Here are some of the most well-known bell towers, also known as campaniles or belfries.
La Giralda, Seville Cathedral in Spain
La Giralda was initially built as a minaret during the Moorish period in Spain, then it was converted into a bell tower belonging to the Seville Cathedral. It dates from the late 12th century and takes its name from the weather vane known as Giraldillo on top of the tower. The construction of the Renaissance bell chamber with 24 bells took place in 1568. La Giralda is a great example of a cultural blend that defines Spanish architecture. Besides, the tower is a part of the largest Gothic cathedral in the world.
Leaning Tower of Pisa, Italy
Old Joe in University of Birmingham, United Kingdom
Measuring 100 meters in height, Joseph Chamberlain Memorial Clock Tower, also known as Old Joe, is the tallest freestanding bell tower and the tallest freestanding clock tower in the world.
Giotto’s Campanile, Florence Cathedral in Florence, Italy
Bell Tower of Xi’an in China
The Bell Tower of Xi’an dates from 1384, during the early Ming Dynasty. Its original function was to repost news in ancient times. Later, the tower played key roles in the events of the early 20th century such as the Revolution of 1911 and the War of Protecting the Nation. Furthermore, it worked as an alarm station for warning the Japanese air raids during the Anti-Japanese War. The tower was also the first cinema in the city, opened in 1927.
Kalyazin Bell Tower in Russia
Kalyazin Bell Tower, also known as the Flooded Belfry, is a neo-classical structure over the waters of the Uglich Reservoir on the Volga River opposite the town of Kalyazin, Russia. Built between 1796 and 1800, the tower was a part of the 17th-century Monastery of St. Nicholas. However, this historical monastery disappeared under the waters due to a flood resulting from the construction of a dam in the 1930s.
Belfry of Bruges in Belgium
Saint Mark’s Campanile, Saint Mark’s Basilica in Venice, Italy
Ivan the Great Bell Tower in Moscow, Russia
Béthune Belfry in France
The Belfry of Schepenhuis in Aalst, Belgium
Campanile di Curon in Italy
The 14th-century Campanile di Curon is a remnant of an old town flooded by the waters of Lago di Resia shortly after World War II. The flood resulted from the merging of three pre-existing lakes into one artificial lake large enough to support a hydroelectric plant.