World Heritage Day - [April 18]

By : Neha Dhyani

Updated : May 11, 2022, 11:23

"Heritage" this one word that symbolises cultures, traditions, hierarchical ideologies, objects, monuments, and activities being carried out for ages. World Heritage Day is celebrated on the 18th of April.

World Heritage Day - Overview

There are 3 types of heritage sites celebrated during World Heritage Day:

  1. Cultural Heritage Sites: inclusive of hundreds of historical buildings, paintings, sculptures, art, and town sites, archaeological work of art, and work of monumental importance. These are typically man-made and are considered the modern marvels of today. For example Taj Mahal, Lotus temple, etc.
  2. Natural Heritage Sites: these are inclusive of unprocessed, natural areas that show unique pieces of Earth's record of life and processes and provide an excellent example of ecological and biological evolutionary processes. The sites also contain natural phenomena that are rare, unique, superlative, or of outstanding beauty. For example The Western Ghats.
  3. Mixed Heritage Sites: consists of a mix of both cultural as well as natural heritage sites, which are present in the ratio of 1:3. In India, there is only one Mixed heritage site as mentioned below.

To celebrate the variety of heritage sites around the globe on World Heritage Day, International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) encourages celebrating the cultural heritage and a range of the world's monuments and heritage sites on the 18th of April every year.

World Heritage Day History

In 1982, ICOMOS proposed 18th April as the international day for Monuments and sites, this was followed by UNESCO's ( United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) adoption during its 22nd General Conference in 1983. The ICOMOS organization was created based on the principles in the Venice Charter, also known as the 1964 International Charter on the conservation and restoration of monuments and sites.

Since then ICOMOS provides a different theme annually to celebrate Cultural Heritage and educate the world about the same.

World Heritage Day Significance

The idea behind World Heritage Day was to provide a platform for people of diverse natures, livelihoods, and cultures to come together and share information about their history, traditions, monuments, and sites. It is a platform to promote co-habitation and preserve human heritage, diversity, and vulnerability of natural and man-made monuments and sites.

This year i.e. 2022 for World Heritage Day, the theme is entitled Heritage and Climate. Each country participating in the event had its own way of showcasing its solidarity with the cause. For instance, in Canada, a conference was held titled - "The Impacts of Climate Change on the Built Heritage" attended by the country's Environment minister along with the president of ICOMOS, Canada. Similarly, in China, a Scientific Seminar was conducted on "418 International Day of Monuments and Sites “Heritage & Climate” to deepen the understanding of climate change problems, in both the cultural and natural heritage of China.

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World Heritage Day - Heritage Sites in India

Did you know that there are 3691 protected monuments and sites in our country which include 40 world heritage properties under UNESCO and 50 sites and museums? Below is a list of some of them situated in India:

Type of Heritage Site

The Site

Location

CulturalTaj MahalAgra, UP
CulturalAjanta and Ellora CavesMaharashtra
CulturalHampiKarnataka
CulturalKonark Sun TempleOdisha
NaturalKaziranga National ParkAssam
NaturalGreat Himalayan National ParkHimachal Pradesh
NaturalWestern GhatsKerala, Tamil Nadu
NaturalNanda Devi and Valley of Flowers National ParksUttarakhand
MixedKhangchendzonga National ParkSikkim

☛ Also Read: Daily Current Affairs

Today the empty passageways of some of the greatest monumental sites which is one of the greatest assets of a country, narrate a grey story of the fate that has occurred. Due to the lockdown induced by the pandemic, these heritage sites have replaced the frenetic liveliness that surrounds them with a strange calmness. Nonetheless in order to promote diversity and encourage awareness about our heritage we celebrate World Heritage Day on the 18th of April every year.

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FAQs on World Heritage Day

Q.1. With regard to World Heritage Day, name India's First and only "Mixed" World Heritage Site.

With regard to World Heritage Day, Khangchendzonga National Park, Sikkim is India's First and only "Mixed" World Heritage Site.

Q.2. Which was the First World Heritage Site in India, With regard to World Heritage Day?

With regard to World Heritage Day, The first World Heritage Site were the Ajanta - Ellora Caves, Agra Fort, and the Taj Mahal.

Q.3. What was the theme for the World Heritage Day Celebrated in 2022?

The theme for the World Heritage Day Celebrated in 2022 is entitled Heritage and Climate.

Q.4. What does ICOMOS do for World Heritage Day?

ICOMOS is a global non-governmental organization associated with UNESCO, that is located in Paris, France, to promote the conservation, protection, use, and enhancement of monuments, building complexes, and sites and promotes the World Heritage Day celebrations worldwide every year.

Q.5. With regard to World Heritage Day, which site was included in the UNESCO's World Heritage list (2009)?

With regard to World Heritage Day, Kalka-Shimla Railway was included in the World Heritage list this year. It is a 96-km long, single-track working rail link built in the mid-19th century to provide a service to the highland town of Shimla.