So it’s Summer now and you’re probably indecisive about where to travel and spend your vacation. Well, guess what? After checking out those must-visit heritage sites that you haven’t heard of, you won’t be confused anymore but rather enthusiastic to visit at least one of the following mentioned sites.
- Petra in Jordan: Established in 1985, Petra is half-built, half-carved into the rock, and is surrounded by mountains riddled with passages and gorges. It is one of the world’s most famous archaeological sites, where ancient Eastern traditions blend with Hellenistic architecture.
- Old City of Jerusalem in Palestine: Established in 1981, the Dome of the Rock stands out: it is decorated with beautiful geometric and floral motifs. It is recognized by all three religions as the site of Abraham’s sacrifice.
- Aflaj Irrigation Systems in Oman: Established in 2006, Aflaj systems operate by using gravity, in a way that water is channeled from underground sources or springs to support agriculture and domestic use. Numerous watchtowers built to defend the water systems form part of the site reflecting the historic dependence of communities on the Aflaj system.
- Nubian Monuments from Abu Simbel to Philae in Egypt: Established in 1979, Abu Simbel site is an outstanding archaeological area that contains magnificent monuments as the Temples of Ramses II at Abu Simbel and the Sanctuary of Isis at Philae.
- Al Qal’a of Beni Hammad in Algeria: Also known as Beni Hammad Fort, now in ruins, in the 11th century, it served as the first capital of the Hammadid dynasty. It is located at an elevation of 1,418 meters and receives abundant water from the surrounding mountains. The town includes a 7 km-long line of walls. Inside the walls are four residential complexes, and the largest mosque built in Algeria after that of Mansurah.
- Tyre in Lebanon: It juts out from the coast of the Mediterranean and is located about 80 south of Beirut. The name of the city means “rock” after the rocky formation on which the town was originally built. It is an ancient Phoenician city and the legendary birthplace of Europa and Elissa.
- Al Zubarah in Qatar: Covering an area of circa 400 hectares (60 hectares inside the outer town wall), Zubarah is Qatar’s most substantial archaeological site. The site comprises the fortified town with a later inner and an earlier outer wall, a harbour, a sea canal, and two screening walls.
- El Djem in Tunisia: It is a town Tunisia, population 48,611. It is home to some of the most impressive Roman remains in Africa, like the worldwide famous “Roman amphitheater of Thysdrus”.
- Tadrart Acacus in Libya: Established in 1985, the area is known for its rock-art because of the importance of these paintings and carvings. The paintings date from 12,000 B.C.E. to 100 C.E. and reflect cultural and natural changes in the area. There are paintings and carvings of animals such as giraffes, elephants, ostriches and camels, but also of men and horses. Men are depicted in various daily life situations, for example while making music and dancing.
- Banc d’Arguin National Park in Mauritania: It is a major breeding site for migratory birds, such as flamingos. Much of the breeding is on sand banks including several islands. The surrounding waters are some of the richest fishing waters in western Africa and serve as nesting grounds for the entire western region.
Do you know of any other heritage sites that people should visit? Share them in the comments below.