Saturday, 30 April 2016

Angkor

I have a very good friend that lived in Cambodia for a while and she loved, specially the people. I would love to go there, not only for the people but also to visit these wonderful monuments!

Angkor Wat
This postcard was sent by Steffi

 Angkor Wat (Khmerអង្គរវត្ត or "Capital Temple") is a temple complex in Cambodia and the largest religious monument in the world, with the site measuring 162.6 hectares (1,626,000 sq meters). It was originally constructed as a Hindu temple for the Khmer Empire, gradually transforming into a Buddhist temple toward the end of the 12th century. It was built by the Khmer King Suryavarman II in the early 12th century in Yaśodharapura (Khmerយសោធរបុរៈ, present-day Angkor), the capital of the Khmer Empire, as his state temple and eventual mausoleum. Breaking from the Shaiva 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 center since its foundation. 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


Angkor Thom
This postcard was sent from China by Dai Li

Angkor Thom (Khmerអង្គរធំ; literally: "Great City"), located in present-day Cambodia, was the last and most enduring capital city of the Khmer empire. It was established in the late twelfth century by King Jayavarman VII. It covers an area of 9 km², within which are located several monuments from earlier eras as well as those established by Jayavarman and his successors. At the centre of the city is Jayavarman's state temple, the Bayon, with the other major sites clustered around the Victory Square immediately to the north.
One inscription found in the city refers to Jayavarman as the groom and the city as his bride. 
Angkor Thom was abandoned some time prior to 1609, when an early western visitor wrote of an uninhabited city, "as fantastic as the Atlantis of Plato".- in: wikipedia

Historical Monuments of Mtskheta

Georgia is one of the favourite countries visited by Sini, who sent me this postcard. Nature, history, food and hospitable people are some of the things she enjoyed in this country. And she loved this cathedral, one of the three protected buildings of this site.

Svetitskhoveli Cathedral

Svetitskhoveli Cathedral (Georgianსვეტიცხოვლის საკათედრო ტაძარი, svet'icxovlis sak'atedro t'adzari; literally, "the Living Pillar Cathedral") is a Georgian Orthodox cathedral located in the historical town of MtskhetaGeorgia, 20 km (12 mi) northwest of the nation's capital of Tbilisi. It is the second largest church building in the country, after the recently consecrated Holy Trinity Cathedral of Tbilisi, and is listed as an UNESCO World Heritage Site along with other historical monuments of Mtskheta.
Svetitskhoveli, known as the burial site of Christ's mantle, has long been the principal Georgian church and remains one of the most venerated places of worship to this day. The current cathedral was built in the eleventh century by the architect Arsukisdze, though the site itself is even older dating back to the early fourth century and is surrounded by a number of legends associated primarily with the early Christian traditions. - in: wikipedia

Kathmandu Valley

Unfortunately, Nepal was hit in 2015 by a strong earthquake that resulted in several damages in the Kathmandu Valley. Boudhanath was one of the many buildings afected. On November 2015 reconstruction began.

Boudhanath
This postcard was sent from Canada by Jason

Boudhanath is a stupa in KathmanduNepal. (...) Located about 11 km (6.8 mi) from the center and northeastern outskirts of Kathmandu, the stupa's massive mandala makes it one of the largest spherical stupas in Nepal.
The Buddhist stupa of Boudhanath dominates the skyline. The ancient Stupa is one of the largest in the world. The influx of large populations of refugees from Tibet has seen the construction of over 50 Tibetan Gompas (Monasteries) around Boudhanath. As of 1979, Boudhanath is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Along with Swayambhunath, it is one of the most popular tourist sites in the Kathmandu area. - in: wikipedia

Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Taos Pueblo

It's incredible that there is still people living in these houses!

Taos Pueblo
 Taos Pueblo (or Pueblo de Taos) is an ancient pueblo belonging to a Tiwa-speaking Native American tribe of Puebloan people. It lies about 1 mile (1.6 km) north of the modern city of Taos, New Mexico, USA. The pueblos are considered to be one of the oldest continuously inhabited communities in the United States. This has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

North House, Taos Pueblo
This postcard was sent by Julie

The north-side Pueblo is said to be one of the most photographed and painted buildings in North America. It is the largest multistoried Pueblo structure still existing. It is made of adobe walls that are often several feet thick. Its primary purpose was for defense. Up to as late as 1900, access to the rooms on lower floors was by ladders on the outside to the roof, and then down an inside ladder. In case of an attack, outside ladders could easily be pulled up.

