Tuesday, 25 December 2012

SYDNEY



Sydney the most populous city in Australia is the state capital of NewSouth Wales. It stands on the Australian sea coast, Tasman Sea. . Actually the city of Sidney is built on the hills. The hills surround the Sydney harbor which is also known as Port Jackson. There are many beautiful parks in the hinterland. A few of the notable ones are Royal Botanic Garden and Hyde Park.

The people who are the inhabitants here in Sidney are called Sydney  siders. In the year 1770 James Cook set foot on Botany Bay situated in the Kurnell Peninsula and here he came in contact with ‘Gwegal’, the aboriginal community residing here. Later on under the direction of the British Government Arthur Phillip arrived Botany Bay with 11 ships in the month of January in 1788 but they realized that this place was not worth living for human habitation as there was scarcity of pure drinking  water and the soil was poor. As a result, Arthur Phillip was bound to establish a colony in Sydney Cove in the same year. After the lapse of two weeks of the founding of the colony it was intended to name the place  Albion but as a token of gratitude from Arthur Phillip it was named after the then British Secretary for Home, Thomas Townshend Lord Sydney as Lord Sydney nominated Arthur Phillip in establishing a colony there.The approximate population of the metropolitan area is 4.6 million as was estimated in the consensus of 2010.

It is suggested by the researchers that Australia has been inhabited by the Australians indigenous to this region for not less than 30,000 years. It is presumed that the land was inhabited by aboriginals (4,000-8,000 years ago) when the British people settled here. When asked where did they come from, they replied – Eora which means ‘from this place’. So the British people called them Eora. The people living here for centuries basically used three languages namely-Darug , Dharwal and Guringac and these languages were dialectically spoken by different clans living here.

But in an irony of fate small pox spread out in an epidemic form and the aboriginals died in large numbers and the situation was o grave that dead bodies were found floating having none to perform the rituals. The number of the aboriginals reduced to 10% of the total number estimated in 1788. There was protest against the British settlement in Pemulway in Botany Bay and in other places as well as they felt that their existence was under threat. it was Govornor Macquarie who took initiative to civilize as well as Christianize the aboriginals and here was a remarkable progress in establishing Sydney as a town in the truest sense of the term.

In course of time Sydney ha now developed as an important tourist spot around the globe for the following         
Main Tourist Attractions:
Sidney Opera House is a multi-art center in Sudney,New South Wales inAustralia. On June 28,2008 Sydney Opera House was declared World Heritage Site by UNESCO. It is very close to Sidney Harbour Bridge. Sydney Opera House is the busiest among the performing art houses of the world. The yearly performances amount to around 1500 and about 1.2 million people attend here.  
  Sidney Harbor Bridge: Sydney Harbour Bridge is an arch bridge made of steel with rail, road and pavement for the pedestrians connecting North Shore and Sydney Central Business District(CBD). The Bridge is also nicknamed The Cothanger for the very structure it embodies. It is the 5th longest arch bridge in the world. 
Luna Park: Luna Park is one of the two amusement parks of the world. It is situated on the north shore of Sydney Harbour. In the year 1935 the park was constructed at foot of Harbour Bridge. Earlier it was named Harbourside Amusement Park. The park was temporarily closed immediately after the Ghost Train Fire in 1979. This fire took away the lives of six children and one adult. It opened later on.

Health tip: First chew and then swallow half teaspoonful of Fennel Seeds after meals to get relief from gas. 

