Cosmos Global Documentaries MONUMENTAL TREASURES OF THE WORLD ! Episode 1
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Various Locations In Peru, Portugal, China, Spain, Greece and Thailand
High in the Peruvian Andes there is a place of sun worship and mysterious ritual, Machu Picchu. Even today, the Lost City of the Inca’s is like an amazing castle with steep ravines on three sides and on the fourth, a protective mountain range. The warm light of the first rays of sunshine penetrates through the evening mist and, as with each morning, the mysterious, weather-beaten ruined city rises once again.
Through entrances of sculptured stone blocks “Guard Houses” appear. Walls and embankments seem to defend the inner ruins, with its temples and places of cultural interest, from unwelcome guests. From seamless stone blocks, it seems that even today, 500 years after being built, its flourishing life of yesteryear wants to reveal itself yet again.
The Torre De Belem is one of the main landmarks of the Portuguese metropolis of Lisbon. Equally, it is a reminder of the importance of Portugal as a military and naval power in past centuries. Hundreds of sea voyages to India and Africa embarked from the mouth of the river Tejo, spreading word of Portugal’s new-found glory around the world. The influences of many countries are to be found in the construction of this fortification. Byzantine, Venetian and also Arabian, even Indian building elements combine in the Torre de Belem in monumental Manuelism style.
The famous discoverer Marco Polo called the Chinese city of Suzhou, The Venice of the East. But unlike in Italy, countless bicycles are part of daily life in this modern city. However, Suzhou is more well known for its gardens. Beautiful bridges span across its canals while run down houses indicate the meager financial resources of their inhabitants. The city’s more impressive and elegant buildings date back to Suzhou’s long and glorious past, such as the town gate and wall of Pan Men.
In southern Spain, majestically, yet mysteriously, the legendary Alhambra proudly rises above Granada’s atmospheric old town. Curiously, the history of the Alhambra began with the gradual decline of the Islamic empire of the Moorish, Al-Andalus. After Córdoba, the former centre of power of the Caliphs fell into the hands of the Christians in 1238, and Granada became the country’s new capital city.