Monthly Archives: January 2014

Venice – the Queen of the Adriatic

Venice – the Queen of the Adriatic

“Getting lost is the only place worth going to”, says the wise man. If I were ever to get lost, I would choose to lose myself in Venice. The city of Venice is an enigma- a city that combines old world charms and the authentic beauty of Italia with an experience you will not find anywhere else on this earth. The Gondola Rides, the Italian serenades, the glorious piazzas, the sparkling Murano Glass, the vibrant masks of the Venetian Carnival- the charms of Venice has something to offer everybody.


History: The Queen of the Adriatic is nestled in the marshy lagoon of Venice, between the Po and the Piave rivers. Its unique location grants it stunning visual beauty and an unparalleled appeal that cannot be imitated. Historically, the city was the capital of the Veneto region. It was an important maritime center during the Renaissance and the Crusades and trade of luxury goods, wine and fine silk flourished. Venice is also home to the exotic Murano glass factory (originating from the island of Murano, a few kilometers off the main insland of Venice). This beautiful city is completely devoid of cars and is also called the ‘Pedestrian City’. People walk and use water buses and water taxis (called Vaporetto) to get around. Tourists can also avail the historic Gondola rides to enjoy a scenic tour along the Grand Canal.

It is believed that the original population of Venice consisted of refugees from surrounding Roman cities and countryside who were fleeing from Hun and German invasions. It became an Imperial power after the end of the Fourth Crusade, with the sacking of Constantinople. Venice carries a rich legacy of heritage. It was a center of excellence in art during the period of Renaissance.  The city is also the seat of magical symphony and operatic music. Thus when you are visiting Venice, you know that you are in cohorts with history.

The beautiful cityscape, rich art and musical heritage and the magical ambience of time standing still has made Venice one of the most sought after international tourist spots. The city has earned a bouquet of endearing sobriquets, ranging from ‘ a living museum ‘ to the ‘most beautiful city in the world’. Tourist magnets include the imposing structures like St. Mark’s Basilica, the Grand Canal and Piazza San Marco. Tourists also splurge on luxury destinations, hotels and cafes of Venice that offer an unique experience away from the mundane daily life strives.

Art, Music and Architecture

Venice boasts of the beautiful Venetian Gothic school of architecture characterized by generous doses of Byzantine, Ottoman and Phoenician influences. The city also has some beautiful buildings built in Renaissance and Baroque styles. The Doge’s Palace, Ca’ o’doro and Ca’ Pesaro are some architectural marvels bearing the indelible mark of Venice.

The Venetian School of Music is celebrated throughout the world. The Polychoral style is characterized by the splendor of multiple choruses and elaborate orchestra. The city is home to a multitude of celebrated music composers including Antonio Vivaldi and Giovanni. Thus, when you are in Venice, the one thing you cannot miss is definitely a music recital.

Talking about art, Venetian style is characterized by warm color pallet and a vibrant use of hues. Venetian Glass is also famous all over the world. The ornate glasswork techniques unique to Venice are splendid, to say the least. The delicate and beautiful jewelry made from hand blown Murano Glass is adored by connoisseurs all over the world. The glass factories attract tourists from all over the world to behold the masters create beauty in the fire.


The Carnival of Venice

Every Year, the annual celebration of the Carnival of Venice begins, with the end of the period of Lent, forty days before Easter. People dressed in elaborate costumes and intricate masks flood the Venetian streets, making it a marvelous spectacle to behold. Originally started in the Middle ages to commemorate the victory of Serenissima Repubblicaagainst Ulrico in 1162, the carnival was outlawed under the rule of the King of Austria. However, the carnival made a comeback in 1979 when the Italian Government decided to reconstruct the appeal of Venetian Heritage. Today, the Carnival sees a footfall of around 50 million people from all over the world.

Masks have always been an integral part of the Venetian way of life. It is believed that people used to cover their faces in response to the prevalent social hierarchy of old Venice. Today, however the Venetian mask is a relic of past legacy. The masks are made of everything from leather to intricate glasswork, gilded in gold and elaborately hand painted. Most recognizable masks include the Bauta, Columbina and The Plague Doctor ( a mask originally worn by healers to stop the spreading of plague). The Plague Doctor mask finds elaborate mention in Dan Brown’s novel ‘Inferno’.

One of the most appealing parts of the Venetian Carnival is the  la maschera più bella (the most beautiful mask) contest  at the last weekend of the Carnival.

carnival of venice

Gondola Ride

No mention of Venice can ever be complete without a dreamy ride I a gondola. Though today Vaporettos are used for transportation across Venice, tourists prefer a ride in a historic Gondola to admire the beautiful city of Venice. The Gondolas are usually wooden flat boats, adorned with luxurious cushions and rugs for tourist comfort. The Gondoliers dress in striped shirts and dark trousers and often sing magical Italian serenades, adding to the romance of the environment. They say a nighttime ride on a gondola in the Grand Canal of Venice (or even the narrow canals that criss cross the authentic Venice) is the most romantic experience one can ever enjoy. Just close your eyes and imagine the serenades of your gondolier under a starlit sky with your loved one, and you will know why.

gondola venice


Thus if you appreciate every thing beautiful, adventurous and romantic, you should add Venice to your must-visit list.

