Saturday, March 14, 2009
This is my favourite. I'm glad to get a postcard of this.
Christ Church Cathedral (The Cathedral of the Holy Trinity, commonly known as Christ Church, Cathedral of the United Dioceses of Dublin and Glendalough and Metropolitical Cathedral of the United Provinces of Dublin and Cashel) in Dublin is the elder of the city's two mediæval cathedrals, the other being St. Patrick's Cathedral.
Blarney Castle is a medieval stronghold in Blarney, near Cork, Ireland. It is near the River Martin. The castle originally dates from before AD 1200. It was destroyed in 1446, but subsequently rebuilt by Cormac MacCarthy, the King of Munster. It is currently a partial ruin with some accessible rooms and the battlements. At the top of the castle lies the Stone of Eloquence, better known as the Blarney Stone. Tourists visiting Blarney Castle may hang upside-down over a sheer drop to kiss the stone, which is said to give the gift of eloquence. Photographs are taken of the "magic moment". There are many legends as to the origin of the stone, but some say that it was the Lia Fáil—a magical stone upon which Irish kings were crowned.
The General Post Office in Dublin's O'Connell Street is one of the most impressive buildings in Dublin. In 1916, it was the head quarters of the Rebel Irish Volunteers. It's great Ionic Columns of the Portico still bear the scars of battle with the British forces.
Friday, March 13, 2009
Within its modest dimensions, Ireland encompasses a great variety of scenic beauty. This varied landscape is further enhances by a wealth of remains from the country's ancient history, which includes fortresses, castles and mansions. The predominance of pastoral rather than tillage farming has enabled Ireland to retain many well preserved ring-forts and passage graves dating from pre-historic times.
The Côa Valley Paleolithic Art site is one of the largest known open air sites of Paleolithic art.
In the late 1980s, the engravings were discovered in Vila Nova de Foz Côa, in northeastern Portugal. The site in situated in the valley of the Côa river, and comprises thousands of engraved drawings of horses, bovines and other animal, human and abstract figures, dated from 22,000 to 10,000 years BCE. Since 1995 a team of archaeologists have been studying and cataloging this pre-historical complex and a park was created to receive visitors.
The Roman Temple of Évora (also referred to as the Templo de Diana, after Diana, ancient Roman goddess of the moon, the hunt, and chastity) is located in the city of Évora, in Portugal. The temple is part of the historical centre of the city, classified a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. It is one of the most famous landmarks of Évora and a symbol of Roman presence in Portuguese territory.
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
The Basilica of San Francesco d'Assisi in Assisi, Italy, is the burial place of St. Francis and the mother church of the Franciscan Order. It is the most important places of Christian pilgrimage in Italy. The basilica, which was begun in 1228, is built into the side of a hill and comprises two churches known as the Upper Church and the Lower Church, and a crypt where the remains of the saint are interred. With its accompanying friary, the basilica is a distinctive landmark to those approaching Assisi. The interior of the Upper Church is important as an early example of the Gothic style in Italy.
The Upper and Lower Churches are decorated with frescoes by numerous late medieval painters from the Roman and Tuscan schools, and include works by Cimabue, Giotto, Simone Martini, Pietro Lorenzetti and possibly Pietro Cavallini. The range and quality of the works gives the basilica a unique importance in demonstrating the development of Italian art of this period.
The Bailiwick of Guernsey is a British Crown dependency in the English Channel off the coast of Normandy.
As well as the island of Guernsey itself, it also includes Alderney, Sark, Herm, Jethou, Brecqhou, Burhou, Lihou and other islets. Although the defence of all these islands is the responsibility of the United Kingdom, Guernsey is not part of the UK but rather a separate possession of the Crown, comparable to the Isle of Man. Guernsey is also not part of the European Union.
Santiago de Compostela (also Saint James of Compostela) is the capital of the autonomous community of Galicia. Located in the north west of Spain in the Province of A Coruña, it was the "European City of Culture" for the year 2000. The city's Cathedral is the destination today, as it has been throughout history, of the important 9th century medieval pilgrimage route, the Way of St. James.
One etymology for the name "Compostela" is that it comes from the Latin phrase campus stellae, i.e. "field of the star", making Santiago de Compostela "St. James of the Field of the Star". Other etymologies derive from the Latin word Compositum, i.e. "The well founded", or Composita Tella, meaning "burial ground". Yet another etymology derives it from "San Jacome Apostol"
The University of Évora (Universidade de Évora) is a public university in Évora, Portugal.
The University of Évora, the second oldest in Portugal, was founded in the 16th century (1559) by Cardinal Infante Dom Henrique (the future king of Portugal), and by the Pope Paul IV, and it was delivered to the Society of Jesus.
Le Morne Brabant is a peninsula at the extreme south-western tip of Mauritius and the most windward side on this island. It is highlighted by an eponymous single standing basaltic rock with a summit of 556 metres above sea level which belongs to the most imposing sights on Mauritius. The summit covers an area of more than 12 hectares. There are many overhang caves at the steep slopes. It is surrounded by a lagoon and is a famous tourist attraction. Here is also one of the last three refuges of one of the rarest plants in the world, the Mandrinette. Another rare plant which grows only on the sides of the mountain is Trochetia boutoniana.