Monday, December 29, 2008

Hi, I'm a frequent-flier addict


It's that time of year again for the 'mileage run.' The goal is 3,807 miles, and the destination doesn't matter. For this flier, it's about the upgrades, the bonuses and the rush. I have flown from Charlotte to Amsterdam and stayed just long enough to visit a coffee shop and see some Van Goghs before flying back across the Atlantic.

I have flown from Los Angeles to New York and wandered 5th Avenue and Central Park for an afternoon, admiring storefront holiday decorations, before returning to Kennedy for the flight home. I have flown from San Diego to Las Vegas and stayed 20 hours -- no hotel necessary -- before heading back to the airport yet again. Yes, it's time for the "mileage run." These mad dashes across the wintry skies at 35,000 feet are specifically designed to earn precious miles before the year-end deadline that can boost you from an ordinary coach passenger to, in the case of Delta Air Lines' program, vaunted Medallion status, where free upgrades and other benefits await.
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info on Medallion status

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Sunset at Sam

After covering all the areas in Jaisalmer we moved out to outskirts of Jaisalmer. Sam village is on the edge of the Desert National Park. One of the most popular excursions is to the sand dunes on the edge of the park, 42 km from Jaisalmer along a very good sealed road.

It is best to be here at sunrise or sunset, and many camel safaris spend a night at the dunes. Just before the sunset jeep carrying loads of day-trippers arrive from Jaisalmer to be chased across the sands by tenacious camel owners. Despite of the tourist hype, it is still quite a magical place, and it is possible to frame pictures of solitary camels against lonely dunes. The desert dung beetles are fascinating to watch.


From Jaisalmer we traveled to Jodhpur, blue city.

Distance: Jaisalmer ---> Jodhpur 285 kms

P.S: December is the month when lot of tourists land in Rajasthan. So if you really want all the arrangements to be done properly this has to be done before October end.

Jaisalmer, Golden City and more

After completing the tour of the Havelis we moved ahead to see other attractions that this city has to offer. The city has lot beautiful lake and cenotaphs that are a must watch.

Tazia Tower

The delicate pagoda like Tazia Tower rises from Badal Mahal (Cloud Palace). Rising in its five-tiered splendor, with each story graced by a delicately carved balcony, the tower is of historical significance. Muslim craftsmen built it in the shape of a Tazia and gifted to their royal patron. Tazia’s are ornately decorated bamboo, paper and tinsel replicas of a bier carried in procession during Mohurram.

Gadisar Lake

Gadisar is a man made reservoir in Jaisalmer built in the 1700s. This tank outside the city walls, once held the town's water supply, and, befitting its importance in providing precious water t
o the inhabitants of this arid city, is surrounded by small temples and shrines. A wide variety of waterfowl flock here in winter.

The tank was built by Maharaja Gadsi Singh, taking the advantage of a natural declivity that already retained some water.

The main gate that leads to the lake was unknowingly built by prostitutes, and so, noble people never pass under it, but rather use a rather humble step path to the right, under the tree.

Royal Cenotaphs

These monuments are located on Ramgarh Road 6kms from Jaisalmer. These cenotaphs also known as chattris and were constructed by the various Bhatti rulers. One cenotaph has been erected for each ruler. The oldest among them is the cenotaphs of Maharawal Jait Singh who reigned from 1470-1506. This tradition was discontinued when in 1947, one of the prince died of a mysterious disease. This was taken as a bad omen and thus this tradition came to its end.

We next move ahead to desert area to explore Sam Sand Dunes .



P.S: December is the month when lot of tourists land in Rajasthan. So if you really want all the arrangements to be done properly this has to be done before October end.

For more sky shots join us @ Sky Watch

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Mokpo korean old town best tourist attractions

Mokpo (Mokpo-si) ( 木浦市) is a major port city in South Jeolla Province , South Korea ,surrounded by hills facing the sea on the southwestern tip of the Korean Peninsula with a population of about 260,000. From Mokpo there are ferries to Tadohae Haesang National Park, Chin-do, Hong-do and Shinan island . The cheapest ferries to Chejo island also depart from Mokpo and the is now a ferry to Shanghai . Mokpo is the hometown of President Kim Dae-jung, who received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2001

Mokpo best tourist attractions and things to see in Mokpo including Park, Museum, Festival, Hall, and so many things here :

1. Yudal San park
A short climb gives a commanding view of the city with many pavalions . There are many scultures to be see here, If you wander off the main trails you can find old carving on the hilside . The building in front of the park is historical site #289, which used to be the Japanese consulate . There is a statue there of Yi-Sun-shin, who gazes at Nojok-bong hill. According to legend Yi-Sun-shin covered the hill with straw bags to imitate bags of rice to fool the invading Japanese army that he had more troops than there really were .
2. Yudal beach
3. Daebandong
4. Mokposisa
5. National Maritime Museum
Here you can see the remains of the yuan Dynasty junk ( which is quite large ) and the relics found with it, along with other items from Korean naval history
Take 111 Bus in front of Mokpo MBC, Hadang Geumho apartment, 25 minutes by taxi
6. Mokpo Natural History Museum
7. Mokpo Folklore Museum
8. Yongsan Dam and farming Museum
9. Regional Cultural Center Hyangto Munhwagwan
10. Namnong Memorial Hall
11. Mokpo Cultural Festival
Held every September or October since 1959, and it shows lives and spirits of Namdo people. During the festival, there are various kinds of events such as Play Festival, Music Festival, Jazz Concert

Yudal San Park
Yudal San Park in Mokpo


Mokpo Old Town
Mokpo Old Town view


Mokpo City View
Mokpo City


Mokpo Downtown
Downtown in Mokpo


Watch Mokpo Mugunghwa Hampyeong Station Start Up video here

Hefei gateway to the Huangshan Mountain best Bars and clubs

Hefei (合肥) is a prefecture-level city and the capital of Anhui province, China. Located in central Anhui. Hefei is a city with a history of more than 2000 years. It is the political, economic, cultural and financial center of Anhui Province. Hefei is the Hometown of Lord Bao and Northern Gateway to the Huangshan Mountain

There are a lot of tourist attraction places in Hefei, such as Leisure Ford (a public park sitting on the ancient site of the Battle of Hefei), Temple of Lord Bao, Hui Garden, and the Anhui LaoMingGuang stadium. The surrounding areas of Hefei abound with tourist resources. There are many tourist attractions known nation-wide within a radius of 300 kilometers of Hefei such as the Huangshan Mountain, Mt. Jiuhua, the Taiping Lake, Mt. Tianzhu, Mt. Tiantangzhai, the ancient town of Shouxian, the Imperial Mausoleum of the Ming Dynasty, Mt. Langya, etc. With mature regional tourist routes, Hefei is an ideal transfer station for tourists from north China who head for tourist attractions in East China.

Hefei nightlife is not really exposed in internet. But we still can enjoy the nightlife attractions like theater, bars, teahouses, clubs, disco, KTV in Hefei.

Hefei best Theater, Bars, Teahouses, Disco, KTV, Nightclub are listed here :

Hefei Theater :

1. Changjiang Theater, Add: #10 Jiushiqiao Rd, Tel: 2654520
2. Lu Opera Theater, Add: #537 Meiling Avenue, Tel: 2651853
3. Huachong Theater, Add: #589 East Changjiang Rd, Tel: 4483032
4. Changhuai Cinema, Add: #1109 East Changjiang Rd, Tel: 4293254
5. Guangming Cinema, Add: #445 Jinzhai Rd, Tel: 2823792
6. Huangmei Opera Theater, Add: #136 Tongcheng Rd, Tel: 2676856-801

Hefei Bars / Teahouses / Clubs :

1. MAX_CLUB,
Add: #203 Tongcheng Rd, Tel: 3550773

2. SOS Bar,
Add: #59 Ningguo Rd, Tel: 2902222

3. Baby Face
Add: Technology Plaza, #4 Garden Street, Tel: 2647198

4. Baidu Bar
Add: Wantong Plaza, #394 Meiling Avenue, Tel: 2199289

5. New World Café
Add: Central Garden #116 Yanhe Rd, Tel: 5525288

6. Dingding Holiday Café
Add: #1 Haozhou Rd, Tel: 5619333

7. Evergreen Tree Café
Add: #94 Lujiang Rd, Tel: 2619499

8. Langong Teahouse
Add: #1 South Ring Rd, Tel: 2827179 2828231

9. Dahongpao Teahouse
Add: #360 Meiling Avenue, Tel: 4653666

10. Yidouchicha Teahouse
Add: #133 Tongcheng Rd, Tel: 2628677

Hefei Nightlife
Hefei in nightlife view
Hefei City
Hefei city the capital of Anhui province

Thursday, December 18, 2008

New U.S. entry requirement

The United States will launch a new immigration system starting Jan. 12 to try to prevent terrorists entering the country. This will require foreign short-stay visitors from 34 countries participating in the Visa Waiver Program, including Japan, to apply for travel authorization at a Web site in advance of boarding a plane or vessel headed for the U.S.

You need to apply if you are an eligible citizen or national of a country participating in the Visa Waiver Program. Countries include Japan, the U.K., Ireland, Australia, Singapore, Portugal, France, Germany, Italy and Spain. Seven countries were added in November: Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, South Korea, Latvia, Lithuania and Slovakia. The list of participating states can be found on the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Web site at www.dhs.gov

How do you apply? Access the ESTA Web site run by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security at https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov
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Havelis of Jaisalmer

After going around the fort we set our eyes in other monuments of the city. The city is not only famous for the Golden Fort, but also the haveli's that are built by wealthy merchants of that time, Some of the prominent havelis are:

Patwon-ki-Haveli

This haveli was built between 1800 and 1860, by five Jain brothers who made their fortunes by trading jewelery and fine brocades.

Nathmalji-ki-Haveli

This late 19th century haveli was also used as a prime minister's house and has a superb exterior.

The designers exhibited unwavering tenacity and dexterity in executing the massive haveli.

That is my family
This is one of the favorite spot to click snaps.

Next we moved ahead to see other attractions of the city.



P.S: December is the month when lot of tourists land in Rajasthan. So if you really want all the arrangements to be done properly this has to be done before October end.

For more visit Thursday Challenge

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Puff Adder Facts


Latin Name: Bitis arietans

Length: Up to 1 m.

Lifespan: Average 13 years.

Distribution: Found throughout Africa except for desert regions and mountaintops.

Food: Rats, mice, other small mammals, birds, frogs, toads and other snakes.

Reproduction:
Puff Adders are viviparous (give birth to live young), giving birth to 16 – 40 young, which are born in the late summer. The young are highly venomous upon hatching and are capable of inflicting a serious bite.
The Puff Adder holds the record for giving birth to the most amount young by any snake, 156!

Venom:
Their venom is Cytotoxic and highly dangerous. Once the venom enters the body, the body sends plasma (white blood cells) to the site of the bite to try and dilute the venom. With the venom being so potent, excess amounts of plasma sent cause the body tissues to swell up to the degree where the veins are compressed tightly up against the skin, resulting in loss of blood circulation. The area that swells up will often turns to a blackish-blue color with there being a lack of blood.
If not treated promptly, often amputations may necessary after about 4 hours.

Notes:
The Puff Adder is responsible for most of the serious snakebite incidents in Africa as it is the most common widespread venomous snake on the continent and often does not move when approached resulting in many people being bitten.
It is a rather sluggish moving snake but can strike very rapidly. From a coiled position too striking and then returning back to a coiled position takes just 0,24 of a second!
When approached they will often hiss and puff, hence the name “Puff Adder”.

Monday, December 15, 2008

LA Times; Travel Section - special offers & deals

Special Offers & Deals from our preferred advertisers.
This is a good section to visit periodically to get the latest offers. - Bill
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New Years events in Las Vegas


On New Year's Eve, the Las Vegas Strip will once again be transformed into a giant block party. About 300,000 people are expected. Revelers, however, will need to be strategically positioned to see the aerial display. Instead of being shot from the rooftops of various resorts the fireworks will be launched from atop parking garages.

"These fireworks are going to be 300 feet closer to people on the Strip," says Pat Christenson, president of Las Vegas Events. The downside is that only people in certain locations on or near Las Vegas Boulevard will have a good view. Information on those sites will be available online (www.ap2009.com) beginning Tuesday. Beyond the fireworks, here's a sampling of ways to ring in 2009.
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Who’s to blame when there’s an unwanted charge for extra frequent flier miles?


I recently traveled round trip from LAX to Washington, D.C., on United. United told me I could print my boarding pass and pay the baggage fee online. I did that, but as I was making my selection, I had to opt out of several costly offers. When I returned from Washington, I asked the hotel concierge to print the boarding pass and pay the baggage fee. When I got home, I noticed that one of the pages the concierge printed was an acceptance of a $137 charge for United’s Award Accelerator, which increases the value of flier miles. I called United’s customer service reps, but they refused to cancel the charge. Can I get my $137 back?

Answer: Yes, but not because there are clear-cut good guys and bad guys here. As is often the case when airlines were involved, I thought at first this was merely a question of customer service, which I continue to insist is a misnomer when airlines are involved. But the more I talked with Smith, United and Tim Winship, travel editor at large for SmarterTravel.com, the less clear it became. Smith erred by not telling the concierge to be careful. She had successfully evaded the charge when she printed out her own boarding pass on the first leg of her trip. The concierge erred by accidentally obligating her to buy the extra miles.
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Thursday, December 11, 2008

Jaisalmer, the Golden City

Next day we left Bikaner in the early morning and reached our next destination Jaisalmer in the evening. We stayed 2 nights in this place as there are lot of places to be seen.

There is interesting legend associated with Jaisalmer city. It is believed that, Lord Krishna, had once told Arjuna that a remote descendant of the Yadav Clan would build his kingdom atop the Trikuta Hi
ll. In 1156 A.D. Rawal Jaisal, a descendant of the Yadav Clan and a Bhatti Rajput, abandoned his fort at Lodurva and founded a new capital - Jaisalmer, perched on the Trikuta Hill.

It is also known as the Golden city of India as the yellow sand gives a yellowish-golden touch to the city & its surrounding area.

Golden Fort

Built in 1156 by the Bahtti Rajput ruler Jaisala, and reinforced by later rulers, the fort crowns the 80 m - high Trikuta Hill. This is one of the oldest living fort, where one quarter of the old city's population is still residing in it. The fort has 99 bastions around its circumference and is protected by three walls.

The fort looks especially magical when it is lit up at night.

The above snap is taken using film SLR Canon camera without the assistance of tripod. Out of the 4 shots, two of them were successful.

Apart from the massive fort the city has many more attractions which are not to be missed.


P.S: December is the month when lot of tourists land in Rajasthan. So if you really want all the arrangements to be done properly this has to be done before October end.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Jeju Island best bars pubs casinos beach

Jeju Island (제주도) formerly Cheju Island, is an island off the southern coast of South Korea.Jeju Island, also known as the "Island of the Gods," is a popular vacation spot for Koreans and many Japanese. Scenic beaches, waterfalls, cliffs and caves lie in harmony, and the mild weather makes Jeju island an even more ideal tourist destination.

Although tourism is one of the main industries on the island, many of the hotels and other tourist areas are run by mainland companies, so much of the income never gets put back into the local economy. Also, since the attractions are geared towards tourists, many of the entrance fees can be hefty (although the locally owned and operated ones tend to be cheaper). Similar to Gyeongju and some other areas, local residents can enter most places for free or for a steeply discounted price.

Jeju has so many nightlife attractions. Bars,Pubs, and casino can be found easily in the city especially located in the "old city" near city hall. This is where the young college kids and Jeju-do's English teachers hang out.

Nightlife in Jeju, South Korea is abound with many options namely Bars&pubs in Jeju, Casinos in Jeju and nightclubs in Jeju. One of the high points of nightlife in Jeju is the wide array of bars&pubs in Jeju. Most of the bars and pubs here are operated by the luxurious super deluxe hotels and resorts in Jeju.

In Seogwipo, the nightlife is centered around the luxury hotels and resorts. The Jungmun Tourist Complex has a bunch of upscale hotel lounges and karaoke bars. Also, many major hotels have casinos.
Jeju Island
Jeju Island has a beautiful beaches

Jeju City
Street in Jeju City

Watch Travel in Jeju Island Korea, Travel Hawaii in Korea (1박2일도 제주도의 아름다움에 놀라다) video here

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Nandi Teertha Temple, Bangalore

Malleswaram, located in the north-west of Bangalore, derives its name from the famous Kaadu Malleshwara temple originally, a village named Mallapura.

Malleswaram is one of the areas in Bangalore where you can find many Hindu Temples. It has old Hindu constructed using the Dravidian architecture which were built during King Venkojirao Bhonsle of Thanjavur's (17th century B.C.) like the Kadu Malleshwara temple. Other famous temples in the area are Lakshmi Narasimha Temple, Sri Krishna temple, Circle Maramma Temple, Kannika Parameshwari Temple.

The 17th cross, 2nd main road, Temple Street is adorned by various temples. One among them is Nandi Teertha Temple. Here one can see water fall onto an idol of Shiva through the mouth of Nandi. This was discovered in the year 1999, but it has stood for 7,000 years on that spot. Being buried over the years hasn't diminished its aura at all. The temple was completely buried and the land above it was a flat stretch. When the land was dug, they found buried underneath, this temple and it was in perfect condition, preserved by the thick layers of soil. This underground temple was enclosed within a stone cut courtyard supported by ancient stone pillars. At the far end of the courtyard, a Nandi was carved out of a black stone with eyes painted in gold. From its mouth a clear stream of water flowed directly on to a Shivalinga made out of the same black stone at a lower level. There were steps that led to a small pool in the center of the courtyard where the water flowed and collected. The pool's center had a 15 feet deep whirlpool.



Nobody knows where the water comes from and how it passes from the mouth of the Nandi idol on to the Shivalinga. Nobody knows how the whirlpool came into being, the source of water, the sculptor, even the time when it was built remains a mystery.

Andong Korea city of Hahoe Masks

Andong is a city in Gyeongsangbuk-do Province, South Korea. It is a two-and-a-half-hour drive from Seoul. It is the largest city in the northern part of the province with a population of almost 185,000.

Andong is famous for its “Hahoe” masks and a picturesque folk village surrounded by a river, a mountain and a breathtaking pine tree forest. It also has a high concentration of people with the family name Ryu.

Andong has so many beautiful sites and places to attract the visitors. Don't forget to visit such famous sites like this :

1. The Korea National Tourism Office has a small Tourist Information Center at the Andong train station. It is staffed by volunteers and the level of English proficiency tends to be low, but they have several good guides to the area in English and Japanese, as well as Korean. Stop by and pick up one of their area maps.
2. Andong Dam- Built in 1976, the multi-purpose dam provides hydro-electric power and recreational areas for the surrounding areas.
3. Andong Folk Museum- Built to preserve the cultural assets endangered by the creation of Andong Dam, the museum contains over 3,700 items representing the Confucian culture of the Andong region.
4. Andong Folk Village- The village contains the Andong Folk Museum, as well as many reconstructed and relocated traditional buildings, many of which also function as restaurants.
5. Andong Market- Andong actually has numerous markets, as it functions as the central trading area for the surrounding areas. The locally produced cloth is especially famous.
6. Chebiwan Seokbul (Amitaba Buddha)- A 12+ meter high stone Buddha, with the body and head carved separately from different pieces of granite.
7. Hahoe Folk Village- The 600+ year old village is truly a living museum as the inhabitants have maintained the traditional way of life through the generations.
8. Hahoe Mask Museum- The museum contains over 200 Korean masks and 100 foreign masks, concentrating on the Hahoe Pyolshingut T'alnori, the famous mixture of entertainment and shamanistic ritual for which the Hahoe area is famous.
9. Pongjong-sa Temple- Dating from 672, this beautiful temple contains many cultural properties, including Keungnakcheon, Korea's oldest wooden building.
10. Shinsae-dong 7-story Pagoda- Built during the Shilla Dynasty, this 17 meter high pagoda is Korea's tallest and oldest brick pagoda.
11. Tosanseowon (Confucian Academy)- Established in 1574, it was the center of Confucian studies in the surrounding region for over 400 years, and is designated Historical Site.
12. Yonggye-ri Ginko Tree- Over 37 meters in height and 16 meters in width, this is one of Korea's oldest and largest trees, and it is reputed to "moan" whenever Korea is about to suffer misfortune.


Hahoe village of Andong


The Andong International Mask Dance Festival


Watch Andong city, Hahoe Folk Village Mask Dance video here

Lanzhou China Opera and Dance Drama Theater City

Lanzhou (兰州) is a prefecture-level city and capital of Gansu province in northwestern China. It is located on the shores of the Yellow River and was a major stop on the Silk Road.

Lanzhou is one of the better places, outside of Beijing, to view traditional Chinese opera. The opera performed around the city includes the most famous Beijing Opera (Jing ju), Sha'anxi Opera (Qin ju), Henan Opera (Yu ju), and the local Gansu Opera (Long ju). The city is famed for its many teahouses, especially on Jiefang lu and Zhongshan nanlu, where local cadres and amateur retired workers will occasionally give performances of opera.

The Lanzhou Opera and Dance Drama Theater, founded in April 1970, was originally the Lanzhou Song and Dance Troupe.

Some of Lanzhou famous opera Theaters & Concerts are listed here :

The Grand Provincial Hall
Tel: 8822694/ 8823501
Description: The biggest musical or opera house in the city.
Hours: 10:00-22:00

Lanzhou Theater
Tel: 8464057
Description: Weekly cinema or opera are shown here.
Hours: 11:00-23:00

Bars & Clubs & Teahouses
Fulihua Disco Club
Add: West Minzhu Rd.
Tel: 8836638
Hours: 18:00-02:00

Lanshan Amusement City
Add: Ganl;an Rd.
Tel: 8465529
Hours: 12:00-00:00

Lanzhou yuanyang Dancing Hall
Add: Yongchang Rd.
Tel: 8488435
Hours: 18:00-23:00

Lianguang Nightclub
Add: Honggongmao Mansion
Tel: 8836735
Hours: 18:00-02:00

Others

Lanzhou Sports Stadium
Add: Gaolan Rd.
Tel: 8824811
Description: Lots of sports activities
Huanghe Cinema
Add: Gaolan Rd.
Tel: 8416317
Hours: 11:00-22:00

Feitian Cinema
Add: East Donggang Rd.
Tel: 8498749
Hours: 11:00-22:00

Lanzhou Opera
Lanzhou Opera and Dance Drama Theater
Lanzhou city
The Yellow River seen from the park of the White Pagoda.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Travel360Network member

I just learned about the WineSkin bag (http://www.ftscontent.com/index.html), which I'm going to order and try on my next trip for bringing home wine. In the past, I've brought bubble wrap, neoprene bags such as the ones by Built, NY, and cylindrical cardboard bottle holders. I've brought home many bottles of wine and olive oil, and I've yet to break one! I think these WineSkins look really cool, though. If anyone has experience with these, please let me know!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

CHALLENGE OF THE ROUGH ROAD AROUND THE 'GEOGRAPHICAL CENTER OF THE PHILIPPINES'



The area where the Luzon Datum of 1911 lies is attracting visitors who probably hardly know the significance of that area near Balacan & Argao. Soon, an eco-tourism park will be developed there in cooperation with the barangay residents. Recent visitor is a group of motorcycle riders from Boac, photo sent in by Douglas Green (click this high resolution photo to enlarge).

From: "Doug Green"
To:
Sent: Friday, November 21, 2008 6:39 AM
Subject: A picture for you to consider


Last Sunday the BOAC Old ? motorcycle club made an excursion to Argao to enjoy the challenge of the rough road from Balanacan to Argao and other fishing communities. As you can see they got through.
--
Douglas Green BRITISH COMMERCIAL CONSULTANT
Philippines

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

I recommend that you visit www.elisatoffoli.com to listen some great music by a darling and very talented Italian artist - she is a superstar in Italy! Elisa came to Salt Lake City recently on her first American & Canadian tour, and I went to the club to see her perform. She was awesome! I've just received one of her CD/DVD sets from ibs.it. Now all I need is to get my portable region-free, zone-free DVD player so I can watch the DVD (it won't play on a regular U.S. DVD player).

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Escape by ferry on a day trip to Itsukushima


A tour boat passes through the floating torii gate at Itsukushima Shrine.


The Daishoin Temple is one of the architectural treasures of Itsukushima.
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Sunday, November 23, 2008

Most Dangerous Snake in Africa

What is the most dangerous snake in Africa?

There is no 100% correct answer. Some people say it’s the Black Mamba. In world rankings it rates at No. 42 for the world’s most dangerous snakes. It is a fast striking and moving snake, reaching a top speed of 20km/h. It won’t hesitate to bite and the venom (neurotoxic) is capable of killing a person within 1 hour. If you are allergic to bees, the bite from a Black Mamba can kill you in as short a time as 20 minutes! There are very few incidents of Black Mamba bites throughout Africa every year.

The Puff Adder is also said to be the most dangerous snake in Africa. The reason is they are found throughout Africa and are responsible for the most lethal snakebites every year. Most snakes will move away out of sight if you walk to close to them.
The Puff Adder normally doesn’t move and is often stood on, often resulting in a bite.

The Boom Slang is said to be the most dangerous snake as well. The venom of a Boom Slang is haemotoxic. The venom affects the body’s natural blood clotting mechanism resulting in the bleeding of the internal organs. Sometimes it can take as long as 12 hours before the symptoms of the venom can be felt or seen.
The Boom Slang is a back fanged snake, (fangs at the back of the jaws) which is very misleading, as many people believe that it can only bite you on the hands or feet. This snake is capable of opening its mouth to an angle of 170, so it can grab hold of you just about anywhere.
Fortunately the Boom Slang is quite a placid snake and one would really have to irritate or hurt it to make it bite.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

WHO WAS LONGHINO?


(Early icon of St. Longinus)

Longhino is the central figure in the Moriones Festival celebrated in Marinduque during Lent for over a hundred years now. He was the centurion at the foot of the Cross who proclaimed "Truly this was the Son of God" (Mt. 27:54).

The Longhino story (or Longinus or St. Longinus)has captured the imagination of the Marinduquenos, which goes on record as the original Philippine locale that first made use of masks and colorful garbs on account of folk tradition and cultural history. Tradition says that Longhino was also the centurion who pierced Jesus's side with a spear, and that he was one of those who kept watch over Christ's tomb. He had been bribed to say that the body of Jesus had been stolen, but having come to believe in Jesus, he refused to.

Further research on the life of St. Longinus revealed that he was baptized by the Apostles, and went to preach the Gospel to the Cappadocians. His efforts were so successful that the Jewish authorities persuaded Pilate to have him killed. When the soldiers arrived, they were taken in by him and treated very well. They did not know that he was the man they had been sent to kill, and when they found out they did not want to follow their orders. St. Longinus, who was willing to accept martyrdom told them to carry out the orders they had been given. And so St. Longinus was beheaded.

The Longhino story is set to be presented in Boac on Black Saturday as the final stage presentation covering biblical accounts and the life of Christ (Holy Wednesday and Maundy Thusday evening, and on the streets of Boac with "Via Crucis" on Good Friday afternoon).

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

HINULUGAN FALLS, TORRIJOS



PA Allan Velasco enjoying Hinulugan Falls (erroneously identified here earlier as Sibuyao Falls). Prof Ir. PM Labay who is from the area describes it as between Brgy. Sabong and Sitio Kitay. He says it has a cave at the side of the raven where water also enters. (I wonder if the tourism group knew that). There are two more falls in the area, Magdumog-dumog Falls and Batingaw Falls in Tumagabok which is also known as Busay. "Busay" is the local term for "falls", thus other falls elsewhere in Marinduque are also called by that name.

GREEN TOURISM FOR MARINDUQUE


(In support of Carrion's Marinduque Green Tourism concept Administrator Lord Allan Velasco has identified prriority projects for community-based tourism development, among them the Sibuyao area in Torrijos. Above photo shows Velasco at Sibuyao falls.)

In a meeting held recently in Sta. Cruz town, with the reactivated and re-organized MARINDUQUE CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY, Governor Jose Antonio N. Carrion thanked the organization headed by businessman Elmer Tan, for having taken "a big and bold step to advance the interests of Marinduque business, trade and investments". The organization stressed its resolve to prioritize partnership with government in the meeting, called the 1st Marinduque Business Summit.

Carrion stated that the provincial government continues to create an environment conducive to private business growth, which he said has been his overall economic policy. Among the points he stressed were the efforts undertaken by his administration to address the energy and transportation concerns of the province, citing actions to address power outages that have been experienced and have apparently been resolved. He also cited the re-opening of the Cawit Port and the Marinduque airport to boost local tourism.

In his speech, Governor Carrion stressed the concept of bringing together the elements of ecology, cultural, agri-tourism and even sports or adventure travel as that now being pursued in Marinduque. He said that a coherent output of the Southern Tagalog Tourism Council Assembly held here in July is Green Tourism for Marinduque.

There appeared to be many labels that have been used to refer to this concept but the definition remains the same: low impact, environmentally-friendly tourism that cherishes, not destroys. For Marinduque, Green Tourism offers leisure and learning activities where visitors enjoy nature, culture and inter-change with local people in an agricultural, mountain or fishing village setting. The concept encourages enjoyment, environmental education, engagement in hands-on experiences, immersion into local culture and lifestyle, and conservation.

Carrion said that as a market strategy, Green Tourism which is most ideal for Marinduque's island setting makes eminent sense for the long term. He says it taps into what is a growing demand for holidays and that concern for the environment and global warming grows daily, thus the Green environmentally-aware tourist can only increase in number.

In line with this Carrion is set to issue an Executive Order declaring Green Tourism as the provincial OTOP (One Town One Product)of Marinduque. OTOP is a DTI development strategy to encourage trade and investments in a particular local government unit.

ENCOURAGING DOMESTIC AND FOREIGN CAPITAL

Carrion also said that the entry of domestic and foreign capital to establish enterprises that would utilize local labor and raw materials available in the province are welcome and fully encouraged. Consequently, the promotion and enhancement of strong private sector collaboration would be indispensable.

For his part Carrion devulged the existence of a Provincial Ordinance that established the Marinduque Development and Investment Code. Approved in 2001, by the Office of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan, he said the Ordinance was aimed “to generate investment in the province to stimulate economic activities that would contribute to its full development”. Carrion, however said that the ordinance "apparently slept in the floorboards and was never implemented for whatever reason". His administration now supports its full implementatin, he said.

The said Ordinance provides tax exemptions, fiscal and non-fiscal incentives to enterprises that would engage in preferred areas of development and investment which includes, among others, investment in the development of agricultural resources aimed to improve agricultural technology and productivity, and investment in the development of tourism as major industries of the province, investment in property development, transportation and communication facilities, efficient and affordable power supply generation and distribution; water supply system and sewerage system and investment in export oriented business activities.

Carrion quoted the Resolution approving the said 2001 Ordinance begins which reads thus: "For so many years Marinduque has not gained substantial economic growth and this can be attributed to the lack of proper programming and of a clearly declared vision and a defined mission”. He cited that the government of Marinduque has a clearly declared vision and a defined mission now. "Government and private sector engagement to propel growth in Marinduque will be strengthened as we have paved the way and continue to create the setting conducive to this partnership", he said.

YOOK FINDS HOPE

YOOK FINDS HOPE

NORWEGIAN AMBASSADOR VISITS MARINDUQUE


There are large numbers of organizations, projects and programs that attempt through action to uplift the living standards of poor communities. Barangay Yook in Buenavista, is one of the many communities in Marinduque faced with several tough challenges. Many spirited organizations have provided support to the barangay through various programs during the last decade. Yet, the programs adopted were apparently unsustainable. The same challenges have remained and there’s so much gnashing of teeth afterwards, even up to the present, at the complexity of the situation.

Recently, Ambassador Stale Torstein Risa, the first Norwegian Ambassador to set foot on Marinduque soil, had a look at Yook. Yook is one of the most picturesque barangays south of Marinduque but also one of the most deprived. Risa was to lend moral support to the challenges taken up by the Norwegian Mission Alliance (NMA), the Mission that refuses to accept that Yook is devoid of hope.

The Norwegian Mission Alliance, is a ‘diaconal’ mission, a role in the Christian Church generally associated with service to others to pursue a vision. NMA took notice of Yook a year ago in an effort to identify barangays in Marinduque, the province listed as the poorest in the MIMAROPA region.

Consultations with the municipal and provincial government, national and local social welfare offices and barangay officials were immediately undertaken. By July the NMA was ready to initiate a strategic plan focused but not limited to the development of children and youth of this pilot community.

The NMA approach is unique for it involved the creation of a Participatory Action Research (PAR) Team composed of community members who have the potential to facilitate interventions for the community. Selected from a cross-section of farmers, fisherfolks, women and youth, the team received training from the NMA’s program development team after which their thorough research began which lasted for four months (October 2007 to February 2008).

House to house visits, focus group discussions with all sectors of the community which, through active sharing that elicited much information were conducted. The ins and outs of their community life were examined, problems identified and solutions were recommended by the people themselves. Rain or shine the PAR Team worked hard, armed only with the strong determination to make a change in their community. They worked hard, and the wise were appalled and could hardly believe it when they found out – the team took their tasks voluntarily and without financial remuneration.

Community validation of the research work conducted by the PAR Team was undertaken, after which, collation of the research and its revalidation that included the primary issues and concerns affecting the various sectors in the community were identified.

Some of the issues identified were the lack of livelihood opportunities, non-ownership of their sources of income (land (80% are privately owned, 10% government-owned and only 10% are owned by residents), crops, livestock, banca), depleted soil and marine catch.

Environmental concerns raised were the lack of toilets (70% of households are without toilets), poor waste management, depleted forest, and use of wrong methods in fishing. Issues on children include malnutrition (5-10 cases per sitio), and diseases (including tuberculosis), physical and emotional abuse, dropping out of school for lack of money, (The CBMS Report of 2004-2005 revealed that only 58% or 531(from a total of 903 children aged 6-16 go to school), and lack of playground.

Youth issues included lack of opportunities for out-of-school youths, and lack of spiritual development and discipline among others. Women issues spelled out were: lack of income sources, did not finish schooling, physical abuse and separation from the family and children (some mothers work as domestic help in Boac, Quezon, Batangas and Manila ).

Yook Profile

Yook is located in the southern part of the province of Marinduque , one of 15 barangays in the municipality of Buenavista . It is 7.5 kilometers away from Buenavista and 38.5 kilometers from Boac.

Yook has a population of 3,600 (in 2005). 50.9% are males and 49.1% are females. There are 600 households with an average of 6-7 members per family. It has eight sitios (Banabang Munti, Estancia, Madre Cacaowan, Gala-Gala, Banabang Malaki, Balikot, Yook Proper and Binunga), with Binunga as the most populated with 230 households.

432 (70.6%) out of 612 children aged 6-12 are studying in elementary schools, while only 34% of 291 children aged 13-16 are studying in high school.

The main economic activities in Yook are farming (39%), livestock raising (33%) and fishing (28%). In agriculture 44% are engaged in copra-making, corn production (30%), banana (5%), cassava (5%), vines (5%), vegetable (5%), monggo (5%), and rice (1%).

Six community organizations are active in the barangay. These include the Parents-Teachers Community Association (PTCA), Small Coconut Farmers Organization, Marinduque Council for Environmental Concerns (MACEC), Samahan ng mga Kabataan, CARD members and Barangay Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Council (BFARMC). There are no linkages with one another among these organizations with the exception of the heads of the PTCA, Barangay Council, Barangay Nutrition Scholars and Barangay Health Workers who coordinate their work-related tasks.

Cognizant of the fact that the Norwegian Missionary Alliance could not alone take the initiative in developing a child and youth friendly community, the need to partner with other organizations with similar concerns to sustain programs in health, education livelihood, water-supply, emergency shelter, spiritual development and the like, is a continuing program.

Ericson Lazarte, Area Manager of the NMA Marinduque Cluster, stressed the hope that cooperation in these various aspects with the Social Welfare and Development Offices, Early Childhood Care and Development (ECCD), Provincial Health Office (PHO), Department of Trade (DTI), Technology, Eduation & Science Development (TESDA), Department of Education (DepEd). Provincial Planning & Development Office (PPDO), Marinduque State College (MSC), the municipal government of Buenavista, the provincial government, as well as the various church organizations and community organizations in Yook would be strengthened.

The integration of existing projects to new ones where NMA support is needed and the implementation of programs resulting from the rich and lively focus group discussions will be next undertaken.

Lending support to the program is no less than Ambassador Stale Torstein Risa of the Royal Norwegian Embassy who was accompanied by NMA Director Petter Buer and other Norwegian representatives from the Norwegian Missionary Alliance in Oslo .

In his remarks during the presentation of the PAR research to partners, the Ambassador stressed “the importance in this type of work where the collaboration aspect is so stressed, after the practical things have been done”. Risa added that he has no doubt that seeing the beauty of the island of Marinduque and noting the challenges faced by its friendly people and their positive attitude, that Marinduque “will have a good future”.

Aside from visiting Yook the Norwegian Ambassador also paid a courtesy visit to Buenavista Mayor Ofelia S. Madrigal and proceeded to Binunga Elementary School and barangays Bagacay and Bagtingon where similar PAR activities are being undertaken.

Risa’s visit was capped with a dinner hosted by Governor Jose Antonio N. Carrion at the latter’s residence where the ambassador’s party was treated to a “putong” welcome ritual by the Marinduque Provincial Capitol Choir.

But perhaps the shower of petals and leaves, the shouts of “Mabuhay” and crowning with flowers the “putong” way should have also been shared with Yook’s PAR Team composed of Enrique Fiedalan, Winnifredo Famadico, Teresita Saez, Linda Reanzares, Helen Fiedalan, Paquito delos Santos, Teresita Reanzares, together with the Punong Barangay, Edgar Perlas. This new expression of community based leadership has strongly spelled big hope for Yook.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

New Press Release about our upcoming tour!

http://www.prlog.org/10143073-introducing-la-contadinas-new-italy-tour-with-documentary-filmmaker-steven-robert-mccurdy.html

Click on this link to read our latest press release!

This press release announces the new "Postcards from Italy" tour that we are launching for 2009.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Italy trip Dec 2005








Tramonto a Roma - Roman Sunset - December 2005



In December 2005, I had the opportunity to travel with my boss to Italy to attend a research conference in Genoa, and she and I decided to extend our trip into a week's vacation. I studied Italian intensively for 3 weeks prior to the trip and tried to speak as much Italian as I could during the trip. I used to be fluent in French, so it wasn't as hard as it might otherwise have been :-) Trying to connect with the locals in their native language really enhanced my overall experience. I could tell that they were touched by my efforts (and amused at my mistakes!). After our conference in Genoa, we hopped on a train and headed "solo andata" (one-way) to Pisa before proceeding to Rome. Whereas others had told me that Pisa was 'boring' or a 'let-down' or 'not worth seeing,' I found it breathtaking and exhilerating. We rounded the corner in the cab at night, on a full moon, to have the Leaning Tower come into view right in front of us. I was moved to tears. The next morning, we climbed the steps, the worn, marble steps once walked by Galileo, to the very top for a spectacular view of the city and the mountains to the northeast. What part of that was 'boring' or 'not worth seeing?' Here we are at the top of the Leaning Tower:


Pisa is also where I first heard about and experienced a wonderful Tuscan treat - vin santo with cantuccini. Vin santo is a sweet dessert wine made from dried grapes, and it is enjoyed by dunking cantucci, or cantuccini (small cookies, or biscotti) into the glass. Certainly not 'boring!'


Then we traveled to Rome. I am not a city person, per se. I generally prefer being in the woods and the mountains, away from the crowds. However, there was something so remarkable about the ancient history of Rome that I felt myself wanting to stay, and wanting to try living there for a while. We hired a guide and explored the Forum, Trevi Fountain, Piazza Navona, and the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel. That evening, we enjoyed an incredibly delicious feast at Il Giardino, a restaurant right near our Hotel, the Antica Roma, specializing in Sardinian food. I made the grave error (!) of telling the waiter how much I was enjoying the Sicilian food - oh Mamma Mia, not a good mistake to make! He feigned terrible indignation, and then kindly explained my 'faux pas.' :-) We also did a fair amount of shopping and found a terrific shop selling our new favorite - limoncello! Here is my boss trying to decide which bottle(s) of limoncello to buy!



Italy New Year's Eve Tour Dec 06/Jan 07

In December 2006, I participated in Giuliana's

La Contadina New Year's eve tour. This is our

group after a day spent savoring the Umbrian town of Assisi. We arrived in Rome and transferred to Siena, where we experienced fabulous Tuscan food and wine and where we toured the Campo and the enjoyed exploring the historic city center. One of my biggest adventures was finding the yarn shop I'd identified on-line before my trip, and I did find it, and I bought many beautiful skeins of Italian yarn! The shopkeepers were very kind and quite amused at my excitement over finding them :-)




After a side trip to Monteriggione, a true Tuscan gem, we left Tuscany for Umbria and settled into a lovely "castello" (a beautifully-renovated farm house on extensive and well-kept grounds) on the outskirts of Assisi. What a fabulous place for a New Year's Eve celebration, and a great home base for excursions into Assisi and Todi.




The end of our tour would find us in Spoleto, a hilltop town in southern Umbria featuring an ancient Roman theater, the impressive Ponte delle Torri, and the site of our cooking class - a memorable afternoon and evening indeed! Here is a picture of us in our cooking class:


Sunday, November 16, 2008

Visit Tecate by train for dose of border goodwill

A leisurely ride by the Pacific Southwest Railway Museum sets just the right mood for a day trip into the genial town -- site of the famous brewery. The air is already laced with diesel fumes as the conductor shouts, "All aboard!" The engineer sounds the whistle, and the locomotive lurches forward. Squeals of delight emanate from the passenger cars. This train ride is a first for many of the children. The adults share their excitement because they are setting off on a unique international adventure.

One or two Saturdays a month, nearly 250 passengers -- kids and grown-ups -- climb aboard the 1930s-era passenger cars in Campo in eastern San Diego County for the one-hour trip to Tecate, a town that provides a tranquil alternative to bustling and crime-ridden Tijuana, about 30 miles west. Volunteers from the Pacific Southwest Railway Museum, which runs the trips, have restored the cars to their original appearance. Until they were retired in the mid-1980s, the cars trundled across northern New Jersey for more than five decades, carrying New York City commuters.

The engine chugs along at 15 mph. Train aficionados, including Bob and Sandy Schussler, share the history of this stretch of track, which until the mid-1950s carried passengers traveling east from the coast. "We are preserving the legacy of railroading in Southern California," says Bob Schussler, a former Marine who, with his wife, has spent more than a decade as an active volunteer with the museum. Round-trip tickets cost $43 for adults and $23 for children. The trips often sell out weeks in advance, especially during the milder spring and fall months, when extra excursions are added to meet the increased demand.
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The most dangerous animal in Africa

Statistics show that the Hippo kills the most people in Africa every year with exception to the mosquito. I don't believe that these statistics are very accurate as the Crocodile also takes many lives every year.
The Hippo is 99.99% a herbivore so after killing a person they just leave the body and go back into the water. A Crocodile will normally eat whatever it kills.
Here are two examples:

David goes down to the river to do some washing and in the process he gets killed by a Hippo. The evidence is very clear that a Hippo killed him as the hippo’s footprints may be visible and the bite marks on David’s body are also clear, so another death is marked off for that year.

David goes down to river to do some washing in doing so gets killed and eaten by a Crocodile. No one saw what happened, all they know is that he is missing.

So it is impossible to say who kills more people, it could be either Hippo or Crocodile. I think it’s the Crocodile.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Daegu best bars KTV pubs nighlife korean city

Daegu is the fourth largest city in South Korea after Seoul, Busan, and Incheon. It is the capital of Gyeongsangbuk-do province, although it is not legally part of that province. As with South Korea's other metropolitan cities, Daegu's government reports directly to the national government.

Daegu is well known for its nightlife. This entertainment central city of South Korea is the place to be for party animals always on the look out for a big night out.

Some night entertainment in Daegu including Night Clubs, Bars & Pubs, Cinemas & Theaters, MMC Mangyeonggwan Cinema, Kolon Outdoor Concert Hall,
Daegu Culture & Arts Center.

There ara a lot of popular bars in Daegu. Some of them are :
1. Mask, the alley just behind the Dunkin Donuts, as you exit the subway stop
2. Tombo
3. Bus
4. Communes, usually pretty chill in the early evening, but then can get very busy! The work crew is great and the music is always always good. It's very music themed with great decor and just a good feel! Check the bathroom and the boards to find out all of the happenings!
5. Thunderbirds, a little more young and trendy; cozy with red couches and a lot of fun things going on!
6. Clubs downtown, Frog & Bubble is very popular. Very fun if you're there with a good group, but the music is kind of hit or miss. It's 10,000 won, and that's access to both clubs, and one free drink ticket! If you get hungry though--the cheese and crackers dish is recommended!
7. The Volken
8. Hof Bonheur

Daegu best travel places and tourist attractions to visit :
1. Gyeongsang-gamyeong Park
2. Gukchae-bosang Memorial Park
3. Inheung Village(Nampyeong Moon Clan's
4. Dalseong Park
5. Dalseong Oriental Arbor vitae Forest
6. Daegu Tower
7. Daegu Hyanggyo Confucian Academy
8. Donghwasa Temple
9. Duryu Park
10. Suseongmot Resort
11. Sincheon River
12. Daegu World Cup
13. EXCO Daegu
14. Jeil Church
15. Mt.Palgongsan

Daegu Nightlife
Daegu winehouse in nighlife entertainment

Daegu Tower
Daegu tower the landmark of the city

Watch The Bus Bar in Daegu video here

Bangalore Temples

Bangalore is home for huge number of temples and they attract large number of devotees from across the country. Some of these temples are very old and they reflect the ancient history, heritage, culture and history. These temples with their ornate carvings on the walls and stone pillars stone pillars, beautiful statues have become popular tourist attractions of the city. Majority of temples in the city are dedicated to Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva.

For example, the Venkataramanswamy Temple is more than 300 years old. It is built in the Dravidian style. Each of the temples in Bangalore are known for their own unique architecture and religious importance. Some of the temples are very popular among the tourists. There are some which are not so famous due to lack of awareness among the people of their heritage.

Some of the popular temples in the city are:
  • Bull Temple
  • Dharmaraja Temple
  • Gangadhareswara Cave Temple
  • Venkataramanswamy Temple
  • Someshwara Temple
  • Nandi Teertha Temple
  • Kadu Mallikarjunaswamy Temple
  • Dodda Ganesha temple
  • ISKCON Sri Radha Krishna Chandra Temple
  • Shiva Statue

Seoul Korean Massage Escort Girl info

Korean Massage

Seoul and other korean city are welcome for all foreigners. Visiting Seoul may be so exhausted. If we want to find some massages and spa in Seoul, there are a lot of massage places in Seoul.

Try to Relaxing spot in seoul tower and Myondong. Seoul tower is very beautiful view.
Food is very dericias in Myondon.

Jiljinbags are great and relatively inexpensive but if you don't know the rules or speak the language it can be really difficult to understand what's going on.
My picks are the Park Hyatt (exit 1 Samsong Station) to really get the best pampering massage, complete with a foot scrub, your choice of local ingredients, and music. It's worth every cent- trully unique. Dal in Cheogndam is also outstanding, it's behind a store called Mue. If you are in the Hannam area you have the choice of Spa Day which is good value. If you are looking for a Korean style Spa try Teheran Spa it's pretty different.

Watch Korean Girl Massages in Seoul Video here

Friday, November 14, 2008

Harbin International Ice and Snow Sculpture Festival

Harbin (哈尔滨) is the capital of Heilongjiang Province in north east China. Harbin is one of the major cities in Northeast China. Located on the banks of the Songhua River, Harbin is the capital of Heilongjiang Province as well as the biggest city in Northeast China. The city is well-known for its unique, Russian and European-influenced architecture.



Harbin is famous for its ice festival, Its bone-chilling winter makes it one of the best ski resorts in China, the Yabuli Ski Resort. Harbin is the terminus for the international railway, the Tran-Siberian Railway. Harbin also attracts the visitor from the Sun Island, Siberia Tigers Park, Ice Festival and Chinese-Russian Market in Harbin.



The annual Harbin International Ice and Snow Sculpture Festival has been held since 1963. It had been interrupted for a number of years during the Cultural Revolution until it was resumed in 1985. The Harbin Ice Festival, established in 1985, is held annually from January 5 and lasts for over one month. Harbin is the capital city of Heilongjiang Province and this is China's original and greatest ice artwork festival, attracting hundreds of thousands of local people and visitors from all over the world.



There are three main areas to view the ice sculptures (newly made annually). Some of Harbin Ice International Festival Show are :

1. The Sun Park Island

2. Zhaolin Park

3. Harbin Ice and Snow World



Harbin Photos :



St Sophia Harbin

St. Sophia Church in Harbin



Harbin Snow Festival

Harbin International Ice and Snow Sculpture Festival



Watch Harbin Ice Lights and St Sophia's Church Video here



Sunday, November 9, 2008

Mexico's drug wars curtail holiday travel


Brenda Cardoso says her family will not spend Christmas with her grandmother in Tijuana because they do not believe they will be safe. “It’s sad because it was a tradition that we grew up with.” Fearing that they won't be safe visiting relatives south of the border, many are forsaking family traditions and staying in the U.S. "It's not safe for us to gather over there," said Cardoso, who was born in Mexico but is now a U.S. citizen. "It's sad because it was a tradition that we grew up with. . . . Now, unfortunately, we can't do it because of how the situation is in Mexico."

As Mexican nationals and Mexican Americans begin to plan their holidays, many say they are choosing not to make the annual trek home to visit relatives. While some are dissuaded by the worsening economy, others are avoiding travel to Mexico because they fear the rampant kidnappings, killings and shootouts. The U.S. State Department issued a travel alert late last month warning U.S. citizens to take precautions and to be aware of the "increasingly violent fight for control of narcotics trafficking routes," especially in the cities of Tijuana, Chihuahua and Ciudad Juarez. "They don't want to go home because of the problems in TJ, all the shootings and the killings," he said.

read article

Incheon korea city best bars clubs tourism places

Incheon (인천, 仁川), also Inchon, is a metropolitan city and a major seaport in South Korea on the coast directly to the west of Seoul.

Incheon's official city flower, the rose, is abundant in the summer, climbing over walls and fences. Even the subway route into Seoul from Incheon is lined with roses and beautifully-tended shrubbery.

Nightlife in Incheon is so wonderful, One of the most famous nightlife in Incheon ins Goose Goose.

Goose Goose located in Bupyeong near the train station is perhaps the most well-known expat bar in the city. To Find Goose Goose, locate Starbucks and then look for The Body Shop. From the Body Shop, walk down the side street (perpendicular to the main street) to the next block and turn right. Walk down about half a block and look up to your right. You will see a huge sign. The entrance goes downstairs to the bar. Another popular bar located near the Goose is Woodstock. However instead of turning left towards The Body Shop, turn right and Woodstock is less than 20 meters from the corner. There is also Wild Bill's in Galsan.

Best Incheon bars, Incheon Nightlife, Incheon Clubs are listed here :
1. Goose Goose, Bupyeong. A western pub where many English teachers and other foreigners go, although things get rowdy sometimes.
2. Rock Bar, Bupyeong. Very cheap beer, 6,000 won for 2000CC. Watch out for rats in the toilets.
3. Woodstock, Buyeong.
4. 66, Yeonsu.

Best places to go and best things to do in Incheon, including port, shopping, city, and park.

1. The islands around Incheon
2. Full House
3. The sea and shorelines
4. Incheon City
5. Incheon International Airport
6. Hangang River
7. Incheon Port
8. General MacArthur Monument
9. Chinatown
10. Wolmi-do
11. Songdo Resort
12. Jayu Park Jayu (Freedom)

Jayu Walk Way
Walking in Jayu Walk Way in Incheon

Incheon City
Incheon City nowaday

Watch SEOUL KOREA Suttle subway Incheon airport Video here

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Instant Japan

Japan’s wild side is often lost in translation: True, where it’s urban, it’s really urban, and where it’s expensive, it’s really expensive. But we’re not talking about a business trip to Tokyo. There is an undeveloped Japan—and plenty of it. A landscape as forested as any on Earth stretches from the subtropical reefs near Okinawa to the soaring, jagged mountains of Hokkaido. It’s rugged, welcoming, and a better bargain than you might think. "Japan’s ryokans [country inns] are the best value in the world," says Duff Trimble, whose Toronto-based Wabi-Sabi Tours runs custom guided Japan adventures. A top-notch ryokan, for about $400 per person per night, dishes up incredible service, serene rooms, communal soaks in hot springs, garden settings, and infallibly polite hosts. (Don’t ever look puzzled unless you’re willing to be aided, abetted, and maybe even escorted by legions of locals.) Simple small-town hotels run less than $100. And at mealtime, for under $20 you can fill up on sushi and other Japanese delicacies—if you like seaweed, roe, eel, and the odd giant sea snail, you’re in the right place. A seven-day rail pass on the country’s sleek 180-mph bullet trains can be had for under $300—less than half the cost of an equivalent pass in Europe. Best of all, Trimble says, "people are eager to welcome you. They’re fiercely proud of their culture, which is so closely tied to Japan’s landscape."

Animal Collective Names

Here's a list of the collective nouns for some of the African animals:

Baboons – Troop
Badgers – Cete
Bats – Cloud
Buffaloes – Obstinacy
Cheetahs – Coalition
Crocodiles – Bask
Elephants – Parade or Memory
Giraffes – Journey
Hippos – Raft or Pod
Hyenas – Clan
Leopards – Leap
Lions – Pride
Monkeys – Shrewdness
Owls – Parliament
Porcupines – Prickle
Rhinos - Crash
Zebras – Dazzle

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Huangshan china beautiful mount best tea house and bars

Huangshan (黄山), or Mount Huang or Yellow Mount, is a prefecture-level city centered around the Huangshan Mountains in southern Anhui province, People's Republic of China.

Huangshan, is famous for its mount beauty, and was acclaimed through art and literature during a good part of Chinese history. Today it holds the same fascination for visitors, poets, painters and photographers who come on pilgrimage to the site, which is renowned for its magnificent scenery made up of many granite peaks and rocks emerging out of a sea of cloud



Entertainment in Huang Shan is fairly limited to hiking and exploring the mountain. However, Tunxi (also known as Huang Shan Shi, or Huang Shan City), a town 70 km (43 miles) away from the main entrance to the mountain area, is home to teahouses, karaoke centers and a few bars. Yilin Ge Teahouse offers a nightly tea ceremony and a Hui opera performance. Huangshan Bar has great snacks and cocktails and the Huashan Hotel has a sports and entertainment center. Tunxi also has a small but fun night market located along the banks of the Xin'an River.



Huangshan has many tea houses. There are also KTV, discos, internet bars, cafes and bars to make you enjoy the city.



Some best bars and tea house in Huang Shan are listed here :

1. Yilin Ge Tea House

A cultural site with simple and elegant art style offers the cultural performances of tea ceremony, Huangmei Opera (popular in Anhui Province) and Hui Opera which are always performing to the delight of visitors.

Add: Tunxi Ancient Street



2. Huangshan Ziteng Tea House

This tea house serves some of the best tea grades in Anhui Province. It is reputed to be one of the largest and the best tea houses in Anhui Province.

Add: No. 9-12 in Qianyuan South Road of Tunxi District, Huangshan City, Anhui Province, China



3. Huangshan Tianzhu Tea House

Add: No. 3 in Qianyuan South Road of Tunxi District, Huangshan City, Anhui Province, China



Huangshan best bars :

1. Huangshan International Hotel Dancery

Add: No. 1 in Small Mt. Hua Scenic Spot



2. 9C Bar

This bar also offers quality in all ramifications.

Add: Huangshan Shangmao Emporium.



3. Huangshan Pinwei (tasting) Bar

This bar offers western wine, cocktail, coffee, compote, snacks and beer to delight visitors.

Add: No. 20-22 in Kangle Road of Huangshan Shangmao Emporium.



Huangshan



Watch Huangshan Street at Night Video here