The homes in this structure usually consist of two rooms, one of which is for general living and sleeping, and the second of which is for cooking, eating, and storage. Each home is self-contained; there are no passageways between the houses. Taos Indians made little use of furniture in the past, but today they have tables, chairs, and beds. In the pueblo, electricity, running water, and indoor plumbing are prohibited. - in: wikipedia

Chaco Culture

Archaeological speaking and according to the anthropologist Brian Fagan, "Pueblo Bonito is an archeological icon, as famous as England's Stonehenge, Mexico's Teotihuacan, or Peru's Machu Picchu."

Pueblo Bonito, Chaco Canyon
This postcard was sent by Michelle

Pueblo Bonito (Spanish for beautiful town), the largest and best-known great house in Chaco Culture National Historical Park, northern New Mexico, was built by the Ancestral Puebloans, who occupied the structure between AD 828 and 1126.
In January 1941, a section of the canyon wall known as Threatening Rock, or tse biyaa anii'ahi (leaning rock gap) in Navajo, collapsed as a result of a rock fall, destroying some of the structure's rear wall and a number of rooms. The builders of Pueblo Bonito appear to have been well aware of this threat, but chose to build beneath the fractured stone anyway. The wall stood 97 feet (30 m) high and weighed approximately 30,000 tons; the Puebloans compensated by building structural reinforcements for the slab. Pueblo Bonito is considered the most famous Chaco site and was a large D-shaped building that housed many. - in: wikipedia

Mesa Verde National Park

These houses are really cool! Sometimes I wonder if we, cybernauts, would be capable of living in a place like this for one month, without internet, without mobile-phone and without electricity... 

Mesa Verde National Park is a National Park and World Heritage Site located in Montezuma County, Colorado. It protects some of the best preserved Ancestral Puebloan archeological sites in the United States.
The park was created by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1906. It occupies 52,485 acres (21,240 ha) near the Four Corners region of the American Southwest, and with more than 4,300 sites, including 600 cliff dwellings, it is the largest archeological preserve in the US. Mesa Verde (Spanish for "green table") is best known for structures such as Cliff Palace, thought to be the largest cliff dwelling in North America. - in: wikipedia

Spruce Tree House, Mesa Verde
This postcard was sent by Debbie

Spruce Tree House, the third largest cliff dwelling (Cliff Palace and Long House are larger), was constructed between A.D. 1211 and 1278 by the ancestors of the Pueblo peoples of the Southwest. The dwelling contains about 130 rooms and 8 kivas (kee-vahs), or ceremonial chambers, built into a natural alcove measuring 216 feet (66 meters) at greatest width and 89 feet (27 meters) at its greatest depth. It is thought to have been home for about 60 to 80 people.
The cliff dwelling was first discovered in 1888, when two local ranchers chanced upon it while searching for stray cattle. A large tree, which they identified as a Douglas Spruce (later called Douglas Fir), was found growing from the front of the dwelling to the mesa top. It is said that the men first entered the dwelling by climbing down this tree, which was later cut down by another early explorer. - inhttps://www.nps.gov/meve/learn/historyculture/cd_spruce_tree_house.htm

Square Tower House, Mesa Verde 
The Square Tower House is one of the stops on the Mesa Top Loop Road driving tour. The tower is the tallest structure in Mesa Verde. in: wikipedia
This 800 year old Square Tower House once had about 80 rooms. - in: the postcard

Far View House, Mesa Verde
Far View was one of the most densely populated parts of the mesa from A.D. 900 to about A.D. 1300. Nearly 50 villages have been identified within a half square mile area, and were home to hundreds of people. Today, several excavated and stabilized sites are linked by a trail system within a short walking distance. These surface sites include Far View House, Pipe Shrine House, Coyote Village, Far View Reservoir, Megalithic House, and Far View Tower.
The Ancestral Pueblo people were living at Far View at least 200 years before they began building the more famous Mesa Verde cliff dwellings. Excavation also reveals that many people chose to remain in their mesa top community well after many of their neighbors moved into the cliff alcoves. inhttps://www.nps.gov/meve/learn/historyculture/mt_far_view_sites.htm

Jiuzhaigou Valley Scenic and Historic Interest Area

These two postcards are really amazing! How beautiful can Nature be!

