For hundreds of years, or possibly millennia, some of the world’s most magnificent ancient monuments have been lost or hidden beneath jungles, deserts, or farmlands all around the planet. People talking about lost cities or random discoveries on their way to work have resulted in incredible finds that are today on display for everyone to see. Many of these locations have been added to the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Some of these once-in-a-millennium gems have been drawing visitors for hundreds of years, and they’re just as fascinating now as they were when they were discovered. It may be a cliché to say that there has never been a better time to explore the planet’s greatest attractions, but it is also true. While all of them are significant, some are arguably more spectacular than others. Discover ancient wonders with our selection of the top World Heritage Sites. Check Out Top World Heritage Sites In Year 2022.
Machu Picchu, Perúu
Built in lush, mountainous terrain high above the Urubamba River, Machu Picchu lies in one of the most stunning settings of any archeological site in the world. Often referred to as the “Lost City of the Incas,” it was rediscovered in 1911 by Hiram Bingham, who made several trips there over the next decade to study and excavate its many ruins. Today, Machu Picchu is Peru’s most-visited tourist attraction and one of the world’s most famous archeological sites.
Great Pyramid of Giza, Egypt
The last remaining wonder of the ancient world, the Great Pyramid of Giza was built around 2560 BCE for Pharaoh Khufu (also known as Cheops). It is the largest and oldest of the three pyramids in Giza, and at over 480 feet (146 meters) high, it was the tallest manmade structure in the world for over 3,800 years. Although the interior is mostly bare, it is still an awe-inspiring sight, and a visit to Giza is incomplete without seeing it.
Taj Mahal, India
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Built by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his late wife Mumtaz Mahal, the Taj Mahal is one of the most iconic buildings in the world. Constructed entirely of white marble, it took over 20 years and 20,000 workers to complete. Today, it stands as a symbol of love and one of the most popular tourist destinations in India.
Great Wall of China
The Great Wall of China is one of the most famous manmade structures in the world. Built over 2,000 years ago, it stretches for over 13,000 miles (21,000 kilometers) across northern China.
Although much of the wall has fallen into disrepair, several sections have been restored and are open to visitors. A visit to the Great Wall is a must-do when traveling to China.
Petra is an ancient city located in what is now southern Jordan. carved into the sandstone cliffs by the Nabataeans, it features a number of impressive buildings and monuments, including the Treasury, the Monastery, and the Royal Tombs. Petra was rediscovered by European explorers in 1812 and has since become one of Jordan’s most popular tourist attractions.
Angkor Wat, Cambodia
Angkor Wat is a temple complex in Siem Reap, Cambodia. Built in the 12th century by King Suryavarman II, it is the largest religious monument in the world, covering an area of over 400 acres (162 hectares). Although it was originally built as a Hindu temple, it was later converted to a Buddhist temple. Today, Angkor Wat is one of Cambodia’s most popular tourist destinations and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Chichen Itza, Mexico
Chichen Itza was a large Maya city located in what is now Yucatán, Mexico. Built between the 9th and 12th centuries, it was one of the largest Maya cities and served as a regional center for trade and politics. The city is best known for its large pyramid, known as El Castillo, which served as a temple to the god Kukulcan. Chichen Itza was rediscovered by European explorers in the 16th century and has since become one of Mexico’s most popular tourist destinations.
Great Barrier Reef, Australia
The Great Barrier Reef is the world’s largest coral reef system. It is located off the coast of Queensland, Australia and covers an area of over 133,000 square miles (344,000 square kilometers).