit Island") after a rabbit breeding station set up by Elector Frederick William I of Brandenburg. From 1685, he gave the chemist Johann Kunckel financial aid to build a glass foundry on the island. After the elector's death in 1688, however, Kunckel gained no further support, and after the foundry was destroyed by a fire, Kunckel left for Stockholm.
The island remained unused for about 100 years until, in 1793, the Prussian king Frederick William II acquired the island for the Hohenzollern dynasty and had the Pfaueninsel castle built for him and his mistress Wilhelmine Enke. The small Lustschloss, in the shape of an artificial ruin, was placed on the western tip of the island, visible from the king's
Sanssouci is the name of the former summer palace of Frederick the Great, King of Prussia, in Potsdam, near Berlin. It is often counted among the German rivals of Versailles. While Sanssouci is in the more intimate Rococo style and is far smaller than its French Baroque counterpart, it too is notable for the numerous temples and follies in the park. The palace was designed by Georg Wenzeslaus von Knobelsdorff between 1745 and 1747 to fulfill King Frederick's need for a private residence where he could relax away from the pomp and ceremony of the Berlin court. The palace's name emphasises this; it is a French phrase (sans souci), which translates as "without concerns", meaning "without worries" or "carefree", symbolising that the palace was a place for relaxation rather than a seat of power. The palace is little more than a large, single-story villa—more like the Château de Marly than Versailles. Containing just ten principal rooms, it was built on the brow of a terraced hill at the centre of the park. The influence of King Frederick's personal taste in the design and decoration of the palace was so great that its style is characterised as "Frederician Rococo", and his feelings for
Tiryns (Ancient Greek: Τίρυνς; Modern Greek: Τίρυνθα) is a Mycenaean archaeological site in Argolis in the Peloponnese, some kilometres north of Nauplion.
Tiryns was a hill fort with occupation ranging back seven thousand years, from before the beginning of the Bronze Age. It reached its height between 1400 and 1200 BC. Its most notable features were its palace, its cyclopean tunnels and especially its walls, which gave the city its Homeric epithet of "mighty walled Tiryns". In ancient times, the city was linked to the myths surrounding Heracles, with some sources citing it as his birthplace.
The famous megaron of the palace of Tiryns has a large reception hall, the main room of which had a throne placed against the right wall and a central hearth bordered by four Minoan-style wooden columns that served as supports for the roof. Two of the three walls of the megaron were incorporated into an archaic temple of Hera.
The site went into decline at the end of the Mycenaean period, and was completely deserted by the time Pausanias visited in the 2nd century AD. This site was excavated by Heinrich Schliemann in 1884-1885, and is the subject of ongoing excavations by the German
Chavín de Huántar is an archaeological site containing ruins and artifacts constructed beginning at least by 1200 BCE and occupied by later cultures until around 400-500 BCE by the Chavín, a major pre-Inca culture. The site is located 250 kilometers (160 mi) north of Lima, Peru, at an elevation of 3,180 meters (10,430 ft), east of the Cordillera Blanca at the start of the Conchucos Valley. Chavín de Huántar has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Some of the Chavín relics from this archaeological site are on display in the Museo de la Nación in Lima and the Museo Nacional de Chavín in Chavin itself.
Occupation at Chavín de Huántar has been carbon dated to at least 3000 BCE, with ceremonial center activity occurring primarily toward the end of the second millennium, and through the middle of the first millennium BCE. While the fairly large population was based on an agricultural economy, the city's location at the headwaters of the Marañón River, between the coast and the jungle, made it an ideal location for the dissemination and collection of both ideas and material goods. This archeological site is a large ceremonial center that has revealed a great deal about the
The Protestant Church of the Redeemer (German: Heilandskirche, Latin: S. Ecclesiae sanctissimi Salvatoris in portu sacro) is located in the south of the village of Sacrow, which since 1939 is incorporated to Potsdam, the capital of the German Bundesland of Brandenburg. It is famous for its Italian Romanesque Revival architecture with a separate campanile (bell tower) and for its localization. It has been built in 1844. The design was based on drawings by King Frederick William IV of Prussia, called the Romantic on the Throne. The building was realized by Ludwig Persius, the king's favorite architect.
The church is situated on the bank of lake Jungfernsee, a part of river Havel, 300 metres south of Sacrow Manor at the edge of its park, designed and expanded in the 1840s by landscape architect Peter Joseph Lenné. Both church and manor were restored in the 1990s. They are part of Potsdam Havel Landscape. This area of lakes, forests, parks, and castles has been classified as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Though the direct distance from Potsdam City across the Jungfernsee is no more than 1.2 km (2/3 mile), the distance by road is more than 10 km (6.2 mi).
Little is known about the
Cienfuegos is a city on the southern coast of Cuba, capital of Cienfuegos Province. It is located about 250 km (160 mi) from Havana, and has a population of 150,000. The city is dubbed La Perla del Sur (Pearl of the South). Cienfuegos literally translates to "Hundred fires".
Near the entrance to Bahia de Cienfuegos (bahia meaning "bay") is Castillo de Jagua (full name Castillo de Nuestra Señora de los Angeles de Jagua), a fortress erected in 1745 for protection against Caribbean pirates.
Cienfuegos, one of the chief seaports of Cuba, is a center of the sugar trade, as well as coffee and tobacco. While sugarcane is the chief crop, local farmers grow coffee.
The downtown contains 6 buildings from 1819–50, 327 buildings from 1851–1900, and 1188 buildings from the 20th century. There is no other place in the Caribbean which contains such a remarkable cluster of Neoclassical structures.
In 2004, the municipality of Cienfuegos had a population of 163,824. With a total area of 333 km (129 sq mi), it has a population density of 492.0 /km (1,274 /sq mi).
The area was called the Cacicazgo de Jagua by the early Spaniards, and was settled by indigenous people.
The city was settled by French
The Saline Royale (Royal Saltworks) is a historical building at Arc-et-Senans in the department of Doubs, eastern France. It is next to the Forest of Chaux and about 35 kilometers from Besançon. The architect was Claude-Nicolas Ledoux (1736–1806), a prominent Parisian architect of the time. The work is an important example of an early Enlightenment project in which the architect based his design on a philosophy that favored arranging buildings according to a rational geometry and a hierarchical relation between the parts of the project.
The Institut Claude-Nicolas Ledoux has taken on the task of conservator and is managing the site as a monument. UNESCO added the "Salines Royales" to its List of World Heritage Sites in 1982.
Today, the site is mostly open to the public. It includes, in the building the coopers used, displays by the Ledoux Museum of other futuristic projects that were never built. Also, the salt production buildings house temporary exhibitions.
The train line from Besançon to Bourg-en-Bresse passes just next to the salt works. The station for Arc-et-Senans is only a few dozen meters from the site.
In the 18th century salt was an essential and valuable commodity. At
San Agustín is a town and municipality in the southern Colombian Department of Huila. The town is located 227 km away from the capital of the Department, Neiva. Population is around 30,000. The village was originally founded in 1752 by Alejo Astudillo but attacks by indigenous people destroyed it. The present village was founded in 1790 by Lucas de Herazo and Mendigaña.
The area is very well known for its pre-Colombian archaeological sites, which generates significant revenue to the economy due to the high volume of tourists, both Colombian and foreigners. These sites form a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The mean temperature year round is 18°C.
The Selous Game Reserve is one of the largest faunal reserves of the world, located in the south of Tanzania. It was named after Englishman Sir Frederick Selous, a famous big game hunter and early conservationist, who died at Beho Beho in this territory in 1917 while fighting against the Germans during World War I. Scottish explorer and cartographer Keith Johnston also died at Beho Beho in 1879 while leading a RSGS expedition to the Great Lakes of Africa with Joseph Thomson. The Selous was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1982 due to the diversity of its wildlife and undisturbed nature.
The reserve covers a total area of 54,600 km (21,100 sq mi) and has additional buffer zones. Within the reserve no permanent human habitation or permanent structures are permitted. All (human) entry and exit is carefully controlled by the Wildlife Division of the Tanzanian Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism. Some of the typical animals of the savanna (for example elephants, hippopotami, African Wild Dog, cape buffalo and crocodiles) can be found in this park in larger numbers than in any other African game reserve or national park.
The area was first designated a protected area in
Yinxu (Chinese: 殷墟; pinyin: Yīnxū; literally "Yin Ruins"; IPA: [ínɕý]) is the ruins of Yin, the last capital of China's Shang Dynasty. The capital served 255 years for 12 kings in 8 generations.
Rediscovered in 1899, it is one of the oldest and largest archeological sites in China and is one of the historical capitals of China and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is located in the very north of Henan province, close to the borders with Hebei and Shanxi, in the modern city of Anyang, and is open to the public.
It is famous as the original source of oracle bones and oracle bone script, the earliest recorded form of Chinese writing.
At the beginning of the 14th century BC King Pangeng of the Shang Dynasty moved his capital from Yān (present day Qufu in Shandong Province), to a village that had existed since 5,000 BCE on the banks of the Huan River. This new city was known as Yin (殷), and from that point on the dynasty that founded it would also be known as the Yin Dynasty. The name "Yin" is an ancient term referring to "vibrant music-making".
King Wu Ding continued to use Yin as his capital and launched numerous military campaigns from this base (many led by one of his own wives Fu
Byōdō-in (平等院) is a Buddhist temple in the city of Uji in Kyoto Prefecture, Japan. It is jointly a temple of the Jōdo-shū (Pure Land) and Tendai-shū sects.
This temple was originally built in 998 in the Heian period as a rural villa of Fujiwara no Michinaga, one of the most powerful members of the Fujiwara clan. This villa was changed to a Buddhist temple by Fujiwara no Yorimichi in 1052. The most famous building in the temple is the Phoenix Hall (鳳凰堂 Hōō-dō) or the Amida Hall, constructed in 1053. It is the only remaining original building, surrounded by a scenic pond; additional buildings making up the compound were burnt down during a civil war in 1336.
The main building in Byōdō-in, the Phoenix Hall consists of a central hall, flanked by twin wing corridors on both sides of the central hall, and a tail corridor. The central hall houses an image of Amida Buddha. The roof of the hall displays statues of the Chinese phoenix, called hōō in Japanese.
The Phoenix Hall, completed in 1053, is the exemplar of Fujiwara Amida halls. It consists of a main rectangular structure flanked by two L-shaped wing corridors and a tail corridor, set at the edge of a large artificial pond. Though its
Carcassonne (French pronunciation: [kaʁ.ka.sɔn]; Occitan: Carcassona) is a fortified French town in the Aude department, of which it is the prefecture, in the former province of Languedoc.
