Sep 13

RHODES – SOME SAY IT’S THE BEST OF GREECE (ΡΌΔΟΣ)

Nicknamed the “Island of the Sun”, Rhodes is one of the most popular holiday destinations in Greece and the most popular of the islands that make up the Dodecaneselor archipelago. Experience the natural beauty of the island, exploring its ancient history, enjoy the nightlife or simply enjoy the famous Greek food and wine. Rhodes offers you everything that your can wish for.

Situated at a distance of 18 kilometers west of Turkey, right between Greece and Cyprus, Rhodes is the largest island in the Dodecanese group.

How to get to Rhodes

You can get there by air from Athens and arrive on the local airport in 45 minutes. Other domestic flights link Rhodes to Crete, Mykonos, Karpathos, Santorini, Kastellorizo and Thessaloniki. Another alternative is to reach it through the water, using the ferry that connects the most important Greek ports to Rhodes – Piraeus, Crete and other islands in the Aegean – and the ports in Turkey and Israel.

Weather

Probably the most beautiful island in Greece (but then again, who can properly decide?!) and the perfect choice for honeymoon, Rhodes has a mild Mediterranean climate. Summers are hot and sunny, and winters are mild and wet. During July and August, the wind turns Rhodes into the perfect place to practice windsurfing. The average temperature reaches 29º Celsius in the summer months, so it is not unbearably hot, regardless of the island’s position, down south in the Mediterranean Sea.

Colossus of Rhodes

Colossus of Rhodes is one of the 7 wonders of the world. It is a giant statue of the god Helios, situated at the entrance to the Port of Rhodes. The statue was built by Chares of Lindos between year 292 and 280 B.C. Ancient texts describe that structure was built around several stone towers, placed on a pedestal of marble near the entrance of Mandraki port, then beams of iron were placed on towers of stone and tiles of bronze attached girders to give shape of the human body. Colossus of Rhodes lasted only 56 years, but discutions regarding its reconstruction continue until today.

The Beautiful Beaches of Rhodes

Since the island has a very long coastline, there are many places where you can swim and sunbathe. Faliraki is the most famous beach, located only 14 kilometers from the capital city of Rhodes. Kalithea is also a beach that is well-known mainly for its medicinal hot water springs. Other beaches worth visiting are: Prassonissi, Traganou, Kalathos, Tsabika, Saint Paul and Afandou.

What can you do in Rhodes

“Old Town” or Medieval City is one of the most beautiful symbols of the island and has been included in UNESCO World Heritage. Here, visitors can admire Pili Elefterias, Byzantine Museum, Panagia tou Kastrou, the Mosque of Suleiman, Simis Square, Ippokratous Square, Grand Masters Palace, the Minaret in the old city and the Great Hamam, Archeological Museum, the Clock Tower and the famous Street of the Kings – Ippoton.

If you like nature and want to admire some superb specimens of butterflies, then spend a day in the woods and do not miss the Butterfly Valley. But for that you have to visit Rhodes between late May and September, so that you can really enjoy this unique place.

If you’re tired of sightseeing and sunbathing, you can practice water sports, play tennis, golf, or go horse riding. For those passionate about gambling in a casino there is such a place in Afandou.

Traditional Greek villages are truly picturesque. When visiting Rhodes, do not miss Filermios, Kritinia and Lindos, three of the most beautiful traditional villages of the island. White houses, narrow stones and ancient history creates an faqscinating and romantic atmosphere, just perfect for a holiday in two.

Photo source:

Picture 1: glasgowairport.com; Picture 2: wikimapia.org; Picture 3: tripadvisor.com; Picture 4: travelpassionate.com; Picture 5: commons.wikimedia.org; Picture 6: portesmagazine.com; Picture 7: survivingeurope.com; Picture 8: blog.forum-nexus.com; Picture 9: click.ro; Picture 10: tedytravel.com; Pucture 11: blog.greece-rentacar.com; Picture 12: ilgiramondo.net; Picture 13: holidaywarehouse.co.uk
Sep 12

TOP THREE OF THE MOST POPULAR TOURIST ATRACTIONS IN MARAMURES (MARAMUREŞ)

