Saturday, August 31, 2013

Aruba Beach


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“The beaches in Aruba consistently rank among the best, not only in the Caribbean, but in the world. Enjoy miles of pristine white sand, crystal blue waters, and cooling trade winds.
       
Aruba’s beaches include wide shaded expanses, quiet retreats, and busy sunbathing and water sports meccas.”

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Alto Vista Chapel is a small Catholic chapel also known as "Pilgrims Church". 

Thursday, August 29, 2013

St John's, capital of Antigua and Barbuda


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St. John's is the capital and largest city of Antigua and Barbuda, a country located in the West Indies in the Caribbean Sea. Antigua is the main island.

St. John's Cathedral is an Anglican church. This is actually the second cathedral built on this location. The first was built of wood as early as 1681 but fell in disrepair and became too small. The second was constructed with English brick about 1720.

Stamps
A Tamarind tree and a Copperband Butterflyfish.

Thx Pat!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Montezuma beach, Costa Rica


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The beach town of Montezuma  is a popular destination amongst backpackers in Costa Rica.

Stamp
A machine label. 

Monday, August 26, 2013

Sunset at the island of Amrum


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The North Frisian Islands are a group of islands in the Wadden Sea, a part of the North Sea, off the western coast of Schleswig-Holstein, Germany. There are four larger islands and ten tiny islets. The names of the large islands are Sylt, Föhr, Amrum, and Pellworm.

Amrum has appromixately 2,300 inhabitants. Sand dunes are a characteristic part of Amrum’s landscape.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Paracel Islands | 西沙群岛


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The Paracel Islands are one of four big island groups in the South China Sea. The islands are known as Xisha in Chinese and as Hoàng Sa in Vietnamese. The Paracel Islands is a group of islands whose sovereignty is disputed among the People's Republic of China (PRC), Taiwan and Vietnam.  The archipelago is surrounded by productive fishing grounds and potential oil and gas reserves.
 
Stamps
China and New Zealand in 1997 jointly issued the stamps "Flowers" to promote the friendship between the two nations. The stamps picture a China Rose (left) and a New Zealand Monthly Rose (right).

Friday, August 23, 2013

Jerusalem in moonlight


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Israelis and Palestinians both claim Jerusalem as their capital. Israel designated Jerusalem as its capital in 1950, yet most countries maintain their embassies in Tel Aviv due to ongoing political debate with the Palestinians.

At Jerusalem’s heart is the Old City, which is surrounded by a wall and divided into four quarters - Jewish, Armenian, Christian, and Muslim. Inside the walls are the important holy sites of the three major religions: the Western Wall, which is holy to the Jews, the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, and the Dome of the Rock on the Temple Mount. 

The Dome of the Rock, whose golden roof has dominated the Temple Mount for centuries, is a 7th-century shrine. The rock refers to the Foundation Stone at the heart of the Dome. It is a holy place for Muslims.

Lavaux Vineyard Terraces, Switzerland


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The Lavaux is a region in the canton of Vaud in Switzerland. The Lavaux consist of 830 hectares of terraced wineyards that stretch for about 30 km along the south-facing northern shores of Lake Geneva.

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Europa 2013 stamp: The Postman’s Van 

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Village of Manarola, Cinque Terre, Italy


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The Cinque Terre is a rugged portion of coast on the Italian Riviera. The coastline, the five villages, and the surrounding hillsides are all part of the Cinque Terre National Park and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Manarola, built on a high rock 70 metres above sea level, is one of the most charming and romantic of the Cinque Terre villages.
Stamp
Primo Levi, 1919-1987 – 25th Anniversary of Death. Primo Michele Levi was an Italian Jewish chemist and writer. 

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Angra do Heroísmo, capital of the Azores


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Terceira is an island in the Portuguese autonomous region of the Azores, in the middle of the North Atlantic Ocean. With a population of 57,000 it is the third largest island of the archipelago. Located on this island is the capital of the Azores, Angra do Heroísmo. The historic city center is on the Unesco World Heritage list.

Stamps

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Maasai jumping dance, Tanzania

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The Maasai are semi-nomadic people located in Kenya and northern Tanzania. They own large herds of cattle, sheep and goats which they follow around seasonally in search of new grazing grounds and water sources.

