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The camera is a collaboration between Retrospekt and Parks Project.
— Read on www.afar.com/magazine/this-limited-edition-polaroid-camera-is-inspired-by-the-grand-canyon

Ludwig’s favorite castle 🏰 Neuschwanstein in Bavarian. Walt Disney was so impressed with it that he used it as the model for the Disney castle 🏰

 

 

Original luke bender 577747 unsplash.jpg?1520549056?ixlib=rails 0.3

Sailing isn’t just another way to get around—it grants you access to places, communities, and experiences that other travelers often miss.

Sailors are the masters of their travel time: They can go (almost) anywhere in the world on a whim and always receive a warmer reception than that afforded to mere tourists. Like a fraternal club that doesn’t advertise, they rendezvous at those select locales known for great sailing weather and a welcoming attitude toward visiting boats. Once at anchor, sailors have access to everything else a new port has to offer, including cosmopolitan nightlife, tropical beaches, or national wildernesses. Whether you’re a seasoned sailor or a landlubber looking to charter a boat and dip your toes into the lifestyle, you’ll want to head to one of these seven islands. Not only are they beloved by the sailing community, but they also have plenty of non-nautical charms that’ll have you returning time and time again.

1. Azores, Portugal

For 500 years the Azores have been the first land sailors touch after long west-to-east routes across the Atlantic as they near the Iberian Peninsula. It’s traditional for captain and crew of each arriving boat to pass through sailing’s most legendary meeting spot, Peter’s Café Sport, which opened in 1918. Crew members looking to exchange their labor for one-way passage lurk in the café, while leisure visitors sit back and soak up the atmosphere. The islands are known for their dramatic landscapes and peaceful fishing villages, but come as a sailor rather than a fly-in tourist to experience a truly welcoming, fraternal atmosphere on this island run by sailors for sailors.

The interior of Réunion, protected by a ring of ridges, hides great hiking trails and stunning waterfalls.

2. Réunion, France

Five hundred miles off the east coast of Madagascar, Réunion rises out of the Indian Ocean like a steep-sided salad bowl. Twin volcanoes, Piton de la Fournaise and Piton des Neiges, poke holes 8,600 and 10,000 feet into the sky, respectively. Hiking trails lace the wilderness around them, and the slopes attract climbers, cavers, and canyoneers. Tickets from JFK or LAX often run $2,000 or more to this remote tropical island filled with rain forests and surrounded by coral reefs, and the trip takes more than 24 hours of plane-hopping. Instead, pilot your own boat into the arms of a large sailing community and enjoy the best harbor facilities in the Indian Ocean, according to Noonsite, an online sailors’ database of routes and destinations.

3. Bermuda

Every even-numbered year, more than 150 privately owned sailboats depart Newport, Rhode Island, for a 635-mile race to Bermuda as part of the most famous amateur yacht race in the world, the Bermuda Race. Competition is relaxed, and honor goes to any who compete regardless of a win, so ready your boat (or talk your way onto somebody else’s) for the 51st event, running on June 15. The camaraderie and instant community alone are enough to make anyone fall in love with sailing. Once you’re docked in Bermuda, be sure to weave past the harbors’ forests of steel boat masts to the 20-square-mile island’s interior, and check out a few of the more than 90 remaining British forts, the earliest of which was built in 1612.

The coves and inlets of Rhodes’s rocky coastline are best explored by boat.

4. Rhodes, Greece

The most famous waters in Western history also happen to be in the sunniest part of Greece. The people of Rhodes have hoisted sail into the winds since before Homer recounted their meddling in the Trojan War 3,000 years ago. Closer to the Turkish coast than to the Greek mainland, it’s home to the oldest inhabited medieval town in Europe, the Old Town in the city of Rhodes. The island’s rocky coastlines, suited to the medieval fortifications bricked into them, make for a break of scenery from typical, flat stretches of white sand in the Mediterranean, although the natural harbors make for beautiful beaches, too. With mild Mediterranean winds and currents, Rhodes is famous for its pleasant sailing conditions, making this the perfect place to brush up on your captaining.