A holiday in Maramures is not what you would expect, simply because this place is so unique that it will always reveal the unexpected – in the best way possible, of course! The lure of a land of which you have heard only good things will make you travel the world just to find a region of dream that is a must-see tourist attraction at least once in your life. We have made a top three list of the best things to do in this amazing region, but there are many more, we assure you. But for now, just to open your apetite, let’s see

Venture towards Horse Falls

In order to get to Horse Falls, you have to get at Borsa tourist resort first; this place is located in the eastern county of Maramures, near Rodna Mountains National Park. Borsa’s village is particularly appreciated by fans of winter sports; nearby, there are several quality slopes – the most important is Runc-Stiol, which has a length of 2 km – and a natural trampoline with a length of 90 meters, for those who dare to “fly” with skis. Otherwise, there are plenty of hostels, hotels to enjoy the quiet summers in a picturesque scenery.

You have two options to get to the Horse Falls from Borsa, namely the Resort located at an altitude of 1300 meters. If your your allow you, just follow the route marked with a red triangle; it will take you about two hours by foot, or climb the mountain on a chairlift, which operates in both summer and winter (their program begins at 9.00 and the last race is at 17.00). If you choose this option, you can go through the woods a bit more, about 20 minutes, to reach the waterfall. This is the highest waterfall in Romania: has a heights of 90 meters, and is divided into several stages.

Horse Falls is not necessarily impressive by the volume of water that it delivers (of course, it depends on the season you visit it), but by its natural location. Just like any place that respects itself, this waterfall also bears an old legend (although some say the story was real), revealing that the name of the place comes from the fact that long ago, several horses belonging to the local inhabitants were cornered by a bear during a storm, just on the edge of the plateau where the waterfall is formed today. Frightened and helpless, the horses were left with no option than to throw themselves into the void of the precipice and perished from the sight of the bear ravenous. Following this tragedy, people have named several places in the area in memory of their horses Horses’ Bridge, Horses’ Waterfall, Horse’s Spring, Horses’ Mountain.

Visit Sighet

On the way to the Merry Cemetery in Sapanta you pass through Sighetul Marmatiei, a town of 40,000 inhabitants placed at the Ukrainian border. Sighet was documented for the first time in 1326 (the town was known only by the name of Sighet until 1964) and had a turbulent history marked by several events. One of the darkest hours in the history of the place was in 1950, when in the town’s prison were brpught a lot of representatives of Romania’s elite, opponents of the new communist regime: ministers, heads of government, leaders of democratic parties, generals, academics , men of letters, bishops of the Greek-Catholic church etc.

As a result, today, one of the main attractions of the area is the Memorial to the Victims of Communism and of the Resistance, which is in close proximity to the City Hall. The former prison has been converted into a museum, a memorial of pain that reconstructs and analyzes the painful past of those dark years of Romania. The Memorial has been founded by poet Ana Blandiana and writer Romulus Rusan, and the Sighet Museum has been developed with the support of the Center of Studies, which has its headquarters in Bucharest. It opens at 9.30 and the visitation fee is 6 lei.

Sighet is an interesting and quite animated town, offering visitors many other tourist attractions, that are much happier. Among them, Maramures Village Museum, an outdoor museum that houses a reserve of traditional architecture and monuments in the entire area of Maramures. You can also visit the Ethnographic Museum, with exhibits where you can see traditional objects, icons painted on glass and wood, pieces of folk etc.

Take a ride on Mocăniţa

Mocăniţa is a top attraction in Maramures. Since 2000, this tiny, old and slow steam train has been reintroduced into the circuit, and now it passes through the Vaser Valley, which displays itself in front of your eyes in all its beauty.  You can go on this trip of 21.6 km, through the midst of a beautiful landscape that lasts over two hours, from spring to autumn.

The train leaves from Viseul de Sus and if you want to get tickets, you’ll find that are actually five trains with different departure programs; the first one leaving at 9 a.m., and the last departing at 11 a.m. and back to 17.00.

Beyond that, if you come with your children, they will will be delighted by this trip on the Mocăniţa. Try to pick a warm day (better give up if it rains!), take the seats and enjoy the scenery. The train has three stops, the end of the road is Paltin, which you will reach in about one and a half hours. There’s nothing else to do than to eat steaks and sausages, take pictures with the little locomotives and don’t miss the visit to the Railway Museum. Vaser Valley is beautiful and wild, the silence is broken only by the hiss of the iron “horse” and certainly the photos you’ll make will turn into memories.

