November 12, 2011
South America struck high in the world’s international contest in search of the World’s New Seven Wonders of Nature, with two of its most emblematic locations reaching the much cherished list of the Top Seven: The Amazon Region, also known as Amazonia; Amazon Rainforest; Amazon Jungle or Amazon Basin and the Iguazu Falls.
As the voting finalized, planet-wide, this Friday, November 11th; the Founder and President of the New 7 Wonders Foundation, Bernard Weber, announced from his headquarters in Zurich, Switzerland, that the provisional results showed the following winners, in alphabetical order: Amazon, (shared by Ecuador, Peru, Brazil, Bolivia, Colombia, French Guyana; Guyana; Surinam and Venezuela); Halong Bay, Vietnam; Iguazu Falls, (Argentina and Brazil); Jeju Island, South Korea; Komodo Island, Indonesia; Puerto Princesa Underground River, (Philipines) and Table Mountain, South Africa.
Mr. Weber’s announcement, long awaited around the world, included thanks “to the many champions, citizens, voluntary organizations, public bodies and governments which helped promote the New 7 Wonders of Nature campaign, over the past four years”. Effectively, the contest started in 2007 with over 440 locations from over 220 countries which were then trimmed to the 28 Finalist candidates from which a short list of 14 was further elected, always by vote, and finally to the seven proud winners. Voting was audit-controlled and could be done, worldwide, by Internet including the social networks, telephone or SMS messages. Both Mr. Weber and the New 7 Wonders Foundation emphasized the fact that these results were preliminary and could vary as they are independently verified and validated. This process will be completed in early 2012, when the official announcement will be made and Inaugural celebrations organized at the elected locations.
The Amazon Rainforest is a giant tropical forest and river basin, the world’s largest, which encompasses seven million square kilometers (1.7 billion acres), located within nine South American nations. It is the home to more than one-third of the world’s animal and plant species and, by far, the richest forest in biodiversity. Amazonia represents more than half of the planet’s remaining rainforests and occupies more than 40% of the entire South American continent. The mighty Amazon River is the largest river in the world by volume, with a total flow greater than the top ten rivers of the world, combined. It also accounts for almost one-fifth of the total river flow and has the biggest drainage basin in our planet. With such stunning facts and figures, there is no wonder as to why this magnificent South American wonder made it to the list of the World’s New Seven Wonders of Nature.
Meanwhile, the Iguazu Falls, located where the Iguazu River tumbles over the edge of the Paranà River plateau, in the border area between Argentina and Brazil is unquestionably one more of South America’s natural wonders and a highlight in the list of the continent’s tourism attractions. Numerous islands along the 2.7 kilometer (1.7 miles) long edge divide these falls into some 275 separate waterfalls and cataracts, which vary between 200 and 270 feet high. The view from any of the numerous angles and viewing points in Argentina, Brazil and even Paraguay, is simply spectacular, dwarfing the magnificence of the legendary Niagara Falls and providing serious competition to the African Victoria Falls. At certain points, along the Iguazu Falls natural complex, one person can stand and be surrounded by 260 degrees of waterfalls. Walkways, facilities and easy access make this natural wonder one of the most popular tourist destinations in South America.
South America is greatly proud to have reached two positions on the preliminary list of the World’s New 7 Wonders of Nature. Both areas are also highly demanded tourism attractions, which, with this nomination, will more than likely boost with new travelers wishing to visit them. Congratulations to the winners…..!!!