Hiroshima Peace Memorial

Hiroshima Peace Memorial

During World War II, the world’s first deployed atomic bomb was dropped from an American B-29 bomber flying high above the Japanese city of Hiroshima, on 6th August, 1945.

The most recognisable symbol of the atomic bombing in Hiroshima is the skeletal remains of the Atomic Bomb Dome.

Designed by Czech architect Jan Letzel, in 1915, the Hiroshima Prefectural Commercial Exhibition Hall was one of the city’s best-known sights.

The Hiroshima Peace Memorial was declared an UNESCO World Heritage site in 1996.

Barack Obama became the first sitting U.S. president to visit Hiroshima, where he called for a ‘world without nuclear weapons’ during his remarks at the city’s Peace Memorial Park; on Friday 27th May, 2016.

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Taj Mahal Detail

Taj Mahal Detail

A detail of the Taj Mahal that not everyone sees.

When pointing a camera at tourist attractions that millions of people have captured, especially with all the mobile phones and selfie sticks being waved around today, it pays to look for something a little more original.

If anyone can get there, anyone can take a picture, but not everyone can see something a little more artistic.

Moving away from the crowds allows us to compose a detail of the place that has an unique angle to it.

Strong colour, lines, shadow and even a slight reflection all help to give an architectural detail a whole new life of its own.

Is that really the Taj Mahal? Well, it’s one of the four 40m high minarets that surround the mausoleum

Montebello – Bellinzona, Switzerland

Montebello - Bellinzona, Switzerland

Bellinzona is home to three of the best-preserved medieval castles in Switzerland (Castelgrande, Montebello, and Sasso Corbaro); UNESCO World Heritage Sites since the year 2000.

The Ramparts of Bellinzona connect Castelgrande to Castello di Montebello.

I was lucky with the early March weather when I climbed up on to the ramparts, just as the golden glow of the setting sun painted a beautiful picture for the handful of photographers gathered to capture the image; while a young couple gazed lovingly the other way.

The Three Castles, Defensive Wall and Ramparts make a visit to the Italian canton of Ticino’s capital one of the highlights on The Grand Tour of Switzerland; a city that many tourists on their way to the towns of Locarno and Ascona, on the shores of Lago Maggiore, tend to overlook.

Modena, Italy

Modena, Italy

While it’s the Cathedral (Duomo), Torre Civica and Piazza Grande that interest UNESCO a visit to Modena wouldn’t be complete without purchasing some Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale and other regional products.

Modena is located on the south side of the Po Valley, in the Province of Modena and the Emilia-Romagna region of Italy.

Peter and Paul Cathedral

Peter and Paul Cathedral

Commissioned by Peter the Great, the Cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul is located inside the Peter and Paul Fortress in Saint Petersburg, Russia.

Built on Zayachy Island, between 1712 and 1733, the cathedral’s bell tower is the world’s tallest Orthodox bell tower. It also acts as a lightning rod protecting the cathedral.

The cathedral houses the remains of most of the Russian emperors and empresses from Peter the Great to Nicholas II; including Catherine the Great, Empress of Russia for 34 years.

The Historic Centre of Saint Petersburg and Related Groups of Monuments was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1991.

Boy Buddhist in Bodh Gaya

Boy Buddhist in Bodh Gaya

Young novice monk in maroon robe meditates beside candles in the afternoon sun at Mahabodhi Temple, India.

Bodh Gaya’s Mahabodhi Temple gained its UNESCO World Heritage Listing in 2002.

A religious site and place of pilgrimage, Bodh Gaya (in Bihar State) is where Gautama Buddha is said to have obtained enlightenment; after meditating under the Bodhi tree, for 49 days.

For Buddhists, Bodh Gaya is the most important of the main four pilgrimage sites related to the life of Gautama Buddha; something akin to Mecca for Muslims.

Bodh Gaya is about 12km from Gaya City, where overnight trains connect with Kolkata (Calcutta).

The best time to visit is November to March; with December and January considered the high season.

Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe

Victoria Falls

Victoria Falls in full flow; as seen from the Zimbabwean side of the Zambezi River, in southern Africa.

With a width of 1,708 metres and height of 108 metres Victoria Falls is the world’s largest sheet of falling water and forms the natural border between Zambia and Zimbabwe.

The spray from the falls can be seen for miles around and the constant roar of water crashing down a series of basalt gorges is truly thunderous; so much so that the Kololo tribe living in the area referred to this natural wonder as ‘Mosi-oa-Tunya’, or ‘Smoke that Thunders’.

When David Livingstone explored this part of Africa on 16th November, 1855, he chose to name the majestic falls in honour of the British Queen, Victoria.

Both names are inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List although there have been some concerns in UN corridors about the rapid rise of tourist development in a national park area near the Zambian town of Livingstone.

Most Western tourists used to visit from the Zimbabwean side, while staying as guests at the Victoria Falls and Elephant Hills hotels.

The falls can be reached from Livingstone in Zambia, or Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe.