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Unesco: which sites are entering the world heritage list?


The UN agency has just added 28 sites to the world heritage list, including the cities of Nice and Vichy in France. Other properties, threatened by overtourism or overdevelopment, narrowly escape inclusion on the list of endangered sites.

It is a moment particularly awaited by the candidate sites, a classification in the heritage of Unesco (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) being the guarantee of important tourist benefits. The 44th session of the World Heritage Committee, meeting in Fuzhou, China, examined from July 16 to 28 the 18 nominations submitted for 2021 as well as the 24 submitted for 2020 (the year in which the committee did not meet due to the epidemic of Covid-19).

Following this session, 28 new sites join Unesco's world heritage: 24 as cultural properties and 4 as natural properties.

France now has 48 classified sites thanks to the registration of three new properties: the Cordouan lighthouse (Gironde) and the towns of Vichy and Nice.

The state of conservation of some 1121 sites already inscribed on the World Heritage List was also examined;

the opportunity to issue warnings when goods are distorted by overtourism or global warming.

Exceptional, one of the sites was downgraded, a rare decision that has only had two precedents since the list was created in 1972.

Read also: Nature: these French sites classified by Unesco

New listed cultural sites



After being rejected during the 2019 session,

Nissa la bella

this time enters the Unesco World Heritage.


Winter resort town of the Riviera

", Nice became from the middle of the 18th century the winter residence of aristocratic families from all over the world, especially from Russia and the United Kingdom.


Various cultural influences [which have] shaped the town planning and eclectic architectural styles

" of the city.

Nice has also embarked on the race to be the European Capital of Culture in 2028.

Read the file: Nice: the


travel guide

Cordouan lighthouse

Located at the mouth of the Gironde estuary, the Cordouan lighthouse, the oldest in France, is now part of Unesco's world heritage.

JEREMY LEMPIN / Le Figaro Magazine

Off Royan (Charente-Maritime) and Verdon-sur-Mer (Gironde) stands the oldest lighthouse in France and the only one to be permanently inhabited.

At 67.5 meters high, built between 1584 and 1611 at the mouth of the Gironde estuary, the Cordouan lighthouse is the second lighthouse to receive this distinction after that of La Coruña (Spain).

Read also: In the spray of Cordouan, with the last lighthouse keepers


European water towns (Germany, Austria, Belgium, France, Italy and the Czech Republic)

Eleven European water towns are listed as World Heritage by Unesco, including Vichy, in Auvergne.

Christian Parisey, Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Region, General inventory of cultural heritage, 2017 - ADAGP

The transnational site of the major spa towns in Europe includes 11 cities in Germany (Bad Ems, Baden-Baden, Bad Kissingen), Austria (Baden bei Wien), Belgium (Spa), France (Vichy), Italy (Montecatini Terme), the United Kingdom (Bath) and the Czech Republic (Franzensbad, Karlovy Vary and Marienbad).

What do they have in common?

They have developed around natural mineral water sources and have contributed, among other things, to the development of thermal tourism.

The Mathildenhöhe in Darmstadt (Germany)

The highest point in the city of Darmstadt, in the German state of Hesse, brings together buildings that are all more different than each other.

A testament to the early days of modern architecture, town planning and landscaping

” that caught the committee's attention.

Russian Chapel, Lys Basin, Matrimonial Tower ... The 23 constructions are the work of the Artists' Colony formed in 1899 by the Grand Duke of Hesse, Ernst Ludwig.

Read the file: Germany: the


travel guide

Charitable colonies (Belgium, Netherlands)

The Beneficial Colonies (Belgium, Netherlands).

Here the colony of Frederiksoord in the Netherlands.


The Beneficial Colonies, located straddling the Netherlands and Flemish Belgium, bear witness to an experiment in social reform carried out in the 19th century.

Of the seven colonies, four join Unesco's heritage: Frederiksoord, Wilhelminaoord and Veenhuizen in the Netherlands, and Wortel in Belgium.

They were founded in 1818 with the aim of reducing urban poverty after the Napoleonic wars.

The Société de Bienfaisance acquired unoccupied territories to convert them into agricultural land and thus allow the most disadvantaged to work and to have access to education.

Borders of the Roman Empire - the Limes of Lower Germania (Germany, Netherlands)

This property, which extends on the left bank of the Rhine over 400 km, "

includes sites and military and civil infrastructure which materialized the border of Lower Germania from the 1st to the 5th century AD,

" recalls Unesco. .

