Saturday, April 28, 2012


Another mexican card but this is actually an official card from Belarus!!

 Photo by A & P Giberstein
BY-410931, sent by Sergey.
Puerto Vallarta is a Mexican balneario resort city situated on the Pacific Ocean's Bahía de Banderas, in the state of Jalisco.
Around the Bay, beautiful beaches, lush jungles and sparkling waterfalls offer many opportunities for the adventurous, while five star resorts, world-class shopping and gourmet restaurants satisfy even the most sophisticated traveler. Stretching from the south end of Old Town to central downtown, a newly extended and refurbished boardwalk along the ocean, called the Malecon, passes by any number of shops, restaurants, and hotels, and often plays host to mimes, breakdancers, clowns and artists.
The residents of Puerto Vallarta are very friendly and generally willing to help with directions and other requests. Old TownVallarta (or the Zona Romantica district) south of the River Cuale is more like a Mexican town and less like a tourist trap.
English is widely spoken, and as a tourist destination prices are higher than many other places in Mexico. - in: wikitravel

Mexican Unesco cards

Yesterday i've received my 650th Unesco site, none of these from Mexico though. These were sent by Nan "ConEtoiles". The 1st is from the Pre-Hispanic City and National Park of Palenque and the 2nd from Guanajuato.

Photo by Vicente Kramsky
Palenque is prime example of a Mayan city state in southern Mexico that flourished in the 7th century. The elegance and craftsmanship of the buildings, as well as the lightness of the sculpted reliefs with their Mayan mythological themes, attest to the creative genius of this civilization. The card shows the Palace and the temple of the Inscriptions.
The Palace, actually a complex of several connected and adjacent buildings and courtyards built up over several generations on a wide artificial terrace. The Palace houses many fine sculptures and bas-relief carvings in addition to the distinctive four-story tower.
The Temple of Inscriptions was begun perhaps as early as 675 as the funerary monument of Hanab-Pakal. - in: wikipedia

Guanajuato is a city and municipality in central Mexico and the capital of the state of the same name. The Historic Town of Guanajuato and Adjacent Mines are a World Heritage Site since 1988.
Founded by the Spanish in the early 16th century, Guanajuato became the world's leading silver-extraction centre in the 18th century. This past can be seen in its 'subterranean streets' and the 'Boca del Inferno', a mineshaft that plunges a breathtaking 600 m. The town's fine Baroque and neoclassical buildings, resulting from the prosperity of the mines, have influenced buildings throughout central Mexico. - in:
The building in the card is the Juárez Theater, built from 1872 to 1903.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Churches in Colombia

In the last weeks i've received new cards from Colombia. The 1st, was sent by Claus and it shows the Las Lajas Sanctuary and the 2nd, the San Francisco Church in Cali, was sent by Katelin "thebluemorpho".  

Photo by Omar Bechara
Las Lajas Sanctuary is a minor basilica church located in the southern Colombian Department of Nariño, municipality of Ipiales and built inside the canyon of the Guáitara River.
The present church was built in Gothic Revival style in 1949. The name Laja comes from the name of a type of flat sedimentary rock similar to shale.
The existence of a shrine in this location was recorded in the accounts of friar Juan de Santa Gertrudis's journey through the southern region of the New Kingdom of Granada between 1756 and 1764. The first shrine was built here in the middle of 18th century from straw and wood. It was replaced with a new, larger shrine in 1802, which in turn was extended and connected to the opposite side of canyon with a bridge.
Current church was built in the time period from January 1, 1916 to August 20, 1949, with donations from local churchgoers. It rises 100 m high from the bottom of canyon and is connected with 50 m tall bridge to the opposite side of the canyon. - in: wikipedia

 © Copyright by Humberto Castaño de Narvaéz
Cali, is a city in western Colombia and the capital of the Valle del Cauca Department. Cali is the third largest city in the country.
The San Francisco Church is a neoclassic temple built between 1803 and 1827. The church is part of the San Francisco Religious Complex, owned by the franciscan community in Cali.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Sumatran Orangutans

I've received these two cute orangutans today and i'm so in love with them. The animals are super cute and this card is super special because with this card, sent by Dee, i've now all the indonesian Unesco sites.

