Friday, January 31, 2014

Illimani mountain, Bolivia

The mountain Illimani overlooks the city of La Paz, capital of Boliva. The mountain itself has many peaks that are permanently snow capped; three of them are above 6000m and the highest reaches an astounding altitude of 6.438m.

2013 Christmas stamp

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Nyakazu (or the fault of the Germans) | Burundi

Nyakazu Natural reserve is located in Burundi. A massive gorge like scenery with several hundred metres high cliffs, very close to the border to Tanzania.

In 1914, at the beginning of the First World War, Nyakazu was a German military post built for controlling the eastern part of the country to Tanzania. There can actually still be found some remainders of a German fortification.

Nyakazu fault is a site on the Unesco WHS Tentative list.

Part of a set of 4 stamps about frogs. The Kivu Tree Frog occurs in the highlands of eastern DR Congo, Rwanda, Burundi and Uganda.

Thx for sending my friend!

Friday, January 24, 2014

East Ninepin Island | 九針群島

Kwo Chau islands, also known as the Ninepin Group, are located to the east of Hong Kong island. There are three main islands and 29 small islands. The three main islands are South Ninepin Island, North Ninepin Island and East Ninepin Island. They look like nine pins from the sky. The name "Ninepin" is inspired by an old British game similar to modern day bowling.

Located in the open sea the islands are subject to the relentless impact of strong wind and waves, resulting in diverse peculiar coastal landforms, including steep cliffs, sea arches and various strangely-shaped rocks.

2006 bird-definitives: the White-bellied Sea Eagle and a Scarlet Minivet. The other stamp is part of a set of four stamps with topic Hong Kong festivals (issued 2012).

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Wrangel Island

Wrangel Island is an uninhabited island off the northern coast of far eastern Siberia. It's 37 miles from the nearest island and 87 miles from the Russian mainland. Wrangel Island, together with Herald Island and surrounding waters, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  
Wrangel Island Reserve is home to many polar bears, seals, walrus and lemmings. During the summer it is visited by many types of birds including the endangered  Snow Goose. And did you know that until about 4,000 years ago Wrangel Island supported the world's last mammoth population?

(right) Part of a set of four stamps about Russian Uniforms. 

Friday, January 17, 2014

The map of Tanzania

Tanzania is located in East Africa. The country is bordered by Uganda, Kenya, Burundi, Rwanda, DR Congo, Mozambique, Zambia and Malawi.
Arab traders first began to colonize the area in 700. Portuguese explorers reached the coastal regions in 1500 and held some control until the 17th century, when the sultan of Oman took power.

With what are now Burundi and Rwanda, Tanganyika became the colony of German East Africa in 1885. In 1964 Zanzibar, an island off the coast of Tanzania, and Tanganyika merged into a new country: Tanzania.  

The famous Mt. Kilimanjaro, the highest point of Tanzania, is located in the North. Dar es Salam was the capital of Tanzania but the city of Dodoma became the country's capital in 1973. 

Monday, January 13, 2014

Becharre | بْشَرِّيْ‎ a city near the Qadisha Valley in North Lebanon

Becharre is a town at an altitude of about 1,500 m located in the Qadisha Valley in northern Lebanon. The valley is known as the Holy Valley because of the number of monasteries, churches and hermit caves there.
The scenery is really dramatic, with all the townships clinging to the sides of the steep valley and the middle east’s tallest mountain, the snowcapped Cornet El-Saouda, towering overhead.

Becharre is the birthplace of the famous poet, painter and sculptor Khalil Gibran who now has a museum in the town to honor him.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Wilson's Arch, Jerusalem, Israel

The Wilson’s Arch in Jerusalem is is the modern name for an ancient stone arch that was part of a series of arches that supported a bridge that connected the Temple Mount and the Upper City. It was named after the British explorer Charles William Wilson, who identified the arch in 1864. 