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

MALDIVES

Maldives is officially known as the Republic of Maldives. It is also known as Maldive Island. The very name of the country may have derived from the Sanskrit word Mahaldeeb (in Sanskrit ‘ Deeb’/ ‘Deeb’ means ‘ island’) and it is an island nation situated in the Indian Ocean consisting of 1,192 coral islands  of 26 attols    ( ‘attol’ means coral island ) of double chain ( ‘chain’ means a group of islands). Maldives is situated in the Lakshadweep sea( known also as Laccadive Sea) which is 400 km swouth-west  of India and 700 km south-west of Sri-lanka. In consideration of area and population Maldives is the smallest country in asia. The average level of height of the ground from the sea level is 1.5 meters and so it is the lowest country of the planet.
History :
Maldives had been colonized by Britain, the Netherlands and Portugal for a pretty long time. In linguistic  and cultural consideration the comparative study study suggests that the people were Dravidians who turned up there from Kerela in 300BC-300AD) and presumably they were fishermen by trade/profession. They are considered as the earliest settlers here from outside. It is also argued that Sindhis and Debals migrated here during the Indus Valley Civilization. The Sinhales also settled here.
The country existed as an independent Islamic Sultanate from 1153 to 1968 but it became a proctorate of the British from 1887 to 1965 on the basis of contract between the sultan and the British government of Ceylon. The internal administration restored to the sultan in exchange of tribute to the British government and in the military protection and the foreign policy making the British Government was the decision maker and there eas a promise by the British Government that the internal administration would not be intervened by them.
  Resturant Under Water: 
There is an astounding under sea water  restaurant named Ithaa. This is the first human made long glass dome undervwater where a person can dine and see the beauty under sea water. The restaurant is kept open seven days from 11 in the morning till late at night. The restaurant is situated at yhe Conrad Hilton Maldives Resort and Spa and the cost here is around 100 pounds per head. 
Buddhismm got entry into Maldives during the reign of Ashoka. It became a dominant religion in Maldives up to 12th century AD and the ancient kings of Maldives promoted the religion and the artistic excellence ( architecture and sculpture) which was the very embodiment of Buddhism at that period. Not only that prior to the advent of Buddhism the ritualistic tradition of venerating Surya was in vogue to the people of Maldives.
 
There is an inscription in the ancient edicts on the plates of copper that people in large numbers converted to Islam at the fag end of 12th century AD. There is a legendary reference that an Iranian saint of the city of Tabriz of Iran came here , subdued a demon, Rannamaari, and that power  he showed to subdue paved the way of convertion.
In 1965 on 26July on the basis of an agreement between His Majesty the Sultan Ibrahim Nasir Rannabandeyri Kilegefan and on behalf of HerMajesty Queen, British Ambassador, Sir Michael Walker the responsibility for defense and external affairs no longer remained a responsibility for the British and the island started enjoying her full political independence and sovereignty. Muhammad Fareed Didi chose to declare him a king rather than a Sultan for the following 3 years as the sultanate continued.
On 15 BNovember 1967 a vote was arranged in the parliament to decide whether the constitutional monarchy should come to stay or the country will turn into a republic. The result was in favour of republic and it fated the 853 years old sultanate to an end and the presidency rested on Ibrahim Nasir .
In the year 1978 Muhammad Abdul Gayoom was elected as president and continued his rule for the next 30 years without any opposition. Under his leadership Maldives developed and flourished as a very attractive tourist spot for the people globally.
System of Government:
The republic is run with an elected president in power for 5 years with a limit of two terms for a person as president. The president heads the cabinet and appoints executives of his cabinet and it is approved by the Peoples’ Majlis ( parliament). President is here both the heads of the government and of state. Though republic has been passaged by monarchy, power still has been restored to certain influential families of the republic even in some islands power has been restored to some families for generations.
Main attractions:
Tourism is the main income generating sector here and 90% of the government tax revenue is generated from tourism related taxes and import duties.
Religion:
Officially Islam is the state religion in Maldives. Open practice of any other religion is totally forbidden here and is subject to prosecution. According to the constitution “the republic is based on the principles of Islam” and a non-Muslim has no right to be a citizen in Maldives and “no law contrary to the principles of Islam can be applied”. In the year 2012 35 Buddhist and Hindu artifacts restored in the Maldives’ National Museum were smashed and all the pre-Islamic  history has totally been abolished.

