Sunday, February 24, 2013

Mount Kneisseh seen from Bois de Boulogne

Mount Lebanon is a Lebanese mountain range, averaging above 2,200 meters in height. Mount Kneisseh is part of the Mount Lebanon range.
The Bois de Boulogne is a park located in Paris. But Bois de Boulogne is also a village near Mount Lebanon.

Lebanese singer Nouhad Wadi Haddad, known as Fayrouz (1935). The Jewel of Lebanon.

A postcard from the West Indies: Port of Spain, Trinidad

Port of Spain is the capital of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. With 51,000 inhabitants it’s the largest city. Thanks in large part to its fine natural harbour, Port of Spain was made Trinidad's capital in 1757. 

Cruise ships dock is right next to Port of Spain's downtown, which has an urban feel, with skyscrapers, a financial center, arcade malls and debilitating rush-hour traffic. 

From a set of 5 stamps about local herbal medicine: Vervine.

Vervine is found in many parts of the Americas and the Caribbean. In Jamaica vervine is used for nervous disorders, as an eye tonic and to clean wounds. In the Eastern Caribbean vervine is used for colds, fevers, and worms.

Dragon Boat Racing in Macau

Macau is a former Portugese colony in China. Since 1999 Macau is one of the two special administrative regions of the People's Republic of China, the other being Hong Kong.

Dragon boat is a human-powered boat (Paddled Water Craft) traditionally made of teak wood to various designs and sizes. It is one of a family of Traditional Long Boats found throughout Asia, Africa and the Pacific Islands. It is now used in the team paddling sport of dragon boat racing.


Henrique de Senna Fernandes (1923 – 2010) was a writer from Macau.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Sauti za Busara musicfestival, Zanzibar

In the Swahili world, the big daddy of music festivals is Zanzibar's Sauti za Busara, meaning 'sounds of wisdom' An annual festival that takes place in Stone Town, Zanzibar, at the Old Fort.

Truly a cultural melting pot, with people coming in from all corners of Africa, Europe, Asia and America to attend. This year, the 10th edition took place from 14-17 February.

From a set of five stamps issued February 2012, picturing material culture: ‘a fiddle with calabash resonator’.

Terraced Rice Fields, China

The Longji Terraced Rice Fields are located 14 miles from Longsheng city. They are the most famous rice terraces in China. Construction started in the Yuan Dynasty (1279-1368) and the fields cover an area of over 16,300 acres and at its highest point is 3600 feet high.

Longji means Dragon’s Backbone. The Terraced Rice Fields received their name because the rice terraces resemble a dragon's scales, while the summit of the mountain range looks like the backbone of the dragon.
(right) The stamp is one out of a set of eight stamps about fish that live only in the South China Sea. 

Monday, February 18, 2013

Détente au bord du lac Tanganyika, Burundi

Lake Tanganyika is regarded as the second largest and second deepest freshwater lake in the world after Siberia’s Lake Baikal. Burundi, Tanzania, Democratic Republic of Congo and Zambia-all the four countries enjoy some parts of Lake Tanganyika.

Lake Tanganyika is not only a place for tourists. The surrounding areas of the lake are also developed for various economic activities like mining, livestock raising and agriculture. Fishery is also an important industry in Lake Tanganyika.

From a set of four stamps about monkeys.

Cape Velikan on Sakhalin Island Russia

Sakhalin is a large Russian island in the North Pacific. It is famous for its serenity, beauty and unique wildlife. The island also has large energy resources.

In the 19th century Sakhalin Island was the place of exile for prisoners sentenced to “katorga” (penal colony for hard labor). Sakhalin has been claimed by both Russia and Japan over the course of the 19th and 20th centuries. This has led to bitter disputes between the two countries over control of the island.

Russian Kremlins - Novgorod Kremlin

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Dromedary Camels from UAE

The UAE is historically known for its attachment to camels which are of social and economic value in the region. There are two types of camels. The dromedary, an Arabian camel, is a large even-toed ungulate with has one hump while the Asian camel has two humps.

Historically, camels in the UAE were a dependable source of not only transport but also food and milk. Camel skin is used locally to make shoes, bags and water containers. Its wool, which is commonly considered of high quality, was commonly used in the Arab world for tent and rug-making, besides being fashioned into clothes.

Nowadays the camel is essentially used for racing that is held annually during the winter months.

Falconry is an integral part of desert life which has been practiced in the UAE for centuries. Originally, falcons were used for hunting, to supplement the Bedouin diet with some meat

Fraser Island

Fraser Island is an island located along the southern coast of Queensland, Australia. The island has rainforests, eucalyptus woodland, mangrove forests, wallum and peat swamps, sand dunes and coastal heaths. It is made up of sand that has been accumulating for approximately 750,000 years on volcanic bedrock.

Fraser Island stretches over 123 kilometres in length and 22 kilometres at its widest point. It is the largest sand island in the world. Fraser Island is the only place in the world where tall rainforests are found growing on sand dunes at elevations of over 200 metres. 

On the far right: The Christmas Island Lunar New Year - Year of the Snake stamp. 

Saturday, February 9, 2013

The smallest republic in the world: Nauru

Nauru  is an island country in Micronesia in the South Pacific. Nauru is the world's smallest republic, covering just 21 square kilometers. With approximately 10,000 residents, it is the second least-populated country after Vatican City.

Nauru has no armed forces; Australia is responsible for Nauru's defense. Nauru uses the Australian dollar as its official currency.  

Nauru is a phosphate rock island with rich deposits near the surface, which allow easy strip mining operations. This tiny island generated enormous wealth from phosphates. In the 1980s, it had one of the highest per capita incomes in the world, but the phosphates are now close to exhaustion .

It is a postage prepaid postcard, picturing Nauru’s coat of arms. In the upper section of the shield the alchemical symbol of phosphorus is shown.

Maya ruins from Mexico: Chichen Itza

Chichen Itza is one of the most visited archaeological sites in Mexico; an estimated 1.2 million tourists visit the ruins every year.

Chichen Itza was founded in the 6th century (around 550 AD) by the Maya civilization, as a ceremonial center. The name is Mayan for “at the mouth of Itza’s well” and apparently comes from Itza, the name of an ethnic group very powerful at that time.

The Kukulkan Pyramid in Chichen-Itza was elected one of the seven wonders of the world in 2007.

20th Anniversary of Consejos Escolares (School Council)

Friday, February 8, 2013

Visoki Decani Monastery, Serbia (Kosovo region)

Visoki Dečani is a major Serbian Orthodox Christian monastery located in Metohia (Kosovo). Probably the best preserved medieval church in the Balkans, containing the most extensive preserved fresco decoration.

Nestled in the embrace of western Kosovo’s Decan Canyon, surrounded by grapevines and chestnut trees, the abbey is a two hour’s drive from the capital Pristina.


Sukhothai Historical Park, Thailand

The Sukhothai Historical Park covers the ruins of Sukhothai, capital of the Sukhothai kingdom in the 13th and 14th centuries, located in what is now the north of Thailand.

Wat Mahathat is the most important and impressive temple compound in Sukhothai Historical Park. 'Wat Mahathat' translates as 'temple of the great relic' and many Thai cities have a Wat Mahathat, where relics of the Buddha were kept.

From a set of 10 stamps about tourist spots: Thale Waek meaning Separated Sea. During the lowest tide of the day, the sea is gradually separated by the white sand and limestone beach that will appear to connect two islands.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

A postcard from The Gambia

The Gambia also commonly known as Gambia, is a country in West Africa. It is almost completely surrounded by Senegal. It is the smallest country on mainland Africa.
The country is named after the river Gambia which flows through its length from East to West for three hundred miles and empties into the Atlantic Ocean.

(picture left)
The Kankurang is an initiatory rite practiced throughout the Manding provinces of Senegal and Gambia. The central character in the Kankurang, is an initiate who wears a mask made of the bark and red fibre of the faara tree and is clothed in leaves, his body painted with vegetable dyes.
(picture upper right)
The Tanji fishing village is the biggest fishing village in the Gambia with many species of fish caught by the fisher men.

(picture lower right)
Kotu is one of the Gambia's most beautiful beaches 

The kora is a 21 string West African harp lute traditionally played by hereditary storytellers of the Mandinka as a musical accompaniment to their epic tales. 

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Martyrs' Square, Beirut

Martyr's Square has a very rich history. Few statues in the world had witnessed a country history the way the Martyr square and statue did in Beirut.  You can read more about the square in this post:

In the back you see the Rivoli Cinema.  Did you know that in the late 1950s and early 1960s the Lebanese were considered to be the foremost cinemagoers in the world? UNESCO’s 1965 annual report “Facts and Figures” reveals that Lebanese cinema attendance reached its peak in 1960 when Lebanon was rated the second in the world with each Lebanese buying an average of 22.5 tickets per annum!
(left) The main post office building in Beirut.
(middle) From a series of 10 stamps with different themes, Civil Defence.
(right) A stamp to celebrate Pope Benedict XVI’s visit to Lebanon in September 2012.

مسجد الحسن الثاني ‎Mosque Hassan II Casablanca

The Hassan II Mosque is a mosque in Casablanca, Morocco. It is the largest mosque in the country and the 7th largest in the world.

King Hassan II stated (on his birthday in 1980) his desire for the city to "be endowed with a large, fine building of which it can be proud until the end of time."

Thirteen years later, he inaugurated the Hassan II Mosque. Built on a rocky outcrop of reclaimed land -- in response to Hassan II's translation of the Koranic verse that proclaims God's throne was built upon water -- the mosque is a truly marvelous piece of architecture. 

King Hassan II was King of Morocco from 1961 until his death in 1999.


Mohammed VI (21 August 1963) is the present King of Morocco.

Bliss Lighthouse, Belize City Harbour

This light was built as a memorial to Henry E.E.V. Bliss, an English baron who was a major benefactor of Belize.  

On March 9th 1926, two months after his arrival in Belize and without ever having set foot on Belizean soil, Baron Bliss died, leaving Belize a $2 million legacy. The interest from his legacy was used to fund many infrastructural projects throughout Belize including roads, schools and the country’s first theatre.

A 2012 issue to celebrate the sixty year reign of Queen Elizabeth II. Belize is part of The Commonwealth, a voluntary association of 54 independent countries, almost all of which were formerly under British rule. 

Easter Island | Isla de Pascua

Easter Island covers roughly 64 square miles in the South Pacific Ocean, and is located some 2,300 miles from Chile's west coast and 2,500 miles east of Tahiti. Easter Island is one of the most remote inhabited islands in the world.

Known as Rapa Nui to its earliest inhabitants, the island was christened Paaseiland, or Easter Island, by Dutch explorer Jacob Roggeveen in honor of the day of their arrival in 1722. Easter Island is world-famous for the 887 large stone statues, or moai.



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