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CAHOKIA MOUNDS STATE HISTORIC SITE Est. 1982 | Illinois

Why it’s UNESCO-worthy: Considered America’s first city, the largest prehistoric Native American settlement north of Mexico once covered 3,500 acres and numbered 10,000 to 20,000 residents. Today, 80 out of 120 earthen mounds dating from A.D. 1050 to 1200 still exist, including the 100-foot-tall Monks Mound, the largest earthwork in North America and the only mound visitors can climb. How to reach it: The site is a few miles from Collinsville, Ill., eight miles east of downtown St. Louis. Best time to visit: Weekdays in June and July, when archaeologists are up to their elbows in excavations. Insider tip: For independent and interactive exploration, rent an iPod Touch ($3 at the gift shop) and time travel back to the Mississippian civilization.

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PAPAHANAUMOKUAKEA Est. 2010 | Hawaii Why it’s UNESCO-worthy: The Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument makes some noise for its natural and cultural attractions, which are spread out — and under — 582,578 square miles in the Pacific Ocean. The largest fully-protected conservation area in the world throws a protective blanket over an underwater volcanic range (part of the Hawaii-Emperor seamount chain), 3.5 million acres of coral reefs, habitats for flora and fauna unique to the Hawaiian islands, and rookeries that provide a landing and breeding pad for 14 million seabirds. On land, the islands of Nihoa and Mokumanamana archive Polynesian and Hawaiian artifacts and traditions, such as heiau shrines and stone carvings. How to reach it: You can’t, without a permit for conservation, management, education, research and cultural pursuits. Best time to visit: 24/7, if you are a fish or spinner dolphin. Insider tip: You can sample Papahanaumokuakea elsewhere in the Hawaiian islands. At the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Mokupapapa Discovery Center on the Big Island, fish from the monument call the 3,500-gallon aquarium home sweet home. The Waikiki Aquarium’s Northwestern Hawaiian Islands exhibition presents an interactive kiosk dedicated to the protected area, and the Maui Ocean Center created a new Papahanaumokuakea exhibit with a topographic map, photos of the inhabitants and an explanation of its name. In Honolulu, the Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum displays stone figurines from Mokumanamana. Kaena Point, on Oahu’s North Shore, bears a close resemblance to the national monument’s coastal shorelines, including lounging monk seals and nesting albatross.

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Diego Maradona funeral: When Argentina icon will be laid to rest & how to watch ceremony

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PAPAHANAUMOKUAKEA Est. 2010 | Hawaii Why it’s UNESCO-worthy: The Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument makes some noise for its natural and cultural attractions, which are spread out — and under — 582,578 square miles in the Pacific Ocean. The largest fully-protected conservation area in the world throws a protective blanket over an underwater volcanic range (part of the Hawaii-Emperor seamount chain), 3.5 million acres of coral reefs, habitats for flora and fauna unique to the Hawaiian islands, and rookeries that provide a landing and breeding pad for 14 million seabirds. On land, the islands of Nihoa and Mokumanamana archive Polynesian and Hawaiian artifacts and traditions, such as heiau shrines and stone carvings. How to reach it: You can’t, without a permit for conservation, management, education, research and cultural pursuits. Best time to visit: 24/7, if you are a fish or spinner dolphin. Insider tip: You can sample Papahanaumokuakea elsewhere in the Hawaiian islands. At the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Mokupapapa Discovery Center on the Big Island, fish from the monument call the 3,500-gallon aquarium home sweet home. The Waikiki Aquarium’s Northwestern Hawaiian Islands exhibition presents an interactive kiosk dedicated to the protected area, and the Maui Ocean Center created a new Papahanaumokuakea exhibit with a topographic map, photos of the inhabitants and an explanation of its name. In Honolulu, the Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum displays stone figurines from Mokumanamana. Kaena Point, on Oahu’s North Shore, bears a close resemblance to the national monument’s coastal shorelines, including lounging monk seals and nesting albatross.

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