Exploring the Seven Wonders of the World with HOPE
In a world where travel has been almost impossible for the last 18 months, it has left most of us yearning to explore the world after having it stolen from our grasp by the COVID-19 pandemic. So, to satisfy that, we’re going to take you on a virtual trip to the Seven Wonders of the New World!
First up, we’re stopping off in China with the Great Wall of China! The Great Wall of China is one of the biggest man-made structures in the history of the world. Construction of the wall began as early as the 7th Century BC and continued for over 2,000 years! It was originally used as a military defence base against the nomads of Ancient China and spans 8,850km, stretching from Northern China to South Mongolia. Now, it is considered a historical monument and used as a tourist destination for those visiting China! Our second stop is the Chichén Itzá, Mexico. Chichén Itzá was a large Mayan city of the Terminal Classic period and it is situated on the Yucatán Peninsular. What once stood as the Chichén Itzá is no longer, apart from a few remaining structures. These structures include El Castillo, a temple dedicated to Kukulklan, the Plumed Serpent (a big snake with feathers!), because every year during Spring and Autumn equinox the sun casts a shadow of a slithering snake on the temple steps! Would you like to go and see the slippery serpents of Chichén Itzá? Now arriving at…Petra, Jordan! This is Petra! It’s an ancient city situated in Jordan, and it was built in 312 BC! Petra was built in a basin situated in the mountains that run from the Dead Sea to the Gulf of Aqabar. Did you know that the Dead Sea is so full of salt that you can float in it? Petra is also known as the Rose City because of its colour! The stone that the city’s structures were carved out of are a light reddish pink colour, just like a rose! The city’s most famous structure is a temple named Al-Khazneh and it is one of the seven wonders of the world! The fourth stop on our trip is Machu Picchu. Machu Picchu is a 15th Century Inca site located in Cuzco, Peru! It was built and lived in by the Inca people between 1200 and 1450 A.D. Inca was a South American Empire from the Peruvian Andes; they began as a mountain tribe and eventually formed into a functioning society, run by one ruler named The Inca! Machu Picchu is so high up in the mountains that it wasn’t fully discovered until 1911 by Yale University student, Hiram Bingham. It seems the Inca’s were very into astronomy; as well as houses and temples, they also built an observatory so they could look at the stars! We will now be landing in…Brazil! You may recognise this wonder, this is Christ The Redeemer. It’s one of the most famous and recognisable landmarks in the world! The statue is situated on Mount Corcovado in the city of Rio, Brazil. Although it may seem like this structure is old, Christ The Redeemer was only built about 100 years ago! It took five years to build and stands at a humungous 38 metres from the base to the top of his head. If you look closely at his right thumb…you will see its very damaged, this is because it got struck by lightning during a storm in 2014. Here we are, nearly 6,000 miles away in Rome, Italy at the Colosseum! The Colosseum is a super old structure that was built between 72 A.D. and 80 A.D. under Emperor Vespasian in Ancient Rome. Emperor Vespasian ruled the Roman Empire for 27 years! In ancient Roman times, that was considered a long time! The Colosseum is an amphitheatre built by thousands of slaves, it is the largest amphitheatre in the world, standing at 50 metres high — that is almost the same height as the Leaning Tower of Pisa! It could seat up to 50,000 people to watch ancient Roman sports, such as gladiator battles and animal hunting. Unfortunately, around two-thirds of the Colosseum has been destroyed over time (mainly due to vandalism and extreme weather), but the remaining third still stands as one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world! Last but definitely not least, the Taj Mahal! We are in in Agra, North India at the Taj Mahal. The structure was built in 1632 by a ruler named Shah Jahan as a monument and final resting place for his wife, Mumtaz Mahal. As you can see, the outside of the Taj Mahal is completely covered in white marble. Embedded into the white marble are different coloured gemstones, such as the blue lapis lazuli, green jade, crystal, turquoise, and purple amethyst! All these gemstones are formed to make flowers and other beautiful floral designs. If you go inside the Taj Mahal, you will see monuments dedicated to Shah Jahan and Mumtaz Mahal and below these monuments are the tombs of Jahan and Mahal themselves!
And here we are, back on the internet! We hope you enjoyed your trip around the world with HOPE and we hope to see you again very soon! If you have any suggestions on where to go next, follow our Instagram and DM us or comment below and let us know where you’d like to go!
By: Amber Howells