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10 Unique Staircases From Around the World

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Posted by Rosemary O'Brien on May 6th, 2014

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1. Masonic Initiation Well in Quinta da Regaleira, Sintra - Portugal

This winding stone staircase can be found at the palace known as the "Palace of Monteiro the Millionaire", from the nickname of its first owner, Antonio Augusto Carvalho Monteiro. The two Initian wells, descend into the ground like underground towers lined with stone stairs. These wells do not serve as water sources, but were actually for recreational use, to connect to various caves or monuments around the park.

2. Sagrada Familia Steps

Designed by Catalan architect Gaudi over 120 years ago, the Sagrada Familia towers over the city of Barcelona. The architecture of the building has been a major influence on many forms and techniques that were used for the development of modern construction in the 20th century.

3. The Spanish Steps

When in Rome! The Spanish steps is an iconic spot for travellers to gather and enjoy the city. But It wasn't until 1935 in the film Roman Holiday, starring Audrey Hepburn that made the steps famous to American audiences.

4. Bramante Staircase

This Double Helix staircase was designed by Giuseppe Momo in 1932 and inspired and named after an original spiral staircase designed by Donato Bramante. The Bramante Staircase can be found at the Vatican.

5. San Francisco Mosaic Staircase

Tucked away in San Francisco, This mosaic steps project has been a neighborhood effort to create a beautiful mosaic staircase along side the cities rolling hills. There are 163 steps to climb.

6. Machu Picchu

One of the oldest man made steps is located at Machu Picchu "Old Peak" in Peru. Machu Picchu stands 2,340 m above sea level, overlooking mountain forest, with extraordinary views.

7. Santorini Steps

In 1715, the greeks built a hillside staircase in the city of Oia on the island of Santorini. The staircase is so steep that most passengers lift their cargo and take a donkey ride from the top of the cliff to bottom.

8. Philadelphia Rocky Stairs

Before you enter the Philadelphia Museum of Art, you must climb 72 stone steps. These steps became widely known and mimicked after the movie Rocky, where the main character Rocky runs up the steps to the song Gonna Fly Now.

9. Pacific Rim National Park

This beautiful trail goes through the rainforest in British Columbia. Temperate forests can be found all over the world, however temperate rain forests like the Pacific Rim only occur in a few regions around the world.

10. City Staircases

Fire escape staircases can always be found alongside city apartment buildings, creating a unique urban landscape. And one of the first fire escapes was invented in 18th-century England.