The world has some amazing man-made landmarks that should be on everyone’s travel bucket list. So if you are planning your trips for 2019 and you need some inspiration, then let me help you decide where to go.
I have written down 10 (in my opinion) some of the most iconic landmarks you should see in your lifetime. While most of these names will no doubt be familiar, and you sure have seen most of them on Instagram or online, you won’t be able to appreciate their iconic stature until you are right in front of them.
In this post, I will show you some of the most iconic landmarks in the world.
THE TAJ MAHAL
The Taj Mahal is an ivory-white marble mausoleum on the south bank of the Yumna river in the city of Agra. Built or commissioned by the emperor Shah Jahan in 1631 as a symbol of love in memory of his favorite wife Mumtaz, Nawwww! Everyone I know who has visited this magnificent building has raved of its beauty and size (apparently a lot bigger than you think in person) and I myself can NOT wait to go one day. Listed as one of the seven wonders of the world… well, the domed marble palace anyway but same, same hah! and one of the most visited places in India, with over 8 million people setting foot on its marble each year!)
Unfortunately, time has taken a toll on this building – I mean she’s only close to 400 years old! pollution and acid rain have caused the building to start changing into a yellow color so restoration work is being undertaken but that’s ok, sometimes just to see such greatness – even if slightly damaged or worn from so long ago, can be a really touching experience.
Fact #1: The Taj Mahal was built by a whopping 22,000 laborer’s, painters, stonecutters, and embroidery artists and as rumor has it, that the emperor ruled that all who worked on the palace had to have their hands chopped off, so no one could make anything like it again. Gee Mate! a simple ” please don’t replicate my building, cheers for your hard work” would have sufficed. Poor bastards!! (that’s if the rumor is true of course, history and all its myths lol)
Fact #2: The changing moods of the Emperor’s wife are well captured by the changing hues of the Mausoleum at different times of the day. It takes a pinkish hue in the morning, milky white in the evening and golden at night when illuminated by moonlight – talk about romantical and some dang good designing!
THE EIFFEL TOWER
What is Paris without the famously beautiful Eiffel tower? What is France for that matter? That’s just how Iconic this building is. Built-in 1889 and originally designed to be built and displayed in Barcelona say what? Yes, it is true, the Spanish council decided it was too expensive and did not match the aesthetics of the city. So, France it was! And in my opinion a great choice! The tower is 324 meters tall and has three platforms, two restaurants, a banquet hall, a champagne bar and of course many gift shops (what would any landmark be without the gift shops haha!) So there is plenty to do, lots to see, history to be learned, food for when you are starving from all those steps and views worthy of tears.
Fact #1: During cold weather, the tower shrinks by about six inches.
Fact #2: During the German occupation, the tower’s lift cables were cut, and the tower closed to the public. Nazi soldiers then attempted to attach a swastika to the top, but it was so large it blew away and had to be replaced with a smaller one.
SYDNEY OPERA HOUSE
The Sydney Opera house is easily recognized as Australia’s most iconic building. Formally opened only a short 45 years ago on the 20th of October 1973, she would be by far the youngest landmark on this list, so young my Mom actually remembers what it was like when there was no opera house hahah! sorry, Mom, that’s telling your age a bit.
Ideally situated in what I think is one of the most stunning harbors in the world and surrounded by incredible bars, restaurants, and cafes – (we don’t want you getting hungry now, listening to all that opera) … you are sure to have an incredible experience when visiting. The Sydney harbor bridge is also located diagonally to the left (I like to think they are siblings), the beautiful botanic gardens to the right and the harbor all around, which makes for INSANE pictures! Trust me 😉
Check out a few cheeky facts below if you would like to know more:
Fact #1: The initial concept for the opera houses unique sails supposedly struck architect Jon Utzon while he was peeling an orange and admiring its segmented nature. WOW-Y! 1. I will never look at the orange the same 2. we have a building that is designed after an orange, yup! hahaha! nothing against it of course, whatever gets the ideas flowing 🙂
Fact #2: The original cost estimate to build the Sydney Opera House was $7 million – not bad, not bad a reasonable price but the final cost came to $102 million… What the! Shut the front door :O and was paid largely by the state lottery. Iconic building = Iconic cost Wowzah!