These animals live in the Bukit Lawang reserve, which is an animal sanctuary of Sumatran orangutan, located inside the Gunung Leuser National Park. Together with two other national parks, this park forms a World Heritage Site, Tropical Rainforest Heritage of Sumatra.

Photo by: Alain Compost

The Sumatran orangutan (Pongo abelii) is one of the two species of orangutans. Found only on the island of Sumatra, in Indonesia, it is rarer than the Bornean orangutan.
The average interbirth rates for the Sumatran orangutan is 9.3 years
Infant orangutans will stay close to their mother for up to three years. Even after that, the young will still associate with their mother. Both orangutan species are likely to live several decades; estimated longevity is more than 50 years. The average of the first reproduction of P. abelii is around 15.4 years old.
The Sumatran orangutan is endemic to Sumatra island and is particularly restricted to the north of the island.

The species has been assessed as critically endangered on the IUCN Red List since 2000. It is considered one of "The World's 25 Most Endangered Primates."

A survey in 2004 estimated that around 7,300 Sumatran orangutans still live in the wild. - in: wikipedia


An official from South Korea.

KR-35233, sent by Jinee.

I've no idea where in South Korea is this building located. There's no information about it on the card.

When i receive a postcard i really like to know a bit more about the place, building, monument on the card. Looking at the picture is not enought, i always want to learn something.


An official from St. Petersburg, Russia showing the Monument to Peter I, the Bronze Horseman.

RU-819713, sent by Lena.
The Bronze Horseman is an equestrian statue of Peter the Great in Saint Petersburg, Russia. Commissioned by Catherine the Great, it was created by the French sculptor Étienne Maurice Falconet. It is also the name of a narrative poem written by Aleksandr Pushkin about the statue in 1833, widely considered to be one of the most significant works of Russian literature. The statue came to be known as the Bronze Horseman because of the great influence of the poem. The statue is now one of the symbols of Saint Petersburg, in much the same way that the Statue of Liberty is a symbol of New York City. Both of them were designed and built by French artists.

The statue's pedestal is the enormous Thunder Stone, claimed to be the largest stone ever moved by man (1,250 t). Before carving, the stone weighed about 1500 tonnes. It was carved during transit to its current site. - in: wikipedia

Tuesday, April 17, 2012


An official from the Netherlands showing Amsterdam typical houses.

© Grégoir Hoppenbrouwers

NL-1136511, sent by Liesbeth.

These tall and narrow houses typify Amsterdam and come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes but with the recurrent high gable fronts. Inside, the stairways are very tight and narrow. To get furniture to the top floor, the hooks you see at the tops of the buildings are used to winch the furniture up the outside of the house.

Rendsburg - Germany

This is the last card sent by Sandra.

© Herst. u. Verlag Schöning & Co. + Gebr. Schmidt
Rendsburg is a town on the River Eider and the Kiel Canal in the northeastern part of Schleswig-Holstein, Germany.
The most prominent structure in town, the Rendsburg High Bridge, a railway bridge made of steel, 2,500m in length and 41m in height, was constructed in 1913 to take the Neumünster–Flensburg railway over the Kiel Canal from the relatively flat land on either side. It is the longest railway bridge in Europe.
Suspended from the railway bridge, a transporter bridge - one of only twenty ever built - traverses the canal. - in:

Friday, April 13, 2012

Sardinia II - Italy

And these are the other 3 cards Selina also sent me.

R. Balzano Edizioni

Tempio is a town c. 14,000 inhabitants in the Gallura region of northern Sardinia.
Tempio has an ancient history and is the centre of one of the two main areas that remained safe from Phoenician colonisation. Typical granite-stone architecture of the historical centre presents many similarities with southern Corsican towns. - in:

R. Balzano Edizioni

Located on the north west coast of Sardinia, holidays to Alghero have become increasingly popular in recent years, yet the city still retains its distinctive Catalan character. This derives from the influence of Pedro IV of Aragon who seized control of the town in the mid-fourteenth century and embarked on an intense period of colonization from Spain.
Today, Alghero manages to combine its role of tourist city with that of a thriving marina. This enables it to maintain a year round economy outside of the busy summer months.

