Thursday, October 13, 2011
Egypt one will be left speechless as they look out the window and see the contrast of the setting. Out one side of the plane, you can see the vast arid desert which seems to be never ending. the choreographed chaos here hits you like a ton of bricks. It doesn’t take long, however, to acclimatise to Cairo’s wall of noise, snarl of traffic, cry of hawkers and blanket of smog, and get drawn into the hypnotising charm of this pulsating metropolis. Known to its nearly 20 million residents as Um ad-Dunya (Mother of the World), modern Cairo is a hotchpotch of recent growth barely superimposed on a dense bed of history. Wander down to Islamic Cairo and you’ll be sucked in through the looking glass to a bygone medieval era. Head out west to Giza’s famed pyramids and the time warp sets you back a full 4000 years.
January 7 (0.3);
July 0 (0)
Average monthly mm (inches)
+2 hours UTC (Coordinated Universal Time)
City proper 6,800,992
Metro area 11,146,000
23 meters (75 feet)
January 19°/9°C (66°/48°F);
July 34°/22°C (94°/71°F)
Average daily High/Low °C (°F)
Monday, October 10, 2011
Boulders Beach near Simon's Town is known for its colony of African Penguins. Surfing is popular and the city hosts the Red Bull Big Wave Africa surfing competition every year.The city has several notable cultural attractions. The Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, built on top of part of the docks of the Port of Cape Town, is the city's most visited tourist attraction. It is also one of the city's most popular shopping venues, with several hundred shops and the Two Oceans Aquarium. Part of the charm of the V&A, as it is locally known, is that the Port continues to operate and visitors can watch ships enter and leave. The V&A also hosts the Nelson Mandela Gateway, through which ferries depart for Robben Island. It is possible to take a ferry from the V&A to Hout Bay, Simon's Town and the Cape Fur Seal colonies on Seal and Duiker Islands. Several companies offer tours of the Cape Flats, a mostly Coloured township, and Khayelitsha, a mostly black township.
Competing teams of minstrels parade in brightly coloured costumes, performing Cape Jazz, either carrying colourful umbrellas or playing an array of musical instruments. The Artscape Theatre Centre is the main performing arts venue in Cape Town.
The city also encloses the 36 hectare Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden that contains protected natural forest and fynbos along with a variety of animals and birds. There are over 7000 species in cultivation at Kirstenbosch, including many rare and threatened species of the Cape Floristic Region. In 2004 this Region, including Kirstenbosch, was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Cape Town's transport system links it to the rest of South Africa; it serves as the gateway to other destinations within the province. The Cape Winelands and in particular the towns of Stellenbosch, Paarl and Franschhoek are popular day trips from the city for sightseeing and wine tasting. Whale watching is popular amongst tourists: Southern Right Whales and Humpback Whales are seen off the coast during the breeding season (August to November) and Bryde's Whales and Killer Whale can be seen any time of the year
Thursday, October 6, 2011
The city also retains a vast variety of Roman and Byzantine monuments, as well as a smaller number of remaining Ottoman monuments projecting the city's long history across the centuries. Athens is home to two UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the Acropolis of Athens and the medieval Daphni Monastery. Landmarks of the modern era, dating back to the establishment of Athens as the capital of the independent Greek state in 1833, include the Hellenic Parliament (19th century) and the Athens Trilogy consisting of the National Library of Greece, the Athens University and the Academy of Athens.
Athens has been continuously inhabited for at least 7000 years. By 1400 BC the settlement had become an important centre of the Mycenaean civilization and the Acropolis was the site of a major Mycenaean fortress whose remains can be recognised from sections of the characteristic Cyclopean walls. Unlike other Mycenaean centers, such as Mycenae and Pylos, it is not known whether Athens suffered destruction in about 1200 BC, an event often attributed to a Dorian invasion, and the Athenians always maintained that they were "pure" Ionians with no Dorian element. However, Athens, like many other Bronze Age settlements, went into economic decline for around 150 years following this.
Iron Age burials, in the Kerameikos and other locations, are often richly provided for and demonstrate that from 900 BC onwards Athens was one of the leading centers of trade and prosperity in the region. The leading position of Athens may well have resulted from its central location in the Greek world, its secure stronghold on the Acropolis and its access to the sea, which gave it a natural advantage over inland rivals such as Thebes and Sparta.
By the 6th century BC, widespread social unrest led to the reforms of Solon. These would pave the way for the eventual introduction of democracy by Cleisthenes in 508 BC. Athens had by this time become a significant naval power with a large fleet, and helped the rebellion of the Ionian cities against Persian rule.