5. Santa Catalina Island, California

Because of its jagged coastline, limited number of natural harbors, and hazardous wind conditions, sailors are less inclined to frequent the Pacific Coast of the United States than they are the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts. But Santa Catalina, a desert island 20 miles off the coast of Los Angeles, is a haven for boat life in the region. It’s also a paragon of raw nature: The Catalina Island Conservancy protects 85 percent of the island’s 75 square miles. Bison roam wild on land and whales swim in the natural harbors. Avalon, the only town, keeps car traffic to a minimum by restricting each household to only one ultra-small vehicle—think classic VW Beetle or golf cart.

The capital of Aruba is colorful in more ways than one.

6. Aruba

The cactus-strewn desert island of Aruba is the last Caribbean stop for many private boats heading through the Panama Canal and out to the Pacific Ocean. It sits outside the hurricane belt that sweeps up so much of the region, which makes it a perfect refuge for off-season sailors. (Hurricane season runs from June to November.) Dutch-flavored capital Oranjestad is a cosmopolitan city of rainbow-hued colonial buildings and is known to punch above its weight with trendy after-hours nightlife. You’re as likely to hear English, Spanish, and French spoken by locals as you are the official Dutch and Papiamento creole; from Aruba’s more tropical southern shore, you can easily see Venezuela, just 15 miles away.

7. Key West, Florida

Too often overlooked by sailors eager to enter the Caribbean’s foreign waters, laid-back Key West is exactly the scenic backdrop of tropical beaches and turquoise sailing waters U.S. residents seek in other countries. If Key West weren’t within our borders, it would rank a lot higher on sailing itineraries. Sailors who crave foreign shores can easily skip over to The Bahamas at daybreak and arrive by lunch, but the mellow Keys have all the sugar sand and palm trees you could want.

Article by Matt Jancer in  https://www.afar.com/magazine/7-islands-that-will-make-you-want-to-buy-a-sailboat?inspiration=outdoor-adventure&sub_inspiration=water-sports

Most of us have a love-hate relationship with airports. They’re a means to an end, a necessary evil if we’re to have the holiday of our dreams. But every once in a while, an airport comes along that is a little special, and the journey we dreaded becomes a pleasure. Here are our picks for the seven nicest airports in the world.

1. Singapore Changi

Singapore Changi
Singapore Changi is so nice that in places it doesn’t even feel like an airport. I mean, what other airport would incorporate a butterfly garden or a phenomenal display of tropical orchids? Hub through Changi and you’ll be positively begging for your plane to be delayed so you can make the most of the airside cinema and the world’s tallest airport slide. There’s an entertainment deck, cactus garden, koi pond and art installations worthy of a city gallery. You can shower, have a massage and enjoy a swim in a proper pool, take a nap on one of the lie-flat chairs in a quiet corner or book a hotel room for a decent rest. Whoever planned Changi knew what they were doing – and executed it well. The airport even offers free city tours to those with sufficiently long layovers but honestly, who’d want to drag themselves away from the airport when it’s as good as this?

2. Oslo Gardermoen

Oslo Gardermoen
If you’re a fan of Scandinavian design, then Oslo’s classically elegant interior is bound to give you the warm and fuzzies. Sleek natural wood and plenty of glass give this airport a light, airy feel. Six steel sculptures, the work of Norwegian artist Per Inge Bjørlo, form a prominent art installation. Airside, Carin Wessel created a work that drew its inspiration from clouds and webs. The airport also features what it calls Sound Refreshment Stations; stand beneath them and they’ll make a refreshing sound that can cure you of any flight-induced anxiety.

3. Hong Kong International

Hong Kong International
Another airport that has won plaudits for its cutting-edge design is Hong Kong International. A series of breathtaking, uncluttered spaces created by British architect Norman Foster, it has won award after award for its architecture. But there’s functionality behind that glossy image: the airport has been designed to cope with the devastating typhoons that occasionally hit the region. Just outside, you’ll find SkyCity Nine Eagles Golf Course a nine-hole regulation golf course – they’ll rent equipment and store your luggage for you while you play. And if you’ve worked up an appetite, the airport is also particularly good when it comes to food, with an eclectic mix of Asian and Western outlets reflecting the territory’s fusion heritage.

