Daily Archives: 06.05.2014

Jacobs Well north of Wimberly, Texas



Jacobs Well north of Wimberly, Texas

Jacobs well inner view

This Jacob well is one of the dangerous places to dive in on earth but it attracts many people to come in and have a dive through it.This large black hole continues to welcome people who enjoy thrill in diving.The mouth of the spring is four meters wide and the depth is approximately 10 meters which is good enough for a large well.This is not completed yet.The spring then joins one of the largest underwater caves in Texas which is having a massive depth of 40 meters.This spring serves as a popular swimming spot for the local land owners whose the well belong to.

jacobs-well-natural-area

jacobs-well-natural-area

Location and approach:

This Jacob well is located to northwest of Cypress Creek of Wimberley,Texas.The well’s head is about four meters of diameter where thousands of gallons of water which goes through the well known Cypress Creek that flows through the Wimberley holding the Blanco River and the Blue Hole which flows through Edwards Aquifer and lastly completes the path through estuaries of Gulf of Mexico.

map of Jacobs well

map of Jacobs well

Discovery:

Jacobs Well is first discovered in the 19th century when some early settlers went on the way of Cypress Creek and viewed that it was flowing with cool,clear and abundant water.From then on,it has been developed as a swimming hole from generations ever and it also became a gathering place for early settlers and Native Americans.Also,the Jacobs Well is richly habitated with  some species of aquatic animals.

Amazing Jacobs-Well

Amazing Jacobs-Well

Many people have successfully explored the first and second chambers of the Jacob’s Well.This chamber is at a height of 30 feet with downward height of 55 feet.The water rested in this chamber is crystal clear and due to the sunlight through the water,the cave area is bright.It is also a home to algae and wildlife.The second channel is also explored by many explorers which seems like a long funnel of 80 feet which allows the opening to the third chamber.The second chamber seems like this is outside of the well.It is quite dangerous and may trap the divers.The third chamber in the cave seems like a small congested room with rock fragments.The divers who explore the third chamber should compulsorily inflate water wings so as to navigate this chamber without any risk like falling or sliding through those unstable rock fragments.

Jacobs well,texas

Jacobs well,texas

The fourth chamber’s passage is very narrow.Many few people who have been sent to that chamber predicted as it is a virgin cave with rich limestone formations with no rock formations.The bottom of the chamber is with fine slits which needs very careful experience to navigate.

Attractions:

Jacobs Well is a popular swimming spot and gains a rich income for those who own some properties besides the Cypress Creek.This Jacob’s Well cave goes down  for about thirty feet  with very narrow and dangerous restricted paths and reaching the depth of one hundred and twenty feet.The Jacob’s Well has really very dangerous underwater caves where some drivers have been killed while exploring the bottom part of the Jacob Well.It is considered as one of the largest underwater caves in the world.The Blue Hole is one of the nearest attraction popular for its swimming hole in Texas.It is one of the best in the world surrounded with Cypress Trees which is the master piece of calmness near the Wimberley.

jacobs-well

jacobs-well

Cypress Creek Nature Trail is another highlight which is nearly 7 acres of Central Texas bottom land beside the crystal creek which consists of rocks under small waterfalls through the Blanco River.This seems like a park which has fauna which is very unique in this area.The trial is really amazing  for wildlife and native birds.It is one of the preserving ecological balance spot which is a great stroll for stress buster.Mount Baldy which is known as Prayer Mountain is situated just outside the village is an attraction to tourists which consists of series of steps which leads to one of the stunning panoramic views of the Wimberley Valley.

inside jacobs-well

inside jacobs-well

The Jacob’s Well with the various tourist attractions nearby is surely the most exciting spot for people who opt for something special in their lives.This valley not only supports ecological life but also gives an stunning beauty of the nature with its exciting activities like swimming and this is really a best spot for explorers.

Jacobs well inner view

Jacobs well inner view

Jacob’s well Highlights:

This well is a really class and cool area,the water looks beautiful clear and the walk down to it is great fun.There are two ways to get to Jacob’s Well one of them is around to back side,near the rangers house.On this side you cannot get to the little near they have built going into the water but you get a much better view of the actually Well and not from here.The other side is a mostly liked by kids and it is a most friendly way to get into water.During spring season the weather around this well does not support for swimming,but it was a beautiful place to stare at it and enjoy the cool breezes over there.The well was much smaller than it appears in the pictures you were looking at.

Jacobs_well,Texas

Jacobs_well,Texas

Come and Stay in White Plains, New York



Come and Stay in White Plains, New York

New York is a place that never sleeps, never gets tired and never gets bored! It has the charm and beauty that a tourist desires whether its the Empire State Building with its amazing height and the Statue of Liberty with its design, history with some of awestruck moments or a place like home to a number of celebrities. These are some fabulous cities that together make New York a divine place to live, like Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, Binghamton, Albany, Brooklyn, Accord, Adams, Albertson, Alder Creek, White Plains and many more. Lets discuss in detail about White Plains, the county seat of Westchester County and one of the most populous cities of New York state. White Plains is located just north of New York City and 7 miles east of the Hudson River. The history of this unique city takes us back to 1683 when some people purchased 4435 acre of land from Weckquaeskeck Indians and this deal was named as White Plains. In 1776, the land was adopted as a part of New York and called the same name from the deal. The 18th century brought the economic boom and growth for the city when railroad reached here, businesses started to emerge and in 1866, White Plains got incorporated as a village. It became a city in 1916 and the county seat in mid 19s. Today, White Plains is a business hub with high technology firms, corporations, college, universities and a suitable place to live, work, shop and play.

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White Plains has a typical humid continental climate just like its neighbor cities with quite hot summers. There are no dry season and the temperature varies from 22 F to 84 F throughout the year. July is the warmest month with maximum temperature of 84 F and January is the coldest with minimum temperature of 21 F. Rainfall can be seen in May and is quite common over the year. The best time to visit White Plains is during spring season because of the less humidity.