It is divided into the fortified Cité de Carcassonne and the more expansive lower city, the ville basse. Carcassone was founded by the Visigoths in the fifth century, though the Romans had fortified the settlement earlier. The fortress, which was thoroughly restored in 1853 by the theorist and architect Eugène Viollet-le-Duc, was added to the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites in 1997. The folk etymology – involving a châtelaine named Carcas, a ruse ending a siege and the joyous ringing of bells ("Carcas sona") – though memorialized in a neo-Gothic sculpture of Mme. Carcas on a column near the Narbonne Gate, is of modern invention. The name can be derived as a hyperbole of the name Carcas. Similarly in the Italian language, there are derived names like Castellino (little castle) – Castello – Castellone (big castle), or Ombrellino (small umbrella) – Ombrello – Ombrellone (large umbrella). A double 's' in the name appears for phonetic reasons, otherwise as a self standing 's' it would be
The Historic Areas of Istanbul were added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1985.
It includes locations such as the Galata Bridge, the Seraglio Point where the Topkapı Palace, the Hagia Sophia, the Sultan Ahmed Mosque, the Yeni Mosque near the Galata Bridge, the Beyazıt Tower and the Süleymaniye Mosque.
The World Heritage site covers four zones, illustrating the major phases of the city's history using its most prestigious monuments:
Noto (Sicilian: Notu, Latin: Neetum and Netum) is a city and comune in the Province of Syracuse, Sicily, Italy. Its located 32 km southwest of the city of Syracuse at the foot of the Iblean Mountains and gives its name to the surrounding area, Val di Noto. In 2002 Noto and its church were declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The older town, Noto Antica, lies 8 km directly north on Mount Alveria. It was ancient Netum, a city of Sicel origin, left to Hiero II by the Romans by the treaty of 263 BCE and mentioned by Cicero as a foederala citilas (Verr. v. 51, 133), and by Pliny as Latinae conditionis (Hist. Nat. iii. 8. 14). According to legend, Daedalus stopped here after his flight over the Ionian Sea, as well as Hercules, after his seventh task.
In the Roman era, it opposed praetor Verres. In 866 it was conquered by the Arabs, who elevated to a capital city of one of three districts of the island (the Val di Noto). Later it was a rich Norman city.
In the 16th and 17th centuries, the city brought forth several notable intellectual figures, including Giovanni Aurispa, jurists Andrea Barbazio and Antonio Corsetto, as well as the architect Matteo Carnelivari and the minor composer
San Leucio is a frazione of the comune of Caserta, in the region of Campania in southern Italy. It is most notable for a resort developed around an old silk factory, included in the UNESCO World Heritage sites list in 1997.
It is located 3.5 km northwest of Caserta, at 145 m above sea level.
In 1750 Charles VII of Naples, advised by minister Bernardo Tanucci, selected this place, originally the site of a royal hunting lodge for the Acquaviva family (now restored, and known as Palazzo del Belvedere), for an unusual social and tecnological experiment, a different model of production based on technical innovation and alert to the needs of workers. In its early days, San Leucio resort was a place for pleasure and a royal hunting preserve, built on the ruins of Saint Leucio church, where an aqueduct carried water to the waterfalls of the Royal Caserta Palace, designed by Vanvitelli. The son of Charles, Ferdinand I, had a hunting lodge built for himself on this site. He was a very skillful hunter who disliked the pleasures and luxury of court life. It was here that Charles and the young king Ferdinand built a silk factory. The complex was transformed into a silk production site and
Granada (Spanish pronunciation: [ɡɾaˈnaða]) is a city and the capital of the province of Granada, in the autonomous community of Andalucia, Spain. Granada is located at the foot of the Sierra Nevada mountains, at the confluence of three rivers, the Beiro, the Darro and the Genil. It sits at an elevation of 738 metres above sea level, yet is only one hour from the Mediterranean coast, the Costa Tropical. Nearby is the Sierra Nevada Ski Station, where the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships 1996 were held.
In the 2005 national census, the population of the city of Granada proper was 236,982, and the population of the entire urban area was estimated to be 472,638, ranking as the 13th-largest urban area of Spain. About 3.3% of the population did not hold Spanish citizenship, the largest number of these people (31%) coming from South America. Its nearest airport is Federico García Lorca Airport Granada-Jaén Airport.
The Alhambra, a Moorish citadel and palace, is in Granada. It is the most renowned building of the Andalusian Islamic historical legacy with its many cultural attractions that make Granada a popular destination among the touristic cities of Spain. The Almohad influence on
Great Zimbabwe is a ruined city that was the capital of the Kingdom of Zimbabwe during the country’s Late Iron Age. The monument first began to be constructed in the 11th century and continued to be built until the 14th century, spanning an area of 722 hectares (1,780 acres) which, at its peak, could have housed up to 18,000 people. Great Zimbabwe acted as a royal palace for the Zimbabwean monarch and would have been used as the seat of their political power. One of its most prominent features were its walls, some of which were over five metres high and which were constructed without mortar. Eventually the city was abandoned and fell into ruin.
The ruins were first encountered by Europeans in the late 19th century with investigation of the site starting in 1871. The monument caused great controversy amongst the archaeological world, with political pressure being put upon archaeologists by the government of Rhodesia to deny its construction by black people. Great Zimbabwe has since been adopted as a national monument by the Zimbabwean government, with the modern state being named after it. The word "Great" distinguishes the site from the many hundreds of small ruins, known as
Jasper National Park is the largest national park in the Canadian Rockies, spanning 10,878 km² (4200 mi²). It is located in the province of Alberta, north of Banff National Park and west of the City of Edmonton. The park includes the glaciers of the Columbia Icefield, hot springs, lakes, waterfalls and mountains. Wildlife in the park includes elk, caribou, moose, mule deer, white-tailed deer, mountain goat, bighorn sheep, grizzly bear, black bear, beaver, Rocky Mountain pika, hoary marmot, grey wolf, mountain lion, and wolverine.
Jasper was named after Jasper Hawes, who operated a trading post in the region for the North West Company. Before this it was referred to as Fitzhugh. The park was established on September 14, 1907 as Jasper Forest Park, and was granted national park status in 1930, with the passing of the National Parks Act.
In 2011, Jasper National Park had 1,916,677 visitors.
This park was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1984, together with the other national and provincial parks that form the Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks, for the mountain landscapes containing mountain peaks, glaciers, lakes, waterfalls, canyons, and limestone caves as well as fossils found
Kalwaria Zebrzydowska [kalˈvarja zɛbʐɨˈdɔfska] is a town in southern Poland with 4,429 inhabitants (as of 2007). It is situated in the Lesser Poland Voivodeship (since 1999); previously it was in the Bielsko-Biała Voivodeship (1975–1998).
The town is named after the religious complex (calvary) founded by Governor of Kraków Mikołaj Zebrzydowski on December 1, 1602. The complex, which is known as the Kalwaria Zebrzydowska park (Kalwaria Zebrzydowska: the Mannerist Architectural and Park Landscape Complex and Pilgrimage Park), was added in 1999 to the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites.
The city of Zebrzydów was established in 1617 in order to house the growing number of pilgrims visiting the religious complex. The city rights were expanded and the city remapped by Jan Zebrzydowski in 1640, gaining the name Nowy Zebrzydów (New Zebrzydów). Around 1715 the city suffered a large fire, and was subsequently rebuilt, by its then owner, Józef Czartoryski. The Czartoryski family palace was built in 1729-1731 (in the 1980s it was reconfigured into the current seminary.) The Habsburg Austrian Empire annexed the city as part of its invasion of Poland during the First Partition of Poland in
Lake Baikal (Russian: о́зеро Байка́л, tr. Ozero Baykal; IPA: [ˈozʲɪrə bɐjˈkal]; Buryat: Байгал нуур, Mongolian: Байгал нуур, Baygal nuur, meaning "nature lake"; Kyrgyz: Байкол, meaning "rich lake") is the world's oldest lake, at 25 million years.
Located in the south of the Russian region of Siberia, between Irkutsk Oblast to the northwest and the Buryat Republic to the southeast, it is the most voluminous freshwater lake in the world, containing roughly 20% of the world's unfrozen surface fresh water.
At 1,642 m (5,387 ft), Lake Baikal is the deepest and among the clearest of all lakes in the world. Similar to Lake Tanganyika, Lake Baikal was formed as an ancient rift valley, having the typical long crescent shape with a surface area of 31,722 km (12,248 sq mi). Baikal is home to more than 1,700 species of plants and animals, two thirds of which can be found nowhere else in the world and was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996. It is also home to Buryat tribes who reside on the eastern side of Lake Baikal, rearing goats, camels, cattle and sheep, where the regional average temperatures vary from a minimum of −19 °C (−2 °F) in winter to maximum of 14 °C (57 °F) in summer.
The Leshan Giant Buddha (simplified Chinese: 乐山大佛; traditional Chinese: 樂山大佛; pinyin: Lèshān Dàfó) was built during the Tang Dynasty (618–907AD). It is carved out of a cliff face that lies at the confluence of the Minjiang, Dadu and Qingyi rivers in the southern part of Sichuan province in China, near the city of Leshan. The stone sculpture faces Mount Emei, with the rivers flowing below his feet. It is the largest Buddha in the world and it is by far the tallest pre-modern statue in the world.
The Mount Emei Scenic Area, including Leshan Giant Buddha Scenic Area has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1996. It was not damaged by the 2008 Sichuan earthquake.
Construction was started in 713, led by a Chinese monk named Haitong. According to legend, there was a river monster that lived on the confluence of the rivers. The monster often caused floods that capsized passing boats. He hoped that the Buddha would calm the turbulent waters that plagued the shipping vessels traveling down the river. When funding for the project was threatened, he is said to have gouged out his own eyes to show his piety and sincerity. After his death, however, the construction was stuck due to
Popocatépetl (Spanish [popoka'tepet͡ɬ] Nahuatl [popoːka'tepeːt͡ɬ]) is an active volcano located in the states of Puebla, State of Mexico, and Morelos, in Central Mexico, and lies in the eastern half of the Trans-Mexican volcanic belt. At 5,426 m (17,802 ft) it is the second highest peak in Mexico, after the Pico de Orizaba at 5,636 m (18,491 ft).
It is linked to the Iztaccihuatl volcano to the north by the high saddle known as the Paso de Cortés.
