Top 7 most dangerous structures in the world

The Leaning Tower of Pisa in Italy, an architectural wonder, is popularly regarded as one of the most dangerous buildings in the world. Can you think of any other structures which seem to be in great peril? They were purposely and skillfully constructed at the riskiest of locations or sometimes just had their appearance altered to reflect a sense of danger and awe.

The following are the top 10 most dangerous structures in the world.

 Hanging Temple, China

Hanging Temple, China, one of the 'top 10 most dangerous structures in the world' by

Hanging Temple, China []

The Hanging Temple, or Hanging Monastery, is a temple off a cliff (about 75 meters or 246 feet above the ground) near Mount Heng in Hunyuan County, China’s Shanxi Province. The construction was built during the Northern Wei Dynasty (386-557), and has a history of more than 1,400 years.

It is the only existing temple for Buddhism, Taoism and Confucianism in China. The construction counts over 40 halls and more than 80 Buddhist sculptures made of bronze, iron, stone and mud.

The scientifically designed and skillfully built Xuankong Temple is described as “odd, hovering and wonderful.” Completely constructed on the mountain cliff, it seems that the wood-structure temple is supported by the beams inserted into chiseled holes in the cliff, but in fact some of the beams don’t bear its load at all.

Lichtenstein Castle, Germany

Lichtenstein Castle, Germany, one of the 'top 10 most dangerous structures in the world' by

Lichtenstein Castle, Germany []

Lichtenstein Castle is situated on a cliff located near Honau in the Swabian Alb, Baden-Württemberg, Germany, at an altitude of 817 meters. Historically there was an old castle present on the site since around 1200. It fell to ruins after being destroyed during the Reichskriegs war of 1311 and by the city-state of Reutlingen in 1381. The current Neo-Gothic-style castle was built by Duke Wilhelm of Urach in 1840-42. Today, the castle is still owned by the Dukes of Urach, but its doors are open to visitors. The castle contains a large collection of historic weapons and armor.

Takasugi-an, Japan

Takasugi-an, Japan, one of the 'top 10 most dangerous structures in the world' by

Takasugi-an, Japan []

Takasugi-an literally translates as “a teahouse [built] too high.” Located in Nagano, Japan, the teahouse was built atop two chestnut trees, cut from a nearby mountain and transported to the site. Architect Terunobu Fujimori designed and built this single-room structure for his own use. It is accessible only by free-standing ladders propped up against one of the trees and features an interior covered with plaster and bamboo mats.

Astra Tower, Germany

Astra Tower, Germany, one of the 'top 10 most dangerous structures in the world' by

Astra Tower, Germany []

Built in the mid-13th century, the Astra Tower is a church in Hamburg, Germany. Its 27.43-meter(90-feet)-high spire made from oak, was added to the structure in 1450. Since then, the spire began to tilt because of the oak material and their wet foundations. Great efforts were made until the spire was finally fastened in 1996. Today the church is still in use and open to the public as a tourist site.

Sutyagin House, Russia

Sutyagin House, Russia, one of the 'top 10 most dangerous structures in the world' by

Sutyagin House, Russia []

Sutyagin House was a wooden house built by Russian businessman Nikolai Petrovich Sutyagin over a time-span of 15 years (starting in 1992). Even though the building had only two stories, the roof spanned 11-15 stories more, making it the world’s, or at least Russia’s, highest wooden house. In 2008, the tower was condemned a fire hazard and part of it was pulled down by the local government. The remaining four-storey structure ironically burned to the ground on May 6, 2012.

Meteora Monasteries, Greece

Meteora Monasteries, Greece, one of the 'top 10 most dangerous structures in the world' by

Meteora Monasteries, Greece []

Meteora literally means “hovering in the air” in Greek. The Meteora Monasteries are a cluster of medieval monasteries, and one of the largest and most important complexes of Eastern Orthodox monasteries in Greece. Located atop towering natural rock pillars, 24 monasteries were constructed during the 15th century despite incredible difficulties. Now there are six of them still in use. Until little under a hundred years ago, people could only reach the steep cliffs in a hanging basket or by climbing flimsy rope ladders. Today, they can be easily accessed through roads, steps and bridges.

Leaning Tower of Pisa, Italy

Leaning Tower of Pisa, Italy, one of the 'top 10 most dangerous structures in the world' by

Leaning Tower of Pisa, Italy []

The world-famous Leaning Tower of Pisa ranks second on this list. It is a bell tower of the Cathedral of the Italian city of Pisa, known for its unintended tilt to one side. The construction of the tower began in 1173. However, only five or six years later, the tower began to tilt to the southeast, caused by an inadequate ground foundation – basically one that proved too soft on one side. Upon its completion in 1372, the tower was only bowing down some 4.5 feet downwards. As time passed by, the angle of the 16,000-ton tower has become more precarious.

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