Thursday, June 27, 2013

FI-1775209, FI-1762622 & FI-1787674

After finnish Unesco sites, i've finnish official cards.

 Photos by: Seppo I. Myllyviita
FI-1775209, sent by Tiina.
Lauhanvuori National Park is a national park in the Southern Ostrobothnia region of Finland, on the border of Kauhajoki and Isojoki. It was established in 1982 and covers 53 square kilometres (20 sq mi).
The park is characterized by its pine forestland, spring brooks, and swamps. - in: wikipedia

 Photo by: Markku Roisko
FI-1762622, sent by Marja-Leena.
This is Hämeenlinna's Lutheran Church. It was built in 1798 as a rotunda modelled on the Pantheon in Rome.

FI-1787674, sent by Eeva.
Interresting facts about Helsinki:
  • In Helsinki, the population of women is greater than that of men, with men constituting around 46.6 per cent of the population and women making up around 53.4 percent.
  • Helsinki is one of the coldest cities in the world, as it does not receive sunshine for about consecutive 51 days in winters.
  • Helsinki has the highest cellphone-to-resident ratios in the world. The world’s leading manufacturer of cell phones, Nokia, is based in Finland.
  • Between June and mid-September, there are special teams of uniformed men deployed all over the city known as the ‘Helsinki Helpers’. These forces are identified by their green uniforms and are meant to dispense advice or information about the city, the city’s maps and everyday life in Helsinki.
  • The city of Helsinki was founded at the mouth of the river Vantaa, by the decree of the King Gustav Vasa of Sweden, in the year 1550. However, the city was eventually moved from there to the present location, in the year 1643.
  • Helsinki has been the capital of Finland since 1812. - in: http://lifestyle.iloveindia.com/lounge/facts-about-helsinki-1917.html
  • Finnish Unesco WHS

    I already have all the finnish Unesco sites but that's always great to receive different views of those places. Both of these cards were sent by Katy.

     The Bronze Age cairn cemetery of Sammallahdenmäki in Lappi was the first Finnish archaeological site to be included in the UNESCO World Heritage List in December 1999. Sammallahdenmäki was chosen to the list as the finest Western Bronze Age site in Finland and Scandinavia.
    The Sammallahdenmäki site is located in Lower Satakunta in the village of Kivikylä, Lappi parish. The site consists of a cluster of 33 stone cairns spread out over an area nearly one kilometre in length.
    Sammallahdenmäki is an exceptionally valuable example of Finland’s Bronze Age culture because it presents the ancient monuments in a well-preserved natural milieu. The area contains nearly all known types of Bronze Age cairns known from Finland and the surroundings still have an air of the original archipelago landscape with its lichen-covered cliffs and gnarled, weather-beaten pines. -in: http://www.nba.fi/en/cultural_environment/archaeological_heritage/maintenance/maintained_sites/sammallahdenmaki
    A nice view from the Oravivuori triangulation tower, one of the six Struve Geodetic Arc points in Finland.

    Wednesday, June 26, 2013

    Flekkefjord - Norway

    Last month Joaninha traveled to Norway (envy) and she sent me this card from there.
    Flekkefjord is a town in the county of Vest-Agder, southern Norway.

    © Aune Forlag AS - Foto: Arne Lunde
    Flekkefjord church it is an octagonal wooden church drawn by the architect H. F. D. Linstow and built in 1833.  

    Tuesday, June 25, 2013

    Norwegian's Unesco WHS

    A few months ago Jo was offering some of Norway's Unesco sites and he accepted to trade with me. Now i'm only missing 1 site from this country, the Vega Archipelago.
    The Rock carvings at Alta were inscribed on the Unesco WHS in 1985 and the Struve Geodetic Arc in 2005.