How to get here?

20-white_-plains

White Plains does not have its own international airport but it is well served by Westchester County Airport, located just 3 miles northeast of the city. The airport receives carriers from all major airlines like Delta Airlines, US Airways, American United, JetBlue Airways, CapeAir and more. You can easily get to downtown from here by cabs, taxis, limos or airport shuttles. There is famous Bee Line Bus System in White Plains, by which you can easily get around the city and get easy access to important landmarks, restaurants and other places.

Accommodation and Food

accommodation

There are almost 40 lodging options in White Plains downtown, whether you need a luxury hotel with comfortable suites or affordable bed & breakfasts, everything is easily available here. One of the best is The Ritz Carlton, a five star hotel located right in the heart of the city, featuring 110 guest rooms with 84 suites, indoor pool and free internet. Other good options include Renaissance Westchester Hotel, Crowne Plaza White Plains, The Esplanade Hotel, Hyatt House, Residence Inn, Hotel Zero Degrees, Radisson Hotel, Hampton Inn, Dolce Palisades, Howard Johnson Express Inn, Doral Arrowwood, Stamford Plaza Hotel & Conference Centre, Ardsley Acres Hotel, Amsterdam Hotel, Hampton Inn & Suites Yonkers and Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites.

food

Chinese, Italian, Mexican, Indian, American, Mediterranean or Seafood, whatever your taste is, everything is available at more than 100 eateries around the city of White Plains. If you are in a mood of having some great Italian food then go nowhere further than Graziella’s Restaurant at S Broadway. You will surely love the cheesecakes at the Cheesecake Factory Restaurant, steaks & burgers at City Limits Diner, great Thai food at Reka’s Thai Restaurant and authentic Italian food at Antipasti. Other nice eateries include, P F Chang’s CHina Bistro, Seasons Japanese Bistro, Morton’s Steakhouse and Mulino’s of Westchester.

The Attractions

Kykuit

front-of-kykuit-mansion

The Kykuit is National Trust House located at Pocantico Hills in Tarrytown near White Plains. It is a big 40 room structure and also known as John D Rockefeller Estate. Kykuit is mainly known for its amazing architecture, gardens, arts and beautirul scenery. You can take a guided tour of the house and watch some eye catching sculptures designed by artists like Pablo Picasso, Henry Moore, Louse Nevelson and David Smith. Other attractions of Kykuit include underground art galleries, collection of Picasso tapestries, Coach Barn and a huge collection of classic automobiles and horse carriages. The house remains open daily for tours and admission fee depends on the type of tour you go for.

Gate of Heaven Cemetery

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The Gate of Heaven Cemetery is located at W Stevens Avenue just 15 miles north of White Plains and recognized as a Roman Catholic burial site. The cemetery was established in 1917 by the Trustees of St. Patrick’s Cathedral. The cemetery has more than 190000 Catholic families in graves, mausoleum crypts and cremation niches here and still it gives interment services till today. You can come and visit the cemetery for free but you will have to follow the strict directions written on the entrance wall.

Blue Hill Restaurant

blue hill

Blue Hill Restaurant is located just 30 miles from White Plains downtown and is a famous landmark for its great architecture, quality of food and other services. The restaurant was opened in 2000 by Dan, David and Laureen Barber. It was awarded as the Best New Restaurant by James Beard foundation and the president of US Barack Obama also dined here in 2009. You will feel like a celebrity here and will get a chance to taste some amazing dishes that you haven’t even heard about.

The City of Chandigarh



The City of Chandigarh

Chandigarh   open hand symbol

When you reach India and are greeted with the tallest glass of a soothing thick creamed ‘lassi’ (a sweetened buttermilk), then you surely are somewhere in the northern parts of India crammed up between the sweetest people of Punjab and Haryana. Lying amidst these two states, the capital of both, and a union territory, Chandigarh follows the same trend. Although supremely designed and well established as the spic and span city of India, the city has its roots affirmed when it comes to culture. Also, it has the capability of taking its visitors aback due to the amusingly rectilinear and disciplined residential areas, maintained gardens and the wide smooth roads without the typical Indian bumps and depressions; it just manages to confuse you enough so that you start asking yourself if you really are in India. Aptly named as ‘The City Beautiful’, this union territory has a highly organized and managed infrastructure. With the cleanliness and orderly development being the prime importance, the city of Chandigarh has grown through these years very sophisticatedly. Designed by the French architect, Le Corbusier, the city has seen the most well organized expansion after the completion of the plans as well. The open hand monument being the signature of this French architect, he has placed these statues in many places as a symbol of peace. He believed that the open hand symbolizes the exchange of ideas, where you are open to give and take freely. Placed at the foothills of the Sivalik mountain ranges, the climate of this place is rhythmic in pattern. Abrupt rains can surprise you at any time of the year and the mild winters and hot summers are equally unbalanced. The best time to visit the city is the autumn. With the flawlessly compatible atmosphere, serene sunlight and nice blue skies, you can enjoy all the aspects of the city and plan your trip properly. The home of some of the famous people like Kapil Dev, Abhinav Bindra, Milkha Singh and so many more, the place gives you precisely the similar striking experience, the way all these people made you feel when they did what they did.

The Rock Gardens

Rock gardens    Rock garden

Renowned for the magnificent artwork done by the founder of this place, Nek Chand, the gardens are visited by thousands of tourists every year. Founded in the year 1957, the artistic and elegant sculptures are truly alluring. Lying in the Sukhna gorge, the garden has captivated the interests of many people due to its unique feature of being entirely made out of waste; ranging from household waste material to industrial scrap. The efforts of this man were applauded then and are still reaping benefits due to the immense crowd it sees in the form of tourist. The garden has been planned beautifully and resembles a maze. So you need to be careful as it is easy to lose your way. Also, if you do not want to miss out on any of the exhibits, make sure you have full controls on what directions you walk in.

