Friday, August 31, 2012

CA-265190 & CA-273031

Heading north in the Americas, now i've 2 officials from Canada, the 1st from Toronto and the 2nd from Ottawa.

 © Canadian Culture Thing Inc
CA-265190, sent by Deanna.
This is an interresting card. The buildings on the card are the 1st post offices in Toronto. The oldest is the building on the left top corner, it opened in 1816 and closed in 1827. 
The 4th building is now a museum and Deanna works there.

 Photo by J. Kraulis / Masterfile
CA-273031, sent by Christa.
On this night view of Ottawa we can see the Parliament Buildings and the Château Laurier on the right.
Château laurier is a 5 stars hotel with 429 guest rooms in Downtown Ottawa.
Château Laurier was commissioned by Grand Trunk Railway president Charles Melville Hays, and was constructed between 1909 and 1912.  
The hotel was to be opened on 26 April 1912, but Hays, who was returning to Canada for the hotel opening, perished aboard the RMS Titanic when it sank on 15 April. A subdued opening ceremony was held on 12 June 1912, with Sir Wilfrid Laurier in attendance. - in: wikipedia

Thursday, August 30, 2012

US-1766410 & US-1828159

I've been receiving a lot of lighthouse cards as officials. Recentely i've received new lights from Canada, USA, Netherlands and Finland. These 2 cards are from the USA.  

 From Grafton, Six Old-Time New England Lighthouse cards © 1995 Dover Publications, Inc
 US-1766410, sent by Nicole.
Race Point Light is a historic lighthouse on Cape Cod, Massachusetts. It was first established in 1816, the third light on Cape Cod, a rubblestone tower with one of the first rotating beacons. In 1858 the light got a fourth order Fresnel lens and, in 1874, a second keeper's quarters. In 1875, after significant deterioration of the original tower, it was replaced with an iron tower lined with brick. The original keeper's house was rebuilt as part of the project. The station was electrified in 1957. The larger keeper's house was removed in 1960 and the other was updated.
The station has been restored by the Cape Cod Chapter of the American Lighthouse Foundation and both the keeper's house and the whistle house are available for vacation rental. - in: wikipedia

 
Photos by John & Sam Penrod
US-1828159, sent by "niteshift"
When i got this card i thought i already had it but i checked and i've a very similar one. These are the Great Lakes lighthouses, left to right: Marblehead, Lake Erie; White Shoal, Lake Michigan; Split Rock, Lake Superior; Holland Harbor, Lake Michigan; Charlotte-Genesee, Lake Ontario; Marquette Harbor; Lake Superior; Cheboygan, Lake Huron.

Mexican Unesco cards

I've recentely arranged a trade with Irma from Mexico in order to get new Unesco sites from this country. She was offering Agave Landscape and Ancient Industrial Facilities of Tequila and Hospicio Cabañas.

 Photo by Albert Gomez Barbosa
The 34,658 ha site, between the foothills of the Tequila Volcano and the deep valley of the Rio Grande River, is part of an expansive landscape of blue agave, shaped by the culture of the plant used since the 16th century to produce tequila spirit and for at least 2,000 years to make fermented drinks and cloth. Within the landscape are working distilleries reflecting the growth in the international consumption of tequila in the 19th and 20th centuries. Today, the agave culture is seen as part of national identity. The area encloses a living, working landscape of blue agave fields and the urban settlements of Tequila, Arenal, and Amatitan with large distilleries where the agave ‘pineapple' is fermented and distilled. The property is also a testimony to the Teuchitlan cultures which shaped the Tequila area from AD 200-900, notably through the creation of terraces for agriculture, housing, temples, ceremonial mounds and ball courts. - in: http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/1209

 Photo by Erik Schnabel
The Hospicio Cabañas in Guadalajara, Jalisco, a World Heritage Site since 1997, is one of the oldest and largest hospital complexes in Spanish America.

Photo by Alberto Gomez Barbosa
The Hospicio Cabañas was built at the beginning of the 19th century to provide care and shelter for the disadvantaged – orphans, old people, the handicapped and chronic invalids. This remarkable complex, which incorporates several unusual features designed specifically to meet the needs of its occupants, was unique for its time. It is also notable for the harmonious relationship between the open and built spaces, the simplicity of its design, and its size. In the early 20th century, the chapel was decorated with a superb series of murals, now considered some of the masterpieces of Mexican art. They are the work of José Clemente Orozco, one of the greatest Mexican muralists of the period. - in: http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/815

Monday, August 27, 2012

Xochimilco - Mexico

This card was sent from Mexico by Ana Racic. It was a complete surprise because i didn't know she traveled to Mexico!! Its always nice to know that our friend remembered and had time to send us a card. Many thanks Ana :D
Xochinilco is known for its canals and traditional flat boats, trajineras. This canal and chinampa system, as a vestige of the area’s pre-Hispanic past, has made Xochimilco a World Heritage Site together with the Historic Centre of Mexico City.

