• The Colosseum in Rome, Italy during Earth Hour 2008. (Photo: Creative Commons)

Last Saturday, millions of people participated in Earth Hour by switching off their lights and reducing their electricity use. But it wasn't just homes and apartment buildings that cut their energy. Many of the world's monuments and landmarks turned off their lights, helping to set new records. Here's how five countries celebrated Earth Hour.

On Ottawa's Parliament Hill, there was a candlelight vigil at Centennial Flame. According to Toronto Hydro, the largest city in Canada reduced its power usage by six per cent.

The lights were switched off at Edinburgh's famous buildings, including Edinburgh Castle, the Palace at Holyroodhouse and the Scottish Parliament. In the highlands, the Highland Council’s Ranger Service led a nocturnal wildlife walk, a stargazing event and a ghost walk in the dark.

In Marina Bay in the southern part of Singapore, there was a launch of the movie The Amazing Spider-Man 2, as well as live music, food and a sustainable dance floor that lit up using the dancers' kinetic energy.

Beijing's National Stadium, also known as Bird's Nest, in China during Earth Hour 2010. (Photo: Creative Commons)

South Africa
This year's winner of the Global Earth Hour Capital was Cape Town, with its many green initiatives beating out last year's winner Vancouver. At Hotel Verde, there was a night market, with green crafters, artisans, musicians and local food producers celebrating the planet.

Famous monuments in Paris, like the Notre Dame Cathedral and Arc de Triomphe, were switched off, and more than 200 towns across France participated in Earth Hour.

To see how other countries celebrated Earth Hour, view the original story on the Classroom Energy Diet Challenge blog.