Photo: milosk50/Shutterstock

All 24 of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the US

United States Parks Galleries
by Henry Miller Oct 20, 2017

After the Department of State announced that the US will be withdrawing from UNESCO as a member, we thought it would a good idea to remind you where you can find America’s World Heritage Sites.

Since 1978, UNESCO has established 23 cultural and historic sites within the US. Most of these sites are also National Parks, so it is unlikely that they will encounter any immediate negative affects. This is also not the first time the US has left UNESCO: President Reagan withdrew from the organization in 1984, while the Obama administration cut off payments to the organization in 2011. Both these administrations and others have cited “anti-Israel bias” as a cause for criticism. But by giving up UNESCO membership, the US is forfeiting its obligation to fund the protection of other sites across the globe, including sites at risk from climate change and warfare.

Founded in 1945, the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) was established to, “contribute to the building of peace, the eradication of poverty, sustainable development and intercultural dialogue through education, the sciences, culture, communication and information”, according to its website.

UNESCO World Heritage Sites span every corner of the US, from San Juan to Hawaii, California to Virginia, and we at Matador feel lucky to have every one of them.

1. Mesa Verde National Park in Montezuma County, Colorado

Chapin Mesa in Mesa Verde National Park, Colorado

Photo: Colin D. Young/Shutterstock

2. Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming, Montana and Idaho


Photo: Lorcel/Shutterstock

3. Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve in Yukon, Alaska

Glacier Bay National Park in Alaska

Photo: Maridav/Shutterstock

4. Grand Canyon National Park in northern Arizona

us unesco sites - grand canyon

Photo: Nikolas_jkd/Shutterstock

5. Everglades National Park in southern Florida

6. Independence National Historical Park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Independence Hall in Philly

Photo: Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

7. Redwoods National and State Parks in Humboldt County, California


Photo: Stephen Moehle/Shutterstock

8. Mammoth Cave National Park in central Kentucky

np 2

Photo: TravelEatShoot/Shutterstock

9. Olympic National Park in northwestern Washington

Olympic National Park

Photo: Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

10. Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Tennessee and North Carolina

us unesco sites smoky mtns

Photo: Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

11. La Fortaleza and San Juan National Historic Site in San Juan, Puerto Rico

us unesco site - puerto rico

Photo: Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

12. Statue of Liberty National Monument in New York, New York

us unesco sites - nyc

Photo: Sanchai Kumar/Shutterstock

13. Yosemite National Park in Madera County, California

Yosemite Valley California landscape destination

Photo: Sopotnicki/Shutterstock

14. Chaco Culture National Historic Park in San Juan County, New Mexico

us unesco world heritage site - chaco

Photo: Sopotnicki/Shutterstock

15. Hawaii Volcanoes National Park in Hawaii County, Hawaii

hawaii volcanoes unesco us site

Photo: jo Crebbin/Shutterstock

16. Monticello and the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Virginia

University of Virginia at dusk

Photo: BrianPIrwin/Shutterstock

17. Taos Pueblo in Taos, New Mexico

Taos Pueblo

Photo: Nick Fox/Shutterstock

18. Carlsbad Caverns National Park in Eddy County, New Mexico

us unesco sites - carlsbad

Photo: Doug Meek/Shutterstock

19. Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park in Glacier County, Montana

us unesco sites - waterton montana lake

Photo: Scott Prokop/Shutterstock

20. Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument in Hawaii and Midway Atoll

21. San Antonio Missions in San Antonio, Texas

22. Cahokia in St. Clair County, Illinois

Prehistoric Mound, Cahokia, Illinois

Photo: Joseph Sohm/Shutterstock

23. Monumental Earthworks of Poverty Point in West Carroll Parish, Louisiana

Photo: The Southern Gentleman/Shutterstock

24. The Architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright (various locations across the US)

US unesco sites - falling water

Photo: V Can/Shutterstock

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