Sukhna Lake

Sukhna lake

The Sukhna Lake is actually a reservoir like structure as it was created by building a dam against the river Sukhna Choe. Scenically located at the foothills of the Sivalik ranges, it has a serene atmosphere created in its vicinity. People come here for the weekend picnics, small walks, or for simply relaxing after the long tiring day’s duty. The lake also has water rides for the entertainment of its visitors which includes boating, yachting, water skiing etc. Soaked in the magnificent peaceful weather and lush greens around you are bound to feel the sigh of relief inside you when you sit here watching the blue waters and listening to the sweet chirps of the birds during the evenings.

The International Doll Museum

International dolls museum

An immensely adorable place and the most alluring for kids, the Doll Museum has a collection of dolls from all over the world. With dolls of all sizes, shapes, colors and costumes the place had been started for the entertainment of the tiny tots. With the increase in the flocks visiting it, the collection saw an increase in its variety and number as well. Dolls from other countries like Germany, Denmark, Russia, Korea, Spain, Netherlands and many more find a place in the museum. You can also see the fairy tale characters in the form of their dolls being displayed in the gallery. It also has a toy train!

Gardens of Chandigarh

Garden of fragrance   Cactus garden

The Garden of Fragrance has been compiled astoundingly with the array of colorful and fragrant flowers arranged in a systematic manner. It has a variety of the most aromatic flowers and plants and sees many visitors enjoying the intoxicating breath of these delicate little darlings while they are jogging. The other garden in Chandigarh is the Cactus Garden. With all types of cactus put on display, the plants are well maintained and retained in a healthy manner. The different shapes and sizes of the cacti are really an amusing site. The Hibiscus garden is also another famous feature of Chandigarh. The variety of colors and forms of the flower of the same species will leave you spell bounded. The fact that a single flower can have so many different colors and different petals is really mind boggling.

With a hell loads of thing to do in the city, one cannot miss the experience of staying here, in Chandigarh. The city has loads on its platter, served in an organized yet compelling way. Oh, and absolutely do not fail to have the typical delicacies of the place which include the sarson da saag and makki di roti, butter chicken and a glass of lassi; because they are the most lip smacking varieties of the north Indian food that you will be served, and what better if its served in its original form!

Blue Caves – Zakynthos Islands, Greece



Blue Caves – Zakynthos Islands, Greece

Blue caves

The moment you dive in these blue waters, you start seeing yourself get transformed into a character of Avataar. Your skin is glistening blue while you swim through these waters and you cannot help but notice the magnificent shade of your skin. No kidding, even if you do not have the same long nose or the tail behind, your skin is the same blue in the waters of Cape Skinari. Located near mainland Greece, the northern tip of the Zakynthos islands gives you this enchanting and pleasant experience. The Zakynthos Island is the second largest in the cluster of islands in the Ionian Sea and is a famous tourist destination. The island is covered up with lush greenery and ample fauna which allures the travelers from world-wide. The west coast has the beautiful set up of these naturally made caves which were first found by Antonio Komouto in the year 1897. The graceful arches, the translucent sapphire water and the greens around is an absolute mind boggling combination of the nature. The water is amazingly clear and you can very easily catch a glimpse of the elegant sea creatures beneath the waters. The sun’s rays falling on these crystal waters makes the entire site a wondrous panorama. The rays of light make these waters magical which turn everything blue when inserted inside the waters. The marine flora and fauna hence are a treat to your eyes. The reflection truly makes you go crazy and you cannot help but test the phenomenon by putting your hand inside the waters at least twice.

The Blue Caves have been bestowed with immense grandeur and are hypnotic once you get there. Accessible only by sea, these caves fall under a rural civilization that resides in the vicinity. A calm place, never too buzzing, this area is blessed with the most extravagant combination of colors. Your eyes are in for a heavy treat here. They are also named as Blue caves of Volimes. The place is also famous for the flora and fauna that exists on the island. These caves are a must visit during your trip to Greece and should be listed on the top tasks to be done when in Greece. Definitely the mood builder and a true awe inspirer, this place has the ability to make you go speechless, just by the mere site of the entire view. You cannot stop soaking in the picturesque site and the fresh breeze encompassing you.

inside the Blue caves

The inside of the caves are equally spell binding. Although the caves are dark inside with no artificial lighting, the rays of the sunlight find a striking way of getting inside and light up most of the parts of the waters underneath your boat. The biggest cave of the array of these distinguished structures is known as Kianoun. The inside arches have been artistically carved due to the erosion that has continued over thousands of years and makes the atmosphere further interesting. The best time to visit these caves is during the sunrise or sunset hours when the light strikes in perfectly on the waters and reflects the rays to create a precise ambience for a unique experience. The boats are available from the nearby main lands and provide you with quite a flexible service. The smaller the boat, the more convenient to get to the insides and the better for your experience. The boats here are also available with transparent bottoms through which you can observe the fish and the aquatic plants waving in the waters and colored in different shades of blue. For the people who love getting inside the waters for a swim will have a great time in these cool waters. The divers will find a paradise in these waters and will assuredly have the time of their life. If you get hold of the right service, you get to enjoy these small dips in the turquoise waters and get refreshed. Surprisingly, even the people who are not the swimmer types, get too tempted to get inside these glistening waters. It is simply irresistible. So do pack an extra pair of clothing; because you never know what your heart wants and surely you do not, in any case, want to miss out on the most exhilarating things that you can accomplish here.

Loggerhead turtle

The other things to grab onto when you visit these waters is the endangered species of the Loggerhead sea turtle. Also known as Carret carret, it was on the verge of extinction because of the pollution that had started sinking in. The rate of survival of the newly born being really low, was another reason that contributed to the reduction in the number of these subtle creatures. The turtles come towards the south just to bury their eggs and is a favorite site for all the nature-lovers. A marvelous fleet of these shelled beauties is an all-together amusing view.

