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WHS Get-together 2016

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Author elsslots
#1 | Posted: 19 Jan 2016 07:40 | Edited by: elsslots 
Let me start this new topic, as there have been already posts from several people.

Doing my yearly travel planning. Are we going to do a meet up this year? If so, when and where?St. Kilda would be great.

I think a get-together in 2016 would be great, especially for those who couldn't make the last one. If there's interest, should we start a new topic?

St Kilda would be great or the Orkneys :) surely much more difficult than van nelle!

One of the lessons learned from last year is that we should decide on a date earlier.
Open to any suggestions for a location. I do like the St. Kilda idea (we can spend 2x4 hours on the boat talking about WHS, and visit a special one).
I had been thinking of Orheiul Vechi (Moldavia), but its dossier was deemed incomplete. Maybe one of the other new WHS for 2016?

Author meltwaterfalls
#2 | Posted: 19 Jan 2016 08:33 | Edited by: meltwaterfalls 
I've been looking into Orkney for a visit next month, it is a surprisingly expensive place to get to. From London I am getting better rates for return flights to Tehran than I am for Kirkwall. Ground transport isn't any cheaper, unless I fancy a day on coaches (very little could make me endure that).

Perhaps if there is interest then St Kilda could be a bit of a goer, though again it is a rather pricey undertaking, c£175-250pp (€230-326/US$250-355) just for the boat trip, and there would be a minimum of two nights accommodation once we get out to the Western Isles, which aren't the most accessible place to start with.

I guess it depends on whether we would want a big easy get together (I guess somewhere near a largish European city), or a select/ expensive "lets finally tick of that awkward and impressive site" kind of undertaking.

I don't have my plans fully fleshed out for the year yet, but the cheaper easier option would be my preference (though that doesn't mean I would rule out the other option entirely)

Author nfmungard
#3 | Posted: 19 Jan 2016 08:53 
Last year, most of us were travelling before and after the meeting anyhow, so it's not really a question of flying in in the morning and heading out at night. I do agree, though, that getting there and away should not be impossible (not in the extremely difficult to visit category of sites). Or if it's challenging that there are more sites to explore in the proximity.

Also, we should leverage being a group and getting some special experience that would be hard to have individually. Maybe someone knows someone in Brussels? Getting inside the Stoclet House would be awesome ;)

General requirements:
* Should be in Europe.
* Should not be site everyone has seen already.
* Should be half a day's travel from major airport offering cheap flights.

I like Scotland. Cheap flights to Edinburgh where we could meet up. And whoever would want to see St Kilda could join and travel on.

Author meltwaterfalls
#4 | Posted: 19 Jan 2016 09:31 | Edited by: meltwaterfalls 
Cheap flights to Edinburgh where we could meet up. And whoever would want to see St Kilda could join and travel on.

Perhaps that may be a way to go about it.
But it is still a long trip out to the Western Isles, 5.5 hours to Uig by car, closer to 11 hours by public transport, If you were looking at the shortest sea crossing to St Kilda that is 8-10 hours by car, 14-15 by Public Transport. In reality it would be a three/ four day round trip from Edinburgh to St Kilda depending on weather a fair chunk of it sat on transport.
That isn't to pooh-pooh the idea, just to let people know what they are in for.

(NB maybe it is just me but distances seem much further in my own country, I probably wouldn't balk at an 8 hour drive in other places it just seems rather long 'at home')

Maybe someone knows someone in Brussels? Getting inside the Stoclet House would be awesome ;)

It is very close to the last one, and Stoclet House would only be open if one of us had some compromising pictures of a member of the Stoclet family, I'm sure one of us must have them ;) But as an alternative we may be able to get access to one of the Horta Houses perhaps Hotel Solvay?

Though to be honest I would probably be keener on somewhere else in continental Europe, I like the idea of Moldova even if it isn't looking good for inscription, there is always a Struve measuring post to head to!

Author elsslots
#5 | Posted: 19 Jan 2016 09:46 
But it is still a long trip out to the Western Isles, 5.5 hours to Uig by car, closer to 11 hours by public transport

You could fly into Inverness, from there it's less than 3 hours to Uig

Author meltwaterfalls
#6 | Posted: 19 Jan 2016 09:59 
Yep true about Inverness (also a handy starting point for Orkney). It was more just fleshing out the possibility of meeting in Edinburgh then travelling onwards.

If it was just St Kilda that was of interes,t Stornaway would be the handiest airport, though more expensive and needing a change of flight for most people.

Author Solivagant
#7 | Posted: 19 Jan 2016 10:25 | Edited by: Solivagant 
Further to above points re St Kilda - the crossing weather can be very uncertain -even in the summer -and boat trips only go every other day in order to give a chance of a "reschedule" if the weather is not good enough. Thus a spare day would need to be "built in" to anyone's plans whenever they might plan the trip. You wouldn't want to go all that way and then have to leave before the boat departed!!!