    © TO-FOTO AS. - Photo by Tommy Simonsen
     The Rock art of Alta are located in and around the municipality of Alta in the county of Finnmark in northern Norway. Since the first carvings were discovered in 1972, more than 6000 carvings have been found on several sites around Alta. The largest locality, at Jiepmaluokta about 4 kilometres outside of Alta, contains many thousand individual carvings and has been turned into an open-air museum. The site, along with the sites Storsteinen, Kåfjord, Amtmannsnes and Transfarelv, was placed on the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites on 3 December 1985. It is Norway's only prehistoric World Heritage Site. - in: wikipedia

    © Aune Forlag AS - Photo by Lars Mathisen
    This is the northernmost station of the Struve Geodetic Arc, located in Fuglenes, Hammerfest.

    4th Annual London Meeting @ Oxford

    Last May in Oxford took place the 4th Annual London PC Meeting, which gathered a few postcrossers from different countries. Heidi and Laerke sent me these 2 great Oxford cards, my 1st from this university city.

     © 2012 Chris Andrews Publications Ltd.
    Oxford is a city in central southern England, known worldwide as a university town and home of the University of Oxford, the oldest university in the country and the English-speaking world. Although its exact date of foundation is unclear, there is evidence of teaching as far back as 1096.
    This card shows Christ Church Cathedral, a romasnesque-gothic temple built between 1160-1200. It is also the chapel of Christ Church, a college of the University of Oxford.


    © 2012 Chris Andrews Publications Lta
    This one shows Radcliffe Camera and St. Mary's Church.
    The Radcliffe Camera, built 1737–1749 as Oxford's science library, now holds books from the English, History, and Theology collections.
    The University Church of St Mary the Virgin is the largest of Oxford's parish churches and the centre from which the University of Oxford grew. It is situated on the north side of the High Street, and is surrounded by university and college buildings. - in: wikipedia

    Saturday, June 22, 2013

    Scotish Castles

    If i had to chose a few favorites among my more than 6000 cards, these would be in my top 20. They're soooo beautiful. That's because of places like these that i want to visit Scotland.
    These cards were sent by Gracinha.

     © David Lyons
    As one of the most iconic images of Scotland, Eilean Donan is recognised all around the world. Situated on an island at the point where three great sea lochs meet, and surrounded by some majestic scenery, it is little wonder that the castle is now one of the most visited and important attractions in the Scottish highlands.
    Although first inhabited around the 6th century, the first fortified castle was built in the mid 13th century and stood guard over the lands of Kintail. Since then, at least four different versions of the castle have been built and re-built as the feudal history of Scotland unfolded through the centuries.
    Partially destroyed in a Jacobite uprising in 1719, Eilean Donan lay in ruins for the best part of 200 years until Lieutenant Colonel John MacRae-Gilstrap bought the island in 1911 and proceeded to restore the castle to its former glory. After 20 years of toil and labour the castle was re-opened in 1932. - in: http://www.eileandonancastle.com/

     © Andy Williams
    Ben Nevis is the highest mountain in the British Isles. The castle shown on the card is the Inverlochy Castle Hotel, a baronial mansion was built in 1863 by James Scarlett, 1st Baron Abinger. It is located about two miles away from the 13th century Inverlochy Castle, after which it was named.
     Queen Victoria spent a week at Inverlochy during an 1873 visit to Balmoral, remarking "I never saw a lovelier or more romantic spot". The house has been used as a hotel since 1969. It was voted "best hotel in Europe" by Travel + Leisure magazine in 2006. - in: wikipedia

    Thursday, June 20, 2013

    NL-1699958

    A great danish card sent as an official from Netherlands and sent by someone i've already met in a Postcrossing meeting.
    For more than 450 years, Egeskov Castle has stood in its beautiful location in the landscape of Funen (Fyn) Island. Egeskov is famous for being the best preserved moat castle in Europe.