Are you not entertained?! Sorry, I had to, it’s the Colosseum, after all, you know Gladiators etc tehe.
Imagine the year is sometime 2000 years ago, imagine what it would have been like? What would have been happening, how bloody scary it would have been…the noise, the atmosphere, the blood, the Adrenaline! Would it have really been entertaining or just flipping frightening lol? Some of the questions you can ask yourself when stepping foot in this monumental piece of history.
I decided to do a few more facts for this landmark as there are so many interesting ones! Couldn’t help it 🙂
Fun Fact #1: It is thought that over 500,000 people lost their lives and over a million wild animals were killed throughout the duration of the Colosseum hosted people vs. beast game. Keeping in mind this was entertainment in those days – no movies, phones etc. Would you have gone?
Fun Fact #2: There were 36 trap doors in Arena allowing for elaborate special effects.
Fun Fact #3: Many natural disasters devastated the structure of the Colosseum, but it was the earthquakes of 847 AD and 1231 AD that caused most of the damage you see today.
Fun Fact #4: The Colosseum has over 80 entrances and can accommodate about 50,000 spectators.
Fun Fact #5: Despite its brutal pagan origins, the Colosseum has been used as a worship space by Christians over the centuries. A large cross was removed in the 1870’s during a frenzy of secular archaeology funded by the new Italian state. That cross was replaced by Mussolini in 1926 in a cynical effort to placate Catholics.
CHRIST THE REDEEMER
A visit to Christ the Redeemer is on my immediate must-do-now bucket list! I’ve just been dying to go to Brazil over the last few years and all the pictures that I’ve seen of this statue are nothing short of incredible!
Voted one of the 7 wonders of the world, an art deco statue of Jesus Christ standing at an impressive 98 feet high and more than 2,326 feet above sea level! With Breathtaking views over Guanabara Bay and of the whole of Rio, not to mention a pretty cool ride up the Corcovado mountain, be it by car, gondola or walking (if you dare haha).
Fun Fact #1: The Statue weighs approximately 635 tonnes!
Fun Fact #2: Christ the Redeemer is the 5th largest statue of Jesus.
One of the 7 modern wonders of the world, Machu Picchu is an incredible and breathless experience which leave you mesmerized at the history behind it. Machu Picchu was built in 1450 but abandoned during the Spanish conquest (ah man!) and undiscovered until 1911 by archeologist Hiram Bingham, How amazing?!
A landmark that I can bet nearly every person dream of seeing in their lifetime. Perched high amongst the mist-soaked mountains of Peru so prepare for altitude sickness – that bitch is lethal and old ruins that are stepped in wonder and mystery like what was the true purpose of this eerie place and how are the structures carved to such perfection? Hmm historie is amazing isn’t it!
I know where I will be going next…
Fact #1: In the Quechua language “Machu Picchu” means “old Peak” or “old Mountain”
Fact #2: Machu Picchu is made up of more than 150 buildings ranging from baths and houses to temples and sanctuaries.
THE GOLDEN GATE STATE BRIDGE
A second American landmark – I know, I know but this bridge is iconic if not the most Iconic and well-known bridge in the world, so it felt wrong to leave it out. Described as the most beautiful and most photographed bridge in the world with over 10 million visitors a year! Goodness :O The Golden Gate Bridge is a suspension bridge spanning the Golden Gate strait, the one-mile-wide, three-mile-long channel between San Francisco Bay and the Pacific Ocean – So its long, very long haha
Officially opened on the 27th of May 1937 and was until 1964 the longest suspension bridge main span in the world at 4200 feet – pretty amazing. Having gone to San Fran cisco only a couple of times and when I was very young means I don’t completely remember a lot but apparently, we drove across it which is apparently so out of fashion now haha. Walk and bike tours are now hugely popular and are a fun and great way to not only see this incredible bridge but the amazing San Fran as well.