 Photo by Adriana Barri Rosas
In the past trajineras were mostly used for the transport of goods, but today, they are almost exclusively used for tourism. These are popular not only with tourists coming into Mexico City, but also with locals, especially on Sundays.
 “Trajineras,” which look similar to gondolas, but are modeled after pre-Hispanic vessels called acallis. The current name is an old Spanish word for “canoe.” Originally, trajineras were decorated with floral arches and branches of ahuejote juniper trees. This was eventually changed to an arch affixed to a roof, added on for protection from the sun. The arches often have female names on them such as “María” or “Juanita,” which may refer to someone special or simply be the name of the boat. They can be still decorated with flowers but more often they are painted with floral and other designs. Under the trajineras used for tourists, there is a long table with chairs to allow for eating and drinking. - in: wikipedia

San Agustín Archaeological Park - Colombia

This was the Unesco card Claus sent me a few days ago, San Agustín Archaeological Park, the 3rd colombian Unesco site in my collection. This site is on the Unesco WHS list since 1996.

Cosmo Guias
The largest group of religious monuments and megalithic sculptures in South America stands in a wild, spectacular landscape. Gods and mythical animals are skilfully represented in styles ranging from abstract to realist. These works of art display the creativity and imagination of a northern Andean culture that flourished from the 1st to the 8th century. - in: http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/744

Ceará's cards - Brazil

Mauro sent me more cards a few days ago. Like the previous ones, these are also from the Ceará state.

Photo by CHACON
 Pinto Martins – Fortaleza International Airport is the airport serving Fortaleza, Brazil. It is named after Euclides Pinto Martins (1892–1924) a Ceará-born aviator, who in 1922 was one of the pioneers of the air-link between New York and Rio de Janeiro. - in: wikipedia
This is my 1st airport card.

 Photo by CHACON
The Dragão do Mar Center of Art And Culture is a government funded cultural center in Fortaleza, Ceará in Brazil. The center contains facilities for exhibitions, a theatre, a library, a cinema and a planetarium. The center was inaugurated in April 1999, and has an overall area of 33 000 m². The name "Dragão do Mar" is in honour of Chico da Matilde, a hero of the abolitionist movement in Ceará, who in 1881 refused to transport slaves to be sold further south in the country. - in: wikipedia

Photo by CHACON
Lagoinha beach is 65 mile (104km) drive from Fotaleza.
This area is one of the largest and most popular attractions because it used to be the ancient hiding place for French pirates. Now, Lagoinha is a quiet colony of fisherman, set amongst paradise landscapes dotted with palm trees, beaches and colorful sand dunes!
 Lush with coconut palms and a small deep lagoon embedded in the red sand dunes, this beach is considered one of the best in the state. - in: http://www.tripwiser.com/trip_thing_to_do-Lagoinha_Beach_from_Fortaleza_Fortaleza_Brazil?itiNodeId=8a8c80fe165ecfa101165fce172c5f9f&eType=activity

Mini-Postcrossing Meeting in Aracaju - Brazil

Aracaju is the capital of Sergipe state in Brazil. My dear friend Déa spent a few days there in June and she was in a local postcrosser, Tito Garcez. She sent me this card showing the St. António Church.

 Photo by Edson. C. Delgado
This church was built in 1669 in one of the highest points of the city. From here is possible to get a nice view over the city's historical centre.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Jacarandas Trees in Buenos Aires

This card from Argentina was in my PC favorites wall. Claus send it to me as an extra card the last time he tagged me.
That's a lovely card!!

Photo by Jose Luis Funes © Magiart
November is the best time of the year to see the jacarandá trees in bloom.
The first specimen of jacarandá, a tree original from the North-west of Argentina, was planted in Buenos Aires in 1875 with the inauguration of the 3 de Febrero Park, and it was then spread all over the city for its ornamental value in the different plantation programs. Some of the most beautiful specimens can be admired in Plaza San Martin, the Botanical Garden, along Avenida Figueroa Alcorta, Plaza Italia, Plaza Alemania. - in: http://timeandplace.com/blog/?paged=2

Unesco cards from Argentina

These 2 cards came from Finland, sent by Sini, but they're from two Unesco sites in Argentina, Peninsula Valdés and Cueva de las Manos, Río Pinturas, both inscribed on the Unesco World Heritage List in 1999.

