Dec 29, 2010


I found this postcard in my mailbox yesterday. As soon as I turned it over, I recognized the name of the sender! Craig from Michigan and I have exchanged cards as Private Swap [he had send me the Statue of Liberty] a couple of months ago and now he was sending me a card via postcrossing [US-939419]!! That's a bit funny :)

Some general info about Michigan state you can see here.
Michigan's tourists spend $17.5 billion per year in the state, supporting 193,000 tourism jobs. Michigan's tourism website ranks among the busiest in the nation. Destinations draw vacationers, hunters, and nature enthusiasts from across the United States and Canada. Michigan is fifty percent forest land, much of it quite remote. The forests, lakes and thousands of miles of beaches are top attractions. Event tourism draws large numbers to occasions like the Tulip Time Festival and the National Cherry Festival. [wikipedia]

Dec 23, 2010

Merry Xmas and Happy New Year

Merry Xmas and Happy New Year from Alexios from Hong Kong :)

Dec 20, 2010

I amsterdam | Netherlands

This is a postcard I like very much! Marielle from Amsterdam sent it to me via postcrossing [NL-508835]. She writes me that the canal on the card is in the center of Amsterdam and has been added as Unesco whs this year!! And she continues saying : "I wonder what year this picture was taken, since the last few years it hasn't been cold enough to go ice skating on the canals, but maybe we can do it this year!" Well, I really think that this year has much  more cold than the last few, so I believe that the canals will be frozen enough to ice skate on them :)

Amsterdam became a metropolis since the second half of the sixteenth century. Amsterdam now hosts more than 750,000 residents from 175 different countries. 37% of the population belong to an ethnic minority. There is an open and tolerant atmosphere in the city.

Amsterdam has a temperate climate with mild winters, cool summers and precipitation throughout the year. A good climate for the city makes it easy to visit throughout the year. In the city you can discover something new each time, did you know that aside from 6 windmills there are 600,000 bicycles? In one of the 51 museums is very much to see and enjoy. Traditionally, Amsterdam was a trading city. In order to be successful in trade, good social networks were indispensable. Furthermore, it was crucial to the city and its inhabitants that land and water were developed and maintained. A tolerant and open society as such, attracts people from every corners of the world; and these in turn must feel that their place in the city is protected.

Dec 19, 2010

Avenue de l'Opéra | France

This is another old card dated back to 27 September 1951. It shows Avenue de l' Opera in Paris, France.
The Avenue de l'Opéra is a Haussmanian avenue situated in the centre of Paris. It runs from the Louvre to the Palais Garnier, which was Paris's main opera until it was replaced by the Opéra Bastillein 1989. Unlike most Parisian avenues, there are no trees. This is the result of a compromise between Haussmann and Charles Garnier, the architect of the Opera House, who desired the best view possible of the main facade of the Opera at the end of the avenue. He did not want the view to be obstructed by the leaves and branches.

Meteora, suspended in the air

ok...I think this postcard shows the true view of Meteora.. The previous card of Meteora is not that beautiful.  This one is absolutely breathtaking!! In the center you can see the Great Meteoron.

Spectacularly perched atop rocky pinnacles in Thessaly, the Meteora monasteries are among the most striking sights in Greece. The name Meteora (Μετεωρα) is Greek for "suspended in the air", which perfectly describes these six remarkable Greek Orthodox monasteries. The sandstone peaks were first inhabited by Byzantine hermits in the 11th century, who clambered up the rocks to be alone with God.

Dec 18, 2010

Stockholm, Venice of the North

Stockholm is built across 14 islands and is often called the Venice of the North. With more foreign visitors than any other city in Scandinavia it is also considered to be the Capital of Scandinavia. Stockholm is situated at the point where the vast Lake Mälaren flows into the Baltic Sea and was built on this strategic spot in the mid 13th century, enabling the founder to tax merchant vessels going in and out of the lake.
As water covers one third of the city area, the maritime life is an important aspect of the city. There are plenty of bridges, marinas and locks. The water is so clean that you can drink it and catch salmon in the middle of the city. The climate is very much conditioned by the sea winds, so even the warmest summer day will be contingent upon the sea breeze finding its way into the city streets.
Some basic facts: 1,3 million people live in the greater Stockholm area. The average temperature in Stockholm is around -2 C (28 F) in January and about 18 C (64 F) in July. [link]

Süleymaniye Mosque | Turkey

This multiview postcard of Süleymaniye Mosque was sent to me by Cuneyt from Turkey as a private swap!