Author nfmungard
#8 | Posted: 19 Jan 2016 10:35 | Edited by: nfmungard 
St Kilda was just an idea. ;) What are hard to visit ones in Europe? ...

Some additional ideas:
* Go to one of these beloved vineyards.
* Sicily (7 WHS on one island).
* Malta (3 WHS)
* Milan (Leonardo not that easy to visit -> group could be nice way of making it happen).

Going German:
* Berlin (3 WHS plus AEG Turbinenhalle plus Bernau for those into modern architecture) -> Maybe get a tour of modernist housing estates? Also, we could ask for a Reichstags Tour which in a group will be nicer. Can even ask my MP.
* Hamburg. Happy to show you my home town. Get tour of Speicherstadt and Chilehaus plus Jewish Cemetery and Harbour cruise.
* Aachen. My alma mater. Get tour of Cathedral. Very nice place.

Author Solivagant
#9 | Posted: 19 Jan 2016 10:59 
What are hard to visit ones in Europe? ...

Yes we really need a site which is "easy/cheap to reach" but "hard to get inside" unless one has "pull" of some sort which can be provided for us as we are such "important people"!!!

I also feel that, if a get together IS to be organised, then we need a bit more time to "interact" with each other - I enjoyed meeting all those who I did meet last time but there were many others who I would have liked to talk to but didn't have time or didn't happen to be sitting near at lunch!

Author Khuft
#10 | Posted: 19 Jan 2016 13:22 | Edited by: Khuft 
I'm sorry I missed last year's get-together, given everything I read here, and would love to join this year. I would have a strong preference if it could take place over a weekend - it's not a must, but would simplify planning for me. A major airport in the vicinity would also help :-) But anyway, don't mind me,
A few additional thoughts could be:
- travelling to a major European city, but visit a little-known / difficult to get into place (Horta-style, but maybe there are also options in the Romes, Palermos and Budapests of this world)
- travelling to a place where one of us can serve as guide - did that with a few work colleagues a few years back, and that was pretty much fun, I must say. (oh, just noticed that is what nfumgaard proposes for Hamburg)

Author clyde
#11 | Posted: 19 Jan 2016 15:08 
Cyprus would be another good island to visit (3 whs).

Or else what about Stockholm (several sites nearby) or Copenhagen (several sites nearby including the parforce landscape) ?

Or Barumini in Sardegna? Plenty of airports with low cost flights ...

I'd support the idea of somewhere accessible with an airport nearby and 'doable' in a weekend trip.

Author meltwaterfalls
#12 | Posted: 19 Jan 2016 16:25 
Likewise I'm happy to offer up a locals tour of London. I may well be able to use some contacts to get some sort of behind the scenes access at Kew or Greenwich. Or like nfmungard tap up my MP for a tour of Westminster.
The plus is the easy access, the downside would be most of us have seen all those sites already and London can be a more expensive destination.

I was trying to think of some of the sites that are tougher to get into:
Thracian tombs, Cave art sites (Vezere, Chauvet, Altamira), Brussels houses. erm Pec?
Maybe some sort of Port house/ vineyard/ river trip combo for Porto and the Alto Douro?

Author warwass
#13 | Posted: 19 Jan 2016 16:38 | Edited by: warwass 
And what about a meeting in a site(s) inscribed in 2015? Champagne and Burgundy in France or Hamburg and Christiansfeld?
Or maybe in a place that will be surely inscribed in 2016? Antequera in Spain and Gibraltar?
And we should fix the date - the sooner we decide, the better for all of us. I would suggest mid-August...

Author Durian
#14 | Posted: 19 Jan 2016 20:36 | Edited by: Durian 
If interest to come to SE Asia, I can arrange visit to Singapore Botanic Garden or Malaysia Georgetown + Lenggong or Ban Chiang AS + Phuphrabat HP + Phimai in Thailand :)

Author Colvin
#15 | Posted: 19 Jan 2016 23:24 
Some thoughts on a meeting this year:

I agree Europe makes the most sense for an easily accessible WHS get-together for a majority of the members of the forum for 2016. That doesn't mean there can't be other regional get-togethers this year (in southeast Asia or North America, for instance), but if you're looking at doing a get-together outside of Europe, it may take more than a year's notice for folks to prepare (say Frank Lloyd Wright in 2017, for instance, should the nomination go through this year).

As far as the choice of a location, I agree we might want to look for a site that hasn't been visited by a majority of members, which as many of you have already mentioned could be either:
a. A hard to reach site (whether geographically or because of limited tour options), or
b. A recently inscribed site (either 2015 or some site that will most likely be inscribed in 2016).

I also like the idea of choosing a location with other WHS located nearby, in case anybody who attends would like to visit more while they are in the area. If any forum members can play tour guide for their city, that would also be a great option. I have lots of gaps in Europe (though not so much in Scotland, unfortunately, since I just visited), so I'd be amenable to most sites provided the timing works out right.

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