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Interesting facts about famous landmarks you might not have known

Written by:
Yehor Kryvous
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The development of modern architecture makes countries around the world compete with each other to create the most impressive buildings that stand out from the rest, not just to demonstrate economic or architectural superiority, but also to attract tourists and investors, much like how a standout feature like a Wanted Win no deposit bonus might draw players to an online casino. These built objects can be used as symbols of the country or, as they are usually called, landmarks. On this occasion, I have gathered for you interesting facts about the most famous buildings from around the world. Let's go!

Statue of Liberty

A giant statue located in New York City that has become a welcoming symbol for immigrants or Native Americans returning to their hometown. This bronze statue was originally named ‘Liberty Lighting the World’, but it became better known as the Statue of Liberty or (in English) Statue of Liberty. It was unveiled on 28 October 1886. Here are other interesting facts about the iconic statue from the US:

   - The Statue of Liberty is actually a birthday present given by France to the United States to commemorate the centennial of Uncle Sam's land and is also a symbol of friendly relations between the two countries.

   - The Statue of Liberty depicts a female figure named Libertas, named after the Roman goddess of liberty.

   - This statue holds a torch and a plaque with the date of the US declaration of independence, 4 July 1776.

   - The Statue of Liberty is 93 metres high. To reach the peak, visitors must climb 354 steps.

   - Thanks to the 25 windows inside the crown of this statue, visitors can see a panoramic view of New York City.

   - At least 4 million tourists visit this statue every year.

   - The Statue of Liberty is located on Liberty Island in New York City.

   - Notably, the ferry that takes tourists there does so for free.

   - The Statue of Liberty was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1984 and is a national monument of America.

Burj Khalifa

Tower located in the city of Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Burj Khalifa holds the record for the tallest building in the world since it was built. The tower is 828 metres tall and was inaugurated on 4 January 2010. What other interesting facts about Burj Khalifa are there? Here's what we managed to find:

   - This tower is home to the world's fastest lift, travelling at 60 km/h or 16.7 m/s. The total number of lifts in this building is - 57 and the number of stairwells is - 3000.

   - Burj Khalifa also broke the record as the building with the largest number of floors in the world (160 floors), surpassing the World Trade Centre, which was once the record holder with 110 floors.

   - At the base of the tower's foundation are 192 concrete pillars (piles) with a diameter of 1.5 metres, each of which extends 50 metres below ground level.

   - The design and architecture of the building was carried out by the American agency Skidmore, Owings & Merrill. Meanwhile, the chief structural engineer is Bill Baker.

National Independence Monument

The National Monument or better known as Monas Monument is a monument erected to commemorate the struggle of the Indonesian people against Dutch colonialism. The 132 metre high monument was laid in 1961 and completed in 1975 on the initiative of then President Sukarno. The Monas Monument is crowned with a gilded image of fire, symbolising the spirit of struggle. Here are other interesting facts about the National Monument:

   - Two tenders held to design the monument failed to find a design that met the requirements. Finally, President Sukarno commissioned architect Soedarsono to design it.

   - The top of the monument is adorned with a structure consisting of 77 sections of flames joined together to form a 17 metre long structure with a diameter of 6 metres. This flame is made of bronze weighing 14.5 tonnes and covered with 45 kilograms of gold. The gold on top of the National Monument was donated by a local businessman.

   - To date, the area around the monument has changed its name 5 times. From the original Gambier Field, then changed to Icada Field, which changed again to Merdeka Square, then became Monas Square and finally Monas Park.

   - At the bottom of the monument there is a museum room called the ‘independence room’. Inside are relics from the period of struggle, including: the original text of the proclamation, the red and white flag, a map of the archipelago of the Republic of Indonesia, and more.

Big Ben Tower

The Big Ben clock tower, which has the official name Elizabeth Tower, is located in the Palace of Westminster, London, United Kingdom. It was named the Elizabeth Tower to coincide with Queen Elizabeth II's 60th birthday when she ruled the United Kingdom. The tower was completed in 1858. Here are some other interesting facts about Big Ben Tower:

   - The name Big Ben, which has been used to refer to this tower, is actually the name of the bell on the tower.

   - Only native Britons can visit this iconic tower, except for foreign tourists who get permission from the local authorities, and even then, a booking of about 6 months in advance is required.

