We all know that mankind has built some fantastic buildings through the ages. There are particular styles and functions that each wonder has been made according to, but they all share some dynamic power that attracts us to them again and again. But did you known that many of the most impressive buildings are actually under-appreciated? These are 7 of the most beautiful and enigmatic buildings you are ever likely to see.
Click on images to enlarge
1. Great Mosque of Djenné (Mali)
You probably have never seen anything like this century old UNESCO World Heritage building, located in Mali. That it’s closed to tourists is a great shame, though we can all enjoy its outward appearance, remarkable thanks to its status as the world’s largest mud-brick building in the whole world.
2. Chand Baori (India)
Experts are still unsure when this amazing inverted-pyramid structure was built. Known as Chand Baori, this intricate, symmetrical building lies in the small, unremarkable village of Abhaneri in India. It’s known to be one of the oldest and deepest staircases in the world. There are 3,500 steps on three of the interior walls, and they lead to a green pool at the bottom. It's rather like the world’s most sensational well.
3. Parliamentary Palace (Romania)
Not all Soviet-era architecture was a stain on the senses. After all, this parliament building in Romania was built during the Cold War, when Romania was cut off from the world along with the rest of poverty-stricken Eastern Europe. So, while the rest of the country struggled, the capital was adorned with the world’s biggest and priciest parliament. It contains 12 stories above and eight below, filled with over 3,000 rooms.
4. Stari Most 'The Old Bridge' (Bosnia-Herzegovina)
When the Bosnian war of 1992-1995 destroyed the ancient Mostar bridge, something special was lost to the world. So that’s why the people rebuilt it! By 2005 the new bridge became a UNESCO World Heritage site in its own right. If you like, you can sample the local custom of bungee jumping into the Neretva River below. Though be warned, the river is icy cold for most of the year.
5. Kumbhalgarh Fort (India)
The fort of Kumbhalgarh is defended by a vast wall which winds some 22 miles and stands around 25 feet high. It is said to have taken 100 years to build it during the 15th and 16th Centuries. This wall, known as the ‘Guardian of Death’ was never breached or even damaged by enemies.
6. Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque (Iran)
There are some spectacular mosques in the world, but you probably have not heard of this unlikely masterpiece. Built between 1602 and 1619, this Safavid-Iranian wonder has neither minarets nor courtyards, because it was designed for the private use of the many women who lived within the Shah’s harem.
7. Derawar Fort (Pakistan)
Have you ever seen this incredible fort before? It’s said that even the locals around Derawar are not very interested or aware of this 18th Century square-shaped giant. Its walls rise 100 feet above the ground, and its circumference extends to 5,000 feet.