Today Wilson’s Arch serves as a synagogue and contains many Torah Scrolls used for Bar-Mitzvah’s, weekday and Shabbat services. Wilson’s Arch is located near the Western Wall, also known as Wailing Wall, one of the holiest places for Jews.

In 2011 Israel issued a set of 6 stamps about butterflies of Israel. On the left a Swallowtail and on the right a Plain Tiger.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

The Church of the Nativity, Bethlehem, Palestinian Territories

The Church of the Nativity is marking the birthplace of Jesus Christ. The original basilica was built around A.D. 330 by the first Christian Roman Emperor Constantine. It was almost completely destroyed in A.D. 529 but soon after, rebuilt by the Byzantine Emperor Justinian. He rebuilt the church in a bigger, grander fashion, it is largely the structure that remains today.
The Grotto of the Nativity, a rectangular cavern beneath the church, is the church's central point. Entered by a flight of steps by the church altar, this is the cave that has been honored as the site of Christ's birth since at least the 2nd century.

The Church of the Nativity is a World Heritage Site, and was the first to be listed under Palestine.

In 1999 Palestinian Authority issued a set of 8 stamps themed Madonna and Child.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Imam Ali Mosque | حرم الإمام علي in Najaf, Iraq

The city of Najaf is located 161 km south of Baghdad. It is a site of great religious significance to Muslims being home of the sacred shrine of Imam Ali, cousin and son-in-law of Prophet Mohamed.

It was in nearby Kufa in 661 that Imam Ali, the son-in-law and cousin of the Prophet Mohamed, was badly wounded by an assassin and, as he lay dying, instructed his followers to strap his body to the back of a camel and, where the camel stopped, to dig his grave. On this spot grew up the shrine city of Najaf, a place of pilgrimage for the Shia.

Issued in 2012 as part of a set of four stamps picturing falcons.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Only for the brave: Kjeragbolten, Norway

The famous Kjerag boulder (Kjeragbolten) is a massive 5 m³ boulder wedged between two cliffs.

Without the help of any mountaineering equipment, brave visitors can walk on to the bolt – it is said to bring good luck. But think twice about looking down; the walls drop a 1,000 meters on both sides!

In 2011 Norway issued a set of three stamps about modern architecture and tourist destinations. This stamps pictures Pulpit Rock (Preikestolen) mountain lodge. 

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Flying Fish Cove, Christmas Island

Christmas Island, a territory of Australia, is a dot in the Indian Ocean. Its closest neighbor is Java, 360 km away. The island has a population of about 2,000. It is called Christmas Island because it was discovered on Christmas Day in 1643.

Flying Fish Cove is the main settlement of Australia's Christmas Island. It was the first British settlement on the island, established in 1888. The island is famous for the annual red crab mass migration to the sea to spawn.

Although Christmas Island was placed under Australian control in 1958, the island remained postally and philatelically independent until 1993 when Australia Post became the island's postal operator.

The island issued its own postage stamps from 1958. Those issued by Australia Post since 1993 are also valid in Australia, as are Australian stamps in Christmas Island.

(left) Christmas Island Fish - Cocos Angelfish, issued in 2013 as part of a set of four stamps.
(right)Christmas Island Christmas stamp: Merry Christmas Island, part of a set of two stamps issued 2013.
(bottom) Nature of Australia, Issue 2, Wetlands: the Saltwater Crocodile, issued in 1997. 

Friday, January 3, 2014

Tower Bridge, London

London is the capital city of the United Kingdom. With over 8,5 million inhabitants it is one of the largest cities in Europe.

Tower Bridge is a combined bascule and suspension bridge in London which crosses the River Thames. It is close to the Tower of London, from which it takes its name.

London Bridge was originally the only crossing for the Thames. But as London grew there was need for another major crossing over the Thames. So in 1876 it was decided to build a new bridge. Finally building started in 1886 and it took 8 years to complete it.

Thx Francis!


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