SchUM sites in Speyer, Worms and Mainz (Germany)

Located in the Upper Rhine Valley, this site comprises four components: the Synagogue and the Court of Justice of the Jewish Community in Speyer, as well as the ancient Jewish cemeteries of Worms and Mainz.

Built in the 12th century, the "

buildings that make up the property served as prototypes for Jewish communities and subsequent religious buildings as well as for cemeteries in Europe

", describes Unesco.

14th century fresco cycles in Padua (Italy)

In Padua, eight sets of religious buildings are listed by Unesco.

Here the Scrovegni Chapel.

Comune di Padova Settore Cultura, Turismo, Musei e Biblioteche

The site is made up of eight groups of religious and secular buildings located in Padua, Veneto.

Although having been painted over a long period (from 1302 to 1397) and by different artists, the listed fresco cycles "

present a unity of style and content

" and mark a "

revolution in the history of mural painting.

», Remarks Unesco.

Read also: Veneto: from Verona to Treviso, our travel guide

Paseo del Prado avenue and Buen Retiro Palace in Madrid (Spain)

A model of town planning dating back to the period of enlightened absolutism in the 18th century, Paseo del Prado Avenue in the Spanish capital is distinguished by its large fountains and prestigious buildings which illustrate "

the aspiration for a utopian society during the height of the Spanish Empire


This is where the Prado Museum is located, one of the most visited in Madrid.

Also listed, the garden of Buen Retiro includes various styles of gardens from the 19th century to the present day.

Read the file: Madrid: the


travel guide

Mining landscape of Roșia Montană (Romania)

Stretching for seven kilometers in the Apuseni Mountains, in western Romania, these gold mines dating from the second and third centuries AD represent the "

largest, largest and most important

Roman mining complex.

variety known to the world

”, according to Unesco.

This property is also placed on the list of endangered sites due to an extraction project being considered by a Canadian company.


As-Salt, place of tolerance and urban hospitality (Jordan)

The development of the city of As-Salt illustrates tolerance between Muslims and Christians, according to Unesco.

TURATH: Architecture and Urban Design Consultants

At the end of the Ottoman rule, between 1860 and 1920, the arrival of merchants who made their fortunes in commerce, banking and agriculture contributed to the prosperity of the city of As-Salt, in present-day Jordan. .


The non-segregated development of the city testifies to the tolerance between Muslims and Christians, who have developed traditions of hospitality to which the


(guesthouses) and a social protection system,

Takaful Ijtimai" testify "", recalls the Unesco.

Le tell d'Arslantepe (Turkey)

The remains found around the tell (artificial hill) of Arslantepe, a few kilometers from the town of Malatya, bear witness to the occupation of the site from the 6th millennium BC until the end of the Roman period.

This site illustrates the complex processes that led to the emergence of state society in the Near East and sophisticated administration before the appearance of writing.


Read also: Five reasons to return to Turkey this summer

The Trans-Iranian Railway (Iran)

The Trans-Iranian Railway was built between 1927 and 1938. Hossein Javadi

It connects the Caspian Sea to the Persian Gulf over 1394 km crossing a multitude of landscapes (mountains, forests, plains ...) and four different climatic zones.

Built between 1927 and 1938 by order of the Emperor of Persia, Reza Shah, the Trans-Iranian railway is punctuated by hundreds of bridges and tunnels which are all technical feats for the time.

Read also: Traveling in Iran: what to know before leaving?

Hawraman / Uramanat Cultural Landscape (Iran)

The property, located in the heart of the Zagros Mountains on the western border of Iran, testifies to the traditional culture of the Hawrami people, a Kurdish agro-pastoral tribe living in this region since 3000 BC.

The twelve listed villages illustrate the adaptation of this people to the scarcity of fertile land in this mountainous environment over the millennia.

Himā cultural area (Saudi Arabia)

Cultural rock arts of Ḥimā Najrān.


Located in southwestern Saudi Arabia, this site includes a collection of rock art representations with themes of hunting, flora, fauna and ways of life.

The inscriptions were left over the millennia and until the 20th century by travelers and soldiers who stopped there.

Read also: Should you go on vacation to Saudi Arabia?

Sudanese-style mosques in northern Ivory Coast (Ivory Coast)

The eight small mosques located in Tengréla, Kouto, Sorobango, Samatiguila, M'Bengué, Kong and Kaouara are characterized by an earthen construction, projecting frames, vertical buttresses crowned with pottery or ostrich eggs, and by slender minarets

”, describes Unesco.

Built around the 16th century, they are the best preserved among the twenty that still exist in Côte d'Ivoire.

The archaeoastronomical ensemble of Chanquillo (Peru)

If the significance of the ruins has long been a mystery, the observatory thesis is widely favored.


