Japanese Garden of Monaco
Have you ever seen an authentic Japanese garden? Well, I had the chance of seeing the one in Monaco and was really impressed too. Wanna taste a little Japanese culture? Stepping on this ground is escaping from the real world into a fantasy land. You suddenly find yourself in a typical Japanese natural setting like the ones you see in marvelous paintings. The only thing that's missing is the fog. Instead, the Mediterranean sun reveals all minute details in a warm light.
With Japanese gardens, what you see is not all; the surface of things is the mere reflection of the psyche of an ancient culture. One really needs to be literally "cultured" in this direction to best appreciate the value of this art. (which I myself was not at the time of my visit! And it was a pity as I did not know what to look for and what to analyze better!) One can speak of a philosophy of gardening coming from the ancient Japan. Japanese gardening is an art fetched beyond the arrangements of vegetation, water and stone but is full of symbols:
* Koko - the veneration of timeless age;
* Shizen - the avoidance of the artificial;
* Yugen, or darkness - imply the mysterious or subtle;
* Miegakure - the avoidance of full expression
The perception of nature is different in the Japanese culture from that of the European one. Instead of viewing nature only as something to be subjugated and transformed according to man-made ideal of beauty, Japanese developed a close connection to nature, considering it sacred, an ally in putting food on the table and an ideal of beauty in itself. That is why the Japanese gardens are the synthesis of nature in miniature instead of correction of nature as with European gardens.
Actually, the design of Japanese gardens come from the Chinese model. The history goes back in time, around year 100BC when the emperor of China, Wu Di of the Han Dynasty established a garden that contained three small islands, mimicking the Isles of the Immortals, who were the main Taoist deities. An envoy of Japan saw it and took the idea to Japan, improving the existing Japanese practices.
The Japanese Garden of Monaco was designed at the request of Prince Rainier who thus fulfilled a desire Princess Grace had expressed during her life-time. The garden was designed by the landscape-architect Yasuo Beppu, has 7,000 square meters, its construction took 3 years and it was inaugurated in 1994.
* The wall (Heï) with an intermediary bamboo fencing (Takégaki) that stands for fragility and simplicity.
* The main gate (Shô-mon)
* The stone lanterns (Tôrô) - each having special different characteristics;
* The lake (Iké) with large swishing gold fish.
* The stone fountain (Fusen-Ishi)
* The covered terrace (Kyukeïjo)
* The islands (Shima) - represent two long-living animals - the tortoise and the crane, symbols of complementarity expressed
* The Tea house (Chatshitsu)- named the Garden of Grace (Ga-én)
* The dry landscape (Karésansui) - quintessence of Cosmos
* The Belvedere (Azumaya) - a house on a hill allowing view in all four corners
* The waterfall (Taki) - symbolizes the strength of Man and Nature, contrasting to the horizontality of the lake.
* The arched red bridge (Taïkobashi) - is red, the color of happiness and is narrow so as to make access to the divine island more difficult.
There are olive trees, cherry trees, conifers, azaleas, rhododendrons and camellias, a varied, rich vegetation of Mediterranean, South American, Australia, African and Asian origin, pruned according to the Japanese tradition.
Walking in the crowded Monaco, with all its stone, steel and glass, you can find in the Japanese Garden a peaceful, green oasis where even the great number of tourists pass unnoticed, wandering on the winding paths, through the thicket of the garden.
Laura Ciocan writes for http://www.ilovemontecarlo.com/ where you can find all you want to know about living in Monaco Please feel free to use this article in your Newsletter or on your website. If you use this article, please include the resource box and send a brief message to let me know where it appeared: mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
Trekking in Jordan
1st day : Airport / Amman, O/NOur representative will meet clients at the Airport, arrange their Visa and transfer them to Amman, check in at one of Amman's Hotels, dinner and overnight. ( L, D)
Is The Workamper Lifestyle For You?
