Mankind has learned to build dams for a long time. For example, about a hundred years old the excavations have been conducted near the Turkish village of Aladjahueuk. Scientists are looking for the capital of the kingdom of the Hittites. But only there was discovered a dam, which was built 3250 years ago. It was covered with layers of mud and mud. It was possible to restore it, as a result today the dam again serves, helping to irrigate the local farmers with their land.
This place began to enjoy the interest of tourists. They are all attracted by one of the oldest hydraulic structures on Earth. But this dam is not the only one that causes interest in people. After all, such facilities often not only help to generate electricity or irrigate the surrounding land, but they still act as a full-fledged tourist complex.
Not surprisingly, there are more than a dozen grandiose dams in the world where visitors with sightseeing tours are allowed. The most striking example is the Hoover Dam, one of the largest in the world. It turns out that its maintenance and services pay off well at the expense of curious tourists. We will tell below about the most interesting dams on our planet.
This facility is located 48 kilometers from Las Vegas, in the United States. Here tourists are allowed to go freely, you only need to buy a ticket cost from $ 9 to 11 dollars. The annual dam receives at least 9 million guests. This building in the state of Nevada in general is one of the main attractions of America. The construction of the facility began in 1931, when the country was experiencing the Great Depression. Then there was a tradition to assign the names of the Presidents to the largest dams. So this dam was named in honor of the country’s governor Herbert Hoover. Some works in the construction of the dam occurred in the tunnels. There, several workers even suffered from carbon monoxide. But this did not stop numerous people wishing to take part in the grandiose construction. After all, at that time of the crisis there were not so many opportunities for earnings. The dam was solemnly opened in 1935, for two whole years ahead of schedule. It is interesting that in the same year our writers Ilf and Petrov visited it, describing the grandiose structure in his book “One-storied America”. The Hoover Dam was designed by the Los Angeles architect Gordon Kaufman. At the same time, his work was sustained in the Art Deco style. In the uppermost part of the dam towers were built, in the same place were two pairs of hours. They are still working, showing the time in different time zones of the states of Nevada and Colorado. The Hoover Dam is so famous that it has often been involved in filming. So, it can be seen in the “Transformers” and in the “Universal Soldier”. Did not ignore this building and the creators of computer games.
In Turkish Urfa, you can visit this building for only 4 lira. When you fly on an airplane over the territory of this country, you can see a large salt lake in the porthole, which has a rather badly cut coastline. If you look closely at it, then in its southern part you can find a large dam. It was she who received the name of Ataturk, the first President of Turkey. In his honor in the country in general is called a lot of things. The construction of the grandiose structure began in 1983, it lasted for 7 years. The construction of the dam became one of the parts of the large-scale project “South-Eastern Antalya”. According to him, as many as 22 dams were to be erected on the rivers Tigris and Euphrates. The biggest of them was the Atatürk dam. Its construction turned out to be so important for the country that the government decided to relocate residents of dozens of villages that found themselves in the zone of a future artificial lake. It was just the result of erecting a dam. The lake eventually absorbed the ruins of the old town of Samosata, the home of the Greek poet Lucian. Today, the Atatürk dam successfully performs its functions – generates electricity, irrigates the land and attracts numerous tourists.The importance of the object for Turkey is so great that it is the Hoover Dam that is depicted on a national banknote of 1 lira.
For 5 euros, any tourist can visit this facility, located in the Italian Lognarone. The valley of the river Piave, which is near the Tyrolean Alps, has been heard by people since the 30s of the XX century. It was then that the light was seen by Ernest Hemingway’s book “Farewell to Arms!”. During the battles of World War I, one of the Italian armies was stationed here, acting against the Austrians. In 1961, on the Piave River, the Wyonte Dam was built. Approaching it you can admire the excellent view of the dam, as if clamped by the neighboring mountains. The dam received “bad” fame when in 1963 one of the biggest accidents in the history of hydraulic engineering facilities took place here. Then more than 3 thousand people died. The cause of the misfortune was a fragment of the rock from Mount Monte Tots. He fell directly into the reservoir. His cup was overcrowded because of pieces of rock. The water poured over the top of the dam, and a swift stream washed away the nearest villages in a matter of minutes. Eyewitnesses, whoever saw the catastrophe with their own eyes, did not remain at all. Since then, the reservoir behind the dam has not been restored. In 2001, about the catastrophe was even filmed feature film “Viyont – the madness of people.” A year later the dam opened to tourists.