Alghero is recognised as the most Italianesque of the holiday resorts in Sardinia with its old walled town on the sea front containing a labyrinthic network of narrow lanes, most of which are free from vehicles. - in:

R. Balzano Edizioni

Santa Teresa, set within the rounded rocks of the Gallura region, is one of the most sought after tourist spots in the North of Sardinia. Apart from the beauty of the beaches and the territory, the area offers many forms of entertainments and a vast choice of hotels, restaurants and bars. Thanks to tourism this small town has become an important destination on the map, not only for the connection with Corsica, but for the tourists from all over the world. Santa Teresa di Gallura is in fact the point of Sardinia closest to Corsica, so much so that in a clear day you can see the coast of the French island in the distance. From the port in Santa Teresa there is a Ferry that links the two islands daily. - in:
On the cards there's the Longosardo Tower, which was built in the 16th century and stands tall on a cliff overlooking the harbour, where one can enjoy a breathtaking sight as far as Corsica on a clear day.

Sardinia I - Italy

More cards from Italy and i still have more. A few weeks ago Selina sent me a FB message asking me if i'd like to trade with her. I said yes because i didn't have many Sardinia cards and the cards she was offering were really beautiful. These are just the 1st 3 of 6.

R. Balzano Edizioni

"Isola Rossa," in other words Red Islet, is a seaside village situated in north eastern Sardinia, its name is due to the red colour of the small islet that rises from the sea opposite the village.
Isola Rossa's greatest features lie in its sea and landscape. Originally a fishing village, it has been able to mould its identity and become one of the most evocative holiday destinations in Sardinia. The particular colours of the landscape, with pink granite rock, a luxuriant Mediterranean vegetation, white sandy beaches, shallow and crystal clear seabeds, together with the extraordinary vicinity of the many hotels and holiday homes make a holiday at Isola Rossa particularly relaxing and suitable for families. Its beautiful sea is ideal for surfing, windsurfing, snorkeling and scubadiving allowing one to explore the marvellous seabed covered with corals. The rich underwater life here makes the seabed very popular with recreational fishing lovers. - in:

Ediz. R. Balzano

Golfo Aranci, situated on the Northeast coast of Sardinia, is not only an important port with daily connections with main land Italy, but also a great holiday destination that offers beautiful beaches and tourist facilities at hand. Besides the fantastic beaches in the gulf itself, there are many enchanting stretches of fine white sand in the surrounding area such as Cala Moresca, Cala Greca, Cala Sabina and White Beach. - in:

Fotoedizioni Enrico Spanu

Villasimius is a small village of just 3000 inhabitants, about 50 minutes drive from Cagliari, that during the summer months counts up to 60.000 visitors per month.
All thanks to the innumerable, wonderful places, visible from the panoramic coastal road, that leave everyone breathless.
But Villasimius is not only beaches and sea; it also has plenty of discos, night clubs, pizzerias and restaurants. It's one of the preferred destinations for the "night people".
Past the village centre, on the right, you'll find the large beach of Campulongu appearing in the Capo Carbonara gulf, where you might often come across cormorants.
Along the road to Capo Carbonara, you'll arrive at the marina, recently restored and modernised for the needs of those yachtsmen who choose their boat as a means of transportation to this corner of paradise.
On the left, you'll find the beautiful Simius beach, characterised by the sea's warm temperature. This is due to the area's morphology, protected from the sea currents and abundant with marine animals and plants. - in:

Villa D'Este - Italy

I already had a card from this Unesco site in Italy but it was an old view, the quality of the picture wasn't that good and i wasn't even sure if it was a real card. This card shows the Hundred Fountains and it was sent by Gisela "protea".

