UNESCO World Heritage Sites are places of natural beauty and historical significance that are chosen by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) for their outstanding universal value. Currently, there are 1,054 World Heritage Sites in 167 countries, and more are being added all the time. Among those 1,054 sites, 897 cultural, 218 natural, and 39 mixed properties. Let’s get to know details about world heritage sites in Ukraine.
What are the Seven UNESCO World Heritage sites in Ukraine?
Ukraine has seven UNESCO World Heritage Sites. These are treasures of world culture and history and include ancient monasteries, fortresses, and natural wonders.
Kyiv: Saint-Sophia Cathedral and Related Monastic Buildings, Kyiv Pechersk Lavra
Constructed in the 11th century, St. Sophia Cathedral is a superlative example of Byzantine architecture and one of Ukraine’s most recognized landmarks. It was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1990 for being an outstanding architectural masterpiece that profoundly marked the history and culture not only of Kyiv but substantially transformed Ukraine. The cathedral is located in the midst of a complex of monastic buildings constructed in the 17th and 18th centuries in Ukrainian Baroque style.
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The Kyiv Pechersk Lavra is a world-renowned monastic ensemble that has been in operation since the 11th century. Throughout its history, the lavra has undergone many changes and continued to grow in size and stature. Today, it is a major tourist attraction in Kyiv and remains an important spiritual center for Eastern Orthodox Christians. The Church of the Saviour at Berestove, adjacent to the Lavra, was added to the site in 2005 as part of an effort to restore and preserve cultural heritage sites.
Lviv – the Ensemble of the Historic Centre
Lviv, one of the most beautiful and historically significant cities in Europe, is located in western Ukraine. Lviv’s architecture and urban planning are based on a unique mixture of Gothic, Renaissance, and Baroque styles. The Historic Centre of Lviv, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is one of the best-preserved medieval city centers in Europe.
The city has a long and complex history, shaped by the interactions of the different communities that have lived there over the centuries. These include various Christian groups, Muslims, and Jews, all of which have contributed to the city’s unique character. Further, the architecture in the city reflects a blend of Eastern European and Italian/German influences. It is a prime example of a residence of the Ukrainian gentry and was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1998.
Struve Geodetic Arc
The Struve Geodetic Arc that stretches 2,820 kilometers (1,750 mi) from Hammerfest, Norway, to the Black Sea through Ukraine is one of the longest triangulation networks in the world. Established by a German astronomer Friedrich Georg Wilhelm von Struve, between 1816 and 1855. The arc was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2005.
Virgin Beech Forests of the Carpathians
The virgin beech forests of the Carpathians are among the last surviving beech forests on earth. Their collection of ancient beeches is located in Zakarpattia Oblast in western Ukraine. The virgin beech forests have been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2007. This site showcases the postglacial expansion process of European beech from a few isolated refuge areas in the Alps, Carpathians, Dinarides, Mediterranean, and the Pyrenees. The temperate forests on this site provide an excellent example of how species can recolonize and spread following a mass extinction event.
Residence of Bukovinian and Dalmatian Metropolitans
The Residence of Bukovinian and Dalmatian Metropolitans was constructed in the late 19th century for the Eastern Orthodox metropolitan bishop, who resided in the region while it was under the rule of Austria-Hungary.
The complex, designed by Czech architect Josef Hlávka, is built in the historicist style and features elements of Byzantine, Gothic, and Baroque architecture. It was used as the bishop’s residence until World War II. Later it was transferred to Chernivtsi University in 1955. UNESCO declared Residence of Bukovinian and Dalmatian Metropolitans a world heritage Site in 2011.
Ancient City of Tauric Chersonese and its Chora
The city dates back to the 5th century BCE when it was founded by Dorian Greeks on the coast of the Black Sea. In the following centuries, it was home to Greek, Roman, and Byzantine communities in the Black Sea region. However, by the end of 15th century, the place was abandoned. This site was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2013.
Wooden Tserkvas of the Carpathian Region in Poland and Ukraine
The wooden churches of the Carpathian Region are part of one of the most historic religious traditions in Europe. This property includes 16 wooden churches in the Carpathians, eight of which are in Ukraine. The churches in this area were built between the 16th and 19th centuries by the Greek Catholic faiths and the communities of Eastern Orthodox. Orthodox ecclesiastical traditions combined with local influences the design. UNESCO declared it as a world heritage site in 2013.
These sites are a testament to the country’s rich history and cultural diversity and attract tourists from all over the world. Whether you’re interested in history, nature, or architecture, there’s something for everyone in Ukraine’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Source: United News of Bangladesh