San Marino’s unique UNESCO recognition
San Marino has a unique UNESCO world heritage status as most of the country is included in the famous cultural heritage list.
One of the main motivations by which UNESCO included San Marino in its list was that the microscopic state has managed to maintain an identity (and state) for many centuries, while on the contrary other type of Lordships, states and empires have collapsed in the meantime.
San Marino is one of the world’s oldest republics and the only surviving Italian city-state, representing an important stage in the development of democratic models in Europe and worldwide. The tangible expressions of this long continuity as the capital of the Republic, its unchanged geo-political context and juridical and institutional functions, is found in the strategic position on the top of Mount Titano, the historic urban layout, urban spaces and many public monuments. San Marino has a widely recognised iconic status as a symbol of a free city-state, illustrated in political debate, literature and arts through the centuries. The defensive walls and the historic centre have undergone changes over time that include intensive restoration and reconstruction between the end of the 19th century and the first decades of the 20th century, a process that can be considered to be part of the history of the property and reflects changing approaches to conservation and presentation of heritage over time.
On the list, by July 7 2008, the Old Town with its defensive walls, Mount Titano for the value of the landscape and the natural habitat, Borgo Maggiore and the Shrine of St. Marino, founder of the state. All of them represent a totality of values that mark the path of a civilization and a testimony that needed to be protected for future generations to be.