Colors of Portugal: Rainbow color Umbrella’s in Agueda

Colors of Portugal: Rainbow color Umbrella’s in Agueda

Portugal, an European country officially named as the Portuguese Republic is a developed country with an advanced economy and high living standards. The name ‘Portugal’ arise from the second largest city in here which is Porto. As much as one gets amazed to see the sun kissed beaches, fairy tale castles and the dramatic cliffs in Portugal, they also fall in love with the calmness and the serenity found while travelling this exquisite place. Portugal is also one of the most globalized and peaceful nations of the world. The country can show you many modernized settings but meanwhile it also holds historical destinations like Sagres and the University of Coimbra which are a must visit for all the travellers. This place has a rich history in painting and is a home to many spectacular art installations.  Nuno Gonçalves was the first well known painter of Portugal who belonged to the gothic painting era. Portugal has 156 cities where places like Lisbon, Algarve, Sintra are a few top places to visit in Portugal, Agueda is another major city that shall be on your must visit list. This city is bounded by Agueda River on the north, Certima River on the south, Serra do Caramulo on the east and Pateira de Fermentelos on the west. Agueda has a lot to offer in the form of its alluring vineyards and the successful wine industry, traditional clay pottery and handmade articles, and diverse species of wildlife and marine life.

But around a special time of the year what gets this Portuguese city filled with an outburst of rainbow colours? Umbrellas! Red, yellow, orange, blue, pink, green, different hues of umbrellas suspended in mid-air is a unique thing to observe in Agueda which makes for a splendid site for the tourists visiting Portugal as well as the local people here.


From July to September the streets of Agueda display a sea of colourful umbrellas hanging through strings in air which make them look like they are magically floating in the sky. This street installation is a part of Agitagueda Art festival, which is the local art festival at Agueda. But besides being a beautiful art installation it also protects the passers-by from the scorching heat over the sun baked streets and also saves them from a downpour of water. This street installation is the creation of a firm Sextafeira Produgues and is named as the Umbrella Sky Project. This firm works towards creating many urban installations out of which the Umbrellas in sky is I think the most colourful and the most quirky one!

colors of portugal

Patricia Almeida is a photographer who captured a lot of beautiful photographers of this outlandish art installation on the streets of Portugal. In her words when she saw this amazing canopy of colourful umbrellas in sky “She felt like a kid, amazed by all those colours”. In a few pictures clicked by her, we can see the whole street having a purple or a green hue due to the umbrellas, making for a vivid sight and a peaceful walk in the umbrellas’ shade without the hot summer sun over people’s heads. Another photographer Diana Tavares also clicked some fascinating shots of the umbrella covered sky over the top of Agueda.


When this installation of hundreds of colourful umbrellas was first developed it left the onlookers astonished and amazed. And now it has become a wonderful tradition which one must observe. The coming back of umbrellas after an year with a new pallete of colours or designs also doesn’t risk the fear of people getting bored of this umbrella fashion because they absolutely love it. The umbrellas still amaze the people and make them fall in love with Portugal. In one picture we can see umbrellas in such a pretty lemon like design making astonishing shadows over the walls.

After the pictures of this umbrella sky went viral many people are now visiting Portugal especially to see this amazing scene. As said by a spokesperson from the Umbrella Sky Project, “It’s really worth seeing the amazing scenery up close. The exhibition transforms reality in magic, catapulting us into a unique adventure of sensations that completes a visit to the festivals that take place around this time of year.” According to designers showcasing such a myriad of colourful umbrellas in sky promotes trade and commerce in the Agueda region and beautifies people’s daily lives that are living in this place.

colors of portugal 2

In this one picture we can see a worker painstakingly putting these pretty umbrellas in place. Sure there goes in a lot of effort to make this visual delight for the people around. But nevertheless the outcome is simply amazing.

Though Europe has an abundance of natural beauty in all its countries and their cities but Portugal’s Umbrella sky has a unique charm working for it. In some selected areas of Agueda the streets can be seen covered by these lovely umbrellas. If one is travelling nearby than this is a must visit place to see the beautiful canopy of umbrellas and if you are not travelling anywhere near Portugal then why not plan it now!

The Wonderland on Sea – Palm Jumeirah Dubai

The Wonderland on Sea – Palm Jumeirah Dubai

The Emirati city that believes in making world records, Dubai, is home to one of the most wondrous island settlement in the world. An artificial archipelago, constructed by Nakheel group, using Land Reclamation it is the first and smallest of the three islands planned in the Palm islands (Palm Jebel Ali, Palm Deira and Palm Jumeirah), it was the group’s effort to utilize the sea as land post the city being exploited vertically. Together these islands are to extend into the Persian gulf extending Dubai’s shoreline by around 520 km. Oh yes. There still are places that extend their shoreline instead of simply letting them denudate.


Name Game

People ask why the name?  The 5×5 km Palm Jumeirah is named after its shape. The island is shaped in the form of a palm tree with a trunk, a crown and 17 fronds. It is surrounded by a 11 km crescent island forming the long breakwater. The crown is connected to the mainland by a bridge whereas the crescent is connected to the top through a sub-sea tunnel. This island alone has doubled the length of Dubai’s coastline. Even more wondrous is that this island is visible in all clarity from space satellites. So we to see palm trees from up above.


The Architectural Wonder

Though most would debate if the word is architecture or construction, the use of a word is only insignificant to the technique of pouring sand fill onto the 10.5-metre-deep seabed. The island has been created using 94,000,000 cubic metres of sand and 7 million tons of rock.  The top 3 metres of reclamation was done by spraying calcareous sand over the surface of the rising island. This technique of dredging is also known as rainbowing. The process of reclamation was carried out by Dutch company “Van Oorg” at a cost of US$ 12.3 billion. Costly much? Would you be surprised when I tell you maintaining these islands is a different expenditure altogether- and not a thrifty one? Don’t be, that’s how money should be spent. Isn’t it?