Some of the neo-classical structures to be found are public buildings erected during the mid-19th century, under the guidance of Theophil Freiherr von Hansen and Ernst Ziller, and include the Athens Academy, Athens City Hall, Greek Parliament, Old Parliament (1875–1932) (Now the National Historical Museum), University of Athens, and Zappeion Hall.
Beginning in the 1930s, the International style and other architectural movements such as Bauhaus and Art Deco began to exert an influence on almost all Greek architects, and many buildings both public and private were constructed in accordance with these styles. Localities with a great number of such buildings include Kolonaki, and some areas of the centre of the city; neighbourhoods developed in this period include Kypseli.
In the 1950s and 1960s during the vast extension and development of Athens, modern architecture played a very important role. The centre of Athens was largely rebuilt, leading to the demolition of a number of neoclassical buildings.
- Omonoia Square, (Greek: is the oldest square in Athens. It is surrounded by hotels and fast food outlets, and contains a train station used by the Athens Metro and the Ilektrikos, appropriately named Omonoia Station. The square often becomes the focus for celebration of sporting victories, as seen after the country's winning of the Euro 2004 and the Eurobasket 2005 tournaments.
- Metaxourgeio (Greek: Μεταξουργείο) is a neighborhood of Athens, Greece. The neighborhood is located south of the historical center of Athens, between Kolonos to the east and Kerameikos to the west, and north of Gazi. Metaxourgeio is frequently described as a transition neighborhood. After a long period of abandonment in the late 20th century, the area is acquiring a reputation as an artistic and fashionable neighborhood due to the opening of many art galleries, museums, and trendy restaurants and cafes. Moreover, local efforts to beautify and invigorate the neighborhood have reinforced a budding sense of community and artistic expression.
National Park is punctuated by well-marked paths, gorges, springs, torrents and caves dotting the protected area. Hiking and mountain-biking in all four mountains remain popular outdoor activities for many residents of the city. The National Garden of Athens was completed in 1840 and is a green refuge of 15.5 hectares in the center of the Greek capital. It is to be found between the Parliament and Zappeion buildings, the latter of which maintains its own garden of seven hectares.
Parts of the city centre have been redeveloped under a masterplan called the Unification of Archeological Sites of Athens, which has also gathered funding from the EU to help enhance the project. The landmark Dionysiou Aeropagitou street has been pedestrianised, forming a scenic route. The route starts from the Temple of Olympian Zeus at Vasilissis Olgas Avenue, continues under the southern slopes of the Acropolis near Plaka, and finishes just beyond the Temple of Hephaestus in Thiseio.
Wednesday, October 5, 2011
Bangkok Airways announced it will take off at the Suvarnabhumi Airport from September 21st onwards – a week prior to the official opening of the mega airport on September 28th. This first phase of the Boutique Airline’s operation will include flights to and from Sukhothai, Chiang Mai, Samui, Jinghong (Xixuangbanna), and Shenzhen. For more information visit: Bangkok Airways.
There have been a number of recent airport moves in the Asia-Pacific: Seoul, Hong Kong airport, Nagoya and Kuala Lumpur airport - but none involved the volume of equipment in an airport the size of Don Muang, believed to be the largest in the Asia-Pacific in terms of aircraft movement. the relocation involved a military-style logistical exercise that began with an inventory and analysis of the total volume of equipment, a plan to identify where it would be loaded and unloaded, as well as transport routes and potential bottlenecks.
Five business units, including catering and cargo, plus the operations centre, will have to transferred. At stake are thousands of tools, spare parts, engines, cargo containers, pallets, loading/unloading equipment, kitchenware, cranes, forklifts, cabin items, IT hardware, aircraft-moving vehicles, and more.
These have been classified into eight "packaging" units and will be transported via 2,928 trips between the two airports, mostly by 10-wheel trucks.
Tuesday, October 4, 2011
Bangkok is the capital, largest urban area and primary city of Thailand. Known in Thai as Krung Thep Maha Nakhon pronounced Krung Thep [listen] (help·info), meaning "city of angels" for short, it was originally a small trading post on the west bank of the lower Chao Phraya River during the Ayutthaya Kingdom. The city is more formally called "Phra Nakhon" (Thai: พระนคร), referring to the original boundaries of the 18th century, while the name Krungthep Mahanakorn includes the urban areas which have since grown. Still most Thais and foreigners generally call the city by its original name of Bangkok.
