Melbourne Australia's second largest city

on Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Melbourne - the capital of Victoria and Australia's second largest city - is a modern, cosmopolitan city with a host of entertainment, sports, and culinary, cultural and shopping options to be enjoyed. The streets, parks, distinctive cultural precincts and waterfront area of Melbourne make it a magnificent city to explore at leisure.
The city has an amazing range of attractions and activities to keep you entertained all year round.
Enjoy a cruise along the Yarra River, re-live some great sporting memories on a tour of the MCG (Melbourne Cricket Ground) or see some spectacular 360-degree views from the Melbourne Observation Deck.
Explore the animal kingdom at the Melbourne Zoo or dive with the sharks at the Melbourne Aquarium. Join in some interactive footy action at the AFL ( Australian Football League) Hall of Fame & Sensation or enjoy the international art on offer at NGV International and Australian art at The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia.
To find out how Melbourne became the city it is today, spend a day or two at one of the many local museums. The Melbourne Museum houses the state collection in an imposing modern building. The Immigration Museum and Maritime Museum- home of the Polly Woodside, highlight key events in the growth of Melbourne, while the Gold Treasury Museum shows how Melbourne became a city built on gold.
Other histories include the stomach-turning tales of the Old Melbourne Gaol, Ned Kelly's armour at the State Library of Victoria and Cooks' Cottage the parental home of Captain James Cook. Kids will love the hands on workshops and new playground at ArtPlay, and the Champions Australian Racing Museum & Hall of Fame at Federation Square.
Melbourne attractions include:

Federation Square - Fast becoming the cultural icon of Melbourne with its 'Fractal Façade' system on each building in the square. The façade is made up of triangles made of sandstone, zinc and glass pieced together at different orientations and surface angles. See it from the inside at The Atrium and the BMW Edge Theatre indoor amphitheatre. The Square is home to restaurants, cafes, bars and retail outlets as well as venues including the Melbourne Visitor Centre, the Australian Centre for the Moving Image, the Australian Racing Museum and the Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia - dedicated exclusively to Australian art.
Queen Victoria Market - a Melbourne institution since the late 1860s, you can shop for gourmet food, clothing, toys, souvenirs and more. Closed Monday and Wednesday.
Melbourne Cricket Ground - Melbourne's home of cricket and Australian Rules football, and the heart of the 1956 Olympic Games and the 2006 Commonwealth Games. There are tours and the ground houses the Australian Gallery of Sport, Olympic Museum and the Cricket Hall of Fame.
Southbank - a bustling entertainment complex situated on the south side of the Yarra River, housing Crown Casino, restaurants, bars, nightclubs, cinemas, sculpture, artworks and more. There is an open air Arts & Crafts market on Sundays.
Melbourne Aquarium - a state-of-the-art aquarium located by the Yarra River, featuring sharks, stingrays and coral.
St Patrick's Cathedral - with soaring interiors and stained glass windows.
Melbourne Tram Car Dinner - A unique way to see the city of Melbourne whilst enjoying the fine Australian Cuisine.
Old Melbourne Gaol and Penal Museum - amongst the museum's chilling exhibits are the gallows from which Ned Kelly was hung. If you're brave, take a night-time tour of the jail.
Docklands - New Quay - a short walk or tram ride from the CBD, you'll find restaurants, cafes, bars and riverside walkways decorated with public artworks.
The Shrine of Remembrance - in the parklands of Kings Domain, off St Kilda Road, a fine European-style boulevard.
St Kilda - beachside suburb with restaurants, cafes, bars and famous Luna Park.
Scienceworks - a hands-on, innovative science museum in Spotswood also includes Melbourne Planetarium. Exhibits include Australia's first plane and car.
Melbourne Museum - innovative collection housed in a stunning modernist building.
Lygon Street, Carlton - known as "Little Italy", a popular restaurant, cafe and bar strip.
Brunswick Street, Fitzroy - a street with a bohemian heart, with cafes, restaurants, clubs and fashion shopping.
 Melbourne Australia 2nd Largest City
 Melbourne City Image
 Melbourne Amazing Night Snap
 Melbourne City Picture
 Melbourne Sky View
 Melbourne at Night
 You can't help but fall in love with this southern city that boasts a vibrant cultural scene, a sports crazy population, and culinary indulgences aplenty. While not getting as much international tourism or media attention as its northern neighbor Sydney, Melbourne's sublime appeal lies in its laid-back attitude, its distinctive cosmopolitan flavor, and a rich calendar of events from Formula 1 to comedy festivals. The center of the city is a great starting point with Victorian architectural gems; myriad hidden lane ways; and hole-in-the-wall shops, bars and restaurants. Venture bayside to St. Kilda for a roller-blade along the beach, a slice of cake on Acland Street, and some serious people-watching, or head to funky Fitzroy for more fine food, art galleries, and nightlife. Make sure to drag yourself away from the city itself and explore the coastline along the rugged Great Ocean Road, one of the world's best road trips.