A complete distinct yet perplexing thing to experience, you want to give this place a shot at least once in your entire life time. The Blue caves really make it to the list of the most amusing and compelling scenes of the world.

Table Mountain, South Africa



Table Mountain, South Africa

table-mountain

The Majestic Table Mountain stands proud, overlooking the city of Cape Town, in South Africa and is also featured in the official flag as well as other local insignia. The mountain forms a part of the Table Mountain National Park which makes it a major tourist attraction.

The flat top of the mountain was the reason behind its name. The view from the top of Table Mountain has been described as one of the most epic views in Africa and so it forms a prominent landmark overlooking the city.

The most spectacular feature of the Table Mountain, is its level plataeu measuring approximately 3 km from side to side and is surrounded by impressive cliffs. This picturesque mountain accompanied with Devil’s Peak and Lion’s Head, on either sides, forms a dramatic backdrop to the city of Cape Town.

The Higest point on the Table Mountain is the eastern end of the plateau which is marked by Maclear’s Beacon, a stone cairn (a heap of stones) built for trigonometrical survey.  This point is 3,563 ft. above the sea level.

Local legend attributes the phemenon of the formation of the Orrographic clouds, on the flat top of the mountain called ‘Table Cloth’, as a smoking competetion between the Devil and a local pirate called Van Hunks. As soon as the table cloth comes into view, it symbolises the contest. The Table Mountain is at the northern end of a sandstone mountain range that forms the back bone of the Cape Peninsula.

Table Mountain Sandstone is found in abundance on the upper part of the mountain Mesa (an American English term for ‘table land’ and a Spanish & Portuguese word for ‘table’, is an elevated area of land with a flat top and sides that are usually cliffs). The Table Mountain Sandstone is highly resistent to errosion and forms characteristic steep ridges.

table-mountain-9 tm 3

The mountain is very rich and diverse as far as the biodiversity is concerened. But the vegetation is dominated by several endangered types of unique and rich Cape Shruberies and so the mountains’ vegetation type forms a part of the Cape Floral Region protected areas. These areas consist of about 2,200 species of plants and have been given the status of World Heritage Sites. The Table Mountain Range has the higest concentration of threatened species of any continental area of the same size as it in the world. Much of the indegenious forests have been felled and replaced with commercial plantations. The exposed slopes get rejuvenated due to the mountains’ seasonal natural wildfire cycles.

The mountain is inhabitted commonly by the Dassie, a small thickset herbivorous mammal, measuring between 30cm to 70cm, with a short tail. They are actually related to Elephants rather than rodents and are also called Rock Hyrax. Apart from Hyraxes, there are Porcupines, Mongooses, Snakes and Tortoises, that find a home on the Table Mountain.

dassie

Cableway- the Table Mountain cable is situated on the top of the mountain and is one of the most popular tourist attractions, attracting around 800,000 people using the cableway. The cable is used to take the tourists from lower cable station on Tafellberg road, which is about 302 m above the sea level to the plateau top of the mountain. The station located on top of the mountain offers a splendid view of the city of Cape Town, the Table Bay ( a bay on the Atlantic ocean, got its name because it is dominated by the flat topped Table Mountain) & Robben Islands (an oval shaped island on the  Table Bay) and the Atlantic Seaboard.

Table-Mountain-Cable-Car_34

The Adventures to indulge in..

Hiking tales of the Table Mountain- the Table Mountain offers various hiking trails of varying difficulty , which are enjoyed mostly by the locals and the tourists of course. Since the peak is surrounded by steep cliffs, direct assents from the city side are limited. Although Platteklip Gorge, a prominent gorge up the center of the main table, is a popular and straightforward direct ascent to the peak. The course takes between 1-3 hours to complete depending upon one’s fitness level. There are various other tracks and courses to reach the peak, which include the routes going via the Black Table ( a lower area of the Table Mountain), Skeleton Gorge, Bridle Path also called the Jeep Track, the Nursery Revine etc. The most popular ascent, is Kasteelsport which is situated on the Atlantic side, is a gorge overlooking the Camps Bay (a prosperous suburb of Cape Town), but the track most preferred by the walkers is the Pipe Track.

The four Table Mountain hiking trails by the names, People’s Trail, Table Mountain Trail, Orangekloof Hiking Trail and Top To Tip Trail, form the Hoerikwaggo trails. These trails range from two to six days and are successfully operated by South African National Parks.

Climbing rocks up the Mountain- rock climbing on the Table Mountain serves as a very popular pass time. One finds numerous well documented climbing routes that vary in the level of difficulty, up the many faces of the mountain. The main climbs are located on the cliffs below the cable station. Since no Bolting is allowed, one has to resort to traditional climbing only.

In the Caves- Table Mountain is an exception since it has several large cave systems that have developed in Sandstone, while most of the world’s important caves occure in Limestone. Among all the cave systems the Wynberg Caves are the biggest. These caves are loacted on the Black Table, near the Jeep Track, over looking the Orangekloof ( an area of the Table Mountain National Park, it is a conservation area which is highly restricted) and Hout Bay (a town situated near Cape Town).

Mountain Biking- the slopes of the Table Mountain offer a number  of jeep tracks which are utilised for mountain biking. the route to the Block House is a popularly used biking track. The mountain has a very steep jeep track by the name of Plum Pudding. To be on the right track and safe, bike riders should follow the directional signs on display for mountain bike riders.

The Mensa Constellation

Table Mountain is the only earthly feature to give its name to a constellation. Mensa (meaning table) constellation is seen below the Orion, around mid night in mid July. It was christened thus by a French astronomer during his stay at the Cape, in the mid 18th century.