If you've been dreaming of traveling the highways in your RV, but see the adventure as something far in the future when you retire, then you may want to seriously consider giving the Workamper lifestyle a try. You can live your dream now; it just takes a little preparation and commitment.
All the Way to Timbuctu
Yes, it's real. There is a place called Timbuktu and it is not just an imaginary figment at the end of an exclamatory statement. What child has not muttered at some time that he, or she, was "going all the way to Timbuktu!" What adult has not dismissed it as "some far away place," not knowing quite sure where it actually was, if it did exist at all.
Pigeon Forge Campgrounds
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Three Places to Interact with Dolphins in Hawaii
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Costa Rica: Land of Natural Wonders
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Alaska - Brief Travel Guide
WHAT TO SEE, TO DO AND WHERE: Mount McKinley is the highest mountain in North America (6,194 m or 20,306 feet), 150 miles from Fairbanks. Mountain climbing season is very short because of cold weather, strong winds and avalanche hazards. Nearly 1,000 people each season attempt the mountain, the best climbing conditions are in June.The peak is located in Denali National Park that offers superb mountain scenery and incomparable wildlife viewing, from 400-kg (900 lbs) grizzlies to Alaska state birds, willow ptarmigans, from Dall sheep to porcupines.
Bird Watching Mecca ? 338 Species At Acadia National Park
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The Wandle Trail - Map and Illustrated Guide
The Wandle offered wonderful trout fishing up to the latter part of the last century. The Wandle Trail was established by the Wandle Group in association with the Wandle Industrial Museum in September 1988, launched with a walk with over 200 participants, led by Colin Saunders. 'The Wandle Trail Map and Guide' was put together in 1996 by the Wandle Industrial Museum with the support and help of London Borough of Merton, and sponsorship from Brown and Root.
The Benefits of Inflatable Fishing Boats
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Rigid Inflatable Boats
A rigid inflatable boat is defined as a hard-hulled boat with air inflatable collars. RIB hulls are made of fiberglass, aluminum or composite materials. The soft bumpers or fenders, called ""sponsons,"" can be air tubes, or all foam systems. These boats are powered by a variety of motors and usually come from the manufacturer as a package ? boat with tube, motor and trailer.
Inflatable Boats: An Overview
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Should You Buy a Used Inflatable Boat?
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Gambling Isnt the Only Thing to do in Las Vegas
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Yellowstone Camping In The Fall
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Unforgettable White Mountains Vacations ? The Most Scenic 100 Miles in New England
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Too much to do in London!
No one can truly say they know London well. To know London completely is impossible. London changes faster than pigeons descending into the fountains of Trafalgar Square. Home to inhabitants for over 2,000 years now London has grown from the protective circle of the Tower to a sprawling metropolis, the ideal platform for constant illustrious activity. Always where there is history there are tales to tell. Tourists are naturally drawn to the regular tourist attractions, yet it is the true travellers that seek deeper to find the gems of a 2,000 year-old town. It only takes a very small amount of investigating to find something more rewarding, more interesting, more inspiring in London, than the London Dungeons (although it must be said ? is a damn good laugh if you can bear the hour long queues!). For instance, not even a minute's walk from the London Dungeons is the Hay's Galleria. 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Continue strolling directly into the I-Witness open-air gallery, before maybe snacking on a hot-dog in the mini-fairground. Walk past the green that previously hosted many Hollywood film premieres in giant marquees, the David Blaine in-a-box episode, plus many other varied events, and you are literally underneath Tower Bridge, keep walking and you are now in Shad Thames, a true delight of traffic-free, cobbled streets full of people, giving you a precise feeling of how the London streets felt hundreds of years ago. It is as if these streets have been restored from long ago, thus delivering to the traveller a wonderfully rich blend of old and new in the same vicinity. Circle