The archaeological site of Chanquillo, located on the north-central coast of Peru, in the Casma Valley, is the witness of a sophisticated solar cult.

The ruins, dating from around 400 BC, indicate that the place was also used as an astronomical observatory.

The thirteen stone towers are aligned at regular intervals so as to indicate, depending on the position of the sun, the months, solstices and equinoxes over the entire year.

Read also: Machu Picchu: what you need to know to prepare for the ascent of the Inca city

The church of Atlántida (Uruguay)

Work of engineer Eladio Dieste, the church of Atlántida, 45 km from Montevideo, “

represents an innovative use of exposed and reinforced brick


Inaugurated in 1960, this rectangular church is inspired by early Christian and medieval Italian religious architecture.

The Roberto Burle Marx site (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)

The Brazilian Roberto Burle Marx (1909-1994), who revolutionized landscaping with his tropical gardens, sees his home in Rio de Janeiro classified by Unesco.

Exuberant palms, bromeliads, araceae with giant leaves and bright colors: the gardens of his property have more than 3,500 tropical and subtropical species living in harmony with the native vegetation of the region.

Read the file: Rio de Janeiro: the


travel guide

Settlement and artificial mummification of the chinchorro culture in the region of Arica and Parinacota (Chile)

The Chinchorro people in northern Chile are behind the oldest artificial mummies discovered to date.

Carlos CHOW / Centro Gestion Chinchorro / AFP

It was in northern Chile, at the gateway to the Atacama Desert, that the first artificial mummies in the world were discovered at the start of the 20th century.

Dated more than 5000 BC, they belong to the Chinchorro people, who developed a mummification technique consisting of removing the organs, viscera and tissues of the deceased and reconstituting them using sticks and animal hair.

Read also: Five reasons to explore Chile this year

Jomon prehistoric sites (Japan)

In the south of the island of Hokkaido, this set of 17 archaeological sites “

testifies to the emergence, development and adaptability to environmental changes of a society of sedentary hunters, fishermen and gatherers which developed from from 13,000 BC.


”over a period of 10,000 years.

The city of Quanzhou (China)

Also known as Zayton in Arabic and Western texts, Quanzhou, a coastal city in the eastern province of Fujian, was an important maritime center in Asia during the Song and Yuan periods (10th-14th centuries CE).

This site is the 56th in China to be listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Read also: Travel to China: in a restaurant or in the subway, these little misconduct to avoid

The temple of Kakatiya Rudreshwara (India)

Rudreshwara temple (Ramappa), 200 km from Hyderabad.


This temple, also called Ramappa, is located in the village of Palampet, 200 km northeast of Hyderabad.

Decorated beams, light bricks, sculpted granite pillars ... Its construction, which began in 1213 under the Kakatiya dynasty (1123-1323), would have lasted nearly 40 years.

The Harappan city of Dholavira (India)

Between 3000 and 1500 BC, the fortified city of Dholavira was the southern capital of the Harappan civilization.


Its streets and houses of different sizes portray a hierarchical social order

" and its system of "

water management testifies to the ingenuity and struggle of its inhabitants to survive and prosper in the harsh conditions

" that prevail in the arid island of Khadir, in the state of Gujarat.

Read also: Do's and don'ts of tourists in India

New classified natural sites

Kaeng Krachan Forest Complex (Thailand)

Kaeng Krachan National Park, Thailand.

Komsun Sintara

Located along the Tenasserim Range, a set of granite and limestone mountains that extend to the Malay Peninsula, this site "

is known for the rich diversity of its birds

" and is home to many endangered species, like the Siamese crocodile or the raccoon cat.

Read also: Thailand: after Phuket, three other islands reopen to vaccinated international travelers

Rainforests and wetlands of Colchis (Georgia)

This site comprises seven elements in an 80 km long corridor that borders the Black Sea coast.

The very humid deciduous rainforests, which rise from sea level to an altitude of 2,500 meters, are home to a wide variety of flora and fauna, including plant species that have survived the glacial cycles of the Tertiary.

Read also: Strolls in Tbilisi, at the crossroads of the worlds

Amami-Oshima, Tokunoshima and Iriomote Islands, and the northern part of Okinawa Island (Japan)

The Urauchi River on Iriomote Island, Japan.

Renata barbarino

These almost uninhabited islands in southwestern Japan, covered with subtropical rainforests, "

present [s] a great biodiversity value with a very high proportion of endemic species, many of which are threatened at the global level

", explains Unesco. .

