If you are a history buff, or you just consider yourself to have a keen understanding of the way societies rise and fall, travel can often go hand-in-hand with that pretty well. There are plenty of reasons to travel, but arguably one of the absolute best is to use it as a way to understand more intuitively the history of the world. It goes without saying that there are certain destinations and locations which are particularly conducive to learning history – but the question is, where are they, exactly? In this article, we are going to look at some of the best places to visit if you are keen on improving your historical understanding.
If there is one place which sees itself at the top of the lists of historical sites again and again, it is Rome. The Italian capital is not only one of the most famous and most visited cities anywhere on Earth, but for good reason – as it is one of the most endlessly fascinating as well. Whether it is the Colosseum, ancient amphitheatre of the Romans, or the head of the Catholic Church – the Vatican and St. Marks – you are bound to find some of the best history here more than anywhere else. You can eve get to witness some of the greatest and oldest ruins in Europe, and in the world, with the foundation of Rome still visible on the site of Romulus and Remus’ first founding moments. You can’t consider yourself to have seen world history in all its glory if you have not yet visited this astounding city, so put it high up on your bucket list as soon as you can.
In a similar vein to Rome, you also simply have to consider the Greek capital of Athens. Roman and Greek history are often considered in comparison with one another, and in many aspects of their mythology and history they do actually cross over from time to time. For that reason, visiting one means that you will get so much more out of visiting the other as well. And whether or not you are planning on visiting Rome, Athens is still a standalone historical wonder of a place. An absolute must-see is the Acropolis, the great god-placed rock in the middle of the city which houses the Parthenon, one of the oldest ruins in the world, rivalling Rome in its age and magnificence. Plus, just wandering Athens in general is bound to bring out the keen historian in you, and is again one of those places you should consider a must-see if you are going to brush up on your world history as well as you can. Consider Athens on a par with Rome when it comes to that bucket list.
Still in Europe, we can’t gloss over the English capital of London, another of the best spots anywhere in the world for real history. The truly wonderful thing about London is that you can see not only its fantastic history, but you see it all piled in together with different ages in the past as well as the modern day. It is this all-together approach which gives the city of London is truly unique look, and which makes it an absolute must visit for the keen historian. Even if you do not know much about its history, its many tours will be a great way to discover just those truths. And it is a slightly more recent history compared to Rome and Athens, meaning that adding this city to your destination list will give you an even wider appreciation of European history. For this, and many other reasons besides, London is absolutely worth a visit.
Again in Europe, and again for a much more recent kind of history, the capital of Germany must be visited for anyone wanting to gain an appreciation of their own pace in things. Home to some infamous historical moments throughout the 20th century in particular, Berlin is a must-visit simply because it helps to put in place the sometimes bloody and catastrophic recent European history which we all already know well about. This is because it is one thing reading about such events in books, and quite another actually seeing the places that those books talk about. Just spending some time gazing at the site of the Berlin Wall will be sure to get your spine tingling, and it will help to add a sense of realism and truth to your historical tour of the world. Whatever your current understanding of history, Berlin is a necessary destination to really cement these ideas in reality in a strong way.
Going much further back indeed, we again get onto some genuinely ancient history – that of the stunning and varied nation of Egypt. If you are going to visit Egypt, you simply have to spend some time in Giza, home to the pyramids – some of the most famous human-made structures anywhere in the world. These are the kinds of things you hear plenty about, but can’t appreciate in their entirety without actually visiting them. Therefore, a visit to Giza is necessary if you want to see as much history as you like. If you want to really delve into some ancient history, seeing the pyramids of Giza is a must.
Sometimes history is not dry facts and figures – sometimes it is a testament to undying love. The perfect example of this has to be seen in Agra – home of the famous Taj Mahal. This temple is absolutely stunning to witness, and there is a very good reason it makes it on to these kinds of lists again and again. If you are a keen architect, historian – or even just a keen lover, you will find the Taj Mahal to be an absolute must-see beautiful location. Consider this if you want to combine your historical understanding with your understanding of true eternal love.
The above are all hugely popular destinations – and for a very good reason. Visit these and you will have a much fuller sense of the history of the world – something everyone can benefit from.
*This is a collaboration post