The Süleymaniye Mosque (Turkish: Süleymaniye Camii) is an Ottoman imperial mosque located on the Third Hill of Istanbul, Turkey. It is the second largest mosque in the city, and one of the best-known sights of Istanbul. The Süleymaniye Mosque was built on the order of Sultan Süleyman (Süleyman the Magnificent) "was fortunate to be able to draw on the talents of the architectural genius of Sinan Pasha" (481 Traditions and Encounters: Brief Global History). The construction work began in 1550 and the mosque was finished in 1558.


 Last weekend I went to Ioannina, a beautiful city in Northern Greece for a wedding. On our way back we stopped at Metsovo to have lunch. Metsovo is a typical Northern Greek village. All the houses are made of stone and they have red roofs. It was freezing cold, but it worthed it! We even tasted some local dishes, which were delicious :)

Dec 16, 2010

Mont Choisy Beach

The third postcard fromTasneem from mauritius. This card shows Mont Choisy beach in the north of Mauritius. I am getting married on June and me and my fiance are thinking of where we should go for our honeymoon....this seems very nice :)

Back along the northern coast of island nation Mauritius is Mont Choisy Beach. It’s located on the northwest tip, just north of Trou aux Biches and is the longest beach in Mauritius. The resort area here is also named Mont Choisy.
What makes this special is the gentle way the strand of white sand bends around the coast creating a bay of beautiful, turquoise water, lined with casuarina trees. These trees provide shade and a perfect backdrop for the ocean. A word about the casuarina tree: it’s nice and shady, but has a thorny pine-cone-like seed pod that can be found under the branches. They don’t feel good when you step on them.

the Dwarfs of Wrocław | Poland

 This postcard was sent to me by Olga from Poland via postcrossing [LT-104698]. As she writes me, in Wrocław there are 173 dwarfs located in very different places of the city, 122 bridges and 12 islands. After World War II 80% of the city was rebuilt.

Wrocław (German: Breslau, Czech: Vratislav) is the chief city in south-western Poland, situated on the River Oder (Polish: Odra). Over the centuries, the city has been either part of Poland, Bohemia, Austria, Prussia or Germany. According to official population figures for June 2009, its population is 632,240, making it the fourth largest city in Poland. The city's name was first recorded in the year 1000 by Thietmar's Latin chronicle called Thietmari Merseburgensis episcopi Chronicon as Wrotizlawa.The city is traditionally believed to be named after Wrocisław or Vratislav, often believed to be Duke Vratislaus I of Bohemia. It is also possible that the city was named after the tribal duke of the Silesians or after an early ruler of the city called Vratislav  [wikipedia]
The Dwarfs of Wroclaw appeared on the streets of  the city in August 2005.

Nesvizh Castle

This beautiful postcard was sent to me by Maria from Minsk in Belarus via postcrossing [BY-118414]. It shows Nesvizh Castle in Belarus.

Nesvizh Castle or Niasvizh Castle (Belarusian: Нясвіжскі замак, Niasvižski zamak) is a residential castle of the Radziwill family in Nesvizh in Belarus.
The estate was owned by the Radziwiłł Polish magnate family from 1533, when it was awarded to Mikołaj Radziwiłł and his brother Jan Radziwiłł after the extinction of the Kiszka family. Since the Radziwills were one of the most important and wealthy clans of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, it was there that the Lithuanian Archive was moved in 1551. In 1586 the estate was turned into an ordynacja.
In 1582 Mikołaj Krzysztof "Sierotka" Radziwiłł, the Marshal of Lithuania, voivode of Trakai and Vilnius and castellan of Šiauliai, started the construction of an imposing square three-storey chateau. Although the works were based on a pre-existing structure of a mediæval castle, the former fortifications were entirely turned into a renaissance-baroque house. Construction was completed by 1604, and they added several galleries half a century later. The château's corners were fortified with four octagonal towers.