Photo source:

Picture 1: traveleurope.ro; Picture 2: parohiaceacu.wordpress.com; Picture 3: traveleuropa.ro; Picture 4: cultural.bzi.ro; Picture 5: sighet.ro; Picture 6: ; Picture 7: tripadvisor.co.uk
Sep 09

THE ROSE VALLEY IN BULGARIA – THE KINGDOM OF ROSES

May and June are great for city breaks and road-trips throughout the fascinating rural areas of Europe: the weather is just perfect, everything is green, the fields are full of flowers fruits and ripe in a dazzling abundance: cherries, peaches, apricots and all the blessings of nature. Bulgaria has more than that, for years, it is a world leader in the production of essential oil of rose and recently it has surpassed France at the production of lavender oil. So you do not need to fly halfway across Europe to see fields of purple lavender, where you do that in Bulgaria, especially that it is not yet a mass touristic area, therefore all the beautiful places are not annoyingly crowded and very importantly, the prices are lower when it comes to accommodation and food.

But before lavender blossoms, it is time for the roses to bloom; this particular type of roses are used for marmalade and fragrance of essential oil with a strong smell.

Geographically speaking, the Rose Valley is stretching from Klisura Kazanlak, between the rivers Stryama (in the west) and Tundzha (towards the east), at an altitude of 700 meters.

From mid-May to early June, the Rose Valley is adorned in clebebrations robes and receives tourists from all over the world to see the miracle. The fields are in bloom and delightful scents flood the surroundings; the show that it provided by the billions of roses in bloom is unique and charming.

At the festival you will enjoy traditional and modern singing, dancing, street parades, and a popularity / beauty contest, where the Rose Queen is chosen among the most beautiful girls; however, beyond all these festivities, the main attraction is very ritual of picking the roses. Rosa Damascena – Damask rose in free translation – it’s the variety that is grown here at the foot of the Balkans and is considered, rightly, the greatest treasure of the region. Aligned rows of roses unfold in front of your eyes just like the beautiful vineyards in Tuscany.

Each piece of this blessed land is cultivated with pink roses and when it is time for harvest, hundreds of day laborers are brought from all over the country to fill hundreds of bags with delicate petals every day.

Obligatory stop: the Damascena Private Distillery in Skobelevo

Damascena is an ethnographic complex, which includes the distillery where you can see how they make the essential oil during the rose harvest season, a rosarium with hundreds of varieties of roses – which come in all shades of pink and all intensities of fragrance, a park, an ethnographic museum, a gift shop (with cosmetics based on rose and lavender) and a restaurant with a lovely garden where the tables are placed under a canopy of climbing roses.

This beautiful place seems to be taken out of the pages of ancient fairy tales, or that you have reached a parallel dymension that resembles Heaven. You will certainly love this place and will definitely want to return.

Photo source:

Picture 1: bulgaria-guide.com; Picture 2: putivochka.com.ua; Picture 3: reddit.com; Picture 4: balkanitas.jp; Picture 5: pinterest.com; Picture 6: evgenidinev.photoshelter.com; Picture 7: citysightseeing.bg
Sep 08

FIVE OF THE MOST INTERESTING TOURIST ATTRACTIONS IN POLAND

Poland is a beautiful country and everybody who came across it can’t argue. But, besides the best-known sights in Warsaw and Krakow, Poland has a lot or other enchanting things to offer to its visitors. For instance, did you know that Poland still has one of the oldest forests in Europe, which is dating from immemorial times? We have here a list of the five most interesting places that are probably less known to the general public.

Wielinczka Salt Mine  

Located in the outskirts of Krakow, Wielinczka Salt Mine is considered one of the oldest companies in the world. In this place, salt is extracted continuously since the 13th century underground mine includes a small town where everything is carved in salt, including a small chapel which is said to have the best acoustics of all European construction. Dozens of ancient sculptures made of salt are combined with works by contemporary artists.

Bialowieza Forest

Bialowieza Forest is a remnant of the vast forest that covered Europe since the ancient times. Guarding the borders between Poland and Belarus, the forest is a tourist attraction for thousands of fans of bike rides or tracking. Also, Bialowieza is home to 800 species of protected wisent bison that are kept in a reservation.

