Shenyang in China

March 16th, 2018 | Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage |

West Pagoda Street © Ecabal/cc-by-sa-4.0

West Pagoda Street © Ecabal/cc-by-sa-4.0

Shenyang, formerly known by its Manchu name Mukden or Fengtian, is the provincial capital and the largest city of Liaoning Province in the People’s Republic of China, as well as the largest city in Northeast China by urban population. The city’s urban area has 6.3 million inhabitants, while the total population of the Shenyang municipality, which holds the administrative status of a sub-provincial city, is up to 8.1 million. Shenyang’s city region includes the ten metropolitan districts of Shenyang proper, the county-level city of Xinmin, and two counties of Kangping and Faku. In the 17th century, Shenyang was conquered by the Manchu people and briefly used as the capital of the Qing dynasty.   read more…


March 2nd, 2018 | Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage |



The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations (UN) based in Paris. Its declared purpose is to contribute to peace and security by promoting international collaboration through educational, scientific, and cultural reforms in order to increase universal respect for justice, the rule of law, and human rights along with fundamental freedom proclaimed in the United Nations Charter. It is the successor of the League of NationsInternational Committee on Intellectual Cooperation. UNESCO has 195 member states and ten associate members, including Cook Islands and Niue. Most of its field offices are “cluster” offices covering three or more countries; national and regional offices also exist. In October 2017, the United States and Israel have declared that they will leave UNESCO on 31 December 2018. Efforts to keep the United States in the UNESCO promptly started on the diplomatic floor.   read more…

The Saint Catherine’s Monastery at Mount Sinai

March 1st, 2018 | Destination: | Rubric: General, House of the Month, UNESCO World Heritage, Union for the Mediterranean |

Saint Catherine's Monastery in front of Mount Sinai © - Joonas Plaan/cc-by-2.0

Saint Catherine’s Monastery in front of Mount Sinai © – Joonas Plaan/cc-by-2.0

Saint Catherine’s Monastery, officially “Sacred Monastery of the God-Trodden Mount Sinai”, lies on the Sinai Peninsula, at the mouth of a gorge at the foot of Mount Sinai, in the city of Saint Catherine, Egypt in the South Sinai Governorate. The monastery is controlled by the autonomous Church of Sinai, part of the wider Eastern Orthodox Church, and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Built between 548 and 565, the monastery is one of the oldest working Christian monasteries in the world. The site contains the world’s oldest continually operating library, possessing many unique books including the Syriac Sinaiticus and, until 1859, the Codex Sinaiticus. A small town with hotels and swimming pools, called Saint Katherine City, has grown around the monastery.   read more…

Theme Week United Arab Emirates – Emirate of Sharjah

February 23rd, 2018 | Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage |

Buhairah Corniche © Basil D Soufi/cc-by-sa-3.0

Buhairah Corniche © Basil D Soufi/cc-by-sa-3.0

The Emirate of Sharjah is one of the seven emirates. The emirate covers 2,590 square kilometres (1,000 sq mi) and has a population of over 1.4 million. The emirate of Sharjah comprises the capital city of Sharjah, after which it is named, and other minor towns and exclaves such as Kalba, Dibba Al-Hisn and Khor Fakkan. The emirate is a constitutional monarchy. It has been ruled by Sultan bin Muhammad Al-Qasimi since 1972. Sharjah is the third largest emirate in the United Arab Emirates, and is the only one to have land on both the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman. The emirate covers 2,590 square kilometres (1,000 sq mi) which is equivalent to 3.3 per cent of the UAE’s total area, excluding the islands. Sharjah City borders Dubai to the south and Ajman to the north, and the three form a conurbation. The city lies some 170 kilometers away from the UAE capital city Abu Dhabi. Sharjah also encompasses some important oasis areas, the most famous of which is the fertile Dhaid region, where a range of vegetables and fruits are cultivated.   read more…

Coro in Venezuela

February 14th, 2018 | Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage |

Iglesia de San Francisco © - Grégory David Escobar Fernández/cc-by-2.0

Iglesia de San Francisco © – Grégory David Escobar Fernández/cc-by-2.0

Coro is the capital of Falcón State and the oldest city in the west of Venezuela. It was founded on July 26, 1527 by Juan de Ampíes as Santa Ana de Coro. It is established at the south of the Paraguaná Peninsula in a coastal plain, flanked by the Médanos de Coro National Park to the north and the sierra de Coro to the south, at a few kilometers from its port (La Vela de Coro) in the Caribbean Sea at a point equidistant between the Ensenada de La Vela and Golfete de Coro. Thanks to the city’s history, culture and its well-preserved Colonial architecture, “Coro and its port La Vela” was designated in 1993 as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, thus becoming the first site in Venezuela to be vested with this title. Since 2005 it is on the UNESCO’s List of World Heritage in Danger.   read more…

Al-Khalīl or Hebron in the West Bank

January 31st, 2018 | Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage, Union for the Mediterranean |

Hebron Market © - amillionwaystobe/cc-by-2.0

Hebron Market © – amillionwaystobe/cc-by-2.0

Hebron is a Palestinian city located in the southern West Bank, 30 km (19 mi) south of Jerusalem. It lies 930 meters (3,050 ft) above sea level. The largest city in the West Bank, and the second largest in the Palestine after Gaza, it has a population of 216,000 Palestinians, and between 500 and 850 Jewish settlers concentrated in and around the old quarter. Muslims, Jews, and Christians all venerate the city of Hebron for its association with Abraham – it includes the traditional burial site of the biblical Patriarchs and Matriarchs. Judaism ranks Hebron as the second-holiest city after Jerusalem, while Islam regards it as one of the four holy cities.   read more…

Briançon in the Cottian Alps

January 22nd, 2018 | Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage |

© Benj05/cc-by-sa-3.0

© Benj05/cc-by-sa-3.0

Briançon a commune in the Hautes-Alpes department in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region in southeastern France. It is a sub-prefecture of the department. At an altitude of 1,326 metres (4,350 feet) it is the highest city in France, based on the French definition as a community containing more than 2,000 inhabitants. Briançon’s most recent population estimate is 12,00. Briançon is built on a plateau centred on the confluence of the Durance and the Guisane rivers. Briançon is the base and lowest altitude station of the large Serre Chevalier ski resort. Most of the town’s accommodation is used exclusively in winter, the population tripling during that period.   read more…

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