For decades, the list of World Heritage Sites has been filled with some of the most culturally, historically, and naturally significant places on the planet. Created and maintained by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), the list contains such amazing places as the Great Pyramids of Giza, the Serengeti, and Mach Picchu. Each year, the World Heritage council oversees the selection of new places to include on its list, which are often favorites amongst travelers looking to experience the true marvels of our planet. This year, that group has named 29 new places to the list and thankfully for us, National Geographic has the rundown of the new additions.
As you can imagine, the 29 new entires vary greatly in size, scope, and location. They are all highly significant to us as humans however, which plays a large part in why they are named to the list. Amongst the new entires that made the cut this year are Began, Myanmar, which is home to dozens upon dozens of Buddhist temples and the historic center of Sheki in Azerbaijan, which played a major role in the silk trade in the 1700s. The volcanic Vatnajökull National Park in Iceland has earned its way on to the list due to its spectacular landscapes, as has a prehistoric mine in Poland, which played a central role in early toolmaking during the Bronze Age.
I won’t spoil the rest of the list, as there are far too many interesting and unique places for you to discover in the Nat Geo article. Each of the new 2019 World Heritage Sites is given its own entry on a slide show, which not only provides context for the place, but also includes a photo that helps illustrate why it is a location of significant value. This being National Geographic, it goes without say that those images are spectacular.
I’ve been fortunate enough to visit numerous World Heritage Sites during my travels, but the folks at UNESCO keep adding some amazing new places that just makes my bucket list grow that much longer. There are plenty of places amongst these 29 new ones that I’d love to see. I guess I’ll just have to keep traveling until I’ve had a chance to visit them all.