4. Amsterdam Schiphol

Amsterdam Schiphol
Arguably Europe’s best airport, Amsterdam’s sprawling Schiphol could easily be a nightmare, but thoughtfully organized, it’s not. Stroll along its lengthy thoroughfares and you’ll find delicatessen counters crammed full of local cheese, meat, and chocolates. Inspired by the city’s famous tulips? Pick up your bulbs here ready to plant when you get home (double check your country’s customs laws first, of course). If you don’t have green fingers, there are brightly painted wooden tulips to stuff in your rucksack instead. Whiling away the time until your flight is a pleasure, not least because there’s a miniature Rijksmuseum where you can view ten of the collection’s 17th-century masterpieces. The museum temporarily closed in January 2018 for roof repairs but expects to reopen soon.

5. Vancouver International

Vancouver International
The creators of Canada’s nicest airport succeeded in bringing an outdoor enthusiast vibe to their terminal. They installed a 114,000-liter tank to house Vancouver Aquarium’s ocean exhibit. In it, there are around 5,000 ocean creatures – everything from starfish to sea urchins are represented. There’s a smaller, separate tank for jellyfish, too. The airport also features a green wall: an 18-meter high structure that’s home to over 28,000 plants with a built-in irrigation and feeding system.

6. London Heathrow

London Heathrow
A few short years ago, you’d have laughed with derision at the mere suggestion Heathrow should deserve a place on this list. But London’s largest airport has got its act together and flying from at least some of its terminals is now a pleasure rather than a pain. The tide turned with the construction of Terminal 5. Its light and airy departures hall was a refreshing change from the dingy halls and corridors that characterized the older terminals. With improved shops and restaurants you’d actually eat at – thank you Gordon Ramsay Plane Food – the wait for a gate is now a pleasant one. There are still flaws. Though its retail outlets win plaudits, some terminals are still resolutely geared to the wealthy foreigner rather than the Average Joe. But hey, John Lewis has opened a branch in the newly refurbished Terminal 2 so it can’t all be bad.

7. Easter Island

Easter Island
The polar opposite of the big city hubs, Easter Island’s tiny airport receives few flights due to its isolated location in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. But visitors to the famous moai of Rapa Nui must pass through this terminal on their way to the tropical paradise. Drive up the road beyond the airport and time it right and you can watch a Dreamliner depart for distant Chile. Once you’ve cleared check-in and border formalities the departure lounge awaits. And that’s why Easter Island makes this list. Instead of sitting in rows of identical seats in a faceless lounge, passengers are invited to step outside to the garden and wait for their plane in the glorious sunshine. With a fresh breeze on your face and a chilled drink in your hand, the time passes quickly and you might even be disappointed you have to board your flight.

http://blog.thediscoverer.com/the-7-nicest-airports-in-the-world/
About the author: Julia Hammond | Travel Writer

Enthusiastic advocate for independent travel and passionate geographer, Julia considers herself privileged to earn a living doing something she loves. When not roaming the globe, you’ll find her windswept but smiling, chatting away to her two dogs as they wander the Essex marshes.
Simple Mobile Article #2 - HeroMachu Picchu is only one of the many stunning sites you should visit while traveling in Latin America. (photo-Getty)

There’s something heartwarming about summertime travel. Perhaps it’s the nostalgic feeling of being off from school or simply the welcome vitamin D boost after a cold, long winter. Whatever it is, planning a summer vacation is perfect for taking a break from your daily routine.

But even when you’re trying to get away from it all, staying connected to family and friends is a priority for most travelers. That’s why having a wireless service plan from SIMPLE MOBILE is a travel essential. All SIMPLE MOBILE service plans allow you to use your plan’s talk, text, & data while roaming across 16 Latin American countries — so yes, you can even post about your trip online with international roaming coverage in these countries.