    Photo by Carrebye Billedarkiv
    NL-1699958, sent by Saskia.
    Egeskov Castle, the house as we see it today, was built by Frands Brockenhuus and was completed in 1554.
    The building, which looks so peaceful and idyllic to today's visitors was built for defence purposes. It consists of two long houses connected by a thick double wall - the first house could be abandoned and the fight continued from the second house. The double wall is so thick, it contains hidden stairs and a well to secure a water supply during a siege. The outer walls have machicolations for dropping solids or liquids on the enemy and embrasures, and the enemy's flank could be shot at from the towers. In addition, the only access to the house was across the drawbridge.
    In the more than 400 years that have passed since it was built, various families have lived in the castle.
    During this period, the castle was developed into an up-to-date model farm with its own dairy, power station and railway track to Kværndrup, and this formed the economic basis for the large, modern farm that Egeskov is to this day. - in:
    http://www.egeskov.dk/en/history

    Wednesday, June 19, 2013

    NL-1826035, NL-1886618 & NL-1897834

    One lighthouse and churches from the Netherlands.

     © 2011 TSS NIJKERK art. 018
    NL-1826035, sent by Jolanda.
    Jolanda said this is a card from Den Haag, to be more exact, Scheveningen. 
    Scheveningen  lighthouse was activated in 1875.
    The lighthouse is made of cast iron and consists of nine segments. At the foot of the tower is one house for the supervisor and four more for the lighthouse keeper. The original light rotated in a mercury bath, which was replaced in the 1960s by an electrical system. - in: wikipedia

     © Diepenmaat Uitgeverij & Ontwerp
    NL-1886618, sent by Anita.
    Schiedam is a city and municipality in the province of South Holland in the Netherlands. It is part of the Rotterdam metropolitan area.
    The city is known for its historical center with canals, and for having the tallest windmills in the world. Schiedam is also famous for the distilleries and malthouses and production of jenever (gin). - in: wikipedia
    The church on the card is St. John Church, built around 1335 on a spot where earlier in 1262 a small church had stood. The church contains the grave of Lidwina, a Dutch mystic who is honored as a saint by the Catholic Church.

    © QUINTA BUMA POTOGRAFIE
    NL-1897834, sent by Laura.
    The church of Beek was first mentioned as a chapel of the monastery of Zyfflich in 1286, but is in fact older, the lower half of the tower dating from the 11th century. The original chapel burned down in ca. 1380, its successor was partly destoyed by fire as well in ca. 1450. When Beek became a parish in 1536 the building was enlarged twice. Although the vast majority of the Beek population were catholics, early in the 17th century, after the Reformation, the church became protestant. 
    When religious freedom was proclaimed at the end of the 18th century the church was not returned to the catholic majority. Instead it was used by both protestants and catholics, until the latter built a new church of their own in the 1820's.
    During a restoration in 1906-1909 by F.A. Ludewig the current apse and the consistory were added. In september 1944 the church was badly damaged. Five years later it was restored. After yet another restoration in 2002, repairing several major technical mistakes made during the Ludewig restoration, the church was handed to a foundation in 2004. - in:
     http://www.archimon.nl/gelderland/beekherv.html

    Tuesday, June 18, 2013

    Valletta - Malta

    This is an amazing view. I had it in my favorites and when i saw Ingrid had it to trade, i picked it immediately.

    © Photo: Maurizio Urso
    On the back of the card: One of Unesco's World Heritage Sites, Valletta was founded on 28 March 1566. Its magnificent network of fortifications extend over 27 km and are a perfect exemple of Renaissance militar architecture.
    The didnified palaces and churches built by the knights of St. John form an impressive architectonic complex that let it to being described as "a city built by gentlemen for gentlemen".  

    Monday, June 17, 2013

    Palermo's Cathedral - Italy

    Another beautiful cathedral, this one from Sicily and also sent by Ingrid.

    The Duomo (Cathedral) of Palermo, Sicily, is an impressive 12th-century cathedral encompassing a wide variety of architectural styles.
    In 1184, during Sicily's Norman period, Archbishop of Palermo Gualtiero Offamiglio founded the cathedral on the site of a Muslim mosque, which had itself been built over an early Christian basilica.
    The archbishop's main aim was to surpass the glory of the magnificent cathedral of nearby Monreale, and the Palermo Duomo became an architectural battleground for "The Battle of the Two Cathedrals."