Waterfall of Pearl Shoal
 Pearl Shoal Waterfall (Chinese: 珍珠滩瀑布; pinyin: Zhēnzhū Tān Pùbù) is a waterfall located in Aba-Ngawa Tibetan and Qiang Autonomous Prefecture in northern Sichuan Province (China). The waterfall exists on one of the tributaries of the Bailong Jiang (White Dragon River).
Located in Jiuzhaigou, at an altitude of 2,433 metres (7,982 ft), the top of the waterfall is 162.5 metres (533 ft) in width. It has a fall of 40 metres (130 ft).


Jiuzhaigou
Jiuzhaigou (pronounced [tɕi̯òu̯ʈʂâi̯kóu̯]Chinese九寨沟; literally: "Valley of Nine Fortified Villages"; Tibetanགཟི་རྩ་སྡེ་དགུ།ZYPY: Sirza Degu) is a nature reserve and national park located in the north of Sichuan province, China.
Jiuzhaigou Valley is part of the Min Mountains on the edge of the Tibetan Plateau and stretches over 72,000 hectares (180,000 acres). It is known for its many multi-level waterfalls, colorful lakes, and snow-capped peaks. Its elevation ranges from 2,000 to 4,500 metres (6,600 to 14,800 ft). - in: wikipedia

Tuesday, 26 April 2016

Huanglong Scenic and Historic Interest Area

These colorful pools are really cool!

Huanglong
 Huanglong (simplified Chinese黄龙traditional Chinese黃龍pinyinHuánglóng; literally: "yellow dragon") is a scenic and historic interest area in the northwest part of Sichuan, China. It is located in the southern part of the Minshan mountain range, 150 kilometres (93 mi) north-northwest of the capital Chengdu. This area is known for its colorful pools formed by calcite deposits, especially in Huanglonggou (Yellow Dragon Gully), as well as diverse forest ecosystems, snow-capped peaks, waterfalls and hot springs. Huanglong is also home to many endangered species including the giant panda and the Sichuan golden snub-nosed monkey.

Huanglong
This postcard was sent by Wenjuan

Due to thousands of years of geological evolution, Huanglong consists of numerous unique landscapes of geological landforms. Glacial revolution, terrane structure, stratum of carbonic acid rock, tufa water and climatic conditions such as Arctic-alpine sun light have created this world-famous travertine landscape. These accumulated travertine landscapes and pools are Huanglong's main attraction. - in: wikipedia

Wulingyuan Scenic and Historic Interest Area

There are exactly 3013 tall quartzite sandstone pillars in this place!

Wulingyuan
This postcard was sent by Xinyu

Wulingyuan ([ù.lǐŋ.y̯ɛ̌n]Chinese武陵源) is a scenic and historical site in south-central China's Hunan Province that was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1992. It is noted for more than 3,000 quartzite sandstone pillars and peaks across most of the site, many over 200 metres (660 ft) in height, along with many ravines and gorges with attractive streams, pools and waterfalls. It features 40 caves, many with large calcite deposits, and two natural bridges, Xianrenqiao (Bridge of the Immortals) and Tianqiashengkong (Bridge Across the Sky). - in: wikipeadia

Mount Qingcheng and the Dujiangyan Irrigation System

Mount Qingcheng was the birthplace of Taoism

Shangqing Palace
This postcard was sent by Simi

Mount Qingcheng, located in the southwest of the Dujiangyan Irrigation System of China in Sichuan Province, is one of the most famous Taoist mountains in China.
The Shangqing Palace was originally built in the Jin Dynasty; however, only a part of the buildings that were constructed in the Qing Dynasty remain. Fortunately, it is still an attractive sight where you can enjoy the unique natural scenery and historic heritages of China. - in: https://www.travelchinaguide.com/attraction/sichuan/chengdu/mt_qingcheng.htm


