#PetriePRLifestyle – 2016 World Day of Heritage: “It’s Your Story, Don’t Lose It”

27 Oct #PetriePRLifestyle – 2016 World Day of Heritage: “It’s Your Story, Don’t Lose It”

“The stories told by this heritage are powerful expressions of culture and place, weaving together personal and collective experience, reflecting the search for meaning shared by all. This heritage provides an anchor in a world of change, especially for local communities, providing records of cultural activities, reflecting the great diversity of expressions.”

– Irina Bokova
Director-General of UNESCO

27 October 2016 marks the World Day of Audiovisual Heritage and this year’s theme is “It’s Your Story, Don’t Lose It”. While most of us do not possess the documentary treasures, there are something we can protect collectively, and build intercultural understanding through – the UNESCO heritage sites.

1. Cambodia – Angkor Wat: Angkor, in Cambodia’s northern province of Siem Reap, is one of the most important archaeological sites of Southeast Asia. It extends over approximately 400 square kilometres and consists of scores of temples, hydraulic structures (basins, dykes, reservoirs, canals) as well as communication routes. For several centuries Angkor, was the centre of the Khmer Kingdom. Temples such as Angkor Wat, the Bayon, Preah Khan and Ta Prohm, exemplars of Khmer architecture, are closely linked to their geographical context as well as being imbued with symbolic significance. The architecture and layout of the successive capitals bear witness to a high level of social order and ranking within the Khmer Empire.


Photo credit: The Telegraph. More information on Angkor Wat: http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/668/

If you are to go to Angkor Wat, don’t miss Phum Baitang. Recently opened, the under-stated luxury resort beckons guests to unwind and completely recharge after a long day exploring the famous temples of the UNESCO heritage site of Angkor, the principle draw card for many savvy tourists from around the world. Phum Baitang, “The Green Village” is simplicity with an eye on detail. It has to be experienced and not just read about.



2. Peru – Machu Picchu: Embedded within a dramatic landscape at the meeting point between the Peruvian Andes and the Amazon Basin, the Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu is among the greatest artistic, architectural and land use achievements anywhere and the most significant tangible legacy of the Inca civilization. Recognized for outstanding cultural and natural values, the mixed World Heritage property covers 32,592 hectares of mountain slopes, peaks and valleys surrounding its heart, the spectacular archaeological monument of “La Ciudadela” (the Citadel) at more than 2,400 meters above sea level. Built in the fifteenth century Machu Picchu was abandoned when the Inca Empire was conquered by the Spaniards in the sixteenth century. It was not until 1911 that the archaeological complex was made known to the outside world.


Photo credit: Wandering Trader. More information on Machu Picchu: http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/274/

Belmond Sanctuary Lodge is the only hotel located adjacent to the ancient Inca citadel of Machu Picchu. It offers its guests exceptionally easy access from early morning to late afternoon, when most of the day visitors and buses have left. Sit out on a terrace and savour Peruvian cuisine based on produce grown on the Lodge’s own plot: this delightful hideaway is the perfect place to relax and unwind in the shadow of the Lost City.


3. Italy – Venice and its lagoon: The UNESCO World Heritage property comprises the city of Venice and its lagoon situated in the Veneto Region of Northeast Italy. Founded in the 5th century AD and spread over 118 small islands, Venice became a major maritime power in the 10th century. The whole city is an extraordinary architectural masterpiece in which even the smallest building contains works by some of the world’s greatest artists such as Giorgione, Titian, Tintoretto, Veronese and others.


Photo credit: Trailfinders. More information on Venice: http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/394

As sumptuous and romantic as the city itself, Aman Venice – set in a 16th-century palazzo on the Grand Canal – is home to museum-quality treasures including Tiepolo frescoes, gilded ceilings and centuries-old leather wall coverings. The hotel, set in the regal Palazzo Papadopoli on the Grand Canal, is in the heart of the city. Moments of beauty are everywhere, from St Mark’s Basilica to chance encounters with a door embellishment or fresco.



4. Myanmar – Bagan Archaeological Area and Monuments: (Currently on UNESCO tentative list) Capital city of the first Myanma Kingdom, the site measures 13 by 8 km and contains more than 2500 Buddhist monuments (temples, stupas, monasteries, etc) built from the 10th to the 14th centuries AD. Several of these monuments are still higly venerated by the population, and attract numerous pilgrims and devotees from all over the country, particularly at festival times. The large corpus of contemporary stone inscriptions have been the most reliable source for the history of the Kingdom. The mural paintings inside more than 300 temples constitutes a unique corpus of paintings of that time in southeast Asia.


Photo credit: Ovation. More information on Bagan: http://whc.unesco.org/en/tentativelists/819/

Belmond announces a 20 Year Anniversary cruise on board the Grand Dame of the Ayeyarwady River, Belmond Road to Mandalay, on 1st October 2016. Marking two decades of exploring the magical rivers of Myanmar, the special four night, five day journey follows the route of the inaugural cruise from Bagan to Mandalay.  With special thanks to the communities along the rivers that have generously welcomed Belmond’s guests for 20 years, five percent of the ticket price for this anniversary cruise will be donated to the Belmond Myanmar Foundation, to support the opening of a new hospital facility in Bagan.



5. India – Hill Forts of Rajasthan: The serial site, situated in the state of Rajastahan, includes six majestic forts in Chittorgarh; Kumbhalgarh; Sawai Madhopur; Jhalawar; Jaipur, and Jaisalmer. The ecclectic architecture of the forts, some up to 20 kilometres in circumference, bears testimony to the power of the Rajput princely states that flourished in the region from the 8th to the 18th centuries. Enclosed within defensive walls are major urban centres, palaces, trading centres and other buildings including temples that often predate the fortifications within which developed an elaborate courtly culture that supported learning, music and the arts. They also feature extensive water harvesting structures, largely still in use today.


Photo credit: UNESCO. More information on Hill Forts of Rajasthan: http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/247

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