Popocatepetl is 70 km (43 mi) southeast of Mexico City, from where it can be seen regularly, depending on atmospheric conditions. Until recently, the volcano was one of three tall peaks in Mexico to contain glaciers, the others being Iztaccihuatl and Pico de Orizaba. In the 1990s, the glaciers such as Glaciar Norte (North Glacier) greatly decreased in size, partly due to warmer temperatures but largely due to increased volcanic activity. By early 2001, Popocatepetl's glaciers had become extinct; ice remained on the volcano, but no longer displayed the characteristic features of glaciers such as crevasses. Magma erupting from Popocatepetl has historically been predominantly andesitic, but it has also erupted large volumes of dacite. Magma
The Shalimar Gardens (Punjabi, Urdu: شالیمار باغ), sometimes written Shalamar Gardens, is a Pakistani garden and it was built by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in Lahore, modern day Pakistan. Construction began in 1641 AD (1051 AH) and was completed the following year. The project management was carried out under the superintendence of Khalilullah Khan, a noble of Shah Jahan's court, in cooperation with Ali Mardan Khan and Mulla Alaul Maulk Tuni. The Shalimar Gardens are located near Baghbanpura along the Grand Trunk Road some 5 kilometers northeast of the main Lahore city. There are five geographical sources of inspiration for Shalimar Gardens: Central Asia, Kashmir, West Punjab, Persia, and the Delhi Sultanate.
The site of the Shalimar Gardens originally belonged to one of the noble Zaildar families in the region, well known as Mian Family Baghbanpura. The family was also given the Royal title of 'Mian' by the Mughal Emperor, for its services to the Empire. Mian Muhammad Yusuf, then the head of the Mian family, donated the site of Ishaq Pura to the Emperor Shah Jahan, after pressure was placed on the family by the royal engineers who wished to build on the site due to its good
The Taj Mahal ( /ˈtɑːdʒ/ or /ˈtɑːʒ məˈhɑːl/; Hindi: ताज महल, from Persian/Urdu: تاج محل "crown of palaces", pronounced [ˈt̪aːdʒ mɛˈɦɛl]; also "the Taj") is a white marble mausoleum located in Agra, Uttar Pradesh, India. It was built by Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his third wife, Mumtaz Mahal. The Taj Mahal is widely recognized as "the jewel of Muslim art in India and one of the universally admired masterpieces of the world's heritage".
Taj Mahal is regarded by many as the finest example of Mughal architecture, a style that combines elements from Persian, Ottoman Turkish and Indian architectural styles.
In 1983, the Taj Mahal became a UNESCO World Heritage Site. While the white domed marble mausoleum is the most familiar component of the Taj Mahal, it is actually an integrated complex of structures. The construction began around 1632 and was completed around 1653, employing thousands of artisans and craftsmen. The construction of the Taj Mahal was entrusted to a board of architects under imperial supervision, including Abd ul-Karim Ma'mur Khan, Makramat Khan, and Ustad Ahmad Lahauri. Lahauri is generally considered to be the principal designer.
In 1631, Shah Jahan,
The Vall de Boí (Catalan pronunciation: [ˈbaʎ də βuˈi], locally: [ˈbaʎ de βoˈi]) is a narrow, steep-sided valley and a small municipality in the province of Lleida, in the autonomous community of Catalonia, northern Spain. It lies in the northeastern corner of the comarca of Alta Ribagorça, on the edges of the Pyrenees. It is the largest municipality of the region, with its main town being Barruera.
The valley is best known for its nine Early Romanesque churches, making it the site of the densest concentration of Romanesque architecture in Europe. It was designated as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO on 30 November 2000. The valley also includes the highest ski resort in the Pyrenees, at Boí-Taüll, and borders the Aigüestortes i Estany de Sant Maurici National Park which lies to the northeast.
The Moorish conquest of Spain did not penetrate the high valleys of the Pyrenees. The first Christian counties in the region were set out in the 9th century, in which the local counts paid little heed to their nominal Frankish overlords. The population was largely Basque.
The valley first belonged to the county of Toulouse, to which was joined the County of Ribagorza. In the 11th century, the
Franklin-Gordon Wild Rivers is a national park in Tasmania, Australia, 117 km west of Hobart. It is named after the two main river systems lying within the bounds of the park - the Franklin River and the Gordon River.
The Franklin-Gordon Wild Rivers National Park lies between the Central Highlands and West Coast Range of Tasmania in the heart of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area. It is dissected by the only road to pass through this area - the Lyell Highway.
The genesis of the Wild Rivers National Park was in the earlier Frenchmans Cap National Park which had the Franklin River as its boundary on the northern and western borders. Frenchmans Cap is a dominant feature in the region, and can be seen on the skyline from the west and north of the park.
The Gordon and Franklin Rivers were the subject of one of Australia's largest conservation battles - the battle to save the Gordon River from being dammed for a hydro-electric scheme.
The Franklin Dam was part of a proposed hydro-electric power scheme that had been in the plans of The Hydro for some time. But it was the enthusiastic endorsement by Robin Gray's Liberal Government which would have seen the river flooded. It
The Belvedere is a historical building complex in Vienna, Austria, consisting of two Baroque palaces the Upper and Lower Belvedere, the Orangery, and the Palace Stables. The buildings are set in a Baroque park landscape in the 3rd district of the city, south-east of its centre. It houses the Belvedere museum. The grounds are set on a gentle gradient and include decorative tiered fountains and cascades, Baroque sculptures, and majestic wrought iron gates. The Baroque palace complex was built as a summer residence for Prince Eugene of Savoy.
The Belvedere was built during a period of extensive constructions in Vienna, which at the time was both the imperial capital and home to the ruling dynasty. This period of prosperity followed on from the commander-in-chief Prince Eugene of Savoy's successful conclusion of a series of wars against the Ottoman Empire.
On 30 November 1697, one year after commencing with the construction of the Stadtpalais, Prince Eugene purchased a sizable plot of land south of the Rennweg, the main road to Hungary. Plans for the Belvedere garden complex were drawn up immediately. The prince chose Johann Lukas von Hildebrandt as the chief architect for this project
Las Médulas (As Médulas or As Meduas in Galician language) is a historical site near the town of Ponferrada in the region of El Bierzo (province of León, Castile and León, Spain), which used to be the most important gold mine in the Roman Empire. Las Médulas Cultural Landscape is listed by the UNESCO as one of the World Heritage Sites.
The spectacular landscape of Las Médulas resulted from the ruina montium, a Roman mining technique described by Pliny the Elder in 77 AD. The technique employed was a type of hydraulic mining which involved undermining a mountain with large quantities of water. The water was supplied by interbasin transfer. At least seven long aqueducts tapped the streams of the La Cabrera district (where the rainfall in the mountains is relatively high) at a range of altitudes. The same aqueducts were used to wash the extensive gold deposits.
The area Hispania Tarraconensis had been invaded in 25 BC by the emperor Augustus. Prior to the Roman conquest the indigenous inhabitants obtained gold from alluvial deposits. Large-scale production did not begin until the second half of the 1st century AD.
Pliny the Elder, who was a procurator in the region in 74 AD, described
Nakagusuku Castle (中城城, Nakagusuku-jō) is a gusuku in the village of Kitanakagusuku, Okinawa Prefecture, Japan. It is currently in ruins. The legendary Ryukyuan commander, Gosamaru, built the fortress in the early 15th century to defend against attacks from the east by Lord Amawari of Katsuren Castle. The six courtyards of this fortress with stacked stone walls make it a prime example of a gusuku.
Tsarskoye Selo (Russian: Ца́рское Село́; [ˈt͡sarskəjɪ sʲɪˈlo] ( listen); "Tsar's Village") is the town containing a former Russian residence of the imperial family and visiting nobility, located 24 kilometres (15 mi) south from the center of St. Petersburg. It is now part of the town of Pushkin and of the World Heritage Site Saint Petersburg and Related Groups of Monuments.
In the 17th century, the estate belonged to a Swedish noble. Its original Finnish name is usually translated as "a higher ground". Max Vasmer, on the other hand, derives this toponym from the Finnish word for island, "saari". In any case, the Finnish name came to be pronounced by the 18th-century Russians as "Sarskoye Selo", later changed to "Tsarskoye Selo" (i.e., "the royal village").
In 1708, Peter the Great gave the estate to his wife, the future Empress Catherine I, as a present. She founded the Blagoveschensky (Annunciation) church there in 1724, and changed the name of the settlement to Blagoveschenskoye, but this did not stand the test of time and quickly went out of use.
It was Catherine I who started to develop the place as a royal country residence. Her daughter, Empress Elizabeth and her architect
Veliky Novgorod (Russian: Великий Новгород; IPA: [vʲɪˈlʲikʲɪj ˈnovɡərət]), or Novgorod Veliky, or just Novgorod, is one of the most important historic cities in Russia which serves as the administrative center of Novgorod Oblast. It is situated on the M10 federal highway connecting Moscow and St. Petersburg. The city lies along the Volkhov River just downstream from its outflow from Lake Ilmen. Population: 218,717 (2010 Census); 216,856 (2002 Census); 229,126 (1989 Census).
Novgorod is among the oldest cities of Russia, founded in the 9th or 10th century.
The Sofia First Chronicle first mentions it in 859; the Novgorod First Chronicle mentions it first in the year 862, when it was allegedly already a major station on the trade route from the Baltics to Byzantium.
Archaeological excavations in the middle to late 20th century, however, have found cultural layers dating back only to the late 10th century, the time of the Christianization of Rus' and a century after it was allegedly founded, suggesting that the chronicle entries mentioning Novgorod in the 850s or 860s are later interpolations.
The Varangian name of the city Holmgård/Holmgard (Holmgarðr or Holmgarðir) is mentioned in
San Francisco de Campeche (pronounced: [san fɾanˈsisko de kamˈpetʃe]) (Ahk'ìin Pech - /aχkʼiːn˥˧ pʰetʃ/ in Yucatec Maya) is the capital city of the Mexican state of Campeche, located at 19°51′N 90°32′W / 19.85°N 90.53°W / 19.85; -90.53, on the shore of the Bay of Campeche of the Gulf of Mexico. The city's population at the 2005 census was 211,671 people. The municipality for which it serves as the municipal seat had a population of 238,850.
The city was founded in 1540 by Spanish conquistadores as San Francisco de Campeche atop the pre-existing Maya city of Canpech or Kimpech. The Pre-Columbian city was described as having 3,000 houses and various monuments, of which little trace remains.
