10. Pena National Palace, Portugal

Pena national palace can be located in the hills of Sintra in Portugal. In 1493 Portuguese King John II built a monastery and it was protected for centuries one king after another. But it as severely damages by 1755’s Lisbon earthquake. King Ferdinand II transform those ruins in to beautiful palace – Pena national palace.

The construction was took place between 1842-1850. The Romanticism style was used for construction of this palace. This beautiful palace is listed on UNESCO’s world heritage sites. The popular monument of Portugal also can seen from far away places in clear sky days.

The Pena Palace is a Romanticist castle in São Pedro de Penaferrim, in the municipality of Sintra, Portugal. The castle stands on the top of a hill in the Sintra Mountains above the town of Sintra, and on a clear day it can be easily seen from Lisbon and much of its metropolitan area. It is a national monument and constitutes one of the major expressions of 19th-century Romanticism in the world. The palace is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the Seven Wonders of Portugal. It is also used for state occasions by the President of the Portuguese Republic and other government officials.

The castle’s history started in the Middle Ages when a chapel dedicated to Our Lady of Pena was built on the top of the hill above Sintra. According to tradition, construction occurred after an apparition of the Virgin Mary.

In 1493, King John II, accompanied by his wife Queen Leonor, made a pilgrimage to the site to fulfill a vow. His successor, King Manuel I, was also very fond of this sanctuary, and ordered the construction of a monastery on this site which was donated to the Order of Saint Jerome. For centuries Pena was a small, quiet place for meditation, housing a maximum of eighteen monks.

In the 18th century the monastery was severely damaged by lightning. However, it was the Great Lisbon Earthquake of 1755, occurring shortly afterwards, that took the heaviest toll on the monastery, reducing it to ruins. Nonetheless, the chapel (and its works of marble and alabaster attributed to Nicolau Chanterene) escaped without significant damage.

9. Schonbrunn Palace, Vienna

One of the most popular cultural monument of Vienna, the name meant for ‘beautiful spring’. The palace was built between 1696 – 1712, commissioned by Emperor Leopold I.

This great palace have 1441 different rooms. The sculpted garden in front of Schonbrunn palace also make this site more beautiful. The Austrian 10 Euro coin minted back in 2003 put this great palace at one side. Today millions of tourists visited Schonbrunn palace in every year.

Schönbrunn Palace is a former imperial summer residence located in Vienna, Austria. The 1,441-room Baroque palace is one of the most important architectural, cultural, and historical monuments in the country. Since the mid-1950s it has been a major tourist attraction. The history of the palace and its vast gardens spans over 300 years, reflecting the changing tastes, interests, and aspirations of successive Habsburg monarchs.

In the year 1569, Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian II purchased a large floodplain of the Wien river beneath a hill, situated between Meidling and Hietzing, where a former owner, in 1548, had erected a mansion called Katterburg. The emperor ordered the area to be fenced and put game there such as pheasants, ducks, deer and boar, in order to serve as the court’s recreational hunting ground. In a small separate part of the area, «exotic» birds such as turkeys and peafowl were kept. Fishponds were built, too.

During the next century, the area was used as a hunting and recreation ground. Especially Eleonora Gonzaga, who loved hunting, spent much time there and was bequeathed the area as her widow’s residence after the death of her husband, Ferdinand II. From 1638 to 1643, she added a palace to the Katterburg mansion, while in 1642 came the first mention of the name «Schönbrunn» on an invoice. The origins of the Schönbrunn orangery seem to go back to Eleonora Gonzaga as well. The Schönbrunn Palace in its present form was built and remodelled in 1740–50s during the reign of empress Maria Theresa who received the estate as a wedding gift. Franz I commissioned the redecoration of the palace exterior in neoclassical style as it appears today.

8. Mysore Palace, India

Located in the city of Mysore, Known as city of palaces, in South India. Mysore palace was built by different kings in different centuries. The first part of this palace was built in 14th century by Wodeyar kings, constructed multiple times by following generations. The modification and construction of new parts of current Mysore palace was took place between 1897-1912.

A mixture of Indo-Saracenic, Hindu, Muslim, Rajput and Gothic styles of architecture used for construction of palace. It was also surrounded by large garden, illuminated by more than 10000 bulbs during dasara festival in the month of September.

