This post was edited by Cicci at 2012-3-8 10:35|
6. Venice, Italy
May be a short time left to see these masked beauties.
While Venice brings to mind a charming gondola scene, complete with an appropriately striped-shirt gondolier, the sad truth is those famous canals may be all that’s left of the romantic Italian city.
Many have been claiming for a while that Venice is drowning, and those claims are unfortunately not far from the truth. As sea levels have been rising and rainfall has increased, floods have been occurring more frequently -- and with each flood, Venice’s fate grows more precarious.
Not only does the water rise, the stones become significantly more eroded, and the wooden support gets more decayed, making the balancing act a tricky one.
How to get there: If coming by car, drive over the Ponte della Libertà bridge and into Piazzale Roma, the only place in Venice where cars are allowed. Otherwise, fly into Marco Polo airport, or travel by train into Santa Lucia Railway Station and then either walk or take a water taxi into the main city. www.italyguides.it
7. The Dead Sea, Jordan, Israel, West Bank
The Dead Sea -- a self-fulfilling prophecy?
The world's saltiest sea has become increasingly endangered in recent years. As it’s in an extremely hot and dry region, the water level naturally fluctuates based on evaporation.
Add to that increased use of the Jordan River, which feeds into it, and the Dead Sea may soon be as dead as its name. The sea has shrunk by a third, and sinks approximately five centimeters each year.
How to get there: From Tel Aviv, take the Egged public bus from Tel Aviv Arlozoroff central station, at 8:40 am to Ein Bokek. From Jerusalem, there are several Egged buses from the central station to Ein Gedi, Ein Bokek and Masada. If on a tight schedule, rent a car at either airport, as bus times are fairly infrequent. www.visitjordan.com
8. Taj Mahal, Agra, India
Unless something's done to preserve this place, the only Taj Mahals left will be casinos and curry houses.
The Taj Mahal may be India’s most famous tourist attraction forming part of the itinerary for up to 4 million travelers each year, but a look at this architectural beauty may soon be restricted to pretty postcards.
Authorities are considering closing the tomb to the public to offset years of damage caused by all those heavy feet.
The mausoleum was completed in 1638 and was intended as a monument to Mughal emperor Shah Jahan’s favorite wife, Mumtaz Mahal.
Currently, tourists can tour the Taj Mahal and its accompanying gardens, but in an effort to reduce pollution, cars aren’t allowed near the area, so visitors must catch an electric bus, or walk.
Experts have noted that the decline in water level of the nearby Yamuna River is affecting the wooden foundation, while the air pollution and many tourists have been ruining the walls.
How to get there: After reaching Delhi, hire a private taxi/rickshaw or hop on a bus to reach Taj Mahal, or take the railway to Agra Cantt Station. From about a kilometer before the Taj Majal Main Gate, there are battery operated buses, rickshaws and horse/man-drawn rickshaws that take you to the main gate. www.tajmahal.com
9. Pyramids of Giza, Cairo, Egypt
n Greek mythology, the Sphinx destroyed many a traveler with its lethal riddle, but now the tables may have turned.
The Pyramids of Giza have been around for more than 4,000 years, but this last remaining wonder of the Ancient World may be in its last few decades.
Though a treasured landmark, the pyramids aren’t protected by Egyptian officials. While camel rides and horseback tours are now banned near the area, human visitors are able to crawl all over the monument area and vendors and tour guides add to the already large crowd, making it near impossible to see the pyramids from a distance.
How to get there: The Metro Line 2 runs from Cairo into Giza station, where there are minibuses (al-haram) available for the 8 kilometers or so left till the pyramids. Otherwise, take a coach bus with Cairo Transport Authority from central Cairo straight to the pyramids. www.egypt.travel
10. Little Green Street, London, England
Heavy lorries, please stay away.
Little Green Street isn’t as well known as some of the other tourist spots in London, but that may be why it hasn’t been ruined -- yet. The one-block street in Kentish Town is one of the only intact Georgian thoroughfares left in the vast metropolis.
The cobblestoned street is flanked by 18th-century houses, which are protected as historic properties -- but the street is another story.
Little Green Street, which has united a group of preservationists that includes artists, writers, actors and musicians, is at risk of being destroyed by developers, who want to build on the land behind.
If this does happen, protesters are worried the constant pressure of trucks and heavy machinery would eventually destroy the tiny street that survived the bombing of World War II.
How to get there: From London, take the National Rail to Kentish Town Station or the tube to Camden Town station. From both stations, it’s a 10-15 minute walk to Highgate Road, the closest major road to Little Green Street. www.littlegreenstreet.com