Villa d’Este, masterpiece of the Italian Garden. With its impressive concentration of fountains, nymphs, grottoes, plays of water, and music, it constitutes a much-copied model for European gardens in the mannerist and baroque styles.

Versailles Palace - France

The Versailles Palace is one of the french monuments on my must visit list. The palace must be great and all those gardens, fountains and statues too.

This card is similar to another one i had in my favorites. Knowing that, Raquel Ferro sent it to me signed my the postcrossers at the belgian Antwerpen Meeting last March 31th.

The name of this bronze statue is Le Rhône, the guardian of Versailles. It was created by the famous French sculptor Jean-Baptiste Tuby.

Lanzarote - Spain

These are 3 of the 8 cards i've received from Sandra. Like the Qatar card, these are also used, written and stamped. They were sent in 1989 and 1994 to Germany.

Lanzarote, a Spanish island, is the easternmost of the autonomous Canary islands, in the Atlantic Ocean, approximately 125 km off the coast of Africa and 1,000 km from the Iberian Peninsula.
Lanzarote is the easternmost island of the Canary Islands and has a volcanic origin. It was born through fiery eruptions and has solidified lava streams as well as extravagant rock formations. The island emerged about 15 million years ago as product of the Canary hotspot.

The island, along with others, emerged after the breakup of the African and the American continental plates. The greatest recorded eruptions occurred between 1730 and 1736 in the area now designated Timanfaya National Park. - in: wikipedia

US-1601739 & US-1606304

Two official from the US. The 1st shows tow Hopi indians on the edge of Painted Desert on Route 66, Arizona and the 2nd the Waco Suspension Bridge in Texas.

Wallis Collection / Originally published by Colourpicture Publications

US-1601739, sent by Michelle.

Painted Desert where the soil and rocks are tinted blue, chocolate, purple, rose and vermillion.

Much of the Painted Desert region is within the Navajo Nation (Navajo and Hopi have lived in the region for at least five hundred and one thousand years, respectively.)
The Hopi are a federally recognized tribe of Native American people, who primarily live on the 2,531.773 sq mi (6,557.26 km2) Hopi Reservation in northeastern Arizona. - in:

US-1606304, sent by Sarah.

The Waco Suspension Bridge crosses the Brazos River in Waco, Texas. It is a single-span suspension bridge with a main span of 475 feet (145 m). Opened in 1869, it contains nearly 3 million bricks.

Every year on Independence Day, the bridge serves as a place where thousands of locals gather to watch fireworks. The Indian Springs Park marks the location of the origin of the town of Waco, where the Huaco Indians had settled on the bank of the river, at the location of an icy cold spring. - in: wikipedia

12th Postcrossing Meeting in São Paulo

Yes, the brazilian postcrossers in São Paulo love to meet. Last month took place their 12th meeting. This time they visited 2 exhibitions, War and Peace in the Latin America Memorial and a 2nd one about India in the Bank of Brazil Cultural Centre.

The card was sent by Déa and also signed by Renato, Ana, Gabi, Helô, Alessandra, Sabrina and Adriana.
The card shows one of Cândido Portinari's paintings, "A Flute Player", painted in 1958.

Candido Portinari (December 29, 1903 - February 6, 1962) was one of the most important Brazilian painters and also a prominent and influential practitioner of the neo-realism style in painting.

He died in Rio de Janeiro in 1962 of lead poisoning from his paints. - in: wikipedia

Wednesday, April 11, 2012


This card was a really great surprise. Is not that often that we receive official cards from someone we know, and i mean, personally know. The card is from Bolivia but it was sent from Finland by Heidi aka dollart.

Photo by Peter McFarren

FI-1369573, sent by Heidi.

The card shows a woman and an Aymara kid in Huayna Potosí, a mountain located about 25 km north of La Paz.

Huayna Potosí is the closest high mountain to La Paz, a city which is surrounded by high mountains, and itself is the highest capital city in the world. Huayna Potosí is roughly fifteen miles due north of the city, which makes this mountain the most popular climb in Bolivia.
The official height it's 6088m but almost all summiteers report an high around 6110m.

