31. 08. 2012.

A Mysterious Portrait Of A Maiko

Vivid crimson lips and white make-up are the trademarks
of the stylized beauty of a maiko, captured in detail
as she prepares to perform a Shinto offertory dance during
Gion Matsuri.

Its (relatively) been a while since I posted a card from Japan! I thank haniwa for this beauty and the coolest map stamp.<3>

Misstigri - La Parisienne

One of the many beautiful illustrations by Misstigri...I sure do wish to receive more. Thank you Steff, and of course for the great Europa stamp :))

Annapurna, Nepal

Annapurna is a 55-km-long massif in the Himalayas in north-central Nepal, its highest peak being Annapurna I (8091m) and including thirteen additional peaks over 7000 m. It is also home to world-famous trek The Annapurna Circuit whose total length varies between 160-230 km, its highest crossing being Thorung La (5416m).
Again thanks go to Ash, who made me really happy with these exotic views at the start of my postcrossing journey :)) I really envy him on such an incredible experience..!

28. 08. 2012.

Views Of Australia

Before a short break, some gorgeous views of 'down under' :)
The 1st postcard shows The Twelve Apostles, tha last bits of the beautiful state Victoria. All sent with a cute koala stamp. Thanks to Ash :))

26. 08. 2012.

Al Ain, UAE

Al Ain is also known as Garden City - it is surrounded by seven oasis fed by natural springs. There is a testimony to numerous prehistoric cultures, notably from the Bronze Age and the Iron Age; for example circular stone tombs (ca 2500 B.C.), wells and a wide range of adobe constructions.  Hili moreover features one of the oldest examples of the sophisticated aflaj irrigation system which dates back to the Iron Age.
These are all descriptions of the UAE's only Unesco site - but upon closer research I have concluded that these postcards couldnt qualify for my collection...nevertheless its great to have them, thanks Ayn :))

The Belogradchik Rocks, Bulgaria

The Belogradchik Rocks are a group of strange shaped sandstone and conglomerate rock formations located on the western slopes of the Balkan Mountains (Stara Planina) near the town of Belogradchik in northwest Bulgaria. Many rocks have fantastic shapes and are associated with interesting legends.
So much to see in Bulgaria...This site is on the Unesco's tentative list. Thanks so much again Lilia :) (was lucky to tag!)

American Flamingo, Trinidad And Tobago

Beautiful flamingo, thank you Nalini for the card and pretty stamp :))
There are six species of flamingos, two in the Old World and four in the New World. The most widespread is the Greater Flamingo, which can even be seen in many southern Europe countries! A fact not known to me until now (thank you again postcrossing for teaching me things :)) I wish they'd decide to fly across from Italy heh.

UNESCO - Spišský Hrad, Slovakia

As far as Europe is concerned, Slovakian postcards are a bit harder to get than most. And then especially Unesco. But there are good fairies of postcrossing who surprise you out of the blue...thanks so much Michaela for my first Slovakian Unesco!! :))
Spiš Castle is one of the largest castle sites in Europe, situated in eastern Slovakia above the town of Spišské Podhradie. It was built in the 12th century and was a centre of the Szepes County of the Kingdom of Hungary. In 1780 the castle burned down, and has been in ruins ever since; it was partly reconstructed in the second half of the 20th century.

Huangguoshu Waterfall, China

Huangguoshu Waterfall, or "Yellow-Fruit Tree Waterfalls", is located on the Baishui River, near Anshun City in Guizhou province, southern China. It is the biggest (not the tallest!) waterfall in Asia. Would be cool to join these people for a walk eh? :)

Havana Club

Cuba is a country on everyone's travelling wishlist. Here is a glimpse of it :) thanks Hanna!

25. 08. 2012.

Rovinj, Croatia

A gorgeous sunset view of Rovinj and a cute donkey is a surprise card from Adi :) Rovinj is an Istrian town situated on the western coast of the peninsula. I have been there once for a day, and i wish to visit again because its gorgeous! Hvala Adi xD

UNESCO - Piazza San Pietro in Rome, Italy

There is a whole series of postcards of Rome in black/white with accented yellowish hues, which i think is a great idea and i love this view! I have tagged for this card, thanks selphie :)

Octopus In Hanauma Bay, Hawaii, USA

I think octopuses are among the least attractive but the most fascinating creatures. Try finding out more about them - you just can't stop gasping and wowing! Mine was a similar reaction to this photo as well, its amazing isn't it?
I was surprised to learn that all octopuses are venomous! One of them, blue-ringed octopus, is even deadly to humans. The largest is the Giant Pacific Octopus, which has an arm span of up to 4.3 meters, brr. I've once seen a TV programme about octopuses' intelligent behaviour, and was flabbergasted with their possibility to squeeze through the tiniest holes..!
I was so happy to arrange a swap for this card, thanks Julia :)

edit: ok i was criticised because i didn't mention how tasty they are..! hehh. when done right, its delicious ;)

Les ânes de Benou, France

Donkeys from Plateau de Benou in the Pyrénées is a wonderful surprise from dear Fabienne, who has constantly been adding to my donkey collection, thank you so much xD This little family is just so cute! And the sports stamp is fantastic, i am always superhappy to get different french stamps to the definitive ones :)

24. 08. 2012.