The Palace of Mysore is a historical palace in the city of Mysore in Karnataka, southern India. It is the official residence and seat of the Wodeyars — the rulers of Mysore, the royal family of Mysore, who ruled the princely state from 1399 to 1950. The palace houses two durbar halls (ceremonial meeting halls of the royal court) and incorporates an array of courtyards, gardens, and buildings. The palace is in the central region of inner Mysore, facing the Chamundi Hills eastward.

Mysore is commonly described as the City of Palaces. There are about seven palaces inclusive of this; however, Mysore Palace refers specifically to the one within the Old Fort. Built by the Maharaja Rajarshi His Highness Krishnarajendra Wadiyar IV, Mysore Palace is now one of the most famous tourist attractions in India, after the Taj Mahal, with more than 6 million annual visitors.

Krishnaraja Wadiyar III was Maharaja from 1799 to 1831. After the death of Tipu Sultan he made Mysore his capital in May 1799 and focused on education, religious sites and donating jewels to temples including Melkote. Chamaraja Wodeyar IX was crowned on March 25, 1881. He was anointed king on the date fixed by the Governor-General. He is credited with founding India’s first democratic institutions -«Prajapratinidhi Sabhe» with the Mysore representative assembly in 1881. Nalwadi Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV was Maharaja from 1902 to 1940. He was also called the Saint King-«Rajarshi» by Mahatma Gandhi. Assisted by dewans Sir M. Visvesvaraya and Sir Mirza Ismail, he changed Mysore by adding Asia’s first hydro electric project at Shivanasamudra, the KRS dam and the University of Mysore in 1916. Jayachamaraja Wodeyar was the twenty fifth and the last king, reigning from 1940 to 1950, when he agreed to merge the state with the union of India. A musicologist and a philanthropist, he was named Raj Parmukh of Mysore from Jan 26, 1950, a post he held for six years. The present Maharaja is Yaduveer Wadiyar, who was adopted by his aunt.

7. Summer Palace, China

Summer palace covers an area of 2.9 kilometers in the city of Beijing in China. It was constructed in 1750 as a resting place for imperial rulers of China, later it became main residence of them. At first this palace is known as Qingyi garden and renamed as summer palace after the reconstruction in 1888.

There are 3000 man made ancient structures within compound of palace. The royal garden and natural beauty of surrounding places make it as one of main historical sites in China.

The Summer Palace, is a vast ensemble of lakes, gardens and palaces in Beijing, China. It serves as a popular tourist destination and recreational park. Mainly dominated by Longevity Hill and Kunming Lake, it covers an expanse of 2.9 square kilometres (1.1 sq mi), three-quarters of which is water.

Longevity Hill is about 60 metres (200 feet) high and has many buildings positioned in sequence. The front hill is rich with splendid halls and pavilions, while the back hill, in sharp contrast, is quiet with natural beauty. The central Kunming Lake, covering 2.2 square kilometres (540 acres), was entirely man-made and the excavated soil was used to build Longevity Hill.

In December 1998, UNESCO included the Summer Palace on its World Heritage List. It declared the Summer Palace «a masterpiece of Chinese landscape garden design. The natural landscape of hills and open water is combined with artificial features such as pavilions, halls, palaces, temples and bridges to form a harmonious ensemble of outstanding aesthetic value».

6. Topkapi Palace, Turkey

Topkapi Palace Istanbul, Turkey

The construction of Topkapi palace was took place in 1453 by King Sultan Mehmed II in Istanbul. The palace used as a residents for sultans and place for hosting judicial and executive functions. The palace covers vast area of 173 acres, protected by huge walls.

Topkapi palace was continued to modified centuries after centuries. The minarets and domes remains as remarkable sight of this palace.

The Topkapı Palace or the Seraglio is a large palace in Istanbul, Turkey that was one of the major residences of the Ottoman sultans for almost 400 years (1465–1856) of their 624-year reign.

As well as a royal residence, the palace was a setting for state occasions and royal entertainments. It is now a museum and as such a major tourist attraction. It also contains important relics of the Muslim world, including Muhammed’s cloak and sword. The Topkapı Palace is among the monuments contained within the «Historic Areas of Istanbul», which became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1985, and is described under UNESCO’s criterion iv as «the best example of ensembles of palaces of the Ottoman period.»

