Friday 29 December 2017

Kiev: Saint-Sophia Cathedral and Related Monastic Buildings, Kiev-Pechersk Lavra

Kiev is the city of the golden cupolas. I'm still missing in my collection the Saint-Sophia Cathedral and the Church of the Saviour at Berestovo, also included in this site.

Kiev-Pechersk Lavra
This postcard was sent by Mila

Kiev Pechersk Lavra or Kyiv Pechersk Lavra, also known as the Kiev Monastery of the Caves, is a historic Orthodox Christian monastery which gave its name to one of the city districts where it is located in Kiev.
The Kiev Pechersk Lavra contains numerous architectural monuments, ranging from bell towers to cathedrals to underground cave systems and to strong stone fortification walls. The main attractions of the Lavra include Great Lavra Belltower, the notable feature of the Kiev skyline, and the Dormition Cathedral, destroyed in World War II, and fully reconstructed in recent years. Other churches and cathedrals of the Lavra include: the Refectory Church, the Church of All Saints, the Church of the Saviour at Berestove, the Church of the Exaltation of Cross, the Church of the Trinity, the Church of the Nativity of the Virgin, the Church of the Conception of St. Anne, and the Church of the Life-Giving Spring. The Lavra also contains many other constructions, including: the St. Nicholas Monastery, the Kiev Theological Academy and Seminary, and the Debosquette Wall. - in: wikipedia

Church of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross

This postcard was sent by Sergii

The Church of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, from the beginning of its foundation, serves as the burial place of the spiritual personalities. The burial places of the metropolitans Arseniy (Moskvin), Filofey (Uspensky), Ioannikiy (Rudnev), Theognost (Lebedev) and Flavian (Gorodetsky) are located there. - in:

Wednesday 27 December 2017

Dougga / Thugga

Among the most famous monuments at this site are a Libyco-Punic Mausoleum, the capitol, the theatre, and the temples of Saturn and of Juno Caelestis.


The archaeological site of Thugga/Dougga is located in the North-west region of Tunisia, perched on the summit of a hill at an altitude of 571 m, dominating the fertile valley of Oued Khalled. Before the Roman annexation of Numidia, Thugga had existed for more than six centuries and was, probably, the first capital of the Numidian kingdom. It flourished under Roman rule but declined during the Byzantine and Islamic periods. The impressive ruins which are visible today give an idea of the resources of a Romanised Numidian town.
The archaeological site covers an area of approximately 75 ha. These ruins of a complete city with all its components are a testimony to more than 17 centuries of history. They are an outstanding example illustrating the synthesis between different cultures: Numidian, Punic, Hellenistic, and Roman. The Roman monuments were integrated within the urban fabric, essentially Numidian. - in:

Medina of Sousse

A long time ago, a friend of mine told me that Tunisia has some of the most beautiful beaches, but what I would love to see is something like the Medina of Sousse

Medina of Sousse

Located in the Tunisian Sahel, the Medina of Sousse constitutes a harmonious archaeological complex that reflects Arabo-Muslim urbanism applied to a coastal town exposed through its history to piracy and dangers from the sea. With the Medina of Monastir, it constitutes the unique prototype of military coastal architecture of the first centuries of Islam that has been passed down to us. Several monuments of the medina bear witness to this robust, ascetic and imposing architecture, notably the Ribat, the Great Mosque, the Bou Ftata Mosque, the Kasbah and the ramparts. The Ribat, both a fort and a religious building, is an eminent example of this type of construction. - in:

Sunday 24 December 2017

Central University City Campus of the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM)

This University City encloses an Olympic Stadium, about 40 faculties and institutes, a Cultural Center, an ecological reserve, the Central Library, and a few museums

Central Library
This postcard was sent by Marco

The ensemble of buildings, sports facilities and open spaces of the Central University City Campus of the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM), was built from 1949 to 1952 by more than 60 architects, engineers and artists who were involved in the project. As a result, the campus constitutes a unique example of 20th-century modernism integrating urbanism, architecture, engineering, landscape design and fine arts with references to local traditions, especially to Mexico’s pre-Hispanic past. The ensemble embodies social and cultural values of universal significance and is one of the most significant icons of modernity in Latin America. - in:

Saturday 16 December 2017

Vineyard Landscape of Piedmont: Langhe-Roero and Monferrato

This is an area of very good Italian wine, cheese and truffles. A nice place for the views and for the stomach 

