International travel offers amazing opportunities to visit some of the top sites in the world. When planning a trip abroad, travel site Cheapflights.ca recommends these five iconic wonders.
The Eiffel Tower
When Gustave Eiffel proposed his lattice tower for the Paris World’s Fair, a group of architects and artisans compared the structure to a “gigantic black smokestack.” Constructed between 1887 and 1889, the iconic landmark was nearly dismantled in 1909, but Paris kept the 1,050-foot tower for its ability to enhance radio transmissions. More than 250 million people have visited the beloved symbol of Paris to enjoy the panoramic vistas of the French city.
The Egyptian Pyramids
Dating back more than 4,000 years, the Great Pyramid of Giza is all that remains of the original Seven Wonders of the World. The massive tomb was built for the Pharaoh Khufu. Casing stones once concealed millions of limestone blocks that workers transported from distant quarries. Visitors can enter the Robber’s Tunnel to view the only Egyptian pyramid known to have ascending and descending tunnels.
The Great Wall of China
Imagine the onslaught of a Mongol horde descending on the Middle Kingdom. To protect their dynasty, the Chinese built a series of fortifications over a span of 1,000 years. The barrier is accessible at various points along its 13,170-mile journey across an ever-changing landscape of mountains, desert and grasslands. When visiting the Great Wall, guests can view a wide array of indigenous plants and animals, including rare ginseng plants and the Giant Panda.
The Ruins of Machu Picchu
Machu Picchu guards the Urubamba Valley from its mountaintop perch. One of the New Seven Wonders of the World, this archaeological treasure dates from 1400 BCE. It displays the incredible masonry skills of the Incas. Abandoned during the period of Spanish conquest, Machu Picchu survived relatively intact because the conquistadors were unaware of its existence. The ancient citadel is a popular tourist destination for its grandeur and legendary history.
The Golden Gate Bridge
Spanning the entrance to San Francisco Bay, the Golden Gate Bridge is one of the most photographed spans in the world. Opening in 1937, the Art Deco-style bridge is emblazoned in International Orange, which complements the natural surroundings. As fog envelopes the city, the views of the bridge from the Presidio, Alcatraz and Coit Tower are mesmerizing. Cross the span at night to experience the incredible skyline of the City by the Bay.