Friday, 7 December 2012

AJANTA CAVES

The Ajanta caves are actually 30 rock cut Buddhist cave temples in a series in Aurangabad district of the province of Maharashtra in India. Its founding dates back to Second century BCE to 600 CE in the historical consideration. The paintings and the sculptures inscribed on the walls represent the Buddhist religious art rather it can be termed as the masterpieces of artistic excellence.
The paintings were built in two phases. The first groups were built around second century BCE and the later phases of building the caves span around 600. It is presumed that under the patronage of Satavahana dynesty (230 BCE to 220 CE) 9, 10, 12 and 15A  caves were built. There are controversies regarding the second phase of construction but it is said that the construction of the second phase was possible under the patronage of emperor Harishena belonging to the Vaktaka dnesty.
It is promulgated by the researchers that these caves were abandoned after the fall of Harishena and since then these temples have been abandoned and gradually got forgotten and during the intervening centuries the caves were hidden by the jungle grown around in course of time and were left unvisited, undisturbed and consequently forgotten.
But John Smith a British officer of the 28th cavalry discovered the cave no 10 while hunting tiger and the caves were then homes of nothing but bats, birds, and other animals. A little later of John Smiths’ discovery the Ajanta Caves became renowned for its impressive architecture, beautiful setting and for historical importance.
There are paintings on almost all the walls but in course of time and for human interference the art works have eroded and have become mostly fragmented but our minds peep back into the history of that glorious past as if we can see lively human habitation dedicated to artistic excellence and humane spiritual sublimation sitting in the caves at the very sight of them.
The Ajanta Caves were declared World Heritage Site in 1983. The location of the Ajanta caves is 75040’N 20030’ E. The distance of the Ajanta Caves is 107 km from Aurangabad district headquarters in Maharashtra.
The Ajanta Caves is kept open to the visitors of SAARC and BIMSTEC countries (Bangladesh, Bhutan, Srilanka, Nepal, Thailand & Mayanmar) against Rs 10 per head. Visitors of other countries have to pay $5 or Indian Rs 250 per head. Children up to 15 get free access. The Ajanta Caves has become a major tourist spot in India to the global people. 

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

MONTE CARLO



MONTE CARLO
Monte Carlo is a French word. Colloquially it is called Monte-Carl. Monte Carlo refers to an administrative area of Monaco, a large district as well, in France. Monte Carlo stands on the French Riviera which is the Mediterranean coast line and the Italian border. The world famous Place du Casino is situated here. There are four quarters in Monaco and these are Fontvieille, Monaco-ville, La condamine and mote Carlo. The population of Monte Carlo is 3,500.
History:
Monte Carlo was founded in the year 1866 and the name ‘Monte Carlo’ has its origin in Italian language and literally means ‘Mount Charles’, a prince then in power. People would utter the name of the prince, Charles iii of Monaco with horror. The history of the ruling family ‘Grimaldi’ and the area under their rule dates back to centuries and the Port of Monaco was first recorded in 43 BC with the historical reference of Julius Caesar who was then in search of Pompey centering his army at Monaco harbour. But the ‘Grimaldi’ family was overpowered and the area fell under the sovereignty of Genoa but after a lot of hardship the Grimaldies regained the rock in the year 1295 but the following years were very conflicting to them as the ruling family fell almost bankrupt in 1850s as the two major income generating towns Menton and Requebrune yielding orange, lemon and olives in plenty were put under the Savoyan.
Main attractions:
MONTE CARLO CASIN
 Monte Carlo Casino:      To see the prosperity of the German towns ‘Hamburg’ and ‘Baden-Baden’ from the income of casinos in 1856 Charles iii of Monaco ordered a casino to be built. He got it built in German style in 1862 at Condamine but it was proved as a total failure in generating income. After several shiftments of the casino and after the establishment of railway in 1868 the income generation from gambling started remarkably and Mone Carlo flourished incredibly in a short time.

Hotel de Paris:  In 1804 ‘Hotel de Paris’ was ordered to be established by Charles iii of Monaco on the western side of Palace de Casino. It is situated at the heart of Monte Carlo. The hotel is divided into four groups and there are 106 rooms with modern facilities based on the view around the environment.
Sports and Leisure:  There is hardly anyone who will not feel exited seeing Formula One Monaco Grand Prix motor race is held on the Circuit de Monaco. Boxing bout, the European Poker tour Grand Final is also held here. The main attractive visiting places are MonacoCathedral, the Napoleon Museum, the Princes’ Palace and the Oceanographic Museum.