At the border of Paraguay and Brazil, in Foz do Iguaçu is this object. You can visit it by paying $ 20 to $ 50. In the 80s of the last century in Brazil, the issue of energy resources shortage became acute. The government adopted the concept of development, according to which water flows became important sources of energy. Many have long talked about the need to build a powerful dam on the Paraná River. It was not clear where to build it. As a result, it was chosen a good place – where Parana left under the ground. The breed here could withstand the enormous weight of future concrete structures. Although the border between Brazil and Paraguay was passing through this place, numerous negotiations concluded with the agreement on the joint construction of the dam. As it later turned out, both states have only benefited from such cooperation. As a result, the Itaipu Dam today provides electricity for the largest cities in Brazil – Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. 93% of all energy needs in Paraguay are produced here. The power of Itaipu is enough to light 120 million light bulbs at the same time. But this dam was not protected from the accident. In 2009, during a thunderstorm, power lines were severely damaged. As a result, virtually all Paraguay and 50 million inhabitants of neighboring Brazil remained without light. Tourists come here from any side of the border. The route of a special bus here lasts an hour and a half. During this time, tourists can see in it a huge spillway, visit the observation deck near the turbines and drive up to the concrete wall of the dam, the height of the eight-storey building.
Three Gorges Dam.
If you go to Chinese Sandoupin, be sure to visit this dam. The price of admission ticket is 57-105 yuan. The fact that the Yangtze River should be built dam, said since 1919. But then the scales of construction scared the authors of the project. In 1956, in his poem “Swimming”, the great Mao Zedong talked about the dam project on the great Yangtze River. But it was not until 1992 that China set about erecting a dam on it and a hydropower plant of the same name. The construction lasted a long 19 years, and the erected hydroelectric power station became the most powerful in the world. All the time, while the dam was being built, there were endless disputes of opponents and supporters of this object around it. The plus of its construction is a huge amount of energy produced for the country. But China, with its billion people, needs it very much. In addition, the dam significantly reduced the threat of floods. Only in the last century the rapid floods of the Yangtze have caused the death of half a million people.Supporters say that the dam will also clean up the water. Although the advantages of the construction of the facility are obvious, but they will softly console those 1.3 million Chinese who had to move to other places of residence.
To visit this famous Egyptian dam you will have to pay 5 pounds in national currency. The first small dam in this place was built in the distant 1902 by the British. In 1912 and 1933 the construction was completed. However, it still was not able to fully retain the waters of the mighty Nile. In 1952 it was decided to erect a new dam – the Aswan. But this big project of the country’s President Gamal Nasser did not like the United States. As a result, the World Bank refused to finance Egyptians. The government of the USSR saved the situation. The project of the Aswan Dam was developed in 1958 at the Hydroproject Institute, and a couple of years later construction began. It was partially sponsored by the Soviet Union. About the glorious cooperation of the two countries today resembles a memorial tower, in the form of a lotus flower. The dam was erected for 11 years, during this time, works were also carried out to save monuments of antiquity caught in the zone of future flooding. Only the temples of Abu Simbel were dismantled and transferred to a new, safe place for four years. Today, the Aswan Dam is still functioning, it supplies energy to most of the country. The reservoir formed is used for irrigation, and the dam still acts as a tourist site. On it you can not only walk with a tour, but even ride a car. On the very ridge of the dam lies the road in four lanes.
Nagarjuna Dam Sagar.
It is necessary to go here from the nearest Indian city of Nalgonda. Visiting will cost the tourist 350-450 rupees. In the 1940s, India was overwhelmed by the Green Revolution. Its goal was to improve agriculture in the country. The largest, and also the first, object of infrastructure changes was the construction of the Nagarjuna Sagar dam on the full river Krishna. Construction began in 1955, he was personally approved by the then Prime Minister of India, Jawaharlal Nehru. But the dam was opened in 14 years by his daughter Indira. Since that time, the dam every day gives vital water for irrigation of several large regions of the country. The power station created here is also an important member of the national energy network. Those tourists who want to visit Andhra Pradesh will be not only interested in the Nagarjuna Sagar Dam, but also with an artificial lake with the same name. In its very center is the island of Nagarjukonda, where Buddhists come with pilgrimage. The reason for this attention of believers is that it was here 2200 years ago the founder of Mahayana Buddhism Acharya Nagarjuna created a religious school. Many monks from China, Ceylon and Bengal tried to get here. Here, on the island, there is a unique museum. Among other exhibits are religious relics – the earring of the Buddha himself and his tooth.
Dam of Inguri.