The city retains many of the old colonial Spanish city walls and fortifications which protected the city (not always successfully) from pirates and buccaneers. The state of preservation and quality of its architecture earned it the status of a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1999. Originally, the Spaniards lived inside the walled city, while the natives lived in the surrounding barrios of San Francisco, Guadalupe and San Román. These barrios still retain their original churches; the one in
Doñana National Park is located in Andalusia, in the provinces of Huelva and Seville, and covers 543 km²(337.41 mi²), of which 135 km²(83.89 mi²) are a protected area. The park is an area of marsh, shallow streams, and sand dunes in Las Marismas, the Guadalquivir River Delta region where it flows into the Atlantic Ocean. The original area was established in 1963 when the World Wildlife Fund joined with the Spanish government and purchased a section of marshes to protect it. There has been a constant threat to the eco-system, that of drainage of the marshes, the use of river water to boost agricultural production by irrigating land along the coast, and the expansion of tourist facilities.
In 2011, an archeological team proposed that the lost city of Atlantis was once located in what are now the swamps of the Doñana National Park having been destroyed by a tsunami.
In 1989 the surroundings of the national park were given more protection when a buffer zone was declared a natural park under the management of the regional government. The two parks, national and natural, have since been classified as a single natural landscape.
In 1994 UNESCO designated the park a World Heritage Site.
For the town, see Geghard, Armenia.
The monastery of Geghard (Armenian: Գեղարդ, meaning spear) is a unique architectural construction in the Kotayk province of Armenia, being partially carved out of the adjacent mountain, surrounded by cliffs. It is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
While the main chapel was built in 1215, the monastery complex was founded in the 4th century by Gregory the Illuminator at the site of a sacred spring inside a cave. The monastery had thus been originally named Ayrivank, meaning "the Monastery of the Cave". The name commonly used for the monastery today, Geghard, or more fully Geghardavank (Գեղարդավանք), meaning "the Monastery of the Spear", originates from the spear which had wounded Jesus at the Crucifixion, allegedly brought to Armenia by Apostle Jude, called here Thaddeus, and stored amongst many other relics. Now it is displayed in the Echmiadzin treasury.
The spectacular towering cliffs surrounding the monastery are part of the Azat river gorge, and are included together with the monastery in the World Heritage Site listing. Some of the churches within the monastery complex are entirely dug out of the cliff rocks, others are little more
Goiás (also known as Goiás Velho, Old Goiás) is a small city and municipality in the state of Goiás in Brazil. The population was 24,072 (2007 count) in a total area of 3,108 km² (2002). It is the former capital of the state and preserves much of its colonial heritage. In 2002, it became a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
It was the old state capital of Goiás until 1937, when the government seat was transferred to the recently built Goiânia. It was founded by the famed Bandeirante explorer Bartolomeu Bueno da Silva, nicknamed the Anhangüera, and was called in colonial times Vila Boa de Goyaz ("good village of Goias" in archaic Portuguese). Given its historical importance, the historical center of Goiás was included on UNESCO's World Heritage list in 2001.
Access can be made by highways GO-070 / Goianira / Inhumas / Itaberaí / BR-070.Sepin
The topography of the municipality is characterized by rugged terrain and several rivers. The Serra Dourada Mountains are nearby. Waterfalls and rapids are easily accessible from the center and several of them have beaches open to the public. The most important are:
Rivers that cross the municipality are:
The economy of
Hildesheim [ˈhɪl.dəs.ˌhaɪ̯m] ( listen) is a city in Lower Saxony, Germany. It is located in the district of Hildesheim, about 30 km southeast of Hanover on the banks of the Innerste river, which is a small tributary of the Leine river. It may be reached from Autobahn A7, which links Kassel, Göttingen and Hannover, and routes 1, 6, 243 and 494.
Hildesheim, one of the oldest cities in the North of Germany, became the seat of the Bishopric of Hildesheim in 815 and may have been founded when the bishop moved from Elze to the Innerste ford, where it was an important market on the Hellweg trade route. The settlement the cathedral very quickly developed into a town which was awarded market rights by King Otto III in 983. Originally the market was held in a street called Old Market (Alter Markt) which still exists today. The first market place was laid out around Saint Andrew's Church. When the city grew further, a bigger market place became necessary. The present market place of Hildesheim was laid out at the beginning of the 13th century when the city had about 5,000 inhabitants. When Hildesheim obtained city rights in 1249, it was one of the biggest cities in Northern Germany. For four
Saint Catherine's Monastery (Greek: Μονὴ τῆς Ἁγίας Αἰκατερίνης Monì tìs Agìas Ekaterìnis), in Arabic دير القدّيسة كاترينا commonly known as Santa Katarina lies on the Sinai Peninsula, at the mouth of a gorge at the foot of Mount Sinai in the city of Saint Catherine in Egypt's South Sinai Governorate. The monastery is Orthodox and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. According to the UNESCO report (60100 ha / Ref: 954), this monastery is one of the oldest working Christian monasteries in the world together with the Monastery of Saint Anthony, situated across the Red Sea in the desert south of Cairo, which also lays claim to that title. In the area around the monastery, a small town has grown, with hotels and swimming pools, called Saint Katherine City.
According to tradition, Catherine of Alexandria was a Christian martyr initially sentenced to death on the wheel. However, when this failed to kill her, she was beheaded. According to tradition, angels took her remains to Mount Sinai. Around the year 800, monks from the Sinai Monastery found her remains. Though it is commonly known as Saint Catherine's, the full, official name of the monastery is the Sacred and Imperial Monastery of the
Skocjan Caves is a cave system in Slovenia. Due to its exceptional significance, Škocjan Caves was entered on UNESCO’s list of natural and cultural world heritage sites in 1986. International scientific circles have thus acknowledged the importance of the caves as one of the natural treasures of planet Earth. Ranking among the most important caves in the world, Škocjan Caves represents the most significant underground phenomena in both the Karst region and Slovenia. Following its independence, the Republic of Slovenia committed itself to actively protecting the Škocjan Caves area; for this reason, it established the Škocjan Caves Regional Park, Slovenia and its Managing Authority, the Škocjan Caves Park Public Service Agency.
Škocjan Caves is, above all, a natural phenomenon of global significance, ranking side by side with the Grand Canyon, the Great Barrier Reef, the Galapagos Islands, Mount Everest, and others. Ranking among the most important caves in the world, Škocjan Caves represents the most significant underground phenomena in both the Karst region and Slovenia. Škocjan Caves was also entered on the List of Ramsar wetlands of international importance on 18 May 1999.
Villa Romana del Casale (Sicilian: Villa Rumana dû Casali) is a Roman villa built in the first quarter of the 4th century and located about 3 km outside the town of Piazza Armerina, Sicily, southern Italy. Containing the richest, largest and most complex collection of Roman mosaics in the world, it is one of 44 UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Italy..
The Villa was constructed (on the remains of an older villa) in the first quarter of the 4th century AD, probably as the center of a huge latifundium (agricultural estate) covering the surrounding area. How long the villa kept this role is not known, maybe for less than 150 years. The complex remained inhabited and a village grew around it, named Platia (derived from the word palatium (palace). The villa was damaged and perhaps destroyed during the domination of the Vandals and the Visigoths. The outbuildings remained in use, at least in part, during the Byzantine and Arab periods. The site was abandoned in the 12th century AD when a landslide covered the villa. Survivors moved to the current location of Piazza Armerina.
The villa was almost entirely forgotten, although some of the tallest parts of the remains were always above ground.
The Wieliczka Salt Mine (Polish: Kopalnia soli Wieliczka), located in the town of Wieliczka in southern Poland, lies within the Kraków metropolitan area. The mine, built in the 13th century, produced table salt continuously until 2007, as one of the world's oldest salt mines still in operation. From its beginning and throughout its existence, the Royal mine was run by the Żupy krakowskie Salt Mines. Commercial mining was discontinued in 1996 due to low salt prices and mine flooding.
The mine's attractions include dozens of statues, three chapels and an entire cathedral that has been carved out of the rock salt by the miners. The oldest sculptures are augmented by the new carvings by contemporary artists. About 1.2 million people visit the Wieliczka Salt Mine annually.
The Wieliczka salt mine reaches a depth of 327 metres (1,073 ft) and is over 300 kilometres (190 mi) long. The rock salt is naturally gray in various shades, resembling unpolished granite rather than the white or crystalline look that many visitors may expect. During World War II, the shafts were used by the occupying Germans as an ad-hoc facility for various war-related industries. The mine features an underground
Serra da Capivara National Park (Portuguese: Parque Nacional Serra da Capivara, IPA: [ˈpaʁki nasjõˈnaw ˈsɛʁɐ dɐ kɐpiˈvaɾɐ], locally [ˈsɛhɐ da kapiˈvaɾɐ]) is a national park in the Northeastern region of Brazil. It has many prehistoric paintings. The park was created to protect the prehistoric artifacts and paintings found there. It became a World Heritage Site in 1991. Its head archaeologist is Niède Guidon. Its best known archaeological site is Pedra Furada.
It is located in northeast state of Piauí, between latitudes 8° 26' 50" and 8° 54' 23" south and longitudes 42° 19' 47" and 42° 45' 51" west. It falls within the municipal areas of São Raimundo Nonato, São João do Piauí, Coronel José Dias and Canto do Buriti. It has an area of 1291.4 square kilometres (319,000 acres). The area has the largest concentration of prehistoric small farms in the Americas. Scientific studies confirm that the Capivara mountain range was densely populated in the pre-Columbian Era.
Eisleben is a town in Saxony-Anhalt, Germany. It is famous as the hometown of Martin Luther, hence its official name is Lutherstadt Eisleben. As of 2005, Eisleben had a population of 24,552. It lies on the Halle–Kassel railway.
Eisleben is divided into old and new towns (Altstadt and Neustadt); the latter of which was created for Eisleben's miners in the 14th century.
Eisleben was the capital of the district Mansfelder Land and is the seat of the Verwaltungsgemeinschaft ("collective municipality") Lutherstadt Eisleben.
Eisleben was first mentioned in 997 as a market called Islebia and in 1180 as a town. It belonged to the counts of Mansfeld until it passed to the Electorate of Saxony in 1780. It was assigned to the Kingdom of Prussia in 1815 and was administered within the Prussian Province of Saxony. It became part of the new state of Saxony-Anhalt after World War II.