around Shad Thames, past the ever-changing Design-Museum, and find yourself in Butlers Wharf, a charming quay-side collection of bars & restaurants all overlooking the Thames opposite the equally picturesque St Katherine's Dock. Trust me when I tell you that Butlers Wharf is the ultimate in romantic settings. Hays Galleria to Butlers Wharf is one walk of quite possibly hundreds to choose from, in fact ? that's a whole day right there! There are equal delights even if you turned left out of Hay's Galleria instead, especially the Clink Street Prison Museum, Vinopolis (Wine Museum), Borough Market, Southwark Cathedral, I could go on?. Great streets, great walks, great museums (forget the big-ones ? go to the Children's museum in Bethnal Green for a real treat). It is frustrating to think that the bulk of visitors to London wind up staying in some of the least interesting areas. Paddington & Bayswater are both great areas, being so close to Hyde Park & Kensington Gardens (now home to the finally-completed Princess Diana shrine). Kensington & Earls Court have their highlights too, but there is more to London than the tried and tested tourist routes. I recently stayed in a five star hotel in the middle of the city on the weekend for less than one hundred pounds a night, and was amazed at exactly how completely empty the city of London was. I was in heaven! There I was in the middle of one of the oldest cities around, and I had it all to myself! City hotels are notorious for being completely empty on weekends, hence the great rates. I am sure tourists pay over the hundred pounds per night threshold to stay in 'trendy' Kensington etal, when they could easily stay next to Tower Bridge, St Paul's, Millennium Bridge etc, for much less. Needless to say that the City of London (the financial centre) is absolutely coloured with history, everywhere you go there are buildings proclaiming their 16th century origins, and they are in abundance. I was recently taken to what is supposedly one of the oldest London pubs in existence. Again, this pub is not only hidden from the guidebooks and the common information sources, it is also hidden from the public! I had to be taken there, as I would never have been able to find it unless accompanied. This pub is hidden from the world. It is sandwiched between two narrow streets and therefore completely obscured from any main thoroughfare. It has its own courtyard and as you stand supping a pint outside, it is as if you are in Victorian London. Look down the misty streets and it is easy to conjure up an old bobby on the beat blowing his whistle, or Jack the Ripper lurking in the shadows. Oh - and there's a 150 year old tree growing through the building, to add to the oddity of the pub. Hampstead is another great area waiting to be discovered. Covered in green spaces, Hampstead (North London) is perfect for the idyllic setting combined with the close proximity to the big-smoke. Steeped in its own folklore, Hampstead was home to Dick Turpin (apparently he was born at the Spaniard's Inn ? hugely popular and famous pub on the Heath) of which his ghost still roams Kenwood house, and the surrounding woodlands. The high streets of Hampstead, Belsize Park, and the immaculately kept Primrose Hill are possibly the last untouched-by-commercialism streets in London (no Starbucks here!). If you want breath-taking views of the city, historical sites detailing the 'first entry point into London', combined with al-fresco dining, and an altogether more relaxed atmosphere, Hampstead is the place, and less than 15 minutes on the tube to the city centre! Now do you see why it seems frustrating that tourists stay in less desirable areas when they could stay in an altogether more inspiring location, just as close to all the major attractions? Of course, Hampstead is one of London's many beauty spots, yet the city is not all about beauty. As with any home to approximately 10 million people, varied activity is rife. London events cannot help but affect all, every Londoner has an opinion on the congestion zone, on the ill-fated Millennium Dome, on Tony Blair, in fact on any topic you care to mention. Start a conversation with any London black-cab driver ? typically famous for their outspoken views, and you will find yourself immediately thrown into the debate of the day. So, when visiting London do not even attempt to see it all ? you cannot. In a city where already this year a Roman road has been uncovered a mile below ground level dating back to 1 AD, and where Paddington workers uncovered Brunel's first iron-bridge ? one they didn't know existed - London is forever creating wonders on a regular basis. enq@VisitHotels.comwww.VisitHotels.com
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