The Maasai are famous for the “jumping dance” which is called adamu. It is performed when a circle is formed by the warriors, and one or two at a time will enter the center to begin jumping while maintaining a narrow posture, never letting their heels touch the ground.

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Zanzibar attractions Series II, Ngalawa sailing off the Jambian coast. The Ngalawa is a traditional, double-outrigger canoe of the Swahili people living in Zanzibar and the Tanzanian coast. 

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Fort Provintia in Tainan City, Taiwan

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Chihkan Tower, formerly known as Fort Provintia, in Tainan City was built in 1653 by the Dutch during their colonization of Taiwan.

During the period of Dutch colonization from 1624 to 1662, Taiwan was known as Formosa. The Dutch East India Company established its presence on Taiwan/Formosa to trade with China and Japan.

Stamps
In 2012 Taiwan Post issued a set of 4 stamps depicting protected mammal species. From left to right: the masked palm civet, a Taiwan weasel, a Formosan Yellow-throated Marten and a Small Indian civet.

Monday, August 12, 2013

The magnificent scenery of the Li River

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The Lijiang or Li river is located in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, China. It is quite easy to see why Huangbu Shoal attracts many tourists and photographers each year.

There are seven green Karst peaks to be seen. A legend goes that the seven peaks are fairy girls from heaven who took baths in the river. Enthralled by the charming scene, they stayed here and become into the peaks.


Sunday, August 11, 2013

Qibao Ancient Town, Shanghai

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Qibao Ancient Town is one of the oldest and most famous towns in Shanghai. The town was built in the Five Dynasties Period about 1,000 years ago. The town is crossed by two water lanes. Around the water lanes stand a large number of well preserved traditional houses, gardens, temples, shops and restaurants which define the very character of the place. 

With a population of 25 million, Shanghai is the largest city in China. Imagine this tranquil place is located only 15 kilometers from downtown Shanghai.    

Stamps

In 1998 China issued four stamps about Architecture of Dai Nationality. The stamps depict a Pagoda (left) and a Pavilion (right). The Dai Nationality is one of the 56 ethnic groups officially recognized by China. They live in the Dai Autonomous Prefectures in Yunnan Province.  

Saturday, August 10, 2013

The Forbidden City, Beijing, China

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Tiananmen Square is a large city square in the center of Beijing, China. It is the third largest city square in the World and main gate to the Forbidden City, the imperial palace for twenty-four emperors during the Ming and Qing dynasties. It was forbidden to enter without special permission of the emperor.

The Meridian Gate is the main gate to the Forbidden City. Everyone who entered the Forbidden City in the old days had to observe the strict rules concerning the total five doors of the Meridian Gate. The central doorway was for the exclusive use of the emperor. However, an empress was granted the privilege of using this opening once, and only once, on her wedding day.

Stamps
(left) One World One Dream - 2008 Beijing Olympic special sheet: boxing
(middle) Protected wildlife, the Brown Eared Pheasant (Crossoptilon mantchuricum)

Friday, August 9, 2013

A postcard from Laos

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Laos is a landlocked nation in Southeast Asia located in the center of Indochina, sharing borders with China, Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam.

Vang Vieng is a tourism-oriented town; Laos’ backpackers capital. The town is surrounded by a picturesque Karst hill landscape. Karst is a geologic term for a landscape shaped by the dissolution of a layer or layers of soluble bedrock. Limestone and gypsum are typical materials that makeup these kinds of formations. They dissolve easily in water. 


Thursday, August 8, 2013

A market in Funchal, Madeira

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Funchal is the capital and main city in Portugal's Autonomous Region of Madeira. More and more new shopping centers and supermarkets are opened all over the island of Madeira to satisfy the consumers' 'needs'. Yet, there's nothing like the ambience of a typical market!

Originally, these regional markets were set up for selling flowers but with the time they expanded to all kinds of agricultural products and local food specialties, such as ‘bolo de caco’ bread, grilled chicken and wheat soup, to be consumed there or to take away.  
(source: http://www.madeira-web.com)

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Island of the Sleeping Lady, Micronesia

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Micronesia, also known as the Federated States of Micronesia, is a beautiful island nation in the north-western Pacific Ocean. It is located somewhere between Guam and Hawaii. Meaning "small islands", Micronesia is spread over 3 million miles of the Pacific and includes over 2000 islands. The population is around 90,000.

