Muskau Park

14 January 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Museums, Exhibitions, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  2 minutes

New Castle © Jochen Sievert/cc-by-sa-4.0

New Castle © Jochen Sievert/cc-by-sa-4.0

Muskau Park (German: Muskauer Park, officially: Fürst-Pückler-Park Bad Muskau; Polish: Park Mużakowski) is a landscape park in the Upper Lusatia region of Germany and Poland. It is the largest and one of the most famous English gardens in Central Europe, stretching along both sides of the German–Polish border on the Lusatian Neisse. The park was laid out from 1815 onwards at the behest of Prince Hermann von Pückler-Muskau (1785–1871), centered on his Schloss Muskau residence.   read more…

Speyer in Rhineland-Palatinate

10 January 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  6 minutes

View from Altpörtel tower towards Speyer Cathedral © Roman Eisele/cc-by-sa-4.0

View from Altpörtel tower towards Speyer Cathedral © Roman Eisele/cc-by-sa-4.0

Speyer is a city in Rhineland-Palatinate in Germany with approximately 50,000 inhabitants. Located on the left bank of the river Rhine, Speyer lies 25 km (16 miles) south of Ludwigshafen and Mannheim, and 21 km (13 miles) south-west of Heidelberg. Founded by the Romans, it is one of Germany’s oldest cities.   read more…

Macaronesia in the Atlantic Ocean

31 December 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  6 minutes

Cámara de Lobos, Madeira © Luis Miguel Bugallo Sánchez/cc-by-sa-4.0

Cámara de Lobos, Madeira © Luis Miguel Bugallo Sánchez/cc-by-sa-4.0

Macaronesia is a collection of four volcanic archipelagos in the North Atlantic Ocean, off the coasts of the continents of Africa and Europe. Each archipelago is made up of a number of Atlantic oceanic islands, which are formed by seamounts on the ocean floor and have peaks above the ocean’s surface. Some of the Macaronesian islands belong to Portugal, some belong to Spain, and the rest belong to Cape Verde. Politically, the islands belonging to Portugal and Spain are part of the European Union. Geologically, Macaronesia is part of the African tectonic plate. Some of its islands – the Azores – are situated along the edge of that plate at the point where it abuts the Eurasian and North American plates. Macaronesia consists of four main archipelagos. From north to south, these are: the Azores, an Autonomous Region of Portugal, Madeira (also including the Savage Islands), an Autonomous Region of Portugal, the Canary Islands, an Autonomous Community of Spain and Cape Verde, an independent West African country.   read more…

The Rock-Hewn Churches of Lalibela

1 December 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, House of the Month, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  7 minutes

Bete Giyorgis © Bernard Gagnon/cc-by-sa-3.0

Bete Giyorgis © Bernard Gagnon/cc-by-sa-3.0

The Rock-hewn Churches of Lalibela are monolithic churches located in the Western Ethiopian Highlands near the town of Lalibela, named after the late-12th and early-13th century King Gebre Mesqel Lalibela of the Zagwe Dynasty, who commissioned the massive building project of 11 rock-hewn churches to recreate the holy city of Jerusalem in his own kingdom. The site remains in use by the Ethiopian Orthodox Christian Church to this day, and it remains an important place of pilgrimage for Ethiopian Orthodox worshipers. It took 24 years to build all the eleven rock hewn churches. The site of the rock-hewn churches of Lalibela was first included on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1978.   read more…

Pingyao Ancient City in China

27 November 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  7 minutes

Rih Sheng Chang Bank © Peellden/cc-by-3.0

Rih Sheng Chang Bank © Peellden/cc-by-3.0

Pingyao, officially Pingyao Ancient City, is a settlement in central Shanxi, China, famed for its importance in Chinese economic history and for its well-preserved Ming and Qing urban planning and architecture. Administratively, it comprises the town of Gutao in Pingyao County in Jinzhong Prefecture. It has a population of about 50,000.   read more…

Margravial Opera House Bayreuth

25 November 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Opera Houses, Theaters, Libraries, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  9 minutes

Stage © Pierre Schoberth/cc-by-sa-3.0

Stage © Pierre Schoberth/cc-by-sa-3.0

The Margravial Opera House (German: Markgräfliches Opernhaus) is a Baroque opera house in the town of Bayreuth, Germany, built between 1745 and 1750. It is one of Europe’s few surviving theatres of the period and has been extensively restored. On 30 June 2012, the opera house was inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage List. It was built according to plans designed by the French architect Joseph Saint-Pierre (ca. 1709 – 1754), court builder of the Hohenzollern margrave Frederick of Brandenburg-Bayreuth and his wife Princess Wilhelmine of Prussia. It was inaugurated on the occasion of the marriage of their daughter Elisabeth Fredericka Sophie with Duke Charles Eugene of Württemberg.   read more…

Theme Week Guatemala – Antigua Guatemala

30 October 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  9 minutes

Santa Catalina Arch and Volcan de Agua © flickr.com - Chad Davis/cc-by-sa-2.0

Santa Catalina Arch and Volcan de Agua © flickr.com – Chad Davis/cc-by-sa-2.0

Antigua Guatemala, commonly referred to as just Antigua or la Antigua, is a city in the central highlands of Guatemala known for its preserved Spanish Baroque-influenced architecture as well as a number of ruins of colonial churches. It served as the capital of the Kingdom of Guatemala. It has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Antigua Guatemala serves as the municipal seat for the surrounding municipality of the same name. It also serves as the departmental capital of Sacatepéquez Department.   read more…

Theme Week Guatemala – Tikal National Park

26 October 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  9 minutes

Tikal Plaza and North Acropolis © Bjørn Christian Tørrissen/cc-by-sa-3.0

Tikal Plaza and North Acropolis © Bjørn Christian Tørrissen/cc-by-sa-3.0

Tikal is the ruin of an ancient city, which was likely to have been called Yax Mutal, found in a rainforest in Guatemala. It is one of the largest archeological sites and urban centers of the pre-Columbian Maya civilization. It is located in the archeological region of the Petén Basin in what is now northern Guatemala. Situated in the department of El Petén, the site is part of Guatemala’s Tikal National Park and in 1979 it was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.   read more…

Mountain Railways of India

22 October 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  12 minutes

Darjeeling Himalayan Railway diesel locomotive © Subhrajyoti07/cc-by-sa-4.0

Darjeeling Himalayan Railway diesel locomotive © Subhrajyoti07/cc-by-sa-4.0

The Mountain railways of India are the narrow-gauge railway lines that were built in the mountains of India. Three of them, the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, the Nilgiri Mountain Railway, and the Kalka–Shimla Railway, are collectively designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site under the name “Mountain Railways of India”. The fourth railway, the Matheran Hill Railway, is on the tentative list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. All four are narrow-gauge railways, and the Nilgiri Mountain Railway is also the only rack railway in India. The basis of UNESCO’s designation of the Mountain Railways of India as a World Heritage Site is “outstanding examples of bold, ingenious engineering solutions for the problem of establishing an effective rail link through rugged, mountainous terrain.” The Darjeeling Himalayan Railway received the honor first in 1999 by UNESCO followed by the Nilgiri Mountain Railway in 2005. The Kalka–Shimla Railway received the designation in 2008. The three routes together have been titled the Mountain Railways of India under UNESCO World Heritage Site criteria ii and iv, within the Asia-Pacific region. The Matheran Railway, a fourth mountain line, has been nominated and is pending approval by the international body.   read more…

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