Route of Barolo and Barbaresco
This postcard was sent by Gian Luca

The vineyard landscapes of Langhe-Roero and Monferrato in Piedmont consist of a selection of five distinct winegrowing areas and a castle, whose names evoke profound and ancient expertise in the relationship between man and his environment. They reflect a slowly developed association between a diverse range of soils, grape varieties that are often native, and suitable winemaking processes. They offer panoramas of carefully cultivated hillsides, following ancient land divisions punctuated with buildings that lend structure to the visual space: hilltop villages, castles, Romanesque churches, farms, ciabots, cellars and storehouses for cellaring and for the commercial distribution of the wine in the small towns and larger towns on the margins of the vineyards. - in:

Langhe - Castiglione Falletto
This postcard was sent by Gian Luca

The Langhe is a hilly area to the south and east of the river Tanaro in the province of Cuneo in Piedmont, northern Italy.
It is famous for its wines, cheeses, and truffles.
Its vineyards constitute an outstanding example of man’s interaction with his natural environment. Following a long and slow evolution of winegrowing expertise, the best possible adaptation of grape varieties to land with specific soil and climatic components has been carried out, which in itself is related to winemaking expertise, thereby becoming an international benchmark. - in: wikipedia

Tuesday 12 December 2017

Buddhist Monuments in the Horyu-ji Area

The Buddhist Monuments in the Horyu-ji Area are the earliest Buddhist monuments in Japan

This postcard was sent by Yukie

There are around 48 Buddhist monuments in the Horyu-ji area, in Nara Prefecture. Several date from the late 7th or early 8th century, making them some of the oldest surviving wooden buildings in the world. These masterpieces of wooden architecture are important not only for the history of art, since they illustrate the adaptation of Chinese Buddhist architecture and layout to Japanese culture, but also for the history of religion, since their construction coincided with the introduction of Buddhism to Japan from China by way of the Korean peninsula. - in:

Ngorongoro Conservation Area

Ngorongoro Crater is the world's largest caldera and it was formed two to three million years ago

Ngorongo Crater
This postcard was sent by Emerich

The Ngorongoro Conservation Area spans vast expanses of highland plains, savanna, savanna woodlands and forests. Established in 1959 as a multiple land use area, with wildlife coexisting with semi-nomadic Maasai pastoralists practicing traditional livestock grazing, it includes the spectacular Ngorongoro Crater, the world’s largest caldera. The property has global importance for biodiversity conservation due to the presence of globally threatened species, the density of wildlife inhabiting the area, and the annual migration of wildebeest, zebra, gazelles and other animals into the northern plains. Extensive archaeological research has also yielded a long sequence of evidence of human evolution and human-environment dynamics, including early hominid footprints dating back 3.6 million years. - in:

Kilimanjaro National Park

The Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa and is part of the Kilimanjaro National Park

This postcard was sent by Emerich

Kilimanjaro National Park is a Tanzanian national park, located 300 kilometres (190 mi) south of the equator and in Kilimanjaro RegionTanzania. The park is located near the city of Moshi. The park includes the whole of Mount Kilimanjaro above the tree line and the surrounding montane forest belt above 1,820 metres (5,970 ft).
A variety of animals can be found in the park. Above the timberline, the Kilimanjaro tree hyrax, the grey duiker, and rodents are frequently encountered. The bushbuck and red duiker appear above the timberline in places. Cape buffaloes are found in the montane forest and occasionally in the moorland and grassland. Elephants can be found between the Namwai and Tarakia rivers and sometimes occur at higher elevations. In the montane forests, blue monkeys, western black and white colobusesbushbabies, and leopards can be found. - in: wikipedia

Monday 11 December 2017

Cultural Landscape of Bali Province: the Subak System as a Manifestation of the Tri Hita Karana Philosophy

This site gave me a real big headache! There are a lot of temples and rice fields in Bali and when this site was inscribed, not very long ago, there were a lot of postcrossers offering and collecting any water temple or any rice field in Bali as part of this site. I realized later that is not like that and the card I had brought me serious doubts. Then I received two more postcards and after some research I think that the first postcard of this post is part of the Royal Water Temple Pura Taman Ayun, the second is part of Subak Landscape of Pekerisan Watershed and the third, which was the first I received, is not part of the protected area. Forgive me if I'm wrong... 