We Connect


The transport to Palm Jumeirah is convenient with a monorail connecting the Gateway towers at the foot of the island to the Atlantis hotel. I do not want to overstress on records, but this monorail was the first one in Middle East. This Monorail line has a planned extension to the Dubai Metro Red line making commutation extremely convenient.

Apartment Watch


Your new apartment got finalized?  What? So Palm Jumeirah it is? You must be filthy rich, where did you land upon so much money? Pardon me for being slightly (maybe even overtly hyperbolic) but if not already that sure is going to be a trend of conversation for residents of palm jumeirah soon. The island which was planned to have signature villas, garden homes and canal cove  town homes as constructed by the Nakheels’ and more apartment building on flat type concepts as constructed by various real estate biggies and builders. The island’s housing when fully occupied would be one of the most densely occupied areas in the world with  high rise buildings giving ample space for a huge number of apartments. The escalated prices help no common man, though the investors are on a risky boat ever since the 2009 controversy surrounding the island and the price lowdown. Nevertheless, when the world is scheduled to end, who minds a home at one of the poshest locations in the world.

Luxuries Unlimited


And when you talk Dubai, you talk big. I don’t say that, Mohammad bin Rashid Al Makhtoom does. For those of you who wonder who are the people I am naming, He is the Sheikh of Dubai. He’s made sure Dubai homes the world’s largest, biggest and the best. And so it does, adding to the super luxurious residential apartments are the well built hotels on the island. Worth a special mention is the Atlantis Resort that was the first one to come up on the island. Its inauguration event alone was testament enough to the grandeur. Other famous hotels include Kempinski hotels and Residences, Palm Jumeirah Residences, Rixos and Waldorf Astoria to name a few. All of these are luxurious properties where you splurge but never regret. The Atlantis has attractions such as a water park, the Dolphin Bay and The Lost Chambers which witness huge footfall of tourists and locals alike.

Celeb Watch


What more? The island hosts, in all pride, the super luxurious, super hyped signature villas owned by the likes of Robert de Niro, Victoria and David Beckham, Shahrukh Khan, Abhishek and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Brad Pitt… more villas, more names. And you have the audacity to ask me so? So I tell you, you stand a strong chance of banging into one of these to name a few as you walk the shore. Ofcourse they have private areas allotted but who doesn’t like unbarricaded life- that too on the beach? So the next time you find yourself lost in Palm Jumeirah, please look around and in case you find yourself around Jannat( Heaven), Shahrukh Khan’s villa, make sure you get a picture for me? Please? I’ll add it to my collection of over a hundred already. But the point here is that you are going to holiday with the celebs. Why don’t I hear the shrieks? Pretentious ones atleast? Anyone? You even get the bonus of banging into the superstars vacationing with their family at Atlantis. Still no? You are all pretty boring people I guess – How I wish to be in the world of the looking glass. (Lewis Caroll fans anyone?)


Palm Jumeirah is not a place to miss. The fun, the thrall and the entire hype of being on a man-made island is worth every penny spent. Do not forget my suggestion fee though? Another picture of Jannat.

Madame Tussauds Wax Museum : Perfection Personified

Madame Tussauds Wax Museum : Perfection Personified

Madame Tussauds museum is a wax depository in London with branches in an exceedingly variety of major cities. It absolutely was supported by wax sculptor Madame Tussaud and was at one time referred to as “Madame Tussaud’s”. However the apostrophe is not any longer used. Madame Tussauds could be a major tourist attraction in London, displaying waxworks of historical and royal figures, film stars, sports stars and notorious murderers. Madame Tussauds is closely-held and operated by Merlin Entertainments. Marie Tussaud was born as Tussaud in 1761 in urban center, France. Her mother worked as a domestic help for Dr. Philippe Curtius in Suisse, Switzerland, who was a medico skillful in wax modelling. Curtius educated Tussaud the art of wax modelling.


Madam Tussauds Museum







Tussaud created her initial simulacrum, of Arouet, in 1777. Different far-famed individuals she modelled at that point embrace writer and American Revolutionary leader. Throughout the revolution she modelled several outstanding victims. In her memoirs she claims that she would search through corpses to seek out the cut heads of dead voters, from that she would build death masks. Her death masks were delayed as revolutionary flags and paraded through the streets of Paris. Following the doctor’s death in 1794, she transmissible his Brobdingnagian assortment of wax models and spent subsequent thirty three years motion around Europe. Her wedding to Francois Tussaud in 1795 Lententide a brand new name to the show: madam Tussaud’s. In 1802 she visited London, having accepted a request from Paul Philidor, a slide projector and mental representation pioneer, to exhibit her work aboard his show at the Lyceum Theatre, London. She didn’t fare notably well financially, with Philidor taking half her profits. As a results of the Napoleonic Wars, she was unable to come back to France, thus she traveled throughout nice United Kingdom|kingdom} and Ireland exhibiting her assortment. From 1831 she took a series of short leases on the higher floor of “Baker Street Bazaar” that later featured within the Druce-Portland case sequence of trials of 1898-1907. This became Tussaud’s initial permanent home 1836. One in all the most attractions of her depository was the Chamber of Horrors.

