Chichen Itza
Gebel Berkal

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

Sanchi Bernard Joseph Esposo Guerrero

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) Bernard Joseph Esposo Guerrero

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.

Highlights of the old city include the 2,000 year old Narin castle, an intact ice house, working qanats, a few badgirs, what is perhaps the most beautiful dovecote in all of Persia, and the Shah Abassi caravanserai, which also happens to be a component of the Persian Caravanserai - TWHS and quite possibly a part of the Silk Route - TWHS of Iran as well.

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Persian Garden Bernard Joseph Esposo Guerrero

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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The Persian Qanat Bernard Joseph Esposo Guerrero

The Persian Qanat by bernard Joseph Esposo Guerrero

This is probably the UNESCO World Heritage Site I spent the most time in trying to understand how to “properly” visit it during my recent trip in Iran. When I was just about to give up on it, a sign suddenly emerged in the streets of the historic city of Yazd referring to the “Zarch Qanat gallery”. This seems to be an improvement since the previous reviewer went to Yazd last year (exactly 12 months apart!), reporting the glaring lack of any public information about the qanats.

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Citadel of the Ho Dynasty Bernard Joseph Esposo Guerrero

Citadel of the Ho Dynasty by bernard Joseph Esposo Guerrero

Indeed, this place is off the beaten path and the only way that I could make renting a private car worth it was by combining a visit here with a visit to Trang An - Hoa Lu - Van Long; thus, a 2D/1N arranged trip made ticking off two WH sites possible. Contrary to the other reviews that show only disappointment, I was in no doubt impressed by the relics of the Ho citadel. While it's true that it's really just walls and gates, one has to go the level of architecture and construction engineering to appreciate its unique values. The stones used, for example, are definitely of bigger sizes than from other ancient buildings in SE Asia. The way they were fit together also demonstrated high masonry skills as the stone blocks almost have no gaps between them. It is unfair, in my opinion, to impose high expectations on the site as beauty and "grandness" are not really its strengths.

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Name: Bernard Joseph Esposo Guerrero

Country: The Philippines

Visited WHS: 72

Most Impressive: Krakow

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

Update 2017-12-14

  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. Shush (T)
  31. Silk Road Sites in India (T)
  32. Silk Route (Also as Silk Road) (T)
  33. Site d'Angkor Borei et Phnom Da (T)
  34. Sites of Saytagrah, India's non-violent freedom movement (T)
  35. Succulent Karoo Protected Areas (T)
  36. Tape Sialk (T)
  37. Taq-e Bostan (T)
  38. The Collection of Historical Bridges (T)
  39. The Historical City of Maybod (T)
  40. The Historical Village of Abyaneh (T)
  41. The Historical-Cultural Axis of Fin, Sialk, Kashan (T)
  42. The Persian House in Central plateau of Iran (T)
  43. The Victorian & Art Deco Ensemble of Mumbai (T)
  44. Trans-Iranian Railway (T)