Taman Ayun Temple
This postcard was sent by Emerich

Taman Ayun literally translates as ‘beautiful garden’ and is generally regarded as one of the most attractive temples of Bali. The Taman Ayun temple is situated in a beautiful park with trees and ponds, near the village of Mengwi in the south of Bali at about 8 km southwest of Ubud and 18 km northwest of Denpasar.
Pura Taman Ayun was built in 1634 by the Raja of Mengwi, I Gusti Agung Putu. It is a socalled Pura Kawiten or family temple, a special temple where the deified ancestors of the Raja Dynasty of Mengwi and important gods of other temples are honored. - in:

Tirta Empul
This postcard was sent by Shinta

Tirta Empul, Bali, is one of the largest and busiest water temples in Indonesia. The temple was founded in 926 A.D. and is dedicated to Vishnu, who is the Hindu God of water. The name of the temple actually means ‘holy water spring’ in Balinese.
Tirta Empul is located close to the town of Tampaksiring in the village of Manukaya. - in:

Karangasem Rice Field

The five protected areas (in red what I have):
  • Supreme Water Temple Pura Ulun Danu Batur
  • Lake Batur
  • Subak Landscape of Pekerisan Watershed
  • Subak Landscape of Catur Angga Batukaru
  • Royal Water Temple Pura Taman Ayun

Saturday 9 December 2017

Kinabalu Park

This was one of the first national parks of Malaysia and the first Malaysia's world heritage site designated by UNESCO

Kinabalu Park
This postcard was sent by Zoe

Kinabalu Park, in the State of Sabah on the northern end of the island of Borneo, is dominated by Mount Kinabalu (4,095 m), the highest mountain between the Himalayas and New Guinea. It has a very wide range of habitats, from rich tropical lowland and hill rainforest to tropical mountain forest, sub-alpine forest and scrub on the higher elevations. It has been designated as a Centre of Plant Diversity for Southeast Asia and is exceptionally rich in species with examples of flora from the Himalayas, China, Australia, Malaysia, as well as pan-tropical flora. - in:

Mount Kinabalu
This postcard was sent by Mary

Mount Kinabalu (MalayGunung Kinabalu) is a mountain in SabahMalaysia. It is protected as Kinabalu Park, a World Heritage Site. Kinabalu is the highest peak in Borneo's Crocker Range and is the highest mountain in the Malay Archipelago as well as the highest mountain in Malaysia. - in: wikipedia

Camino Real de Tierra Adentro

The "Camino Real de Tierra Adentro", also known as the Silver Route, consists of 55 sites and five existing World Heritage sites  and includes historic cities, towns, bridges, haciendas and other monuments along the 1,400km route between the Historic Center of Mexico City and the town of Valle de AllendeChihuahua. I have four of the five existing World Heritage sites and only two of the other 55.

Historic Center of Mexico City
This postcard was sent by Marco

The Centro Histórico de la Ciudad de México (English: Historic Centre of Mexico City) is the central neighborhood in Mexico CityMexico, focused on Zócalo or main plaza. - in: wikipedia

This postcard was sent by Marco

Querétaro City is the capital and largest city of the state of Querétaro, located in central Mexico. - in: wikipedia

San Miguel de Allende
This postcard was sent by Marco

San Miguel de Allende is a city and municipality located in the far eastern part of the state of Guanajuato in central Mexico.
The main attraction of the town is its well-preserved historic center, filled with buildings from the 17th and 18th centuries. - in: wikipedia

This postcard was sent by Steffi

Guanajuato is a city and municipality in central Mexico and the capital of the state of the same name. It is in a narrow valley, which makes its streets narrow and winding. - in: wikipedia

Historic Center of Lagos de Moreno and Bridge
This postcard was sent by Oscar

Lagos de Moreno is a city and its surrounding municipal area of the same name, located in the extreme northeastern part of the state of Jalisco in Mexico.
The city's modern history started on 31 March 1563, when it was founded as Villa de Santa María de los Lagos, by Captain Don Hernando Martel and around 100 colonist families. - in: wikipedia

Chapel of San Antonio of the former Hacienda of Juana Guerra
This postcard was sent by Marco

Ten minutes driving from Nombre de Dios Valley you can visit the 1586’s ExHacienda Juana Guerra’s Chapel of San Antonio de Padua, which belongs to Camino Real de Tierra Adentro, named World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
The main house and the mill still survive from the cattle ranch. In its good times, provisions were bought here and people who traveled along the Camino Real Tierra Adentro were sheltered. - in:

Thursday 7 December 2017

Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and Canal

This aqueduct is a masterpiece of engineering and inspired many projects all over the world. In this postcard is not possible to have a clear notion of how high it is, but it is very high.

