New 7 Wonders of the World Runner Ups: Angkor Wat – Eiffel Tower – Stonehenge

January 12, 2012 by  

In the summer of 2007, more than 90 million people cast their votes to determine which architectural marvels in the world deserved to be one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. There were a total of twenty-one landmarks vying for that title.

Of the Seven Ancient Wonders of the World, only the Great Pyramids in Giza, Egypt still stand. The pyramids were given an automatic spot after infuriated Egyptian officials said it was a disgrace to have to compete for something that had belonged to their country for so long. I agree!  We saw them in 2007.

It is our goal to see all twenty-one landmarks. Also, Chris and I have collectively seen a lot of the twenty-one, however, not together. So the rule is, we go back and see all of them together!

Chichen Itza

New 7 Wonders of the World  we’ve been to:

The Great Wall

#1 Chichen Itza, Mexico – 2005
#2 Great Wall of China – 2010

New 7 Wonders of the World  Runner Ups we’ve been to:

#9  Statue of Liberty, New York – 2005
#10 Sydney Opera House, Australia – 2005
#11 Hagia Sophia, Istanbul – 2007
#12 Acropolis, Athens – 2007

#13 Angkor Wat, Cambodia – 2010 – It is the world’s largest religious monument covering 200 hectares and is an architectural masterpiece of fine proportions and rich detail of Kmer construction. It consists of 600 meters of bas relief & 2000 apsaras (celestial dancers).  The temple is a representation of Mount Meru, the home of the gods: the central quincunx of towers symbolizes the five peaks of the mountain, and the walls and moat the surrounding mountain ranges and ocean. There are over 80 temples in the area and one of them is where Tomb Raiders was filmed. We saw 9 of them and I wished I had spent more time here!

Angkor Wat

Eiffel Tower

#14 Eiffel Tower, Paris – 2010 – On our way home from our Africa trip we stopped in Paris for 3 days. Unfortunately they were on strike (again) so I didn’t get to go to Versailles. We did have a very nice time walking in the city and taking the “hop on, hop off” boat on the Seine.  The Eiffel Tower  was named after one the most influential people in its construction, a contractor, engineer, architect and showman by the name of Gustave Eiffel. It took around two years and two months to build and was completed on March 31, 1889. You can see around 59 kilometers or around 37 miles from the top of the Eiffel Tower. It is made of 2.5 million rivets, 15,000 pieces of iron and 40 tons of paint and is approximately 984-990 feet tall/high (depending on temperature).

#15 Stonehenge, England – 2011 – This was our last stop on our Ireland, Scotland, UK and Belgium trip in the fall. Stonehenge (meaning hanging stones) is as old as the Pyramids (5000 yrs) and older than the Acropolis and Colosseum (both also Runner Ups).  Called a stone circle “built by giants” it is different from others in England. (There are over 900 stone circles in the British Isles) It is believed that more than 30 million hours of labor were spent in the construction work. It has cross-pieces spanning the vertical monoliths and the only one with smooth, uniform stones – each one designed to calculate the movement of the sun, moon and stars. The monoliths were built out of sandstone, weigh about 35 tons, and came from 20 miles away. The shorter “bluestones” came from  Wales which is 240 miles away. The question is, “How did they get there? And why didn’t they use the stones that were nearby?”