Dec 13, 2010

Piazza S. Marco, Venezia

A few days ago, I was having lunch with my mother and she gave me this card. It is in bad condition, but it is of great value to me because it was sent on 17 April 1971 from my mother and her sister to their father [my grandfather]. During that time there was military junta in Greece, that lasted from 1967 to 1974. My aunt and my grandfather have passed away, so this card brings me a lot of memories..

The card shows Piazza di San Marco during high tide (Acqua Alta). St Mark's Basilica (Basilica di San Marco in Italian) is the most famous of the many churches of Venice and one of the best examples of Byzantine architecture in the world. Located just off the Grand Canal, the gleaming basilica dominates Piazza San Marco (St. Mark's Square) and adjoins the Doge's Palace. San Marco is a cathedral: it has been the seat of the Archbishop of Venice since 1807.

Dec 10, 2010

Aapravasi Ghat

Another card from Tasneem. He writes: "This postcard shows Aapravasi Ghat Unesco Site. This site is located in the harbour front of Port Louis, which is also our capital. This site is related with the arrival of Indian immigrants in Mauritius."

The Immigration Depot (Hindi: Aapravasi Ghat) is a building complex located in Port Louis, which was the first British colony to receive indentured, or contracted, labor workforce from India. From 1849 to 1923, half a million Indian indentured labourers passed through the Immigration Depot, to be eventually transported to plantations throughout the British Empire. The large-scale migration of the laborers left an indelible mark on the societies of many former British colonies, with Indians constituting a substantial proportion of their national populations. In Mauritius alone, 68 percent of the current total population has Indian forebearers. The Immigration Depot has thus become an important reference point in the history and cultural identity of Mauritius.

Le Morne Brabant

Maurice is a name used as a given name or surname. It is a French and has become an English name, derived from the Roman Mauritius. It is of Latin origin, meaning "dark-skinned, Moorish".

This is another private swap, this time with Tasheem from Mauritius.  He writes me: "this is "Le Morne", a Unesco World Heritage Site. It is a standing basaltic rock, located at the peninsula of Maurutius. The history of this site is related with the African slaves [19th century]." Makes me wanna search to find out more about the history of this rock...Lets see what I learned:

125 anniversary of Malayan Railway's been a while since I last wrote here..I was down with flu and today I'm getting ready for a roadtrip to Ioannina in Northern Greece! But, a have a little bit of time to upload ona or two postcards before I leave :)

This card was sent to me by Aamea from Malaysia as a private swap. This is a collectors item, as I would call it, since it was issued [both the card and the stamps] as an anniversary celebration of the 125 years of Malayan Railway.

Dec 4, 2010

Xiaoyaojin Park

This card was sent to me by Shijunjun from China as a private swap. It shows Xiaoyaojin Park, which is famous fro its beautiful sceneries.

Xiaoyaojin Park, known as Leisure Ford Park in English, is a famous battlefield. A long time ago, Zhang, taking almost all of his troops, initiated a night attack on the Sun barracks, which were unprepared, and this led to a long bloody battle. The outcome was the defeat of Sun's army. However, Sun escaped death by jumping over the neighboring canal. Today, the place is a park and is of much interest to those who love plants and animals. There is a botanical garden here, consisting of bonsai and rare Chinese plants, as well as a local zoo.[link]

Dec 2, 2010

Xidan crossroads | China

Another postcrossing card [CN-282175], this time from MaYan from China. On the card it sais: "The T-shaped juncture at the crossroads of Xidan. In the 1950's, the West Chang'an Avenue ended at Xidan. During the rebuilt, the old Judicial Department Street (on the right) and Baozi Street (on the left) were torn down and the place became today's crossrads."