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Top 50 - Africa [2020]

 
 
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Author warwass
Partaker
#76 | Posted: 26 Mar 2020 09:21 | Edited by: warwass 
jonathanfr:
Zuma Rock (Nigeria)

If we are thinking about Zuma Rock for just being a monolith, why not to think of:
Sibebe Rock (Eswatini) as a mixed site, the second-largest monolith in the world and the largest exposed granite pluton, rising 350m above the valley of the Mbuluzi River;
Olumo Rock in Abeokuta (Nigeria) for its history as a fortress and contemporary use as a place of different rituals;
Brandberg Mountain (Namibia) (already on TL) for its wildlife, flora and rock paintings with the White Lady who in not a lady.

Author Solivagant
Partaker
#77 | Posted: 26 Mar 2020 09:49 | Edited by: Solivagant 
Assif:
Should Ileret be proposed as an extension?

Don't we have enough opportunities without getting involved in "extensions"?
In any case - I think that Ileret is already inscribed as part of Turkana Parks (It lies within the inscribed Sibiloi NP) Yes - I know that Turkana is only inscribed for Natural OUV but it is a mess as regards the distinction between Natural and Human Palaeontology!! I quote from UNESCO re the scope of Criterion viii
"The geology and fossil record represents major stages of earth history including records of life represented by hominid discoveries, presence of recent geological process represented by volcanic erosional and sedimentary land forms. This property's main geological features stem from the Pliocene and Holocene periods (4million to 10,000 years old). It has been very valuable in the reconstruction of the paleo-environment of the entire Lake Turkana Basin. The Kobi Fora deposits contain pre-human, mammalian, molluscan and other fossil remains and have contributed more to the understanding of human ancestry and paleo-environment than any other site in the world. "
As far as I can discover footprints were discovered since the original inscription

Author winterkjm
Partaker
#78 | Posted: 26 Mar 2020 09:52 
Assif:
Top Missing - Africa [2020] 30

Thanks for the update, a steadily growing list with some fantastic potential world heritage sites. I am glad Solivagant joined the discussion.

Author Solivagant
Partaker
#79 | Posted: 26 Mar 2020 10:00 | Edited by: Solivagant 
We are running into the problem of multiple sites of any particular type -
2 Stilt Villages
n Monoliths
n Ancient defensive walls

Ok - I accept that, if this was Europe rather than Africa, then either several similar sites would get inscription (Viticulture........?) or several would be linked together as a serial nomination (Beech Forests........?)
A problem is that very few of us will have been to very few of these sites so, for this exercise, we are reliant on what we can pick up from the Web as our sole means of determining which is the best or whether there is enough difference to justify having each separately or linking them together as part of a bigger whole (Plus of course any "specialist" knowledge or interest which some might be able to bring to the party)

Just putting them together as a "Serial site" seems to be "cop out" it really would be better if could decide which is the BEST - we are after all looking not for all the sites in Africa which COULD/SHOULD be nominated but those which would stand up with the best in the World from other continents. To achieve that we don't want to limit the list too much but perhaps we should avoid too many "near" duplicates and try to make a judgement as between them???

Author nfmungard
Partaker
#80 | Posted: 26 Mar 2020 10:56 
Central African Republic - Pygmy settlements (T, M)
http://whc.unesco.org/en/tentativelists/4012

Author nfmungard
Partaker
#81 | Posted: 26 Mar 2020 10:57 
Solivagant:
which is the BEST

I think everything that requires a serial site, would probably not count as "the best". Personally, I enjoy looking also at the backog item, but I think it's clear that the big ticket items are not some traditional villages etc.

Author Solivagant
Partaker
#82 | Posted: 26 Mar 2020 11:10 | Edited by: Solivagant 
I have been looking a bit more at the Domes de Fabedougou.
They are certainly scenic, unusual and interesting. If one was nearby one would definitely want to see them.
The question is whether they have OUV.
IUCN is notorious for ONLY wanting to inscribe sites on Geological criteria if the Geology is particularly important, "unique" etc.
e.g Israel's Makhteshim "Craters" were failed for not being really unique ("A specialized example of an "Anticlinal erosion summit valley" which are apparently fairly common!)
France had to use all its persistence and political clout to get the Chaine des Puys inscribed and is trying to do the same with the Aples Maritimes. Both were/are regarded by IUCN as not being that "special". Not many countries can do this and we know it is totally unfair to those that can't!

