Ten Must See Monuments

BootsnAll brings us another excellent list, with the intention of adding yet more destinations to our ever expanding “life lists”. This time it’s their selection of ten magnificent monuments, amazing structures from around the globe, that inspire us to travel thousands of miles just so we can take them in ourselves.

Some of the selections on the list are centuries old, such as the Nubian monuments found in southern Egypt or Stonehenge in England. Others are relatively recent in their construction, like the Washington Monument in D.C. or the Brandenburg Gate in Germany. These monuments were built for a variety of reasons, some religious in nature, like the Reclining Buddha in Thailand, others to commemorate a particular person or event, like the Monument to the Revolution in Mexico. Each of the places on the list include a photo and a nice description of why it deserves your consideration as a travel destination.

One thing that I like about this collection is that not everything on it is well known. For instance, the obvious choice for Egypt is the Great Pyramids or the Sphynx, but BootsnAll went with the temples located in Abu Simbal, far to the south, and far less visited by tourists.

For the traveler who has been everywhere and seen everything, perhaps this list will give you a few new ideas for future adventures. For those just setting out on their travels, this is a great list to start with.

Gadling + BootsnAll – Picks of the Week (3.20.09)

Another week of March is just about in the books, which means it’s time for Gadling’s Friday roundup of travel content from our friends at BootsnAll. What had us taking a second look this week? Read on below to check it out…

  • Long-term Volunteering – there are plenty of opportunities to donate your time while traveling. In fact spending a trip abroad donating your time is an increasingly popular option for many travelers. Laura-Claire Corson reminds us that a longer-term volunteer programs are yet another option. She’s got plenty of tips on how to finding and organizing a long-term volunteer opportunity.
  • Magnificent Monuments – do you remember the first time you laid eyes on your favorite monument? I remember gazing up at the Sagrada Familia and being totally awed by its design and scale. Deanna Hyland took a look at 10 “Magnificent Monuments” in her post earlier this week. There’s a few obvious choices like the Washington Monument (duh) and a few relatively unknown choices like the Hampi in India. Click through to see what else made the top 10.
  • Asian Faux Pas – this week Nellie Huang runs through a list of 7 of the Most Bizarre Asian Cultural Habits. Among the top choices were Japanese noodle slurping and spitting in China. Hey Nellie how about we add eating Durian to the list? Those things are pungent!
  • Rome 101 – sooner or later most travelers are going to find themselves in Rome. But with a wealth of great monuments (the Colosseum, the Vatican and the Forum all come to mind) it can be hard to know where to start and how to manage your time. Never fear, BootsnAll’s Italy blog has a some survival tips for first-time visitors. If you’re heading to the Boot any time soon it’s worth a look.
  • Hawaii Explodes! – our nation’s 50th state is bursting with volcanoes, both figuratively and literally. You simply cannot go to the Hawaiian islands and not be reminded of that fact – just look up and an active/extinct volcano is probably within eyesight. BootsnAll’s Hawaii blog has a rundown of some Hawaii’s most well-known volcanoes and offers a few thoughts on how to best experience these massive wonders of nature.

That’s it for this week! Stay tuned next Friday for more Gadling and BootsnAll Picks of the Week.

Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis, Missouri

I’ve been hanging around the outskirts and city limits of St. Louis the last few days and doing some touristy type things. Nothing wrong with that – I’ve never had a good opportunity to really poke around the town, even when I breezed through on my walking tour of America. There was a lot of land to cover so I had to keep it moving, but for the next few days it’s all about St. Louis.

One attraction any visitor might want to swing by is the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis. It’s a well-known monument not to mention it’s incredibly breath-taking. Building of the Cathedral started taking place in 1907 and was fully completed by 1988, when the last mosaic tiles were set in place. The mosaic collection is said to be the largest in the world created by 20 different artists and covering 83,000 square feet. The installation contains 41.5 million pieces of glass tesserae in over 7,000 various colors. So what happens is this – you look up at the ceiling and your jaw-drops. Plus, there’s that energy that just seems to flow through religious establishments that gets you.

Check it out.

Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis is located at 4431Lindell Blvd., St. Louis, MO 63108. Ph. (314) 533-2824.