Tag Archives: europa

Kernavฤ— Archaeological Site (Cultural Reserve of Kernavฤ—)

The Kernavฤ— Archaeological site, about 35 km north-west of Vilnius in eastern Lithuania, represents an exceptional testimony to some 10 millennia of human settlements in this region. Situated in the valley of the River Neris, the site is a complex ensemble of archaeological properties, encompassing the town of Kernavฤ—, forts, some unfortified settlements, burial sites and other archaeological, historical and cultural monuments from the late Palaeolithic Period to the Middle Ages. The site of 194,4 ha has preserved the traces of ancient land-use, as well as remains of five impressive hill forts, part of an exceptionally large defence system. Kernavฤ— was an important feudal town in the Middle Ages. The town was destroyed by the Teutonic Order in the late 14th century, however the site remained in use until modern times.

Since 2004 it is a Unesco site.

Thanks to Anastasia for the postcard.

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University and Historic Precinct of Alcalรก de Henares

Founded by Cardinal Jimรฉnez de Cisneros in the early 16th century, Alcalรก de Henares was the world’s first planned university city. It was the original model for the Civitas Dei (City of God), the ideal urban community which Spanish missionaries brought to the Americas. It also served as a model for universities in Europe and elsewhere.

Since 1998 it is a Unesco site.

Thanks to Jordi for the postcard.

Pyrรฉnรฉes – Mont Perdu

This outstanding mountain landscape, which spans the contemporary national borders of France and Spain, is centred around the peak of Mount Perdu, a calcareous massif that rises to 3,352 m. The site, with a total area of 30,639 ha, includes two of Europe’s largest and deepest canyons on the Spanish side and three major cirque walls on the more abrupt northern slopes with France, classic presentations of these geological landforms. The site is also a pastoral landscape reflecting an agricultural way of life that was once widespread in the upland regions of Europe but now survives only in this part of the Pyrรฉnรฉes. Thus it provides exceptional insights into past European society through its landscape of villages, farms, fields, upland pastures and mountain roads.

Since 1997 it is a Unesco site.

Thanks to Jordi for the postcard.

Messel Pit Fossil Site

Messel Pit is the richest site in the world for understanding the living environment of the Eocene, between 57 million and 36 million years ago. In particular, it provides unique information about the early stages of the evolution of mammals and includes exceptionally well-preserved mammal fossils, ranging from fully articulated skeletons to the contents of stomachs of animals of this period.

Since 2010 it is a Unesco site.

Thanks to Chiara for the postcard.

Decorated Cave of Pont dโ€™Arc, known as Grotte Chauvet-Pont dโ€™Arc, Ardรจche

Located in a limestone plateau of the Ardรจche River in southern France, the property contains the earliest-known and best-preserved figurative drawings in the world, dating back as early as the Aurignacian period (30,000โ€“32,000ย BP), making it an exceptional testimony of prehistoric art. The cave was closed off by a rock fall approximately 20,000 years BP and remained sealed until its discovery in 1994, which helped to keep it in pristine condition. Over 1,000 images have so far been inventoried on its walls, combining a variety of anthropomorphic and animal motifs. Of exceptional aesthetic quality, they demonstrate a range of techniques including the skilful use of shading, combinations of paint and engraving, anatomical precision, three-dimensionality and movement. They include several dangerous animal species difficult to observe at that time, such as mammoth, bear, cave lion, rhino, bison and auroch, as well as 4,000 inventoried remains of prehistoric fauna and a variety of human footprints.

Since 2014 it is a Unesco site.

Thanks to Gosia for the postcard.