Gdansk Old Town

Located on the coast of the Baltic Sea, Gdansk has a loaded history; the city was occupied in the 14th century by the Teutonic Knights, whose fortress displayed a striking contrast on the city that was then known as the Altstadt (or “Old Town”). In the 15th century, Casimir IV of Poland allowed the structures erected by the knights to be demolished. Currently, the historic Gdansk includes many constructions built during the 17th century, including mills, churches and granary.

Warsaw Old Market

Founded in the late 13th century, Warsaw, and its central market, represented the heart of Polish culture for five centuries. The original market was destroyed during the Second World War but was carefully reconstructed immediately after the cessation of the conflict. The market is a sculpture representing a mermaid, the symbol of the Polish capital.

Central Market in Krakow

Built in 13th century, the Central Market in the old part of Krakow, is the largest the medieval market in Europe and one of the main attractions of Poland. The square is surrounded by historical buildings, palaces and churches. The Center Market is dominated by The Cleric Principality, which was rebuilt in 1555 in Renaissance style.

Photo source:

Picture 1: en.wikipedia.org; Picture 2: mountaingorillaboy.wordpress.com; Picture 3: thegallivantpost.com; Picture 4: wildpoland.com; Picture 5: fodors.com; Picture 6: stedentripper.com; Picture 7: nightlife-cityguide.com

Sep 07

MEDICAL TOURISM ON MARGARET ISLAND, BUDAPEST (MARGIT-SZIGET)

Ever since the thermal waters have been brought to the surface in 1886 on Margaret Island, the place turned into an important therapeutic spa with natural curative waters with a pleasant climate and a magnificent location in the middle of the Danube and the city Budapest; to all these natural wonders the most modern medical equipment has been added. The medicinal waters of the local hot spring are used by the hotel’s hydrotherapeutic equipment at a temperature of 70 ° C and are cooled to 34, 36 and 40 ° C, maintaining all its curative active ingredients.

The essential element of this water is sulfur, which decomposes slowly and only partially. The solution that is obtained through natural processes is basically an undiluted concentrate that fortunately does not have the typical unbearable smell of sulfur. The remaining minerals and gaseous elements are effective both in hydrotherapy and treatments that involve the consumption of mineral water.

Thermal therapy is helpful for muscles, joints and degenerative nerve diseases; therapies recovery after fractures; bone deformities and disorders of the peripheral circulation. For rheumatic problems, thermal waters are effective on the one hand by the use of therapeutic equipment and on the other by separating curative mineral substances containing key components. Through continuous and regular treatments, good results can be obtained in the case of post-inflammatory degenerative diseases of the muscles, joints and intestines. Rheumatic diseases can be treated with combined therapy programs which include baths, massages, mud treatments, electrotherapy and kinetic therapy.

Good results can be obtained in the treatment of chronic inflamed areas. The gas content of water is significant. After analysis it was shown that the content of water gas bubbles produce a film on the body. The gas emission is not so intense in order to to produce “soda water” in the true meaning of the word, but those who come to bathe on Margaret Island feel that water is not a common one. The effect is comparable to that of a gas carbon baths. It is well known that moderate temperature thermal waters on Margaret Island is good for those who have hypertension due to atherosclerosis and those suffering from diseases of the heart muscle or coronary artery.

As practiced regularly thermal baths have a calming effect, they are useful for therapy of functional neuroses. With modern equipment available to Margaret Island, thermal waters here can be used in all sorts of combinations, such as baths, massages, hot showers, carbon or mud baths, baths with essences of pine nuts and baths with weights – a 100% Hungarian invention. Mud used for mud is brought from Heviz thermal lake, near Lake Balaton. In addition to the treatments mentioned on Margaret Island the spa offers other therapeutic methods such as iontophoresis, galvanic current or waves. To improve the therapeutic effect of the thermal waters massages in gymnastics programs are often prescribed.

Radiography unit is worth mentioning for modern equipment available and allows the most complex exams. Clinical laboratory also owns the latest technology. The pharmacy is stocked with medicines from reputable companies in Eastern Europe and the West. The spa is in close contact with the National Institute of Rheumatology and Physiotherapy, and when needed, renowned specialists are consulted in complex cases. Highly qualified staff collaborates with medical experiments to help patients healing spa.

