Architectural Wonders of the Twelfth (12th) Century

       This particular century features some of the world’s most famous churches as well as other iconic structures around the world. Considering that these structure are almost 1,000 years old, it is remarkable that they still exist in such good condition.
 
         1. Alcazar, Segovia, Spain (1120) — This fairy-tale-like castle was one of the models used for the construction of Cinderella’s castle in Disneyland. Its towers and turrets dominate the western ridge of the city and overlook a vast countryside.
 
         2. Palace of Holyroodhouse, Edinburgh, Scotland (1128) — Anchoring one end of the city’s Royal Mile, this grand palace was once the residence of Mary, Queen of Scots, rival to the throne of England, of Queen Elizabeth I.
 
         3. Angkor Wat, Siem Reap, Cambodia (1130?) — This incredible complex of structures was once part of a royal city which was, until fairly recently, overtaken by the jungle.
 
         4. St Francis Cathedral, Assisi, Italy (1140) — This beautiful church, built to commemorate the life of the father of the Franciscan Order of monks, displays gorgeous murals depicting his life and the life of Christ.
 
         5. Stephansdom, Vienna, Austria (1147) — One of Austria’s most beloved structures, this church dominates a popular square in the center of the Altstadt. Its distinctive tiled roof and tower can be seen from all over the city.
 
         6. Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris, France (1163) — This iconic building, home to Victor Hugo’s famous “hunchback” is THE classic Gothic cathedral, with its flying buttresses and Rose Window.
 
         7. Leaning Tower of Pisa, Italy (1173) — One of the most photographed and well-known structures in the world, the leaning tower is only part of the group of structures which occupy the Piazza dei Miracoli in this Tuscan town.
 
         8. Saladin’s Citadel, Cairo, Egypt (1176) — Built to withstand the periodic attacks of the Crusaders, this impressive complex dominates the skyline of Egypt’s capital city.
 
         9. Alcazar, Seville, Spain (1181) — This fortified royal palace impresses visitors with its intricate architecture, while its calm and cooling gardens offer respite from the oppressively hot summers in southern Spain.
 
         10. Koutoubia Mosque, Marrakech, Morocco (1184) — This large structure dominates the mysterious and important city of Marrakech.
 
         11. Chartres Cathedral, Chartres, France (1195) — Used as a model for the construction of Gothic churches all over Europe, this religious building dominates the skyline of the region and makes a popular day excursion from Paris.
 
         12. Kilkenny Castle, Kilkenny, Ireland (1195) — Here is one of the most impressive castles in Ireland. The city of Kilkenny is an extremely popular destination for tourists to this friendly nation.

About gmazeman

Retired Science Teacher Currently Athletic Director at Johnston High School Travel is my passion!
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