Geoparks of the world

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New Delhi: Earlier this month, UNESCO designated eight new UNESCO Global Geoparks, which brings the number of sites participating in the Global Geoparks Network to 169 in 44 countries.

Vestjylland UNESCO Global Geopark, Denmark

About one-third of the Geopark’s surface area is on land, the rest consisting of marine areas in the Limfjord and the North Sea. The terrestrial part of the Geopark’s hilly glacial landscapes with flat outwash plains, lagoons and lakes was formed by successive ice ages, particularly the most recent ice age. The Geopark comprises 13 Natura, 2000 sites and five nature and wildlife reserves encompassing more than 90 geological sites.

Saimaa UNESCO Global Geopark, Finland

The Geopark takes its name from Lake Saimaa, the largest lake in Finland, and fourth largest lake in Europe. Situated in southeast Finland, south of the Vuoksi water system, it is home to a number of unique and endangered species, including the Saimaa ringed seal and landlocked salmon.

Thuringia Inselsberg — Drei Gleichen UNESCO Global Geopark, Germany

Located in Thuringia, central Germany, the Geopark’s extraordinary fossil record has been the subject of research for over 300 years leading to the accumulation of great geological expertise. Its fossil reefs, among the first to be recognised as such in the 19th century, are the remnants of the formation of a small island surrounded by reefs in the Zechstein Sea.

Grevena — Kozani UNESCO Global Geopark, Greece

In the north of Greece, in the region of West of Macedonia, this Geopark’s geology comprises rock formations dating back from about one billion years ago to the present documenting several tectonic plate events. It also features some of the world’s most important proboscidean fossils, the Lands of the Elephants, and the world’s longest known mammoth tusk, over 5 m long.


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