Thermal water therapy is beneficial in the following conditions:

– Rheumatic locomotor organs (except acute inflammation)

– Arthritis – polyarthritis – chronic arthritis

– Spondylosis (stiffness vertebrae)

– Ankylosing spondylitis

– Disorders of the spine

– Muscle and peritendinous disease

– Post-traumatic treatments

Photo source:

Picture 1: myportfolio.ucl.ac.uk; Picture 2: danubiushotels.com; Picture 3: thecrazytourist.com; Picture 4: gotohungary.com; Picture 5: sracd.hu; Picture 6: best-treatment.com
Sep 06

THE FORTIFIED CHURCH IN BIERTAN, THE PLACE OF REFUGE OF THE PRINCE OF WALES (BIERTAN)

Those who visit Transylvania, and especially the fortified churches in the middle of the country will not bypass a village that has become famous in recent years, mainly due to Prince Charles, who visited her in thick lines and has promoted it as: Biertan – a place so beautiful that feels like a visual storytelling that inspires anyone to pack one’s bag and follow the road towards the legendary fortified church.

Located in the northern county of Sibiu, between Medias and Sighisoara, Biertan was first mentioned for the first time in the documents beginning with 1283, as a Saxon settlement. Traditionally, as the years pass, the city has developed an administrative organization that places the church in the center of the rows of houses, which seem like a fortification belt around it. Built in the late Gothic style, on a hill, between 1490 and 1520, the church is preserved almost perfectly, being one of the best preserved of the fortified churches in Transylvania among the circa 300 in number, that have been built during the 15th and 16th centuries.

The main part of the medieval complex is the church itself, one large, comprising three halls equal height edifice that is very impressive and harmoniously built. The altar was made by master architects from Nuremberg and Vienna, being the largest in Transylvania, with its 28 painted panels. The pulpit is carved in stone and one of the most interesting elements of the building is the door of the sacristy, built in 1515, which features a unique closing (it has no less than 19 locks!), and is the winner of the World Exhibition in Paris in 1900. The organ dates from 1869 and is the work of renowned Carl Hesse of Vienna. Inside, there can also be admired the valuable pews painted in the studio master Johannes Reichmuth from Sighisoara in the early 16th century, together with the oriental rugs or flags that belonged to the guild of Biertan.

The complex near the church embodies a clock tower, the Catholic Tower (symbol of religious tolerance), the Mausoleum Tower (where the graves of the prelates are located), the Bastion Tower Prison (or room reconciliation, where they those who wanted to divorce were imprisoned in order to make a truce), the Tower Hall, and bastion.

The patriarchal atmosphere of Biertan bears the memory of the 1,600 Germans who lived here in the 70’s. Biertan is no longer being considered today a Saxon village but, ironically, here takes place the meeting of the Transylvanian Saxons almost every year. If you want to find accommodation in Biertan, the most likely solution at hand is the Unglerus Pension / Medieval resort), located at the foot of the hill on which the church stands, and that includes a restaurant and a wine cellar.

Photo source:

Picture 1: viatransylvania.com; Picture 2: fetede10.ro; Picture 3: watcher.ro; Picture 4: discovertarnavamare.org; Picture 5: eurotv.md; Picture 6: travelchannel.com; Picture 7: romaniatravel.com
Sep 05

BUCOVINA VILLAGE MUSEUM, A TIME CAPSULE OF THE ANCIENT LOCAL TRADITIONS (MUZEUL SATULUI BUCOVINEAN)

Located right next to the fortress of Suceava, this outdoor museum is a true delight of the spirit, where you will find popular architectural landmarks specific to the area of northern Moldova. Basically, you will discover a village of Bukovina, which you can admire, both from the outside and in the inside; there are different types of houses and farms in the area, with annexes, and the center of the village with a church and bell tower. There are also a pub, popular technical installations with specific workshops for pottery, blacksmithing, weaving etc.

The excellent settling of the interior of the houses will show you what the way of life is like in this area, and how each element has a clear purpose: from furniture to stoves, from textiles to interior parts of costumes.

