One of the world's best photography spots, Deadvlei in Sossusvlei, Namibia, lives up to the hype. Where once a river ran, a drought and blowing sand from dunes covered this artery for life hundreds of years ago, and all that remain are these tree carcasses, begging to be preserved digitally in the photo albums of visiting tourists.
In China they have their way to practice the way of impermanence. Calligraph practice their art wiht water on the ground. The time it's done it already started to dry. bettre catch it up while it's done and by the bit because you hardly can get a whole view of it.
The counterpart of the tibetan sand mandala.
For a lovely view of the Chicago skyline, check out the shore of Lincoln Park. Just watch out for the fog---it can sneak up on you!
Get outside the usual neighborhoods in San Jose, and watch the city light up as the sun goes down! This photo was taken in a little suburban neighborhood near Fowler Creek Park.
Rendezvous - Michigan summers at South Haven beach. Picnic, Frisbee, friends, and lots of sunshine.
Ritual - once a year, take part in a "Day of Gracious Living" - pause from work/stress & enjoy a good afternoon with good people.
A very quaint, beautiful, TINY church, with no visible path, and certainly no gondola, to help you get there. I almost didn't notice it at first, from the top of the mountain.
If you made it to this Church on a day like this in Luzern, you would automatically get into the heaven (of your choice) for free, I think.
Assuming you don't die of frostbite on the way up.
A peculiar playground (perhaps?) that we floated over on our way up to the top of Mt Pilatus... Either a very rustic playground or a makeshift bootcamp obstacle course. Jury is still out on this one. Cute though!
If you're looking for an alternative to Hiking the Inca trail, consider renting motorcycles and finding your own way there. Armed with a couple of local maps two 400cc bikes, my travel buddies and I drove over 8,000 foot snowy mountain peaks and down into sweltering jungle paths. The way there isn't always a road, and some improvisation will be necessary, but it's not a difficult ride overall.
Motorcycles can be rented in town (we had a good experience with http://www.ericadventures.com) and come with jackets, helmets and gloves. Accommodation can be found in towns along the way, and some hiking will be necessary to get into the site.
There's a reason this is one of the wonders of the world. No, it cannot be seen from outer space, but it is truly magnificent. When visiting China, avoid the super touristy hotspots. We visited a spot that locals preferred called MuTianYu, about 40 minutes outside of Beijing and a short hike to the entrance. There are a few "forbidden trails" but carry on with caution. Bring water and a packed lunch to have a picnic on the Great Wall!
While in Cuba, I visited the nature reserve called Las Terrazas. There I found a coffee shop that served this capppuccino with a surprise cinnamon topping. With a specially designed stencil, the servers offer up a real Cuban coffee with an image of Che Guevara. It only seemed appropriate as Che Guevara is a beloved figure in Cuba. If you travel to Cuba, be sure to visit the town of Santa Clara. There you will find the Monumento Ernesto Che Guevara... a complex with a huge statue of the revolutionary hero, a museum detailing his life, and a mausoleum holding Guevara's remains.
Turning the corner onto Pasaje Zelaya in the Abasto area of Buenos Aires reveals a shocking array of colors in a celebration of all things Argentinian. The walls on the buildings here are covered in poetry, song lyrics, tango dancers, portraits of important figures and more. I walked down this street expecting to find a museum; it turned out to be closed but I ended up discovering a great deal about Argentinian culture anyway.
In the backstreets of the mile-high mining town of Bisbee, Arizona, some unlikely art: a stencil of Mona Lisa? blindfolded? framed by Buddhist philosophy? This is some of the street-art that inspires residents in this SE Arizona town to display bumper stickers with this request: "Keep Bisbee Bizarre."
To those who don’t understand, a cup of coffee is nothing more than a vile brown bean juice - halitosis in a cup, with cream or without. Regular partakers, like so many addicts, sport trophies of stained teeth and caffeine shakes and brown drips on white shirts. Without it, they simply cannot function.
To a true connoisseur, a perfectly brewed cup is on par with the finest decanted red wine -- first noticing notes of vanilla through the olfactory membranes of a finely-tuned nose, then tasting for sweetness and body, bitterness and finish, like each sip is an experience and not just a drink.
And to the rest of us?
Coffee is a ritual. A reminder that, no matter where in the world we last dropped our luggage, we can instantly transport ourselves to a place of comfort: an iron table on the streets of Malaga with a plate of churros and a cafe con leche; a shared Nicaraguan hostel kitchen...
For us, the vast dusty desert was a novelty act. We rode a camel. We dismounted and took a few photographs. We drank tea and pretended to be desert dwellers. But as we prepared to leave, I saw a sadness come over the local people's faces. It's when I realized this endless dry horizon was someone's home.
Next time you think your job is tough, imagine sitting on concrete in this position for over eight hours a day. Note how the sculptor is holding the carved head with his foot!
This is real life. This isn't about wondering which book you should read next, who's television has 3D or any number of miniscule problems. This photograph signifies to me that I honestly don't have it that bad and neither do you.
This is what you came for.
Sure it's the exotic smells, the snippet of a town almost buried between two rivers flanked by jungle carpeted hills...
...but it was somebody's promise that this part of SE Asia had actually held time at bay. And in a region where ancient treasures are frequently cheek-to-jowl with crass development, that is no small feat.
A walk through UNESCO designated Luang Prabang seems to constantly veer between its thousand-year roots and its 19th Century French-Colonialist rule:
But no further.
And when you do see an anachronistic tuk-tuk or (gasp) auto they tend to look almost intentionally antiqued.
Like the monk above that strolls non-chalantly by this classic Citroen from the 1950s, a visitor will be challenged to pick apart the constantly shifting provenances of the scenes they encounter, but one thing will be for sure:
It will never feel like the present.
Meg, Jo, Beth, Amy - a carer, a writer, a musician, an artist. Many girls grew up with these 'Little Women' in their minds. So did I. The creator of these literary characters rests in peace at the Sleepy Hollow in Concord. It was humbling to have found her.
I loved the silence, the peacefulness, of the Atacama Desert. I would ride my bike there regularly and go hiking, especially on the sand dunes. Sometimes, I'd bring some new friends. This is, as you may have guessed, a photo of us running, hopping, skipping, rolling, jumping, sauntering down the mighty sand dunes of Valle de la Muerte with the awesome desert sky overhead. I enjoyed the cinematic drama of the evening sky and the towering sand dunes, and tried to capture that here.