Today’s Wonder of the Day was inspired by Ashlyn. Ashlyn Wonders, “What are the seven wonders of the world?” Thanks for WONDERing with us, Ashlyn!

What’s the greatest thing you’ve ever seen? Has a building, statue, or city ever put you at a loss for words? People have built amazing things during our time on Earth. We even call some ancient structures Wonders of the World.

As you probably know, we’re pretty into WONDERs here in Wonderopolis. We spend most of our time learning about them. So we were excited to hear there would be seven new Wonders of the World.

New Wonders of the World? Does that mean they were built in the last few years? No, it just means they’re different from the Seven Ancient Wonders of the World. The new Wonders could be anything built before the year 2000. 

There were a few rules, though. The structures had to be human-built. They also needed artistic or architectural value. Finally, the new Wonders needed to be well-preserved. After 600 million votes, the Seven New Wonders of the World were named in 2007. They are Machu Picchu, Chichen Itza, Petra, the Taj Mahal, the Roman Colosseum, the Great Wall of China, and Christ the Redeemer. Do you want to know more about these Wonders?

Machu Picchu is also called the “city of stone.” It was built by the Incas in the 15th Century. They cut the city from the mountains and made all of its buildings from stone. The Incas may have used Machu Picchu in many ways, including as a royal get-away. Today, the city sits alone in the Andes Mountains of Peru.

The Mayas built Chichen Itza in the 7th Century. People still visit the city in what’s today called Mexico. It’s home to El Castillo, a pyramid with 365 steps. Does that number sound familiar? You probably know there are 365 days on a solar calendar. There were 365 days on the Mayan Calendar, too! The steps were meant to match that. The city also holds America’s largest ball court, where the Mayas played an old form of basketball.

The ancient city of Petra stands in modern-day Jordan. Like Machu Picchu, most of Petra was cut from stone. The city’s sandstone structures, including the famous Treasury, still stand today. Once a great trading city, Petra is now a center for tourism.

India’s  Taj Mahal has over three million visitors each year. The building’s name means “Crown of the Palaces.” Builders spent 22 years building the structure on orders from Shah Jahan. After many years of damage, it was repaired in the late-19th Century.

The Roman Colosseum also made the list. This is where Romans watched wild beast hunts, gladiator games, and mock sea battles. It once held over 50,000 cheering Romans. However, you won’t see any of that at the Colosseum today. It’s been struck by lightning twice and hurt by earthquake and fire. However, the structure is still open to visitors.

The  Great Wall of China runs at least 5,500 miles. However, its true length is unknown. Some estimate it to be 13,170 miles long! Built during the Ming Dynasty, it is the longest human-made structure ever built. China built the wall for safety. However, it did not stop many attacks. Today, visitors walk along the wall, high in the air.

The Christ the Redeemer statue rounds out the list. Built just after World War I, this statue is the youngest of the New Seven Wonders of the World. It towers over Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Christ the Redeemer stands at 98 feet tall, not including its 26-foot base.

Will we choose any more Wonders of the World? What would you put on the list? Stonehenge? The Statue of Liberty? How about the Sydney Opera House? There’s no shortage of amazing structures to choose from.

Standards: C3.D2.His.2, CCRA.L.3, CCRA.L.6, CCRA.R.1, CCRA.R.2, CCRA.W.1, CCRA.W.8, CCRA.W.9, CCRA.L.1, CCRA.L.1, CCRA.W.7, CCRA.SL.1, CCRA.W.2, CCRA.W.7, CCRA.SL.2, CCRA.R.4, CCRA.R.10

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