Pontcysyllte Aqueduct
This postcard was sent by Anu

The Pontcysyllte Aqueduct is a navigable aqueduct that carries the Llangollen Canal across the River Dee in north east Wales. The 18-arched stone and cast iron structure, which took ten years to design and build, was completed in 1805. It is now the oldest and longest navigable aqueduct on Great Britain and the highest in the world.
The aqueduct was built by Thomas Telford and William Jessop near the 18th-century road crossing, Pont Cysylltau. - in: wikipedia

The English Lake District

The mountains, forests and lakes in this area provide amazing landscapes that served as inspiration to poets and artists 

Lake District
This postcard was sent by Richard

Located in northwest England, the English Lake District is a mountainous area, whose valleys have been modelled by glaciers in the Ice Age and subsequently shaped by an agro-pastoral land-use system characterized by fields enclosed by walls. The combined work of nature and human activity has produced a harmonious landscape in which the mountains are mirrored in the lakes. Grand houses, gardens and parks have been purposely created to enhance the landscape’s beauty. This landscape was greatly appreciated from the 18th century onwards by the Picturesque and later Romantic movements, which celebrated it in paintings, drawings and words. It also inspired an awareness of the importance of beautiful landscapes and triggered early efforts to preserve them. - in:

Aranjuez Cultural Landscape

Aranjuez has amazing gardens and beautiful architecture, like the Royal Palace

Royal Palace of Aranjuez
This postcard was sent by Patricia

The Royal Palace of Aranjuez (SpanishPalacio Real de Aranjuez) is a former royal residence of Spanish royalty. Located in the town of Aranjuez, it is open to the public as one of several Spanish royal sites in the Community of MadridSpain. It was established around the time Philip II of Spain moved the capital from Toledo to Madrid. Aranjuez became one of four seasonal seats of government, occupied during springtime (from about holy week). Thereafter, the court moved successively to RascafríaEl Escorial, wintering in Madrid.
In 1931, during the Second Spanish Republic the area was declared an Artistic Historical Monument and opened to the public. - in: wikipedia

Wednesday 6 December 2017

Chief Roi Mata’s Domain

Three islands are inscribed as part of the Roi Mata's domain: Efate, Lelepa and Eretoka. 

Eretoka Island
This postcard was sent by Emerich

The continuing cultural landscape of Chief Roi Mata’s domain, Vanuatu, has Outstanding Universal Value as an outstanding example of a landscape representative of Pacific chiefly systems. This is reflected in the interaction of people with their environment over time in respecting the tangible remains associated with Roi Mata and being guided by the spiritual and moral legacy of his social reforms. The landscape reflects continuing Pacific chiefly systems and respect for this authority through tabu prohibitions on use of Roi Mata’s residence and burial that have been observed for over 400 years and structured the local landscape and social practices. The landscape memorialises the deeds of Roi Mata who still lives for many people in contemporary Vanuatu as a source of power and inspiration. - in:

Sunday 3 December 2017

Historic Centre of Sighişoara

Sighişoara is a small, fortified medieval town where the clock tower is seen as a symbol of the citadel and considered one of the most expressive clock towers in the whole Transylvania

Sighisoara Clock Tower
This postcard was sent by Anca

The Clock Tower of Sighișoara (RomanianTurnul cu Ceas) is the main entry point to the citadel, opposite guarded by Taylor's Tower. With its 64 meters of height, the tower is visible from almost every corner of the city from Mures County, its purpose was to defend the main gate of the citadel and also served as the town hall until 1556. - in: wikipedia

Mausoleum of Khoja Ahmed Yasawi

Even unfinished, this mausoleum still looks quite impressive

Mausoleum of Khawaja Ahmed Yasawi
This postcard was sent from Russia by Anna

The Mausoleum of Khawaja Ahmed Yasawi is an unfinished mausoleum in the city of Turkestan, in southern Kazakhstan. The structure was commissioned in 1389 by Timur, who ruled the area as part of the expansive Timurid Empire, to replace a smaller 12th-century mausoleum of the famous Turkic poet and Sufi mystic, Khoja Ahmed Yasawi (1093–1166). However, construction was halted with the death of Timur in 1405.
Despite its incomplete state, the mausoleum has survived as one of the best-preserved of all Timurid constructions. Its creation marked the beginning of the Timurid architectural style. - in: wikipedia


Petra is also known as the Rose City due to the color of the stone out of which it is carved and is one of the new seven wonders of the world 

The Treasury
This postcard was sent from the United States by Claudia

Al-Khazneh ("The Treasury"), is one of the most elaborate temples in the ancient Arab Nabatean Kingdom city of Petra. As with most of the other buildings in this ancient town, including the Monastery (Arabic: Ad Deir), this structure was carved out of a sandstone rock face.
Al-Khazneh was originally built as a mausoleum and crypt at the beginning of the 1st century AD during the reign of Aretas IV Philopatris. Its Arabic name Treasury derives from one legend that bandits or pirates hid their loot in a stone urn high on the second level.
Many of the building's architectural details have eroded away during the two thousand years since it was carved and sculpted from the cliff. The sculptures are thought to be those of various mythological figures associated with the afterlife. On top are figures of four eagles that would carry away the souls. The figures on the upper level are dancing Amazons with double-axes. The entrance is flanked by statues of the twins Castor and Pollux who lived partly on Olympus and partly in the underworld. - in: wikipedia