Other famed folks were other to the exhibition, together with Nelson, and Sir Waltor Scott.  A number of the sculptures done by Marie Tussaud herself still exist. The gallery originally contained some four hundred completely different figures, however hearth harm in 1925, let alone German bombs in 1941, has rendered most of those older models defunct. The casts themselves have survived (allowing the historical waxworks to be remade), and these is seen within the museum’s history exhibit. The oldest figure on show is that of ma’am courtier. Different faces from the time of Tussaud embrace Maxmillien Marie Isidore de Robespierre and George III. In 1842, she created a self portrait that is currently on show at the doorway of her repository. She died in her sleep on fifteenth April ,1850.










By 1883 the restricted area and rising value of the Baker Street web site prompted her grandchild (Joseph Randall) to commission the building at its current location on Marylebone Road. The new exhibition galleries were opened on 14 July 1884 and were an excellent success. However, the building prices, falling thus before long when shopping for out his relation Louisa’s  share within the business in 1881, meant the business was under-funded. A limited company was shaped in 1888 to draw in recent capital however had to be dissolved when disagreements between the family shareholders, and in Gregorian calendar month 1889 Tussaud’s was oversubscribed to a gaggle of businessmen light-emitting diode by king Josiah Poyser. Edward White, a creative person discharged by the new house owners to save lots of cash, allegedly sent a letter bomb to John Theodore Tussaud in June 1889 in revenge. The primary sculpture of a young Winston S. Churchill was created in 1908, with a complete of 10 created since.

Steve Jobs At Tussauds

Steve Jobs At Tussauds








Madame Tussaud’s wax deposit has currently big to become a serious traveler attraction in London, incorporating (until 2010) the London Planetarium in its west wing. It’s dilated and can expand with branches in Amsterdam, Bangkok, Berlin, Blackpool, Hollywood, Hong Kong, Las Vegas, the big apple town, Shanghai, Sydney, Vienna and Washington, D.C. Today’s wax figures at Tussauds embrace historical and royal figures, film stars, sports stars and renowned murderers. referred to as “Madame Tussauds” museums (no apostrophe), they’re in hand by a leisure company known as Merlin Entertainments, following the acquisition of The Tussauds cluster in could 2007.Millions and uncountable individuals have flocked through the doors of dame Tussauds across the world since they initial opened over two hundred years agone and it remains even as widespread because it ever was. There ar several reasons for this enduring success, however at the guts of it all is sweet, old school curiosity.Today’s guests are sent on a singular, emotionally-charged journey through the realms of the powerful and celebrated. The museum-style ropes and poles have gone thus guests will really rise, shut and private with A-list celebrities, sporting legends, political heavyweights and historical icons, re-experiencing the days, events and moments that created the globe quote them. It is probably the best known form of modern art today.

The Mysterious Bermuda Triangle, Mysterious Devil Triangle

The Mysterious Bermuda Triangle, Mysterious Devil Triangle

This mysterious place situated in the western region of North Atlantic Ocean. It is also known as the Devil’s Triangle. A lot of aircrafts and ships have been lost and their disappearance became a mystery. This place is recognized by a lot of countries and people fear going anywhere near it. But the US Navy believes that the triangle of this kind does not even exist and they have not recognized this spot on the Geographic names. It is also not recognized by the ‘World Wide Fund For Nature’ who made a list of the moist dangerous places in water for shipping in the year 2013. Even the insurance companies do not consider the existence of this place and do not charge premiums for this area’s shipping. The disappearances of ships and aircrafts have led people to believe in some paranormal activities or existence of extra-terrestrial beings.

Different writers have given different set of vertices of this triangle lying in different directions. Some say that it has a vertex in Miami, in Florida Peninsula, etc. But the effective area of the triangle is estimated to be somewhere from 1,300,000 square kilometers to 3,900,000 square kilometers.  Many accidents have been reported but the exact details of the accident are never known because no one survived. Every writer has a different version of the story and different locations and type. But this place is not defined in any map of the government agencies of Unites States as their Board does not believe in the existence of any such triangle. Many ships travel daily from this place in America and Europe and also the Caribbean islands. A lot of travel between Florida and the islands is through cruise ships crossing this path. And not just the ships, even a lot of air travel is done through this route. Aircrafts, both commercial and private, travel over the Bermuda triangle toward Florida or Caribbean and South America.


The history behind this place is traced back to 1950 on 15th September. On this day, Edward Van Winkle Jones published his article in the ‘Miami Herald’ about and alleged the unusual disappearances in the area of Bermuda Triangle. Again after two years, there was another mention of this place in the print media. After that, there was no end to the discussion and books started publishing and flooding the market. Then the discussion moved from the print media to the video world and documentaries and films were made. The most famous work on this place was done by Lawrence David Kushe, who was a librarian and wrote a book entitled: ‘The Bermuda Triangle Mystery: Solved’. He argued that the claims of other writers are unnecessarily exaggerated, and cannot be verified. His work exposed a number of inconsistencies and inaccuracies. To the untraceable leftovers, he said that those untraceable leftovers also exist in the Pacific Ocean and every other ocean. There is nothing very special about the place.


There are many explanations proposed for this kind of accidents over the triangular area. One of the natural explanations of the whole thing is the Compass variations, which is the most believed explanation out of all. Sailors and pilots often use magnetic compass. People believe that there are some unusual and local magnetic anomalies in the area. There is no proof of the anomalies what so ever but the magnetic variations are still believed to exist. We know for a fact that the Compass shows the directions as per the magnetic variation of the magnetic poles of the earth. This also explains the accidents in the air.