If you are an adventure lover and are in search of thrill to quench your thirst for adventure, then the Table Mountain, South Africa,  is where your search shall find its destination. Do visit.

Reed Flute caves- China



Reed Flute caves- China

Crystal Palace in the Dragon King

The Reed Flute Cave,China

The Reed Flute Cave,China

Reed Flute Cave is a natural cave which is carved by karst limestone mountains over millions of years and is one of the famous attractions from the past 1200 years.This is a water eroded cave with its own natural specialties for which it is famous.

Map to the Reed Flute Cave

Map to the Reed Flute Cave

The Reed Flute Cave is located to the northwest which is five kilometers away of the downtown of Guilin.It is a spectacular cave where it is marked on almost all travel guides.This cave is on the southern side of the Guangming Hill,known as the Bright Hill and is one of the unique and best spot in Guilin. It is a 240 meter long cave with unusual and interesting rock formations and shapes.

The Palace of Natural Arts

The Palace of Natural Arts

This cave is known as the ‘Huge Art  Palace of the Nature’.There are at total 77 stone inscriptions written in ink which covers the history of it of Tang Dynasty.There is a saying that a visiting scholar once tried to write a poem about this cave which took so long that he turned into a stone.This cave has been almost forgotten for a thousand years and later in 1940 s,a group of refugees who are leaving the Japanese troops rediscovered and from then on,it is placed on mostly all travel guides. During the Second World War and Sino-Japanese Wars,local people used to hide in this cave.Also,this is considered as a safe place for hospitals,printing companies,newspapers refuge.

Stalagmites in Reed Flute Cave

Stalagmites in Reed Flute Cave

The Reed Flute Cave is formed 6,00,000 years ago by a cave river which is underground,according to the geologists.The rock formations,known as stalagmites are generally longer than the stalactites.This lake gradually turned into a cave due to the decrease in water level and increase in mountains which has calcium carbonate in the rocks deposited and was discovered by a local man and he used it as a secret place due to the wars.

Reed Flute Cave

Reed Flute Cave

The Reed Flute Cave got its name due to the reed formed at the mouth of the cave which could be made into flutes,according to the people’s sayings.The cave’s interior is like a magic land with several mineral deposits,stone pillars,birds,plants and animals in unusual shapes and colors.The cave is filled with lights due to the colors.

Artificial Lights of the cave

Artificial Lights of the cave

The Reed Flute Cave is opened to the public from 1962,which is famous for the name-’The Palace of Natural Art’.It now has artificial lighting system for the sake of visual effects.

Mushroom Hill

Mushroom Hill

Sky Scraper Twin

Sky Scraper Twin

Crystal Palace in the Dragon King

Crystal Palace in the Dragon King

Some of the unusual shapes are also given names like Mushroom Hill,Dragon Pagoda,Sky-Scraping Twin,Virgin Forests ,Flower and Fruit Mountain and so on.It is a Chinese tradition to give each formation a poetic name.These spectacular view is really amazing which brings more and more visitors both from locals and foreigners. There is a grotto which is a rock formation,named as the Crystal Palace of the Dragon King which holds up to 1000 people.This grotto was used as an air-raid shelter at the time of the war.The attraction of the cave is that it has a great white rock slab hanging like a waterfall with a human shaped rock formation ,known as stalactite on the other side.

Drip stone cave

Drip stone cave

There is a Drip Stone Cave which is 790 feet deep and the visitors need to walk 550 yards in the effective lights.As every formation has its own fairy tale story,it is a pleasure knowing both the stories with the visual effect lighting which brings out excitement in visitors.

Also,photography is allowed only if you are professional enough as there are visual effects .They use special equipment to provide illumination for the sake of taking pictures.The inscriptions which narrates the tales of ancient times are known as travelogues and the poems by the Tang Dynasty is the popular one in the Cave. Also, a park is built in the cave in a crisscross path with elegant structured buildings,ponds,bridges,garden structures and some plants.

Buffet in Reed Flute Cave

Buffet in Reed Flute Cave

Also,there is a buffet arranged in Reed Flute Cave where they arrange tables in an extra ordinary fashion which gives an elegant royalty.The cave offers several attractions which gives the visitors an unique model ,attracting millions of visitors every year.This is supposed to be the different and special cave in Guilin.

Reed Flute Cave is rated in the Top four tourist sites in Guilin City which nearly impresses every single visitor visiting this place.The cave clearly resembles that it is one of the Chinese scenery with beautiful stalactites,stalagmites  and many animated stories and inscriptions written.It takes one hour to explore the cave but even an hour seems short while the visitors were mesmerized to its beauty with bright colors of visual effects,music .It gives a different impression laid on it  compared to that of others.

Armenia- A page from History



Armenia- A page from History

Situated at the crossroads of Western Asia and Eastern Europe lies the picturesque country of Armenia. It is also known as the Republic of Armenia. With its cobbled streets and medieval charm, Armenia looks like a country taken out of the pages of a history book.  Armenia is a beautiful, charming county which is bound to take you back in time to a time of knights and kings.

The kingdom of Armenia was established in the 6th century BC after the fall of Uratu. Armenia is also known as the first Christian Nation as it was the first state in the world to adopt Christianity as its national religion. Armenia was under the rule of the Ottomans and Russian empires. Armenia became independent in 1918 after almost 600 years of struggle and war. The county is a member of the Council of Europe and the Collective Security Treaty Organization.

The land locked country of Armenia is surrounded by Georgia on its north, Turkey lies to its west, Iran lies to its south and Azerbaijan to its east. The national currency of Armenia is dram. The capital city of Armenia is Yerevan.

 

yerevan-armenia-1

The country of Armenia is seeped deep in history and culture. Armenia is widely known for its folk music, light pop and an extensive mix of Christian music. The dhol, the zurna, and the kanun are instruments commonly used. The Armenian chant is one of the oldest types of Armenian music which   is a common kind of religious music. Sayat Nova and Djivan Gasparyan are two of Armenia’s famous artists.