Monte Carlo was divided into 3 municipalities by the Constitution in 1911 but in 1917 the three municipalities were unified into one and those former three were accorded the status of words. In continuation of this there are 10 wards in Monaco at present. Isn’t it attractive enough to pay a visit?

Friday, 23 November 2012

THE HIMALAYAS

THE HIMALAYAS(THE EVEREST)
The word ‘Himalaya is a Sanscrit word (‘Hima’ means ‘snow’+ ‘Alaya’ means ‘house’/’dwelling’) literally means ‘abode of snow’. This mountain has geographically divided the Indian subcontinent from the plateau of Tibet. Mount Everest is the highest mountain of the world. The highest of this mountain at the highest peak is 8884 meters (29,029ft) measured from the sea level . Mount Everest is situated in the Mahalangur section of the Himalayas. The great trigonometric Surveyor of British India first published the highest of Everest then known as Peak xv in 1856, 29,029 ft (8,840m). Five countries India, Nepal, Bhutan, Pakistan and People’s Republic of China have been abutted by the Himalayas . Many Himalayan peaks have been sacred to both the Hindus and Buddhists.
 In the year 1865 upon a recommendation by Andrew Waugh , the British Surveyor General of India named the highest peak of the mountain after his predecessor in the post Sir George Everest although the Tibetans had called the mountain “Chomolungama” for centuries. No plant life grows near the peaks of the mountains for high velocity of wind and for extreme cold weather. Another important cause is the scarcity of oxygen at that height. Many people climb Everest every year and in this attempt of climbing many fall sick and many die for sickness and for lack of oxygen. The problem breathing for want of oxygen results in brain damage. 
The major three rivers of the world the Ganges, the Indus and the Tsangpo Brahmaputra all initiated their journey near Kailas Mountain and the combined basin of these three rivers have become home to near about six hundred million people so far.
The Everest
 In Hinduism the Himalayas has been personified as Himavat, a god of snow and this reference can be found in the Mahabharata. This Himavat is referred to as the father of Ganga and Saraswati the demigoddess. They became rivers. It is believed in Hinduism that Mount Kailas is the abode of Shiva and he lives with his wife Parvati there. Himalaya has long been an abode ideal for meditation to the devotees of different religion. The Himalyas has been a place of religious significance to the Hindus, Jainas and Bhuddhists. The residence of Dalai Lama is in the Himalayan mountain range. There were 6,600 monasteries in Tibet. In Shigatse and in Lhasa the Muslims of Tibet had their mosques. 
 With the variation of climatic condition the flora and Fauna differ. In the Garwal Himalayan region the pine forest is invading into oak forest. The animals that are found in the Himalayan area, especially mammals, are Asian golden cat, brown boar, clouded leopard, Eurasian lynx etc. Barheaded goose, snow goose, golden eagle and lammergier are the most common birds indigenous to the Himalayas. Rhododendrons, oaks and violets are very common here.
 There are hundreds of lakes here in the Himalayan region. Some of the remarkable lakes are Gurudogmar in north Sikkim, Talicho Lake in Nepal and Tsongmo lake near Indo China border and attracts the tourists. 
This is the only natural gift to human being that has touched both ground and the sky simultaneously. 

