UNESCO Adds 21 New World Heritage Sites in 2017

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Looking over the small town of Keswick on the edge of Derwent Water in the Lake District National Park.

Since the late 1970s, UNESCO has been working to save and protect the wonders of the world, both natural and cultural. The World Heritage program aims to identify and protect cultural and natural sites around the world that demonstrate “outstanding value to humanity,” according to their website. Now, new World Heritage Sites are being added.

This year travellers from all across the globe can rejoice as UNESCO has increased their list on this July with 21 new world heritage sites. As a traveller, you have 21 more reasons to be happy.

New World Heritage sites Kulangsu, China
Kulangsu, a Historic International Settlement, was added to the UNESCO’s World Heritage List

The World Heritage program does include many of the worlds most spectacular sites like the Great Barrier Reef in Australia, Inca ruins of Machu Picchu in Peru, Taj Mahal in India just to name a few.

The sites included this year are mainly cultural sites along with 3 natural sites. Overall these sites offer a variety of incentives for people as its picks are both rich and varied in cultural significance. A few of the sites are remote and vulnerable in nature, experiencing them would be a challenge for all travellers. With the new World Heritage Sites, the list comprises of 1073 sites that will amaze anyone.

Here is the list of New World Heritage Sites from 2017
  • Aphrodisias (Turkey)
  • Asmara: An Modernist City of Africa (Eritrea)
  • Assumption Cathedral and Monastery of the town-island of Sviyazhsk (Russian Federation)
  • Caves and Ice Age Art in the Swabian Jura (Germany)
  • Hebron/Al-Khalil Old Town (Palestine)
  • Historic City of Ahmadabad (India)
  • Historic City of Yazd (Iran)
  • Kujataa Greenland: Norse and Inuit Farming at the Edge of the Ice Cap (Denmark)
  • Kulangsu, a Historic International Settlement (China)
  • Landscapes of Dauria (Mongolia)
  • Los Alerces National Park (Argentina)
  • Mbanza Kongo, Vestiges of the Capital of the former Kingdom of Kongo (Angola)
  • Qinghai Hoh Xil (China)
  • Sacred Island of Okinoshima and Associated Sites in the Munakata Region (Japan)
  • Taputapuātea (France)
  • Tarnowskie Góry Lead-Silver-Zinc Mine and its Underground Water Management System (Poland)
  • Temple Zone of Sambor Prei Kuk, Archaeological Site of Ancient Ishanapura (Cambodia)
  • The English Lake District (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland)
  • Valongo Wharf Archaeological Site (Brazil)
  • Venetian Works of Defence between the 16th and 17th Centuries: Stato da Terra –Western Stato da Mar (Croatia)
  • ǂKhomani Cultural Landscape (South Africa)
Travel Restrictions at the Heritage Sites

Not all travellers would be lucky to visit all these sites, as some of them are off limits or in dangerous zones, such as Hebron in Palestine. Among the others are Okinoshima in Japan, where, as per their ancient traditional practices women are not allowed. Recognition was even given to Asmara, cited by UNESCO for its modernist architecture dating to its era as an Italian colony, controversy arose when the United Nations had accused Eritrea’s government of crimes against humanity, including enslavement and murder.

Sambor Prei Kuk in Cambodia - New World Heritage Sites
Sambor Prei Kuk is an archaeological site in Cambodia that dates from the 7th century.

Among the rest, most are accessible by travellers. The English Lake District is no doubt the most popular in the list as it already has over 18 million visitors annually, UNESCO considered this site after looking at the symbiotic sustainable relationship of humans adapting with nature.

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