This marks the end of our week-long blog series on account of World Heritage Day. While we have over 32 sites in India that have qualified to be World Heritage Sites in the eyes of UNESCO, every single ancient site in India is a beauty by itself. No two sites look and feel the same and more importantly, each one has a different story to tell.
We’ve been travelling together for a while now, and we’ve seen extremes of tourists; there is one kind that is so awestruck that they are glued to the site and don’t let others spend quality time at the site. There is other which I personally find annoying – climbing onto statues, scribbling their names so that they can be part of ‘history’ and those selfies with and while on top of statues and structures for edgy Facebook profile pictures.
Based on our observations and experience, here’s what we think one should (and shouldn’t do) while visiting a heritage site. Remember, this applies to every ancient site that exists in the world today; after all, its one world and we all call it home:
A disclaimer – when I mean ‘you’, it isn’t directed at you my dear reader. If you are reading this, you possibly are as serious as we are, and I like that. Please do not get upset at the tone with which the below points have been written. It’s our duty as travellers to stop those jokers who just ruin the experience for us by doing things that they shouldn’t!
Here’s the last five of the 32 World Heritage Sites found in India. It’s been a crazy week with a plethora of information that we have unearthed for this blog series and it’s just inspired us to travel a lot more and share our stories with you.
The below five are sites that prove one thing: India is a land of extremes and when it comes to art & culture, it is no different. In this post we will be looking at the cultural progress that the country has seen since the dawn of humankind in South Asia, to hill forts that nurtured the fabric of culture from within – this is the most ideal definition of our land.Continue reading
Co-existing in this world today seems to be quite a task. When we look around, all that we can see is intolerance and the usual love-hate relationship that’s probably going to be never-ending. However, what we forget to do these days is look around and realize that India is a standing example of co-existence. While we did have most of it damaged during invasions and wars, we still seem to have some of the best and the most magnificent structures around the world.
Co-existence not only in terms of religion, cultures and beliefs but also styles of architecture that were used to erect each of these structures. To add to that, nature seems to have played an important role in amplifying the idea of co-existence in India – the Mountain Railways of India and Rani-ki-Vav are shining examples.
As a continuation to our World Heritage Week Series, here’s our next 5 World Heritage Sites that stand tall and proud:Continue reading
As an ode to the World Heritage Week blog series we began a few days ago, here’s our fourth post on celebrating the World Heritage Sites present in India and this time, we are turning to the monuments that earmarked the Golden Age of the Mughal Empire.
The Peacock Throne was the seat of power through the Mughal era until the death of Shah Jahan in 1666. The Throne was later taken away by the Persian Emperor, Nadir Shah in 1739 as a war trophy and hasn’t been recovered ever since.
In this post, we will be covering Mughal architecture which is a classical blend of Islamic, Persian, Timurid and traditional Indian styles. We would also see the introduction of the Char Bagh or the four gardens/four rivers of Islamic paradise.Continue reading
As part of our blog series this week, here’s our third post on the next five World Heritage Sites that make our country such a delight to the eyes and the mind. More importantly, it reiterates the fact that we were one of the very few countries to be tolerant towards all cultures and religions and that’s where the beauty lies even today.
But let’s hold onto that thought for about a couple of minutes.
While most of us do hold up these Sites in pride and speak of the rich history and culture that this country has seen unlike any other, some of us don’t understand what it means to take care of these Sites. What we need to understand is that, it’s not just UNESCO’s and ASI’s responsibility to protect these Sites, but its ours too. Littering, scribbling, climbing onto the figurines, digging out small stones to keep as memoirs etc. – all of these are uncalled for. The next time you come across anyone who even attempts to do any of the above, we would urge you to stop them. After all, World Heritage Day is all about respect and protections, yes?Continue reading
It’s not just the man-made structures that makes India the wonder that it is but also acres of wallpaper-like views that are very much alive. In this post, we have listed down the natural sites in India that have been declared World Heritage Sites.Continue reading
It was in the year 1982, during the ICOMOS (International Council for Monuments and Sites) conference in Tunisia that the suggestion of celebrating World Heritage Day was mentioned first. Almost immediately, the Executive Committee approved of the idea and made practical suggestions to the National Committee on how the day is to be celebrated.
The UNESCO General Conference also approved of the suggestion and passed a resolution at its 22nd session in November 1983 recommending that 18th of April each year be the “International Monuments and Sites Day”. This has been traditionally called the World Heritage Day since then.Continue reading