The paintings in Lascaux Cave in Southwest France are not the oldest examples of art in the world, but they are considered among the most stunning. The pictures, painted approximately 17,000 years ago, depict large animals, such as bulls and horses, which thrived in this part of Europe during the Paleolithic era. The images were discovered in 1940 by a group of teenagers, and the cave was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1979.
Unfortunately, Lascaux is now closed to the public because the paintings began fading and mold was discovered in the cave. Curious travelers will have to settle for a replica of the largest halls called "Lascaux II," which is located about 200 meters away from the real cavern. There is currently a major effort underway to protect the original paintings from further fading.