Curious countries that changed their capital cities

Internet Travel 2020-08-01 14:02:41

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Rome, London, Tokyo: some capital cities are so iconic that they capture the entire spirit of a country. However, sometimes a country changes its capital city completely, moving the nation's history in an exciting new direction. For a brief lesson on the matter (and even travel inspiration), click on to find out which countries changed their capital.2/31 SLIDES© Shutterstock

Indonesia's president, Joko Widodo, announced in 2019 that the country will change its capital. The current capital is Jakarta, with a population of about 10 million.3/31 SLIDES© Reuters

Jakarta is on Java, an island that is getting a bit too crowded. The new capital has yet to be announced.4/31 SLIDES© Public Domain

The independent republic is spread out across the Pacific Ocean. Kolonia was the original capital, known originally as Santiago de la Ascensión.Slideshow continues on the next slide

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Palikir has a population of around 4,600, and now serves as the capital, even though it's really a town. The country is politically connected with the United States.

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In 1959, the rulers of Pakistan chose to change the capital from Karachi, a cosmopolitan city located in the south.7/31 SLIDES© Shutterstock

Islamabad is the country's current capital. The northern city was built in the '60s, and has a population of just over one million.8/31 SLIDES© Shutterstock

In 2005, the military rulers of Myanmar moved the country's capital from Rangoon (now Yangon).9/31 SLIDES© Getty Images

The capital was moved to an unbuilt site, which was then named Naypyidaw. The city has a population of under a million people.Slideshow continues on the next slide

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Saint Petersburg was founded by Peter the Great in 1703. It served as Russia's capital from 1712 to 1918.11/31 SLIDES© Reuters

Then, the move was made to Moscow. The city has a population of over 13 million, and has hosted major events like the Summer Olympics and the World Cup.12/31 SLIDES© Shutterstock

Almaty is Kazakhstan's commercial center and most populous city. It was also the capital city until 1997.13/31 SLIDES© Reuters

Nur-Sultan is the new capital. It's another planned city that's populated by just over a million people. It was previously known as Astana.14/31 SLIDES© Shutterstock

Nigeria is one of many African nations that have changed their capital. Lagos was the old capital, with the change occurring in 1991.Slideshow continues on the next slide

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Nigeria's current capital is Abuja, located in the center of the country. It was mainly built in the '80s, and the current population is just over a million.16/31 SLIDES© Getty Images

Yet another African nation that changed its capital, Tanzania made the move from Dar es Salaam in 1974.17/31 SLIDES© Wikimedia/Creative Commons

Dodoma became the new capital. The small city has a population of about 410,000 people, yet has several universities.

(Photo: Wikimedia/CC BY-SA 1.0)

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Rio de Janeiro is often mistaken for the Brazilian capital. Actually, the sprawling city used to be Brazil's capital, but a move was made in 1960.19/31 SLIDES© Shutterstock

Brasília, a purpose-built city designed by forward-thinking architects (led by Oscar Niemeyer), was founded in 1960. It is located in the highlands of Brazil's center-west region.20/31 SLIDES© Shutterstock

In 1839, Sucre became the capital of Bolivia. The subtropical city was originally a waypoint into the nation's silver mines, and it's now the constitutional capital.21/31 SLIDES© Shutterstock

In 1898, the capital shifted to La Paz, closer to the country's tin reserves. La Paz is the country's official administrative capital.22/31 SLIDES© Shutterstock

Benin is a complex country with a complicated capital city situation. The first capital was Porto-Novo, which dates back to the 16th century.23/31 SLIDES© Shutterstock

That said, Cotonou is the largest city, and serves as the de facto capital. The government offices are located here.24/31 SLIDES© Shutterstock

Abidjan is the biggest city in the Ivory Coast, as well as its economic center. It was also the capital in 1983.25/31 SLIDES© Reuters

Yamoussoukro was made the capital the same year. This administrative capital is the birthplace of post-independence leader Felix Houphouet-Boigny.26/31 SLIDES© Shutterstock

The powerful African country actually has three capital cities. Pretoria is the country's administrative capital.27/31 SLIDES© Shutterstock

Cape Town is famously the country's legislative capital. The three cities reflect how South Africa was separated in the colonial era. Bloemfontein is the country's judicial capital.

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It's not just countries that have changed their capital. There are many states that have shifted their capital as well. Georgia has changed its state capital five times. Savannah is one of those five.29/31 SLIDES© Shutterstock

Atlanta is the current capital of Georgia. It's the eighth most populated city in the United States, and is a diverse cultural hub in the south.30/31 SLIDES© Shutterstock

Jammu and Kashmir is another curious case. The Indian state has two different capitals, depending on the season. Srinagar is the state's capital during the summer.31/31 SLIDES© Shutterstock

When winter comes around, the city of Jammu becomes the capital. This serves the state's political and geographical climate.

Now that you're here, why not also check out the best solo travel destinations?

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