The Protestant reformer Martin Luther was born in Eisleben on November 10, 1483. His father, Hans Luther, was a miner like many of Eisleben's citizens. Luther's family moved to Mansfeld when he was only a year old and he lived in Wittenberg most of his life, but by chance he was in Eisleben when he preached his last
Öland (help·info) (English: Island land) is the second largest Swedish island and the smallest of the traditional provinces of Sweden. Öland has an area of 1,342 km² and is located in the Baltic Sea just off the coast of Småland. The island has 25,000 inhabitants, but during Swedish Midsummer it is visited by up to 500,000 people. It is separated from the mainland by the Kalmar Strait and connected to it by the 6 km Öland Bridge, which opened in 1972.
The traditional provinces of Sweden serve no administrative or political purposes, but are historical and cultural entities. Öland is part of the administrative county Kalmar County (Kalmar län) and is divided in two municipalities, Borgholm Municipality and Mörbylånga Municipality. There was an Öland County in the short period between 1819 and 1826; otherwise, the island has been part of Kalmar County since 1634.
Öland was granted provincial arms in 1560, but it would not be until the 1940s that the province was assigned its proper ones. The arms granted to Öland had been mixed up with the arms granted to Åland and this was not discovered until the 20th century. While Öland changed its coat of arms, Åland, which was now a Finnish
Built in murus dacicus style, the six Dacian Fortresses of the Orăștie Mountains, in Romania, were created in the 1st centuries BC and AD as protection against Roman conquest.
Their extensive and well-preserved remains present a picture of a vigorous and innovative ancient civilization. Today, treasure-hunters sometimes search the area, as Romania lacks legislation in this domain.
The six fortresses - Sarmizegetusa Regia, Costeşti-Cetăţuie, Costeşti-Blidaru, Piatra Roşie, Băniţa and Căpâlna - that formed the defensive system of Decebalus were designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1999, as well as the settlement and fortifications at Feţele Albe.
The town of Sarmizegetusa Regia was the capital and major fortress of the Dacian kingdom, probably built in the mid first century BCE. It consisted of perimeter walls and fortifications, a sacred precinct, and a settlement area primarily for nobles and supporting servants. It was located at the top of a 1200 meter hill with excellent visibility of the surrounding lands. The sacred precinct was on the east side of the town, with a prominent plaza and circular shrines. There were two settlement areas one on the east side and a larger
Haghpat (Armenian: Հաղպատ; also Romanized as Akhpat and Hakhpat) is a village in the Northern Lori province of Armenia, close to the city of Alaverdi and the state border with Georgia.
It is notable for Haghpat Monastery, a religious complex founded in the 10th century and included in the UNESCO World Heritage List along with monasteries in nearby Sanahin. The monastery is an outstanding and magnificent example of medieval Armenian architecture that has been attracting increasing numbers of tourists.
Haghpat Monastery is listed among the UNESCO World Heritage List (1996).
The village itself receives little benefit from these tourists and remains impoverished, with the majority of its residents keeping livestock and growing vegetables for food. Some residents are able to find work in the city of Alaverdi, about 10 km from Haghpat, while others gather berries (mainly blackberries and Cornelian cherry dogwood) from the nearby forests and sell them. Water is gathered from the numerous mountain springs, which are abundant in the area.
The village lies on a dissected plateau, a large flat area dissected by deep "cracks" formed by rivers, including the river Debed. The villages of Sanahin
Jenolan Caves are caves in the Blue Mountains, New South Wales, Australia; 175 kilometres west of Sydney. They are the most celebrated of several similar groups in the limestone of the country being the oldest discovered open caves in the world. They include numerous Silurian marine fossils of great interest and the calcite formations, sometimes pure white, are of extraordinary beauty. The cave network is enormous - over 40 km of multi-level passages - still undergoing active exploration. Several kilometres of the caves have been rendered easily accessible to paying visitors and are well lit.
By measuring the ratio of radioactive potassium and trapped argon gas, which was produced when the potassium decayed, scientists determined the age of the clay in the cave to be approximately 340 million years old, thereby making this cave complex the world's oldest known and dated open cave system. The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) in association with the University of Sydney and the Australian Museum lead the efforts in scientific research into the caves.
Local Gundungarra tribes knew Jenolan Caves area as 'Binoomea' (Dark Places) and possibly shunned
Pavlovsk (Russian: Па́вловск) is a municipal town in Pushkinsky District of the federal city of St. Petersburg, Russia, located 30 kilometers (19 mi) south from St. Petersburg proper and about 4 kilometers (2.5 mi) southeast from Pushkin. Population: 16,058 (2010 Census preliminary results); 14,960 (2002 Census).
The town developed around the Pavlovsk Palace, a major residence of the Russian imperial family. Between 1918 and 1944, its official name was Slutsk, after the revolutionary Vera Slutskaya, and then was changed back to Pavlovsk. Pavlovsk is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site Saint Petersburg and Related Groups of Monuments.
A wooden fortress was built by Russians on the place of Pavlovsk and was known from at least 13th century as part of an Administrative division of Novgorod Land. The fortress and the entire region were later captured by the Swedes. On 13 August 1702, the Russian army led by Peter the Great and Fyodor Apraksin met Swedes at the Izhora River and pushed them to the fortress. For several days, the Swedish Army was reinforcing their positions but were expelled upon a surprise frontal attack.
Paul I, an avid fan of military, had long dreamed of building a
The Rio Abiseo National Park (Spanish: Parque Nacional del Río Abiseo) is located in the San Martín department of Peru. UNESCO pronounced it as Natural and Cultural Heritage of Humanity (World Heritage Site) in 1990. The park is home to a large number of species of flora and fauna, as well as the location of over 30 pre-Columbian archaeological sites. Since 1986, the park has not been open to tourism due to the fragile nature of both the natural and archaeological environment.
Located in the San Martín Region of Peru between the Marañón and Huallaga rivers, the park has an area of approximately 2,745.2 square kilometres. The park covers 70% of the Abiseo river basin. Elevations reach as high as 4,200 meters (13,780 ft) above sea level and as low as 350 m (1,150 ft).
The part protects three distinct ecoregions: Ucayali moist forests at lower elevations, Peruvian Yungas at middle elevations, and Cordillera Central páramo at the highest elevations.
There are at least seven climate zones in the park, including montane forest, tropical alpine forest, montane rainforest, high Andean grasslands (puna), and dry forest. Rainfall ranges from 20 to 80 inches (2.0 m) per annum. The montane
The Mukden Palace (simplified Chinese: 盛京宫殿; traditional Chinese: 盛京宮殿; pinyin: Shèngjīng Gōngdiàn) or Shenyang Gugong (simplified Chinese: 沈阳故宫; traditional Chinese: 瀋陽故宮; pinyin: Shěnyáng Gùgōng), also known as the Shenyang Imperial Palace, is the former imperial palace of the early Qing Dynasty of China.
It was built in 1625 and the first three Qing emperors lived there from 1625 to 1644. It is located in the center of the city of Mukden, Manchuria (Shenyang, China).
Early construction began in 1625 by Nurhaci. By 1631, additional structures were added under Emperor Huang Taiji.
The Mukden Palace was built to resemble the Forbidden City in Beijing. However, the palace also exhibits hints of Manchurian and Tibetan styles.
After the Qing Dynasty replaced the Ming Dynasty in 1644 in Beijing, the Mukden palace lost its status as the official residence of the Emperor. Instead, the Mukden Palace became a regional palace.
In 1780, Emperor Qianlong further expanded the palace. Successive Qing dynasty emperors usually stayed at Mukden Palace for some time each year.
In 1955, Mukden Palace was converted into the Shenyang Palace Museum.
In 2004, it was included on the UNESCO World Heritage
Djémila (Tamazight: Ğamila, Arabic: جميلة, the Beautiful one, Latin: Cuicul or Curculum) is a mountain village in Algeria, near the northern coast east of Algiers, where some of the best preserved Berbero-Roman ruins in North Africa are found. It is situated in the region bordering the Constantinois and Petite Kabylie (Basse Kabylie).
In 1982, Djémila became a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its unique adaptation of Roman architecture to a mountain environment. Significant buildings in Djémila include a theatre, two fora, temples, basilicas, arches, streets, and houses. The exceptionally well preserved ruins surround the forum of the Harsh, a large paved square with an entry marked by a majestic arch.
Under the name of Cuicul, the city was built during the first century A.D. as a military garrison situated on a narrow triangular plateau. The terrain is somewhat rugged, being located at the confluence of two rivers. Cuicul's builders followed a standard plan with a forum at the center and two main streets, the Cardo Maximus and the Decumanus Maximus, composing the major axes. The city was initially populated by a colony of soldiers, and eventually grew to become a large trading
Royal Greenwich (UK /ɡrɪnɪdʒ/ GRIN-ij; US /ɡrɛnɪtʃ/ GREN-ich or /ɡrɛnɪdʒ/ GREN-ij) is a district of south-east London, England, located in the Royal Borough of Greenwich and situated 5.5 miles (8.9 km) east south-east of Charing Cross.
Royal Greenwich is notable for its maritime history and for giving its name to the Greenwich Meridian (0° longitude) and Greenwich Mean Time. The town became the site of a royal palace, the Palace of Placentia from the 15th century, and was the birthplace of many in the House of Tudor, including Henry VIII and Elizabeth I. The palace fell into disrepair during the English Civil War and was rebuilt as the Royal Naval Hospital for Sailors by Sir Christopher Wren and his assistant Nicholas Hawksmoor. These buildings became the Royal Naval College in 1873, and they remained an establishment for military education until 1998 when they passed into the hands of the Greenwich Foundation. The historic rooms within these buildings remain open to the public; other buildings are used by University of Greenwich and Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance.
The town became a popular resort in the 17th century and many grand houses were built there, such as
Located principally in the city centre or Cercado de Lima and Rímac areas, the Historic Centre of Lima is among the most important tourist destinations in Peru.
The city of Lima, the capital of Peru, was founded by Francisco Pizarro on 18 January 1535 and given the name City of the Kings. Nevertheless, with time its original name persisted, which may come from one of two sources: Either the Aymara language lima-limaq (meaning "yellow flower"), or the Spanish pronunciation of the Quechuan word rimaq (meaning "talker", and actually written and pronounced limaq in the nearby Quechua I languages). It is worth noting that the same Quechuan word is also the source of the name given to the river that feeds the city, the Rimac river (pronounced as in the politically dominant Quechua II languages, with an "r" instead of an "l"). Early maps of Peru show the two names displayed jointly.
In 1988, UNESCO declared the historic center of Lima a World Heritage Site for its originality and high concentration of historic monuments constructed in the time of Spanish presence.
Of the structures in the historical center of Lima, situated are more than 1,600 balconies that were built in the viceroyalty
The Lahore Fort, locally referred to as Shahi Qila (Punjabi, Urdu: شاہی قلعہ) is citadel of the city of Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan. It is located in the northwestern corner of the Walled City of Lahore. The trapezoidal composition is spread over 20 hectares.