The Aymara are an indigenous ethnic group in the Andes and Altiplano regions of South America; about 2 million live in Bolivia, Peru and Chile. They lived in the region for many centuries before becoming a subject people of the Inca, and later of the Spanish in the 16th century. - in: wikipedia

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Souq Waqef - Doha

Another card sent by Sandra and this one is from a new country in my collection, Qatar. This is an used card, which means was written, and in this case, and stamped to someone else, which i really don't mind.

The card is from Doha, the capital city of Qatar and it shows the Souq Waqif, an important souq in Doha. Literally translated to "the standing market," this shopping destination is renowned for selling traditional garments, spices, handicrafts, and souvenirs. It is also home to dozens of restaurants serving cuisines from all over the world, as well as Shisha lounges. Although this market dates back at least a hundred years, it has been recently restored back to its original glory. It is now considered one of the top tourist destinations within Doha.

Thousands of people from across the region frequent this market to purchase traditional goods such as wool, traditional thobes, jewelry, and perfumes. - in: wikipedia

Cape Egmont Lighthouse - New Zealand

Sonja really wanted one of my cards and asked if i'd like to trade with her. I said yes and this was the card i chose. A volcano and a lighthouse, just great!!

© Oliver Bolch

The card was sent from Germany but it shows Cape Egmont Lighthouse and Mt. Taranaki, an active but quiescent stratovolcano in the Taranaki region on the west coast of New Zealand's North Island. The 2518-metre-high mountain is one of the most symmetrical volcanic cones in the world. Because of its resemblance to Mount Fuji, Taranaki provided the backdrop for the movie The Last Samurai.

Cape Egmont Lighthouse is a lighthouse at Cape Egmont in the Taranaki Region of the North Island of New Zealand. It is owned and operated by Maritime New Zealand. The light was manufactured by Simpson & Co., Pimlico, London, in 1864 and erected on Mana Island to the north west of Porirua in 1865 and in 1877 the light was dismantled and moved to Cape Egmont.

The light was fully automated in 1986. - in: wikipedia

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Antarctica animals

I've got these beautiful cards thanks to Emerich. The 1st shows 2 gentoo penguins and the 2nd a Weddell seal taking a swim into the cold Antarctica waters.

Claudio Suter Photographer

There are 17 species of penguins some of which are found as far north as the equator. Of the 17 species only six are found in Antarctica (Adélies, Chinstraps, Emperors, Gentoos, Macaronis, and Rockhoppers).
Gentoo, meaning "turban", refers to the whitish markings behind the eyes of this species. Gentoos range in size from 27 inches high (68 centimeters) and 12 pounds (5.5 kilos) in the south to 30 inches high (71 centimeters) and 13.5 pounds (6.2 kilos) in the north.
Most of their colonies run along the Antarctic Peninsula. Unlike the Adélies and Chinstraps, Gentoos stay with their mates throughout the year. A mating pair may reuse a previous site, although they typically change from year to the next. Gentoos commonly locate their nesting sites inland. To ease their burden walking to and from the sea, Gentoos establish a common path for everyone. This continuous use wears down the path and makes it easier to use.
Gentoo chicks stay with the parents for about eight weeks. During their 9th and 10th weeks, chick return home at night to be fed. Should the mating pair lose their first clutch of eggs, a second set is laid if earlier enough in the season. - in:

Claudio Suter Photographer

The Weddell seal (Leptonychotes weddelli) is the southernmost pinniped in the world. There are an estimated 800,000 of these animals in the waters off the Antarctic continent. While the overall population is stable, some colonies have seen a decline in numbers over the last decade. Hunting of the Weddell seal is permitted for commercial purposes; however, the 1972 convention for the conservation of Antarctic seals has set catch limits and prohibited the taking of individuals over the age of one year from September 1 to January 31. - in:

Because of its abundance, relative accessibility, and ease of approach by humans, it is the best studied of the Antarctic seals.