Wood carvings, antiques, fine lace, hand knotted woollen carpets kilims and other Caucasus specialities dot the markets of Armenia. Located near the Republic Square, the Yerevan Vernissage, is home to a variety of arts and crafts. Another speciality of Armenia is the Obsidian. The national Art Gallery situated in the capital city of Yerevan houses more than 16,000 pieces of artwork dating back to the medieval times. Among others the Modern Art Museum, The Children’s Picture gallery an

the Martiros Saryan Museum are worth a visit.

A visit to Armenia would be incomplete without a trip to Lake Sevan, the largest lake in Armenia. Lake Sevan is one of the world’s largest high altitude fresh water lakes. Lake Van and Lake Urmia along with Lake Sevan are collectively called the “Seas of Armenia”. Lying to the north west of Lake Sevan is the town of Sevan. In the summer months Sevan transforms into a beach resort. Beach volleyball, beach soccer, wind surfing are some of the popular sports on the beaches of Sevan. Another interesting thing to see while visiting Sevan is to visit the cyclopean fortress of Metsep which lies to the north of Sevan.

Geghard, Matennadaran, Khor Virap, Etchmaidzin Cathedral, Zvartnoots Cathedral, Mount Agerats, Hagthpat Monastery are a few of the many places one should visit when in Armenia.

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The Tatev Monastry sits atop a cliff and can be seen across the canyon and it is connected by a natural bridge to the other side. The bridge is commonly called Satan’s Bridge. People brave enough to climb down the cliff to the river would be welcomed to a world of stalagmites, stalactites, the river and other pool formations.

Khor Virap Monastry is situated at the foot of Mount Ararat. The monastery stands on top of a small hill with the breath taking, snow-capped mountain as its backdrop.

The Etchmiadzin Cathedral located in the town of Vagharshpat is a famous historical landmark. It is the mother church of the Armenian Apostolic church and is also the oldest cathedral in the world.  The cathedral has several beautiful frescos and painting adorning its walls. These frescos were restored in the 18th century.

For those who want to lay back and relax a trip to Dilijan is a must. It is the spa town of Armenia and is also home to the Dilijan National Park which hosts a wide variety of flora and fauna. The brown bear, wolf, otter, marten, lynx have all made this national park their home. Hagarishtan Monastery, Goshavanak Monastery, Jukhtak Vank monastery are among the several monasteries in Dilijan.  Lake Parz  in one of Dilijans most attractive natural sites.

Another popular health town in Armenia is Tsaghkadzor which is located to the north of the capital city of Yerevan.  The ski resort is located just north of the town. The town is nestled between the snow-capped mountain peaks.

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Armenian cuisine is guaranteed to tickle your taste buds. It is greatly influenced by Middle Eastern cuisines such as Turkish, Persian, and Arabic cuisine. Fresh herbs are an important ingredient of Armenian Cuisine. Harissa and Khash are the typical dishes of Armenia. The everyday dish of the people of Armenia is the dzhash which is a watery stew if meat, vegetables and spices. Dill, Tarragon, Oregano, Thyme and Basil are some of the herbs which are commonly used. Eetch and Jajukh are common Armenian salads. Byorek is another speciality of Armenia. Barbequing is very popular in Armenia. Khorovats and Gharsi  Khorovats are popular Armenian barbeque.

Armenian dress reflects their rich cultural heritage. Fur and wool was initially used but was later replaced by cotton. Silk was imported  from china.

Armenia is a beautiful country surely worth a visit.

Most Affordable Place to Live: Granada, Nicaragua



Most Affordable Place to Live: Granada, Nicaragua

It may be the oldest colonial city in Nicaragua but it is famous for the lowest cost of living in the whole country. However, it is not the only reason to stay in Granada but its beautiful setting, scenic beauty, historic places, museums, smiley people and amazing architecture also attracts huge numbers of visitors every year. Granada is the 4th largest city in Nicaragua and comfortably situated on the western shore of Nicaragua, just 50 km southeast of Managua. If you are in Nicaragua, then your visit will not be completed without seeing Granada because of so much to things to explore here. You can also have some outdoor fun here like boat tours, golf, tracking, kayaking, hiking and others. This city also has the most number of Spanish language schools in the state. Baseball is more famous here than football and much of the food is based on corn, cassava, beans and chili pepper. The history of this amazing city takes us to 1524 when the Spanish explorer Francisco Hernandez de Cordoba founded the city in 1524. Butchers, artists and warriors having knowledge of medicine and botany used to live here at that time and this was the time when Granada became one of the most important commercial harbors. The city was attacked by pirates, shattered by earthquakes, destroyed by floods, set on fire but the city fought back every time and succeeded in saving and conserving its historical treasure. In 20th century, Granada was considered as the most beautiful city in Nicaragua.

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Granada has a cold semi arid steppe climate with fairly hot summers. The temperature varies from 34 F to 95 F during the year and there are no dry seasons. July is the warmest month of the year and January is the coldest. You can expect rains during April and May and more than 300 sunny days throughout the year. The precipitation is highest in December and light rain can also be seen during these days. Best time to visit Granada is during March and April as the weather remains pleasant most of the time.

How to get here?

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Although Granada doesn’t have its own international airport but it is well served by Augusto Cesar Sandino International Airport in Managua which is located just 53 km from Granada city center. You can reach downtown from the airport by taxi which will cost you around $25 to $ 30. There is also the Mercado Huembes Bus Terminal in Managua where regular buses head to Granada every 15 minutes. You can use cabs, taxis, limos or local bus services to get around the city of Granada.