And this part of the world is a fantastic option when planning your next trip because plane tickets are relatively inexpensive and flight times aren’t too long. Here are the countries you should definitely consider visiting.

Simple Mobile Article #2 - Mexico

This hidden beach in Mexico is only accessible via tunnel.Getty

1. Mexico

Mexico is the most populous Spanish-speaking country in the world, and it’s home to a number of incredible sights. A visit to the hidden beach on Islas Marietas is great for a secluded day trip getaway. And getting there is half the fun: You have to swim through a short tunnel carved by the sea and into a crater to reach the beach. If you’re a history buff, you can visit the third-largest pyramid in the world. Known as the Pyramid of the Sun, it’s a relic of the Teotihuacan civilization with picturesque views from its summit. You can also enjoy a trip to The Arch, an impressive rock formation located at the southern tip of Cabo San Lucas. Grab a bottle of vino, hit the beach, and watch the sunset shine off the rocks on this natural wonder.

Simple Mobile Article #2 - Peru
The Rainbow Mountains in Peru get their signature coloring from erosion.Getty

2. Peru

Machu Picchu is probably one of Peru’s most famous destinations, but the country is filled with a long list of extraordinary places to visit. Located in the Andes, the Rainbow Mountains are an Instagram-worthy colorful mountainside— and with SIMPLE MOBILE roaming coverage, you won’t have to wait until you’re back in the U.S. to post it to your account. The peaks’ signature look has been formed by sedimentary mineral layers exposed by erosion. To take your adventuring to the next level, visit Huacachina and do a dune buggy or sandboarding tour. The expansive desert landscape will make you feel like you’re on another planet. There’s also an aerial tour of the Nazca Lines, ancient geoglyphs that were believed to have been created by the Nazca culture between 500 BC and 500 AD. Due to their isolation on a dry, windless, stable plateau, they’ve been naturally preserved for thousands of years and are predicted to stay intact for years to come.

Simple Mobile Article #2 - DR

Get a behind-the-scenes look at your favorite films by visiting Los Tres Ojos in the Dominican Republic.Getty

3. Dominican Republic

If traveling to a Caribbean island is more your style, the Dominican Republic is a great option to check out this summer. For a tranquil yet thrilling adventure, you should definitely visit the 27 Charcos, a series of natural waterfalls that you can climb, jump, and swim in, with the support of a travel guide. If you love to hike, make sure a trip to Cordillera Central is on your itinerary. It’s the highest mountain range in the Dominican Republic and in all of the West Indies, so pack layers to stay warm once you get to the top. Then there’s Los Tres Ojos, the perfect place to discover an expansive world below the DR surface. This 50-yard open air limestone cave also doubles as a famous film production location, having been featured in movies like “Tarzan” and “Jurassic Park.”

Simple Mobile Article #2 - Costa Rica

The Arenal Volcano in Costa Rica remains steadily active to this day. Getty

4. Costa Rica

With a total width of 200 miles from coast to coast, the tropical climate and proximity to the ocean makes Costa Rica another fantastic travel option in Latin America. Though the summer months make up the country’s wet season, July through early August usually marks a short mid-year, mini-dry season, making this the perfect window of time for your visit. Tortuguero, or the Land of Turtles, is the only village in Costa Rica without cars. It’s a great way to experience the country’s diverse rainforest wildlife while floating through an intricate canal system. The Arenal Volcano is great for when you want to squeeze in a little learning with your adventuring. While it’s been relatively dormant since 2010, it’s still an incredible sight to explore, especially by going on one of Mistico Park’s hanging bridge tours. Be sure to bring a camera with you to get stunning shots of the tropical birds and foliage along the way.

http://www.businessinsider.com/south-american-central-american-countries-to-visit

Record 103 Million Americans Traveling This Holiday, Most Seeking Warmer Weather

 
According to AAA, more than 103 million Americans–the most on record–are expected to travel for the year-end holidays. This represents a 1.5 percent increase, or 1.5 million more people traveling, compared with last year. This comes despite one fewer travel day this holiday season. The year-end holiday travel period is defined as Friday, December 23 to Monday, January 2, 2017.

