There are hundreds of UNESCO World Heritage Sites scattered across the globe, but some of these incredible parts of planet Earth are more spectacular than others. These five UNESCO sites are among the most beautiful.
1. Angkor Wat
The pride of this southeast Asian country, Angkor Wat is one of the best reasons to travel to Cambodia. Thousands of travelers comes here each year to explore the magnificent complex of temples, which were once the capitals of the Khmer Empire. The archaeological sites here date back to a period between the 9th and 15th century, and are recognised as some of the most historically important in the region. UNESCO inaugurated Angkor Wat onto their World Heritage list in 1992.
2. Grand Canyon
Famously known as one of the most jaw-dropping sights in the USA, the Grand Canyon is frequently found on a traveler’s bucket list. Grand Canyon National Park became a World Heritage Site way back in 1979, because the gorge is recognised as one of the most important geological sites in the world. What we can see in the Grand Canyon can tell us things about prehistoric life on earth, and paints a picture of the past 2 billion years.
3. Giant’s Causeway
The Giant’s Causeway is a coastal region in Northern Ireland and one of the most unique landscapes in this part of the world. The physical make-up of this site is what makes it special – around 40,000 hexagonal basalt columns are found on the coastline here. It’s thought that these were formed tens of millions of years ago, making them both a curious sights and a clue as to the earth’s activity in prehistoric times. The Giant’s Causeway is a place of myth and legend, and has magical qualities that are sure to draw you in. It was named a World Heritage Site in 1986.
4. Machu Picchu
High up on the to-do list for anyone traveling to Peru, the lost city of Machu Picchu is a must-do for anyone visiting this country. It’s thought that this site was hugely influential for the ancient Inca Empire, and when you visit it’s easy to see why. The truly unique formation and surrounding sweeping scenery of Machu Picchu naturally invoke awe and wonder. It was made a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1983.
Another of the world’s great ancient cities, Petra in Jordan is among the most mesmerising sites in the Middle East. What makes this place unique is that the city if half-carved into red rock rock, which is why it’s so instantly recognizable to so many people. The site it thought to have been inhabited since prehistoric times, and marks an important crossroads between continents. Petra was given the UNESCO World Heritage Site title in 1985.
Have you ever visited these UNESCO sites?