   - The Big Ben Tower is built in the Victorian Gothic style and stands 96.3 metres high. 61 metres to the clock, is built of brick encased in stone, with the rest of the top of the tower supported by an iron frame.

   - The tower is built on a site measuring 15 metres by 15 metres. The foundation is made of 3 metres thick iron buried 4 metres deep in the ground.

   - Every year the Big Ben tower tilts a few millimetres to the west or east due to the effects of heat.

   - All four dials are 55 metres above ground level.

   - Big Ben was for a time the largest clock tower in the world before that record was broken by the Milwaukee tower.

   - On New Year's Eve 1962, the clock slowed down as the snow and ice that covered the long hands of the clock caused the pendulum to virtually stop. Thus the clock stood for about 10 minutes.

Petronas Towers

They are Malaysia's iconic government buildings located in the city of Kuala Lumpur. In Malay, the tower is called the Petronas Twin Towers. They were built by Argentine architect Cesar Pelli and opened in 1998. Other interesting facts about the twin towers:

   - Although the two towers built look identical, it turns out they were built by different consortia. The first tower was built by Hazama Corporation, while the second tower was built by Samsung Engineering & Construction consortium.

   - The towers are capable of tilting up to 1.5 metres during a hurricane or earthquake. And surprisingly, once things subside, the towers' position will become vertical again.

   - The two twin towers are connected by an air bridge (skybridge), which is 58.4 metres long. The bridge is 170 metres above road level.

Sydney Opera House

A uniquely shaped building that has become a symbol of Australia. The structure, which resembles clam shells, was built almost 50 years ago. The Sydney Opera House is located at Bennelong Point on the waterfront of Port Jackson Harbour.

As the name suggests, this building is used as a venue for various drama or theatre productions, ballets and other artistic performances. The building is run by the Opera House Trust and is home to Opera Australia, the Sydney Theatre Company and the Sydney Symphony Orchestra. Other interesting facts:

   - A total of 233 designs for this theatre were considered, but in 1955 it was John Utzon from Denmark who won the competition to design it. He later won the Pritzker Prize for his work, which is considered to be the most prestigious award in architecture.

   - The shell-like shape of the Sydney Opera House building is made using Swedish white tiles. The sun's rays play beautifully on its surface from dawn to dusk.

   - The roof of the theatre is designed to resemble a ship's sails, which fits perfectly with the harbour's coastline.

   - The initial estimated cost of this project was $7 million, but then it increased almost 15 times - up to $102 million.

   - The construction of this building was frozen for ten and it was opened on 20 October 1973 by Queen Elizabeth II.

   - Around 200,000 tourists visit this building every year, making it the most popular attraction in Australia.

   - Since its opening in 1973, the Sydney Opera House has given at least 3,000 performances each year, with an annual audience of around 2 million people.

   - The Sydney Opera House has its own opera show called The Eighth Wonder. In 2007, it was one of 20 finalists for the Seven Wonders of the World nomination and the building was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Eiffel Tower

One of the most famous building structures in the world, located in the city of Paris. The iron tower, a symbol of the pride of the French people, was built in 1889 to mark the centenary of the French Revolution. It got its name in honour of the architect Gustavo Eiffel. Interesting facts:

   - 2 years, 2 months and 5 days - that's how long it took to build the Eiffel Tower.

   - 7,799,401.31 francs (650 million roubles) is the cost of building the monument, calculated in French currency.

   - The iron structure of the Eiffel Tower weighs 7,300 tonnes, and the Eiffel Tower together with the rest of the structure weighs up to 10,000 tonnes.

   - When the building was completed in 1889, the Eiffel Tower at 325 metres was the tallest building in the world until 1930 when the Chrysler Building in New York was built.

   - The Eiffel Tower can expand up to 18 centimetres when exposed to sunlight.

   - 103,000 kilometres is the distance travelled each year by a single lift that takes tourists up to the observation deck. This distance is equal to two and a half circumferences of the earth.

   - More than 200,000,000 people have visited the tower since it was built in 1889, including 6,719,200 in 2006, making it the most visited paid monument in the world.

   - 1944 was the year the Eiffel Tower could have been demolished. Hitler ordered the German military governor in France to destroy it, but he refused.

By Liliana Alvarez

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