The Białowieża National Park

April 4th, 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Environment, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks, UNESCO World Heritage

Swamped forest © Lilly M/cc-by-sa-3.0

Swamped forest © Lilly M/cc-by-sa-3.0

Białowieża National Park is a National Park in Podlaskie Voivodeship, in Eastern Poland adjacent with the border with Belarus. The total area of the park is 152.2 square kilometres (58.8 sq mi). It is located 62 km (39 mi) southeast of Białystok (Poland). It is known for the protection of the best preserved part of the Białowieża Forest, Europe’s last temperate primaeval forest fragment that once stretched across the European Plain. It is home to the world’s largest population of European bison, the continent’s heaviest land animals. The border between the two countries runs through the forest, the Belovezhskaya Pushcha National Park is adjacent on the Belarus side of the border. There is a border crossing for hikers and cyclists within the forest. According to one study, the park brings in tourist revenues of about 72 million zlotys per year.   read more…

Theme Week Jordan – Wadi Mujib Biosphere Reserve

March 21st, 2017 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage, Union for the Mediterranean

Canyon of Wadi Mujib © YousefTOmar/cc-by-sa-3.0

Canyon of Wadi Mujib © YousefTOmar/cc-by-sa-3.0

Wadi Mujib, known as the biblical River Arnon, is a river in Jordan which enters the Dead Sea c 420 metres (1,380 ft) below sea level. During the last Ice Age the water level of the Dead Sea reached 180 metres (590 ft) below sea level, about 240 metres (790 ft) higher than it is today. It flooded the lower areas of the canyons along its banks, which became bays and begun to accumulate sediments. As the climatic conditions changed, about 20,000 years ago, the water level of the lake dropped, leaving the re-emergent canyons blocked with lake marl. Most canyons managed to cut through their plugged outlets and to resume their lower courses. However, Wadi Mujib, abandoned its former outlet by breaking through a cleft in the sandstone. This narrow cleft became the bottleneck of an enormous drainage basin with a huge discharge. During the years the cleft was scoured deeper and the gorge of Wadi Mujib was formed.   read more…

The Canary island of El Hierro

May 21st, 2015 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage

Valverde © Mataparda/cc-by-3.0

Valverde © Mataparda/cc-by-3.0

El Hierro, nicknamed Isla del Meridiano (the “Meridian Island”), is the smallest and farthest south and west of the Canary Islands (an Autonomous Community of Spain), in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Africa, with a population of 11,000.   read more…

The biosphere reserve Spreewald

February 23rd, 2015 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Environment, UNESCO World Heritage

Spreewaldgurke - Cucumber of the Spree Forest © spreewald-info.de

Spreewaldgurke – Cucumber of the Spree Forest © spreewald-info.de

The Spreewald (German for “Spree forest”) is situated 100 km south-east of Berlin and designated a biosphere reserve by UNESCO in 1991. It is known for its traditional irrigation system which consists of more than 200 small channels (called “Fließe”; total length : 1,300 km ) within the 484-square-kilometre (187 sq mi) area. The landscape was shaped during the ice-age. Alder forests on wetlands and pine forests on sandy dry areas are characteristic for the region, however, also grasslands and fields can be found.   read more…

The Masurian Lake District

February 6th, 2012 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks, UNESCO World Heritage

Orzysz Lake © JaGr

Orzysz Lake © JaGr

The Masurian Lake District or Masurian Lakeland (Polish: Pojezierze Mazurskie; German: Masurische Seenplatte) is a lake district in northeastern Poland within the geographical region of Masuria. It contains more than 2,000 lakes. The district had been elected as one of the 28 finalists of the New7Wonders of Nature. The Lakeland extends roughly 290 km (180 mi) eastwards from the lower Vistula River to the Poland-Lithuania border, and occupies an area of roughly 52,000 square kilometres (20,000 sq mi). Administratively, the Lake District lies within the Warmian-Masurian Voivodeship. Small parts of the district lie within the Masovian and Podlaskie Voivodeships. The lakes are well connected by rivers and canals, forming an extensive system of waterways. The 18th-century Masurian Canal links this system to the Baltic Sea. The whole area is a prime tourist destination, frequented by boating enthusiasts, canoeists, anglers, hikers, bikers and nature-lovers. It is one of the most famous lake districts in Central Europe and a popular vacation spot, with the highest number of visitors every year.   read more…

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