Chichen Itza
Gebel Berkal

World Heritage Site

for World Heritage Travellers

Shannon O'Donnell Profile

I'm a travel writer on the road since 2008 traveling and sharing stories of responsible tourism. Although I am not on a mission to see every WHS, I do enjoy visiting them in all the places I visit!

Visited Sites Shannon O'Donnell

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  • Cultural
  • Natural
  • Mixed

Recent Reviews Shannon O'Donnell

Plitvice Lakes 14-Dec-18

Plitvice Lakes by Shannon O'Donnell

Plitvice Lakes is undeniably beautiful and the National Park is well managed—both things that would usually earn this five stars, but it's just too popular to be as enjoyable as it could have been. The park uses an elaborate system of boardwalks to lead tourists through the lakes and waterfalls all throughout the area, which means everyone is on virtually the same set path through the park. And if you happen to arrive when a few of the huge tour buses do too, then it can be intense.

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Kathmandu Valley 20-Sep-18

Kathmandu Valley by Shannon O'Donnell

I spent two months in Nepal, and good amount of that time was in the Kathmandu Valley volunteering in the town of Pharping and exploring the Valley outside the of the city. Kathmandu itself just oozes history and although it suffers from some serious air pollution, which leaves buildings and vibes a bit grimy at times, it's also easy to overlook that side since it holds so many historic sites. Although the earthquake damaged some of the main historic sites, they are not gone and the fact that most still stand is a testament to the city's long and rich timeline. 

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Ancient Kyoto 18-Sep-18

Ancient Kyoto by Shannon O'Donnell

No single description or image can encapsulate the sheer beauty of Kyoto's ancient temples. On the one hand, it's a large and fast-paced modern city and that surprised me. I was taken aback when walking through shiny metal buildings and city blocks to find my guesthouse. But once you realize that Kyoto is a modern city with an ancient history preserved within several districts of the city, it's easier to find the fascinating areas and the deep history. 

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Bagan Archaeological Area and Monuments (T) 16-Aug-18

Bagan Archaeological Area and Monuments (T) by Shannon O'Donnell

It's nearly impossible to visit Bagan and not find at least one temple or vista awe-inspiring. I traveled with a Burmese family doing an annual pilgrimage to Bagan, and it was interesting to see how their trip differed from some of the more classic ways that tourists tour it: via bicycle and in just a day. We started before dawn, when it was still dark and headed to Mount Popa, where we trucked it up the mountain and began what would be two days of temple hopping. After each visit, we would pile back into the bed of the pickup truck and head with our incense, flowers, and gold leaf to the next spot. 

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Monuments, Sites and Cultural Landscape of Chiang Mai, Capital of Lanna (T) 15-Aug-18

Monuments, Sites and Cultural Landscape of Chiang Mai, Capital of Lanna (T) by Shannon O'Donnell

After just one visit to Chiang Mai, I knew that it was easily one of my favorite places in the entire country. I spent a year in living in there and it truly is the “Rose of the North,” as they like to say. Chiang Mai holds the heartbeat of Lanna Thai culture, which is actually quite different from the culture and food of southern Thailand.

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Name: Shannon O'Donnell

Country: USA

Visited WHS: 96

Most Impressive:

Proposal New WHS:


Update 2018-06-02 06:58:25

  1. Ancient Kyoto : 5.0
  2. Antigua Guatemala : 5.0
  3. Hoi An : 5.0
  4. Kathmandu Valley : 5.0
  5. Plitvice Lakes : 4.0
  6. Agra Fort
  7. Ahmadabad
  8. Amsterdam Canal Ring
  9. Ancient Nara
  10. Angkor
  11. Assisi
  12. Bali Subak system
  13. Baptism Site "Bethany Beyond the Jordan"
  14. Belem
  15. Belize Barrier Reef
  16. Burgos Cathedral
  17. Cape Floral Region
  18. Cesky Krumlov
  19. Chichen-Itza
  20. Chitwan National Park
  21. Christiansfeld
  22. Copan
  23. Cornwall and West Devon Mining Landscape
  24. Edinburgh
  25. Everglades
  26. Florence
  27. Fraser Island
  28. Grand Canyon
  29. Great Barrier Reef
  30. Great Himalayan National Park
  31. Great Smoky Mountains
  32. Great Wall
  33. Greater Blue Mountains
  34. Guanajuato
  35. Ha Long Bay
  36. Hué
  37. Independence Hall
  38. Istanbul
  39. Itsukushima Shrine
  40. La Fortaleza
  41. Lake District
  42. Luang Prabang
  43. Maloti Drakensberg
  44. Mexico City and Xochimilco
  45. Mostar
  46. Mtskheta
  47. Ngorongoro
  48. Oaxaca and Monte Alban
  49. Old Havana
  50. Panamá
  51. Paris, Banks of the Seine
  52. Petra
  53. Portovenere, Cinque Terre, and the Islands
  54. Prague
  55. Pyrénées - Mont Perdu
  56. Pyu Ancient Cities
  57. Quseir Amra
  58. Redwood
  59. Rideau Canal
  60. Rio Platano Biosphere Reserve
  61. Rome
  62. Route of Santiago de Compostela
  63. Routes of Santiago de Compostela in France
  64. San Miguel de Allende
  65. Santiago de Compostela
  66. Sceilg Mhichíl
  67. Serengeti
  68. Silk Roads
  69. Sintra
  70. Skocjan Caves
  71. Split
  72. Statue of Liberty
  73. Stone Town of Zanzibar
  74. Stonehenge
  75. Sulaiman-Too
  76. Sydney Opera House
  77. Taj Mahal
  78. Tasmanian Wilderness
  79. Temple of Heaven
  80. Tikal National Park
  81. Tower of London
  82. Trinidad and the Valley de los Ingenios
  83. Uluru
  84. Um er-Rasas
  85. Vatican City
  86. Venetian Works of Defence
  87. Venice and its Lagoon
  88. Verona
  89. Versailles
  90. Victoria Falls
  91. Vredefort Dome
  92. Wadi Rum
  93. Western Tien-Shan
  94. Westminster
  95. Works of Antoni Gaudí
  96. Yagul and Mitla
  1. Ancient cities of Upper Myanmar : Innwa, Amarapura, Sagaing, Mingun, Mandalay (T)
  2. Archaeological Site and Historic Centre of Panamá City (T)
  3. Ayeyawady River Corridor (T)
  4. Bagan Archaeological Area and Monuments (T)
  5. Brooklyn Bridge (T)
  6. Cat Tien National Park (T)
  7. Civil Rights Movement Sites (T)
  8. Classical Karst (in Slovene language: Klasicni kras) (T)
  9. Dana Biosphere Reserve (T)
  10. David Gareji Monasteries and Hermitage (T)
  11. Delhi - A Heritage City (T)
  12. Ha Long Bay – Cat Ba Archipelago (T)
  13. Historical city of Izamal (Izamal, Mayan continuity in an Historical City) (T)
  14. Inle Lake (T)
  15. Jaipur city, Rajasthan India (T)
  16. Jerash Archaeological City (Ancient Meeting Place of East and West) (T)
  17. La Rioja and Rioja Alavesa Vine and Wine Cultural Landscape (T)
  18. Lake Maggiore and Lake D'Orta lakelands (T)
  19. Los Petenes-Ría Celestún (T)
  20. Monuments, Sites and Cultural Landscape of Chiang Mai, Capital of Lanna (T)
  21. Mta-Tusheti (T)
  22. Mujib Nature Reserve (T)
  23. Protected area of Lake Atitlán: multiple use (T)
  24. Qasr Al-Mushatta (T)
  25. Qasr Bshir (a Roman Castellum) (T)
  26. Samtavisi Cathedral (T)
  27. Sarajevo - unique symbol of universal multiculture - continual open city (T)
  28. Silk Roads Sites in Kyrgyzstan (T)
  29. Sites mémoriaux du génocide : Nyamata, Murambi, Bisesero et Gisozi (T)
  30. Tbilisi Historic District (T)
  31. Temples, Shrines and other structures of Ancient Kamakura (T)
  32. That Luang de Vientiane (T)
  33. The African Great Rift Valley - The Maasai Mara (T)
  34. The Burren (T)
  35. The Central Slave and Ivory Trade Route (T)
  36. The city of Bergamo (T)
  37. The Colonial Transisthmian Route of Panamá (Ruta Colonial Transístmica de Panamá) (T)
  38. The Great Rift Valley - The Kenya Lakes System (T)
  39. The Historic City of Dublin (T)
  40. The Royal Sites of Ireland: Cashel, Dún Ailinne, Hill of Uisneach, Rathcroghan Complex, and Tara Complex (T)
  41. Town of Chichicastenango (T)
  42. Wooden Monasteries of Konbaung Period : Ohn Don, Sala, Pakhangyi, Pakhannge, Legaing, Sagu, Shwe-Kyaung (Mandalay) (T)