Accommodation and Food

Accommodation

There are more than 50 lodging options to choose from in Granada. From 4 & 5 star hotels and apartments to hostels and guesthouse, you will find every accommodation in all price ranges. One of the best places to stay in Granada downtown is Hotel Colonial featuring colonial mansion style, lovely rooms, private bathrooms, cable connection, free internet, free parking, spa center, health club, outdoor pool and restaurant. Other hotels with same facilities are Hotel La Bocana, Hotel Alhambra and Hotel Xalteva. In budget accommodations, there is Hostal Mochilas, Guesthouse Ari, Hostal Hamacas, Casa Del Agua, Hostal El Momento, GM Granada Hostel, Hostel Oasis, Los Corredores Del Castillo and Dolphin Guest House.

Food

There are hundreds of eating spots around the city, from restaurants to pubs & bars. American, Mediterranean, Thai, Chinese, Italian, Mexican or Indian, whatever your taste is you will find the restaurant fitting your criteria. You will love the special Asian cuisine of Tercer Ojo which also features the fusion of Tofu, Indian, Sushi and Thai food. Other good options are Comidas Tipcas Y Mas featuring great Central American food, Fritangas featuring barbeque and gallo pinto, El Ranchon featuring delicious fishes, El Zaguan featuring steakhouse, Kathy’s waffle, Cafetin El Volcan, EL Pizzaiol with great Italian food, Cafetin El Condor, Cafe de las Sonrisas, Cafe Don Simon, Don Luca’s and Cafe Blue.

The Attractions

Reserva Natural Volcan Mombacho

Reserva Natural Volcan Mombacho

Reserva Natural Volcan Mombacho is one of the most famous volcanoes on earth because of the mystical cloud forest around it, its location near the city and its amazing shape. The main attraction is the ride uphill because of steepness of the area, coffee plantations and hiking trails. You can get all the information about the volcano from the tourist center and get house maps, models, souvenirs and other material from there. There are four craters of Mombacho Volcano and all are covered by cloud forest. While climbing, you will be amazed to see white face monkeys, howlers, deers, reptiles and insects. The ride costs you just $ 17 for a group of maximum five people.

Catedral de Granada

Catedral de Granada

Granada Cathedral is located at Calle Gran Via de Colon in Granada and is the seat of the Archodiocese of Granada. It is a famous landmark of the city because of its amazing exterior and eye catching architecture. It is a large temple shaped building and main attraction is the Clock Tower which was built in 1681, covered by a slender cross of iron and the Two Bells, one used for the touch of the hours and the other of the rooms. There is also a museum on the ground floor of the tower which houses historic artifacts, painting, sculptures and jewelry.

Other attractions in Granada include Guadalupe Church, Mi Museo, Choco Museo, Nicaragua Spanish Lessons and Casa de Los Tres Mundos.

Plitvice Lakes National Park – Croatia



Plitvice Lakes National Park – Croatia

Plitvice lakes

In the continent of Europe, the mother earth has adorned a magnificent necklace of 16 interlinked lakes filled with pure turquoise waters. Lying in between the Mala Kapela Mountain and Plijesevica Mountain, these lakes are truly a spell binding site. All the lakes in this spectacular necklace are named after a legend or belief of the locals. In spite of their weird names, they are compelling and alluring and you simply cannot stop admiring the grandeur the nature has to offer. The interlinking waterfalls, the caves and the encompassing trees and bushes are a treat for your eyes. A typical example of the natural karst landscape formation, the travertine barriers continue to grow inch by inch every year increasing the beauty of these lakes. The entire expanse has been declared as UNESCO world heritage site in the year 1979 and is visited by numerous tourists. The satisfaction that you get here on the marvelous site of this place is a true value for your every penny that you spent in reaching the place. Divided into the upper and lower parts, the lakes show an array of variation in the ecosystems that thrive in them. The difference in the elevations and the composition of the waters result in this mesmerizing range of varied flora and fauna in the lakes. The upper part lies on the dolomite rock and has the waterfalls that interconnect the lakes with each other. These lakes see the natural building of travertine barriers formed by the biological action of moss and calcium deposition due to the aquatic life. The upper parts of the park is covered with dense forests and is lush green. The lower part is situated on the limestone rock and sees more of shallow and small lakes formed as a result of the caving in of the vaults above the subterranean cavities through which the waters manage to escape. This area, unlike the upper region, is covered in a sparse vegetation of bushes and grass.

brown bear     fish in Plitvice

The park was founded in 1949 and has been under strict protection for the preservation of the ecosystems and purity of the lake waters. One of the oldest parks in Europe and the largest in Croatia, this park should not be missed if you love residing in the peaceful atmospheres of lakes surrounded with forests. The most interesting part of visiting these lakes is that you get to evidence all the species of animals and plants which were present in the locality before the interference of the mankind on this area. Owing to the minimal development of industries and an early protection agenda, this place preserves every aspect in the similar way as it was from ages before. You barely get to see rare miracles of such kind in today’s world full of pollution. The lakes and its vicinity holds an array of different plant species. The forests are mostly crowded with the beech, spruce and fir trees making it a mixture of the Alpine and Mediterranean flora. There are more than 1000 species of different plants due to the variation and development of the climate, soil and water contents. The entire region has a colour burst during the various seasons throughout the year. On the similar lines of the forest, even the wildlife here has thrived healthily and is a precious site to be observed. The European brown bear is found in large numbers in these forests and are highly valued due to their decreasing numbers in Europe. The other important animals include the wolves, pond turtles, green lizard, dice snakes and many more to count. The humungous count of butterflies and birds is another story in its own. The wildlife is taken care of very dedicatedly so as to mean no harm to it and in true sense is free in the forests.

bridge in Plitvice

You can always have a camping experience in such places. Aptly suiting to your needs, there are various camping services offered to you in the nearby areas of the lakes. With the range of a complete wild camp with minimal facilities to a luxurious camping experience, they have arrangements for all of your requirements. The most famous camping site is the Slapic Camping site, run by a family and located about 55 km away from the Plitvice which gives you a quality service. If you are not the camping person, there are hotels inside the park where you can book rooms prior to your visit. Although a tough thing when you cannot swim in the glistening waters, you can enjoy the boating experience in these lakes. The best time to visit the lakes is April to October when the weather is soothingly cool and the lakes are available to enjoy. In the winters, the lakes usually freeze up due to the drastic fall in the temperatures.

Plitvice

The walks through the forest and the strolls on the bridge built precisely for the same reasons are the most exhilarating and breathtaking things you get to do here. The experience of being in an unsoiled area of nature is serene and wonderful. The visit to Plitvice Lakes National park paints an amusing picture of the perfect green forests and crystal clear waters with the animals living in harmony and a true scenario of a balanced ecosystem inside your head, which stays there forever.

Have a Great Time in Dusseldorf, Germany



Have a Great Time in Dusseldorf, Germany

It may be the boundary pushing architecture or sparkling nightlife or beautiful locations, there are thousands of reasons to love Dusseldorf, the capital of the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia. It is also one of the most populous cities also with more than 6 million people. It wouldn’t be improper to call Dusseldorf, the city of fashion, as it offers the latest designer fashion and high street trends by famous designers. It is also a famous shopping hub with a number of shopping malls and streets. It also has, Corneliusstrasse, the busiest city streets in Germany, Deutsche Bahn railway network covering the whole of Germany with 1000 trains, 400 advertising agencies including 3 largest in Germany, notable names in arts like Joseph Beuys, Gerhard Richter and Andreas Gursky, Grosste Kirmes am Rhein funfair which is attended by more than 4.5 million people every year, Altstadt town which is referred to as the longest bar in the world and a lot of souvenirs and landmarks around the city. The history of Dusseldorf gives a glimpse of 1288, when the city came to prominence. However, during World War II, the city was almost bombed to ashes but it was rebuilt from scratch after the war and turned into a modern and elegant piece of world. On 7th and 8th September, a festival is held as Dusseldorf’s 725th anniversary.

Dusseldorf-Germany

Dusseldorf has a mild humid temperate climate with fairly warm summers. The temperature hovers from 31 F to 77 F over the year and there are no dry seasons. The warmest month of the year is July and February is the coolest. There are more than 250 sunny days and you can expect rain at anytime. However, June goes mostly clear skied precipitation is highest during December. Thunderstorms are most likely during the period of precipitation. The best time to visit Dusseldorf is during February and April.

How to get here?

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Dusseldorf city is served by Dusseldorf International Airport which is the third largest and one of the busiest airport of Germany. It connects the city to more than 180 destinations all over the world and it is just a 10 minute drive away from city centre. There is also Sky Train which connects the Dusseldorf Flughafen railway station to the terminal. The airport also provides shuttles to get the visitors downtown or you can simply take a taxi, cab or limo from outside the airport. You can get around the city by the local bus and train service.

Accommodation and Food

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There are more than 194 hotels and apartments in the city and you can get them in all price ranges. Out of them, more than 60 hotels are right in the downtown which gives you easy access to nearby landmarks and historical buildings. One of the best places to stay is Novum Business Hotel Madison, located at Dusseldorf City Center, featuring free internet and a 24 hour front desk. Other good hotel options include Apartment in Pempelfort, NH dusseldorf City Nord, Holiday Inn Express at Dusseltal, Motel One Hauptbahnhof and Novum Hotel Plaza Dusseldorf Zentrum. In the cheap but good options there is Hotel Minerva Garni, Messezimmer Stockum, Hotel Wurms, Hotel Herzog, Hotel am Rathaus, Hotel Diana, Design Apart by Centro Comfort, Furstenwall Apartments, Moltke 120, Helvetia Suites, The Red Apartments, Appartementhaus Sonnen and My Home Partners dusseldorf.

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There is no meaning of a vacation without good food and drinks. Dusseldorf satisfies you to the core in this department as it has over 100 options for having good food with spectacular environment. Whether you like Sushi, American, Italian, Thai, Chinese, Indian or Mediterranean, everything is available here. You can have the best Italian food in town at La Donna Cannone featuring impressive Italian dining. You will be blown away by the Sushi served Fast Food Style of Maruyasu and Japanese fusion of Nagaya. You can dine, drink and dance away your tensions at Quartier Boheme and have a good lively local celebrity hangout at Riva. Other good options include Ufer 8, Space Burger, Uerige, Fuchschen, Zum Schlussel, Na Ni Wa, Brauerei Schumacher and Brauerei Schumacher.

The Attractions

Esprit Arena

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Esprit Arena is a football stadium located at Arena Stabe in Dusseldorf, holding a capacity of more than 54000 fans and a closable roof. The stadium was built in 2002 and was opened in 2004. The Esprit Arena holds sports games to music concerts and many other events. You can take a guided tour of the stadium and get a chance to get an insight into the area that are not normally freely accessible. The first match on this stadium was played on 10th September, 2004 between Fortuna Dusseldorf and Union Berlin. You can easily reach the stadium by all means of transport as it is just 7 km from the city’s main railway station.

Neandertal

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Neandertal, also known as Neander Valley, is valley of the tiver Dussel and located just 12 km east of Dusseldorf. The valley is named after Joachim Neander in 1856 and the main attractions of the valley are waterfalls, caves, displayed fossils, a museum and various multimedia exhibits. The valley remains open from Tuesday to Sunday and admission costs just 6.50 euros per person.

Museum Kunstapalast

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The Museum Kunstapalast is an art museum located at Ehernhof in Dusseldorf and features some great art objects, drawings, sculptures and a huge collection of graphic exhibits and photographs. It also has one of the Europe’s largest glass collections. The museum was opened in 2001 and was designed by Oswald Matthias. The museum remains open daily and you can take a guided tour at anytime.