The increase in holiday travel this year is being driven by additional consumer spending, a result of improvements in the labor market and rising wages. Additionally, low gas prices and increased consumer optimism will prompt more Americans than ever to set out on road trips, take to the skies, or board trains, buses and cruise ships to celebrate the holidays.

“It’s the season for holiday travel, and this year more Americans will travel to celebrate the holidays and ring in the New Year than ever before,” said AAA President and CEO Marshall Doney. “Rising incomes and continued low gas prices should make for a joyous holiday travel season.”

Most travelers will drive this holiday season

The vast majority of travelers–93.6 million people–will take a holiday road trip, an increase of 1.5 percent over last year. Air travel is expected to increase by 2.5 percent, with more than 6 million Americans flying to their holiday destinations. Travel by other modes of transportation, including cruises, trains and buses, will decrease slightly, to 3.5 million travelers.

New Year’s gas prices second-cheapest in nearly a decade

AAA estimates U.S. drivers have saved more than $27 billion at the gas pumps so far this year compared to the same period last year. Today’s national average price for a gallon of gasoline is $2.23, 23 cents more than the average price on New Year’s Day 2016 ($2.00). Most U.S. drivers will pay the second-cheapest New Year’s Day gas prices since 2009, when the national average was $1.62.

Holiday airfares, hotel rates and car rental prices mixed

According to AAA’s Leisure Travel Index, holiday airfares are projected to average $204 for a roundtrip flight along the top 40 domestic routes. Rates for AAA Two and Three Diamond Rated lodgings are expected to increase 7 percent, with travelers spending an average of $128 and $160 per night, respectively. Daily car rental rates will average $66, slightly lower than last year’s holiday travel season.

Warm-weather destinations top the list of most popular holiday destinations

With the exception of New York City–an-ever popular holiday destination–warm-weather locales in Florida, Nevada and California top the list of most popular destinations for this holiday season travel.

WPJ News | AAA 2016 Year end Travel Forecast

Vacation News » Miami Edition | By Michael Gerrity | December 23, 2016

 

IMG_1467

Le Louvre photo by Annalisa Weller, 2009

 

The following museums were found on several lists as the most visited in 2015 around the world. I was quite surprised to find out that I have visited 7 of the 10. My travels have not brought me to Asia yet so that removes Numbers 2, 8 & 10 for me. Better get to work on that! My daughter just returned from China so “we” could use the familial visits to check off  another one on the list-not really.

IMG_3212

National Gallery of Art, photo by Annalisa Weller, 2015

 

I would, however, like to add the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., which opened in 1937. As I a child I was lucky to live close to DC & so we visited it quite often. Last year while in Washington, DC for business, I spent the afternoon in the National Gallery of Art with my family. As I turned the corners, I would get a glimpse of some of my favorite works of art & felt like I was seeing dear old friends-Renoir, Monet, Manet, Degas, Cassatt, Cezanne, Picasso, Van Gogh, Fragonard, da Vinci and more. They make me so happy & speak to my soul. Another wonderful museum is the Salvador Dali Museum in St Petersburg, Florida which houses the largest collection of Dali’s works outside of Spain. Not only are the paintings & sculptures fascinating but so is the building. Stanford University in Palo Alto, California has a wonderful collection of Rodin sculptures in a garden setting that is definitely worth checking out.

So get out there and appreciate the beautiful things in life! Tell me which are your favorites.

1. The Louvre in Paris

8.7 million visitors in 2015.

2. The National Museum of China in Beijing

7.3 million visitors in 2015.

3. National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C.

6.9 million visitors in 2015.

4. National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.

6.9 million visitors in 2015.

5. British Museum in London

6.8 million visitors in 2015.

6. Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York

6.3 million visitors in 2015.

7. Vatican Museum

6 million visitors in 2015.

8. Shanghai Science and Technology Museum

5.9 million visitors in 2015.

9. National Gallery in London

5.9 million visitors in 2015.

