May 30, 2016

2586 VIETNAM (Red River Delta) - Hanoi Opera House

Important architectural landmark of the capital city of Vietnam, the Hanoi Opera House  was erected by the French colonial administration between 1901 and 1911 in eclectic style, with important Neoclassical elements, modeled on the Palais Garnier. It had depended on touring artists performing French and Italian repertoire during the colonial period for a mainly French audience. After the departure of the French, it became the scene for political events, as well as the scene of street fighting during the war.

2585 ROMANIA (Alba) - The Alba Iulia Citadel

Since 1541, the town of Alba Iulia was the capital of the Eastern Hungarian Kingdom, and then of the Principality of Transylvania, until 1690, when became part of the Habsburg Monarchy and was renamed Karlsburg, in honor of Charles VI, Holy Roman Emperor between 1711 and 1740. During his reign, between 1716 and 1735, two Swiss fortification architects built the citadel Alba Carolina, with seven bastions in a stellar shape.

May 29, 2016

0011, 2584 CANADA (Ontario) - Downtown Toronto

2584 Downtown Toronto seen from the Western Channel,
with CN Tower and Rogers Centre

Posted on 13.10.2011, 29.05.2016
Located entirely within the former municipality of Old Toronto, Downtown Toronto is approximately bounded by Bloor Street to the north, Lake Ontario to the south, the Don River to the east, and Bathurst Street to the west. The area is made up of the city's largest concentration of skyscrapers and businesses. Toronto has a prominent skyline and, as of 2015, has the third most skyscrapers in North America exceeding 200m in height, behind New York City and Chicago, respectively.

0011 Downtown Toronto in evening
In the 1970s, Toronto experienced major economic growth and surpassed Montreal to become the largest city in Canada. Many international and domestic businesses relocated to Toronto and created massive new skyscrapers in downtown. The area's First Canadian Place is the tallest building in Canada at height of 298m. The CN Tower, once the tallest free-standing structure in the world, remains the tallest such structure in the Americas, standing at 553.33m. Other notable buildings include Scotia Plaza, TD Centre, Commerce Court, the Royal Bank Plaza, The Bay's flagship store, and the Fairmont Royal York Hotel.

2583 BELARUS - Kupalle Holiday

2583 "Kupalle Holiday" (1921-1922), painting by Mikhail Filipovich

Kupala Night, also known as Ivan Kupala Day (Feast of St. John the BaptistBelarusian: Купалле / Kupalle), is celebrated in Ukraine, Belarus, Poland, Baltic countries and Russia currently on the night of 6/7 July in the Gregorian or New Style calendar, which is 23/24 June in the Julian or Old Style calendar still used by many Orthodox Churches. The celebration relates to the summer solstice when nights are the shortest and includes a number of Slavic rituals.

2582 ROMANIA (Braşov) - The Citadel on Straja Hill

Braşov has a unique location at the feet of the Carpathian mountains at one of the most important mountain-passes, so it had to develop a strong defense system. The Citadel on Straja Hill, or Citadel Hill as it's called today, was part of this system, even if it is located outside Braşov, aiming to observe and stop invaders approaching the main fortress of the city. It is thus known as the guarding fortress or the little fortress. Moreover, "strajă" means guardian in Romanian.

May 28, 2016

1491, 2581 MEXICO - Maya people

2581 Maya peoples

Posted on15.03.2015, 28.05.2016
The overarching term "Maya" is a collective designation to include the native peoples in southern Mexico and northern Central America that share some degree of cultural and linguistic heritage. In other words, the term embraces many distinct ethnic groups that each have their own particular traditions, cultures, and historical identity. The pre-Columbian Maya population was approximately eight million, and despite the centuries of massacres, slavery and diseases, in nowadays there are an estimated seven million living in this area.

1491 A Mayan little girl

The largest populations of contemporary Maya inhabit Guatemala, Belize, and the western portions of Honduras and El Salvador, as well as large segments of population within the Mexican states of Yucatán, Campeche, Quintana Roo, Tabasco, and Chiapas. One of the largest group of modern Maya can be found in Mexico's Yucatán state and the neighboring states of Campeche and Quintana Roo. They commonly identify themselves simply as "Maya" with no further ethnic subdivision, and speak the language which anthropologists term "Yucatec Maya".

2580 FRANCE - Bernadette Soubirous

Marie-Bernarde "Bernadette" Soubirous (7 January 1844 - 16 April 1879) was the firstborn daughter of a miller from Lourdes, France, and is venerated as a saint in the Catholic Church. Soubirous is best known for the Marian apparitions of a "small young lady" who asked for a chapel to be built at the nearby garbage dump of the cave-grotto at Massabielle where apparitions are said to have occurred between 11 February and 16 July 1858. She would later receive recognition when the lady who appeared to her identified herself as the Immaculate Conception.

2579 THAILAND (Prachuap Khiri Khan Province) - Hua Hin Railway Station

Hua Hin Railway Station is one of the most important stations on the Southern Line, the longest railway line in Thailand. The Southern Line third phase between Cha-am Station to Hua Hin was opened in November 1911, and the line continued to Wang Phong Station in January 1914. The original station building was built in 1910, and rebuilt in 1926, by Prince Purachatra Jayakara (former commander of the Royal State Railways of Siam) to the current Victorian building today.

2578 CANADA (British Columbia) - The Totem Poles in Stanley Park in Vancouver

Stanley Park borders the downtown of Vancouver, and is almost entirely surrounded by waters of Vancouver Harbour and English Bay. It has a long history and was one of the first areas to be explored in the city. The land was originally used by indigenous peoples for thousands of years before British Columbia was colonized by the British during the 1858 Fraser Canyon Gold Rush. For many years after colonization, the future park with its abundant resources would also be home to nonaboriginal settlers.

2577 ROMANIA (Braşov) - The Făgăraş Citadel

Făgăraş, together with Amlaş, constituted during the Middle Ages a traditional Romanian local-autonomy region in Transylvania, on the Olt River. The castle in Făgăraş, whose construction began in 1310 and continued through successive additions until the middle of the 18th century, was preceded by a wooden fort, surrounded by a moat and wave of land, attested to 12th century. This fort, evidence of local feudal political organization as a voivodat, was destroyed in the middle of the 13th century.