A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a location that is selected by a special committee for its cultural or natural significance. The committee was established in 1972 and nominated sites must meet a specific set of criteria. There are over 930 World Heritage Sites on Earth and the majority of these (about 720) are sites of cultural significance. The idea behind the World Heritage Sites is to protect these important locations for generations to come. A site can also receive funding from the organization to help with preserving and protecting the area. A site can lose its status if it is not managed or protected properly, such as a natural site being damaged by logging. As of 2011 there have only been two sites removed from the list. Let’s take a look at the country with the most World Heritage Sites.
The country with the most World Heritage Sites
Italy is the country with the most UNESCO World Heritage Sites. As of November 2011, the country has a total of 47 sites. 3 of these sites are shared with other countries. The first site in Italy was the Rock Drawings in Valcamonica that were listed in 1979 and they were the 94th site listed by UNESCO. They are one of the largest collections of ancient rock drawings in the world.
The country with the second most number of World Heritage sites is Spain (43) and the third most is China (41). They are the only other countries with over 40 World Heritage Sites.