It’s sad to see that there’s only one of the original Seven Wonders of the World left; the Pyramid of Giza. The other six Wonders have been destroyed over time, most of them by Mother Nature’s fury.
Several projects and foundations have tried to come up with lists with new Wonders of the World, such as the Seven Wonders of the Modern World or the New7Wonders (which is still open for votes), ever since.
As true Europofiles (is that a word?), we honestly believe that there are more than enough amazing man-made creations to be found in Europe, to create a list with the Seven European Wonders of the World.
1. Colosseum, Rome (Italy)
In 72 AD, the Romans started with building the Colosseum. This amphitheater, where over 1,5 million slaves and wild animals were killed, was initially named Amphitheatrum Flavium (after emperor Flavio), but even the old Romans knew a thing or two about branding. The majority of the Colosseum is still in tact, despite several earthquakes and brutal wars.
2. Acropolis, Athens (Greece)
The Acropolis is a 500 foot high mountain in the Greek capital Athens. Several ancient Greek structures are situated on top of this mountain, including the Parthenon and the Temple of Athena Nike. The monuments were built around 430 BC, making all of the buildings nearly 2,500 years old. Many of the archaeological findings from the area are preserved in the nearby Acropolis Museum.
3. Alhambra, Granada (Spain)
The Alhambra, which means ‘red palace’, is a medieval fortress, built by the Moorish rulers of the Emirate of Granada in Al-Andalus. While the building started in the 9th century AD, it wasn’t until the year 1350 before the current shapes of the Alhambra started to show. The complex measures a stunning 35 acres, and contains several palace halls, beautiful gardens and 13 huge towers.
4. Hagia Sophia, Istanbul (Turkey)
The Hagia Sophia, pride of the Turkish capital Istanbul, has served many purposes over the years. It started as a cathedral in 360 AD, was turned into a mosque in 1453, until it became a museum in 1935. The Hagia Sophia, which means ‘sacred wisdom’, was the largest cathedral in the world until Seville Cathedral was completed in 1520, and is world famous for the enormous dome and the many beautiful mosaics.
(Images via Discover all world, Awesome Planet and Biblical Paths)
5. Stonehenge, Amesbury (England)
Stonehenge is a prehistoric monument from the Neolithic period, located at around 60 miles west of London. It is assumed that the first stone was erected around 2,500 BC, and that new stones were added to the circular composition until 1,600 BC. Researchers are still not sure about the exact use of Stonehenge, although most assume that it was a mix of a cemetery and a ritual monument.
(Images via Wikipedia)
6. St. Basil’s Cathedral, Moscow (Russia)
The Cathedral of Intercession of Theotokos on the Moat (also known as St. Basil’s Cathedral or Pokrov Cathedral) was built in the Russian capital Moscow between 1555 and 1560, under the command of Ivan the Terrible. According to the legend, Ivan cut out the eyes of the architect after the building of the cathedral was finalized, to make sure that he would never build a building more beautiful than St. Basil’s. Yes, they called Ivan ‘The Terrible’ for a reason…
7. Neuschwanstein Castle, Füssen (Germany)
The youngest building in this list was finalized in 1892, and was built to house just one person: King Ludwig. Unfortunately for him, he never lived in Neuschwanstein Castle, as he died just before the last workers had left the building. Neuschwanstein Castle was the inspiration for Sleeping Beauty Castle in Walt Disney World Resort, Florida.
We admit that we had a hard time choosing the Seven Wonders, as we had to turn down at least seven other amazing buildings. Our backup list contains Sagrada Familia (Barcelona), the Reichstag (Berlin), the Eiffel Tower (Parjs), Catharine Palace (St. Petersburg), Pechersk Lavra (Kiev), de Piazza del Duomo (Pisa) and Ely Cathedral (Cambridgeshire).
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