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2019 - A Year in Review(s)

2019 has been yet another excellent year for “reviews” of visits to WHS and TWHS. During some months the queue with new reviews was so long that it could take up to 3 weeks before yours was published. It has calmed down a bit lately, so keep them flowing in!

The Statistics

The main review statistics for 2019:

  • 891 new reviews have been added of both WHS and TWHS, that’s a 22% rise since 2018 and 61% compared to 2017
  • 91 different people contributed (see Top 10 below)
  • 14 WHS were reviewed for the first time (excluding the new, 2019, WHS of which all but 1 have also been already written about)

We do now have 7,753 reviews publicized and have covered 1094 of the 1121 WHS. These are the ones still unreviewed...

Among the 891 new reviews, 357 are of TWHS. There certainly is a shift visible towards reviewing TWHS instead of WHS that have been covered well enough already.

Memorable reviews

It was actually Jay T who, during the meet-up in Scotland this summer, recommended the travel website of Michael Ayers to me. Michael is a slow traveler because he does most of it on a bike. But whatever the state of the roads or the circumstances, he reaches those hard to visit WHS. To get to Surtsey, he found someone with a boat…

Squiffy has treated us to a number of well-written accounts this year. In his profile he states: “I discovered the World Heritage List back in 2004 and it formed a major focus of my free time for a good decade or so. I never knew that there was such an active community of fellow like-minded nerds out here.” Saltaire is a good read, but I’d nominate his review looking back to a visit to Palmyra in 2009.

The 2019 Tsunami award for struggling on to tick a WHS despite travel mishaps goes to Nan. He went hiking in Laponia – 11 hours and 35km in muddy conditions without proper hiking shoes. And there was no hot meal waiting for him at the finish, just the last (and only?) bus of the day.

And while 99% of the WH community is totally fed up with the number of vineyards on the List and the repeated visits to similar landscapes it requires, Clyde stayed for 4-5 days in the Vineyard Landscape of Piedmont. He visited all 6 locations and wrote a glowing review of this Italian vineyard WHS.

In the ‘natural disasters’ category, Joel Baldwin testified to a ‘pile of ash’ after the dec 2018 eruption of Anak Krakatau – just a few months after Clyde’s report before the event: Ujung Kulon National Park.

We’ve welcomed more and more reviewers based in China on this website as well. All Chinese WHS are covered in a certain depth and the new Migratory Bird entry was quickly picked up by both Zoe and Zos. Zehuan treated us to a Chinese insider’s view of Lushan National Park.

Are there any memorable reviews from 2019 that you’d like to put into the spotlight again?

Els - 22 December 2019

Leave a comment


Squiffy 29 December 2019

Many thanks for the mention. I do worry about how much value I can add through reviews now my travelling to new places has been curtailed by children so this really is appreciated.

The detail contained in the reviews on this site are fantastic for scoping out future travels though!

Chris W. 28 December 2019

Happy 2020 everyone!

I have no specific sights from 2019 allthough Baalbek was really impressive. Also went on my first safari ever in Pendjari park (will make a review later as it's really worth going).

Going to continue my way of travel in 2020. Don't care to much about numbers at the moment. Just visiting places I like most, and trying to get to more remote places rather as the obvious which are "easy ticks".

Jay T 23 December 2019

I love seeing all the reviews on this site, and I remember each of the ones Els mentioned above (what timing to get reviews before and after the Anak Krakatau eruption). There have been some great new reviewers this year, such as GabLabCebu, who has recently been writing about travels through Israel and Egypt. I particularly appreciated the detailed overview on the rice terraces in the Philippines, which I hope to visit some day.

The reviews are my favorite part of this site, so thanks to all the regular contributers throughout the past year -- you keep me wanting to plan new trips! Most importantly, thanks to Els -- I look forward to these blog posts and reviews each Sunday.

Meltwaterfalls 22 December 2019

Thanks for the round up, I’ve really enjoyed reading throughout the year, even if I haven’t contributed as much.

Also I’m glad you have picked out Jay T and Squiffy both of whom I have throughly enjoyed.

Nan 22 December 2019

was looking forward to the eoy review :)

happy holidays everyone!