Do you want to know how many world heritage sites in India! Then at first you should know why a place becomes an world heritage site. In every competitive exams, several general knowledge questions, current affairs questions, news related questions come from topic Indian heritage site. Thats why we need to learn about important world heritage sites located in India. Here you can find most visited world heritage site, most popular world heritage site, most ancient world heritage site in India. So let’s check out following list of most important Indian heritage sites famous in the world.
A world heritage site is a place or area identified, protected and maintained by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO). A heritage site must have scientific, cultural, historical and other form of significance universally.
India is a country enriched of arts, culture, history, architecture and beautiful nature. There are lots of places in India those have historical, scientific, architectural and natural importance. From these UNESCO has chosen 36 places and recognised them as World Heritage Site. These places includes parks, forest, dessert, memorial, city etc.
Among the 36 the first four Indian sites became world heritages are – Agra Fort, Ajanta Caves, Ellora Caves and Tajmahal same year in 1983. Since then 32 places have been added to the list finishing 2017’s addition of Historic City of Ahmedabad(India’s first UNESCO World Heritage City Site)as heritage site.
As of 2018 UNESCO have 1073 approved world heritage site spread within United Nation’s 193 member nations. And India ranks 6th amongst them by acquiring 36 sites led consecutively by Italy(53), China(52), Spain(46), France(43) and Germany(42) and also tops among South Asian countries(36 out of 59). Based in Paris, France, UNESCO with its constitution fully came into force in 1946. According to United Nation’s charter this organisation mainly focuses on education, culture, natural sciences, social sciences and communication. Securing of cultural and natural world heritage sites is one of UNESCO’s main promoted programmes among international science ceminars, preserving human rights, freedom of press, literacy and world literature translations.
As per World Heritage Convention UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee is appointed to maintain and protect all of these heritage sites.
Latest List of World Heritage Sites In India 2020
Let’s explore why these 36 Indian sites became world heritage. We have listed state wise heritage sites, means you can guess how many heritage sites in each Indian state
Heritage Sites Location
1. Ajanta caves > Maharashtra
The Ajanta Caves in Maharashtra has been listed as cultural World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1983. It is the first heritage site in India. The amazing rock-cut sculptures of Buddhist caves with nice paintings can be noticed here.
2. Agra Fort > Uttar pradesh
In 1983 UNESCO inscribed the Agra Fort(also known as Red Fort of Agra) of Uttar Pradesh as a cultural heritage site. This is the first heritage site in India along with Ajanta Caves. Located near Yamuna river and 2.5 Kilometers long Agra Fort is a historic monument built with red sandstone during the reign of Emperor Akbar in 16th century making it one of the famous tourist spot.
3. Ellora caves > Maharashtra
Ellora Caves of Maharashtra has been listed as a cultural World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1983. A mix religious arts of Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism can be found here. The rock-cut well sculptured Ellora Caves are great examples of ancient civilization of India which built between 600-1000 AD.
4. Elephanta Caves > Maharashtra
Elephanta Caves are collection of Hindu temples dedicated to lord Shiva. The rock -cut stone sculptures of Elephanta caves built in 19th century and now its under maintenance of Archaeological Survey of India. They are located on Elephanta island in Mumbai, in the Indian state of Maharashtra. This site was listed as World Heritage Site in 1987 for its cultural importance.
5. Kaziranga wild life sanctuary > Assam
The Kaziranga Wild life sanctuary located on eastern zone in India near Bhahmaputra river. It is a natural World Heritage Site declared by UNESCO in 1985. Kajiranga was declared National Park in 1974 and covering an area of 106200 acres. Kajiranga sanctuary most famous for one-horned rhinoceros.
6. Qutb Minar > Delhi
Qutb Minar is a cultural World Heritage Site listed by UNESCO and located in Delhi. The height of Qutb Minar is 72 metres. The construction work of this historic site was started in 1192 by Qutubuddin Aibak and completed by Iltutmis in 13th century.
7. Keoladeo National Park > Bharatpur, Rajasthan
It is one of the historical national park in India formerly known as Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary. Spreading over an area of 29 squar kilometres this biosphere reserve is home to 350 bird species. The park was declared as protected sanctuary and established in 1982.
8. Sun Temple of Konark > Odissa
The Konark Sun Temple is a historic piece of architecture built in 13th-century CE. The state of Odisha became proud when the temple inscribed in world heritage list in 1984. The ancient culture of Odisha reflected here.
