Saturday, December 28, 2013

Brimstone Hill Fortress, St Kitts

Saint Kitts is an island in the West Indies (the Caribbean). Saint Kitts and the neighboring island of Nevis constitute one country. The islands are located between the tiny island of Sint Eustatius and Montserrat. The capital of St Kitts is Basseterre and it has a population of 44,000.    

Brimstone Hill Fortress National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is one of the best preserved historical fortifications in the Americas.

A Christmas stamp, probably issued 2013 but couldn’t find it on the www. 

Friday, December 27, 2013

A postcard from the Dutch Carribbean: Bonaire

The island of Bonaire is located in the Caribbean, about  50 miles north of Venezuela and 86 miles east of Aruba. The population is only 17,500. 

Bonaire's economy is mainly based on tourism, it is a well known scuba diving location. Together with Sint Eustatius and Saba, Bonaire is a special municipality of the Netherlands.

Kralendijk, which means "coral dike", is the capital city and main port of the island. This is where you'll find the vast majority of the island's restaurants, businesses, traffic and shopping.

Issued in 2012 as part of a set of four stamps about Sailing Ships. The Optimist is a small, single-handed sailing dinghy intended for use by children up to the age of 15.  

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Season's Greetings from Nauru

This card I received already in May but I thought that this day would be the appropriate day to post it here.

Merry Christmas to you all!

Part of a set of 12 definitives, issued in 1991. 

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Novice Monks in Myanmar/Burma

Myanmar is one of the most devout Buddhist countries in the world. About 90% of the people in Myanmar are Buddhist. It is estimated that about half a million monks live in Myanmar.

Men are supposed to enter the monkhood twice in their lives, once as a novice aged between 10 and 20, and once as a fully ordained monk any time after their 20th birthday. Often the young novices start their monastic life at the age of nine or ten.

A stamp to honor the 27th SEA Games, hosted by Myanmar from 11 to 22 Dec 2013. SEA stands for South East Asian.

Thx Emillin!

Monday, December 23, 2013

Po Win Taung Caves near Monywa, Myanmar (Burma)

Po Win Taung is a Buddhist cave complex located near the city of Monywa in Myanmar/Burma. The complex contains 947 small and large richly decorated caves. The caves are decorated with Buddhist statues and murals dating to the 17th and 18th centuries.

A stamp to honor the 27th SEA Games, hosted by Myanmar from 11 to 22 Dec 2013. SEA stands for South East Asian.

Thx Rod!

Sunday, December 22, 2013

The Tobago Cays, St Vincent and the Grenadines

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines is an island country located in the Carribean, near Barbados and St Lucia. The Population of the country is approximately 110,000. There are over 32 islands and cays that make up SVG; of these, nine are inhabited.
The Tobago Cays forms an intimate cluster of five small uninhabited cays. Picturing heavenly lagoons full of green turtles, coral reefs, colorful fishes and crystal clear waters. If the Grenadines archipelago were a necklace, the Tobago Cays would be its jeweled pendant.

(The fish-stamp:) The queen angelfish lives on coral reefs in the Western Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea.

Thx again Olga!

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Bridgetown, the capital of Barbados

Bridgetown is the capital and largest city of the nation of Barbados. Bridgetown is the only city on Barbados and well over half the island's residents live there. Barbados gained full independence from Britain in 1966 but retained its status as a Commonwealth country.
This historic city and its nearby Garrison are recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

East Point Lighthouse. One of a set of four lighthouse stamps, issued 2013.

Golden Apple. In 2011 Barbados issued a set of 16 definitives picturing local fruits.  

Thx for sending Olga!

Friday, December 20, 2013

A tree from Brasilia, capital of Brazil

Some time ago I received this card also picturing Brasilia, capital of Brazil. I like the contrast between the tree and the modern building in the backround.

The tree is known as the Pink Trumpet Tree, Pink Tecoma or Rosy trumpet tree. The tree is native to the American tropics and subtropics from Mexico and the Carribean to Argentina.

A matching stamp also picturing a Rosy trumpet tree. 