But the authorities always go with the explanation that focuses on human mistakes. They believe that any loss of aircraft or ships and even the loss of human life is because of the human error. But human error does not explain the coincidence of those errors in the same area or region every time. Others say that this is because of the violent weather in the region which has powerful storms or tropical cyclones. This explains the thousands of lives lost in the region and ships and planes worth billions of dollars flown in water.


There are a few groups of people who believe that the reason for these accidents and tragedy of the area is due to some sort of supernatural effect. There are people who believe in the existence of a complete continent of Atlantis over the area which eventually was drown in water and lost mystically. Another story connected to this one says that there is a submerged rock formation off the Bimini in Bahamas, and is called Bimini road. This makes a triangle of some sort. There is another story which is found funny by a large number of people and that is about the effect of UFOs (Unidentified Flying Objects).

Many writers gave a lot of theories and a lot of explanations for this mystical place. The writers wrote books and articles about this and many turned to be portrayed in documentaries and films which became very famous and people started judging the presence of the triangle and the existence of some sort of abnormality in the area. People started enjoying the discussion over time and many conferences and debates were organized to further continue to explore the place and travel near it.

The Beauty of Kathmandu, Nepal

The Beauty of Kathmandu, Nepal

We all know that Kathmandu also known as the “Tri-city” or “KTM” is the capital of Nepal. The agglomerate is the biggest urban agglomerate of Nepal. The core city of this agglomerate is the Kathmandu metropolitan city and some of its fellow cities are Thimi, Bhaktapur, Kirtipur and Patan. The population of the Kathmandu metropolis is around 975,453. The city area is 50.67 square kilometers large and has 19,250 per km2 inhabitants. The city lies on the bowl-shaped Kathmandu valley and is elevated at an elevation of 1,400 meters approx. the beauty of the place is expanded by the mountains surrounding the place. Shivapuri, Nagarjun, Chandragiri and Phulchoki are the four prime mountains. The Kathmandu valley is listed as the place in the country with the highest population density as twelfth of Nepal’s population is in the Kathmandu valley. The city of Kathmandu is rich in culture and has an amusing history. People of Kathmandu are very fond of religious and cultural festivals.  Most of the people residing in Kathmandu are Hindus and some follow Buddhism.

The economy of Kathmandu is basically from its tourism. It is ranked as the top travel destination place in Asia and is on the list of the top 10 destination places to travel in the world. There are three zones namely Janakpur, Narayani and Bagmati on the central region of Nepal. Kathmandu comes under the Bagmati region.  Many people visit Kathmandu for mountaineering and trekking on the famous Mount Everest. But there are many beautiful places in Kathmandu which people will want to see.


“Durbar Square” is one of the popular place in Kathmandu which lies in the older city area. UNESCO has declared the area as the World Heritage Site. Kathmandu’s old Royal Palace and some magnificent temples are a part of Durbar Square. The Hanuman Dhoka is a famous temple in the Durbar Square. The temple is named after Hanuman, the monkey God. The Jagannath temple and the huge statue of King Pratap Mall are the attractions of the place. “Jhocchen” is the place which is minutes away from the Durbar Square. This is the place which was the resident of hippies in the past. This ancient area of the city is very interesting to watch.


“Pashupathinath Temple” is a beautiful and famous temple placed on the banks of the river Bagmati and devoted to the Hindu Lord Shiva. The temple is situated five kilometer east of Kathmandu and has an immense structure. The roof is golden and two tired and the four main doors of the temple are of silver. . People from all over India come there to attend the famous Shivratri featival. Every year around spring this holy place of pilgrimage attracts thousands of Hindu devotees. Even some areas of worship are only limited for the Hindu people. People of other religions are not allowed to enter those regions of the temple. People can also have a sight of the incineration taking place at the bank of the river.

Another amazing image to see at Kathmandu is the “Boudhanath” stupa. This stupa is very old as it is said to be built in 5th century AD. It is one of the largest Buddhist stupas in the world which lies 6km east of Kathmandu. Thus, many Hindu as well as Buddhist devotees visit this temple frequently. Watching them worship is an amazing sight for the tourist also. There is one more temple named “Budhanikantha” which is situated 8km to the north of Kathmandu. The temple is at the grounds of Shivapuri hill. This statue of Lord Vishnu is made up of colossal stones and is very remarkable. The base of this massive statue is the bed of snakes.


The hills of west Kathmandu has a long mythological Buddhist temple which is locally known as the “Monkey Temple”. “Swayambhunath Stupa” is the name of this sacred temple for outsiders. People can have a sight of many monkeys living in the region around the temple. This is the reason behind the name “the Monkey temple”. The stupa is 2500 years old and is at a height of 77m above the ground. The statue is painted with eyes on all the four sides of the statue indicating the all-seeing eyes of Buddha. The eyes also represent that the Buddha is watching over the people and is also watching the wrong and the right doers. This shrine of Buddhist is very famous. There is a temple of “Haratima” also where both the Hindus and the Buddhist can be found worshipping.


The south of Kathmandu also has a temple “Dakshinakali” which is about 21 km from the country. “Dakshinakali” is the most beautiful temple in Nepal. From the temple there is an amazing and spectacular view of Himalayan ranges, beautiful landscapes and stepped farmlands. The sacrifice of many goats and roosters were taken to worship the most powerful Hindu Goddess “Dakshinakali”. This ritual is repeated twice in a week typically on Tuesdays and Saturdays. On the back journey from the temple you can find many Lama Monks chanting the prayers at the “Shesh Narayan temple”.