Read also: Japan: aboard the Shiki-shima, the four seasons train

Getbol, ​​Korean cotidal expanses (South Korea)

Located on the south-west and south coasts of South Korea, this site "

presents a complex combination of geological, oceanographic and climatological conditions

", as well as a very rich biodiversity with nearly 2150 species of flora and fauna recorded.

Sites on borrowed time, which risk being classified as "in danger"

Venice (Italy)

Large cruise ships will be banned in the historic center of Venice from August 1, 2021. MIGUEL MEDINA / AFP

Registered with Unesco since 1987, Venice narrowly avoids its classification among the sites in danger.

A decree-law validated by the Council of Ministers on July 13 and banning large cruise ships in the historic center from August 1 saves the Serenissima from this sanction.

These passenger ships, in addition to damaging the lagoon, contribute to the overcrowding of the City of the Doges, which is also threatened by pollution and rising waters.

Read also: Hotels, restaurants ... The Venice of the Venetians in 25 addresses

Budapest (Hungary)

Also listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1987, Budapest will have to put the brakes on certain real estate projects if it wants to stay there.

The Unesco committee points to the “



and the construction of ultra-modern buildings which have multiplied in the Hungarian capital, in particular on the banks of the Danube and in the Buda castle district.

Projects maintained despite warnings issued by the Unesco committee in 2019.

Read also: Budapest at bath time: our favorite thermal baths in the Hungarian capital

The Great Barrier Reef (Australia)

The Great Barrier is the world's largest coral reef ecosystem.

ERIC MARTIN / Le Figaro Magazine

In Australia, the Great Barrier Reef also escapes sanction. The coral complex, which extends over 2,300 km and generates 4.8 billion dollars in revenue for the tourism sector, is seriously threatened by global warming. This is evidenced by the bleaching of corals caused by the rise in water temperature. Members of the committee, who have faced intense lobbying from Australia, believe the country should be given more time to take stock of its efforts to conserve the Great Barrier, which was listed as World Heritage in 1981. Australia therefore benefits from a short stay: in February 2022, the country will have to present a report on the state of the Great Barrier Reef and take stock of its efforts to safeguard it.

À lire aussi :Du Kenya à l’Australie, dix voyages de rêve pour vos prochaines évasions

Le complexe naturel W-Arly-Pendjari (Bénin, Burkina Faso et Niger)

Le complexe naturel W-Arly-Pendjari accueille notamment la plus grande population d'éléphants d'Afrique de l'Ouest. DPNP

En Afrique de l'Ouest, le complexe naturel transfrontalier de W-Arly-Pendjari (WAP), qui s'étend sur le Bénin, le Burkina Faso et le Niger, risquait d'être classé dans la liste des biens en péril à cause du risque terroriste. Les mesures prises contre les risques d'attentats, comme l'augmentation des patrouilles de surveillance, ont fait pencher la balance en faveur du site, qui abrite la plus grande population d'éléphants d'Afrique de l'Ouest et la plupart des grands mammifères typiques de la région. La zone reste déconseillée au voyage par la plupart des autorités occidentales. En 2019, deux touristes français qui s'y sont rendus malgré les recommandations du Quai d'Orsay ont été pris en otage ; deux militaires français avaient été tués lors de leur libération.

À lire aussi :Tourisme: comment sont réalisés les conseils aux voyageurs du Quai d’Orsay?

Le site déclassé

Le port marchand de Liverpool (Angleterre)

Le développement effréné du port du Liverpool expliqué son déclassement par l'Unesco. OLIVIER ROQUES ROGERY / Le Figaro Magazine

Le port marchand de Liverpool, en Angleterre, perd son statut de patrimoine mondial. De quoi provoquer la déception du maire de la ville et du gouvernement britannique. Une décision très rare qui n'a concerné que deux sites depuis la création de la liste de l'Unesco en 1972 : le sanctuaire de l'oryx arabe à Oman en 2007 et la vallée de l'Elbe à Dresde (Allemagne) en 2009. Le réaménagement des docks datant de l'époque victorienne, la construction de hauts immeubles et le nouveau stade de football risquent « d'endommager de manière irréversible » la singularité de Liverpool, explique le comité. La ville, connue pour être le berceau des Beatles, était classée depuis 2004 avant de basculer sur la liste des biens en péril en 2012 à cause du projet d'aménagement Liverpool Waters. Un projet qui a été poursuivi malgré les avertissements de l'Unesco...

À lire aussi :48 heures à Londres: on fait le plein d’énergie dans la capitale britannique

Source: lefigaro

All news articles on 2021-07-29

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