Alberta now has its sixth UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Writing-On-Stone Provincial Park near Milk River now has the honour of having the prestigious designation.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) announced the addition of Writing-On-Stone at the 43rd session of its World Heritage Committee in Baku, Azerbaijan.
Alberta Parks Minister Jason Nixon says it’s easy to see why the site is seen by many as an expression of the confluence of the spirit and human worlds. “I hope all Albertans will take the time to explore this extraordinary part of the province and all it has to offer.”
More than 60,000 people travel to visit the southern Alberta park each year. It contains the most significant concentration of protected First Nations petroglyphs (rock carvings) and pictographs (rock paintings) on the Great Plains of North America. Some of the carvings and paintings date back 2,000 years.
Martin Heavy Head with the Mookaakin Cultural and Heritage Society says the designation of Writing-on-Stone provides the Blackfoot Confederacy a basis for its future generations as to the strength and truth of our continuing relationship to this land and to our traditions, ceremonies and cultural practices.
Along with Writing-On-Stone, the other five UNESCO sites in Alberta include Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump, Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park, Dinosaur Provincial Park, the Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks, and Wood Buffalo National Park.