The whole place of Kathmandu is filled with many temples. The names of two other temples which are in Kathmandu itself are “Patan Durbar Square” and “Changu Narayan”. These two temples are also a delight to watch. Other than the temples Kathmandu is known for its breathtakingly beautiful waterfalls. Tourism in Kathmandu is promoted not by the king of Kathmandu only but also by the people of Kathmandu also.

The Islamic Pilgrimage: Mecca and Medina

The Islamic Pilgrimage: Mecca and Medina

Mecca or Makkah is a city in Hejaz, Saudi Arabia. This is the capital city of Makkah Province of Saudi Arabia. The population of this city is over two million people which is less than one-third of the visitors to this city. The number of tourists of this place is more than thrice the population of the city. But these visitors and tourists are not always present. They come every year during the twelfth lunar month of the Muslims known as the Hajj period in the month of Dhu al-Hijjah. On an annual analysis, it was found that over 15 million Muslims come to visit this holy city per year and mostly during the Hajj days. But there is a very weird rule and fact of the city which prohibits the non-Muslim people to enter the city, which is unfair to the world.

The reason why this place is so special and dear to the Muslims is that it is the birthplace of Lord Muhammad and is a site where the Quran was first revealed. Therefore, it is the holiest city in the Islamic culture and every Muslim is obligated to visit if he is able enough. This means if a Muslim fellow has enough money and physical fitness and is an adult, then he must visit Mecca once in his life. This pilgrimage is called Hajj. The direction of the place is the direction in which all the Muslims pray. Another Muslim pilgrimage is Umrah. This is not obligatory like Hajj but Quran recommends it.


The pilgrimage is to visit the Masjid al-Haram, which is the world’s largest mosque. This mosque is popularly known as Haram, and the Grand Mosque which surrounds the Kabba. The buildings in Mecca are 1500 years old and most of the heritage is lost. During the pilgrimage, the crowd mostly goes out of the control and several incidents take place in such large number of people. Once in 1990, a ventilation system failed in the tunnel for pedestrians and it was very crowded during that time. Approximately 1500 people died by suffocating.

Until 1925, Mecca was ruled and empowered by descendants of Muhammad. It was in 1925, that the city was absorbed by Saudi Arabia. The city is very beautiful and very large. It is expanded tremendously far and has wonderful sights and monuments. The world’s 3rd tallest structure is in Mecca which is Abraj Al Bait, which is also famous as Makkah Royal Clock Tower Hotel. Mecca has many historical sites which has great architectural importance, for instance, Ajyad Fortress.

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Medina or Madinah is famous as the “Radiant City” was officially known as ‘al-Madinah al Munawwarah’. This city is situated in the Hejaz region to the west in Saudi Arabia and is the capital city of Al Madinah Province. The original name of this place was Yathrib which was personally changed by Muhammad to Medina which means ‘city’. The law here permits non-Muslims to enter the city but not cross the city centre. The historical city was oval shaped and was surrounded by 30 to 40 feet high walls build during the 12th century. It had four gates. Out of them, Bab-al-Salam is the most remarkable and most known for its beauty is famous as the Egyptian gate. It had gardens, plantations, yards and houses. But the city was demolished by the Saudi era and rebuilt with taking Al- Masjid al-Nabawi in the centre.

The city is second most holy place for Muslims after Mecca. This is because of the fact that prophet Muhammad was buried here. He was buried under the Green Dome and his followers Abu, Bakr and Omar were buried in the prophet’s house which is next to the Green Dome. The city was the power base of Islam where Muhammad and his followers: Abu, Bakr, Omar, Othman and Ali, developed the religion. This is the reason that the Islamic Calendar has Year 1 as the one when Muhammad and his followers emigrated from Mecca to Medina.

Medina is almost 340 kilometers (210 miles) away from Mecca and approximately 190 kilometers (120 miles) away from the Red Sea coast. The Hejaz territory’s most fertile part is covered by Medina. It has a vast plain and is surrounded by hills and mountains and has a great natural view in every direction.


The major attractions of the city are its three oldest mosques. One is Quba Mosque which is the very first Mosque in history of Islamic religion. Second is Al-Masjid an-Nabawi and is called the Prophet’s Mosque. The third is the Masjid al-Qiblatain which is the Mosque of the two Qiblahs where the direction of Muslim prayer was switched. Other than these, there are the tombs of Fatimah, Muhammad’s daughter and the tomb of his grandson Hasan at the Jannat al Baqi across the mosque. The tombs of Abu Bakr, the first caliph and the father of wife of Muhammad and Umar, the second caliph are also located in Medina. But all the mosques are of the times of Muhammad. Under the Saudi rule, these have burned twice and reconstructed. Since the Saudi rule, many historical and religious places were destroyed.

The Blue Eye of Albania, The Natural Spring

The Blue Eye of Albania, The Natural Spring

As the name might confuse you, Blue Eye is the biggest spring of all the natural springs in world, having the clearest of water you would have ever seen before. Located in South of Albania and also known by the name of Syri kaltër, there is a beautiful natural phenomenon occurring in this spring of water. It has a vibrant blue colour just like many other lakes of Albania in its centre, and a lighter shade of blue on its sides. This makes the water spring look like a blue eye with its dark coloured pupil in centre and a light coloured iris around. On the sides of the spring is green vegetation with oak trees, shadows of which give an impression of eye lashes thus making the whole spot all the more beautiful and mesmerizing. The name Blue Eye was supposedly given by an engineer in a hydro power station. When he saw the enthralling allure of this place he got reminded of the blue eyes of his beloved and gave this name to the water spring.