Kosrae is the second largest island in Micronesia and covers an area of only 110 km2. It is located hundreds of miles from its nearest neighboring island. The island is also known as “Island of the sleeping lady”.
Stamps
(right) To commemorate Albert Einsteins 50th year of death.

Kuala Lumpur, capital of Malaysia

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Kuala Lumpur is the capital and most populous city in Malaysia. Petronas Towers, a pair of skyscraper office buildings in the heart of Kuala Lumpur, that are among the world’s tallest buildings with a height of 450 metres. The Twin Towers were built to house the headquarters of Petronas, the national petroleum company of Malaysia.

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Malaysia Post issued a set of four stamps on 25 July, 2013 featuring traditional Malaysian salads. This stamp pictures Kacang Botor.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Caracas, capital of Venezuela

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Caracas, is the capital and largest city of Venezuela. The official name is Santiago de León de Caracas. The tallest buildings of Venezuela are located in the Parque Central Complex.

Stamps
2011 Stamps, Supreme Court Justice, Stained Glass; 3 stamps out of a sheet of 10. 

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Mozambique

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Mozambique is a country in Southeast Africa bordered by Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Swaziland and South Africa. The capital and largest city is Maputo.  

Mozambique is one of Africa’s up-and-coming hot-spots, with stunning beaches, excellent diving and magical offshore islands.

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Televisão de Moçambique is the national public broadcaster of Mozambique. The station was launched in 1981. In 2011 it celebrated its 30 years anniversary. 

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Prince Edward Island

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Prince Edward Island (PEI)  is a Canadian province consisting of an island of the same name, as well as some other islands. The City of Charlottetown is located on the south shore of Prince Edward Island. Charlottetown is the capital city of Prince Edward Island.

The smallest province in Canada, Prince Edward Island is famous for red sand beaches, red soil, potatoes, and the irrepressible Anne of Green Gables, a bestselling novel by Canadian author Lucy Maud Montgomery.

Friday, August 2, 2013

A postcard from São Tomé and Principe


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São Tomé and Príncipe is an island nation in the Gulf of Guinea, in western Africa. With a population of 185,000 São Tomé and Principe is Africa’s smallest country after Seychelles.

It consists of two archipelagos around the two main islands: São Tomé and Príncipe.

A century ago São Tomé and Príncipe was the leading cocoa beans producer of the world. Today it’s economy is still highly dependent on cocoa export. Half of it is exported to The Netherlands, the largest cacao importer in the world.




Principe Flycatcher-babbler is a species of bird endemic to São Tomé and Príncipe.

Stamps

Selous Game Reserve, Tanzania

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The Selous Game Reserve is one of the largest faunal reserves of the world, located in the south of Tanzania. It was named after Englishman Sir Frederick Selous, a famous big game hunter and early conservationist.
 
About four times the size of Serengeti, covering more than 5% of Tanzania's total area  , it is home to the largest concentration of elephants in the world. Selous Game Reserve is Unesco World Heritage Site since 1982.

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In May 2005 Tanzania post issued many stamps about Jules Verne (1828 - 1905), a French novelist, poet, and playwright best known for his adventure novels and science fiction. Mistress Branican is one of his adventure novels. 

Thursday, August 1, 2013

The Bernina Express, Switzerland

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The Bernina Express is a train connecting Switzerland with Italy by crossing the Swiss Alps. For most of its journey, the train also passes along and through the World Heritage Site known as the Rhaetian Railway.

With its 196 bridges and viaducts, 55 tunnels and 128 km of track, the railway is a miracle of technology – an achievement that, even a hundred years after it was built, continues to fascinate. It is the highest altitude transalpine railway in Europe and one of the steepest adhesion railways in the world.

The postcard pictures Wiesen Viaduct, spanning the Landwasser River. The viaduct is 88 metres (289 ft) high and 204 metres (669 ft) long.

Stamp
Vegetable Blossoms – Tomato (issued 2012)

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