неделя, 9 февруари 2014 г.

UZBEKISTAN. 1/4. Samarkand

Another fantastic postcard which adds to the previous one of Samarkand. What is special about it is that I received it from my swap friend Joerg from Germany and it's a photo of his which he printed as a postcard and sent from Germany.
Again, like the previous time that I got the other one blank from the ebay seller, it's not like the real thing - travelling directly from Uzbekistan, written and stamped. But without Joerg I wouldn't have managed to have it travelled at all! :)

Samarkand – Crossroad of Cultures

The historic town of Samarkand is a crossroad and melting pot of the world's cultures. Founded in the 7th century B.C. as ancient Afrasiab, Samarkand had its most significant development in the Timurid period from the 14th to the 15th centuries. The major monuments include the Registan Mosque and madrasas, Bibi-Khanum Mosque, the Shakhi-Zinda compound and the Gur-Emir ensemble, as well as Ulugh-Beg's Observatory.

PHILIPPINES. 2/5. Baroque churches - Miag-ao

Again thanks to my swap friend Jennifer!

Tentative. GERMANY. Schwetzingen


A postcard which obviously from the photos has sufferred a lot during the long journey. Just like Jerusalem itself. :)

Tentative. MALTA. Mdina

Thanks to my fellow Bulgarian Valya :)

Tentative. TURKEY. Pergamon

Thanks to my mother-in-law and her sister I've got these fantastic postcards! :)

ITALY. 5/49. Venice

Posted from Netherlands, a postcard depicting the famous festival in Venice and one of the notable buildings in the city.
I hope that the recent restrictions of big cruise ships entering the lagoon would help preventing the city from sinking.. I don't mind cruises, I love them, but I wouldn't visit a place with the full awareness that my entrance to the place damages it almost irreversibly. I'd rather use the old-style of planes or buses or cars... 

Venice and its Lagoon

Founded in the 5th century and spread over 118 small islands, Venice became a major maritime power in the 10th century. The whole city is an extraordinary architectural masterpiece in which even the smallest building contains works by some of the world's greatest artists such as Giorgione, Titian, Tintoretto, Veronese and others.

Tentative. PORTUGAL. Bucaco palace

Thanks to my friend Nuno.
P.S. I love those mask stamps!! :)
Measuring 1450m by 950m, the National Forest is surrounded by a wall with several gates scattered around the perimeter, providing access to the leafy woods which surround the church, part of a Carmelite convent, a monumental palace, and several other buildings of a religious nature. Bucaco's cultural landscape predates this, the only "wilderness” of its kind in Portugal, which was created by the Order of Discalced Carrnelites between 1628 and 1630.  

HOLY SEE. 1/2. Vatican city

My mother sent me this! :) I love it now when everybody around me knows I like postcards. When they go to excursions, they often send me postcards! :)

RUSSIA. 2/25. Sankt Peterburg

The postcard shows the angel on the spire of the SS Peter and Paul cathedral

PORTUGAL. 2/15. Porto

Thanks to my great swap friend Nuno!
Well, I must admit that whenever I hear "Porto", I associate it with the wine. There's so much more than that but it's understandable for a 10-year-old child who's just read "The Three Musketeers" for the second time to remember Portos and his favourite wine. :) I know I must fix this memory with a new one, let's say a visit to Porto. :)

Historic Centre of Oporto

The city of Oporto, built along the hillsides overlooking the mouth of the Douro river, is an outstanding urban landscape with a 2,000-year history. Its continuous growth, linked to the sea (the Romans gave it the name Portus, or port), can be seen in the many and varied monuments, from the cathedral with its Romanesque choir, to the neoclassical Stock Exchange and the typically Portuguese Manueline-style Church of Santa Clara.

UNITED KINGDOM. 2/28. Edinburgh

Thanks to a direct swap with a postcrosser from Scotland.

HOLY SEE. 1/2. Vatican City

An awesome postcard thanks to my friend Matteo from Italy who always thinks of me and my collection when visiting places like this one.

