Sunday, January 31, 2016

new 7 wonders of world 2015

Pyramid at Chichén Itzá: Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico

One of the top tourist hotspots in the world, Chichen Itza is the most famous temple city built in Yucatan, Mexico by the Maya civilization. This impressive archaeological site served as the political and economic center of the Mayan civilization and rose to prominence in 600 AD. "Chichen Itza" literally means "At the mouth of the well of the Itza" and consists of numerous splendid stone architectures of which the magnificent Kukulkan Pyramid occupies the centre stage. Known locally as “El Castillo” (the castle), the Kukulkan Pyramid has recently been voted as one of the new seven wonders of the world and is actually a temple dedicated to Kukulkan, the Plumed Serpent. Every year in the fall and spring equinox, during the rising and setting of the sun, the side of the building casts a shadow which appears as a plumed snake along the steps of the structure.

Machu Picchu, Cuzco (Peru)

A marvellous Latin-American construction, the Machu Picchu is an ancient fortress city of the Incas situated in the Andes Mountains, south-central Peru. Also known as "The Lost City of the Incas", the construction of Machu Picchu began around 1430 AD during the glorious days of the Inca Empire but was abandoned in the 16th century at the time of Spanish invasion. The site was rediscovered by U.S. explorer Hiram Bingham in 1911. The architecture has been constructed with polished dry-stone walls and consists of several buildings, primary of which are the Intihuatana, the Temple of the Sun, and the Room of the Three Windows.

Roman Colosseum, Rome (Italy)

The Colosseum of Rome is considered to be one of the greatest pieces of Roman architecture. A marvellous specimen of Roman engineering, the Colosseum is an elliptical amphitheatre situated in the centre of Rome. The biggest amphitheatre ever to be built in Rome, it has a capacity of 50,000 spectators and was primarily used for gladiatorial contests, royal speeches and dramatic performances. The construction of the Colosseum began between 70 and 72 AD under emperor Vespasian and ended in 80 AD during the time of Titus. Some changes were, however, made later during the rule of Emperor Domitian. Made of travertine stone and iron clamps, the Colosseum today attracts millions of visitors in Rome annually. In recent years, it has become a sign of the international campaign against capital punishment as well as a symbol of Roman Christianity. Every Good Friday, the Pope leads a torchlit "Way of the Cross" procession around the various levels of the amphitheatre. The image of this magnificent structure can also be found on the Italian version of the five-cent euro coin.

Christ Redeemer: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Undoubtedly a modern marvel, "Christ the Redeemer" ("O Cristo Redentor" in Portuguese) is a statue of Jesus Christ that weighs 635 tons, stands 98 ft (30 m) wide and 120 ft (38 m) high with its pedestal. Constructed of reinforced concrete and soapstone, this wonderful piece of architecture is located in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, at the top of the Corcovado mountain (2,300 ft) in the Tijuca Forest National Park overlooking the city. It was in 1921 that the Catholic Circle of Rio proposed for the construction of the statue which received acceptance. The statue was designed by Heitor da Silva Costa, a local engineer, and sculpted by French sculptor Paul Landowski. The whole structure took nine years to be completed, from 1922 to 1931, and was opened on October 12, 1931. The cost of construction was $250,000, which came from donations by Brazilian Catholics, collected by the Catholic Circle of Rio. The statue depicts Jesus Christ with his head bent and arms stretched wide open, a stance that reminds of the crucifixion that the messiah underwent to propagate his message of peace to us. It is a significant symbol of Brazil's Christianity.
Image credit: Wikipedia

Petra: Jordan

The most popular spot of Jordan, the Petra is an ancient rock city that contains about 800 magnificent rock structures including a mausoleum, a two-storeyed temple, a shrine, a palace, general dwellings and a royal treasury - the "Khazneh elFarun" - which is the most popular of all the buildings. This beautiful city was carved out of rocks and inhabited by the Nabataeans more than 500 years before Christ's birth. These industrious Arab people turned it into an important business center and Petra quickly became an important trade route linking the Asian countries with the south Arabian nations Egypt, Syria, Greece and Rome. The city was later under the domination of the Crusaders which ended with the Muslim conquest. But then Petra was completely abandoned and rediscovered only in 1812 by Swiss explorer Johann Ludwig Burckhardt.

Tajmahal (Agra, India)

The Taj Mahal is an ivory-white marble mausoleum on the south bank of the Yamuna river in the Indian city of Agra.  It was commissioned in 1632 by the Mughal emperor, Shah Jahan (reigned 1628–1658), to house the tomb of his favourite wife, Mumtaz Mahal. Taj Mahal is regarded as a perfect jewel of Muslim art in India. The tomb is the centrepiece of a 42-acre complex, which includes a mosque and a guest house, and is set in formal gardens bounded on three sides.

Great Wall of China: China

The Great Wall of China is built along an east-to-west line across the historical northern borders of China to protect the Chinese states and empires against the raids and invasions of the various nomadic groups of the Eurasian Steppe. It  is a series of fortifications made of stone, brick, tamped earth, wood, and other materials.  Especially famous is the wall built 220–206 BCE by Qin Shi Huang, the first Emperor of China. Little of that wall remains. Since then, the Great Wall has on and off been rebuilt, maintained, and enhanced; the majority of the existing wall is from the Ming Dynasty.


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