Bucovina Village Museum is the highlight of the architectural heritage of folk in the “Upper Realm”. The newest of all open-air museums in Romania, it was open in the 1980s, when the Bukovina village disposed of countless monuments of folk architecture, and it took shape after 1990, when new homesteads and popular settlements have been transferred, reconstructed and open to visitors.

The overview of the museum reflects the complex organization and activity of a village, envisioned as a synthetic model of the Bucovina village. Along with households formed by the house and its annexes, located along the streets, from the center of the village – the polarizing center of community life -, the church and belfry, dating from 1783 are present. Besides all these elements, you Cn also see the local pub from the village of Saru Dornei and technical installations: water mill, mill of peasant coats, carding comb, oil mills.

Trades and crafts are represented in specific workshops such as pottery, spoons etc., and also workshops for weaving, painted eggs , furrier and so on.

The interior settlement is a unique ethnographic exhibition which has complied with the objectives of the regional peculiarities of folk architecture. Ovens, stoves are found in the museum in a wide variety of types; traditional furniture, interior textiles, pieces of folk traditional civilization completes the picture of Bucovina. The peculiarity of Bucovina Village Museum is the representation of the spiritual life of the peasant by marking the rites of passage. In the Straja House, there are exposed props for the ritual of baptism, and the Cacica House the funeral ceremony is marked – the two major thresholds of life.

Beyond the essential function of conservation, restoration and recovery of cultural heritage, Ethnographic Museum Bucovina Village has imposed itself on the national cultural landscape by organizing folk performances and festivals (held on the open air stage), craftsmen fairs to promote traditions and authentic creations, art camps for students, the museum becoming a polarizing center for the cultural life of Suceava.

There are many of them and each deserves a special description, but we will only mention a few, just to get you an idea; among the monuments of folk architecture there are Vama Church and Belfry, Household Bilca, Household Campulung, Household Humor Monastery, Household Moldoviţa, Household Rădăşeni, Household Straja, House Breaza, House Cacica, House Campulung, House Dorna Candreni, House Holohoşca, House Humoreni, House Iacobeni, Sadova Fountain, the Marginea Potter Studio, the Forge, Humor Monastery Mill and many others.

Facilities. It is good to notice that there are free services for people with physical disabilities, children in orphanages, war veterans and current workers and former museum employers. There is a 50 percent discount for pensioners.

Photo source:

Picture 1: trecator.ro; Picture 2: centrulculturalbucovina.ro; Picture 3: svnews.ro; picture 4: turismbucovina.ro; Picture 5: muzeeinaerliber.ro; Picture 6: muzeeinaerliber.ro; Picture 7: turistderomania.ro
Sep 02

TWO LEGENDARY LAKES IN THE MIDST OF THE ROMANIAN CARPATHIANS

You cannot talk about places to visit in the Romanian Western Carpathians without mentioning the natural beauty that unfolds in front of your eyes with every step that you take, while visiting Nera Gorge. Mountain lovers will start on the red line trail, 9-10 hours along the Nera River to admire the wild beauty of the area. Starting point: Sopotu Nou. Arrival point: Sasca Montana, or vice versa. You move on to Devil’s Lake, pass through Ogasul Porcului and La Carlige, where you have to cross the Nera River, then reach  Dubova Cave; then you get to the Tower of Beg and Damian’s Canton, then Caraula Hill and the Bridge of the Bei, then pass through tunnels dug into rock. During spring and early summer you can go rafting on the Nera River. It is more difficult, almost impossible to perform this kind of fun during the dry months when water falls below acceptable in some places.

In the Nera – Beusnita Natural Park, you’ll leave the car (in case you get up there by personal car) to the Trout Pools and you shall start walking towards the Eye of the Lake of the Bei, which is the first priority of the route (the second will be Beusnita Waterfall). After about an hour of walking on a reasonable route, you will reach to a lake with turquoise water, transfixed in the heart of the woods, surrounded by shady trees. The karst lake is fed by a spring (and this is the reason why it never freezes during winter time), it has a depth of about 3.5 meters and an area of 284 square meters. The fascinating color is due to carbon dioxide and limestone on the bottom of the lake, which is so clear that can catch a glimpse of the playful fish.

