Our world is full of history and culture, it’s what makes us who we are today. UNESCO preserve some of the most important historical and natural sites around the world, so they can be enjoyed by our future generations.
From ruined castles and golden temples to great walls and rainforests filled with life, UNESCO has over 1000 locations on its prestigious list; here are 10 of the most incredible sites.
#10. Abu Simbel, Egypt
This iconic temple system has been standing in Egypt for over 3,000 years. It’s been cut directly into the pinky yellow rock and is fronted by huge statues and ancient hieroglyphics. This incredible feat of engineering is believed to have taken 20 years to create
#9. Yosemite National Park, California – USA
With cascading waterfalls, woodland trails and granite monoliths, Yosemite in California really is an incredible place. Trek through the stunning scenery, climb the infamous El Capitan or hire a bike for some off road fun. You may be lucky enough to spot some of the varied wildlife including Black bear, Coyote and Marmots.
#8. The Acropolis, Athens – Greece
This iconic monument sits atop a hill in Greece’s capital and is the symbol of an ancient Greek civilisation. With the Parthenon and Temple of Athena amongst the ruins on this site, this really is the epitome of Greece’s history
#7. Komodo National Park, Indonesia
Set up as a reserve in 1980 to protect the resident Komodo Dragons, this beautiful National Park consists of three main islands as well as numerous smaller islands. It’s not just the land that’s protected, the surrounding waters also form part of the park with 1000 species of fish, 260 species of coral and 70 species of sponges.
#6. Mount Kenya National Park, Kenya
At 5,199 metres, Mount Kenya is the second highest peak in Africa. The soaring mountain and surrounding parkland was named as a World Heritage Site in 1997 and it’s home to some of Africa’s most endangered species including Elephants, Mole Rats and Rhino. With beautiful Savannah and rolling grasslands, the area is also part of the annual migration route of the African Elephant.
#5. Bahla Fort, Oman
Part of one of the biggest walled cities in the world, the incredible Bahla Fort was built over 600 years ago. The 12th century fort is one of the largest in Oman and after years of restoration, it was granted UNESCO status in 1987.
#4. Brimstone Hill Fortress National Park, Saint Kitts
One of the best preserved fortifications in the Americas, Brimstone Hill Fortress was designed by the British Military, built over 100 years and finished in 1790. It’s surrounded by acres of lush green forest.
#3. Sacred City of Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka
This sprawling ancient complex of soaring towers, glistening pools and sacred temples is nestled amongst the gleaming buildings of the new town. Take time to wander around the Bodhi Tree Temple and the Jetavana; a 120 metre tall structure which was the third tallest in the ancient world.
#2. Huai Kha Khaeng Wildlife Sanctuary, Thailand
Set up as a sanctuary in 1974, this is the largest protected wildlife area in Southeast Asia. With acres of evergreen and bamboo forests complete with winding rivers, it makes the perfect safe habitat for hundreds of species including Asian Black Bear, Crab-eating Macaque, Wild Water Buffalo and Kitti’s Hog-nosed Bat.
#1. Pamukkale (Hierapolis), Turkey
These thermal springs appear from the cliff face to create a series of incredible waterfalls and dazzling white basins. The beautiful setting and therapeutic waters are a huge draw for thousands of visitors every year.
Have you visited an incredible UNESCO World Heritage Site that isn’t listed here? Let me know in the comments below.