Isles of Scilly Inrich With Natural Beauty, England

on Thursday, May 13, 2010

Call them the Isles of Scilly, or just Scilly, England's smallest official "Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty" lies sprinkled in the Atlantic 28 miles southwest of Land's End. Scilly is an administrative part of Cornwall (owned, in fact, by the Duchy of Cornwall) easily accessible by boat, helicopter, or plane from the mainland. The islands are a collection of secluded sandy beaches, Bronze Age burial chambers, and rocky promontories, and a smattering of beautifully located cafés ensure plenty of diversions -- such as kayaking, sailing, and windsurfing -- en route. There are five inhabited islands: St. Mary's, Tresco, St. Martin's, St. Agnes, and Bryher, along with more than 150 uninhabited ones that lay scattered across the shallow turquoise seas. Fringed with beaches of soft, pale sand, the archipelago has the exotic appeal of some faraway holiday paradise, an impression enhanced by the balmy, frost-free climate and colorful subtropical plants. While the sometimes harsh winters scare people off, summers do anything but: You're advised to book well ahead as Scilly's limited accommodations are reserved solid for much of the year. May sees the islands largest gathering of temporary visitors, as the annual gig-racing champions bring spectators intrigued by the 19th century vessels used by the competing teams.
Isles of Scilly
Isles of Scilly Snap
Isles of Scilly
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Isles of Scilly Wallpaper
Isles of Scilly Image

Salta Province in Argentina

on Monday, May 10, 2010

While many a traveler's Argentine gaze rarely moves off Buenos Aires's bountiful charms, visitors seeking a genuine gaucho experience in one of the country's most visually stunning regions have been schlepping the nearly 1,000 miles from the capital to Salta. A forward-thinking government has spent the last decade focused on connecting the region's colonial-era towns, encouraging agricultural modernization (like the young but robust wine industry), and making it easier for tourists to get an eyeful of scenery that rivals the American Southwest in natural beauty -- especially along the road from Salta to Cafayate, which is dotted by red rocks and cliffs and some two dozen wineries. The Tren a las Nubes ("train to the clouds") reopened in 2008 and now ferries passengers 13,842 feet above ground, over 269 miles on the day-long journey through mountains and desert, colonial towns and adobe villages, crossing the paths of gauchos, Indians, and European winemakers along the way. For an urban experience, Salta City's restaurants serve local cuisine that's inspired rather than parochial, and folk taverns fill with dancers and musicians playing along to the region's Salteña soundtrack.






Abu Dhabi The Capital of United Arab Emirates

on Thursday, May 6, 2010

While all the focus has been on its neighbor Dubai, Abu Dhabi, the capital of the seven city-states that make up the United Arab Emirates, has pursued similar global playground goals, but with more restraint and focus. Which is why when Dubai cried "uncle" to its creditors in late November, everyone looked to Abu Dhabi to help set it straight. This fiscal crisis will give the world the opportunity to see how a gulf state that didn't spend all its money on indoor ski resorts and a palm tree-shaped island can weather a crisis. For travelers -- especially business ones -- it will be the year that defines whether Abu Dhabi will be a flash in the pan or the next serious entrant on the global stage. In our guidebook to the region we said, "Abu Dhabi can seem a little slow and perhaps even a bit boring. But its beaches are just as beautiful, there's less traffic and more greenery, and the character is distinctly Emirati, preserving much of the conservative heritage that its northeastern neighbor has begun to toss off."
Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi

Travel To Abu Dhabi UAE

on

The city of Abu Dhabi is the federal capital of the United Arab Emirates (U.A.E.), a constitutional federation of seven emirates established in 1971. The city dates back to 1769 when it was founded as a commercial port. Its strategic location allows it to be a major trade center for the Middle East region. Houston and Abu Dhabi have a strong commercial relationship.

A major energy city, Abu Dhabi ranks third in the world for oil reserves. There are 34 Houston companies with subsidiaries in U.A.E. and one U.A.E.-owned company in Houston. In addition, Texas Children’s Hospital has an ongoing physicians program with the Ministry of Health of the U.A.E. In 2006, Houston’s seaborne trade with the U.A.E. was valued at more than $759 million, and air cargo trade was valued at more than $289 million.
abu dhabi city

abu dhabi city

abu dhabi city

abu dhabi city

abu dhabi city

abu dhabi city

Fast Facts:
Population: (urban municipality) 683,531
Country: United Arab Emirates
Continent: Asia
Latitude & Longitude: 24.4667ºN, 54.3667ºE
GMT Time Difference: +4 hours
Time Difference from Houston: +10 hours
Distance from Houston: 8190 miles/13180 km
Climate: Sunny/blue skies can be expected through-out the year. The months June through September are generally hot and humid with temperatures averaging above 40ºC (110ºF). The weather is usually pleasant from October to May. January to February is cooler and may require the use of a light jacket.
Language: Arabic
Governmental Structure: N/A
Current Mayor: The Honorable Khalfan Ghaith Al Mohairbi, Chairman of Abu Dhabi Municipality, Agriculture and Town Planning
Other Sister Cities: N/A