I've been thinking about the splendour of churches - it is a fact that the Orthodox and Catholic faiths have a very rich decoration and one who is from another faith might ask - why do you have to spend so much money on that instead of, e.g. - feeding the poor or something else? Well.. It's a tough question and I've already answered to people asking about that - I think it's all about the traditions. Long history and suitable conditions made it possible marvellous pieces of art  to be created by people of both religions - and each better than the previous. People would compete to create something beautiful because it's been part of their understanding and love of God to create splendid temples. History has always known twisted stories about greed, but hey - it's everywhere. Average people - at least in my country Bulgaria - would love to spend their money or labour to built a new chapel, or when in a church, to donate something, even if they don't have much money to spend.
So we should understand the beauty of such places and know their value in time. Like this one on the picture? Isn't it beautiful? :)

Vatican City

The Vatican City, one of the most sacred places in Christendom, attests to a great history and a formidable spiritual venture. A unique collection of artistic and architectural masterpieces lie within the boundaries of this small state. At its centre is St Peter's Basilica, with its double colonnade and a circular piazza in front and bordered by palaces and gardens. The basilica, erected over the tomb of St Peter the Apostle, is the largest religious building in the world, the fruit of the combined genius of Bramante, Raphael, Michelangelo, Bernini and Maderno.

събота, 8 февруари 2014 г.

Tentative. IRELAND. Historic city of Dublin

Thanks to my father-in-law :)

SRI LANKA. 5/8. Sacred city of Kandy


Sacred City of Kandy

This sacred Buddhist site, popularly known as the city of Senkadagalapura, was the last capital of the Sinhala kings whose patronage enabled the Dinahala culture to flourish for more than 2,500 years until the occupation of Sri Lanka by the British in 1815. It is also the site of the Temple of the Tooth Relic (the sacred tooth of the Buddha), which is a famous pilgrimage site.

SRI LANKA. 4/8. Old town of Galle

Another one sent by Vladimir. :)

Old Town of Galle and its Fortifications

Founded in the 16th century by the Portuguese, Galle reached the height of its development in the 18th century, before the arrival of the British. It is the best example of a fortified city built by Europeans in South and South-East Asia, showing the interaction between European architectural styles and South Asian traditions.

SRI LANKA. 3/8. Ancient city of Sigiriya

Another postcard of Sri Lanka sent from Czech Republic. I think it would have been a great thing if it was actually posted from Sri Lanka. I wish I knew Vladimir at the time he was there. :)

Ancient City of Sigiriya

The ruins of the capital built by the parricidal King Kassapa I (477–95) lie on the steep slopes and at the summit of a granite peak standing some 180m high (the 'Lion's Rock', which dominates the jungle from all sides). A series of galleries and staircases emerging from the mouth of a gigantic lion constructed of bricks and plaster provide access to the site.

SRI LANKA. 2/8. Ancient City of Polonnaruwa

Thanks to a swap friend from the Czech Republic who sent me a few postcards of Sri Lanka he got after a trip to the country.

Ancient City of Polonnaruwa

Polonnaruwa was the second capital of Sri Lanka after the destruction of Anuradhapura in 993. It comprises, besides the Brahmanic monuments built by the Cholas, the monumental ruins of the fabulous garden-city created by Parakramabahu I in the 12th century.

UNITED KINGDOM. 1/28. Avebury megaliths

Avebury megaliths - thanks to Postcrossing :)
A beautiful back of the postcard.

Stonehenge, Avebury and Associated Sites

Stonehenge and Avebury, in Wiltshire, are among the most famous groups of megaliths in the world. The two sanctuaries consist of circles of menhirs arranged in a pattern whose astronomical significance is still being explored. These holy places and the nearby Neolithic sites are an incomparable testimony to prehistoric times.

CHINA. 4/45. The Great Wall

I didn't even have to look this up on the UNESCO website. No need to tell that I really, really want to visit it.
Again thanks to Cynthia.
4 of 45 in China

CHINA. Summer Palace, an Imperial Garden in Beijing

A beautiful postcard from Beijing. All backs of postcards from China are so colourful!! :)
3 of 45 in China.

