We’ve always been intrigued in how and who chooses the 7 Wonders of the World. In fact, which are they really?
There are several lists of wonders selected in different moments and with different characteristics to catalogue the world’s most spectacular natural wonders and manmade structures. The number seven was chosen because the Greeks believed it represented perfection and plenty, and because it was the number of the five planets known anciently, plus the sun and moon. The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, the first known list, included Great Pyramid of Giza, Hanging Gardens of Babylon, Statue of Zeus at Olympia, Temple of Artemis at Ephesus, Mausoleum at Halicarnassus, Colossus of Rhodes, Lighthouse of Alexandria.
In 2001 the New7Wonders Foundation chose the New7Wonders of the World from a selection of 200 existing monuments. After a worldwide election process, the following 7 where chosen:
Chichen Itza, c. AD 600, Mexico
While living in the Riviera Maya for 6 years, I had the priviledge to visit this “wonder” several times. Chichen Itza which means “at the mouth of the well of Itza “, was a mandatory place I would take my guests and visitor. The Kukulkan Pyramid, “El Castillo” (the castle), is exactly 24 m. high considering the upper platform. There many other archaeological sites to visit within the Yucatan peninsula, all carrying traces from Mayan Culture.
Taj Mahal’s structure is as impressive as it’s story. Shah Jahan dedicated the construction of this building to Mumtaz Mahal (Arjumand Bano Begum), the wife of Shah. 20.000 workers labored and 32 crore rupees were spent during the construction of the monument and it was built according to Islamic architecture. Many say it’s the greatest expression of love. I was able to admire its beauty in detail that time I was in Agra. Breathtaking!
The Roman Colosseum was built nearly 2000 years ago for the purpose of hosting violent gladiator games. Thousands of men and animals fought for their lives in the sandy arena. The two times I was in Rome I was surprised at how this gigantic structure survived all these years, now standing in the middle of the city, in juxtaposition with the modern world.
Just like a gigantic dragon, the Great Wall winds up and down across desserts, grasslands, mountains and plateaus, stretching approximately 8,851.8 kilometers from east to west of China. With a history of more than 2000 years, some of the sections are now in ruins or have disappeared. However, it is still wonderful and one of the places we would love to visit for a long and exciting trekking.
Pili and Pancho didn’t miss the largest Art Deco-style sculpture in the world during their holidays in warm and vibrant Rio De Janeiro. This colossal statue of Jesus Christ at the summit of Mount Corcovado stands 30 metres tall, its horizontally outstretched arms spanning 28 metres, is made of reinforced concrete clad in a mosaic of thousands of triangular soapstone tiles.
It was always a dream of mine to visit Machu Picchu, especially after Pili showed me her photos and told me her experience at this majestic city that soars above the Urabamba Valley. The Incan built structure has been deemed the “Lost Cities”, unknown until its relatively recent discovery in 1911. Archaeologists estimate that approximately 1200 people could have lived in the area, though many theorize it was most likely a retreat for Incan rulers. Lucky this year, I was able to visit my friend Ruby in Peru and travel 2438 metres above sea level to find this “wonder” nestled on a small hilltop between the Andean Mountain Range.
Inhabited since prehistoric times, this Nabataean caravan-city, situated between the Red Sea and the Dead Sea, was an important crossroads between Arabia, Egypt and Syria-Phoenicia. Petra is half-built, half-carved into the rock, and is surrounded by mountains riddled with passages and gorges. Sounds amazing, looks amazing, Petra is moving top of our bucket list now!
We had a fantastic time while riding the camels around the Pyramids with Flor. A very “affectionate” guide made us take all the typical photos while explaining that the Great Pyramid of Giza was built for the Fourth Dynasty Pharaoh Khufu (or Cheops), and is the largest of the three pyramids in the Giza Necropolis located in modern Cairo. It’s the only Wonder of the Ancient World (mentioned above) that still remains.Sources:
Colosseum: Maps of World