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Tourism - the World Heritage List

Updated on April 28, 2012


The World Heritage List includes 936 properties forming part of the cultural and natural heritage which the World Heritage Org considers as having outstanding universal value. This site has a wide array of materials from News and Events to Activities and Publications

These include 725 cultural, 183 natural and 28 mixed properties in 153 States Parties.

The minaret of Jam in Afghanistan
The minaret of Jam in Afghanistan

The 65m-tall Minaret of Jam is a graceful, soaring structure, dating back to the 12th century. Covered in elaborate brickwork with a blue tile inscription at the top, it is noteworthy for the quality of its architecture and decoration, which represent the culmination of an architectural and artistic tradition in this region. Its impact is heightened by its dramatic setting, a deep river valley between towering mountains in the heart of the Ghur province.

 Gjirokastra's medieval houses dot the hillside.
Gjirokastra's medieval houses dot the hillside.

Gjirokastra, in the Drinos river valley in southern Albania

The historic town of Gjirokastra, in the Drinos river valley in southern Albania, is a rare example of a well-preserved Ottoman town, built by farmers of large estate. The 13th-century citadel provides the focal point of the town with its typical tower houses (Turkish kule).

Skellig Michael in Ireland

The Rock off the western Irish Coast known as "Skellig Michael" was inhabited by Irish Monks for over 600 years; from 588-1222 A.D. "Skellig" (or skeilic) is an Irish word used to describe a rock island out in the ocean. In the Middle Ages many high places were named "Michael" after the Archangel Michael. It is home to some ancient stone bee-hive huts. The monastery was founded by Fionán, believed to be one of the original monks who was a member of the community of St. Brendan the Navigator.

This monastic complex, perched since about the 7th century on the steep sides of the rocky island of Skellig Michael, some 12 km off the coast of south-west Ireland, illustrates the very spartan existence of the first Irish Christians. Since the extreme remoteness of Skellig Michael has until recently discouraged visitors, the site is exceptionally well preserved.

monks beehive stone cell-home...

photo by Des Lavelle
photo by Des Lavelle


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    • Drax profile image

      des donnelly 10 years ago from NYC....

      great, glad you found this to be of interest... I must look at the location to see who controls that area... the worst thing with this type of war is that one or other of these barbarians destroys it for no good reason... I will add a situation update... thanks ...Drax...

    • dinamars profile image

      dinamars 10 years ago from France

      wow, great information. I've never heard of the minaret in Afghanistan (would like to go there, but... is it possible in this war time?) and another one in Albania (would really want to go there badly!! hopefully so...!!). you've been there? thanks for the posting :).

    • Drax profile image

      des donnelly 10 years ago from NYC....

      hey thanks Rmnathan

    • Rmnathan profile image

      Rmnathan 10 years ago from Sharjah

      Good information. I enjoyed reading it.

    • Drax profile image

      des donnelly 11 years ago from NYC....

      thanks a lot Jimmy, I have to admit the same except for Skellig M... many of these sites listed by UNESCO are under threat from humans or from nature so if you see any you really like it would be go and visit them before they disappear... Drax

    • jimmythejock profile image

      James Paterson 11 years ago from Scotland

      Great hub drax very informative and educational,i have never heard of any of the featured places even the irish ones.....jimmy