I have looked for any Geological academic papers on the site - without success. Of course Developing countries lose out on that matter as well. If the Geology isn't important for minerals/oil etc then it is less likely to be studied.
I did find this blog from someone who is clearly "in" to Geology and made a special visit - https://earthly-musings.blogspot.com/2014/01/the-domes-of-fabedougou.html
He confirms what the UNESCO T List entry states "They are composed of Mesoproterzoic sandstone that is incredibly un-metamorphosed. For being 1,800 million years old (and coincidentally the same age as the much tortured Vishnu Schist in Grand Canyon) these rocks are surprisingly young looking."
I then looked up Purnululu which includes the Bungle Bungle range which, at first sight looks very similar to Fabedougou - it is also eroded sandstone domes but much, much "younger" - "The distinctive beehive-shaped towers are made up of sandstones and conglomerates (rocks composed mainly of pebbles and boulders and cemented together by finer material).These sedimentary formations were deposited into the Red Basin 375 to 350 million years ago, when active faults were altering the landscape. The combined effects of wind from the Tanami Desert and rainfall over millions of years shaped the domes.".
The UNESCO justification for inscription of Punululu includes this statement - "It includes the Bungle Bungle Range, a spectacularly incised landscape of sculptured rocks which contains superlative examples of beehive-shaped karst sandstone rising 250 metres above the surrounding semi-arid savannah grasslands. Unique depositional processes and weathering have given these towers their spectacular black and orange banded appearance, formed by biological processes of cyanobacteria (single cell photosynthetic organisms) which serve to stabilise and protect the ancient sandstone formations. These outstanding examples of cone karst that have eroded over a period of 20 million years are of great beauty and exceptional geological interest."
So - how does Fabedougou compare? PurnuluIu got both Crit vii and viii but in many respects it seems pretty comparable with Fabedougou. I guess that, at the end of the day, it depends on who tells the story and how!!!!! As a non expert it would seem to me that Fabedougou "stands up" pretty well?

Author nfmungard
Partaker
#83 | Posted: 26 Mar 2020 11:29 
Solivagant:
UCN is notorious for ONLY wanting to inscribe sites on Geological criteria if the Geology is particularly important, "unique" etc.

I dont think ICOMOS or IUCN matters much anymore. If Chaine de Puys gets inscribed. Or Prosecco, I think we are fine giving non-expert opinions. Those will be better than of the WHC. Sad.

Author jonathanfr
Partaker
#84 | Posted: 26 Mar 2020 12:59 
Industrial sites are underrepresented in Africa. "Ancient Ferrous Metallurgy Sites of Burkina Faso" was listed last year. To increase the number of industrial sites in Africa, South Africa could register the Big Hole at Kimberley.

Author Solivagant
Partaker
#85 | Posted: 26 Mar 2020 13:23 | Edited by: Solivagant 
jonathanfr:
could register the Big Hole at Kimberley.

It is a bit more than a "hole" -
"Visitors can walk the eerily empty streets of the company town and step into the modest home where the De Beers family lived".

And quite a hole!! See
https://www.tripsavvy.com/kimberley-diamond-mine-4056744
What do others think? Comparable with Fray Bentos, Sewell etc??
Certainly - but "Top 50 missing"???

