Decanter travel guide: World heritage wine regions

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  • Friday 28 September 2012

Wine is one of mankind’s greatest traditions, bringing man closer to the land over thousands of years. On the 40th anniversary of the UNESCO World Heritage Convention, Katie Kelly Bell looks at five famous wine regions that are also designated World Heritage Sites.

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The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) identifies cultural and natural examples of heritage around the globe with the goal of protecting and preserving them for future generations.

The organisation was founded in November 1945, just after the end of World War II, as a way to nurture humanity and heritage by developing ‘the intellectual and moral solidarity of mankind’.

Sites that qualify must have ‘outstanding value to humanity’. Once a site has been accepted, UNESCO offers everything from technical assistance and public awareness to professional training and emergency assistance to preserve sites.

UNESCO has 195 member states, while its World Heritage Committee, which meets yearly to select new sites and allocate funds as needed, has 21 member nations.

This year marks the 40th anniversary of the UNESCO World Heritage Convention, a treaty that has become the foremost international legal tool in support of the conservation of the world’s cultural and natural heritage.

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