 Photo by Alberto Patrian © 2006 Argentina
 The Valdes Peninsula is an important nature reserve on the Atlantic coast in the Viedma Department in the north east of Chubut Province.
The coastline is inhabited by marine mammals, like sea lions, elephant seals and fur seals. Southern right whales can be found in Golfo Nuevo and Golfo San José, protected bodies of water located between the peninsula and the Patagonian mainland. These baleen whales come here between May and December, for mating and giving birth, because the water in the gulf is quieter and warmer than in the open sea. Orcas can be found off the coast, in the open sea off the peninsula. In this area, they are known to beach themselves on shore to capture sea lions and elephant seals.
The inner part of the peninsula is inhabited by rheas, guanacos and maras. A high diversity and range of birds live in the peninsula as well; at least 181 bird species, 66 of which migratory, live in the area, including the Antarctic Pigeon. - in: wikipedia

 Serie Argentina © Claudio Suter Fotografia
The Cueva de las Manos, Río Pinturas, contains an exceptional assemblage of cave art, executed between 13,000 and 9,500 years ago. It takes its name (Cave of the Hands) from the stencilled outlines of human hands in the cave, but there are also many depictions of animals, such as guanacos (Lama guanicoe ), still commonly found in the region, as well as hunting scenes. The people responsible for the paintings may have been the ancestors of the historic hunter-gatherer communities of Patagonia found by European settlers in the 19th century. - in: http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/936

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Ethiopian Unesco sites

Besides the touchnotes cards, today i've also got these 2 new Unesco cards from Ethiopia, both sent by Manú "sapic12".
Fasil Ghebbi, Gondar Region was inscribed on the World Heritage Site List in 1979 and the  Lower Valley of the Awash in 1980.

 Photo by Jiri Horak
Fasil Ghebbi is a fortress-enclosure located in Gondar. It served as the home of Ethiopia's emperors in the 17th and 18th centuries. Its unique architecture shows diverse influences including Nubian, Arab, and Baroque styles. - in: wikipedia
One of the buildings in the Fasil Ghebbi fortress is the Fasilides Castle, named after Fasilides, the Ethiopian emperor who founded Gondar.

Photo by Pavel Mikes
The Awash is a major river of Ethiopia.
Humans have lived in the valley of the Awash almost since the beginning of the species. The Middle Awash has been where numerous pre-human hominid remains have been found.

Loropéni Ruins - Burkina Faso

I'm sure today my mailman realized how crazy i am about cards :D I've got 20 touchnotes cards and an envelope...
One of the touchnote cards was sent by Miguel "leugim". Burkina Faso is kinda of a private joke in the portuguese community. I don't remember how it start but it was probably something Paula "geminiscp" said.

The 11,130m2 property, the first to be inscribed in the country, with its imposing stone walls is the best preserved of ten fortresses in the Lobi area and is part of a larger group of 100 stone enclosures that bear testimony to the power of the trans-Saharan gold trade. Situated near the borders of Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana and Togo, the ruins have recently been shown to be at least 1,000 years old. The settlement was occupied by the Lohron or Koulango peoples, who controlled the extraction and transformation of gold in the region when it reached its apogee from the 14th to the 17th century. Much mystery surrounds this site large parts of which have yet to be excavated. The settlement seems to have been abandoned during some periods during its long history. The property which was finally deserted in the early 19th century is expected to yield much more information. - in: http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/1225

IT-190709

It's easy to see that this ID doesn't match the image on the card. This is an official frm Italy showing the Angkor Wat in Cambodia.

 IT-190709, sent by Elena.
Angkor Wat is the largest Hindu temple complex in the world. The temple was built by King Suryavarman II in the early 12th century in Yasodharapura, the capital of the Khmer Empire, as his state temple and eventual mausoleum. Breaking from the Shaivism tradition of previous kings, Angkor Wat was instead dedicated to Vishnu. As the best-preserved temple at the site, it is the only one to have remained a significant religious centre since its foundation – first Hindu, dedicated to the god Vishnu, then Buddhist. The temple is at the top of the high classical style of Khmer architecture. It has become a symbol of Cambodia, appearing on its national flag, and it is the country's prime attraction for visitors. - in: wikipedia

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

SG-74358

Still in Asia, now i've an official from Singapore, showing the Sri Mariamman Temple.

