Friday, July 29, 2011

Table Mountain is Cape Town’s most famous landmark and one of the city’s greatest attractions. There are many scenic routes that can be taken to climb the 1,086-m mountain, but most people take the revolving cable car, which whisks them to the top in just a few minutes. At the summit, the views from all directions are magnificent, especially on a clear day, although the fog can descend at any time from seemingly out of nowhere. Legend has it that an old Afrikaaner pirate, Jan van Hunks, who lived on Devil’s Peak, challenged the devil to a pipe-smoking contest. The devil lost and the fabled ‘tablecloth’ cloud is said to serve as a reminder of his defeat.

Despite its location, virtually in the middle of the city of Cape Town, the mountain is home to a remarkably unspoiled wilderness and nature reserve. Wooden walkways and other designated paths allow you to wander around without damaging the 2,200 unique species of plants, while still affording you views of the grysboks, baboons and dassies, which resemble a cross between a giant guinea, pig and rabbit. Curiously, these funny little creatures are more closely related to elephants than any other species.

Table Mountains is truly a spectacular geological asset to Cape Town, the fabulously cosmopolitan city in south-western Africa.

Friday, July 22, 2011

The wonders of Sri Lanka can also be seen in the kind of a natural and wonderfully crafted art called the Polonnaruwa which is found in Sri Lanka.

The city is known for its unique irrigation system, Lake Parakrama which is a man-made irrigation tank. IT was built by Parakramabahu I which is now the most striking features of Polonnurawa.

On the other hand, the Royal Citadel that houses Parkramabahu's palace and administratibe buildings. It is an impressive building with elaborate stone carvings. Outside the walls lies the Royal Bath, or Lotus Bath. It is made of stone and reached by stairs. It has a small pavilion once used as a changing room.

Gal Vihara, a Buddhist shrine contains intricately carved and well-preserved standing and reclining statues of Buddha. Hatadage which is another important shrine was built by Parakramabahu I to house the Sacred Tooth.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Band-e Amir

In Band-e Amir, you will find six stunning blue lakes which nestled among magenta and grey rock walls, making a stunningly beautifully and unforgettable contrast. The deep blue of the lakes is due to the combination of water purity and the high lime content.

The lakes in Band-e Amir Valley are considered one of the country's natural wonders. The lakes are created by the flow of water of a succession of natural travertine terraces created through the deposition of calcuim carbonate, running from the highest lake to down below. The strikingly clear cobalt waters come as a shock to the senses amid this barren and rocky desert landscape.

Although there is no lush foliage, there is a variety of animal species. Wolves, foxes, hares and wild sheep and Markhor goats as well as large yellow fish, known locally as Chush are found in and around the lakes. Mules and donkeys, commonly used by locals for transport, can also be seen in the area.

Band-e Amir was declared a national park, the first in Afghanistan, although it has no legal status.

Friday, July 15, 2011

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Monument Valley is an area of sandstone rock formations rising majestically up to 300 m form the desert floor, providing one of the most enduring images of the American West. These isolated red mesas and buttes, surrounded by cast, empty desert, have been filmed and photographed countless times, giving the visitor a sense of familiarity, but once in the valley you cannot fail to be amazed at the true vivid, deep, rich colour palette of this otherworldly landscape.

Lying entirely within the Navajo Indian Reservation near the south-eastern corner of Utah, the most famous landmarks are concentrated around the small town of Goulding. This isolated settlement, 250 meters from the nearest city - Flagstaff, Arizona - was established in 1923 as an Indian trading post, and is now home to a comprehensive range of visitor services.

The view from the visitor centre is spectacular enough, nut the majority of the park can only be seen from the Valley Drive, a 27-km road. Winding among the magical towering cliffs and mesas including The Totem Pole, a stunning 91-m rock spire only a few metres wide. As well as eroded rocks, this area is also home to a series of ancient cave and cliff dwellings, natural arches and petroglyphs.

Not a valley in the conventional sense, Monument Valley is actually a wide flat, desolate landscape, interrupted by the crumbling formations, the final remnants of the sandstone layers that once covered the entire region. Monument Valley is the quintessential spectucular, breathtaking Wild West.

Friday, July 8, 2011

This guest post from Edgardo Rosa

Every afternoon when I get home from work I do the same thing. I walk in the door, go to the bedroom, and change out of my work clothes into my comfortable sweats. I then make a cup of green tea, grab a healthy snack, and sink into the couch in front of the television. Now I am ready to watch "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" on my satellite TV( This is my favorite talk show. Ellen is so funny and can always make me laugh no matter what type of day I had at work. Her dancing style is fun and I am often amazed how she can still look cool dancing up a flight of stairs. I enjoy how she likes to give personalized gifts to her guests related to their family or hobbies. That seems so thoughtful. I also think it is great how Ellen brings on people from YouTube videos and gives them a chance to shine on her stage. This has lead to job offers for some of her guests. She also likes to reach out to individuals and families who are suffering or struggling. Ellen seems to get a lot of joy using her fame and power to bless these people with financial help or a new car or a dream vacation. She seems like genuinely thoughtful person!