Author Jurre
Partaker
#86 | Posted: 26 Mar 2020 15:25 | Edited by: Jurre 
If we want the "big ticket items", as mentioned above, then this Tentative site comes to mind:

Full name of site: Lake Chad Cultural Landscape
Country: Cameroon, Chad, Niger, Nigeria
TWHS?: Yes - http://whc.unesco.org/en/tentativelists/6360/ - http://whc.unesco.org/en/tentativelists/6361/ - http://whc.unesco.org/en/tentativelists/6368/ - http://whc.unesco.org/en/tentativelists/6359/
Short description of site: (From the Unesco site) The Lake Chad is a vast area of fresh water located in the middle of sand dunes which covers territories in 4 countries: Nigeria, Cameroon, Niger and Chad. Paleography informs us that the Lake Chad has been constantly evolving with respect to the environmental conditions. Its geology has undergone variations which are the object of numerous controversies. The current area is around 17,000 km2 (measured during its high point at the end of the rainy season). It is an endorheic lake fed mainly by the Logone Chari and Komadougou watercourses.
This ecosystem contains a great variety of wet zones which include open water, polders, temporary or permanent ponds, some of them being rich in natron. Around the lake, sand deserts and water meet in a complex network of meanders which are sometimes cultivated. Receding waters in dry season expose wide floodplains on the banks of the lake. They shelter water plants such as papyrus and spirulina but also numerous animal species such as the migratory birds, which use these plains as resting areas.
Criteria: Mixed

Author winterkjm
Partaker
#87 | Posted: 26 Mar 2020 19:13 | Edited by: winterkjm 
Jurre:
Full name of site: Lake Chad Cultural Landscape
Country: Cameroon, Chad, Niger, Nigeria

According to reports this nomination may have already been submitted to UNESCO in time for the 2021 WHC. I would 100% support this nomination of a vitally important ecosystem that is under threat, though based on recent reports improving, which should also sway the wolrd heritage committee (if not IUCN).

Author winterkjm
Partaker
#88 | Posted: 26 Mar 2020 19:56 | Edited by: winterkjm 
I just made my first attempt to narrow down the African proposals so far. Wow, very tough. At this point, I was only able to "thin" about a dozen of the more than 30 supported proposals. Besides the "world class" or stunning factor, I will have to look more into "filling the gap" criteria to narrow down my own selections.

Author nfmungard
Partaker
#89 | Posted: 26 Mar 2020 21:42 | Edited by: nfmungard 
winterkjm
* Your list has no sites in large countries e.g. Kongo (either country), Gabun, Central African Republic,
* Somalia, Mauretania and West Sahara have zero sites currently. We must be able to identify more than one for Somlia.
* With very short current lists Nigeria, Cameroon, Niger deserve more love.
* West Africa falls very short with only Sierra Leone listed. There must be sth in Cote d'Ivoire, Ghana, Benin, Togo, Liberia, ... we missed.

For both Kongo(s) I proposed sites previously. I also don't know why the Kalahari one is not included.

Author nfmungard
Partaker
#90 | Posted: 26 Mar 2020 22:02 | Edited by: nfmungard 
Mauritania
Koumbi Saleh - Ancient Capital of Ghana Empire.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Koumbi_Saleh

Liberia
American Colonization Society Settlements
Providence Island https://www.worldheritagesite.org/tentative/id/6247
Harper https://www.lonelyplanet.com/liberia/harper

Sapo National Park => " second-largest area of primary tropical rainforest in West Africa", "the highest mammal species diversity of any region in the world" => Extend Cote d'Ivoire NP
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sapo_National_Park

Gabon
Ideas from https://wikitravel.org/en/Gabon

Loango_National_Park => Surfing Hippos!
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Loango_National_Park: "Loango National Park is the true jewel of Africa's western coast. The naturalist Mike Fay called Loango 'Africa's Last Eden' and this is where Michael "Nick" Nichols from National Geographic took his well-known pictures of surfing hippos. Both men call Loango the 'Land of surfing hippos'. [...] After South Africa, the world's largest concentration and variety of whales and dolphins can be found right off the Loango coast."

Mayumba National Park — "sandy peninsula home to the world's largest population of nesting leatherback turtles."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mayumba_National_Park: "the most important leatherback turtle nesting beaches on Earth"

Ivindo National Park
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ivindo_National_Park: "ost famous for the spectacular Kongou and Mingouli waterfalls of the Ivindo River, known as the "wonders of Ivindo",[2] the park also includes the Ipassa Makokou Biosphere Reserve and Langoué Baï, one of the 5 most important forest clearings in Central Africa."

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 Top 50 - Africa [2020]

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