 Photo by Albert Lam
SG-74358, sent by Loh.
The Sri Mariamman Temple is Singapore's oldest Hindu temple and dates back to 1827. Located in Chinatown, Mariamman Kovil or Kling Street Temple as it was popularly known then was constructed by immigrants from the Nagapatnam and Cuddalore districts of South India.
The temple is dedicated to Goddess Mariamman, known for her power to cure epidemic illnesses and diseases. When you get here, observe the majestic gopuram (gate tower), which is covered with figurative sculptures of gods and goddesses and mythological beasts, an easily recognisable landmark to generations of Hindu worshippers and Singaporeans alike.
During the colonial period, the temple served as an important focal point for community activities and acted as the Registry of Marriages for Hindus at the time when only the temple's priest was authorised to solemnise Hindu marriages. The Theemithi (fire walking ceremony), one of the main festivals celebrated at the temple, is held annually around October and November each year. - in: http://www.yoursingapore.com/content/traveller/en/browse/see-and-do/culture-and-heritage/places-of-worship/sri-mariamman-temple.html

Monday, August 20, 2012

Hong Island - Thailand

Back to Emerich's cards, now i've this one from the Hong Island in Thailand.

This island is located at the edge of the Than Bokkhorani National Park. Is home to a beautiful sandy beach, and some wonderful deep and shallow water coral deposits.
Hong Island stands out as one of the most beautiful island of the Andaman coast. In the middle of beautiful island there lies a hidden lagoon spot for local fishermen and is also one place where bird nests are collected. The coral reefs here are amazing and siphons can also be found. Naturally, there is an abundance of brightly. Colored tropical fish also to be found here. - in: http://www.travbuddy.com/travel-blogs/11059/

St. John's Cathedral - Hong Kong

I'm addicted to Touchnote. I've heard about it from Iris "scrutiny" on the GTKY thread. I've already sent a few cards to some of my postcrossing friends and also to myself, using my own pictures. Iris did the same and sent me this card of a door at St. John's Cathedral in Hong Kong.

Photo by Iris E.
St. John's Cathedral is located at 4 Garden Road, Central, is an Anglican cathedral in Hong Kong. This Anglican cathedral is one of the five cathedrals in the city.
St. John's Cathedral is the oldest surviving Western ecclesiastical building in Hong Kong, and the oldest Anglican church in the Far East. - in: wikipedia

CN-651167

I didn't immediately realize what was on this card but this is a detail of a balcony on the Gulangyu island, island off the coast of Xiamen.  


CN-651167, sent by Wuai.
As a place of residence for Westerners during Xiamen's colonial past, Gulangyu is famous for its architecture. This the balcony of an old house in #64 Zhangzhou Rd.

Temple of Heaven - China

Relie, from Singapore, visited China a few weeks ago and she sent me this card from the. She said she had to get up at 5.30 am to visit the Temple of Heaven! Who said you're supposed to rest when on holidays??! Beeing a tourist in not easy.

 The Temple of Heaven is a worthwhile visiting place in Beijing. It is much bigger than the Forbidden City and smaller than the Summer Palace with an area of about 2,700,000 square meters. The Temple was built in 1420 A.D. during the Ming Dynasty to offer sacrifice to Heaven. As Chinese emperors called themselves 'The Son of Heaven' ,they dared not to build their own dwelling,'Forbidden City' bigger than a dwelling for Heaven. - in: http://www.travelchinaguide.com/attraction/beijing/heaven/

Chitwan National Park - Nepal

Chitwan National Park is an Unesco World Heritage site in Nepal, on the whs list since 1984. This is a new site in my collection and the card was sent by Vesna.

Photo by Dorothy Mierow
Chitwan National Park is the first national park in Nepal. Formerly called Royal Chitwan National Park it was established in 1973 and granted the status of a World Heritage Site in 1984. It covers an area of 932 km2 (360 sq mi) and is located in the subtropical Inner Terai lowlands of south-central Nepal in the Chitwan District.
The wide range of vegetation types in the Chitwan National Park is haunt of more than 700 species of wildlife and a not yet fully surveyed number of butterfly, moth and insect species. - in: wikipedia

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Indian Unesco sites

All these cards are from indian Unesco sites new to my collection. The Champener card was sent by Sita and the other two, Chatrapathi Shivaji Terminus and Sanchi, were sent by Nagi.