Origins of the fort go as far back as antiquity, however, the existing base structure was built during the reign of Mughal Emperor Akbar between 1556–1605 and was regularly upgraded by subsequent Mughal, Sikh and British rulers.It has two gates one is known as Alamgiri Gate build by Emperor Aurangzeb which opens towards Badshahi Mosque and other older one known as Maseeti (Punjabi language word means of Masjid) or Masjidi Gate which opens towards Masti Gate Area of Walled City and was built by Emperor Akbar. Currently Alamgiri Gate is used as the principal entrance while Masti Gate is permanently closed .The fort manifests the rich traditions of Mughal architecture. Some of the famous sites inside the fort include: Sheesh Mahal, Alamgiri Gate, Naulakha pavilion, and Moti Masjid. In 1981, the fort was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site along with the Shalimar Gardens (Lahore).
The Pakistan Pavilion at Expo 2010 is designed
Noel Kempff Mercado National Park is a national park in northeast Santa Cruz Department, Province of José Miguel de Velasco, Bolivia, on the border with Brazil.
Noel Kempff Mercado National Park covers 750,000 hectares of land, much of which consists of the Serrania de Huanchaca. The park is located on the Brazilian Shield in the northeast Santa Cruz Department in Bolivia. The Rio de Itenez is its eastern and northern border separating it from the neighboring Brazil. It is situated in a transition zone where the Amazonian rain forests and the dry forest and savannas of Cerrado meet. The park is made up of five distinct habitats, including upland evergreen forest, deciduous forest, upland cerrado savanna, savanna wetlands, and forest wetlands. As a whole, the region can be described as having a marked dry season in the winter and a mean annual precipiation of 1,500 mm.
In 1908, Peter Fawcett first explored the area that is now the national park. It was not until almost 70 years later that the area was looked at again. In the 1970s geologists were sent to the area to survey the rock formations of the Precambrian Shield region in Bolivia. This expedition attracted the attention of
The Nærøyfjord (or Nærøyfjorden) is a fjord in the municipality of Aurland in Sogn og Fjordane, Norway. The narrow fjord is a branch of the large Sognefjord, and it is featured on the "Norway in a Nutshell" daytrips for tourists. The 18-kilometre (11 mi) long fjord is only 500 metres (1,600 ft) wide in some parts.
The river Nærøydalselvi flows down the valley Nærøydalen into the fjord at the village of Gudvangen, near the highway E16. The village of Bakka and the Bakka church are located on the west shore of the fjord.
Since 2005, the Nærøyfjord has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It has also been rated by the National Geographic Society as the world's number one natural heritage site along with the Geirangerfjord.
The Pulkovo Astronomical Observatory (Russian: Пу́лковская астрономи́ческая обсервато́рия, official name The Central Astronomical Observatory of the Russian Academy of Sciences at Pulkovo, Гла́вная (Пу́лковская) астрономи́ческая обсервато́рия Росси́йской акаде́мии нау́к), the principal astronomical observatory of the Russian Academy of Sciences, located 19 km south of Saint Petersburg on Pulkovo Heights (75 m above sea level). It is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site Historic Centre of Saint Petersburg and Related Groups of Monuments.
The observatory was opened in 1839. Originally, it was a brainchild of the German/Russian astronomer Friedrich Georg Wilhelm von Struve, who would become its first director (in 1861, his son Otto Wilhelm von Struve succeeded him). The architect was Alexander Bryullov. The observatory was equipped with the state-of-the-art devices, one of them being the a 38-cm (15 in.) aperture refractor, one of the large refractors in the world at that time (see Great Refractor). In 1885, the observatory was equipped with 30-inch (76 cm) refractor, which was one of the biggest refractors in the world, until the 36" (91 cm) telescope at the Lick Observatory in
Sangiran is an archaeological excavation site on the island of Java in Indonesia. The area comprises about 48 km² and is located in Central Java, about 15 kilometers north of Surakarta in the Solo River valley. In 1996 it was accepted as World Heritage by the UNESCO.
In 1934 the anthropologist Gustav Heinrich Ralph von Koenigswald started to examine the area. During excavations in the next years fossils of some of the first known human ancestors, Pithecanthropus erectus ("Java Man", now reclassified as part of the species Homo erectus), were found here. About 60 more human fossils, among them the enigmatic "Meganthropus", have since been found here. In addition, there are considerable numbers of remains of the animals that these primitive humans hunted, and of others that merely shared the habitat.
Reducción de Santa María la Mayor (Reduction of Holy Maria Major), located in the Santa María Department of the Misiones Province, Argentina, at approximate coordinates 27°33′S 55°20′W / 27.55°S 55.333°W / -27.55; -55.333, was one of the missions or reductions founded in the 17th century by the Jesuits in the Americas during the Spanish colonial period.
The Jesuit reduction was found in founded in 1626, and by 1744 it held a population of 993. It was abandoned when the Jesuits were expelled from the Spanish colonies in 1767.
The ruins of the reduction were declared World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1984, together with other reductions in the area. The ruins have been taken over by vegetation, and are not as well preserved as those of San Ignacio Miní, also in Misiones.
The Acropolis of Athens (Greek: Ακρόπολη Αθηνών) is an ancient citadel located on a high rocky outcrop above the city of Athens and containing the remains of several ancient buildings of great architectural and historic significance, the most famous being the Parthenon. The word acropolis comes from the Greek words ἄκρον (akron, "edge, extremity") and πόλις (polis, "city"). Although there are many other acropoleis in Greece, the significance of the Acropolis of Athens is such that it is commonly known as "The Acropolis" without qualification.
The Acropolis was formally proclaimed as the preeminent monument on the European Cultural Heritage list of monuments on 26 March 2007.
The Acropolis is located on a flat-topped rock that rises 150 m (490 ft) above sea level in the city of Athens, with a surface area of about 3 hectares. It was also known as Cecropia, after the legendary serpent-man, Cecrops, the first Athenian king. While the earliest artifacts date to the Middle Neolithic era, there have been documented habitations in Attica from the Early Neolithic (6th millennium BC). There is little doubt that a Mycenaean megaron stood upon the hill during the late Bronze Age. Nothing of
Alta Gracia is a city located in the north-centre of the province of Córdoba, Argentina. Its name means "High Grace". It is built upon the Sierras Chicas, in a region that the Comechingón Indians used to call Paravachasca. It has about 43,000 inhabitants (2001 census [INDEC]).
In the 17th century Alta Gracia was as a large ranch (an estancia) operated by Jesuits. Along with other ranches, including Colonia Caroya, Jesús María, Santa Catalina, La Candelaria y San Ignacio de los Ejercicios, Alta Gracia was founded to economically support the Collegium Maximum or "Colegio Máximo", one of Argentina's first universities (Universitas Cortuba Tucumanæ) today: Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, and other educational institutes that are now part of the Manzana Jesuítica ("Jesuit Block"), an important center in Córdoba City. The Jesuit Block and Estancias of Córdoba were named World Heritage site in 2000.
Owners of the Estancia Alta Gracia:
The Austrian Parliament Building (German: Parlament or Hohes Haus, formerly the Reichsratsgebäude) in Vienna is where the two Houses of the Parliament of Austria conduct their sittings. The building is on the Ringstraße boulevard in the first district Innere Stadt, close by the Hofburg Palace and the Palace of Justice.
The main construction lasted from 1874 to 1883. The architect responsible for the building in a Greek revival style was Theophil Edvard Hansen. He designed the building holistically, each element harmonising with the others and was therefore also responsible for the interior decoration, such as statues, paintings, furniture, chandeliers, and numerous other elements. Hansen was ennobled by Emperor Franz Joseph with the title of a Freiherr (Baron) after completion. One of the building's most famous features is the later added Athena fountain in front of the main entrance, which is a notable Viennese tourist attraction. Following heavy damage and destruction during the Second World War, most of the interior has been restored to its original splendour.
The parliament building covers over 13,500 square metres, making it one of the largest structures on the Ringstraße. It
Ávila (Latin: Abila and Obila) is a Spanish city located in the autonomous community of Castile and León, and is the capital of the Province of Ávila.
It is sometimes called the City of Stones and Saints, and it claims that it is one of the cities with the highest number of Romanesque and Gothic churches (and bars and restaurants) per head in Spain. (Zamora, a city of similar size, claims the greatest number of Romanesque churches in Europe.) It is notable for having complete and prominent medieval city walls, built in the Romanesque style. It The city is also known as "Ávila de los Caballeros", "Ávila del Rey" and "Ávila de los Leales" (Ávila of the Knights, the King and the Loyalists), each of these epithets being present in the city standard.
The writer José Martínez Ruiz (Azorín), in his seminal book El alma castellana (The Castilian Soul), described it as "perhaps the most 16th century city in Spain", and it was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1985.
Situated 1132 meters (3714 feet) above sea level on a rocky outcrop on the right bank of the Adaja river, a tributary of the Duero, Ávila is the highest provincial capital in Spain. It is built on the flat summit of a
Brimstone Hill Fortress National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site on the island of St. Kitts in the Federation of St. Christopher (St. Kitts) and Nevis in the Eastern Caribbean. It was designed by British military engineers and built and maintained by African slaves. It is one of the best preserved historical fortifications in the Americas.
Cannon were first mounted on Brimstone Hill in 1690, when the British used them to recapture Fort Charles from the French. The French had not considered it possible to transport cannon up the steep and thickly wooded sides of Brimstone Hill. The construction of the fort then carried on intermittently for just over 100 years. In its heyday, the fort was known as 'The Gibraltar of the West Indies', in reference to its imposing height and seeming invulnerability. In 1782, the French, under Admiral Comte François Joseph Paul de Grasse laid siege to the fort. During the siege, the adjacent island of Nevis surrendered, and guns from Fort Charles and other small forts there were brought to St. Kitts for use against Brimstone Hill. British Admiral Hood could not dislodge de Grasse, and after a month of siege, the heavily outnumbered and cut-off
Casa Milà (Catalan pronunciation: [ˈkazə miˈɫa]), better known as La Pedrera (pronounced: [ɫə pəˈðɾeɾə], meaning the 'The Quarry'), is a building designed by the Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí and built during the years 1905–1910, being considered officially completed in 1912. It is located at 92, Passeig de Gràcia (passeig is Catalan for promenade) in the Eixample district of Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain.
It was a controversial design at the time for the bold forms of the undulating stone facade and wrought iron decoration of the balconies and windows, designed largely by Josep Maria Jujol, who also created some of the plaster ceilings.
