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World Heritage Site

for World Heritage Travellers

20 Most Recent Community Reviews


The Murge of Altamura (T) Tsunami

The Murge of Altamura (T) by Tsunami

I arrived in Altamura (which seems to mean High Wall) at about 14:30 on a Monday by bus from Gioia del Colle, as I was coming from Taranto, but Altamura can easily be visited from Bari TWHS or Matera WHS by train, as it is located on the rail line between these 2 cities. 

First, even though I only became aware of Altamura because of its TWHS status, the walled old town was quite pleasant with a marvelous cathedral, museums, and many cafes / restaurants populated by who appeared to be Italian tourists.  

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Heritage of Mercury Tsunami

Heritage of Mercury by Tsunami

I took a bus from Logatec to Idrija, but the bus stop was not at the Logatec train station, and the closest bus stop to the train station was here: 45°55'01.8"N 14°13'26.9"E

I spent about 22 hours in Idrija, from 13:30 on Monday to 11:45 on Tuesday in February.  It was a busy 22 hours, which made the visit more fun for me. 

When I got off the bus one stop before the Idrija bus station, the driver asked me where I'm going.  I said "To the museum," and he said "The (Castle) Museum is at the next stop."  I had meant the Smelting Plant Museum, which the driver was not aware of.  

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Willandra Lakes Clyde

Willandra Lakes by Clyde

I visited this WHS in January 2018. Since I had read positive reviews on Harry Nanya Tours and reading that a 4WD is more suitable to visit Mungo National Park, I booked way ahead to secure a spot on the afternoon and sunset tour. Communication was swift and I received a booking confirmation shortly after. A few months after I double checked and was told not to worry but to simply confirm my arrival at Mildura the day before or on the day.

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Plitvice Lakes Tsunami

Plitvice Lakes by Tsunami

So impressed when I visited Plitvice Lakes in spring 2010 that I went back there with my then-girlfriend in summer the following year.  Upon my first visit, I said if the US had Grand Canyon, Europe had Plitvice Lakes.  But after seeing amazing photos of the park covered in snow in Google Images, I had been seeking a chance to go back there in winter, and the chance finally came this winter.

Upon hearing that the park could be closed due to snow in winter, I decided to stay overnight at the park to increase my chance of entering the park and booked an inn about 2 km south of Entrance 2.  I thought I could easily walk for 2 km.

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Australian Fossil Mammal Sites Clyde

Australian Fossil Mammal Sites by Clyde

I visited this WHS in January 2018, focusing on South Australia's only WHS - Naracoorte Caves National Park. I had prebooked online (32 dollars) to secure a place for the Victoria Fossil Cave guided tour at 14:15 (it takes roughly 1 hr). If there are any palaeontologist geeks who would like to invest more time (and money!) there's also a WH tour to Victoria Fossil Cave and Blanche Cave to also visit research areas not usually seen by the general public.

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Stari Ras and Sopocani Tsunami

Stari Ras and Sopocani by Tsunami

I had to create another WHS hunting trip itinerary around my annual skiing trip, and this winter the ski resort of my choice was at Jahorina, Bosnia, the site of the 1984 Winter Olympics. So I attempted to bag remaining WHSs in Serbia, Bosnia, Croatia, Slovenia and Italy. Unlike last winter when I couldn't move around in Bulgaria due to criplingly heavy snow, there wasn't so much snow in the Balkan this winter, so I was able to follow my itinerary fairly well, although bus timetables I got off internet in Serbia and Bosnia were way off. 

Flew from Berlin to Nis in Serbia and took bus from Nis through Kraljevo and Usce to Novi Pazar. 

The day I arrived in Novi Pazar, I just walked to St. Peter's Church, which was about 2 km from my hotel.

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Royal Exhibition Building Clyde

Royal Exhibition Building by Clyde

I visited this WHS in January 2018 before heading towards the Great Ocean Road. I had prebooked the guided heritage tour over the phone to make sure I could visit the Royal Exhibition Building's (REB) interior.

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Great Smoky Mountains Jay T

Great Smoky Mountains by Jay T

Great Smoky Mountains National Park was the first World Heritage Site I visited, part of a family vacation when I was six. I have fond memories of the trip and the blue-grey mist over the mountains, but much time has passed since then, so I decided to revisit the park in the summer of 2016 while on a road trip to Atlanta, Georgia. The park is a wonderful encapsulation of Appalachian culture, with small settlements and mills scattered throughout the forest. There are many other similar state and national parks throughout the Appalachian Mountains, but Great Smoky Mountains (and likely its family-oriented gateway towns) retains a mythos that continues to draw vacationers from all over the East Coast of the United States. During my visit, I toured an old farmstead off the Roaring Fork loop road and hiked up to scenic Grotto Falls, an easy and beautiful trail.

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Wet Tropics of Queensland Clyde

Wet Tropics of Queensland by Clyde

I visited this WHS in January 2018. Having already visited a number of rainforests, we decided to visit this WHS as an easy day trip from Cairns.

After arriving at the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway Terminal in Smithfield, the whole cable car ride (7.5km) over the rainforest canopy took around 40 minutes (not including time spent at each station). There are 2 worthwhile stops: Red Peak Station and Barron Falls Station. Red Peak Station is the highest point at 545 metres above sea level and there is a 200 metre boardwalk where you can easily see primitive fern-like cycads, elkhorns, staghorns, bird's nest ferns, Kauri pines, Alexandra palms, Caribbean pine trees, fan palm trees, a variegated fig and a banyan tree, apart from several metallic starlings.