This dam is located in Georgia, in Jvari. You can get to the observation deck for free, but for the passage to the dam itself you will need a special permit. Personally, the Secretary General of the USSR Nikita Khrushchev took the decision to build a dam here. Initially, the leader proposed to erect a dam on the Bzyb River. But it turned out that this could lead to soil erosion on the beach in Pitsunda, the favorite place of rest for the leader. He did not sacrifice the famous health resort, and the construction of the dam was decided to begin in the beautiful gorge of the Inguri River. The project began in 1961. The collapse of the USSR led to a scandal around this object. The Georgian-Abkhaz conflict and the settlement of the border led to the fact that the line between the countries passed right next to the dam. She herself was on the side of Georgia, but Abkhazia got power generators and other equipment.In 1992, the countries still managed to agree on how to divide the electricity produced. 60% of it goes to Georgia, and the rest goes to Abkhazia. The Inguri hydroelectric power station still remains a regime facility, where it is rather difficult to get there.
Dam of Robert Burass.
This Canadian dam can be visited absolutely free of charge. The name of the object was given by the new Prime Minister of Canada Robert Burassa. A year after his arrival in 1970, he began the construction of three hydroelectric power plants on the La Grande River. This decision was not only a step towards providing the country with cheap electricity, but the politician also fulfilled his promise to create one hundred thousand new jobs. Such a large-scale construction, during which a whole cascade of several dams appeared, attracted many different specialists. Almost the main difficulty in the construction is the remoteness of the site from the sites and the poor transport security in these places. But this also faded in comparison with the fact that the resistance was exerted by the Indian tribes who had lived on these lands from time immemorial. In November 1973, the representatives of the Crees even managed to stop the construction of the dam. Only two years later the works were continued. In another 4 years, La-Grad-2 was launched. It stretches for 140 kilometers underground, becoming the largest underground station. And the name of Robert Burass reservoir and dam received in 1996. Thanks to him, the plans became a reality. Today, any tourists coming here can see the whole scale of the dam. The height of the dam is the same as a skyscraper with 53 floors. Water drains into the storehouse along ten huge steps. Each of them is twice the size of the football field.
The first country in colonial Africa, which gained independence, was in 1957 Ghana. Then all of its industry was guided by the cultivation and sale of cocoa beans. But the production had to be developed in order to give an impetus to the economy. Some prospects promised bauxite mining, which could in the future give aluminum. To provide electricity to future metallurgical plants of the country, and it was decided to build a dam Akosombo. At its erection it was not without investments of England and the USA. The very government of the country simply did not have the necessary means to launch such an expensive project. Under the terms of the contract with the partners, Ghana herself could use no more than 20% of the electricity received. In 1965, the dam was launched, and most of the electricity was generated for the American aluminum company Volta. But Ghana over time revised these predatory terms of the contract. Now the electricity received is sufficient for the neighbors of the country – Togo and Benin. The dam formed an artificial lake Volta. Now these places are very popular with tourists. Visiting the dam itself costs only about a dollar, but the Volta Hotel, from whose windows you can observe the dam, is quite expensive. The night in this hotel costs not less than 150 dollars.
Dam of Verzaska.
In one of Bond’s latest films, there is a scene in which super-agent James Bond jumps from a 200-meter-high dam. These shots were filmed in Switzerland in the Ticino area. It is there that the dam of Verzaska is located, which by the efforts of the screenwriter became a Soviet dam near Arkhangelsk. These frames became legendary and laid the beginning of a curious tradition. Every year from April to October, jumpers from all over the world come to the dam. All of them are motivated by a single goal – to repeat the same jump of James Bond. Do not stop them, and the fact that the jump from 220 meters height with a tarson attached to the legs here is paid. For the pleasure will have to pay 255 Swiss francs. Register for the same dangerous jump in a few weeks. Free fall from the dam lasts 6 seconds, after which the body of the jumper, with the help of a tourniquet, fires back up. If tourists are not so fond of extreme entertainment, then they can inspect the dam from the observation deck.There is clearly seen the concrete massif of the dam and the valley with the same name. If you pass along the dam 380 meters, you can get to the other side of the gorge. This pleasure is worthless.
The natural dam built by the beavers.
This object is located in the Wood Buffalo National Park. The natural dam built by the beavers was discovered several years ago by the ecologist Jean Thieu. He could do it using the Google Earth program and the technologies that NASA developed. It turned out that the animals were able to build a 850-meter dam located in the province of Alberta, in Canada. Ecologist came to the conclusion that the beavers began to work on their dam in the 70’s, the construction does not stop there. To build their dam, industrious animals knocked down thousands of trees and trained several tons of branches and clay here. It should be noted that the site for creating the dam was chosen by the beavers very well. The object is in the most abandoned corner of this park. So animals protected themselves from constant and intrusive guests who dream to inspect and photograph the dam. As a result, today the dam can be seen only in the form of pictures on the Google Planet Earth website or from the air. Inspection of the park and dam on a helicopter or an airplane will cost the tourist at least $ 79, and order a trip in advance on the website of the transport company.