There are a lot of legends and superstitions related to this particular lake. One of them says that once a Turkish odious who possessed this land had a son with blue eyes, who was madly in love with a local woman, whom he noticed in the Flower Glade. Their love story soon reached to the ears of the Turk, who was terribly upset that his son was in love with a Wallachian. So he sent his soldiers to kill his own son. Hearing about his father’s decision, the lover got so upset that he started to cry continuously, and then he decided to end his life. It is said that the lake was formed from the tears of the young Turkish prince gliding from his blue eyes.

Initially an underground lake, emerging from the cave of the same name, the Devil’s Lake reached the current form by the collapse of the ceiling of the cave. In order to be able to see it, you have to leave from Sasca Romana towards Damian’s Canton, then Vogiun’s Glade and then a descent to the lake adjoining the Nera river bank. Another option is from Sasca to Carbunari and Sopotul Nou, and then on a forest road and continue downhill from its half.

The name of this blue-green pool also comes from another rather peculiar legend (there are several legends and the place is full of such fascinating folklore tales, but this seems to be the most popular): they say that it was an old pastor who lead his goats around this lake . At one point a little man appeared on his path, who asked him to fry a fish without bending its shape because of the fire.

The old men agreed, but he also asked the little fellow to fry for him a goat’s head without it showing its teeth. The old pastor fried the fish and the fish kept its shape, but obviously the teeth of the goat surfaced after placing it on the fire and it was completely burned. The little man got angry and felt as if he got beguiled, the little man jumped in the lake while the old man said to himself that he had just met the Devil – which is why the name of the pool remained the Devil’s Lake.

Photo source:

Picture 1: legendelebanatului.blogspot.ro; Picture 2: opiniatimisoarei.ro; Picture 3: calatorim.ro; Picture 4: darkclauds.com; Picture 5: hotweek.ro; Picture 6: profesordanisirbu.wordpress.com; Picture 7: efoartebine.ro
Sep 01

SAINT BASIL CATHEDRAL IN MOSCOW – AN EVERLASTING ARCHITECTONIC MASTERPIECE (СОБОР ВАСИЛИЯ БЛАЖЕННОГО, МОСКВÁ)

Although this famous cathedral is known worldwide as “Saint Basil’, its official name is “Cathedral of the Intercession of the Mother of God”. The alternative name linked to Saint Basil refers to the fact that the holy relics of Blessed Basil, who is highly revered in Russia, are buried inside the church. Saint Basil “the Fool” lived between 1468 and 1552 and had been buried in Holy Trinity Cathedral, which at that time was located on the current site of the famous edifice, a few years before the current cathedral was going to be built.

The raising of St. Basil Cathedral was commissioned by Ivan the Terrible in 1552 to mark and celebrate the capture of Kazan from the hands of the Mongols. It was completed in 1560 and although there isn’t any evidence known about its construction, the place is “haunted” by a lot of legends. For example, we do not know anything about the actual builders of the cathedral besides their names – Barma and Postnik Yakovlev – and the legend that after the construction was finished, Ivan blinded them so that they can no longer see anything and never make any comparisons. Historians have established, however, that this is nothing but folklore. Another legend has it that Napoleon love this cathedral so much that he wanted to bring it to Paris. Since this could not be done in that time, he was angry and ordered to be set on fire. A rain saved it in the last minute.

 

The architects of today cannot agree with the idea that has governed the plan behind the building. There is the hypothesis that the builders wanted to dedicate a tribute to the churches in Jerusalem, building eight churches around the ninth, representing the medieval symbol of the star with eight corners (reminiscent of the Lord’s resurrection day). On the other hand, the eight domes symbolize the eight attacks triggered by tsar against the Tatars of Kazan. The original concept of the Cathedral St. Basil remained hidden under layers of additional styles that have been added to the main building. Originally, the cathedral was completely white to match the white walls of the Kremlin. Regarding the towers, they were golden and not as colored as they are today.

In the 17th century a bell tower was added and the domes were replaced and decorated. In 1860, the cathedral was rebuilt, gaining a new paint and a new integrated and complex design, which has been kept until now. During the time of the Soviet Union was called into question the demolition of the church because it stood in the way of Stalin’s plans of organizing parades on the Red Square. The cathedral was saved only because of the courage of the architect Piotr Baralovski who refused orders to begin preparing demolition, sending the Kremlin a telegram of refusal, saying he will cut his throat in front of the cathedral if it will be destroyed; the telegram was going to cost him five years in prison.