Fun Fact #1: Steps were taken to keep the workers safe, but nothing could prevent all accidents. There was a safety net that was suspended under the bridge to catch workers who fell. It saved 19 of them, but 11 men weren’t so lucky and lost their lives during the construction of the Golden Gate Bridge. Meh ☹
Fun Fact #2: The Navy originally wanted the bridge painted black and yellow eeek! Bumblebee bridge would have been its name lol. They wanted those specific colors, so it would be easily visible for passing ships huh? thank god they changed their minds and had it painted the now, visible, iconic color of orange, which still offers excellent visibility in San Frans Legendary fog.
STATUE OF LIBERTY
A gift from France and a powerful symbol of Freedom, friendship, democracy, hope, and the American dream(oh and world peace!). I know, not what you thought she was all about right? Another huge statue lady, pouting her lips with her crown on in nothing but a bed sheet with books in her hand – just typical haha! The Statue of Liberty is situated on Ellis Island which in its own right is a historic landmark. A ferry rides away from the city and she’s all yours for the day, which I might add is truly all apart of the experience of going to see the Statue of Liberty. The stories you will hear and history you will learn are priceless when visiting this landmark, so I would absolutely recommend it to everyone 😊
Fact #1: The Statue of Liberty measures 305 feet 1 inch from the ground to the tip of the flame and is as tall as a 22-story building. In 1886, it was the tallest structure in New York City. Wow, that is one tall lady!
Fact #2: Chains and a broken shackle lie at the Statue’s feet, which symbolize the Statue as a woman free from oppression and servitude – I chose this fact as it seemed to just fit perfectly with our climate in the world towards women in 2018. I think Liberty would be happy with the direction in which things are going.
PYRAMIDS OF EGYPT
Who doesn’t want to visit the pyramids of Egypt? what an absolutely amazing memory to have! A land of dreams for those of us who love travel. Wonder and mystery and wonder and mystery and some amazement thrown in there too….. ahh gosh, I can only imagine what it would be like to see such an incredible piece of history in the flesh. Most Pyramids were built as tombs for the country’s Pharaohs and their consorts during the old and middle kingdom periods (so pretty much a VERY old grave-yard? Grave Pyramid?). The amazing thing is there is still so much that is unknown and so many questions that are yet to be answered which all a part of the mystery of how something so big and magnificent was built SOOO long ago and without nearly any of the advanced equipment that modern society has.
Growing up I was OBSESSED with Ancient Egypt, so I think I would probably have a constant shocked look on my face or a tear or two may be shed haha when I finally step foot in one. What are your thoughts on the Pyramids? Have you been? Would you like to go… let us know in the comment section below. I would love to hear from you guys(or girls lol)!
Fun Fact #1: How many Pyramids do you think are still standing today? 5, 10 maybe 100 tops? Nope well more than 5000!
Fun Fact #2: The Slaves that were making the Pyramids did back-breaking work day in and day out ( I wouldn’t want their job) and were paid in gallons of beer, yes you heard me right… not in gold or money but in beer. In those times beer was classed higher than coins and was what they needed and probably wanted 😉 after all that work.
THE GREAT WALL OF CHINA
What would this top 10 list be without the Great Wall of China!? Rubbish or unfinished I would think. The Great Wall of China is the mother of all walls and shows us how its done when it comes to the coolest world landmarks. The official length of the wall is 21,196.18 Km! (longest man-made structure in the world) WHAT A BEAST! My mind cannot even comprehend it lol! and it is over 2000 years old! WHOAH!
In the past, it was used as a huge (obviously haha) military line of defense but has now become a unique world heritage site and Symbol of China. I have seen so many awesome videos of people tobogganing down a certain part of the wall – how fun! after what was probably a large hike up some steep steps ouch! but worth it!
Fun Fact #1: The Great Wall is not a continuous line, Oh? there are side walls, circular walls, parallel walls, and sections with no wall (high mountains or rivers form a barrier instead). So lots of different types of walls, all the walls a person could want!
Fun Fact #2: There most popular Great Wall legend is about Meng Jiangnv, whose husband died building the Wall. Her weeping was so bitter that a section of the Wall collapsed, revealing her husband’s bones so she could bury them. – Probably like SpongeBob’s tears, you know where he cries and cries and cries and soaks it up again only to cry and cry some more! :O
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