The city however, continues to lack a green belt development as economic activity continues to pour into the capital, resulting in massive housing projects along the suburbs.
Bangkok is known for its large green sections within the city centre, including the large forest park between Yannawa and Samut Prakan. This part of the city covers an area of over 50 km2 (19 sq mi). and is intended to buffer the CBD from the large industries of the west and south of Metropolitan Bangkok. Other areas include Bung Makkasan, an urban city buffer for residences, sections of many major roads which have unbuilt swamps and green fields. Some of these areas are intentionally undeveloped for protecting against urbanization, while others are land lost during the Asian Financial Crisis.
the landscape around greater Bangkok, but have done little to overcome the notorious traffic jams on Bangkok's surface roads as private vehicle usage continues to outstrip infrastructure development.
Due to a large number of traffic jams in Bangkok, the elevated highway (Thai: ทางด่วน, RTGS: thang duan, "express way"), linking most road networks in Bangkok together, is another choice for the rush.
A regular bus service is provided by the Bangkok Mass Transit Authority (BMTA) and it operates throughout Bangkok as well as to adjoining provinces. Most routes do not have service late in the evening, but some routes operate around the clock. Public buses are cheap, with a minimum fare of 7 baht to most destinations within metropolitan Bangkok. Air-conditioned buses have minimum and maximum fares of 11 and 24 baht, respectively.
On the birthday of HM King Rama IX, 5 December 1999, an elevated two-line Skytrain (officially called BTS) metro system was opened. The remains of the failed BERTS (Hopewell) project can still be seen all the way from the main railroad station out towards Don Mueang Airport. Due to the Asian financial crisis of 1997 construction was halted and the concrete pillars were left unused.
The MRT subway system opened for use in July 2004. The MRT connects the northern train station of Bang Sue to the Hua Lamphong central railway station near the city centre, while also going through the eastern part of Bangkok. It connects to the BTS system at BTS stations Mo Chit, Asok, and Sala Daeng.
Bangkok is considered to be one of the world's tourist hotspots. Bangkok is Thailand's major tourist gateway, which means that the majority of foreign tourists arrive in Bangkok. The city boasts some of the country's most visited historical venues such as the Grand Palace, Wat Pho, and Wat Arun. There are numerous projects to maintain Bangkok's historic sites in the Rattanakosin area and river districts.
For destinations in the southwest and the west, buses leave from the Southern Bus Terminal, west of the city in the Thonburi area. For destinations in the southeast, such as Pattaya, Ko Samet and Ko Chang, buses leave from the Eastern Bus Terminal at Ekkamai. For all destinations north and northeast, the Northern Bus Terminal is at Mo Chit. Bangkok's less accessible southern terminal was recently moved even farther out. Though Bangkok is well connected to other cities, getting to the bus terminals often are a challenge in themselves.
There are numerous companies that pr\ovide bus services within Bangkok Metropolitan Region. The main operator, Bangkok Mass Transit Authority, has a service area covering Bangkok and its suburban areas in the adjacent provinces of Nonthaburi, Samut Prakan, Pathum Thani, Nakhon Pathom, and Samut Sakhon.
It was the 18th busiest airport in the world, second busiest in Asia by passenger volume, 15th busiest in the world and fourth busiest in Asia in international passenger volume. Don Mueang consistently ranked 19th in the world in cargo traffic, and seventh in the Asia-Pacific region. Don Mueang is considered to be one of the world's oldest international airports, its opening in March 1914 making it almost twenty years older than London Heathrow. It has three terminals and is located about 30 km (19 mi) north from the heart of Bangkok.
On 28 September 2006, Suvarnabhumi Airport (IATA: BKK; ICAO: VTBS), became Bangkok's official international airport, replacing Don Mueang. Pronounced Suwannaphum (RTGS), or loosely Su-wan-na-poom, the airport is located southeast of the city center in Bang Phli district, Samut Prakan Province. The progress of Suvarnabhumi Airport dates back to the early 1970s when a large plot of land 8,000 acres (3,237 ha) (32 km²) was bought. A student uprising in October of the same year prevented further progress with the development when the military government of Thanom Kittikachorn was subsequently overthrown. After several military coups and the Asian financial crisis of 1997, construction finally began in 2002, after five years of clearing the site. The first flights landed in September 2006, shortly after another military coup. Its two parallel runways are connected by the five concourses of the main terminal building.