Today, St. Basil Cathedral is a museum. During the restoration works of the 70s, in one of the walls was discovered a wooden spiral staircase. Visitors use this scale to enter the main church, which is an architectural masterpiece. Once a year, in October in the cathedral the priests hold the service for the Intercession Day.

Saint Basil Cathedral is open every day of the week, except Tuesday, between 11 to 17o’clock.

It is probably the best known symbol of Moscow and it represents the peak of human creativity and mastery.

Photo source:

Picture 1: famouswonders.com; Picture 2: en.spbrossitour.com; Picture 3: thetimes.co.uk; Picture 4: holeinthedonut.com; Picture 5: trekearth.com; Picture 6: reddit.com; Picture 7: worldsecretlocations.com
Aug 31

OLUDENIZ – THE PEARL OF TURKISH RESORTS (ÖLÜDENIZ)

Oludeniz is situated in south eastern Turkey, about 240 km from Antalya and 315 km from another famous resort, Bodrum.

It is bordered by the Mediterranean Sea and is at a stone’s throw from Greece (as the matter of fact, not long ago, it was Greek territory). Since we’ve mentioned it, you can go on a day trip to the Greek island of Rhodes.

In Oludeniz you soak up the sun on one of the most photographed beaches in the world.

Oludeniz resort is slightly expensive and is visited by English tourists in about 95 percent, so almost everything in the resort seems to be adjusted to the UK way of life.

At the hotels the products, such as water, ice-cream or even the menus, are slightly expensive, but things are different if you chose a bungalow – which seems to be more and more popular among tourists, as the wild scenery of the Mediterranean is stealing people’s hears.

Oludeniz has two beaches, Belcekiz and Laguna Beach, one most beautiful in the world! Beaches are located in a bay surrounded by mountains that seem to rise directly from the sea, and the water is blue, clear, warm and friendly.

If you want to change the atmosphere, you can take a Dolmus (minibus routs between resorts) and take a trip to Fethiye or Ovacik Hisaronu for shopping in bazaars or luxury shops (don’t miss Tuesday, as there takes place the big bazaar in Fethiye). Also, in Oludeniz, there is a main street filled with restaurants, bars and shops where you can buy anything (clothing, water, souvenirs etc.).

There are three beaches: Marina Beach, opposite to the hotel, Champagne Beach, in the center and Dolphin Beach, which has three slides ending directly into the sea. On beaches and on the bottom of the sea there is soft sand, but around the slides, you should expect small round gravel, so maybe you want to purchase a pair of special aquashoes. Each beach has its own bar, sun loungers and umbrellas in sufficient numbers so you do not have a problem finding a place at any time. There are also swings and hammocks strategically positioned in shaded areas, so everything is just perfect.

Every hotel has special entertainment and animation programs and in the morning there are various swimming pool competitions for children as well as older ones; in the afternoon you might enjoy a session of afternoon polo or soccer for adults and evening entertainment at the amphitheater. In the Agora, there is soft music playing during the day and during the night there is a band playing live music for the guests to be entertained.

There are a lot of free stuff that you can enjoy: Turkish bath, sauna, steam bath, whirlpool, fitness, aerobics, aqua aerobics, volleyball, basketball, mini-football, 6 tennis courts, table tennis, darts, billiards, archery, mini-golf, water sports, windsurfing, internet cafe, internet wifi in all the rooms, beaches and the Agora.

It’s plenty to talk about, but overall, to put it in a few words, you have beach party, music, animation, dancing, fireworks and the most stunning sights and blue waters, just the recipe for a perfect vacation. Hotels offer free shipping on their beaches, you only pay the access to the public beach.

In conclusion, for those who want relaxation in an oasis of greenery, silence and overall happiness, this place deserves its name as one of the best resorts in Turkey.

The area is a dream land, the sea is warm, the weather is sunny with 30 degrees every day, so we cannot but recommend Oludeniz.

Photo source:

Picture 1: clickundflieg.com; Picture 2: kardeslerboats.com; Picture 3: mirror.co.uk; Picture 4: comparetravelmarket.co.uk; Picture 5: heelstohikingboots.com; Picture 6: otelcenneti.com; Picture 7: huffingtonpost.com