 Champaner-Pavagadh Archaeological Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site which is located in Panchmahal district in Gujarat, India. It was inscribed in 2004.Champaner city was built by Sultan Mehmood Shah Begara of Gujrat There is a concentration of largely unexcavated archaeological, historic and living cultural heritage properties cradled in an impressive landscape which includes prehistoric (chalcolithic) sites, a hill fortress of an early Hindu capital, and remains of the 16th century capital of the state of Gujarat. The site also includes, among other vestiges, fortifications, palaces, religious buildings, residential precincts, agricultural structures and water installations, from the 8th to the 14th centuries. The Kalikamata Temple on top of the Pavagadh Hill is considered to be an important shrine, attracting large numbers of pilgrims throughout the year. The site is the only complete and unchanged Islamic pre-Mughal city.
Champaner-Pavagadh is perhaps the most authentic medieval city in India as all the information about the original city is available below the ground. - in: wikipedia

 Photo by V. B. Anand
 The Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, formerly known as Victoria Terminus Station, in Mumbai, is an outstanding example of Victorian Gothic Revival architecture in India, blended with themes deriving from Indian traditional architecture. The building, designed by the British architect F. W. Stevens, became the symbol of Bombay as the ‘Gothic City’ and the major international mercantile port of India. The terminal was built over 10 years, starting in 1878, according to a High Victorian Gothic design based on late medieval Italian models. Its remarkable stone dome, turrets, pointed arches and eccentric ground plan are close to traditional Indian palace architecture. It is an outstanding example of the meeting of two cultures, as British architects worked with Indian craftsmen to include Indian architectural tradition and idioms thus forging a new style unique to Bombay. - in: http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/945

 Archaeological Survey of India
Sanchi known for its "Stupas" is a small village in Raisen District of the state of Madhya Pradesh. It is the location of several Buddhist monuments dating from the 3rd century BCE to the 12th CE and is one of the important places of Buddhist pilgrimage. 
It is the oldest Buddhist sanctuary in existence and was a major Buddhist centre in India until the 12th century A.D.Buddhist Monuments at Sanchi are on the World Heritage List since 1989.

Jaipur - India

This is still a card i've received the 1st time i've traded with Nagi and that was in June.
I believe this is my 1st card from Jaipur.

Jaipur is the largest city in Rajasthan and was built in the eighteenth century by Sawai Jai Singh as India's first planned city. Jaipur is a major tourist attraction amongst Indian as well as international travellers. It belongs to the tourist Golden Triangle of Delhi, Jaipur and Agra.
Jaipur is often called the Pink City in reference to its distinctly coloured buildings, which were originally painted this color to imitate the red sandstone architecture of Mughal cities. The present earthy red color originates from repainting of the buildings undertaken for a visit by the Prince of Wales in 1876.

 Photo by V. B. Anand
On the card there's the Hawa Mahal (Palace of Breeze), built in 1799 by Maharaja Sawai Singh as part of City Palace. It was an extension of the Zenana (women) chamber. It's purpose was to allow royal ladies to observe everyday life in the street below without being seen. It is a five storey high red sandstone structure complete with over 950 windows. The breeze (or hawa in Hindi) circulates through these windows giving the palace its name. - in: wikitravel

UA-314554 & UA-324628

Two offials from Ukraine, both churches cards but not the same tough. The 1st is the Armenian Church in Chernivtsi and the 2nd, an interior view of St. Andrew's Church in Kiev.

 UA-314554, sent by Oksana.
The Armenian Catholic Church was constructed in 1875 and named after the saints Peter and Paul. It was built by the Czech architect Josef Hlavka.
Nowadays the building of the Armenian Church serves as an organ hall, as Chernivtsi doesn't have an Armenian congregation anymore. - in: http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Europe/Ukraine/Chernivetska_Oblast/Chernivtsi-713897/Things_To_Do-Chernivtsi-TG-C-1.html

UA-324628, sent by Serhiy.
I already had an outside view of this church.
St. Andrew’s Church is a famous architectural landmark of 18th century, which was built by the order of Russian Empress Elizabeth in 1754. The church was created in the Baroque style by famous architect Bartolomeo Rastrelli. Moscow architect Ivan Michurin was the executor. The church is a true work of art. - in: http://www.kievcity.com.ua/culture-and-art/kiev-museums/st-andrews-church-2
This is the baroque three-tier iconostasis designed by Rastrelli.