10. National Palace Museum in Taiwan

5.3 million visitors in 2015.

 

As a book-a-holic coming from a long line of book-a-holics, walking into one of these libraries is like walking into paradise. Each is so unique that it makes it difficult to choose my favorite. I have only stepped into the sacred walls of a few of these, I have now added a couple of them to my must see some day list. Enjoy but shhhhh….remember that you’re in a library.

below is from Asta Thrastardottir in http://www.businessinsider.com/18-of-the-worlds-greatest-libraries

If you love books, libraries are some of the most spectacular buildings in the world.

To celebrate these monumentally important buildings, we’ve complied a list of the most magnificent libraries on the planet.

From a library hidden in the forests of Beijing to one in Egypt that was designed like a sundial, these are the libraries that all book lovers should visit in their lifetime.

1. The Admont Library in Admont, Austria

Located in the foothills of the Alps, this beautiful library is the second largest monastery library in the world. The library hall was designed in the late Baroque style by the architect Joseph Hueber in 1776 with a nearly 230-foot-long hall that contains 200,000 volumes.

The ceilings were painted by Bartolomeo Altomonte and show the stages of human knowledge, up to the high point of Divine Revelation.

Best Libraries From Around The World - The Admont Getty Images/Imagno

2. George Peabody Library in Baltimore, Maryland, USA

The Peabody Library was funded by the the philanthropist George Peabody. Peabody built the library as a gift to the citizens of Baltimore for their kindness and hospitality.

Designed by 19th-century architect Edmund Lind, Peabody is known for its interior that has a soaring atrium. The five stories of cast-iron balconies are filled to the brim with books, and the skylight roof showers the library in natural light.

Libraries From Around The World - PeabodyFlickr/Matthew Petroff

3. The Royal Library Of Copenhagen in Copenhagen, Denmark

Completed in 1999, the ‘Black Diamond’ was built as an extension to the national library of Denmark. The neo-modern library gets its name from its polished black granite and irregular angles.

The library’s harsh exterior is interrupted by an atrium made from only glass. This glass atrium makes the interior of the building an incredible space that is full of light and views of the water, which makes for a really gorgeous reading environment.

Best Libraries From Around The World - The Royal Library of Copenhagen Flickr/Simon Lam

 4. Musashino Art University Library in Tokyo, Japan

Japanese architect Sou Fujimoto designed the library to be the simplest library in the world, made from only bookcases and a glass exterior. The 20-foot high walls are made from bookshelves, and are only interrupted by bridge-like reading areas.

Fujimoto tells arcspace that the only things you need to make a library are “books, shelves, light, and beautiful places.”

Libraries From Around The World - Musashino libraryFlickr/yoxito

5. Boston Public Library in Boston, Massachusetts, USA

The Boston Public Library contains roughly 23 million items, making it the second-largest public library in the US. The library is known for its incredible courtyard, Italian-inspired architecture, entrance atrium, and its quintessential library reading room: Bates Hall.

The Bates Hall of the library is named after Joshua Bates, the library’s first benefactor. In 1852, Bates agree to donate a large sum to the building of the library with a few conditions: that the building would be an ornament to the city and that it be perfectly free for everyone.

Best Libraries From Around The World - Boston Public LibraryFlickr/Xynn Tii

6. Stuttgart City Library in Stuttgart, Germany

This cube-shaped, nine-story library takes its design from the Pantheon of ancient Rome, according to Designboom.

The aim of the library was to create a continuum inside of the room, so the entire room is painted in uniform pure-white. The only color in the building comes from the books themselves.

Best Libraries From Around The World - Stuttgart City LibraryFlickr/jwltr freiburg

7. José Vasconcelos Library in Mexico City, Mexico

Designed by architect Alberto Kalach, the library is a concrete and glass structure. The bookshelves look as if they are hovering in midair, and a giant whale skeleton hangs in the center of the library.

The library is named after José Vasconcelos, who was a philosopher and politician. Vasconcelos was an important cultural figure in Mexico and an active promoter of reading.