    © SIMEPHOTO - ph. Giovanni Simeone - all rights reserved
    Many additions were made to the original Norman structure over the years. The exterior was "Gothicized" in the 13th and 14th centuries, and the Spaniards made their mark in the 15th century.
    But if anyone could be called the culprit for the cathedral's playground of styles, it is the Neapolitan architect Ferdinando Fuga, who went with the mood of his day and in 1771 and 1809 gave both the exterior and the interior of the Duomo a sweeping Neoclassical style. - in: http://www.sacred-destinations.com/italy/palermo-duomo

    Friday, June 14, 2013

    Linz's Cathedral - Austria

    One last card from Austria, this one from Linz, Ingrid's hometown, with the beautiful city's New Cathedral.

    The building of the New Cathedral, also known as the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Linz was begun in 1855 by Bishop Franz-Josef Rudigier. The first stone was laid in 1862.
    In 1924 Bishop Johannes Maria Gföllner consecrated the finished building as the Cathedral of the Virgin Mary. The plans, drawn by the Master Builder of the Archdiocese of Cologne, Vincenz Statz, were made in the French high gothic style.

    © Verlag Kellner
    With 20,000 seats, the cathedral is the largest, but not the highest, church in Austria. The originally-planned, higher spire was not approved, because in Austria-Hungary at the time, no building was allowed to be taller than the South Tower of the St. Stephen's Cathedral in Vienna. At 135 m, the New Cathedral is two meters shorter than the Viennese cathedral.
    Particularly noteworthy are the cathedral's stained-glass windows. The most famous is the Linz Window, which depicts the history of Linz. The windows also contain portraits of the various sponsors of the church's construction. During the Second World War some windows, particularly in the southern part of the cathedral, have been damaged. Instead of restoring the original windows, they have been replaced with windows displaying modern art. - in: wikipedia

    Salzkammergut Cultural Landscape - Austria

    All these 3 wonderful cards were sent by Ingrid and all the 3 are from the Salzkammergut region.
    The Salzkammergut is a resort area located in Austria. It stretches from the City of Salzburg eastwards along the Austrian Alpine Foreland and the Northern Limestone Alps to the peaks of the Dachstein Mountains, spanning the federal states of Upper Austria, Salzburg, and Styria. The main river of the region is the Traun, a right tributary of the Danube. The name Salzkammergut literally means "Estate of the Salt Chamber" and derives from the Imperial Salt Chamber, the authority charged with running the precious salt mines of the Habsburg Monarchy. - in: wikipedia
    Salzkammergut Cultural Landscape was inscribed on the Unesco WHS list in 1997. 
     
     Cosy - Verlag
    Schloss Ort (or Schloss Orth) is an Austrian castle situated in the Traunsee lake.The castle was founded around 1080 by Hartnidus of Ort. The castle changed hands frequently. More often than not, it was bought or sold, but occasionally gained new owners through death or marriage.
    At present the castle is being used for study center of the Federal Ministry for Land and Forestry (Bundesministeriums für Land- und Forstwirtschaft). On January 5, 1995, the castle was officially acquired by the city of Gmunden. In 1996, it began to be used as a location for the TV series Schlosshotel Orth.

     Cosy - Verlag
    Traunkirchen is located on the shores of Traunsee Lake in the heart of the scenic Salzkammergut Region.

    Cosy - Verlag
    Hallstatt is a village located near the Hallstätter See.
    Hallstatt is known for its production of salt, dating back to prehistoric times, and gave its name to the Hallstatt culture.
    The village is a popular tourist attraction owing to its small-town appeal and can be toured on foot in ten minutes.

    Thursday, June 13, 2013

    AT-140257 & AT-141545

    Tow austrian official cards, one from Vienna and the other from Bad Ischl.

