FROM the pyramids of Giza to the Australian Great Barrier Reef, the world’s most spectacular sites of both man-made and natural beauty have always piqued our curiosity and been the focus of many of our travel plans.
But these world heritage sites should not be taken for granted, as far too often they are under threat from outside forces, whether its climate change, mass tourism, or conflict.
In a bid to protect these unique destinations, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (Unesco) places those considered under the most serious threat on the List of World Heritage in Danger. These include some obvious ones, such as the site of Palmyra in Syria which was devastated by Islamic State, and some not so obvious ones, like the center of Vienna, Austria, currently under threat from the spread of high-rises and new development.
There are sadly a handful of precious sites highlighted in Asia-Pacific. Hopefully, the protection efforts will work, and these will be around for a long time yet.