Best Libraries From Around The World - Vasconcelos LibraryFickr/LWYang

8. Liyuan Library in Beijing, China

Located in a small village outside of Beijing, the single-story library blends into its forest surroundings. The library is made from timber beams and its exterior is covered in sticks, according to dezeen. The light of the library comes from the cracks in the twig frame.

The building may be covered in firewood but it has a very advanced integrated cooling system that draws in cold air from the lake it sits on. The library is also completely eco-friendly and made from all recyclable material.

Plus, it looks like an incredibly cozy place to sit and read a book.

Liyuan LibraryFlickr/Forgemind ArchiMedia

9. Vennesla Library and Cultural Center in Vennesla, Norway

This library in Norway is made of a series of arcs, or “ribs,” that support the roof. The concept of the building comes from the ribs of a whale skeleton.

”In this project, we developed a rib concept to create usable hybrid structures that combine a timber construction with all technical devices and the interior,” architects Helen & Hard told ArchDaily.

Best Libraries From Around The World - Vennesla Library Getty Images/View Pictures

10. Beinecke Rare Book Library in New Haven, Connecticut, USA

The Beineck Rare Book & Manuscript Library is the literary archive of the Yale University Library, and is the largest building in the world devoted to the preservation of rare books and documents. The entire library is shaped around the massive display in the center.

The library’s building is iconic because of its incredible Vermont marble, granite, bronze, and glass ‘windows’ that were designed to filter in enough light so that rare materials can be displayed without damage, according to ArchDaily. From the outside, the building looks as if it is completely solid.

The Beineck’s vast collection includes a Gutenberg Bible.

Libraries From Around The World - Beinecke Rare Book Flickr/Lauren Manning

11. Alexandria Library in Alexandria, Egypt

The original library of Alexandria was established in the third century B.C., and was one of largest and most significant libraries of the ancient world. When it was destroyed in the third century A.D., there were countless scrolls and books that were lost.

The new library of Alexandria was built in 2002 to pay homage to the openness of the original library. Built by Snøhetta architects, the building is designed like a sundial and tilts towards the Mediterranean Sea.

Best Libraries From Around The World - Alexandrina Library Flickr/bliink

12. Central Library in Seattle, Washington, USA

First opened in 2004, the 11-story glass and steel building in downtown Seattle was designed to be a reinvention of the traditional library. The contemporary building is not only a space dedicated to books, but is also an access point for all forms of media.

Designed by Rem Koolhass, the building combines “futuristic lines with the functionality of a library.” The interior of the building is notable for its large public spaces and natural light.

Best Libraries From Around The World - Central LibraryFlickr/_bclay

13. Trinity College Dublin Library in Dublin, Ireland

Famed for its ‘Long Room,’ the library of Trinity College library is home to the largest collection of books in Ireland.

The over 200-foot-long main room is covered in marble and dark wood pilasters. When it was first completed, the ‘Long Room’ had a flat ceiling, but the roof was raised to accommodate more books.

Best Libraries From Around The World - Trinity LibraryFlickr/nymo59

14. Sir Duncan Rice Library in Aberdeen, United Kingdom

The Sir Duncan Rice Library is the new library of the University of Aberdeen. The library incorporates 21st-century design, and has a huge spiraling atrium in its center.

The library gained a lot of attention for the range of sustainable features that were included in its design. The spiraling atrium lights up all eight floors — the building also has photovoltaic cells on its roof to convert the energy of light directly into electricity.

Libraries From Around The World - Sir Duncan Rice Library Flickr/kaysgeog

15. Sainte-Geneviève Library in Paris, France

The Sainte-Geneviève library is the main research and reference library for the students of the University of Paris.

Constructed in the mid-19th century by the famed architect Henri Labrouste, the library is well-known for its cast iron column reading room. The MoMA even described the library as a “temple of knowledge and a space for contemplation.”

Sainte Genevieve LibraryWikipedia

16. New York Public Library in New York, New York, USA

The New York Public Library has nearly 53 million items, and is the third largest library in the world. The incredible Beaux-Arts landmark was one of the largest marble structures in the US when it was built.