Dujiangyan Irrigation System
This postcard was sent by Jasmine

Dujiangyan (Chinese都江堰pinyinDūjiāngyàn) is an irrigation infrastructure built in 256 BC during the Warring States period ofChina by the State of Qin. It is located in the Min River (Chinese岷江pinyinMínjiāng) in SichuanChina, near the capital Chengdu. It is still in use today to irrigate over 5,300 square kilometers of land in the region. The Dujiangyan along with the Zhengguo Canal in Shaanxi and the Lingqu Canal in Guangxi are known as “The three great hydraulic engineering projects of the Qin dynasty”. - in: wikipedia

Mount Sanqingshan National Park

This is another Chinese mountain with an outstanding scenery

Goddess Peak
This postcard was sent by Kun Hu

Mount Sanqingshan National Park, a 22,950 ha property located in the west of the Huyaiyu mountain range in the northeast of Jiangxi Province (in the east of central China) has been inscribed for its exceptional scenic quality, marked by the concentration of fantastically shaped pillars and peaks: 48 granite peaks and 89 granite pillars, many of which resemble human or animal silhouettes. The natural beauty of the 1,817 metre high Mount Huaiyu is further enhanced by the juxtaposition of granite features with the vegetation and particular meteorological conditions which make for an ever-changing and arresting landscape with bright halos on clouds and white rainbows. The area is subject to a combination of subtropical monsoonal and maritime influences and forms an island of temperate forest above the surrounding subtropical landscape. It also features forests and numerous waterfalls, some of them 60 metres in height, lakes and springs. - in: http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/1292

Mount Emei Scenic Area, including Leshan Giant Buddha Scenic Area

Mount Emei is one of the Four Sacred Buddhist Mountains of China and it was where the first Buddhist temple in this country was built

Wannian Temple

Wainian Temple, meaning thousands of years temple in Chinese, is located in the Mount Emei. This temple is one of the major temples in Mount Emei. Built in Jin Dynasty, originally called Puxian Temple, it is very pity that in 1946 it suffered a big fire, the beautiful wood temple halls were burnt completely and only the brick palace built with bricks in Ming Dynasty left. Later in 1953 two temples were rebuilt and the brick palace was also called "Beamless Hall".


It is said that there is a kind of special small frog on the Emei Mountain in the rectangle pond at the right side inside the Wannian Temple. In quiet evening, they will release pleasant sound all the year. All who have heard the sound describe this kind of frog as "Playing Instrument Frog". - in: http://www.topchinatravel.com/china-attractions/wannian-temple.htm


Leshan Gian Buddha
The Leshan Giant Buddha (simplified Chinese乐山大佛traditional Chinese樂山大佛pinyinLèshān Dàfó) is a 71-metre (233 ft) tall stone statue, built during the Tang Dynasty. It is carved out of a cliff face that lies at the confluence of the Minjiang,Dadu and Qingyi rivers in the southern part of Sichuan province in China, near the city of Leshan. The stone sculpture facesMount Emei, with the rivers flowing below his feet. It is the largest stone Buddha in the world and it is by far the tallest pre-modern statue in the world. - in: wikipedia

Mount Wuyi

"The serene beauty of the dramatic gorges of the Nine Bend River, with its numerous temples and monasteries" - This description in the UNESCO website and these two postcards are enough to make me want to visit this place!

Great King Peak
The Wuyi Mountains (Chinese武夷山pinyinWǔyí ShānPe̍h-ōe-jīBú-î-soaⁿ) are a mountain range located in the prefecture of Nanping, in northern Fujian province near the border with Jiangxi provinceChina. The highest peak in the area is Mount Huanggang at 2,158 metres (7,080 ft) on the border of Fujian and Jiangxi, making it the highest point of both provinces; the lowest altitudes are around 200 metres (660 ft).


Jade Beauty Peak
The region is part of the Cathaysian fold system and has experienced high volcanic activity and the formation of large fault structures, which were subsequently subject to erosion by water and weathering. The landscape is characterized by beautiful winding river valleys flanked by columnar or dome-shaped cliffs as well as cave systems. Peaks in the western portion of the Wuyi Mountains typically consist of volcanic or plutonic rocks, whereas peaks and hills in the eastern area are made up of redsandstone with very steep slopes but flat tops (Danxia landform). The Nine-bend River (Jiuqu Xi), about 60 kilometers in length, meanders in a deep gorge among these hills. - in: wikipedia