     Verlag C. Bauer GmbH
    AT-140257, sent by Claudia.
    St. Charles' Church is a magnificent religious baroque building in Vienna, the last work of the architect Johann Bernhard Fischer von Erlach.
    The church, finished in 1739 by his son Joseph Emanuel Fischer von Erlach, was built as the result of a vow taken by Emperor Charles VI during a plague epidemic. The church is consecrated to the patron saint of the Habsburg emperor, Saint Charles Borromeo: The exhibits in the small Museo Borromeo include the traveling clothes of the Bishop of Milan.
    The renovation of the High Altar, designed by Fischer von Erlach, has been completed and it has regained its original splendor. The opulent frescoes in the cupola by Johannes Michael Rottmayr contain 1250 square meters of incredible splendor and beautiful colors; they show the glory of Saint Charles Borromeo. - in: http://www.wien.info/en/sightseeing/sights/from-g-to-k/st-charles-church

    © St. Wolfganger Kunstverlag 
    AT-141545, sent by Greta.
    Bad Ischl is a spa town in Austria. It lies in the southern part of Upper Austria, at the Traun River in the centre of the Salzkammergut region.
    The Kaiservilla in Bad Ischl, Upper Austria, was the summer residence of Kaiser Franz Joseph I and Empress Elisabeth of Austria (Sisi).
    Originally the palace was a Biedermeier villa belonging to a Viennese notary named Josef August Eltz. In 1850 it was purchased by Dr Eduard Mastalier. After Franz Joseph's engagement to Princess Elisabeth of Bavaria in 1853, Franz Joseph's mother, Princess Sophie of Bavaria, purchased the villa as a wedding present for the couple.
    In subsequent years, the villa was altered and expanded in a Neoclassical style by Antonio Legrenzi. The extant central portion was expanded towards the park and the originally posterior portion of the house was converted to form the entrance with Classical columns and tympana. Two additional wings were constructed, giving the building the overall shape of an "E".
    The villa is surrounded by a large park in the "English Style". The architectural ensemble in its contemporary form was completed in 1860. Construction was significantly slowed by the fact that it could not proceed during the summer months due to the presence of the royal family.
    Today, the mansion is home to the Archduke Markus Habsburg, but also offers grounds tours to the public. - in: wikipedia

    Squirrel from Austria

    Squirrels are familiar to almost everyone. More than 200 squirrel species live all over the world, with the notable exception of Australia.
    Like other rodents, squirrels have four front teeth that never stop growing so they don't wear down from the constant gnawing. Tree squirrels are the types most commonly recognized, often seen gracefully scampering and leaping from branch to branch. Other species are ground squirrels that live in burrow or tunnel systems, where some hibernate during the winter season.
    Ground squirrels eat nuts, leaves, roots, seeds, and other plants. They also catch and eat small animals, such as insects and caterpillars. These small mammals must always be wary of predators because they are tasty morsels with few natural defenses, save flight. Sometimes groups of ground squirrels work together to warn each other of approaching danger with a whistling call.

    © Herst. u. Verlag Schöning & Co. + Gebr Schmidt
    Tree squirrels are commonly seen everywhere from woodlands to city parks. Though they are terrific climbers, these squirrels do come to the ground in search of fare such as nuts, acorns, berries, and flowers. They also eat bark, eggs, or baby birds. Tree sap is a delicacy to some species.
    Flying squirrels are a third, adaptable type of squirrel. They live something like birds do, in nests or tree holes, and although they do not fly, they can really move across the sky. Flying squirrels glide, extending their arms and legs and coasting through the air from one tree to another. Flaps of skin connecting limbs to body provide a winglike surface. These gliding leaps can exceed 150 feet (46 meters). Flying squirrels eat nuts and fruit, but also catch insects and even baby birds.
    Whether they dwell high in a tree or in an underground burrow, female squirrels typically give birth to two to eight offspring. Babies are blind and totally dependent on their mothers for two or three months. Mothers may have several litters in a year, so most squirrel populations are robust. - in: http://animals.nationalgeographic.com/animals/mammals/squirrel/

    Montreux & Sion - Switzerland

    Two great swiss cards sent by Óscar. The 1st shows the Châtelard Castle in Montreux and the 2nd the Valère Basilica in Sion.


    Château du Châtelard is located on a hill in the middle of a vineyard near Montreux. It commands a splendid view of the lake and the Alps.
    It is a Swiss heritage site of national significance.