Architecturally it is considered an innovative work for its steel structure and curtain walls – the façade is self-supporting. Other innovative elements were the construction of underground car parking and separate lifts and stairs for the owners and their servants.
In 1984, it was declared World Heritage by UNESCO. The building is made open to the public by the CatalunyaCaixa Foundation, which manages the various exhibitions and activities and visits to the interior and roof.
It was built for the married couple, Roser Segimon and Pere Milà. Roser
Chiquitania ("Chiquitos" or "Gran Chiquitania") is a region of tropical savannas in the Santa Cruz Department in eastern Bolivia.
"Chiquitos" is the colonial name for what is now essentially five of the six provinces that make up the Chiquitania, a region in Bolivia's Santa Cruz department. "Chiquitos" refers to a region, not a tribe. One of the many tribes inhabiting Chiquitos were the Chiquitano.
The name Chiquitos means "little ones" in Spanish. It was chosen by the Spanish conquistadores, when they found the small doors of the Indian huts in the region. Around 20 ethnic groups live in the Chiquitania.
A notable feature are the 18th century Jesuit reductions and Franciscan settlements scattered throughout the region. Six churches still remain in the zone and were selected in 1990 as UNESCO World Heritage Sites under the name Jesuit Missions of the Chiquitos.
The island of Delos (Greek: Δήλος, [ˈðilos]; Attic Δῆλος, Doric Δᾶλος), near Mykonos, near the centre of the Cyclades archipelago, is one of the most important mythological, historical and archaeological sites in Greece. The excavations in the island are among the most extensive in the Mediterranean; ongoing work takes place under the direction of the French School at Athens and many of the artifacts found are on display at the Archaeological Museum of Delos and the National Archaeological Museum of Athens.
Delos had a position as a holy sanctuary for a millennium before Olympian Greek mythology made it the birthplace of Apollo and Artemis. From its Sacred Harbour, the horizon shows the two conical mounds (image below) that have identified landscapes sacred to a goddess in other sites: one, retaining its pre-Greek name Mount Kynthos, is crowned with a sanctuary of Zeus.
Established as a culture center, Delos had an importance that its natural resources could never have offered. In this vein Leto, searching for a birthing-place for Artemis and Apollo, addressed the island:
Investigation of ancient stone huts found on the island indicate that it has been inhabited since the 3rd
Desembarco del Granma National Park (Spanish: Parque Nacional Desembarco del Granma) is a national park in south-eastern Cuba, in what is now Granma Province. The park is named after the yacht in which Fidel Castro, Che Guevara, Raúl Castro, and 79 of their supporters sailed from Mexico to Cuba in 1956 and incited the Cuban Revolution.In 1999 it was listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site because of its marine terraces and pristine sea cliffs.
Gusuku (ぐすく, 城, Okinawan: gushiku) is a term often referring to Okinawan castles or fortresses featured by stone walls. However, the origin and essence of gusuku remain controversial to date. In the archaeology of Okinawa Prefecture, the Gusuku period refers to an archaeological epoch of the Okinawa Islands that follows the Shell Mound period and precedes the Ryūkyū Kingdom. Many gusuku and related cultural remains in Okinawa Island have been listed by UNESCO as World Heritage Sites under the title Gusuku Sites and Related Properties of the Kingdom of Ryukyu.
In the Omoro Sōshi, the term gusuku is written as "くすく," or "ぐすく" in hiragana. Occasionally, the kanji "城" (castle) is assigned to it. This is an unusual kun reading as it is pronounced shiro in standard Japanese. In later Ryūka and Kumi Odori, the reading shiro is also used for the same kanji.
In the Omoro Sōshi, the referents of gusuku are mostly castles and fortresses but are not limited to them. Some are sacred places and places of worship. In some cases, gusuku refers to Shuri Castle. The Liuqiu-guan yiyu, a Chinese dictionary, maps Chinese "皇城" (imperial palace) to the transcription "姑速姑" (gu-su-gu). Similarly, the Yiyu
Hallstatt, Upper Austria, is a village in the Salzkammergut, a region in Austria. It is located near the Hallstätter See (a lake). At the 2001 census, it had 946 inhabitants. Alexander Scheutz has been mayor of Hallstatt since 2009.
Hallstatt is known for its production of salt, dating back to prehistoric times, and gave its name to the Hallstatt culture, a culture often linked to Celtic, Proto-Celtic and pre-Illyrian peoples in Early Iron Age Europe, c.800-450 BCE. Some of the earliest archaeological evidence for the Celts (Kelts) was found in Hallstatt. [culture]
Situated in the south-western shore of the Hallstätter See, the town lies in the geographical region of Salzkammergut, on the national road linking Salzburg and Graz.
Salt was a valuable resource, so the region was historically very wealthy. It is possible to tour the world's first known salt mine, located above downtown Hallstatt.
The village also gave its name to the early Iron Age Hallstatt culture and is a World Heritage Site for Cultural Heritage. Hallstatt is a popular tourist attraction owing to its small-town appeal and can be toured on foot in ten minutes.
There are to date no recorded notable events that took
Hongcun (Chinese: 宏村; pinyin: Hóngcūn) is a village in Yi County county, Anhui Province, People's Republic of China, near the southwest slope of Mount Huangshan.
The village is arranged in the shape of an ox with the nearby hill (Leigang Hill) interpreted as the head, and two trees standing on it as the horns. Four bridges across the Jiyin stream can be seen as the legs whilst the houses of the village form the body. Inside the “body”, the Jiyin stream represents the intestines and various lakes such as the “South Lake” (Nanhu) form the other internal organs.
The architecture and carvings of the approximately 150 residences dating back to the Ming and Qing Dynasties are said to be among the best of their kind in China. One of the biggest of the residences open to visitors, Chenzhi Hall, also contains a small museum.
Together with Xidi, the village became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2000. Scenes from the film Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon were filmed on location in Hongcun.
Hōryū-ji (法隆寺, lit. Temple of the Flourishing Law) is a Buddhist temple in Ikaruga, Nara Prefecture, Japan. Its full name is Hōryū Gakumonji (法隆学問寺), or Learning Temple of the Flourishing Law, the complex serving as both a seminary and monastery.
The temple's pagoda is widely acknowledged to be one of the oldest wooden buildings existing in the world, underscoring Hōryū-ji's place as one of the most celebrated temples in Japan. In 1993, Hōryū-ji was inscribed together with Hokki-ji as a UNESCO World Heritage Site under the name Buddhist Monuments in the Hōryū-ji Area. The Japanese government lists several of its structures, sculptures and artifacts as National Treasures.
The temple was originally commissioned by Prince Shōtoku; at the time it was called Ikaruga-dera (斑鳩寺), a name that is still sometimes used. This first temple is believed to have been completed by 607. Hōryū-ji was dedicated to Yakushi Nyorai, the Buddha of healing and in honor of the prince's father. Excavations done in 1939 confirmed that Prince Shotoku's palace, the Ikaruga-no-miya (斑鳩宮), occupied the eastern part of the current temple complex, where the Tō-in (東院) sits today. Also discovered were the ruins of a
The city and municipality of Oaxaca de Juárez, or simply Oaxaca, is the capital and largest city of the Mexican state of the same name (Oaxaca). It is located in the Centro District in the Central Valleys region of the state, in the foothills of the Sierra Madre at the base of the Cerro del Fortín extending to the banks of the Atoyac River. This city relies heavily on tourism, which is based on its large number of colonial-era structures as well as the native Zapotec and Mixtec cultures and archeological sites. It, along with the archeological site of Monte Alban, were named a World Heritage Site in 1987. It is also the home of the month-long cultural festival called the “Guelaguetza,” which features Oaxacan dance, music and a beauty pageant for indigenous women.
It is nicknamed "la Verde Antequera" (the green Antequera) due to its prior name (Nueva Antequera) and the variety of structures built from a native green stone. The name Oaxaca is derived from the Nahuatl name for the place, Huaxyacac, which was Hispanicized to Guajaca, later spelled Oaxaca. “de Juárez” was added in honor of Benito Juárez, who was a native of this state. The coat of arms for the municipality bears the
Old Goa (Konkani:पोरणें गोंय – Pornnem Goem; Hindi ओल्ड गोवा – Old Gova, पुराणा गोवा – Purana Gova) or Velha Goa (Velha means "old" in Portuguese) is a historical city in North Goa district in the Indian state of Goa. The city was constructed by the Bijapur Sultanate in the 15th century, and served as capital of Portuguese India from the 16th century until its abandonment in the 18th century due to a plague. It is said to have once been a city of nearly 200,000 where from, before the plague, the Portuguese traded across continents. The remains of the city are a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Old Goa is barely 10 kilometers from the state capital of Panaji.
The name Old Goa was first used in the 1960s in the address of the Konkani monthly magazine, dedicated to spread the devotion of the Sacred Heart, Dor Mhoineachi Rotti which was shifted to the Basilica de Bom Jesus in 1964. Postal letters were returned to the sender, as the name "Old Goa" was unknown then, according to then and longtime editor of the monthly, the great Goan historian late Padre Moreno de Souza, SJ.
The village panchayat uses the name Sé-Old Goa, while the post office, Archaeological Survey of India use the name
The Palmeral of Elche (Spanish: Palmeral de Elche, Valencian: Palmerar d'Elx) is a plantation of palm trees in the Spanish province of Alicante. It is the largest palm grove (Spanish: palmeral) in Europe and one of the largest in the world, surpassed in size only by some in Arab countries.
The Palmeral includes the Parque Municipal and many other orchards (huertos), covering over 3.5 km (1.4 sq mi), including 1.5 km (0.58 sq mi) within the city of Elche (Elx). It contains more than 11,000 palm trees, mostly date palms (Phoenix dactylifera), with individual specimens up to 300 years old. At its peak, in the 18th century, it may have covered an area twice as large, with up to 200,000 trees. The dates are harvested in December. A famous date palm is the "Imperial Palm" (Palmera Imperial), with 7 stems in the shape of a candelabra, named after Elisabeth, known as Sissi, the Empress consort of Franz Joseph, who visited the plantation in 1894.
It is thought that palms were originally planted in this location as early as the 5th century BC by Carthaginians who settled in south-east Spain. The plantation survived under the Romans and was expanded under the rule of the Moors, including the
Pirin National Park is a World Heritage national park that encompasses the larger part of the Pirin Mountains in the southwest of Bulgaria. It has an area of about 400 km (150 sq mi) and lies at an altitude from 1,008–2,914 m (3,307–9,560 ft).
