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Big Ben bonged for the last time on Aug. 21. London’s famous bell will be silenced until 2021 while its home, Elizabeth Tower, undergoes a $77 million renovation.


And it’s far from the first tourist attraction to close for major repairs in recent years.

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Eiffel Tower

One of the most famous structures in the City of Light is undergoing a 15-year, $321 million overhaul. Workers will update the tower’s elevators and twinkling lights, and reinforce it against weather and possible terror attacks.

The Eiffel Tower is repainted every seven years. Per the Guardian, the process takes 20 months and “requires 60 tonnes [sic] of paint.”

Sydney Opera House

This iconic Australian performance venue’s Joan Sunderland Theatre is undergoing its largest upgrade since it opened in 1973. As a result, the theater will be closed for more than half of 2017.

The renovations will cost an estimated $200 million.

Forbidden City

Thanks to many generous donations, Forbidden City’s Yang Xin Dian, or Hall of Mental Cultivation, is having its first renovation in more than a century.

Work on the famed Chinese palace should be completed by 2020.

Washington Monument

Businessman and philanthropist David Rubenstein is spending $2-3 million on renovations to the elevator inside this prominent piece of the Washington, D.C., skyline.

The monument is closed to visitors until at least 2019.

Machu Picchu

Peru’s “New Wonder of the World” is in the midst of a $36.7 million upgrade.

Changes include hiring a staff of guides and guards, adding an exit ramp and additional security measures, installing on-site toilets, and more. Work will continue until about 2019.

Beth Sawicki About the author:
Beth Sawicki is a content editor at Rare. Email her at Beth@Rare.us.
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