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

ROME



Colosseum
Rome is an ancient city and the capital of Italy .It is the country’s fourth populous city in the European Union .The city is located in the Central Western portion of Italian Peninsula and stands on the river Tiber in the Lazio region in Italy .The city is also known as ‘The Eternal City’.                                    
The history of Rome spans more than two and a half thousand years since the founding of the city in 753 BC. Once it was the capital of Roman Kingdom, Roman Republic  and the Roman Empire and it was the most dominant power from 1st century  BC to 7th century AD. Rome is regarded as one of the birth places of Western Civilization.
Rome was ruled by Popes after the middle ages and under the leadership of those   popes the city turned into a center of Italian Renaissance as was true with Florence. In this regard Alexander vi and Leo x played a pivotal role.
In the year 2010 Rome has been ranked as a beta+world city. It has also been declared as the 28th most important global city which was the 11th most important global city in 2007. As regards assets and  branded city it is one of the most successful cities in the world so far.In Rome the most visited tourist museums are Vatican Museum and Colosseum Museum. Every year on an average 4 million tourists visit this museums.



WOLF FEEDING THE TWINS
The very well known legendary and mythical story about the founding of this city handed down by the ancient Romans is that Romulus and Remus were twin brothers. They are the central characters of the myth relating o the founding of the city, Rome. Rhea Silvia was their mother and Rhea was the daughter of Numitor who was the king of Alba Longa. Amulius ,the brother of Numitor, dethroned his brother and all the male heirs of Numitor and Rhea Silvia was forced to become vestal virgin and was sworn to chastity to make the power of Amulets  thornless. But in an irony of fate   Rhea Silvia conceived the twins by god Mars or by the demi-god Hercules. In due time the twins were born but Amulius had floated the twins abandoned to die in the river Tiber but for miraculous interventions the twins survived to kill him in course of time. It so happened coincidentally that a she wolf found them on the bank, suckled them and a woodpecker fed them. The two brothers remaining completely dark about their identity were fostered to manhood with great care by a shepherd and his wife. When they came to know their identity they killed Amulius the usurper and restored Numitor to power. Romulus was intent to found a city on the Hill Palatine while Remus wanted it to be founded on the Hill Aventine. To end the dispute both the brothers agreed to settle the dispute with the help of augury. But it so happened that both claimed the decision in his favour and got involved in fighting. Eventually Remus was killed and Romulus founded the city and named it Rome after himself. But the legend is not beyond controversy.  
In the chronology of history Rome became Republic in 509 BC. Within a few centuries Rome flourished as a great and popular city after the rule of the famous Augustus who is also known as Octavian. It flourished more when the Sabines, the Etruscans and the Semites were defeated by Rome in the third century BC.
NERO FIDDLES---------
The more formal and grand journey towards a flourishing condition of Rome started in the hands of Emperor Augustus(63 BC- AD14). Augustus founded ‘Principiate’, a system of monarchy headed by an emperor who holds power for life instead of making himself a dictator. Augustus started his work for development of Rome in respect of social, political and economic reform. He was a great patron of arts. Poets like Virgil, Propertius and Horace attended his court. Impressive magnificent buildings and palaces were built by him.
The followers of Augustus were Trajan, Caligula, Nero and Hadrian. Nero among them is most remarkable for his tyranny, cruelty and extravagance. The very well known proverb-“Nero fiddles while Rome burns” is reminiscent of the incident of the night of 18 to 19 July 64 AD.
 Today Rome is one of the most important tourist attractions around the globe. Colosseum is one of the most attractive spots for the tourists to visit. It is an elliptical  amphitheater the largest ever built at the heart of the city of Rome. It is made of concrete and stone. Its construction started in 72 AD when emperor Vespasian was in power and it came to a completion in 80 AD Titus in power. This amphitheater had the capacity to accommodate 50,000 spectators. The Colosseum was generally used for mock sea battles, animal hunts and for staging classical mythical dramas and so like. It is still present in the 21st century though partially ruined by earthquake and party damaged by stone robbers.

TRAVIE  FOUNTAIN


The fountain Travie in Trevi district in Rome is the largest Baroque fountain in the city and perhaps the most famous fountain in the world with 88.3 feet height and 65.6 feet width. There holds a traditional legend that if visitors throw a coin into the fountain their return to Rome is ensured. It is one of the most attractive tourist attractions to the people around the globe.  
Rome is really a wonder and attracts the people to see,learn and realize the spirit of human intention incarnate in art forms throughout the centuries.It is really superb.