Skip to main content

UNESCO adds 19 sites to World Heritage List

By CNN Travel staff
June 24, 2013 -- Updated 0826 GMT (1626 HKT)
A 16,603-hectare site in Southern Yunnan, the Honghe Hani rice terraces stretch from the slopes of the Ailao Mountains to the banks of the Hong River. "Over the past 1,300 years, the Hani people have developed a complex system of channels to bring water from the forested mountaintops to the terraces," says UNESCO's Honghe Hani inscription. <!-- -->
</br> A 16,603-hectare site in Southern Yunnan, the Honghe Hani rice terraces stretch from the slopes of the Ailao Mountains to the banks of the Hong River. "Over the past 1,300 years, the Hani people have developed a complex system of channels to bring water from the forested mountaintops to the terraces," says UNESCO's Honghe Hani inscription.
HIDE CAPTION
Honghe Hani Rice Terraces (China)
Xinjiang Tianshan (China)
Lewa Wildlife Conservancy (Kenya)
Namib Sand Sea (Namibia)
Mount Etna (Italy)
Tajik National Park (Tajikistan)
El Pinacate and Gran Desierto de Altar (Mexico)
Hill Forts of Rajashtan (India)
Wooden Tserkvas (Poland/Ukraine)
Al Zubarah Archaeological Site (Qatar)
Fujisan (Japan)
Kaesong (North Korea)
Bergpark Wilhelmshöhe (Germany)
Medici Villas and Gardens in Tuscany (Italy)
Ancient City of Tauric Chersonese (Ukraine)
Red Bay Basque Whaling Station (Canada)
University of Coimbra (Portugal)
Levuka Historical Port Town (Fiji)
Golestan Palace (Iran)
Syrian Arab Republic
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
>
>>
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • UNESCO Committee gives 19 sites World Heritage status
  • Japan's Mount Fuji, North Korea's Kaeson Fortress added to list
  • First inscriptions for Fiji, Qatar

(CNN) -- Nineteen new sites have been added to UNESCO's World Heritage list -- the top honor for monuments, buildings, sites or natural features "of outstanding universal value."

The UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) World Heritage Committee is meeting in the Cambodian capital Phnom Penh for its 37th annual session.

A reported 34 sites were up for consideration. Though Italy and China lead the pack with two new inscriptions apiece, it's been a particularly exciting year for Qatar and Fiji, which are now celebrating the addition of their first World Heritage sites.

Qatar's walled coastal town of Al Zubarah in the Gulf and Fiji's Levuka Historical Port Town were both announced as new additions on Saturday.

Other notable new inscriptions include Japan's Mount Fuji, Namibia's Namib Sand Sea, the Red Bay Basque Whaling Station in Canada and North Korea's Kaesong Fortress.

Here's the full list of 19 sites granted UNESCO World Heritage status by the committee:

1. Xinjiang Tianshan (China)

2. Mount Etna (Italy)

3. El Pinacate and Gran Desierto de Altar Biosphere Reserve (Mexico)

4. Namib Sand Sea (Namibia)

5. Tajik National Park (Tajikistan)

6. Red Bay Basque Whaling Station (Canada)

7. Cultural Landscape of Honghe Hani Rice Terraces (China)

8. Historic Monuments and Sites in Kaesong (North Korea)

9. Levuka Historical Port Town (Fiji)

10. Bergpark Wilhelmshöhe (Germany)

11. Hill Forts of Rajashtan (India)

12. Golestan Palace (Iran)

13. Medici Villas and Gardens in Tuscany (Italy)

14. Fujisan, sacred place and source of artistic inspiration (Japan)

15. Historic Centre of Agadez (Niger)

16. Wooden Tserkvas of the Carpathian Region in Poland and Ukraine (Poland / Ukraine)

17. University of Coimbra -- Alta and Sofia (Portugal)

18. Al Zubarah Archaeological Site (Qatar)

19. Ancient City of Tauric Chersonese and its Chora (Ukraine)

The UNESCO World Heritage List features 981 sites from 160 countries that are party to the World Heritage Convention.

Of these, 759 are cultural, 193 natural and 29 mixed properties.

Meanwhile, the UNESCO committee made a few changes to its "List of World Heritage in Danger."

Iran's Bam citadel was removed from the danger list while East Rennell of the Solomon Island was added, along with the six World Heritage sites of Syria.

UNESCO's World Heritage Committee has put off its decision on whether to place the Great Barrier Reef on the in danger list until 2014.

More on CNN:

20 of the world's most beautiful World Heritage Sites
World's best unknown hike: Japan's Kumano Kodo
What's the big deal about having a UNESCO World Heritage Site

Part of complete coverage on
July 24, 2014 -- Updated 2042 GMT (0442 HKT)
From Maastricht to Melbourne, these itineraries make bookish travelers look stylish.
July 29, 2014 -- Updated 0858 GMT (1658 HKT)
Good cocktails combine with spectacular views across rivers, cityscapes and oceans at these bird-level drinkeries.
July 24, 2014 -- Updated 1809 GMT (0209 HKT)
A California homeowner's nightmare has become a cautionary tale for those who rent their homes to strangers.
July 21, 2014 -- Updated 0226 GMT (1026 HKT)
Cinema loves portraying the lives of expats. Sometimes it gets it right. Sometimes it casts Nick Nolte as a jungle king.
July 23, 2014 -- Updated 0117 GMT (0917 HKT)
Don't be intimidated, says a local expert. Here's how to do China without the hassles
July 24, 2014 -- Updated 1233 GMT (2033 HKT)
When your city has an unenviable reputation for insulting tourists and fleecing them for every cent, inviting hotel guests to pay what they want could be a risky move.
July 24, 2014 -- Updated 0710 GMT (1510 HKT)
1937 Auto Union V16 Streamliner, Audi Museum, Germany
With factory tours and collections of stunning vintage prototypes, southern Germany is petrolhead paradise.
July 22, 2014 -- Updated 1344 GMT (2144 HKT)
Every tourist destination has a flip side, a season when prices go down and savvy, flexible travelers can score big savings.
July 23, 2014 -- Updated 0711 GMT (1511 HKT)
A Marrakech lamp bazaar
Morocco's Red City is crammed with stunning gardens, shaded souks and steamy bath houses.
July 23, 2014 -- Updated 1652 GMT (0052 HKT)
Santo Stefano Island, Italy
Pristine beaches, unspoiled nature and few tourists -- a stretch on these former penal colonies is no longer a punishment.
July 22, 2014 -- Updated 0923 GMT (1723 HKT)
Life in Joburg can be stressful. Luckily there are some exceedingly non-stressful places close by.
July 21, 2014 -- Updated 0907 GMT (1707 HKT)
Istanbul skyline
CNN's Ivan Watson pays homage to the city he's called home for the past 12 years.
China notches up another superlative achievement as a Nanjing-based artist creates the world's largest and longest anamorphic painting.
July 20, 2014 -- Updated 2002 GMT (0402 HKT)
In what is undoubtedly the world's "coolest" surf video, photographer Chris Burkhard endures freezing temperatures, blizzards and injury to capture Arctic waves and their riders.
July 17, 2014 -- Updated 0339 GMT (1139 HKT)
Few airline routes are as cutthroat as the one that travels between London and New York. It is the world's busiest route and there are few lengths airlines won't go to in the hopes of getting a piece of the action.