The palace complex consists of four main courtyards and many smaller buildings. At its peak, the palace was home to as many as 4,000 people, and covered a large area with a long shoreline. It contained mosques, a hospital, bakeries, and a mint. Construction began in 1459, ordered by Sultan Mehmed II, the conqueror of Byzantine Constantinople. It was originally called the New Palace to distinguish it from the previous residence. It received the name «Topkapı» in the 19th century, after a gate and shore pavilion. The complex was expanded over the centuries, with major renovations after the 1509 earthquake and the 1665 fire.

5. Chateau de Chambord, France

Chateau de Chambord known for it’s French renaissance architecture, also the second most visited place in the country. This place was built as a hunting lodge for king Francois, constructed in between 1519-1547, never completed.

This palace features 440 rooms and 84 different fireplaces. The palace was surrounded by 52 square kilometers of wooded park. The king only spent 40 days in total within this palace, heat remains impractical within it’s rooms because of massive structure and open windows.

The royal Château de Chambord at Chambord, Loir-et-Cher, France, is one of the most recognizable châteaux in the world because of its very distinctive French Renaissance architecture which blends traditional French medieval forms with classical Renaissance structures. The building, which was never completed, was constructed by King Francis I of France.

Chambord is the largest château in the Loire Valley; it was built to serve as a hunting lodge for Francis I, who maintained his royal residences at the châteaux of Blois and Amboise. The original design of the Château de Chambord is attributed, though with some doubt, to Domenico da Cortona; Leonardo da Vinci may also have been involved.

Chambord was altered considerably during the twenty-eight years of its construction (1519–1547), during which it was overseen on-site by Pierre Nepveu. With the château nearing completion, Francis showed off his enormous symbol of wealth and power by hosting his old archrival, Emperor Charles V, at Chambord.

4. Palace Of Versailles, France

It is the most popular palace in France, located in Southwest region of Paris. It was built in 1624 by King Louis XIII as a hunting lodge. In 1682 king Louis XIV expanded it into a largest palace in the country, used as permanent residence.

Palace of Versailles features 700 rooms, 1200 fireplaces and 60 staircases. The huge garden of this palace covers an area of 2000 acres, contains 1400 fountains and mile long canal. The kings of France used this place as official residence until 1789.

The Palace of Versailles, Château de Versailles, or simply Versailles, is a royal château in Versailles in the Île-de-France region of France.

When the château was built, Versailles was a small village dating from the 11th century; today, however, it is a wealthy suburb of Paris, some 20 kilometres (12 miles) southwest of the centre of the French capital. Versailles was the seat of political power in the Kingdom of France from 1682, when Louis XIV moved the royal court from Paris, until the royal family was forced to return to the capital in October 1789, within three months after the beginning of the French Revolution. Versailles is therefore famous not only as a building, but as a symbol of the system of absolute monarchy of the Ancien Régime.

First built by Louis XIII in 1623, as a hunting lodge of brick and stone, the edifice was enlarged into a royal palace by Louis XIV. The first phase of the expansion was designed and supervised by the architect Louis Le Vau. It culminated in the addition of three new wings of stone, which surrounded Louis XIII’s original building on the north, south, and west. After Le Vau’s death in 1670, the work was taken over and completed by his assistant, François d’Orbay. Charles Le Brun designed and supervised the elaborate interior decoration, and André Le Nôtre landscaped the extensive Gardens of Versailles. Le Brun and Le Nôtre collaborated on the numerous fountains, and Le Brun supervised the design and installation of countless statues.

3. Alhambra Palace, Spain

Alhambra palace situated in city of Andalusia in Spain. The first part of this palace construction in 9th century, damaged and ignored for more than 2 centuries. It was renovated by Muhammad ben Al-Ahmar in 11th century, transformed into current palace by Sultan of Granada in 1333.

The whole sections of Alhambra palace were whitewashed, today it appears as reddish one because of centuries of baking in sunlight. As Alhambra place located at hilltop, can viewed from various part of the city.

The Alhambra, the complete Arabic form of which was Qalat Al-Hamra, is a palace and fortress complex located in Granada, Andalusia, Spain. It was originally constructed as a small fortress in AD 889 on the remains of Roman fortifications, and then largely ignored until its ruins were renovated and rebuilt in the mid-13th century by the Moorish emir Mohammed ben Al-Ahmar of the Emirate of Granada, who built its current palace and walls. It was converted into a royal palace in 1333 by Yusuf I, Sultan of Granada. After the conclusion of the Christian Reconquista in 1492, the site became the Royal Court of Ferdinand and Isabella, and the palaces were partially altered to Renaissance tastes. In 1526 Charles I & V commissioned a new Renaissance palace better befitting the Holy Roman Emperor in the revolutionary Mannerist style influenced by Humanist philosophy in direct juxtaposition with the Nasrid Andalusian architecture, but which was ultimately never completed due to Morisco rebellions in Granada.

