Menorca biosphere reserve

Designated: 1993

Description

The main characteristic of the Menorca Biosphere Reserve is the diversity characteristic of nearly all Mediterranean island ecosystems. The most notable habitats are the gullies, caves, wetlands made up of ponds, lagoons and marshes, dune systems, coasts and islets Some 220 species of birds, and 1000 species of plants (60 of which are endemic) have been recorded.

Website references

UNESCO site: Menorca

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Postcard in my collection

spain-menorca-biosphere.web

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Caliphate City of Medina Azahara

Brief description

The Caliphate city of Medina Azahara is an archaeological site of a city built in the mid-10th century CE by the Umayyad dynasty as the seat of the Caliphate of Cordoba. After prospering for several years, it was laid to waste during the civil war that put an end to the Caliphate in 1009-10. The remains of the city were forgotten for almost 1,000 years until their rediscovery in the early 20th century. This complete urban ensemble features infrastructure such as roads, bridges, water systems, buildings, decorative elements and everyday objects. It provides in-depth knowledge of the now vanished Western Islamic civilization of Al-Andalus, at the height of its splendour.

Unesco WHS list ref:  1560

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From my collection

spain-madinat-al-zahara-gran-portico-webThanks to Inigo for lovely cards from this site.

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Antequera Dolmens Site

Brief description

Located at the heart of Andalusia in southern Spain, the site comprises three megalithic monuments: the Menga and Viera dolmens and the Tolos of El Romeral, and two natural monuments: the Peña de los Enamorados and El Torcal mountainous formations, which are landmarks within the property. Built during the Neolithic and Bronze Age out of large stone blocks, these monuments form chambers with lintelled roofs or false cupolas. These three tombs buried beneath their original earth tumuli, are one of the most remarkable architectural works of European prehistory and one of the most important examples of European Megalithism.

Unesco WHS list ref:  1501

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From my collection

spain-antequera-dolmens

Thankyou Inigo for this card, which shows inside the Viera dolmen.

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Heritage of Mercury. Almadén and Idrija

Brief description

The property includes the mining sites of Almadén (Spain), where mercury (quicksilver) has been extracted since antiquity, and Idrija (Slovenia), where mercury was first found in AD1490. The Spanish property includes buildings relating to its mining history, including Retamar Castle, religious buildings and traditional dwellings. The site in Idrija notably features mercury stores and infrastructure, as well as miners’ living quarters, and a miners’ theatre. The sites bear testimony to the intercontinental trade in mercury which generated important exchanges between Europe and America over the centuries. Together they represent the two largest mercury mines in the world, operational until recent times.

Unesco WHS list ref: 1313

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From my collection

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Alhambra, Generalife and Albayzín, Granada

Brief description

Rising above the modern lower town, the Alhambra and the Albaycín, situated on two adjacent hills, form the medieval part of Granada. To the east of the Alhambra fortress and residence are the magnificent gardens of the Generalife, the former rural residence of the emirs who ruled this part of Spain in the 13th and 14th centuries. The residential district of the Albaycín is a rich repository of Moorish vernacular architecture, into which the traditional Andalusian architecture blends harmoniously.

Unesco WHS list ref:  314

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From my collection

spain-granada-alhambra

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Burgos Cathedral

Brief description

Our Lady of Burgos was begun in the 13th century at the same time as the great cathedrals of the Ile-de-France and was completed in the 15th and 16th centuries. The entire history of Gothic art is summed up in its superb architecture and its unique collection of works of art, including paintings, choir stalls, reredos, tombs and stained-glass windows.

Unesco WHS list ref:  316

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From my collection

spain-burgos

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Historic Centre of Cordoba

Brief description

Cordoba’s period of greatest glory began in the 8th century after the Moorish conquest, when some 300 mosques and innumerable palaces and public buildings were built to rival the splendours of Constantinople, Damascus and Baghdad. In the 13th century, under Ferdinand III, the Saint, Cordoba’s Great Mosque was turned into a cathedral and new defensive structures, particularly the Alcázar de los Reyes Cristianos and the Torre Fortaleza de la Calahorra, were erected.

Unesco WHS list ref:  313

I have never visited this site.

From my collection

spain-cordoba-mezquita

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