From memorials, museums and iconic buildings to towers, bridges and parks, landmarks are what make a city unique. No trip to L.A. is complete without a visit to the Hollywood Sign and a holiday in London that doesn’t include Big Ben is simply out of the question.
But not all landmarks are as unique as you’d think. In fact, some are so popular they’ve been copied – a few more than once. The good news is that these lookalikes are actually quite amazing. Here are our top picks of the world’s best copycat landmarks – they’re same, same but different!
Sydney Harbour Bridge, Sydney
Copycat: Hell Gate Bridge, New York
Along with the Opera House, the Sydney Harbour Bridge is undoubtedly one of Australia’s most recognised landmarks. Whether you climb it, walk across it, fly over it or cruise under it, the views are incredible. The Sydney Harbour Bridge may be a wonder in our eyes but the truth is, it’s not as unique as we’d like to think. In fact, there’s a very similar structure called Hell Gate Bridge in New York. Before you get all up in arms about this, take a breath. It isn’t a copy of Australia’s beloved bridge – the truth is that the Americans built Hell Gate Bridge in 1916, more than 15 years before the Sydney Harbour Bridge was opened. The Hell Gate Bridge may have been first, but at 134 metres above the harbour, Sydney’s version is bigger, better… and more beautiful.†
†Statement may include bias.
Christ the Redeemer, Rio de Janeiro
Copycat: Christ the King, Lisbon
Standing tall over the mountainous coast of Rio de Janeiro, Christ the Redeemer may only be the fifth largest statue of Jesus in the world, but it is certainly the most famous. A wonder of the world, the dramatic, art deco Redeemer statue is much loved by Brazilians and tourists alike. In fact, the Portuguese loved the monument so much that in 1959 they erected their own ‘Cristo’ to overlook the capital city, Lisbon. The statue was erected as an expression of gratitude for the city being spared the effects of World War II. Much like the Redeemer in Rio, the King in Lisbon can be seen from miles around. If you want to truly experience just how enormous it is, a ferry trip to the south bank of the Tagus River is a must.
Eiffel Tower, Paris
Copycat: Eiffel Tower, Las Vegas
If you thought the Eiffel Tower was one-of-a-kind, you’d be wrong. The Eiffel Tower is so admired that you can find a replica of some kind just about anywhere in the world. In China, there are five reproductions of the iconic French monument alone! They say nothing comes close to the original, but if we had to pick one, it would have to be the Eiffel Tower replica in Las Vegas. While Sin City’s copy of the Parisian classic may only be half the size, it definitely packs a punch, especially at night time when it’s all lit up. The observation deck offers 360 degree views across Las Vegas, where you can see replicas of all of Paris’ most famous landmarks, from the Arc de Triomphe to the Louvre. The verdict? Vegas may be a shorter flight from Oz than Paris but, when it comes to romance, we think the original can’t be beaten.
The Parthenon, Athens
Copycat: The Parthenon, Nashville
The Parthenon Nashville, TN The Parthenon stands proudly as the centerpiece of Centennial Park, Nashville's premier urban park. The re-creation of the 42-foot statue Athena is the focus of the Parthenon just as it was in ancient Greece. The building and the Athena statue are both full-scale replicas of the Athenian originals. Originally built for Tennessee's 1897 Centennial Exposition, this replica of the Parthenon in Athens, Greece serves as a monument to what is considered the pinnacle of classical architecture. The plaster replicas of the Parthenon Marbles found in the Naos are direct casts of the original sculptures, which adorned the pediments of the Athenian Parthenon dating back to 438 B.C. The originals of these powerful fragments are housed in the British Museum in London. The Parthenon also serves as Nashville's art museum. The focus of the Parthenon's permanent collection is a group of 63 paintings by 19th and 20th century American artists donated by James M. Cowan. Additional gallery spaces provide a venue for a variety of temporary shows and exhibits.
A symbol of ancient Greece, democracy and western civilisation, the Parthenon temple sits high above the Acropolis in Athens and is easily one of the world’s most impressive cultural monuments. In Nashville, TN, an industrious group of Tennesseans sought to borrow some ancient wonder from the Greeks, building their own Parthenon as part of the Tennessee Centennial Exposition in 1897. There’s no denying the beauty of the aged Parthenon in Athens, but if you’re keen to see what it looked like in its glory days, then the version in Nashville is worth a visit. Great care has been taken to ensure the architecture and colours match the original as much as possible and the whole building is extremely close in likeness. Inside, you can even view exact replicas of the Parthenon Marbles cast from the original sculptures.
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