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The exact depth of Blue eye is still not known. However it is reported to be about 45 meters. An Albanian environmental journalist Xhemal Mato was the first one to dive in it. As told by Mato, when he dived in that deep blue water, he felt a strong current of water which appeared to be coming out from a dark tunnel. The current was so strong that he had to hold his diving mask and the pressure kept on increasing on going deeper. On reaching till some 20 feet Mato was unable to go further and decided to come back. After him a lot of other divers also went deep into the waters of Blue Eye but the strong current and the low temperature hasn’t allowed anybody to analyze its actual depth yet.

The Blue Eye water spring is not just famous for its captivating beauty but there also a few stories known to people which suggest this spring of water possess supernatural powers. One theory claims that a clever peasant burned a dragon and fed it a mule loaded with touchwood and cinder. Out of this dragon the water sprung creating this piece of nature. It is also said that in October 2002, there was an Italian representative who wanted to exploit the underground water and for this he came to Sardana. But all of a sudden the spring turned white with all its water dried out. This looked like an iris of a blind man. People believe that this was a punishment for anyone who tries to ruin the spring and there are divine powers bestowed in this water.

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The clear blue water of the spring forms bubbles on its surface which makes for a stunning site. The water of this spring feeds the 25km long Bistrica River. Electricity for the south of Albania is produced from this river. When you throw a stone in the centre of the pool it is pushed back at the surface after a while which makes a lot of tourists try this. The Blue Eye spring has a diameter of 10 meters and the temperature of the spring is maintained around 10 degrees Celsius. Although, one can take a dip in its water but going deeper than a foot is difficult.

Presently the Blue Eye is visited by a large number of tourists, especially German, Dutch, British and Polish, during the summer time. But this has not always been like this. During the communist days the Blue Eye was not open for general public and had a high level of reservation. Only the members of the ruling party and the communist elite could visit the place and enjoy its magnificence.

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While visiting Albania this place is a must visit as its stunning scenic beauty can leave anybody spellbound. The Blue Eye is nearly 8 miles from Sarande and located off the road between Saranda and Gjirokastra on Lonian Sea. One can park their car just a little away from the spring and take a lovely walk amidst the forest of hazelnuts, walnuts, cherries, pines and fir trees. After walking over a wooded path along the river you will step into the paradise. There are also a couple of beautiful restaurants around this spot where tourists can relax and indulge in some food. One restaurant located near the Blue Eye waterfall has its tables built on a balustrade which is over a fresh spring water river. Over here one can enjoy traditional Albanian food like grilled fish and roasted lamb and also feel cool breeze over them.

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Blue Eye is currently being used as a picnic spot for many tourists who also tend to create mess and filth around. The iris of the spring has become bit polluted due to plastic bottles thrown around and other materials. The local tourism of Albania is very proud of having this natural wonder in their country and Blue Eye is included in all the tourist guides provide by the tourist board. However people also need to respect this treasure and keep it clean and beautiful as ever.

The Garden of the Gods: A Beautiful Oasis in Colorado, US

The Garden of the Gods: A Beautiful Oasis in Colorado, US

Who doesn’t wants to go for a tour having the scenic beauty to an extent that it mesmerizes the viewer with its artistic effect? Yes, this place is the most visited place in Shwanee National Forest with its vivid formation of rocks and trails that makes it hits the lists of the tourists. This place is situated in the City of Colorado Springs and most beautifully defines the traditional city park. The place is responsible for adding tourism to the city with the visitors from all 50 states including more than 60 countries and has been said as the National Natural Landmark of the Colorado Springs.

Defining its name

The place was founded by two surveyors accidentally who wish to explore the town and started from Denver to explore city Colorado. This place which was first discovered in August 1859 was called “Beer Garden” because one of the surveyor said that it would be a capital place for a beer garden while his other companion says that it is the place where all gods will assemble and hence combining the names of both it was called “The Garden of the Gods” which is the best name describing the beauty of the place.

A National Significance become City Park

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This was done on December 22, 1909, when the Perkin’s wish to donate this ravishing place to the world as a forever gift was fulfilled.  Going to some flashback, the whole story is based on the overwhelmed and socially responsible man Charles Elliott Perkin.  His friend, General William Jackson Palmer who founded Colorado Springs asked him to buy this land of 240 acres which was called “The Garden of the Gods”.  Afterwards, he himself purchased some more 240 acres and this whole area of 480 acres together known as the “The Garden of the Gods” was donated to the Colorado Springs by his children after his sudden death in 1907.

This donated 480 acres have now extended to 1,367 acres and forms the major lucrative source of tourism at the center of the Colorado Springs and is still free to the world. This precious gift is and will remain free to the entire world and hence is turned this national significance was turned into a city park.


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The place is well known for its contrasting features in terms of climate, mountains, biology, geology and scenery. Some new-fanged were found only in this area like a honey ant was discovered and was named after this place.  Some others like mule, deer, fox and some bighorn sheep were only found in this area.  Likewise, this place is home for more than 130 new species including Theiophytalia (a dinosaur specie), white-throat-ed swifts and canyon wrens.


The lure of the park is its sedimentary beds of various colors like deep-red, pink and white with the variety of stones such as sand-stones, limestone or conglomerates. These were initially horizontally rested forming the beds of the sediments which after the immense forces of various glaciers, uplift movement of the Rocky Mountains and Pikes Peak Massif or the terrific  sand dunes that changed the shape of these massive stones. The result of such erosion and eruptions led to the vertical titled, beauty personified ranges in “the Garden of the Gods” and is now counted in one of the richest geological formations of the world.