The Rose Main Reading Room of the library stretches nearly two city blocks. The reading room measures 297 feet long by 87 feet wide, and has 42 long oak tables for visitors to sit in.

Beautiful Libraries From Around The World - New York Public LIbraryFlickr/Alex Proimos

17. Kanazawa Umimirai Library in Kanazawa City, Japan

This three-story library in Japan is designed like a “cake box,” with large white hole-punched windows that light up the space. The library is meant to be a tranquil room, and the “punching walls” are meant to make it look like a forest of books.

“This environment would allow users to experience the joy of reading while surrounded by a treasure trove of books with a overwhelming physical presence, something that the convenience of electronic and digital books cannot offer,” the architects told ArchDaily.

Beautiful Libraries From Around The World - Kanazawa LibraryFlickr/Forgemind ArchiMedia

18. Royal Portuguese Reading Room in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Built in the 19th century, this gorgeous rooms is home to over 350,000 works — and the largest collection of Portuguese works outside of Portugal.

The library is known for its Neo-Manueline design, which “evokes the Gothic-Renaissance style that flourished during the time of the Portuguese Discoveries,” according to My Modern Met.

The room is completely covered in books, many of them rare works dating back to the 16th century. It’s the perfect destination for anyone who loves to be surrounded by beautiful books.

 Most Beautiful Libraries From Around The World - Royal Portuguese Reading Room

http://www.businessinsider.com/18-of-the-worlds-greatest-libraries-2014

mexican-dancers

Flickr/haveclipperswilltravel

A quarter, or 23%, of travelers from around the world never tip while on vacation, according to a new Expedia survey of 11,165 people across five continents. When to tip and how much to tip are topics of endless conversation, especially when visiting a new country and learning about the customs of the new destination.

The chart below shows which percentage of vacationers from each country indicated that they tip service providers while on holiday

Travelers Who Tip The Most Infographic

Travelers Who Tip The Most Infographic
Skift

Food servers are the most likely to receive a tip with 50 percent of respondents claiming that they typically tip in a restaurant.

Hotel staff were less likely to receive with approximately 36 percent of respondents stating that they tip for maid service, room service delivery and bellhops.

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/mexican-travelers-tip-the-most-2014-6#ixzz34MWCl5FP

Brightly costumed dolls representing Japan and Mexico in scenery from their lands at 'it’s a small world'

If you have ever visited Disneyland or Disney World, then chances are you have heard “It’s A Small World”. When you take the 12-15 minute ride in the little boats that meander throughout the various lands, you hear it many times & in many languages. In my case, I have been stuck in that attraction several times with my daughters in both Florida & in California. It was their favorite ride so we rode it as many times as we could possibly fit in each visit. The more you ride, the more likely you are to get stuck.  One of the fastest way to drive this mother crazy.

Fast forward 15 years and I have just purchased a new phone. My youngest daughter is helping me set up this new phone but with a few surprises unknown to me. Teenagers are so clever, aren’t they? So the first time of my daughters called me, the new phone rings with, can you guess? Yes, “It’s a Small World”!! They thought that it would drive me crazy-a short drive these days, I admit. That was 2 years ago & their little surprise has backfired because I love it. That song lets me know that it is one of my wonderful daughters calling. It brings a smile to my face every time and brings back some incredibly fun memories. It’s a blessing & a curse. LOL   SO thanks, my wee one! Or should I say Merci, Muchas gracias, Vielen Dank, Σας ευχαριστώ, Grazie, 感谢您, Takk, ありがとうございました。, Obrigado, Go raibh maith agat?

It’s a world of laughter, a world of tears. It’s a world of hopes and a world of fears. There’s so much we share…and a smile means friendship to everyone

To watch the video:  http://youtu.be/weZrqrN9Jp0

Written by brothers Richard and Robert Sherman

It’s a small world after all.

It’s a small world after all.

It’s a small world after all.

It’s a small, small world.  Thank you, Mr. Disney!

Walt Disney

 

 

Annalisa Weller, Realtor®, Certified International Property Specialist

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