Thursday, December 19, 2013

JK Bridge, a postcard from Brasilia, the capital of Brazil

JK Bridge crosses Lake Paranoá in Brasília. It is named after Juscelino Kubitschek de Oliveira, former president of Brazil, who in the late 1950s decided to build Brasília as the new capital of the country.

Located in the central area of Brazil, the area that makes up Brasilia today resembled, a desert before 1960, with no people, scarce water, few animals and plants. This story made me think of another designed Capital: Astana.

Brasilia is one of the Host Cities for the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Ruins of Kilwa Kisiwani, Tanzania

The island of Kilwa Kisiwani is located in the south of Tanzania, a short boat ride from the mainland. It was once a thriving seaport; from the 11th century the sultans of Kilwa grew rich from control of the gold trade. 

At its height, in the 14th century, Kilwa Kisiwani was the single most important trading centre on the East African coast and its ruins include a number of mosques,  a well-preserved Omani fortress, graves, and the remnants of a Great Palace.  Together with the ruins of Songo Mnara, the ruins of Kilwa Kisiwani was declared a Unesco World Heritage site. 

Thx Steve!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Mapcard from Ghana

Kwame Nkrumah (1909-1972) was the first president of the Republic of Ghana. He was born in 1909, in Nkroful, Gold Coast (now Ghana). 

He shepherded the country in its struggle for independence from Great Britain. On 6 March 1957, Nkrumah declared Ghana independent. He was hailed as the Osagyefo - which means "redeemer" in the Twi language (Twi is a language spoken in most regions of Ghana).

Shallot Plants. I think this is one of the tiniest stamps I have ever seen. It is one out of a set of ten definitives picturing fruits and vegetables.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

A postcard from the Maldives: Maayaafushi Island

Maldives is an island nation in the Indian Ocean. The chain of 1190 little coral islands scattered across the Indian Ocean that forms the archipelago of the Maldives is 80 -120 km wide. Only 201 islands are inhabited by the local people, and 83 islands are developed exclusively as tourist resorts, while the rest are uninhabited.

Maayaafushi Island is one of the island developed into a tourist resort.

"Sun, sand and sea, a thousand 'Robinson Crusoe' islands, massive lagoons with different depths and infinite shades of blue and turquoise, dazzling underwater coral gardens; a perfect natural combination for the ideal tropical holiday destination." 

A stamp celebrating 40 years of China-Maldives diplomatic relations.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

A postcard from the West Indies: Saint Martin

Saint Martin is an overseas collectivity of France located in the Caribbean. The neighbor sharing the same island is Sint Maarten, a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

It is the smallest island in the world ever to have been partitioned between two different nations. The border is almost non-existent and people cross back and forth without ever realizing they are entering a new country. 

Princess Juliana International Airport serves both the Dutch and the French part of the island. It is named after crown princess Juliana of the Netherlands in 1944, the year after the airport opened. The airport is famous for its short landing strip which is barely enough for heavy jets. Because of this, the planes approach the island flying extremely low, right over Maho Beach.
It’s a spectacular sight!

Jacques Baumel (1918 – 2006), a French politician. The number 23980A on the cancellation is the code for Saint Martin. 

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Ancient Maya ruins in Belize part two: Altun Ha

In about one week I received two cards picturing Maya ruins in Belize. Both cards I didn’t expect to receive, sent by different persons. This one pictures Altun Ha, the ruins of an ancient Maya city.
Actually  this postcard was sent from the USA. The label reads “US postage paid Barstow, MD”.

According to Wikipedia, Barstow in Maryland is a very small ‘community’ with no residential structures. No one resides in Barstow, MD and the only building in Barstow is the Post Office. 

Mayan ruins in Belize: Lamanai

Belize was once the center of one of the greatest civilizations of antiquity and is considered to have been the heartland of the Maya civilization during the Classic period.

Lamanai is the name of a site with Mayan ruins, located in Northern Belize.

In 2013 the Pallottine sisters celebrated 100 years of service in Belize. The Pallottine Missionary Sisters were founded in 1838 by St. Vincent Pallotti in Rome, Italy. It is an international religious order serving in 19 countries. 

Thx Pat!