Two nature reserves are located within the boundaries of the park, Bayuvi Dupki-Dzhindzhiritsa, one of the oldest in the country, and Yulen.
The park's boundaries and size have stood many changes through the course of history.
Vihren National Park was created on 8 November 1962 with the purpose of preservation of the forests in the highest parts of the mountain. The park had an area of 62 km (24 sq mi), which is a small part of its modern territory. It was renamed to Pirin People's Park in 1974 with a ministerial decree and its territory was considerably enlarged.
A separate park administration was established in 1979 with its seat in Bansko. The park was included in the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1983, and after a protected areas law was approved in 1998, the area was proclaimed a national park, embracing a territory of 403.32 km (155.72 sq mi).
The huge relief diversity of the park is the reason for the variety of plant species on its
Salvador (Portuguese pronunciation: [sawvaˈdoʁ], Saviour; historic name: São Salvador da Bahia de Todos os Santos, in English: "City of the Holy Saviour of the Bay of all Saints") is the largest city on the northeast coast of Brazil and the capital of the Northeastern Brazilian state of Bahia. Salvador is also known as Brazil's capital of happiness due to its easygoing population and countless popular outdoor parties, including its street carnival. The first colonial capital of Brazil, the city is one of the oldest in the Americas. For a long time, it was simply known as Bahia, and appears under that name (or as Salvador da Bahia, Salvador of Bahia so as to differentiate it from other Brazilian cities of the same name) on many maps and books from before the mid-20th century. Salvador is the third most populous Brazilian city, after São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. The metropolitan area of the city, with 3.5 million of people, however, is the seventh most populous Brazilian urban agglomeration, and the third in Brazilian Northeast Region.
The city of Salvador is notable in Brazil for its cuisine, music and architecture, and its metropolitan area is the wealthiest in Brazil's Northeast.
The ruins of Spiš Castle (Slovak: Spišský hrad (help·info), Hungarian: Szepesi vár, German: Zipser Burg) in eastern Slovakia form one of the largest castle sites in Central Europe. The castle is situated above the town of Spišské Podhradie and the village of Žehra, in the region known as Spiš (Hungarian: Szepes, German: Zips, Polish: Spisz, Latin: Scepusium). It was included in the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites in 1993 (together with the adjacent locations of Spišská Kapitula, Spišské Podhradie and Žehra). This is one of the biggest European castles by area (41 426 m²).
Spiš Castle was built in the 12th century on the site of an earlier castle. It was the political, administrative, economic and cultural centre of Szepes (Spiš) County of the Kingdom of Hungary. Before 1464, it was owned by the kings of Hungary, afterwards (until 1528) by the Zápolya family, the Thurzó family (1531–1635), the Csáky family (1638–1945), аnd (since 1945) by the state of Slovakia.
Originally a Romanesque stone castle with fortifications, a two-story Romanesque palace and a three nave Romanesque-Gothic basilica were constructed by the second half of the 13th century. A second extramural settlement
The Struve Geodetic Arc is a chain of survey triangulations stretching from Hammerfest in Norway to the Black Sea, through ten countries and over 2,820 km, which yielded the first accurate measurement of a meridian.
The chain was established and used by the German-born Russian scientist Friedrich Georg Wilhelm von Struve in the years 1816 to 1855 to establish the exact size and shape of the earth. At that time, the chain passed merely through two countries: Union of Sweden-Norway and the Russian Empire. The Arc's first point is located in Tartu Observatory, where Struve conducted much of his research.
In 2005, the chain was inscribed on the World Heritage List as a memorable ensemble of the chain made up of 34 commemorative plaques or built obelisks out of the original 265, main station points which are marked by drilled holes in rocks, iron crosses, cairns, others.
Measurement of the triangulation chain comprises 258 main triangles and 265 geodetic vertices. The northernmost point is located near Hammerfest in Norway and the southernmost point near the Black Sea in Ukraine. This inscription is located in ten countries, the most of any UNESCO World Heritage.
Sucre, also known historically as Charcas, La Plata and Chuquisaca (population 247,300 in 2006) is the constitutional capital of Bolivia, the capital of the department of Chuquisaca and the 4th most populated city in Bolivia. Located in the south-central part of the country, Sucre lies at an elevation of 2750m (9,000 ft). This relatively high altitude gives the city a cool temperate climate year-round.
On November 30, 1538, Sucre was founded under the name Ciudad de la Plata de la Nueva Toledo ( Silver City of New Toledo) by Pedro Anzures, Marqués de Campo Redondo. In 1559, the Spanish King Philip II established the Audiencia de Charcas in La Plata with authority over an area which covers what is now Paraguay, southeastern Peru, Northern Chile and Argentina, and much of Bolivia. The Audiencia de Charcas was a subdivision of the Viceroyalty of Peru until 1776, when it was transferred to the newly created Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata. In 1601, the Recoleta Monastery was founded by the Franciscans and in 1609, an archbishopric was founded in the city. In 1624, St Francis Xavier University of Chuquisaca was founded.
Very much a Spanish city during the colonial era, the narrow
Tino is an Italian island situated in the Ligurian Sea, at the westernmost end of the Gulf of La Spezia. It is part of an archipelago of three closely spaced islands jutting out south from the mainland at Portovenere. The largest of the three, Palmaria, lies to the north and the tiny Tinetto to the south.
In 1997, the archipelago, together with Portovenere and the Cinque Terre, was designated by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.
The patron saint of the Gulf of La Spezia, Saint Venerius (Italian San Venerio), is said to have lived in on the island as a hermit, and later as abbot, until his death in 630. His feast is celebrated here annually on 13 September. It is thought that a sanctuary was constructed at the place of Venerio's death to contain his remains and that this was extended to form a monastery in eleventh century. The remains of the monastery can be seen on the northern coast of the island.
Today the island, which is part of a military zone, is surmounted by a lighthouse.
Tōshōdai-ji (唐招提寺) is a Buddhist temple of the Ritsu sect in the city of Nara, in Nara Prefecture, Japan. The Classic Golden Hall, also known as the kondō, has a single story, hipped tiled roof with a seven bay wide facade. It is considered the archetype of "classical style."
It was founded by a Chinese Buddhist monk named Jianzhen during the Nara period in the year 759. Jianzhen was hired by the newly empowered clans to travel in search of funding from private aristocrats as well.
Tōshōdai-ji is one of the places in Nara that UNESCO has designated as World Heritage Site "Historic Monuments of Ancient Nara".
Villa Chiericati (also known as Villa Chiericati-Rigo) is a villa at Vancimuglio in the Veneto, northern Italy. It was designed for Giovanni Chiericati by the architect Andrea Palladio in the early 1550s.
Palladio also designed the family's town house Palazzo Chiericati in Vicenza.
In 1996 UNESCO included the villa in the World Heritage Site City of Vicenza and the Palladian Villas of the Veneto.
The villa is square. A portico projects from its principal facade. (This was the first time a temple pronaos had been incorporated into a villa's design). The principal rooms are built upon a piano nobile above a semi-basement. The upper floor is very much of secondary importance. The design of the villa was to be the prototype for Palladio's later works at the Villa Rotonda and the Villa Malcontenta.
Work on the villa stopped after the death of Palladio's client. It was not finally completed until after it had been purchased by Ludovico Porto in 1574. In 1584 he employed the architect Domenico Groppino, who had collaborated with Palladio on other projects, to complete the villa.
There is some debate as to the extent Groppino influenced the eventual design of the building. While the
The Virunga National Park (French: Parc National des Virunga), formerly named Albert National Park, is a 7800 square km National Park that stretches from the Virunga Mountains in the South, to the Rwenzori Mountains in the North, in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo, bordering Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda and Rwenzori Mountains National Park and Queen Elizabeth National Park in Uganda.
The park was established in 1925 as Africa's first national park and is a UNESCO-designated World Heritage Site since 1979. In recent years poaching and the Congo Civil War have seriously damaged its wildlife population. The park is managed by the Congolese National Park Authorities, the Institut Congolais pour la Conservation de la Nature (ICCN) and its partner the Africa Conservation Fund (UK).
The park was created in 1925 by King Albert I of Belgium as the first national park on the continent of Africa. It was founded primarily to protect the mountain gorillas living in the forests of the Virunga Mountains controlled by the Belgian Congo, but later expanded north to include the Rwindi Plains, Lake Edward and the Rwenzori Mountains in the far north.
In the first 35 years, the
The Collegiate Church of St Peter at Westminster, popularly known as Westminster Abbey, is a large, mainly Gothic church, in the City of Westminster, London, United Kingdom, located just to the west of the Palace of Westminster. It is the traditional place of coronation and burial site for English, later British and later still (and currently) monarchs of the Commonwealth realms. The abbey is a Royal Peculiar and briefly held the status of a cathedral from 1540 to 1550.
Westminster Abbey is a collegiate church governed by the Dean and Chapter of Westminster, as established by Royal charter of Queen Elizabeth I in 1560, which created it as the Collegiate Church of St Peter Westminster and a Royal Peculiar under the personal jurisdiction of the Sovereign. The members of the Chapter are the Dean and four residentiary canons, assisted by the Receiver General and Chapter Clerk. One of the canons is also Rector of St Margaret's Church, Westminster, and often holds also the post of Chaplain to the Speaker of the House of Commons. In addition to the Dean and canons, there are at present two full-time minor canons, one is precentor, and the other is sacrist. The office of Priest Vicar was
Xochicalco (Nahuatl pronunciation: [ʃot͡ʃiˈkaɬko]) is a pre-Columbian archaeological site in the Municipality of Miacatlán in the western part of the Mexican state of Morelos. The name Xochicalco may be translated from Nahuatl as "in the (place of the) house of Flowers". The site is located 38 km southwest of Cuernavaca, about 76 miles by road from Mexico City. The site is open to visitors all week, from 10 am to 5 pm, although access to the observatory is only allowed after noon. The apogee of Xochicalco came after the fall of Teotihuacan and it has been speculated that Xochicalco may have played a part in the fall of the Teotihuacan empire.
The architecture and iconography of Xochicalco show affinities with Teotihuacan, the Maya area, and the Matlatzinca culture of the Toluca Valley. Today some residents of the nearby village of Cuentepec speak Nahuatl.
The main ceremonial center is atop an artificially leveled hill, with remains of residential structures, mostly unexcavated, on long terraces covering the slopes. The site was first occupied by 200 BC, but did not develop into an urban center until the Epiclassic period (AD 700 – 900). Nearly all the standing architecture at the