9. Khajuraho > Madhyapradesh
The Khajuraho is a group of Hindu and Jain temples in Madhya Pradesh famous for nagara-style architectural symbolism and erotic sculptures. Various type of arts can be noticed into the idols of temples. The Khajuraho temples were built during reign of Chandella dynasty in 1000 CE. Every year Khajuraho Dance Festival is celebrated here. Khajuraho was mentioned in Persian historian Al-Biruni’s writings.
10. Churches & Convents of Goa > Goa
Churches and Covents of Goa is a set of religious monuments located in territory of Goa listed as World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1986. It is a cultural site built during Portuguese empire.
11. Champaner- Pavagadh Archaeological Park > Gujarat
The Champaner city was founded by one of the most influential Emperor of Gujarat Sultanate Mahmud Begada in 14th century. The park includes archaeological, historic and cultural heritage monuments of capital of state of Gujarat. The heritage site is filled with forts and bastions extends from hills of Pavagadh to city of Champaner. Hindu and Muslim culture and architectures are reflected here. In 2004 it was inscribed by UNESCO as a Heritage Site.
12. Temple of Chola > Tamilnadu
The Great Living Chola Temples are the group of Hindu temples built during reign of Chola dynasty in 11 century in Indian state of Tamilnadu. The site includes Brihadisvara Temple at Thanjavur, the Temple of Gangaikonda Cholapuram and Airavatsvara Temple at Darasuram. This site became cultural heritage of India in 1987.
13. Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus > Maharashtra
The Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus formerly known as Victoria Terminus is a historic railway station in Mumbai, Maharashtra built in 1887 to commemorate Queen Victoria. It is one of the best Indian architecture designed by Frederick William Stevens. It is one of the busiest railway station in India. It was renamed in 1996 from Victoria Terminus to Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus to commemorate Chhatrapati Shivaji the founder of the Maratha Empire. The site became world heritage in 2004
14. Jantar Mantar of Jaipur > Rajasthan
The Jantar Mantar monument in Jaipur, Rajasthan is a collection of nineteen architectural astronomical instruments built by the Rajput king Sawai Jai Singh II in 1734. It is an World Heritage Site inscribed by UNESCO in 2010 located near City Palace and Hawa Mahal of Jaipur.
15. Tajmahal > Uttarpradesh
Tajmahal is a great historic memorial built by Emperor Shah Jahan in 1632 in memory of Empress Mumtaj Mahal. It is also one of the seven wonders of the world. It is a tomb built with white marbles and includes mosques and guest houses. Tajmahal located on river bank of Yamuna in the Indian city of Agra. It was included in heritage list in 1983.
16. Nandadevi Sanctuary & Valley of Flowers > Uttarakhand
Nandadevi Sanctuary & Valley of Flowers is a national park established in 1982 located around peak of Nanda Devi. It was became heritage of India in 1988
17. Temple of Pattadakal > Karnataka
Pattadakal is a complex of Hindu and Jain temples located on Mahaprabha river in the Indian state of Karnataka. This cultural heritage were built during reign of historic Chalukya dynadty. The site was listed by UNESCO in 1987 and now under maintenance of Archaeological Survey of India.
18. Mountain Railways of India > West Bengal, Tamilnadu, Himachal
The Mountain Railways of India consists of Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, Nilgiri Mountain Railway and Kalka-Shimla Railway became UNESCO world heritage consecutively in 1999, 2005 and in 2008.
19. Fatehpur Sikri > Uttarpradesh
Fatehpur Sikri is also known as ‘City of Victory’ is a town in Agra District, UttarPradesh, India built in 16th century by Mughal Emperor Akbar in 1569.
20. Bhimbetka > Madhyapradesh
The Rock Shelters of Bhimbetka is a nice rock paintings and beautiful rock sculptures located located in the foothills of Vindhya range of hills in the state of Madhya Pradesh.
21. Great Temple of Mahabalipuram > Tamilnadu
22.Complex of Mahavodhi Temple > Bihar
The Mahavodhi Temple is one of great example of Indian culture was built during the reign of Emperor Ashoka in 3rd century. Its covering an area of 12 acres in Bihar. This temple was listed as cultural heritage site by UNESCO. The structure of temple built completely with bricks. Siddhartha Goutam Buddha gained ‘Bodhi’ from here and spread buddhism all over the world.