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Great Barrier Reef Clyde

Great Barrier Reef by Clyde

I visited this WHS in December 2017 and January 2018 from Hamilton Island and from Cairns. In all I dedicated a week to this extensive WHS to be able to cover different areas and features of this marine WHS by boat, by plane and by helicopter.

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Church of the Ascension, Kolomenskoye Yuri Samozvanov

Church of the Ascension, Kolomenskoye by Yuri Samozvanov

UNique – 6/10

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Monasteries of Daphni, Hosios Loukas and Nea Moni of Chios Solivagant

Monasteries of Daphni, Hosios Loukas and Nea Moni of Chios by Solivagant

As indicated in previous reviews, for many years it has only been possible to make very limited visits to the Monastery of Daphni, situated in the Western suburbs of Athens, both in terms of when it has been open and in what could be seen when you got there. The building has had a very chequered life having been sacked by the Franks, been used as a barracks and an asylum and enduring numerous earthquakes. The latest of these in 1999 (9 years after inscription) led to a major restoration project which resulted in the monastery becoming a building site. Most photos on the Web show it completely encased in scaffolding. In recent years it has only been open for limited hours on Tuesdays and Fridays. WHS travellers should know, however, that the situation has improved and that it might be worth their while including a visit to it in any future visit to Athens.

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Liftah (Mey Naftoah) – Traditional mountain village (T) Tony0001

Liftah is and abandonned small town in a valley. You find there some houses left in 1948, in the state as they were then, but in the state you expect after 70 years. Besides houses there is a spring and a small pond. It is surroundes with a few big motorways. Parking space is limited near the site. I went down into the valley, did a small walk till the end of the town and went back up the steep hill. Never can believe this becomes world heritage one day...

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Ein Karem, a village and its cultural landscape (T) Tony0001

Today I visited the town of Ein Karem. It is only a short ride from Jerusalem. Ein Karem has many religious buildings, but none seems old or very special. The environment is nice to walk. 

I think the outstanding universal value has to be that John The Baptist has been born here. It was 8 in the morning when I was there, and the first buses with tourists allready arrived. My host in the hotel told this is a good place to find a restaurant on a saturday (Sabbath). 

There is not a lot of parking space there. I found a small (free) car park and some spaces along the road. 

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Fraser Island Clyde

Fraser Island by Clyde

I visited this WHS in December 2017 and I already before going I knew it would have a special place in my memories as it was my 400th visited WHS.

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Australian Fossil Mammal Sites Frederik Dawson

Australian Fossil Mammal Sites by Frederik Dawson

Similar to most of reviewers, I only visited Naracoorte component of this World Heritage Site as part of my Great Ocean Road trip from Melbourne to Adelaide. I chose Penola, a lovely small town with fine food and nice red wine of the well-known vineyards of Coonawara as my base to visit this fossil caves national park. Before the visit it is highly recommended to check the website of the national park for tour schedule and buy the limited ticket, I saw many tourists came without this preparation and found no tour available. I arrived the tourist center 1 hour before my booked tour to register. The biggest attraction on the ground level is the big cute statue of Diprotodon, an ancestor of wombat and Koala bear.

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Historical Lisbon, Global City (T) Caspar Dechmann

Historical Lisbon, Global City (T) by Caspar Dechmann

This nomination certainly overlaps with the nomination of Pombaline Lisbon but includes additionally all the other areas of the older city center. When the text for Pombaline Lisbon seems already a bit enumerative and unfocused this is even more the case for his nomination. Lisbon certainly has a long history that starts from the Phoenicians and the Romans, but nothing is left of the first and very little of the second. The also nominated area on and around the Alfama hill is very nice and based on the old islamic city but of this seems only the layout left and there are much better preserved islamic quarters in world heritage cities like Granada and Cordoba, to name only some examples in Europe. The very important era of exploration is very prominently covered with the Monastery and the Tower in Belem.

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Colonia del Sacramento Jay T

Colonia del Sacramento by Jay T

The Historic Center of the City of Colonia del Sacramento in Uruguay is a perfectly adequate World Heritage Site, but, as has been intimated by other reviewers here, it would likely not fall in the top tier for many WHS travelers. Like others, I visited the town as a day trip by ferry from Buenos Aires in March 2016. The weather was warm, which made the stroll around the historic cobblestone streets of the historic quarter rather pleasant. I appreciated the tile maps of the city found throughout the historic quarter, and also enjoyed the overhead views of the city from atop the lighthouse. Scattered around the quarter were several old cars that had been turned into artwork, and antique lamps were hung from the sides of many of the buildings. Before returning to Buenos Aires, my friends and I enjoyed a relaxing late lunch at a cafe overlooking the Rio de la Plata and some of the old city walls on the south side of the historic quarter.

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Pombaline Lisbon (T) Caspar Dechmann

Pombaline Lisbon (T) by Caspar Dechmann

From the four tentativ sites within the city of Lisbon this seems to me the one with the best perspectives. It is a nice area to walk around though you have to suffer somebody begging or offering their business every five meters. There are nice long views and big squares of which the Rossio is probably the most enjoyable.

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Head Office and Garden of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation (T) Caspar Dechmann

Head Office and Garden of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation  (T) by Caspar Dechmann

To me as a musician Gulbenkian meant until recently a Portuguese Orchestra. For most visitors of Lisbon probably means one of the best museums in the capital. Behind both of them stands the same Gulbenkian Foundation and I think one needs to know a little bit about it to understand this application on the tentativ list. The museum was built in the end of the 1950s, “when the country was still dominated by a conservative dictatorship, closed to the world and resistant to the values of progress. The foundation thus emerged unexpectedly in Portugal as a symbol of and place to promote art, education and science”. From a national perspective importance of this foundation can hardly be overrated.

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