Theme Week Hungary – Pécs

23 September 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: European Union, General, European Capital of Culture, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  6 minutes

County Hall of Baranya © Jan Mehlich/cc-by-sa-3.0

County Hall of Baranya © Jan Mehlich/cc-by-sa-3.0

Pécs is the fifth largest city of Hungary, located on the slopes of the Mecsek mountains in the south-west of the country, close to its border with Croatia. It is the administrative and economic centre of Baranya County. Pécs is also the seat of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Pécs.   read more…

Theme Week Hungary

20 September 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Theme Weeks, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  12 minutes

View from Gellert Hill to the Danube in Budapest © flickr.com - Visions of Domino/cc-by-2.0

View from Gellert Hill to the Danube in Budapest © flickr.com – Visions of Domino/cc-by-2.0

Hungary is a country in Central Europe. Spanning 93,030 square kilometres (35,920 sq mi) of the Carpathian Basin, it is bordered by Slovakia to the north, Ukraine to the northeast, Romania to the east and southeast, Serbia to the south, Croatia and Slovenia to the southwest, and Austria to the west. Hungary is a landlocked country. Hungary has a population of 10 million, mostly ethnic Hungarians and a significant Romani minority. Hungarian, the official language, is the world’s most widely spoken Uralic language, and among the few non-Indo-European languages widely spoken in Europe. Budapest is the country’s capital and largest city; other major urban areas include Debrecen, Szeged, Miskolc, Pécs, and Győr.   read more…

Würzburg Residence

20 September 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  11 minutes

Kaisersaal © Andreas Faessler/cc-by-sa-4.0

Kaisersaal © Andreas Faessler/cc-by-sa-4.0

The Würzburg Residence (German: Würzburger Residenz) is a palace in Würzburg, Germany. Johann Lukas von Hildebrandt and Maximilian von Welsch, representatives of the Austrian/South German Baroque style, were involved in the construction, as well as Robert de Cotte and Germain Boffrand, who were followers of the French Style. Balthasar Neumann, court architect of the Bishop of Würzburg, was the principal architect of the Residence, which was commissioned by the Prince-Bishop of Würzburg Johann Philipp Franz von Schönborn and his brother Friedrich Carl von Schönborn in 1720, and completed in 1744. The Venetian painter Giovanni Battista Tiepolo, assisted by his son, Domenico, painted frescoes in the building. Interiors considered masterworks of Baroque/Rococo or Neoclassical architecture and art include the grand staircase, the chapel, and the Imperial Hall. The building was reportedly called the “largest parsonage in Europe” by Napoleon. It was heavily damaged by Allied bombing during World War II, and restoration has been in progress since 1945.   read more…

Reichenau Abbey in Lake Constance

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

Cloisters Reichenau © Schlampi/cc-by-sa-3.0

Cloisters Reichenau © Schlampi/cc-by-sa-3.0

Reichenau Abbey was a Benedictine monastery on Reichenau Island (known in Latin as Augia Dives). It was founded in 724 by the itinerant Saint Pirmin, who is said to have fled Spain ahead of the Moorish invaders, with patronage that included Charles Martel, and, more locally, Count Berthold of the Ahalolfinger and the Alemannian Duke Santfrid I (Nebi). Pirmin’s conflict with Santfrid resulted in his leaving Reichenau in 727. Under his successor Haito the monastery began to flourish. It gained influence in the Carolingian dynasty, under Abbot Waldo of Reichenau (740–814), by educating the clerks who staffed Imperial and ducal chanceries. Abbot Reginbert of Reichenau (-846) built up the important book collection. Abbot Walafrid Strabo (842–849), who was educated at Reichenau, was renowned as a poet and Latin scholar.   read more…

Sacred Mountains of China

8 September 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  10 minutes

Sacred Mountains of China © Pufacz/cc-by-sa-3.0

Sacred Mountains of China © Pufacz/cc-by-sa-3.0

The Sacred Mountains of China are divided into several groups. The Five Great Mountains refers to five of the most renowned mountains in Chinese history, and they were the subjects of imperial pilgrimage by emperors throughout ages. They are associated with the supreme God of Heaven and the five main cosmic deities of Chinese traditional religion. The group associated with Buddhism is referred to as the Four Sacred Mountains of Buddhism, and the group associated with Taoism is referred to as the Four Sacred Mountains of Taoism. The sacred mountains have all been important destinations for pilgrimage, the Chinese expression for pilgrimage being a shortened version of an expression which means “paying respect to a holy mountain“.   read more…

Babylon in Iraq

6 September 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  11 minutes

Ishtar Gate in Babylon © Ali Kareem Yousif/cc-by-sa-4.0

Ishtar Gate in Babylon © Ali Kareem Yousif/cc-by-sa-4.0

Babylon was the capital city of the ancient Babylonian empire, which itself is a term referring to either of two separate empires in the Mesopotamian area in antiquity. These two empires achieved regional dominance between the 19th and 15th centuries BC, and again between the 7th and 6th centuries BC. The city, built along both banks of the Euphrates river, had steep embankments to contain the river’s seasonal floods. The earliest known mention of Babylon as a small town appears on a clay tablet from the reign of Sargon of Akkad (2334–2279 BC) of the Akkadian Empire. The site of the ancient city lies just south of present-day Baghdad. UNESCO inscribed Babylon as a World Heritage Site in 2019.   read more…

Haram esh-Sharif or Temple Mount in East Jerusalem

3 September 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage, Union for the Mediterranean Reading Time:  10 minutes

© Andrew Shiva/cc-by-sa-4.0

© Andrew Shiva/cc-by-sa-4.0

Known to Muslims as the Haram esh-Sharif (“the Noble Sanctuary”, or “the Noble Sanctuary of Jerusalem”) and the Al Aqsa Compound, and to Jews as Temple Mount (“Mount of the House [of God, i.e. the Temple in Jerusalem]”), is a hill in the UNESCO World Heritage Site Old City of Jerusalem that for thousands of years has been venerated as a holy site in Christianity, Islam and Islam, and Judaism alike.   read more…

Sagrada Família in Barcelona

1 September 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, House of the Month, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  8 minutes

© Bernard Gagnon/cc-by-sa-3.0

© Bernard Gagnon/cc-by-sa-3.0

The Basílica de la Sagrada Família (Spanish: Basílica de la Sagrada Familia; ‘Basilica of the Holy Family‘), also known as the Sagrada Família, is a large unfinished Roman Catholic minor basilica in the Eixample district of Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain. Designed by the Spanish architect Antoni Gaudí (1852–1926), his work on the building is part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site. On 7 November 2010, Pope Benedict XVI consecrated the church and proclaimed it a minor basilica.   read more…

Yungang Grottoes in China

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

Cave 12 © G41rn8/cc-by-sa-4.0

Cave 12 © G41rn8/cc-by-sa-4.0

The Yungang Grottoes, formerly the Wuzhoushan Grottoes, are ancient Chinese Buddhist temple grottoes near the city of Datong in the province of Shanxi. They are excellent examples of rock-cut architecture and one of the three most famous ancient Buddhist sculptural sites of China. The others are Longmen and Mogao.   read more…

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