Attractive Features of the park

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The park pulls almost two million visitors a year and is the most visited site of the city. The park has almost 1.5 miles of paved path for the pedestrians. Also, there are two yearly events namely Pro Cycling Challenge Prologue and the Recreational bike rides which are also the crowd pulling factors of this area.

The place is also famous among the rock climbers because of its steep and strange mountain ranges allowing the climbers an adventurous climb. Although this sounds audacious, but there are some guidelines which need to be followed before climbing these bizarre set of ranges which are mentioned in the “Technical Climbing Regulations and Guidelines” having some of the constraints like proper required equipment s, a climbing buddy or following some pre-established routes. Also, climbing is only allowed to some registered climbed having proper climbing equipment s in order to avoid the fatalities that have happened in the past.

Visitor’s View

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To locate this most photographed area of the city, you need to go 1805 N. The formation of the garden with the amazing red rocks is presented in the form of short movie named “How did those Red Rocks get there”?  Also, it has an award winning gifts shops and balcony-side cafeterias which has increased the number of people visiting this place. The profit earned from these gifts shops and cafeterias of the park are used in the maintenance and management purposes of the park.

Taking all the above points into consideration, “The Garden of the Gods” is a perfect place from the tourism point of view. You can hike trails, see the magnifying beauty of the red stones, can go for rock climbing. So, this place is the perfect place to start your journey and make it the most memorable one.

The Stirring Valley of Bovec, Italy

The Stirring Valley of Bovec, Italy

The Littoral region Bovec is situated in the northwestern Slovenian Alps, which is near the border of Italy. It is the central arrangement of the metropolis of Bovec. Earlier, it was the historic region of Georzia but now only a few minority people stay here.

Bovec was being in notice in the year 1174, but if go inside the deep history then we see have to go to the Roman road through the Predal and the findings from the early Iron Age. Bovec was also an important route for traders in between the port of Wienna and Triest across the town. Studies showed that the area of Bovec was exaggerated by the battles of First World War.

The city of Bovec has a rich history. It belongs to the Patriarchate of Aquileia in the 1192. In 1420, it was a division of Tolmin, which was further occupied by the Republic of Venice and integrated further into the Domini di Terraferma. Various regions of Soca River were included by the Emperor Maximilian I in the Austrian Habsburg in the year 1509 which was further added to the Georzia, which was already inherited in the 15th century.


When the First World War was taken placed, the area of landmark of the bloody clash of the the Battles of Isonzo, between the Austro-Hungarian and the army of Italy during the months between June 1915 to November 1917, which shattered the country completely. Bovec’s military cemetery east was expanded and the leftovers of Italian and Austro-Hungarian soldiers were relocated to a single cemetery from the distributed cemeteries of the surrounding. More than 600 soldiers are concealed in the cemetery where graves covered the entire cemetery area; the south quarter of the region has rigid grave marks. Even though there are no details of the person inside on the grave. Bovec is the main site of the mass grave of the Second World War. It is located near the entry of town cemetery. The graves were also maintained throughout the communist era with where funds were provided by the Graves Commission of German War.

When comes the period of World War II, between 1943 and 1945, the region was occupied by forces of Nazi German and a part of Slovene partisans were dynamic in the area. Various regions of Bovec were extremely damaged by the futile earthquake of 1976. Another thunder was experienced on the Ritcher scale with a magnitude of 5.6 which shook the city in the year 1998. The Paris Peace Treaties serve the township of Bovec to Yugoslavia in September 1947. In 1991, when they break up with Yugoslavia, it became a part of self dependent Slovenia.

Bovec is in the mid of Upper Soca Valley. Today, Bovec is one of the famous tourist’s attractions especially for the people who want to relax from the hustle and bustle of the daily routine and likes adrenaline junkies like sports. After that a numerous other activities of sports and the beat of rhythm of city is maintained by the city locals. There is a different surprise hidden in Bovec in every season. During winters, Kanin-Canin ski centre is the main attraction. There is a playground around Bovec valley for all kinds of sports. A wide variety of games like biking, mountaineering, hiking are practiced in Bovec from spring to autumn. Also, activities like snow-shoe trips and sledding sport agencies around the region. Various golf games are played, a variety of horseback trips and a wide range of white-water sports are there to choose form.

The beauty of Bovec is maintained with the high mountains, valleys, breathe taking waterfalls and the emerald river bathe. The valleys are covered by the green sheet and fresh air. Visiting Bovec will make your holidays sporty and admirable.

A range of traditional festivals of Bovec are also famous among its tourists. Festival Kluze is an event of show casing art. Numerous concerts are organised, various dramas and plays for children and adults. It takes place in between July and August in Kluze Fortress and various other places around Bovec.

Bovec Folklore Evenings starts in July after the end of International Folklore Meeting in the late June. This is also called as Thursday Evening because a different concert is organised in each Forklore Evening for the performances of singing and dancing of the neighbourhood folklore group.

Comparska Noc which means “potato night” is a traditional and enjoyable event. It takes place on a day near August 15 suitable for locals. There is also a famous dish of the festival of potatoes with cheese cottage named ‘compe an skuta’.

Ekoloski spust po Soci, which means the Eco descent of the Soca River, the festival is organised in moderate climate between summers and winters in the Soca Rivers. Everyone is allowed to join the festival in cleaning the Soca River, and its surroundings. It generally takes place in the first weekends of October.

Bovec Outdoor Film Festival which is about nature and especially for sports. Festival of Snow Sculptures also takes place with the Film Festival, generally in December’s last week.