The 2022 Watch spotlights 25 heritage sites of extraordinary significance, facing pressing challenges, and where World Monuments Fund’s partnership with local communities has the potential to make a meaningful difference.


The 2022 open call resulted in more than 225 nominations that underwent extensive internal and external review by the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) and an independent panel of international heritage experts responsible for the final selection.

Representing 24 countries and spanning nearly 12,000 years of history, the 2022 Watch encompasses a broad range of examples of how global challenges manifest and intersect at heritage sites, providing opportunities to improve the lives of communities as they adapt for the future. 

Global Challenges

  • Climate change: As global warming continues to intensify, innovative methods as well as reinforcement of traditional knowledge are necessary to mitigate its impact on heritage places and help communities adapt.
  • Underrepresentation: Inequities in heritage result in oversight and neglect of many significant places.  Greater efforts should be made to amplify narratives that tell a more textured, just and complete story of humanity.
  • Imbalanced Tourism: Both overtourism and lack of visitation endanger heritage places and often sideline or disrupt local communities and their way of life. Sustainable tourism strategies are needed to recalibrate the impact of tourism and ensure just outcome for local communities.
  • Crisis Recovery: Armed conflict, natural disaster, and other types of destruction can cause irreparable damage to heritage places and communities. Community-led preservation efforts can participate in building resilience and regenerating the social fabric in places affected by crisis.

2022 Watch Sites

Former dormitory, modified in the 1980s, 2021.
Active Project

Kinchela Aboriginal Boys Training Home

Kinchela, Australia
A survivor-led effort seeks to transform a former government institution for Aboriginal boys forcibly taken from their families into a place of truth-telling and healing.
Active Project

La Maison du Peuple, Ouagadougou

Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso
An important landmark and unique example of African modernism in Burkina Faso requires rehabilitation to enhance public life and foster civic pride.
Shaitgumbad (Sixty Dome) mosque, 2020.

Mosque City of Bagerhat

Bagerhat, Bangladesh
The religious landscape of ancient Khalifatabad requires climate adaptation to ensure its survival and continued service to the Bagerhat community.


Indian Church Village, Belize
An international tourist destination encompassing an ancient Maya city requires a more inclusive heritage management plan to help reinforce the relationship between the site and local residents.
Main panel of rock paintings from the Serra da Lua site at Monte Alegre State Park, 2012.

Monte Alegre State Park

Prehistoric cave paintings in the Amazon are threatened by environmental degradation and call for improved stewardship that engages and benefits nearby communities.
Aerial view of fortified manor of Shaoanzhuang, 2020.

Fortified Manors of Yongtai

Fujian, China
Fortified family homes in remote southeast China present an opportunity for rural revitalization, community-led environmental management, and sustainable tourism.
Temple of Seti I in Abydos, Egypt.
Active Project


Tourism and encroachment at one of Ancient Egypt’s most important sites require technical expertise and careful planning to support sustainable preservation.
View of Hurst Castle. Photo courtesy of ExploringWithin on YouTube.
Active Project

Hurst Castle

Lymington, United Kingdom
A fortress built by Henry VIII that suffered partial collapse in 2021 illustrates the urgent need to address the impact of climate change on coastal heritage through continued monitoring.
Active Project

Asante Traditional Buildings

Near Kumasi, Ashanti Region, Ghana
Sacred earthen shrines, among the last architectural vestiges of the Kingdom of Asante, face ongoing deterioration that call for new approaches to management and maintenance.
Praingu Matualang Village, view of two revitalized, main sacred houses, 2018.
Active Project

Sumba Island

The sacred houses of the Sumbanese people will be lost without community-led training in the traditional knowledge necessary to maintain these structures and their layers of symbolic meaning.
Chinese New Year celebrations, 2020.
Active Project

Tiretta Bazaar

Kolkata, India
India’s earliest Chinatown is home to minority communities seeking recognition for their history and urban revitalization to support their way of life.
Bunong villagers from Bu Cheeng calling the spirits in front of their altar (filled with gifts) in  the context of the wer-brii-wer-nam ritual, Bu Sra area, 2019.

Cultural Landscape of the Bunong People

Mondulkiri Province, Cambodia
Mapping and documentation of heritage places can support the Bunong people’s struggle to protect ancestral land from agro-industrial development and encroachment.
Building in the Fouad Boutros Heritage Corridor after the blast, 2020.

Heritage Buildings of Beirut

The vibrant coastal city of Beirut, devastated by the blast of August 2020, needs further recovery support to protect and rehabilitate the historic buildings essential to its identity.
Benghazi's historic town hall, built during the Ottoman era and later expanded under Italian colonization, 2021.

Benghazi Historic City Center

Benghazi, Libya
Revival of an important public square in war-ravaged Benghazi can catalyze recovery efforts and serve as a symbol of community-driven urban resilience.
View of the Koagannu cemetery, 2014.

Koagannu Mosques and Cemetery

A historic waterfront cemetery with distinct coral-stone architecture is threatened by rapidly rising seas and highlights the urgency of the climate crisis and the need for adaptive preservation solutions.
Active Project


San Juan Teotihuacan, Mexico
More inclusive tourism planning and visitor management at an iconic archaeological park can help address economic challenges facing surrounding communities.
A stone carved Hiti still giving water round the clock, 2021.
Active Project

Hitis (Water Fountains) of the Kathmandu Valley

Kathmandu Valley, Nepal
An extensive system of historic water distribution points and underground channels needs maintenance to ensure that local communities have reliable access to clean water.
Sikri red sandstone with white marble inlay of the western facade of the tomb, 2021.

Tomb of Jahangir

Lahore, Pakistan
The only imperial Mughal tomb in Pakistan requires restoration to foster new visitation and provide invaluable greenspace for community recreation within an expanding urban setting.
Entrance to the Huaquis town in the Yanacancha-Huaquis Cultural Landscape of Peru, 2021.
Active Project

Yanacancha-Huaquis Cultural Landscape

Miraflores District, Peru
Ancient pre-Inca water management systems and sustainable tourism planning are crucial for an Andean community to adapt to climate change and provide local economic benefit.
The Kushite pyramids of Nuri, 2020.


Royal pyramids of the ancient Kingdom of Kush threatened by environmental factors require renewed management strategies and conservation interventions to prevent further deterioration.
Welcome to Africatown sign, 2019. Courtesy of The Birmingham Times.


Mobile, Alabama, United States
A historic Alabama community established by formerly enslaved Africans is seeking support to leverage a recent archaeological discovery to protect their homes and call for environmental justice.
Local parade in Brownsville, Texas, 2020.
Active Project

Garcia Pasture

Brownsville, Texas, United States
The traditional territory of the Carrizo Comecrudo Tribe of Texas threatened by natural resource extraction and desecration of ancestral lands requires formal legal recognition to ensure its future.
Tourists camel trekking in the mountainous interior of Soqotra, 2020.

Soqotra Archipelago

The Soqotri people seek to protect and promote their identity through cultural mapping and inventory of their rich heritage across the island of Soqotra.
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Safeguarding the Irreplaceable

The World Monuments Watch is a nomination based process that galvanizes individuals, communities, and leaders from across the public and private sectors to come together around global issues affecting heritage sites and sets the future direction of WMF’s field work.


Since 1996, WMF has contributed over $110 million to projects at more than 300 Watch sites and helped communities leverage an additional $300 million from other sources.

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