The world is filled with monuments all more incredible than the others. Yet some stand out from the crowd to the point of embodying alone a country or an era . We looked at these and decided to share with you our selection of the 10 most emblematic monuments in the world .
Taj Mahal, India
The construction of the “Palace of the Crown” in Agra took 23 years to bring out this perfectly symmetrical monument. Commissioned in 1630 by the Mughal emperor Shâh Jahân in memory of his wife Arjumand Bânu Begam , the Taj was built in white marble reflecting the changing colors of the day.
The Taj Mahal welcomes around 2.5 million tourists every year . If you have the possibility, we advise you to go there on a full moon night to enjoy a view.
Great Pyramid of Giza, Egypt
Composed of two million stone blocks of two tons each , the Great Pyramid of Giza is the tomb of Pharaoh Khufu (2560 BC). For millennia it holds all the records relating to human constructions (the highest, the most massive, the heaviest). The pyramid of Cheops is the only representative of the seven wonders of the ancient world still visible today.
It was the first tourist attraction in history and counts Marc Antoine and Napoleon among its illustrious visitors. Accompanied on the Giza site of the pyramids of Kephren and Mykérinos as well as the Sphynx, it is part of the most famous site of Egypt and welcomes every year nearly 3 million tourists .
The Great Wall, China
Built from the end of the 15th century to the beginning of the 16th century on the remains of an ancient wall dating back more than 2000 years, the Great Wall covers 6700 kilometers . Serving to delimit and protect the northern border of China, it is the most important architectural structure ever built by man. However, and contrary to a widespread urban legend, it is not visible to the naked eye from space.
With 10 million annual visitors, the Great Wall of China and one of the most visited tourist sites in the world . If you want to discover it, we recommend the Simatai section in Jinshanling.
Eiffel Tower, France
Built in 1889 for the Universal Exhibition in Paris , the tower, originally called the “300-meter tower”, was built by Gustave Eiffel. Its height of 312 meters (at its construction) allowed him to remain for 41 years the highest monument in the world .
A true symbol of Paris and France, the Eiffel Tower welcomes nearly 7 million visitors every year to enjoy a breathtaking panorama of the French capital.
Empire State Building, USA
Located in the heart of Manhattan, the Empire State Building is, at the height of its 381 meters, the second largest skyscraper in New York and the fourth largest in the Americas. Inaugurated in 1931, it is with its 102 floors one of the symbols of the city. His extensive staging in movies and series (King Kong, How I Met Your Mother, Friends …) has strengthened its image internationally.
Each year, the 73 elevators of the Empire State Building propel 4 million visitors to the 86th floor observatory, which is open to the public. It is then possible to enjoy a unique 360-degree panorama of New York, its surroundings and the Atlantic Ocean.
Big Ben, England
If today Big Ben is the name commonly used to refer to the Palace of Westminster and the Clock Tower in London , this is originally the nickname given to the large bell of 13.5 tons installed in the tower. The construction of the clock tower was decided in 1835 following the fire that ravaged the Palace of Westminter and in 1839, Big Ben is integrated into the bell tower belfry. The crack appeared only a few months after its installation and gave it its unique tone helped make Big Ben the most famous bell in the world .
If the visit of the building is reserved for British residents, the panorama offered by this monument remains nevertheless one of the most emblematic of London .
Machu Picchu, Peru
The “Lost City of the Incas”, Machu Picchu culminates on a rocky promontory at 2350m . Invisible from below, it was forgotten for centuries before being rediscovered by Hiram Bingham in 1911. Built around 1440 partly without mortar, it offers a testimony of the precision of the construction thanks to the ruins of the palace, baths and temples. It is today considered a key remnant of Inca architecture .
Due to its architectural features and the mystery that literature has woven on the site, Machu Picchu has become one of the most popular tourist destinations on the planet . He joined the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1983 and was named one of the Seven New Wonders of the World in 2007.
The Colosseum, Italy
The Colosseum of Rome is the largest amphitheater ever built in the Roman Empire as well as one of the masterpieces of Roman architecture. Completed in 80 AD, it took almost 10 years to build a monument capable of hosting up to 75,000 spectators . Used for 500 years, it is now partly in ruins following an earthquake and its use as a career.
True witness of the power of Imperial Rome, it is with its 4 million visitors a year, one of the major tourist attractions of Rome .
Sydney Opera House, Australia
Recognizable among all and true emblem of the city and Australia, the Sydney Opera House, inaugurated in 1973, is a major architectural work of the twentieth century . Directed by the Danish Jørn Utzon, he has established himself as a global icon of architecture through its design, construction and magnificent integration into Sydney Harbor.
Considered to be one of the most active entertainment centers in the world, Opera attracts more than 4 million visitors each year who are curious to discover the many venues open to the public. The main one, the Concert Hall, seats 2,679 people and has the largest organ in the world. A guided visit of one hour in French will allow you to discover the opera. Anglophones will also enjoy a behind-the-scenes guided tour of one of the world’s most photographed buildings.
Angkor Wat, Cambodia
Angkor Wat is the largest temple of the ancient capital of Khmer kings: the city of Angkor . Masterpiece of King Suryarman II, considered the Louis XIV Khmer, it was built in the 12th century. The best preserved temple in Angkor and the main tourist site of the country, it has become the symbol of Cambodia . It is the only monument in the world to appear on the national flag.
Perfect completion of the Khmer Temple, Angkor Wat delight visitors with the grandeur and harmony of its architecture. The temple is even considered by many to be the eighth wonder of the world .
Here we are at the end of our selection. Like all selections it reflects a certain bias, so we invite you to share your comments and offer us other monuments in the comments .