CHINA. Potala Palace, Lhasa, Tibet

One of the places I've been dreaming of since my childhood! I am quite, quite certain that my idealistic dreams created while listening to traditional chants of Tibetan monks, wouldn't have much in common with the reality. And yet...isn't it a magical place? The sight of the majestic palace topped over the valley, encircled by high mountains, always gives me the goose-bumps! Posting this postcard with the wish to see it one day.
And yes - thanks to my great swapping friend Cynthia from China!
2 of 45 in China

Historic Ensemble of the Potala Palace, Lhasa

The Potala Palace, winter palace of the Dalai Lama since the 7th century, symbolizes Tibetan Buddhism and its central role in the traditional administration of Tibet. The complex, comprising the White and Red Palaces with their ancillary buildings, is built on Red Mountain in the centre of Lhasa Valley, at an altitude of 3,700m. Also founded in the 7th century, the Jokhang Temple Monastery is an exceptional Buddhist religious complex. Norbulingka, the Dalai Lama's former summer palace, constructed in the 18th century, is a masterpiece of Tibetan art. The beauty and originality of the architecture of these three sites, their rich ornamentation and harmonious integration in a striking landscape, add to their historic and religious interest.

GERMANY. Speyer Cathedral

4 of 38 in Germany and a fantastic cathedral I definitely want to visit!

PHILIPPINES. Historic town of Vigan

A great postcard - both front and back, from my swapping friend Jennifer.
1 of 5 in the Philippines

Historic Town of Vigan

Established in the 16th century, Vigan is the best-preserved example of a planned Spanish colonial town in Asia. Its architecture reflects the coming together of cultural elements from elsewhere in the Philippines, from China and from Europe, resulting in a culture and townscape that have no parallel anywhere in East and South-East Asia.

GERMANY. Historic Centre of Wismar

3 of 38 in Germany thanks to Postcrossing!

Historic Centres of Stralsund and Wismar

The medieval towns of Wismar and Stralsund, on the Baltic coast of northern Germany, were major trading centres of the Hanseatic League in the 14th and 15th centuries. In the 17th and 18th centuries they became Swedish administrative and defensive centres for the German territories. They contributed to the development of the characteristic building types and techniques of Brick Gothic in the Baltic region, as exemplified in several important brick cathedrals, the Town Hall of Stralsund, and the series of houses for residential, commercial and crafts use, representing its evolution over several centuries.

SAN MARINO. Historic Centre and Mount Titano

1 of 1 in San Marino! Completed thanks to my friend Matteo from Italy!!!

San Marino Historic Centre and Mount Titano

San Marino Historic Centre and Mount Titano covers 55 ha, including Mount Titano and the historic centre of the city which dates back to the foundation of the republic as a city-state in the 13th century. San Marino is inscribed as a testimony to the continuity of a free republic since the Middle Ages. The inscribed city centre includes fortification towers, walls, gates and bastions, as well as a neo-classical basilica of the 19th century, 14th and 16th century convents, and the Palazzo Publico of the 19th century, as well as the 18th century Titano Theatre. The property represents an historical centre still inhabited and preserving all its institutional functions. Thanks to its position on top of Mount Titano, it was not affected by the urban transformations that have occurred from the advent of the industrial era to today.

Tentative. GERMANY - Heidelberg

A dear present from my dear cousins, one of whom lives in Germany with his girlfriend. A nice memory from one of their trips across the country. So good to know close relatives and friends know that I collect postcards and send such whenever they can! :)

Heidelberg is situated in an unique landscape in the valley of the River Neckar. The castle is a chef d'oeuvre of German renaissance architecture. With the ruins of the castle, the baroque style architecture based on a ground plan of the middle ages and the surrounding landscape Heidelberg became the centre of the German romanticism in the l9th century. In the European wide difference around 1900 concerning the reconstruction of Heidelberg castle the modern preservation of monuments was constituted ("to preserve not to restore"). 

FRANCE. Paris - Eiffel Tower

A postcard sent by my friend Yuri from Russia while on a trip to Paris.
3 of 38 in France

Paris, Banks of the Seine

From the Louvre to the Eiffel Tower, from the Place de la Concorde to the Grand and Petit Palais, the evolution of Paris and its history can be seen from the River Seine. The Cathedral of Notre-Dame and the Sainte Chapelle are architectural masterpieces while Haussmann's wide squares and boulevards influenced late 19th- and 20th-century town planning the world over.