We live in a world that is surrounded by beautiful creations that formed over time. And to some people, they are an inspiration to create man-made beauties. That’s why architecture is not just concrete and blocks, it is an art that is “appreciated by many” but “perfected by” a previous few. And those few ones who perfected it, have gifted to this world some awe-inspiring buildings. Let’s see 10 of them.
“Taj Mahal” translates to “Crown of the Palaces.” Found in the city of Agra, the ground was broken in 1632. Construction took 21 years. The cost to build it was 32 million rupees or the equivalent of 8 hundred million dollars at that time.
King Ludwig II of Bavaria had a very vivid imagination, which he dared to turn it into real-life magical castles. One of those castles is Neuschwanstein Castle, which originally translates as New Swan Stone castle and is located in Bavaria, Germany. He paid for it from his own personal fortune, but he never got to see it fully constructed, as King Ludwig II died in 1886, and the castle was finalized in 1892.
Taking nearly 600 years to be fully finished, the Milan Cathedral Duomo was completed in 1965. The first basilica was constructed in 355 but was terribly damaged in a fire in 1075. This cathedral replaced it and is the fourth largest church on the planet. It is centrally located in Lombardy. Tourists take note that all the local streets either circle or originate from this site.
One of the most visited places in France, the Mont Saint-Michel welcomes approximately 2.5 million guests a year. It is found amidst a unique representation of the feudal system. Society’s lowest level is represented by the homes of the farmers and fishermen. The monastery and abbey represent God. The castle has survived the Hundred Years’ War. King Louis XI later converted it to a prison. It is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Roughly 50 people still live there.
Striking an imposing and impressive figure on the edge of the River Danube in the heart of Budapest, Hungary’s Parliament building, built in 1906, is one of the finest examples of the Gothic Revival and Renaissance Revival architecture in the world today. It took 100,000 workers, 40 million bricks, 88 pounds of gold and 500,000 assorted precious stones, and almost two decades to build.
The Louvre Palace is located on the Right Bank, the Seine in Paris. Established in 1202 as a medieval fortress, it is between the olden church of Saint-Germain l’Auxerrois and the beautiful Tuileries Gardens. In the 1300s Charles V converted it into a palace. It was next used as the Paris residence of the later kings of France. In 1793 it was turned into a museum and opened to the public.
Machi Picchu is undoubtedly the most famous Inca archaeological site on the planet. It was erected in 1450 but totally abandoned in 1550 because of the Spanish Conquest. This is also a popular UNESCO World Heritage Site. It includes the well-known ritual stone known as Intihuatana, the Temple of the Sun, and the Room of the Three Windows. It was restored in the 1980s.
Its construction was initiated in 1555 by none other than the infamous Ivan the Terrible. First known as the Trinity Church, it included a total of eight churches surrounding a ninth with a tenth one added later. Its design is unique with domes that some have previously described as “a bonfire rising to the sky.”
The temple complex Angkor Wat (“City of Temples”) was constructed circa 1125. Located in Cambodia it is one of the planet’s biggest religious monuments. The Khmer Empire (eighth to 15th centuries CE) intended it to be a Hindu temple that was specifically dedicated to the god Vishnu. The stone temple’s architecture is a distinctive blend of both galleried temple and temple-mountain styles (both were relatively new at that time.)
Situated in Chambord, Loir-et-Cher, France, is one of the most recognizable châteaux on the planet. This is mainly due to its quite distinctive architecture. It combines classical Renaissance structures with traditional French medieval forms. Construction went on for 28 years. The building was never actually completed. It was originally a hunting lodge for King Francis I. Reportedly designed by Italian architect Domenico da Cortona, Leonardo da Vinci was rumored to be involved too.