African Dancers, Kenya

This is a surprise card from a travel agency! I love it :)))

A few months ago there was a competition arranged by Croatian travel agency Da Da Da, Qatar Airways and Intrepid Travel - the task was to make a motivational video for travelling, using own footage and/or photos. The prize? Trip to Tanzania and Kenya! No greater inspiration possible ;) As I had no experience whatsoever with making videos it was quite a challenge, but in the end I am pretty happy with my 'baby' (although I didn't even enter the first 10 places, but the journey was interesting!) Now let me figure out how to post it here...

Kirdiy - Window Chatter

'Women have two major problems: nothing to wear, and small wardrobes'. :)
Last of the three Kirdiy cards from my swap with dear Marina, who always writes such nice warm messages and uses nice stamps - thank you very much for enriching my collection :))) Again the curiosity of different cancellations..!

21. 08. 2012.

Tirana, Albania

Tiranë is the largest city and capital of Albania, founded under Ottomans in the 15th century. It became a capital in 1920 and counts 400 000 inhabitans.
This postcard shows the main plaza Skanderbeg Square, named after the Albanian national hero whose statue marks the centre of the square. I wasn't aware at the time that my friend is going to Albania so this card came as a complete surprise - first w/s from this unique country, and oh what a gorgeous stamp - thank you Mishek! xD

Beirut, Lebanon

And here is something from my 'archives', a view of the city and country that i'd really love to visit one day <3>Beirut is the capital and largest city of Lebanon, first mentioned in ancient Egyptian letters from the 15th cent. BC; it has been inhabited continuously ever since.
This card was sent to me by my former roommate in London - I was stoked that he remembered my passion for postcards! It was and still remains to be my only w&s postcard from this beautiful country.

15. 08. 2012.

Elephant Festival, India

Elephant Festival is a festival celebrated in Jaipur city in Rajasthan state in India.  It is held on the day of Holi festival, usually in the month of March.The festival features Elephant polo and Elephant Dance. The owners proudly embellish their elephants with vibrant colors, jhools (saddle cloth) and heavy jewellery.
It sounds like an event definately worth seeing! Thank you dear Sita for completing this card with an elephant stamp :))

UNESCO - Te Wahipounamu - Milford Sound, New Zealand

Te Wāhipounamu is a WH Site situated in the south-west corner of the New Zealand's South Island. It covers an area of 26,000 km² and incorporates four national parks - one of them is Fiordland NP, Milford Sound being its most visited fjord. The Māori named the sound Piopiotahi after the thrush-like piopio bird, now extinct.
Milford Sound runs 15 kilometres inland from the Tasman Sea and is surrounded by sheer rock faces that rise 1,200 metres (3,900 ft) or more on either side. Its waters are frequented by seals, penguins, dolphins, and sometimes even whales!
This absolutely stunning view (and another reminder why I fell in love with New Zealand before actually going there) is a wonderful surprise from dear Adrienne - and the set of stamps is great, thanks so much!! xD

10. 08. 2012.

UNESCO - Dorset And East Devon Coast, UK

Known as the Jurassic Coast, the Dorset and East Devon coast is designated a WH Site by Unesco. Rich in fossil remains, the area is known for its dinosaur footprints, fossil forest and famous landmarks such as Durdle Door, Old Harry Rocks and Golden Cap. Unspoilt but accessible, this coastline offers important opportunities for research, education and the enjoyment of superb scenery.
Both cards were received in the same week, and with great stamps - thank you both, Dave and Lucy!

09. 08. 2012.

Bathing Ghats In Varanasi, India

Varanasi or Banaras is a city in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, regarded as a holy city by Hindus, Buddhists and Jains. There are nearly 100 ghats i.e. steps that lead to the holy river, where Hindus perform bathing rituals believing that the Ganges remits sins.
Amazing sight, thank you once again Nagi :)
Oh and how amazing is the stamp?! It depicts Rath Yatra, an annual Hindu car festival held in Puri, Orissa state.