MANILA, Philippines—Here’s one list the country would be proud to be on for a change.
The Department of Foreign Affairs is calling on Filipinos worldwide to vote for the heritage city of Vigan, Ilocos Sur, in the New7Wonders Cities campaign, a global competition initiated by Swiss nonprofit New7Wonders Foundation.
The foundation, which aims to protect and preserve the world’s manmade and natural heritage, is the same organization that named Puerto Princesa one of the world’s New7Wonders of Nature in 2011.
“The heritage city of Vigan has qualified as one of the Top 28 places and the lone candidate from the Philippines in the search for the New7Wonders Cities,” the Philippine Embassy in Washington said in a statement on Saturday.
Vigan, a Unesco World Heritage site popular for its well-preserved blocks of Spanish era houses, made the short list of finalists in October last year following a screening of more than 1,200 nominees from 220 countries.
In announcing the finalists, New7Wonders Foundation founding president Bernard Weber noted the selection to be “particularly exciting in its variety.”
“This outstanding short list of 28 cities mirrors the diversity of urban society, especially when, for the first time in history, more than half of our planet’s population live in cities. Going forward, the New7Wonders Cities campaign will encourage debate about how cities should respond to the challenges of the present and the future,” Weber said in remarks posted on the New7Wonders website.
The New7Wonders Cities campaign is the “third global vote” organized by the foundation following the declaration of the New7Wonders of the World in 2007 and the New7Wonders of Nature in 2011.
Online users who have voted for the city described Vigan as “one of the Philippines’ most beautiful cities” showcasing its Spanish heritage.
Other nominees in the Asia Pacific include Bangkok, Thailand; Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Phnom Penh, Cambodia; Kyoto, Japan; Seoul, South Korea; Shenzhen, China; Mumbai, India, and Perth, Australia.