The cultural heritage of a country is a spectacular memorandum of its glorious past. It is that precious inheritance which should be preserved to be passed on from generations to generations. There might be a number of architectural prodigies in a country but only a few of them hold universal importance. These are the cultural heritages which are so exceptional that the protection of these sites becomes the concern of the entire mankind. Such manifestations of history have been categorized as the World Heritage Sites by UNESCO and their preservation is of utmost importance to these international bodies. At present, 137 nations are a part of this resolution and India is one of them. There are 32 such properties in the country which have been touted as the World Heritage Sites by the UNESCO. Out of them 25 are cultural heritages while 7 are the natural ones.
The fact that these places have been chosen as World Heritage Sites justifies their universal importance. Yet there are some of them which, on the basis of their popularity and historical importance, can be considered to be the top ten. So today, I am going to write about ten such places, which I think, deserve to be the best ones from the lot! And the count begins here:
List of Top 10 World Heritage Sites in India
1. Taj Mahal
One of the Seven Wonders of the World, Taj Mahal is indeed, the most important world heritage site in India. The spellbinding magnificence of this monument needs no explanation.
2. Qutub Minar
Location: New Delhi
Located in the capital city, Qutub Minar is the tall architectural beauty that adorns Delhi with its magnificence. It is the second tallest Minar in the country.
3. Sun Temple
Also known as the Black Pagoda, Sun temple is not only a notable architecture but is also one of the most important temples of the South. It belongs to the 13th century and its unique shape of a gigantic chariot accentuates its importance as a heritage site.
Location: Madhya Pradesh
These monuments in the state of Madhya Pradesh are fine denotations of the Chandela Dynasty that existed before the invasion of the Mughals. The sculptural beauty which boldly speaks of the relevance of sensuality makes these monuments a notable piece of the history of India.
Spread over an area of 12 acres, the Mahabodhi Temple complex is a pilgrimage site of the Buddhists. Lord Buddha attained enlightenment at this very place and thus, it is exceptionally important for the Buddhist religion.
Located in the eastern state of Assam, the Kaziranga National Park was deemed as a world heritage site for its exceptional natural environment. It houses around two-thirds of the world’s Great One-horned Rhinoceroses.
7. Chola Temple
Location: Tamil Nadu
Built during the Chola rule, the great living Chola temples of Thanjavur inspired the entire South-east Asia with their grandeur and spectacular designs. These temples have been regarded as the pioneer of building art in south India.
8. Ajanta Caves
As the unique representations of the Buddhist religion, 31 rock-cut caves have been deemed as the world heritage site in the state of Maharashtra. These magnificent Buddhist caves belong to the 2nd century BC.
Location: West Bengal, Himachal Pradesh, Tamil Nadu
The Mountain Railways of India include the Darjeeling-Himalayan Railway (West Bengal), the Nilgiri Mountain Railways (Tamil Nadu) and the Kalka Shimla Railway (Himachal Pradesh). These railways are an outstanding example of prodigal engineering skills used to combat the problem establishing a rail link in the hills.
10. Fatehpur Sikri
The city of victory, Fatehpur Sikri was built during the glorious reign of the Mughals. It was the luxurious capital of the iconic Mughal Empire.
The architectural heritage of India is so captivating that it is impossible to choose a few. Everyone might have their own favorites! If you find some other site to be more worthy of being included in the list, please leave your suggestions below.
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