Eden Project, UK – The Eighth Wonder of the World

There are some things that humans have made in the name of science that are just amazing. One example is Biosphere 2 for climate change and space research in Arizona. Another is the Eden Project in Cornwall, England. The smaller, Mediterranean biome is to the right and the rainforest biome is in the mid-ground. History … Continue reading Eden Project, UK – The Eighth Wonder of the World

A Garden After Blooming – Wisteria Garden, Ohori Park, Fukuoka

We see the effects of flowering plants year-round: sniffling and sneezing because of pollen, bees and insects invading picnics, and a sweet smell in the air. What many of us fail to realise is how fast flowers come and go. Nowhere is this more evident than in a single-species garden - also called a monoculture … Continue reading A Garden After Blooming – Wisteria Garden, Ohori Park, Fukuoka

Fushimi Inari and Mt. Inari, Kyoto – The path of 1000 gates

A different view of the torii If you are travelling to Kyoto on a budget, you don't like spending money or you just like hiking, then Fushimi Inari is for you. Fushimi Inari Taisha (伏見稲荷大社) is a Shinto Shrine in Kyoto that is dedicated to Inari, the god of rice. It is free to visit … Continue reading Fushimi Inari and Mt. Inari, Kyoto – The path of 1000 gates

Biosphere 2, Arizona – Climate change and space research

North of Tucson, Arizona and the Santa Catalina mountains about an hour from Saguaro National Park sits an interesting looking complex. If you didn't know it was there, it is easy to overlook because it sits far back into the foothills. It looks like a giant greenhouse and moon base. But what is it? That … Continue reading Biosphere 2, Arizona – Climate change and space research

Sonora Desert Museum, Arizona – Natural history and botanical garden

Central and southwestern Arizona is covered by the Sonoran Desert, part of which also lies in California and the Mexican states of Sonora, Baja California and Baja California Sur. West of Tucson, just south of Saguaro National Park, lies the Sonora Desert Museum - a botanical garden, natural history museum, zoo, aquarium and art gallery. … Continue reading Sonora Desert Museum, Arizona – Natural history and botanical garden

Texas Canyon, Arizona – Smooth Round Boulders

A rocky outcropping of granite spheroid boulders in Texas Canyon, Arizona. This view is south of the canyon. Halfway between Tucson, Arizona, and the border with New Mexican lies Texas Canyon. Interstate 10 (I-10), which crosses the southern US states from California to Florida, runs right through the canyon. There is also a convenient rest … Continue reading Texas Canyon, Arizona – Smooth Round Boulders

Agua Caliente, Tucson, Arizona – An Oasis in the Desert

Tucson sits in a desert and has the climate to match. Everywhere you look, there is sand, dust, Saguaro cacti (cactuses) and other spikey plants. You can see a perfect example of the typical, unspoilt landscape at Saguaro National Park, Arizona. However there is also some water here as well - Agua Caliente. Agua Caliente … Continue reading Agua Caliente, Tucson, Arizona – An Oasis in the Desert

Saguaro National Park, Arizona – Home of giant Saguaros

Just outside Tucson on both sides, Saguaro National Park is the home of the giant Saguaro cacti. These majestic giants, able to stand tall up to 12 metres (40 feet) tall, dominate the landscape of central and south Arizona as well as Sonora state in Mexico. Two Saguaros flanking and flanked by other desert plants, … Continue reading Saguaro National Park, Arizona – Home of giant Saguaros

Van Gogh Exhibit – an explosion of colour and sound

An art gallery - or is it? As someone who is not usually a big lover of art exhibits, I was a bit sceptical when I was asked to go to one. Standing around looking at paintings, especially abstract ones, isn't my thing. I don't usually feel a connection and while I can admire them … Continue reading Van Gogh Exhibit – an explosion of colour and sound

Arduaine Garden, Scotland – A slice of the world

Just south of Oban lies the Sound of Jura. Overlooking the Sound is Arduaine Garden, which contains plants from around the world. Established in 1898, it was a time when people were becoming very interested in plants from other parts of the world. Here native plants mix with those from the tropics and Asia. A … Continue reading Arduaine Garden, Scotland – A slice of the world

Tintinhull Gardens, England – Weekend Paradise

Set amongst the rolling farmland of Somerset, TIntinhull is a house/gardens combination; it sits in the tiny village of the same name. To visit the house you have to rent it from the National Trust and stay there for at least 3 days. As a result it is not open to the general public. The … Continue reading Tintinhull Gardens, England – Weekend Paradise

Caumasee, Switzerland – Ice blue water in winter

Like the Rheinschlucht nearby, the Caumasee is a lake formed due to the largest known pre-historic landslide in the Alps. The lake itself (which is how See translates from German in this case) sits upon the debris deposited by the landslide. The lake is located near the ski resort town of Flims in the Swiss … Continue reading Caumasee, Switzerland – Ice blue water in winter

Rheinschlucht, Switzerland – The Grand Canyon of Switzerland

The Ruinaulta or Rheinschlucht is a large canyon in the Canton of Grisons in Switzerland. It was formed approximately 10,000 years ago. when a landslide brought millions of tonnes of debris into the valley, creating this canyon area. The term Ruinaulta refers to this high heap of rubble (the literal meaning), while the name Rheinschlucht … Continue reading Rheinschlucht, Switzerland – The Grand Canyon of Switzerland

Stralsund, Germany – The gateway to Scandinavia

Stralsund is a town with a population of just over 60,000 on the coast of northern Germany. It is the fourth largest city in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. Stralsund is a Hanseatic city: it was part of the Hanseatic League. It certainly reflects that and the wealth that it in brought from the city's historical buildings. One of … Continue reading Stralsund, Germany – The gateway to Scandinavia

Eltz Castle, Germany – A Living Castle

Eltz Castle is a majestic little castle. It sits on a rock in a small wooded valley in Rhineland-Palatinate (Rheinland-Pfalz) in Germany. Although definitely among the lesser-known castles (unlike Hohenzollern or Neuschwanstein), it is extremely appropriate for its location and has a few unique features, both physically and as well as features of its history. … Continue reading Eltz Castle, Germany – A Living Castle