Alhambra’s late flowering of Islamic palaces were built for the last Muslim emirs in Spain during the decline of the Nasrid dynasty who were increasingly subject to the Christian Kings of Castile. After being allowed to fall into disrepair for centuries, the buildings occupied by squatters, Alhambra was rediscovered following the defeat of Napoleon, who had conducted retaliatory destruction of the site, the re-discoverers were first British intellectuals and then other north European Romantic travelers. It is now one of Spain’s major tourist attractions, exhibiting the country’s most significant and well-known Islamic architecture, together with 16th-century and later Christian building and garden interventions. The Alhambra is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the inspiration for many songs and stories.

2. Potala Palace, China

Potala palace in one of the greatest monuments, located Lhasa city of People republic of China. This palace was named after mount potalaka, mythical dwelling of a Buddhist. The construction of this palace originally started in 7th century and transformed into today’s form in 1645 by spiritual advice of great fifth Dalai Lama.

The potala palace features most treasured Tibetan architectural marvels. The palace remained as tallest building in the world from 1653 to 1889, can see entire Lhasa from the roof of the palace, remained as symbol of Buddhism in Tibet.

The Potala Palace in Lhasa, Tibet Autonomous Region was the chief residence of the Dalai Lama until the 14th Dalai Lama fled to India during the 1959 Tibetan uprising. It is now a museum and World Heritage Site.

The palace is named after Mount Potalaka, the mythical abode of the bodhisattva Avalokiteśvara. The 5th Dalai Lama started its construction in 1645 after one of his spiritual advisers, Konchog Chophel, pointed out that the site was ideal as a seat of government, situated as it is between Drepung and Sera monasteries and the old city of Lhasa. It may overlay the remains of an earlier fortress called the White or Red Palace on the site, built by Songtsän Gampo in 637.

The building measures 400 metres east-west and 350 metres north-south, with sloping stone walls averaging 3 m. thick, and 5 m. thick at the base, and with copper poured into the foundations to help proof it against earthquakes. Thirteen stories of buildings—containing over 1,000 rooms, 10,000 shrines and about 200,000 statues—soar 117 metres on top of Marpo Ri, the «Red Hill», rising more than 300 m in total above the valley floor.

Tradition has it that the three main hills of Lhasa represent the «Three Protectors of Tibet». Chokpori, just to the south of the Potala, is the soul-mountain of Vajrapani, Pongwari that of Manjusri, and Marpori, the hill on which the Potala stands, represents Avalokiteśvara.

1. Forbidden City, China

Forbidden city is the world’s largest palace complex located in Beijing, China, also known as imperial palace and palace museum.This palace complex spread across an area of 72 hectares. Forbidden city features 980 buildings with 8707 different rooms. This palace complex was built between 1406 to 1420, to accommodate emperor Zhu Di.

Forbidden city housed 24 different Chinese emperor from 1420 to 1912. This complex was also decorated with stone animals, rails, arches and dragons. Until 1912 no one allows to enter this complex without having permission of the emperor. Forbidden city became UNESCO’s world heritage site in 1987, 10 millions of tourist visits this site every year.

The Forbidden City was the Chinese imperial palace from the Ming dynasty to the end of the Qing dynasty—the years 1420 to 1912. It is located in the centre of Beijing, China, and now houses the Palace Museum. It served as the home of emperors and their households as well as the ceremonial and political centre of Chinese government for almost 500 years.

Constructed from 1406 to 1420, the complex consists of 980 buildings and covers 72 ha. The palace complex exemplifies traditional Chinese palatial architecture, and has influenced cultural and architectural developments in East Asia and elsewhere. The Forbidden City was declared a World Heritage Site in 1987, and is listed by UNESCO as the largest collection of preserved ancient wooden structures in the world.

Since 1925, the Forbidden City has been under the charge of the Palace Museum, whose extensive collection of artwork and artifacts were built upon the imperial collections of the Ming and Qing dynasties. Part of the museum’s former collection is now located in the National Palace Museum in Taipei. Both museums descend from the same institution, but were split after the Chinese Civil War. With over 14.6 million annual visitors, the Palace Museum is the most visited art museum in the world.