There are 1007 incredible sites on the UNESCO World Heritage List
Many sites are inaccessible due to conflict while other are simply hard to reach
The Minaret of Jam in Afghanistan and the ancient city of Aleppo in Syria risk being lost forever
You can still see the remains of the Chimu Kingdom in Peru – if you’re quick
Even the more well-travelled among us would struggle to scratch the surface of Unesco’s World Heritage List.
Jaw-dropping scenery, ancient monuments and incredible wildlife are just a few of the 1007 sites earmarked for preservation by the organisation.
But while well-known destinations such as Machu Picchu and the Acropolis in Athens may feature prominently on many intrepid explorers’ ‘to do’ list, there are a number of stunning sites that the majority of us will simply never get to see.
Feeding the nation: The world heritage listed rice fields of Pulagan stretch over 110 hectares producing more than 620 tons of rice annually.
Just a few kilometers north of Ubud is an off-the-beaten-track UNESCO-recognized rice field site that offers visitors an almost solo experience.
Turn right at Tampak Siring’s traditional market and head out of the quaint town. About a kilometer away is the 110-hectare protected site of Subak Pulagan. Set against a backdrop of Mount Batur and Mount Agung ‘ and with fields surrounded by coconut palms Pulagan is a rural paradise.
The area received a UNESCO listing just three years ago, which has saved it from development, says the head of the local subak, or irrigation group, Sang Nyoman Astika.
‘Five years ago there was a lot of developers coming here wanting to buy up the land, but we cannot sell the land. This land is from our ancestors and must go down to our descendants. We are really proud to have the world heritage listing,’ says the 44 year old.
It is always refreshing to go to a national park and be one with nature. You will get to see a variety of wildlife and find yourself busy clicking pictures of them. It is a perfect vacation spot to head to with your family as the feeling of adventure lasts all the way through! The state of Assam has many national parks, making it a perfect getaway for the adventurer in you. Other than the many picturesque locales to roam around, these parks serve as the entertainment you need to jazz things up. Here is a look at some of the national parks in Assam.
Kaziranga National Park Kaziranga National Park is the pride of Assam.
A little more than five hours from neon-buzzed Tokyo lies a very different Japan, one of thatched-roof houses and black nights illuminated by lantern light. Pico Iyer travels to the country’s snowy western region to explore two villages untouched by modernity—and alive with their own quiet magic.
I might almost be staying in Hobbitland. The minute darkness descends and the paper windows under the thatched roofs all around me begin to glow, turning high walls into eerie faces, most of the day’s few visitors gone. Lanterns cast reflections on the rice paddy at the center of the 20-house village, and the sign warning of nearby bears grows indecipherable in the pitch black. Wandering between A-shaped houses with their steep 60-degree straw roofs—*gassho zukuri,*or “praying hands” in Japanese, though they also look like giant open books—I might be walking through a Christmas card of occasional lights and tree-trunk seats gathered around a mushroom-shaped low table.
JAM, Afghanistan — It is the place that launched a thousand postcards, back in the day when tourists still came in any numbers to Afghanistan: the Minaret of Jam.
Even then, few ever actually saw it, tucked into a gorge 12 hours of rough jeep track from anywhere, in a part of the country notorious for its brigandry, Ghor Province in the west-central highlands.
Now, that road passes through Taliban territory as well, and reaching it has become even harder. The track ends at Jam, and in spring and summer the river is too high to cross to the side where the minaret is.
Officials from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization were finally able to revisit the site on Nov. 18, for the first time since 2006.
In places it was hard to tell where jungle stopped and the incredibly beautiful cave began.
People often ask me why I go caving. It’s dark, tight, claustrophobic, cold and dangerous and you might get lost – why would anyone want to do this? And for fun?
There are a lot of misconceptions about caving, it isn’t really dangerous – well, it is if you don’t know what you’re doing and if you don’t risk assess; it is if you push beyond your risk assessments, if you compromise on your equipment or don’t plan and train for rescue, but generally it is a safe sport.
Contrary to popular assumption it really isn’t easy to get lost underground.