Weddell Seal pups leave their mothers at the age of a few months. In those months they get fed by their mothers fat and warming milk. They soon leave when they are ready to hunt and are fat enough to survive in the harsh weather

The Weddell seal was discovered and named in the 1820s during expeditions led by James Weddell, the British sealing captain, to the parts of the Southern Ocean now known as the Weddell Sea. However, it is found in relatively uniform densities around the entire Antarctic continent. - in: wikipedia

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Ban Chiang - Thailand

SLiew sent me this card of the Ban Chiang Archaeological Site a few weeks ago. Ban Chiang was one of my thai Unesco missing sites. Ban Chiang is an archaeological site in the Udon Thani Province of Thailand. It became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1992.

It was a Bronze Age village and a cemetery site and is known for its fine ceramics. Prior to 1967 Ban Chiang was a small village of 200 people who often unearthered pottery shards, iron and bronze tools and even bones as they farmed the area. Excavations began in 1967 and unearthed bones, pots and tools dating back to 3600BC. This was the cause of great excitements as prior to the discovery it was thought that the Bronze Age had originated in Mesopotamia.
The distinctive pottery discovered in Ban Chiang is painted in red on buff backgrounds in swirls and bands, showing a remarkable degree of artistry. The manufacture of the earthenware pots shows four distinct eras, the earliest being 3600-2500BC. The best pieces were made between 300BC and 200 AD. The area now offers a National Museum, a reconstruction of a ‘dig’ and an excavated burial area. - in:

Favorites from Thailand

These are two lovely cards from Thailand, both from Sukhothai and both sent by Claus.

Copyright, Art Media (Thailand) Co., Ltd
Practice and means of devout Buddhists.

Located 12 km to the west of today's Sukhothai, this was the capital of the Sukhothai Kingdom from 1238 to 1438 and contains many ruins from that period. Its importance has been internationally recognised and it is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The old city is a popular tourist attraction, and the site has seen much restoration since the 1960s. It is well maintained, exceptionally clean and well furnished with vendors, though with only a minimum of touts. The heavy restoration is worth noting, since with some ruins and Buddha figures it can lead to a feeling that it is a little over-sanitised, especially in the central zone. The other zones are much less "restored" and trips down unmarked tracks can lead to ruins in their untouched state.

Photo by Sukit Tejavanija

The best way to see the ruins in the Sukhotai National Historic Park is by bicycle. These can be rented from a shop opposite from the main park entrance. It is feasible to walk around the central and northern zones in 6 hours or so. There is also a 20 baht guided tour by electric tram available.

The best time to see the ruins is mornings when it's a little cooler and before the busses arrive, at noon when they have lunch, or after 16:00.

The whole site covers an area of approximately 70 square kilometres and is divided into multiple zones, for which - of course - every zone has an entrance fee. - in:

Mt. Kinabalu Summit Trail

If beach is not your thing, climbing the Mt. Kinabalu might be an option to enjoy your stay in Malaysia. Juts keep in mind that a permit is required to climb the Mountain and a guide is compulsory.

Lyan recently did part of the trail and send me this card.

The Farmers' Brand

Mt Kinabalu (4095m) is the tallest mountain in South-East Asia and is situated in the Kinabalu National Park in the province of Sabah in Malaysian Borneo. Thousands of tourists visit Kinabalu National Park each year and most come with the intention of climbing Mt Kinabalu.

Fortunately, Mt Kinabalu is one of the easiest peaks in the world to conquer. It takes just two days and climbers don't need any previous experience at mountain climbing. At sunrise, the views from the Mt Kinabalu's summit at Low's Peak are spectacular, making all the effort worthwhile.

Most climbers take two days to ascend and descend Mt Kinabalu. The eight-kilometre climb generally starts from the the Timpohon Gate near park headquarters (1800m), with an overnight stay at one of the guest houses at Laban Rata (3273m), before pushing on to the summit early next morning. Mt Kinabalu's summit is usually reached in time to view the sunrise, before returning to Laban Rata for breakfast. Climbers then descend the mountain, generally reaching the park headquarters by mid-afternoon. - in: