Saturday, May 30, 2009

Nahargarh Fort, Jaipur

Along with palaces, and other attractions we set our eyes on exploring the most important tourist attractions of the city i.e., the forts. In Jaipur there are 3 most amazing forts - Amber Fort, Jaigarh Fort and Nahargarh Fort. In this as the title of the post suggests we will explore Nahargarh Fort.

This fort is also known by the name Tiger Fort. When seen from the air it forms marvelous sight along with other two forts. It occupies the Northern part of Jaipur on the Aravalli Hills. It is strategically placed to cushion Amer from the enemy attacks.


According to the legend, this fort was named after a dead Rathore prince, Nahar Singh, whose spirit used to haunt the site and would cause collapse of the construction of the fort. Later a Tantrik's prayer was arranged to drive away the spirit, who agreed to leave on the condition that the fort should be named after him. Hence the name. The entrance of the fort leads one into spacious and impressive main courtyard, with large ‘dwars’ on both sides embellished with decorative motifs of elephants, warriors on horseback, flowers and birds. There are also weather-worn cannon carriages that have faced the ravages of time.

The Monsoon Palace


This palace was designed by eminent Bengali architect Vidyadhar Bhattacharya. Built in two floors, the ground was for summer and the first floor for winter residence. It has nine suites, one for each of the nine queens of the maharajah. There are bathrooms, toilets, and kitchens, all well-lit and ventilated. An interesting feature is the long and architecturally elegant, but narrow, corridors, some with windows overlooking the main courtyard. It is believed that the these corridors were used by the maharajah to access each queen independently without the others having knowledge of his whereabouts, but hopeful of a visit nevertheless!

The doors and windows had colored panes, some of which are still intact. And some of the rooms still have Belgian mirrors adorning the walls. Even the brass door latches work. Each suite has the same design of floral and bird motifs. Even the hooks used for hanging the manually operated fans have painted designs to blend with those on the arches and in the niches. The plaster on the walls is of limestone, clean and smooth.

This is the top of the various suites of the palace.

Next we will explore the Jaigarh Fort.

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.

Friday, May 29, 2009

What an interesting life: Full Time RVing

In RV-speak, Full Hook Up, or FHU, is a site that has water, sewer and electricity. We're here to hook you up with facts, helpful hints and useful information about fulltime RVing that we have picked up in our travels. If you read our site and don't find what you're looking for, or if you still have questions, please contact us and we'll either add it to our site or respond to you personally.
see more at RV Full Hookup

Thursday, May 28, 2009

VIVA MARINDUQUE 2009 REPORT

The VIVA MARINDUQUE (Ani ng Sining 2009) report was recently turned over to the National Commission for Culture & the Arts and may be browsed through the following link: www.geocities.com/teatro_balangaw/viva09.html




Next year's project may see the involvement of national mainstream artists who have recently undertaken research work on Marinduque culture as part of a forthcoming Philippine participation in a cultural exposition in South Korea.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Jaipur, the Pink City and more

After visiting many palaces of the city in Jaipur we continued to explore the city and visited quite a lot of forts and other monuments of the city. As we did not spend much time for shopping on the trip we thought of shopping in the city of Jaipur.

In Rajasthan this is the best city to do the shopping. There are many markets known for the art and craft of Rajasthan. Some of them are Kishanpol Bazar, Haldiyon Ka Rasta, Mahiharon Ka Rasta, M.I. Road, Jauhari Bazar, Bapu Bazar, Nehru Bazaar. Each of these markets offer wide variety of products. Explaining the variety does not make any sense and best enjoyed only by experience the shopping here.

There are several monuments in the city and let us visit few of them and the remaining in subsequent post.

Chokhi Dhani

It is neither a monument nor any heritage site. But it does showcase the Rajasthani tradition. It is a five star ethnic village resort located at Tonk road 35 kms away from Jaipur.

For the tourists visiting Jaipur it provides awesome experience with respect to Rajasthani culture. Every day one Mela is organized in the evening. People can visit Chokhi Dhani Village resort, have dinner, enjoy camel ride, Elephant rides, Bullock cart rides on nominal charges. They can also enjoy traditional dance forms, folk songs of Rajasthan here. There is opportunity for everybody who loves shopping in handicrafts.

Albert Hall

Many of the palaces of the rulers of Rajasthan were designed by a British architect, Sir Swinton Jacob. He also designed the Albert Hall. Today, it is home for exquisite collection of sculptures, paintings, objects of art, natural history specimens, an Egyptian mummy and a beautiful Persian carpet.

This is a beautiful place not to be missed during the Jaipur trip. Unfortunately we could not go inside as it was very early in the morning and we had to proceed with our journey as planned earlier. We could take only snaps of the place from outside and proceed further. But on my next visit to the city I surely plan to cover this and many more.


In the next post we shall visit other remarkable forts 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.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Melkote Ponds

Melkote (High or Superior Fort) is located in Mandya district of Karnataka state in India. It is famous for various temples and ponds. The famous temples of this place are seen in the earlier post Melkote Temples.

Some of the well known ponds of this place are:


Kalyani Pond

The large pond which is part of the Cheluvanarayanaswamy temple is called Kalyani. It is also known by the name Pushkaranani. The beauty of the pond is enhanced by its location, the steps that lead to the water and the Mandaps built around the pond.

The view of the pond from Yoganarsimhaswamy temple.

The mandapa around the pond.

There are carvings at the bottom of the pillars of mandapa. One such carving on the pillar is shown above.

Akka Tangi Kola

There are a pair of ponds behind the Cheluvanarayanaswamy temple known as Akka Tangi Kola In English it translates to sister ponds. The water of Akka kola is sour-salty and that of Tangi kola is sweet. Only the sweet water is used for the temples.

"HULING HIRIT SA TAG-INIT", MAY 29 AT POCTOY BEACH



Marinduque Tourism Council chair, Atty. Allan Velasco has met with officials of the municipality of Torrijos, Provincial Tourism Office and Sangguniang Kabataan for the holding of a summer youth adventure program dubbed as "Huling Hirit sa Tag-init".

This activity promotes sports and tourism development with Poctoy beach as the principal playground. It also provides an opportunity for the Marinduque youth to say goodbye to summer with a big bang before they go back to school or work within or outside the island-province - huling hirit, thus.

Competitions include "Beach Volleyball", "Battle of the Bands", and "Bikini Open", with the following prizes:
For Beach Volleyball (1st: P 2,000; 2nd 1,500.00; 3rd P 1,000)
For Battleof the Bands (1st: P 10,000; 2nd 7,000; P 5,000 with seven consolation prizes of P 1,000 each)
For Bikini Open: (1st: 5,000; 2nd 3,000; 3rd 2,000 with 10 consolation prizes of P 500 each)

Meanwhile, in cooperation with GMA7 and Q-TV a full program presentation on Marinduque was featured last Sunday in "Kay Susan Tayo" at 10:30 am. The program featured Balanacan harbor with Luzon Datum of 1911 landmark, Palo Maria beach (Marinduque's response to Boracay), Poctoy white sand beach, Malbog Sulfuric Spring, Marinduque Hotspring, Katala Beach Resort, "Putong" ritual and the favorite local dish, Adobong Manok sa Gata courtesy of "Kusina sa Plaza" with TV-hosts, Susan and Ariana.

Q-TV featured the Battle of Moriones in "Events Incorporated" at 8:30 pm last Saturday with hosr Tim Yap. The "Battle" was held on Holy Thursday in Boac and also featured an interview with Gov. Bong Carrion on the origin of the moriones tradition.

Forthcoming television features include a special coverage of Marinduque's lenten traditions in the Living Asia Channel and Kim Atienza's Saturday program "Matang Lawin.

Friday, May 15, 2009

African Elephant Pictures










For information on African Elephants "CLICK HERE"

Jaipur, the Pink City

From Udaipur we proceeded towards Jaipur and by distance this is the longest distance we traveled in a single day on this trip. This city is the capital of Rajasthan. The visually charming city is built in 1727 A.D. by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh Ji. The city is also built of pink stucco, an imitation of sandstone. The houses, shops and havelis through out the city are all pink. The only planned city of its time, Jaipur is encircled by a formidable wall. Even this wall and the huge gateways guarding the entrance to the city are all in pink. Hence the name 'the Pink City'.

The city displays a remarkable architectural treat. It is known for its beautiful palaces, rugged fortresses built on barren hills. Once the palaces of Maharaja's are now the heritage hotels and are excellent place to stay and experience royal splendor. Apart from these there are plenty of beautiful gardens and attractive monuments throughout the city.

There are several monuments in the city and let us visit few of them and the remaining in subsequent post.


Hawa Mahal

The world famous landmark of Jaipur, Hawa Mahal is located to the north of the city's main road intersection, the Badi Chaupad. Built in 1799 by Sawai Pratap Singh is the best known specimen of fanciful architecture. it is an integral part of the City Palace though standing away from the main complex. At first glance it looks rather whimsical in design. When looked from the roadside, it appears as mere facade. But there is much more than meets the eye.

It is a five storied architecture and is constructed of red and pink sandstone, highlighted with white quakeee quick lime. The side facing the street outside the palace complex has 953 small windows, and the breeze (hawa) which circulates through these windows gives the palace its name, and keeps it cool even in hot months.

The entrance opens onto a courtyard with a double-storied building on three sides, and one on the eastern wing with three more stories, which is just one room wide. There are no stairs to reach the upper floors, only ramps.

City Palace

Strategically located in the heart of the Pink City of Jaipur, the architecture is an imposing blend of traditional Rajasthan and Mughal art. Sprawling over the one-seventh of the walled city, it is divided into a series of courtyards, gardens and buildings. It is home to several palatial structures like the Chandra Mahal, Shri Govind Dev Temple, Mubarak Mahal, and the City Palace Museum.

Mubarak Mahal, built by Maharaja Madho Singh, is one of the more important palaces inside the City Palace Complex. It has a beautifully carved marble gate with heavy brass doors on either side of this gate. Beyond this gate, lies the 'Diwan-E-Khas'- a meeting place where the Maharajahs used to entertain a select few. Shri Govind Dev Ji temple is highly revered by the erstwhile royal family. Sawai Man Singh Museum was founded in 1959 by Maharaja Sawai Man Singh II. The exhibits comprise of the ancestral collections built up by the successive rulers of Ajmer and Jaipur.

Jal Mahal Palace

An 18th century pleasure palace, hovering over Mansagar Lake, is noted for its convoluted design and magnificent structural design. Situated across the cenotaphs, there is a land bridge that leads one to the Jal Mahal Palace.

In the next post we shall visit other remarkable monuments 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.


Thursday, May 14, 2009

MARINDUQUE PHOTOS



Non-marinduqueno photographers seem to have a way of looking at this island differently. Interesting sites I have visited recently are the following: Dong Ho's Eskapo http://www.dongism.blogspot.com/ and Tabblo.Com www.tabblo.com/studio/stories/bytag/marinduque with really unbelievably mesmerizing photos. Both seem drawn naturally to the island of Gaspar in Gasan, Marinduque.

MORIONES AT THE ASEAN CORNER


The National Commission for Culture & the Arts was venue for The Asean Corner where the Moriones Mask of Marinduque was prominently displayed. The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is actively promoting effective cooperation in the field of culture, with the aim of enhancing mutual understanding andsolidarity among the peoples of Southeast Asia. In this endeavor the ASEAN Committee on Culture and Information agreed to have an ASEAN Corner in each of the member states.

This exhibition is the Philippine counterpart. The project promotes various aspects of culture emanating from the many artistic traditions of each country. Various artifacts were exhibited from the following countries: Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

We, Marinduquenos should be happy with the singular recognition of our Moriones folk tradition. We may expect further interest on the Moriones to be generated with the NCCA's choice of this traditional mask as part of the exhibit. The mask displayed at the said exhibit is made of dita wood, walis tambo, latex paint and body hairs of a goat (for the eyelashes). It received the Most Original Award in the 2006 Moriones Festival Competition in Gasan (in photo with this blogger).







Wednesday, May 13, 2009

List of African Snakes

Adders

Berg Adder – Bitis atropos
Gaboon Adder – Bitis gabonica
Many-Horned Adder – Bitis cornuta
Puff Adder – Bitis arietans
Rhombic Night Adder – Causus rhombeatus

Blind Snakes

Beaked Blind Snake – Typhlops schinzi
Bibron’s Blind Snake – Typhlops bibronii
Boyle’s Blind Snake – Typhlops boylei
Delalande’s Blind Snake – Typhlops lalandei
Fornasini’s Blind Snake – Typhlops fornasinii
Schlegel’s Blind Snake – Typhlops schlegelii
Slender Blind Snake – Typhlops obtusus

Cobras

Black Spitting Cobra – Naja nigricollis woodi
Cape Cobra – Naja nivea
Forest Cobra – Naja melannoleuca
Mozambique Spitting Cobra – Naja mossambica
Snouted Cobra – Naja annulifera
Western Barred Spitting Cobra – Naja nigricollis nigricincta

File Snakes

Angola File Snake – Mehhelya vernayi
Black File Snake – Mehhelya nyassae
Cape File Snake – Mehelya capensis

Grass Snakes

Olive Grass Snake – Psammophis phillipsii
Short-snouted Grass Snake – Psammophis sibilans brevirostris

House Snakes

Aurora House Snake – Lamprohis aurora
Fisk’s House Snake – Lamprohis fiskii
Brown House Snake – Lamprohis fuliginosus
Olive House Snake – Lamprophis inornatus
Spotted House Snake – Lamprohis guttatus
Swazi Rock Snake – Lamprohis swazicus
Yellow-Bellied House Snake – Lamprohis fuscus

Mambas

Black Mamba – Dendroaspis polylepis
Green Mamba – Dendroaspis angusticeps

Pythons

African Rock Python – Python sebae
Anchieta’s Dwarf Python – Python anchietae

Skaapstekers

Spotted Skaapsteker – Psammophylax rhombeatus
Striped Skaapsteker – Psammophylax tritaeniatus

Slug Eaters

Common Slug Eater – Duberria lutrix
Spotted Slug Eater – Duberria variegata

Thread Snakes

Black Thread Snake – Leptotyphlops nigricans
Cape Thread Snake – Leptotyphlops conjunctus
Damara Thread Snake – Leptotyphlops labialis
Distant’s Thread Snake – Leptotyphlops distanti
Long-Tailed Thread Snake – Leptotyphlops longicaudus
Peter’s Thread Snake – Leptotyphlops scutifrons
Slender Thread Snake – Leptotyphlops gracilior
Tello’s Thread Snake – Leptotyphlops telloi
Western Thread Snake – Leptotyphlops occidentalis

Water Snakes

Common Brown Water Snake – Lycodonomorphus rufulus
Dusky-Bellied Water Snake – Lycodonomorphus laevissimus
Green Water Snake – Philothamnus hoplogaster
Mulanje Water Snake – Lycodonomorphus leleupi
Whyte’s Water Snake – Lycodonomorphus whytii

Wolf Snakes

Cape Wolf Snake – Lycophidion capense
Eastern Wolf Snake – Lycophidion semiannule
Dwarf Wolf Snake – Cryptolycus nanus
Hellmich’s Wolf Snake – Lycophidion hellmichi
Variegated Wolf Snake – Lycophidion variegatum

Other Snake Species

Boomslang – Dispholidus typus
Cape Centipede Eater – Aparallactus capensis
Cape Coral Snake – Aspidelaps lubricus
Eastern Tiger Snake – Telescopus semiannulatus
Flower-Pot Snake – Ramphotyphlops braminus
Mole Snake – Pseudaspis cana
Natal Black Snake – Macrelaps microlepidotus
Red-lipped Herald – Crotaphopeltis botamboeia
Rhombic Egg-eater – Dasypeltis scabra
Rinkhals – Hemachatus haemachatus
Rufous Beaked Snake – Rhamphiophis oxyrhynchus rostratus
Shield-nose Snake – Aspidelaps scutatus
Spotted Bush Snake – Philothamnus semivariegatus
Spotted Harlequin Snake – Homoroselaps lacteus
Stiletto Snake – Atractaspis bibronii
Sundevall’s Garter Snake – Elapsoidea sundevallii
Sundevall’s Shovel-snout – Prosymna sundevallii
Twig Snake – Thelotornis capensis
Yellow-and-Black Sea Snake – Pelamis platurus

This list of African snake species will be updated in future.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Yinchuan Ningxia Hui Ethnic Nightlife

Yinchuan (银川) is the capital of Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region in China. It is located in the middle of the Yinchuan or Ningxia Plain. It is sheltered from the deserts of Mongolia by the high ranges of the Helan Mountain to its west.

Ethnic minorities in Yinchuan include Hui, Han, Manchu and Mongolian peoples. Being one of a very few parts of China where an ethnic minority (Hui people) hold the power of governance, it is a treasure of Chinese-Muslim culture.

The city's attractions include the Sand-lake and the Western Xia tombs. There are two pagodas in Yinchuan that are part of the 'Eight Famous Scenery of Ningxia': one is the Haibao Pagoda in the northern suburb and the other is the Chengtiansi Pagoda in the west.

Yinchuan Nightlife

Yinchuan's people still holding their traditional folk customs. The Muslim culture is still strongly maintained, while Halal Food is easily found across the city. Though the nightlife in Yinchuan is very colorful. There are some pubs, net cafes and gymnasiums. At night, they are filled with young people. In the pubs, some people especially young girls are dancing freely, while some middle-aged white collars choose to sit quietly and look at the scenery out of the window.


Singing and Music in Hui Nationality Style, Yinchuan
When traveling in Yinchuan, you can enjoy the “Hui Nationality Flower” and “Kouxian” which deeply reflect folk style. Circulating around the northwest area in china “Hui Nationality Flower”, a folk song, is sonorous and mellifluous in melody, simple and fresh in lyric. Deeply enjoyed by Hui women “Kouxian” (Kou’er) is a mini plucked instrument.

Yinchuan bars, pubs and cafe and nightlife activities :
1. Lian Yuan Bar. Located a couple blocks South of the XiXia district commercial center (look for the KFC sign) is a well decorated bar, and the best in 'New Town'.

2. Fall in Love Bar & Marry Bar. Located on Hubin Dong Jie near all the main hotels. Boasting comfortable seating and a younger crowd, Xixia Beer is locally produced and is comparable to a decent Canadian brew.

3. Yinchuan South Gate Square. Yinchuan South Gate Square is a good place to watch performances. Yinchuan South Gate Square has held a great number of large-scale art and cultural activities.

Yinchuan Ethnic Hui, singing in Hui Nationality style
Yinchuan Hui Ethnic singing


Yinchuan largest mosque. Islam is the common religion in Yinchuan.
yinchuan mosque


Yinchuan south Gate Square, has held a great number of large-scale art and cultural activities.
Yinchuan south gate square


Yinchuan Jade Emperor Pavilion was built during the reign of Emperor Hongwu in Ming Dynasty, with a history of 600 years.
Jade Emperor Pavilion


Yinchuan city, has a population of around 750,000.
yinchuan city view

Friday, May 8, 2009

'KABAYAN' VISITS MARINDUQUE

For the second time in six months Vice-President of the Philippines, Noli de Castro visited Marinduque for consultations and dialogue with local leaders headed by Gov. Jose Antonio N. Carrion together with the Marinduque Provincial Development Council. As Cabinet Officer for Regional Development (COD) for the MIMAROPA Region, de Castro wanted to find out if national government efforts to weather the storm brought about by the current global economic and financial crisis are felt in the local level.

De Castro gave an update of provincial government requests made through his office durng his November 2008 visit and made fresh commitments, foremost of which is the concreting of farm-to-market roads to the tune of P. 8-million in prioritized areas in the municpality of Buenavista. Following is this blogsite's media release on the said visit held last May 6th at the Marinduque State College, Boac Campus:


MARINDUQUE PROJECTS PINONDOHAN NI NOLI

Dumating ang pangalawang pangulo ng Pilipinas, Noli de Castro sa Marinduque noong Martes, Mayo 6, para sa isang pulungan tungkol sa lalawigan kasama ang mga lokal na pinuno at mga kawani ng Marinduque Provincial Development Council. Isinagawa ang pagpupulong sa Audio Visual Room ng Marinduque State College na dinaluhan din ng ilang representante mula sa ibat-ibang line agencies sa Maynila at pang-rehiyong mga tanggapan. Sinalubong si ‘Kabayan’ ni Gov. Jose Antonio N. Carrion mula sa Marinduque Airport patungo sa pagdarausan ng pulong.

P8-M PARA SA BUENAVISTA

Agad na ibinalita ng bise-presidente na base sa kanyang pakikipag-usap kay Carrion ay nagpasya siya na maglaan kaagad ng 8-milyong piso mula sa tanggapan ng bise-presidente para maisagawa na sa lalong madaling panahon ang farm-to market roads sa bayan ng Buenavista, isang balitang masayang tinanggap ni Mayor Ofelia Madrigal na dumalo rin sa pulong.

PAUNANG P10-M PARA SA OSPITAL

Inihayag din ni ‘Kabayan’ na ang isa sa mga hininging tulong ni Carrion noong huling bumisita siya sa lalawigan tulad ng ilang taon nang nabinbing pagpapatapos sa Diagnostic Building ng provincial hospital ay natugunan na rin. Kamakailan ay naglaan ang tanggapan ng pangulo aniya ng 10-milyong piso para sa nasabing pangangailangan. Prayoridad rin ang kahilingan ng lalawigan na pondohan ang tuluyang rehabilitasyon ng ospital at ang pagpapatayo ng microbiology building na naghihintay na lamang ng panibagong pondo.

AIRPORT AT CAWIT PORT

Ang patuloy na pagsasagawa ng asphalt overlay sa mga may sirang bahagi ng Marinduque Airport na inaprubahan na ng DOTC ay mangangailangan na lamang ng lagda ng pangulo para agad na maisagawa, at ito ay kanyang tututukan pagbalik sa Maynila, aniya.

Nakikipag-ugnayan din ang kanyang tanggapan sa Philippine Ports Authority upang matugunan pa ang mga pangangailangan ng Cawit Port matapos itong maisaayos sa ilalim ng programa ng pangulo. Matatandaang sa programa ng pangulo ay lumitaw na ang Cawit Port ang pinakamahalagang karugtong ng lalawigan sa konsepto ng Strong Republic Nautical Highway (Western Seaboard), at bahagi ng Luzon Urban Beltway project.

Ang mungkahi aniya ng lalawigan na magpagawa ng breakwater structure sa Cawit upang ito ay maging isang all-weather port ay hindi kaagad matutugunan dahil sa mas malaking halagang kinakailangan para ito maisakatuparan. Inihayag naman ni Carrion na may commitment na ang isang foreign government base sa pakikipag-ugnayan ng kaniyang tanggapan para ito tuluyang mangyari.

Iminungkahi din ni De Castro ang pagsusumite sa kanyang tanggapan ng ilan pang kahilingan mula sa ilan pa na mga bayang naghahangad na maisama sa ports development program ng national government ang kanilang mga daungan. Si De Castro ang tumatayong Cabinet Officer for Regional Development (CORD) para sa MIMAROPA Region.

PANDAIGDIGANG KRISIS

Tinalakay ni De Castro ang epekto ng kasalukuyang krisis pang-ekonomiya na bumabalot sa mga bansa sa Europa kasama na ang Estados Unidos at Japan na nagdulot aniya ng pagkawalan ng milyon-milyong hanapbuhay, gayundin ang mga bansa sa Asya. Ang Pilipinas sa kasalukuyan, aniya, ay malakas ang ginagawang pakikipaglaban upang hindi gaanong maramdaman sa bansa ang pandaigdigang krisis. Sa katunayan, aniya,ang Pilipinas ay nagtala ng 4.6% growth rate na mas mataas kaysa naitala ng South Korea (3.4%), Thailand (3.5%) at Singapore (3.7%).

Kung ang Estados Unidos aniya ay nawalan ng 3.6-milyong trabaho at ang China ay nawalan ng 20-milyong trabaho ang Pilipinas ay nakapagtala ng 530,000 na mga karagdagang trabaho. Nakatulong ng malaki, ani De Castro ang OFW remittances noong 2008 na umabot sa 16.43-bilyong dolyar, pinakamataas sa kasaysayan.

PGMA PROJECTS AT GLORIA SCHOLARSHIPS

Ipinaalam din ni De Castro na ilan sa mga ipinapatupad na PGMA projects sa Marinduque ay ang Integrated Services for Livelihood Advancement of Fisherfolk (ISLA) sa bayan ng Sta. Cruz para sa isang mariculture project para sa 70 mangingisda (P 345,000), Tulong Pangkabuhayan para sa Ating Disadvantaged Workers (TUPAD) sa 120 katao (P 309,000), isang Comprehensive Product Development Program for OTOP na ipinapatupad ng DTI (P 350,000), Integrated SME Development Program, pagtatalaga ng P 21.9-million para sa mga school buildings. Para naman aniya sa mga proyektong ipinapatupad ng Department of Agriculture para sa MIMAROPA region kasama na ang Marinduque ay ipinapatupad ang mga programa para sa organic fertilizer production at GMA fisheries projects.

Sa usaping pangturismo ay patuloy aniya ang isinasagawang Tourism Promotion and Marketing, Tourism Development Service at Tourism Classification Services na isinasagawa ng Department of Tourism.
Ibinunyag din ni De Castro na patuloy ang pagpapatupad ng TESDA ng Gloria Scholarships program sa Marinduque kung saan libo-libo na ang nabiyayaang beneficiaries na may edad 15 hanggang 24 taong gulang, ang pinakamalaking bahagi ng populasyon na walang hanapbuhay. Pakay ng TESDA na umabot sa 566,000 scholars sa buong bansa ang madaragdag sa scholarship program na nabanggit.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Udaipur, City of Lakes and more

Apart from the City Place, this city has lot more to offer. There are beautiful temples and parks that are worth a visit.

Lake Palace

Lake Palace is one of the most beautiful places. The Palace situated amidst the scenic Pichola Lake. It was constructed by Maharana Jai Singh II in 1746. Raised in white marble, the magnificent palace stretches across four-acre island. Other name of this palace is Jag Niwas named after the King.


The wonderful architecture of the Lake Palace comprises of may courtyards. Each of these courtyards are aligned with numerous columns, terraces. The palace has many beautiful fountains and well laid gardens. The palace has several beautiful rooms by the name of Bada Mahal, Khush Mahal, Ajjan Niwas, Phool Mahal and Dhola Mahal. These exotic rooms are decked with carved arches, paintings, crystal work, stained glass work, inland stones of pink and green lotus leaves.

Currently, this palace has been transformed into a five-star hotel that is managed by Taj Group of Hotels. Special thankls to my friend Raghu for this picture. When we had visited the place there was not much water in the lake. He had clicked this snap on his earlier visit.


Jagadish Temple

The temple is located 150mtr north of the entrance to the City Palace. It is built in Indo-Aryan architecture and is the largest temple in the city. The temple was built by Maharana Jagat Singh in 1651.

To reach the temple one has to climb 32 marble steps and at the top the entrance is guarded by 2 huge stone elephants. Right at the entrance of the temple there is a stone slab with the inscriptions with reference Maharana Jagat Sing. At the entrance of main shrine one can see a brass image of Garuda. In the main shrine there is a huge black stone idol of Vishnu with 4 arms. This idol is carved out of single piece of black stone. At the four corners of the main shrine there are 4 smaller shrines dedicated to Lord Ganesha, Sun God, Goddess Shakti and Lord Shiva. which is a image in black stone.

It is a three-storied temple with marvelous architecture comprising of beautifully carved pillars, decorated ceilings, painted walls. The shikar of the temple is decorated with sculptures of dancers, musicians and various animals such as elephants and horsemen.

Sajjan Niwas Garden

This city is famous not only for lakes, but also gardens. There are lot of gardens in the city and we had time to visit only one of such garden.

It occupied around 100 acres of land and this garden famous for the roses. For the same it is also known as rose garden.

From Udaipur we traveled to Jaipur, the Pink City.

Distance:
Udaipur ---> Jaipur 405 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.

Impala Facts


Latin Name: Aepyceros melampus

Lifespan: Up to 12 years.

Weight: Mature males 65 kg, females 40 kg.

Sexual differentiation:
The male is larger than the female and has horns.

Habitat:
Impalas are found in savannah, grassland and woodland biomes, often taking shelter under trees and in rocky areas.

Diet and Feeding:
Impala are predominantly grazers but will browse in the drier months if palatable grasses are less in abundance.

Reproduction and Territoriality:


Herding and breeding takes place in autumn. The dominant male herds as many females as possible into his territory with as many as 100 females or even more.

He defends his territory vigorously by chasing out any males he sees as a possible threat to his breeding herd, the threat being the possible loss of any sexually mature females to another male.

Bachelor herds follow the breeding herd within close proximity with eager males often breaking away to challenge the dominant male for ownership of the breeding herd.

Serious encounters between males may result in rutting which normally ends with the one or the other submitting by running away from the stronger, fitter ram.
Rutting between males may become intense with horns breaking off and rarely but not uncommon, death from piercing horns.

In a single breeding season up to 4 different males may dominate the same breeding herd at different periods.

The dominant male advertises his presence vocally by a series of vocalisations including grunting, snorting and roaring. He also scent-marks his territory by leaving fresh and regular deposits of dung on territory markers called “middens”. The number of middens will vary in number and are found throughout his territory with the more regularly marked middens found along the territory boundaries.

He also scent-marks by rubbing secretions of fluid from his face onto twigs and grasses.

The male regularly tests the reproductive status of females within the breeding herd by tasting their urine.

A small pit found in the males’ upper pallet leads to an organ known as the “Organ of Jacobson”. After licking the females urine, particles of urine are passed from the males tongue into the upper pallet pit then through to the Organ of Jacobson. This organ tests the urine and then sends a signal to the males’ brain to inform him of the reproductive status of the female.

After a successful copulation the female goes through a 7 month gestation period and gives birth to a single lamb, very rarely having twins.

Interesting Facts on the Impala:

•Females that have an excess level of testosterone have been known to grow horns. The horns however may grow disproportionately.

•A pregnant female is capable of extending her gestation period by up to 2 weeks if the start of the summer rains are late, which will result in poor grazing value and thus poor nutritional value of her milk produced.

•An impala can jump as far as 12 meters and as high as 3 meters!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Wonju Gangwong Chiaksan Mountain Nightlife

Wonju (원주시) is the largest city in Gangwong Province, South Korea. Wonju is a city approximately 90 miles east of Seoul. The population as of 2004 was 286,136. Wonju is famous for its three major universities such as : Wonju National College, Sangji Youngseo College, and Sangji University.

Wonju city tourism cannot be seperated from Mountains. Mountains within the city include the peaks of Namdaebong (남대봉, 1,182m) and Birobong (1,288 m) of the mountain Chiaksan.

Wonju Nightlife :

Rodeo Street in downtown is a popular nightlife area with lots of bars to choose from. Rodeo Street (로데오거리) is the name of at least six streets popular for nightlife.


Wonju City Photos

Wonju Chiaksan Mountain
Chiaksan National Park Mountains. Located on the southern end of the Charyeong Mountain Range and centered on the 1,288 Birobong (summit), Namdaebong, Hyangnobong and other high summits scrape the skies and is a tourist favorite for hikers.


wonju rodeo
Wonju Rodeo famous for its nightlife


wonju downtown
Wonju Downtown


Watch Snow from Seoul-Wonju train near Yangpyeong, South Korea video here



Watch Snow from Seoul-Wonju train near Yangpyeong, South Korea video here

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Melkote Temples

Melkote (High or Superior Fort) is located in Mandya district of Karnataka state in India. It is in a hilly area comprising of the oldest rock formations on the earth's crust. It is a a religious and a pilgrim center for Hindus, and is home for various famous temples and ponds. The origin of the town is lost in antiquity, but it rose to cultural and religious importance in the 12th century AD when the great philosopher and teacher, Sri Ramanuja lived in the town for twelve years.

Some of the well known temples of this place are:

Sri Cheluvanarayanaswamy Temple

This temple is located at the center of Melkote. The temple complex has a main unit consisting of a Garbhagraha and an Ardhamandapa, a narrow pillared corridor, a Mahamandapa and a small Mukhmandapa. There is a large courtyard surrounded by a prakara wall with a broad pillared closures on its inner and outer sides. The main area of temple where deity of Sri Cheluvanarayanaswamy is located is a very plain square building of large dimensions. The Utsavamurthi is a metallic image, representing the deity can also be seen here in this hall. According to a legend, this image was lost and was recovered by Sri Ramanujacharya. On the strength of epigraphical evidence, that the presiding deity of this temple was already a well known object of worship before Sri Ramanujacharya worshiped at the shrine.

In the narrow pillared corridor, the pillars are carved beautifully. The carvings on the pillar are very unique. No 2 pillars of the corridor are identical. The uniqueness of the each of pillars can be seen in the above snap.

In the above snap one can see beautifully carved sculpture Lord Ganesh on the pillar.

The timings at the temple are, 8.30am to 12.30pm,and 4.00pm to 8.30pm. During Saturdays and Sundays, the timings will be from 8.30am to 1.30pm. and 4.00pm to 8.30pm.

Sri Yoganarsimhaswamy Temple

This temple is located at the top of the hill. People can climb the steps from the ground level which is approximately 500 steps to the top. If not they can go by their light motor vehicles till the half way almost nearer to the temple. Still from here there are approximately 250 steps to the top.

The temple is at the height of 1777mtr from the mean sea level is a creation of Hoysala times with a beautiful image of seated Yoganarasimha with Yogapatta. A panoramic view of the surrounding vast area can be had from here. Thia is one of the 7 holy centres of Narsimha woorship. A huge drum donated by Tipu Sultan and a bell donated by the Mysore Parakalamatha can be seen here.

The timings at the temple are, 9.00am to 1.00pm and 5.30pm to 8.00pm. During Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays, the timings will be from 11.00am to 2.00pm and 5.00pm to 8.00pm.

Note Photography is strictly prohibited inside both the temples but people can carry their cameras along with them.

How to Reach There

This place is located interior to the Bangalore - Mysore 2 lane highway in the right side while going towards Mysore. Just after crossing Mandya one can see a road on the right and directions are available on highway. It is 37kms from this highway and from Bangalore it is around 130kms. The roads are very good and people do drive here at good speed.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Sweet La Casa Que Canta - Zihuatanejo Resort

travel hotel
zihuatanejo resort

Lijiang China Old Town City Nightlife

Lijiang City (丽江市) is a city in Yunnan Province China. The city has a 800 year history from as early as the late Song Dynasty. Lijiang has the best preserved ancient town in China - the Old Town which has been listed in the World Cultural Heritages by UNESCO in 1997. The Old Town was once the center of Lijiang and continues to maintain the original flavor of the local lifestyle, the typical groups of buildings and the profound cultural heritage of the region.

Lijiang Nightlife
Lijiang at night maybe limited if we compare to other China cities. Xinhua Street, which runs along the water in the Old Town, is famous for its bars. Among the popular watering holes here are Mama Fu Bar, Sangji Langmu Tibetan Bar, Naxi Pavilion Bar and Jing Zhuo Bar. Some of these are run by westerners. If you are interested in traditional music and dance, try the Naxi Concert Hall. Melodious Naxi music is performed every night from 20:00 to 21:30 by a group of local senior musicians who are typically more than 60 years old. The Hall is located at No.11 Jishan Valley, Xinyi Street in the Old Town.

Lijiang Main nightlife attractions including the live music :

1. Dongba Music Mountain&River Show

The Dongba Palace is also a famous place for Naxi traditional music. The newly built palace is decorated with typical Naxi religious symbols and ornaments which add a lot of character to the solemn cultural atmosphere.

The Don gba palace is located just opposite the Naxi Ancient Music Institute. There is a daily performance at 19:30. Besides Naxi music, the Dongba palace hosts various cultural activities on an irregular basis.


2. Lijiang International Ethnic Cultural Exchange Centre

The Mountain and River Show played in this centre attracts a great number of visitors every night.

This show is a comprehensive living theatre, including not only Naxi ancient music but also the traditional customs of other ethnic minorities living in Lijiang.


Lijiang Old Town, the only Chinese city listed on UNESCO's World Cultural Heritage list with a history of 1,300 years.
Lijiang Old Town

Lijiang Nightlife Shopping
Lijiang Nightlife Shop

Lijiang Nachi Orchestra
Lijiang Nachi Orchestra

Lijiang Naxi Ethnic Girl
Lijiang Naxi Girl