23. Manas Wild Life Sanctuary > Assam
Manas Wild life Sanctuary is a natural heritage site listed by UNESCO in 1985. It is located in north-eastern state of Assam near Manas river. Manas sanctuary includes tiger, Indian rhinoceros, buffaloes, clouded leopard, golden langur, Indian elephant, birds and various type of species. Manas was declared a sanctuary in 1928 and in 1973 declared a tiger reserve. Manas sanctuary covering a total area of 120000 acres.
24. Red Fort Complex > Delhi
Red Fort is palace fort built by Mughal Emperor Shahjahan in 17th century. Red Fort located in Delhi near Yamuna river. The outside of fort is built of sandstone. UNESCO listed Red Fort as a cultural World Heritage Site. Total Red Fort complex area covered by 120 acres.
25. Buddhist Monuments of Sanchi > Madhyapradesh
Sanchi is a Buddhist complex famous for its Great Stupa at Sanchi town in Raisen district of the State of Madhya Pradesh, India. The Sanchi is located 46 kilometres north-east of Bhopal, capital of Madhya Pradesh. It is one of the oldest stone made architectue built by the Great Emperor Ashoka in 3rd century BCE. It is one of the main witness of the Mauryan Empire.
26. Sundarvans National Park >West Bengal
The Sundarvans National Park, the largest Mangrove forest in the world is a national park, tiger reserve, UNESCO World Heriage Site located in Sundarvans, the delta of the river Ganges bordered by Bay of Bengal, in West Bengal
27. Temple of Hampi & Vijaynagar> Karnataka
The world heritage site Hampi is a Group of Monuments located on the bank of river Tungabhadra, in Karnataka. The Hampi contains the historic witness of the Great Vijaynagar Empire. The Heritage site of Hampi is surrounded by Hindu and Jain temples and reflect the ancient Dravidian culture.
28. Tomb of Humayun > Delhi
Tomb of Humayun was built in 1570 during Mughal empire. It is a cultural World Heritage monument listed by UNESCO in 1993. The tomb built in marbels and chhatris.
29. Western Ghats > ——–
The Western Ghats is also known as Sahyadri Mountains. It lies on western side of India and became world heritage in 2012.
30. Hill Forts of Rajasthan > Rajasthan
Hill Forts of Rajasthan are a series of rocky places of Aravallis maountain range in Rajasthan. This property consists of Chittor Fort, Kumbhalgarh Fort, Ranthambore Fort, Amer Fort, Gagron Fort and Jaisalmer Fort. These fort complex includes palaces, Hindu and Jain temples and represents the power and influence of Rajput military forces.
31. Rani ki Vav > Patan,Gujrat
Rani ki Vav is a stepwell located in the town of Patan, Gujarat, India. The reason behind popularity is its size and sculpture. The length of Rani ki Vav is more than 64m long, 20m wide and 27m deep and there are more than 500 sculptures of Hindu gods and goddesses. Rani ki vav was built in 11th century CE. It was became world heritage in 2014
32. Great Himalayan National Park > Himachal pradesh
Great Himalayan National Park is one of the national park in India located in Kullu, Himachal Pradesh. Spreading an area of 1170 square kilometers the park came into existence in 1984. Great Himalayan Park is home to different type of birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, mollusks and insects. This place became world heritage in 2014.
33. Nalanda > Bihar
Nalanda was a large Buddhist monastery during the reign of ancient Magadha empire. It is located near Bihar Sharif, Patna. Nalanda became an university from fifth to twelfth century CE. It is an Archaeological Site of Nalanda Mahavihara maintained by Archaeological Survey of India. Its a great place for tourism.
34. Khangchendzoga National Park >Sikkim
Kanchenjunga National Park or Kanchenjunga Biosphere Reserve is a national park in Indian state of Sikkim. It is the first mixed heritage in India inscribed in 2016 in UNESCO’s World Heritage list. The park named from Kangchenjunga(8586 meter)the third-highest mountain peak in the world. It is the home of snow leopard, mask deer, Himalayan tahr like animals. Zemu Glacier flows within this park.
35. The Architectural Work Of Le Corbusier > Chandigarh
The 20th century made urban and architectural work of Le Corbusier is home to numerous architectural projects of Le Corbusier, Pierre Jeanneret and Albert Mayer. It came on heritage list in 2016
36. Historic City of Ahmedabad > Gujarat
The most recent heritage site in India the Historic City of Ahmedabad was established by Emperor Ahmed Shah I of Gujarat Sultanate in 1411 CE. It was declared first heritage city in India in 2017 at 41st session of World Heritage Committee.