Monday, December 9, 2013

Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh

Dhaka is the capital and, with an estimated 15 million inhabitants, largest city of Bangladesh. It is one of the most densely populated cities in the world. With 400,000 cycle-rickshaws running on its streets every day, the city is described as the Rickshaw Capital of the World. 


Sunday, December 8, 2013

Monaco, the capital of ...Monaco

However very small with a population of only 36,000, MONACO  is a real country. A constitutional monarchy in the same vein as San Marino or the Vatican, a full member of the United Nations with its own royal family.

There is no geographical distinction between the State and City of Monaco." The capital of Monaco is Monaco, the country is a city and as such serves as its own capital. 

The city of Monaco is split up, like any other town, into several neighborhoods, one of them is MONTE-CARLO; the area on the hill overlooking the main harbor that houses the casino and the luxury hotels.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Astana, the capital of Kazakhstan

Astana, meaning Capital in Kazakh language, is the capital and the second largest city of Kazakhstan. But only 15 years ago the city didn't really exist at all. In 1997 Kazakhstan's President Nazarbayev moved the capital from Almaty to Astana.

Today the science fiction-like skyline has started to earn the country international recognition. On the right of the postcard you see the most famous landmark in Astana, the 105m tall Bayterek tower.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Kaledonia Falls, the highest waterfall in Cyprus

Kaledonia Waterfalls are located near Platres in the Troödos region. With (only) 15 metres the highest waterfalls in Cyprus. Platres is a mountainous village in Cyprus. It is located on the southern slopes of the Troödos Mountains. Please mind the lizzard sunbathing on the rocks.

Thx Steve!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Kfarhelda falls, Lebanon

Kfarhelda waterfall is located in North-Lebanon, about 80 kilometers from Beirut, the capital of Lebanon. 

Afqa Falls , Lebanon

Afqa is located in the mountains of Lebanon, about 20 kilometres from the ancient city of Byblos.
The waterfall at Afqa is the source for the River Adonis, known today as Abraham River.

In Greek mythology, Adonis, the god of beauty and desire, was born and died at the foot of the falls in Afqa.

Rafic Hariri (1944 –  2005) was a business tycoon and the Prime Minister of Lebanon from 1992 to 1998 and again from 2000 until his resignation in October 2004. Hariri was assassinated on 14 February 2005.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Pagsanjan Falls, Philippines

Pagsanjan Falls is one of the most famous waterfalls in the Philippines. Behind this waterfall you can find the Devil's Cave.

They named it devil's cave because of its structure that looks like a face of a devil.


The stamp on the right is part of a set of “Se-tenant Pairs. Unlike the rest of the Philippines which gained independence from the United States in 1946, Olongapo-city was governed as a part of the United States naval reservation. In 1959 the Americans turned it over to Philippine government. 

Nachi Falls, Japan

The Nachi Waterfall, with a drop of 133m, is one of the highest waterfalls in Japan. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site; it is part of the "Sacred Sites and Pilgrimage Routes in the Kii Mountain Range".

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Postojna Cave, 21 km of Stalactite Paradise

This is the second postcard that Igor sent me, picturing Postojna Cave in Slovenia.

Stalactite paradise on every corner
21 km of passages, galleries and magnificent halls offer a unique experience of the underground world. The Postojna cave is definitely one of the most diverse cave systems in the world.”

Posta Slovenije issued a joint commemorative block with Austria entitled “Postojna cave, cave post office 1899. On 15 August 1899, 500 meters from the entrance to the cave, the first underground post office in the world was opened. 

The Salamander-like creature on the cancellation is an Olm. It lives in caves like Postojna Cave.

140 Years of Postojna Cave Railway

Postojna Cave is a 20km long karst cave system near Postojna, Slovenia. It is one of the major tourist attractions in Slovenia, welcoming half a million visitors each year. Visitors are taken for a tour by a special cave train launched on 16 June 1872, celebrating its 140 years anniversary in 2012.

Igor was so kind to contact me and send me two Postojna Cave postcards. Thx Igor!

A matching stamp. On 15 August 1899 the first underground post office in the world was opened in Postojna Cave. 


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