These are the UNESCO World Heritage sites that I have been fortunate enough to visit (40) during my life. If you have never been to a WHS, it is truly worth the experience due to their uniqueness in the world and the role they have in history.
Aachen Cathedral (Aachen, Germany) This cathedral was the site selected by Charlemagne to be the seat of the Holy Roman Roman Empire. Charlemagne was crowned here as was every German king after him.Interestingly, the kings were not crowned on the throne, but rather were allowed to sit on it for just ten minutes. In the cathedral is the throne of Charlemagne made of marble believe to have come from the area of Jerusalem. 2012
Angra do Heroismo (Azores Portugal) is the principal city on the island of Terceira in the Azores Islands. Situated on one of the islands in the Azores archipelago, this was an obligatory port of call from the 15th century until the advent of the steamship in the 19th century. The 400-year-old San Sebastião and San João Baptista fortifications are unique examples of military architecture. Damaged by an earthquake in 1980, Angra is now being restored. (Edited 3/26/2012) 2011.
Historic Center of Brugge (Belgium) Brugge is an outstanding example of a medieval historic settlement, which has maintained its historic fabric as this has evolved over the centuries, and where original Gothic constructions form part of the town's identity. As one of the commercial and cultural capitals of Europe, Brugge developed cultural links to different parts of the world. It is closely associated with the school of Flemish Primitive painting. 1991
Independence Hall (USA) The Declaration of Independence (1776) and the Constitution of the United States (1787) were both signed in this building in Philadelphia. The universal principles of freedom and democracy set forth in these documents are of fundamental importance to American history and have also had a profound impact on law-makers around the world. 2009
Lübeck (Germany) the former capital and Queen City of the Hanseatic League – was founded in the 12th century and prospered until the 16th century as the major trading centre for northern Europe. It has remained a centre for maritime commerce to this day, particularly with the Nordic countries. Despite the damage it suffered during the Second World War, the basic structure of the old city, consisting mainly of 15th- and 16th-century patrician residences, public monuments (the famous Holstentor brick gate), churches and salt storehouses, remains unaltered. 2006
Centre of Macau ( O Centro Histórico de Macau) is a collection of over twenty locations that witness the unique assimilation and co-existence of Chinese and Portuguese cultures in Macau, a former Portuguese colony. It represents the architectural legacies of the city's cultural heritage, including monuments such as urban squares, streetscapes, churches and temples.
In 2005 the Historic Centre of Macau was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List, making it the 31st designated World Heritage site in China. It was described by UNESCO as: "with its historic street, residential, religious and public Portuguese and Chinese buildings, the historic centre of Macao provides a unique testimony to the meeting of aesthetic, cultural, architectural and technological influences from East and West," and "...it bears witness to one of the earliest and longest-lasting encounters between China and the West, based on the vibrancy of international trade.
The Palace of Versailles (France) was the principal residence of the French kings from the time of Louis XIV to Louis XVI. Embellished by several generations of architects, sculptors, decorators and landscape architects, it provided Europe with a model of the ideal royal residence for over a century. 1973
Piazza del Duomo, Pisa (Italy) Standing in a large green expanse, Piazza del Duomo houses a group of monuments known the world over. These four masterpieces of medieval architecture – the cathedral, the baptistry, the campanile (the 'Leaning Tower') and the cemetery – had a great influence on monumental art in Italy from the 11th to the 14th century. 1973
Pico Island, (Azores Portugal) This site on the volcanic island of Pico, the second largest in the Azores archipelago, consists of a remarkable pattern of spaced-out, long linear walls running inland from, and parallel to, the rocky shore. The walls were built to protect the thousands of small, contiguous, rectangular plots (currais) from wind and seawater. Evidence of this wine growing style, whose origins date back to the 15th century, is seen the extraordinary assembly of the fields, in houses and early 19th-century manor houses, in wine-cellars, churches and ports. The extraordinarily beautiful man-made landscape of the site is the best remaining area of a once much more widespread practice of viticulture. 2012
Stonehenge (England) Stonehenge and Avebury, in Wiltshire, are among the most famous groups of megaliths in the world. The two sanctuaries consist of circles of menhirs arranged in a pattern whose astronomical significance is still being explored. These holy places and the nearby Neolithic sites are an incomparable testimony to prehistoric times. 2006.
Vatican City (Holy See) The Vatican City, one of the most sacred places in Christendom, attests to a great history and a formidable spiritual venture. A unique collection of artistic and architectural masterpieces lie within the boundaries of this small state. At its centre is St Peter's Basilica, with its double colonnade and a circular piazza in front and bordered by palaces and gardens. The basilica, erected over the tomb of St Peter the Apostle, is the largest religious building in the world, the fruit of the combined genius of Bramante, Raphael, Michelangelo, Bernini and Maderna. 1973
Yellowstone National Park (USA), is located in the Western states of Wyoming, Idaho, and Montana.96% is in Wyoming. The park has over 10,000 geothermal features, over 300 geysers. Aside from geological features, the wildlife is spectacular with bison, grizzly bears, and wolves. Yellowstone was the first national park in the United States established by President Theodore Roosevelt and the U.S. Congress in 1912. (Edited 3/31/2012) 2002
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