    Edition PERROCHET S. A.
    The Valère basilica, also called Valère castle, is a fortified church situated in Sion in the canton of Valais in Switzerland.
    The church (Notre-Dame de Valère) was built during the 12th and 13th centuries and obtained the rank of minor basilica at the time of the visit of Pope John Paul II in 1984.
    The organ on the west side of the Valère basilica, believed to have been built in 1435, is one of the oldest in the world. Its pipes are arranged to form a rough outline of a church; the larger pipes form two towers, and the smaller ones create a triangular church roof. - in: wikipedia

    Tuesday, June 11, 2013

    7th Swiss Meeting

    St. Gallen was the swiss city chosen to receive the 7th swiss meeting, which took place on May the 4th.
    I've been to this city in 2010, also to attend a postcrossing. The card was sent by Grace.

    St. Gallen is the capital of the canton of St. Gallen in Switzerland. It evolved from the hermitage of Saint Gall, founded in the 7th century. Today, it is a large urban agglomeration (with around 160,000 inhabitants) and represents the center of eastern Switzerland. The town mainly relies on the service sector for its economic base.
    The main tourist attraction is the Abbey of St. Gall, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Its renowned library contains books which date back to the 9th century. - in: wikipedia

    Sunday, June 9, 2013

    Bad Liebenwerda - Germany

    A german card sent by Manuela.

    Druck & Gestaltung
    Bad Liebenwerda is a spa town in the Elbe-Elster district, in southwestern Brandenburg. It is situated on the river Schwarze Elster, 57 km northwest of Dresden, and 28 km east of Torgau. - in: wikipedia
     

    Saturday, June 8, 2013

    Some more german officials

    German officials always arrive in quantity and variety.

     © Karten vom Künstler René Menges
    DE-2135023, sent by Ala.
    This is a card from Hamburg City Sporthafen. This port offers guests who visit the Hanseatic City by theirs sail or motor yachts, an attractive port of call and berth in the heart of the city.
    He is one of the attractions during the "harbor-birthday" because of national and international topflagged boots. The swimming boat-show of the "hanseboot harbor" that takes place every year together with the international hanseboot boat show makes the City Sporthafen to the centre of attraction for all water sports fans. Also the restaurant on the lightvessel is for many guests another reason to visit City Sporthafen. - in: http://www.city-sporthafen-hamburg.de/index_en.html

     © Schöning GmbH & Co. KG * Photo by H. Widera
    DE-2122269, sent by Sven.
    I'm not sure but i believe this is the one of the two lighthouses in the peninsula of Sylt Island called “Ellenbogen”. This one is Germany’s northernmost lighthouse.

     Skowronski & Koch Verlag, Berlin * Photo by Michael Haddenhorst
    DE-2180518, sent by Susanne.
    The Victory Column is a monument in Berlin, Germany. Designed by Heinrich Strack after 1864 to commemorate the Prussian victory in the Danish-Prussian War, by the time it was inaugurated on 2 September 1873, Prussia had also defeated Austria in the Austro-Prussian War (1866) and France in the Franco-Prussian War (1870–71), giving the statue a new purpose. Different from the original plans, these later victories in the so-called unification wars inspired the addition of the bronze sculpture of Victoria, 8.3 metres high and weighing 35 tonnes, designed by Friedrich Drake. Berliners, with their fondness for giving nicknames to buildings, call the statue Goldelse, meaning something like "Golden Lizzy".
    The Victory Column is a major tourist attraction to the city of Berlin. - in: wikipedia

     Verlag Johannes Oefner
    DE-2173601, sent by Sabine.
    Another card from Speyer. I've received quite a few from there in the last months.

    Rahmel Verlag
    DE-2110327, sent by Sabine.
    Bonn is a city on the banks of the Rhine River in the State of North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. It was the provisional capital of West Germany from 1949 to 1990 and the official seat of government of united Germany from 1990 to 1999.
    The Bonn Minster is one of Germany's oldest churches, having been built between the 11th and 13th centuries. At one point the church served as the cathedral for the Archbishopric of Cologne. However, the Minster is now a Papal basilica. - in: wikipedia