Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Bulgaria, Nessebar, UNESCO. World Heritage Sites.

UNESCO / United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, is to be admired for its work on the nomination of World Heritage Sites of outstanding cultural or natural importance.

On 16 November 1972, almost forty years ago, it founded the Programme for the Protection of World Culture and Natural Heritage and the 962 sites include cities, towns, buildings, monuments, lakes, parks, deserts, forests and mountains.

Italy has the most sites, with 47. Sites can also receive funding if necessary.

The diversity of places ranges from Uluru in Australia, mountain railways of India, monuments, the Giza Pyramids in Egypt and Chichen Itza in Mexico, the Yellowstone National Park and Mount Kenya Park to name but a few.
Nessebar, on a small, rocky peninsula in Bulgaria, has been a World Heritage Site since 1983, and numerous objects from past civilizations  have been unearthed here, including Thracian, Greek, Roman, Turkish, Slavic, Byzantine and Bulgarian artefacts..

Bronze Age objects, remains of a 6th-century Roman wall, an agora, theatre, and the Temple of Apollo are all to be found in this lovely little town. Nessebar also has timbered houses dating back to the 19th century which overhang the  cobbled streets.

Nessebar must have been astonishingly religious as there are remains of beautiful mediaeval churches on every street.

On the outside they are a mixture of stone and brick, in various geometrical patterns, finished off with ceramics.  Some churches still have remarkable frescos inside.

Nothing however is ever quite rosy in this world, and Wikipedia is on the case. Apparently there have been a number of illegal alterations on 19th century structures, and some new buildings  in violation of the Cultural Heritage Law.