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World Heritage Site

for World Heritage Travellers

Bernard Joseph Esposo Guerrero Profile

It is with no surprise that I have a fascination towards World Heritage Sites as I grew up in the Northern region of the Philippines that boasts four W.H. Sites (Vigan, 2 Baroque Churches, and the Rice Terraces). This actually makes this area as a major cultural and heritage hotspot in my country.

Also, I really just feel connected with most of the places inscribed as W.H.S. I enjoy being amazed and stunned by some of the world's best wonders and gifts to humanity. The rush of blood I get when I see sites brings me a lot of joy. I do not know why exactly, but it always happens. It is what it is.

I also like talking about the sites I have visited and my experiences in seeing them, even if it makes me appear like a geek more than anything - let's face it, serious and informed heritage trips are not a popular tourism agenda.

Any question, let me know:

Visited Sites Bernard Joseph Esposo Guerrero

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  • Cultural
  • Natural
  • Mixed

Recent Reviews Bernard Joseph Esposo Guerrero

Victorian Gothic and Art Deco Ensemble of Mumbai 07-Jul-18

Victorian Gothic and Art Deco Ensemble of Mumbai by Bernard Joseph Esposo Guerrero

Reaching Mumbai via the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST) was indeed special, and I waited for 3 years before I could apty claim to have ticked off a rare feat: that I was able to visit a WHS by arriving at another separate one. My friend who picked me up at the terminus and I spent some few hours in the inscribed property of Mumbai before heading out to Elephanta Island. Contrary to the image of Mumbai in mainstream media being so busy, dirty, and crowded, I was pleasantly surprised to find out that that part was not as bad as I thought! Our wandering from the Fort precinct to the Oval area was a wonderful experience and that face of Mumbai really looked like it was taken out of London, with an Indian flare to it. Just a few metres away and you get into another world altogether, the Art Deco ensemble, which I wished I also spent more time on. Overall, it is not hard to understand and see why Mumbai is a true world-class city not only for its economic and trading role in history, but, more importantly, for its architectural gems.

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Anuradhapura 29-May-18

Anuradhapura by Bernard Joseph Esposo Guerrero

As a cultural worker, hunting for World Heritage Sites has gone beyond just seeing sites. Rather, it has become more of experiencing them. Hence, in the Anuradhapura vs Polonnaruwa debate, clearly, I would have to give it to the former. The first capital of Sri Lanka remains very much alive today, attracting more devoted pilgrims than actual tourists. While most of the key monuments here are dagobas (local term for stupa), and the variety of architecture is not as diverse as that of Polonnaruwa's, there is a great amount of history in each of them that have been made more special by the reverence that the people continuously attach to them up to these days. In fact, the age of the original monuments here would rival those Buddhist monuments in India, which was really surprising to find out. Not only were they some of the tallest monuments ever seen in the ancient world, but they also stand as pillars as to why Anuradhapura is titled as a "Sacred City", and not just an "Ancient City" as in the case of Polonnaruwa and even Sigiriya. There are two other sacred cities in Sri Lanka which we were also fortunate to see: the Sacred City of Kandy -- also a WHS -- and the Sacred City of Tissamaharama. 

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Sanchi 04-Feb-18

Sanchi by Bernard Joseph Esposo Guerrero

Sanchi is a pleasant site to visit and going there is convenient too from Bhopal. I went to this WHS via train, and came back on a bus, both took less than an hour. The Great Stupa is surprisingly the most well-preserved structure there and it could, in my opinion, easily have been a WHS on its own as a single monument for its history and high level or artistry. The elevated site is relatively large with various ruins of other Buddhist temples and shrines. I enjoyed some good 2 hours on site, absorbing all the details, of which some date back to 300BC -- it is after all the oldest standing stone structure in the subcontinent. The museum at the base is also interesting, most especially the stone pillars with erotic scenes displayed in the garden.

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The Historical City of Maybod (T) 30-Jul-17

The Historical City of Maybod (T) by bernard Joseph Esposo Guerrero

With the recent inscription of Yazd, I am not quite sure how Maybod, another silk road desert city in the same region, would be able to position itself differently and subsequently provide a fresh perspective/OUV to the list.

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Persian Garden 16-Jun-17

Persian Garden by bernard Joseph Esposo Guerrero

During our Iran visit in May 2017, we ticked off three: Fin garden in Kashan, the ancient garden in Pasargadae, and Eram garden in Shiraz. We also had a fair glimpse of Chehel Sotun garden in Esfahan from its gates. However, after having seen India's Persian gardens earlier in 2015, which were adopted by the Moghuls using no less than Persian artisans, how should we appreciate the Persian gardens from the country where the tradition originated?

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Name: Bernard Joseph Esposo Guerrero

Country: The Philippines

Visited WHS: 80

Most Impressive: Krakow

Proposal New WHS: Galleon Trade Route; Bagan; San Sebastian Basilica Minore - Manila; Old Bangkok; fields of Jars.

  1. Ancient Buddhist Site, Sarnath, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh (T)
  2. Apo Reef Natural Park (T)
  3. Baroque Churches of the Philippines (Extension) (T)
  4. Chocolate Hills Natural Monument (T)
  5. Coron Island Natural Biotic Area (T)
  6. Delhi - A Heritage City (T)
  7. El Nido-Taytay Managed Resource Protected Area (T)
  8. Ensemble de Banteay Chmar (T)
  9. Ha Long Bay – Cat Ba Archipelago (T)
  10. Historical City Centre of Yogyakarta (T)
  11. Human Rights, Liberation Struggle and Reconciliation: Nelson Mandela Legacy Sites (T)
  12. Iconic Saree Weaving Clusters of India (T)
  13. Industrial Heritage of textile in the central Plateau of Iran (T)
  14. Jaipur city, Rajasthan India (T)
  15. Jame' (Congregational) Mosque of Esfahan (T)
  16. Kerman Historical-Cultural Structure (T)
  17. Khorramabad Valley (T)
  18. Liberation Heritage Route (T)
  19. Mayon Volcano Natural Park (T)
  20. Mountain Railways of India (Extension) (T)
  21. Mt. Iglit-Baco National Park (T)
  22. Nasqsh-e Rostam and Naqsh-e Rajab (T)
  23. Neolithic Shell Midden Sites in Lal-lo and Gattaran Municipalities (T)
  24. Northern Sierra Madre Natural Park (T)
  25. Paleolithic Archaelogical Sites in Cagayan Valley (T)
  26. Persepolis and other relevant buildings (T)
  27. Persian Caravanserai (T)
  28. Petroglyphs and Petrographs of the Philippines (T)
  29. Semarang Old Town (T)
  30. Seruwila to Sri Pada (Sacred Foot Print Shrine), Ancient pilgrim route along the Mahaweli river in Sri Lanka (T)
  31. Shush (T)
  32. Silk Road Sites in India (T)
  33. Silk Route (Also as Silk Road) (T)
  34. Site d'Angkor Borei et Phnom Da (T)
  35. Sites of Saytagrah, India's non-violent freedom movement (T)
  36. Succulent Karoo Protected Areas (RSA) (T)
  37. Tape Sialk (T)
  38. Taq-e Bostan (T)
  39. The Collection of Historical Bridges (T)
  40. The Historical City of Maybod (T)
  41. The Historical Village of Abyaneh (T)
  42. The Historical-Cultural Axis of Fin, Sialk, Kashan (T)
  43. The Persian House in Central plateau of Iran (T)
  44. Trans-Iranian Railway (T)