The Table Mountain

I didn’t know what to expect weeks before my trip to Cape Town in South Africa.  I had mixed emotions and like what I normally do before traveling, I lower my expectations.

I did my research about South Africa. I looked at pictures, read its history and browsed some personal experiences of people who have been there in the internet.   With only a week to go around Cape Town, I did my usual top 10 list of  where to go, what to do and which ones must see.  Table Mountain ranked number 1 on my itinerary which I based on the many personal accounts of people from travel sites and blogs.  What I read excite me.  The Table Mountain grew on me as the day drew nearer to my trip to Cape Town.

The Table Mountain is one of the New Seven Wonders of the World, I have been to the 2 others on the list (Underground River in Puerto Princessa in my country the Philippines and Halong Bay in Vietnam).  The Table Mountain definitely deserved its spot in this prestigious list though (I believe) there are just so many that should have been included or the list does not just consist of 7 (make it 12 or something!).

This captivating mountain which I found absolutely remarkable and nothing like I’ve seen before became the backdrop of my stay in Cape Town.

The Table Mountain as seen from my hotel room made my every morning in Cape Town truly awesome.
Table Mountain as seen from the Waterfront
The V&A Waterfront is a prime tourist area in Cape Town. The Table Mountain makes the waterfront even more picturesque.
Table Mountain
One blogger wrote, “it is a mortal sin to miss the Table Mountain”.. I didn’t want to commit such sin, so off to the top I go.
On top of Table Mountain
On top of the world, I mean the Table Mountain overlooking the stunning Cape Town and the Atlantic Ocean.
On top of the Table Mountain
On top of the Table Mountain overlooking the Atlantic Ocean and the Indian Ocean.
The Table Mountain
The Table Mountain as seen from my seat on board the Emirates Airlines. I surely left my heart in Cape Town.

Cape Town is probably one of the most beautiful cities in the world and South Africa is on my top 7 list of the world’s most picturesque countries.

Travel Theme: Bridges

What better way to get back to blogging after two months of hiatus than to showcase the bridges that I’ve seen and crossed.  Thanks to one of my favorite blog sites, Ailsa’s Where’s my backpack? for a wonderful theme that enticed me to go back to my usual blogging self.

I have always been fascinated with bridges.  I remember back as a kid, I made bridges out of my father’s cassette tapes and let my toy cars pass thru them. He would get mad at me when he hears I drop or crash any of those precious tapes.  Oh, what great memories!

Now, I pass through bridges regardless whether they are narrow or wide, long or short, old or new.  But just like when I was a kid, I am still fascinated.

I have a dozen photos of various bridges but these were the only ones I get to upload.  My humble sharing in this week’s travel theme.

Sydney Australia's Darling Harbor
Sydney Australia’s Darling Harbor
At the canals of Amsterdam
At the canals of Amsterdam
Mandaue City Cebu in the Philippines
Mandaue City Cebu in the Philippines
Harbor Bridge Australia
Harbor Bridge Australia
Alexander Bridge in Paris
Alexander Bridge in Paris

Oh what a great feeling to be able to blog again ! Until next time.


The Life-Giving Greens

This week’s photo challenge made me appreciate life more through the color green.  As I scramble my album and took some photos over the weekend to capture the greens around me, I saw and realized more.

Nature shows the most extravagant spectrum of the color green. It’s outstanding hues is relaxing and its shades refreshing.  It is so vivid that it invoked my soul to thanksgiving for it is the color of life that sustains me, my family and the country.   The Philippines with its 7,107 islands is an archipelago of greens with ample sunlight throughout the year and just enough rain to sustain its fields, the country is blessed with all the life-sustaining greens.

The green rice fields signify that soon our staple food will be ready for harvest.  The rice fields abound from the lowlands to the mountain ranges.  It is the food that sustain millions of Filipinos from generations to generations, from one island to the other.

Rice grains taken from the country’s rice granary, the Province of Nueva Ecija
This rice field carved from a mountain slope in Sagada. The entire province sits atop the Philippines’ most mountainous, the Mountain Province.
The lack of plain flat fields in the Cordillera mountain region of the country was not a hindrance for the indigenous people to grow their rice. They carved these terraces for rice planting. These terraces are known are more than 2,000 years old.

The volcanic soil of the Philippines gives the people bountiful harvest of fruits and vegetables.  The nourishment keeps the people of the islands happy, exuberant and thankful for nature has bestowed upon it the greens of life.

Mango fruit from the country is one of the sweetest in the world. Though out of season, this mango tree shows promising mango fruits in the next few weeks.
These jack fruits of yellow-green color from the province of Davao in the island of Mindanao are almost ripe for the picking.
Green eggplants from a friend’s farm in La Union province.  Eggplant is an ingredient of one of the country’s all-time favorite vegetable medley, the “Pinakbet”.
This farm on top of Mount Cabuyao grows broccoli, lettuce and cabbage among others is one of the major sources of fresh vegetable in the country. The farm’s altitude of more than 7,000 feet above sea-level provides an excellent condition for these greens to grow.

The color green also makes for a great scenery in the country’s favorite top tourist destinations.  The color represents cleanliness, freshness and vigor which is exactly what people need in search for a refreshing place to sooth the aches caused by the stresses of the city life. In return, a great source of income for the local community.

The hedge rows in Batanes made the already spectacular scenery of the island more stunning. The farmers use hedge rows as dividers for their farms.
The Chocolate Hills in the island of Bohol turn green during the rainy seasons and brown (chocolate) every summer. The stunning views of the hills scattered as far as the eye can see invites tourists from all over the world, an income generating source for the people.
The Summer Capital of the Philippines, Baguio, my home is a mountain resort town situated 5,000 feet above sea-level is green all throughout.

The color green is important, it is the color of life.  The main source of oxygen, the air that we breathe are from the greens that surround us.  Though they are natural and does not need human intervention for them to grow.  Our responsibility is to make sure that these greens stay for us to live another day with beautiful grins on our faces.

My house with red roof amidst all the greens.  A splash of other colors is not that bad after all.

Romanticizing the Stones

The Bayon temple is a magnificent stone structure.  It is at the center of the ancient city of Angkor Thom.   The entire Angkor Wat complex is splendid but the Bayon temple standout peculiar.  Although relatively the newest of all the temples in Angkor, this 12th to early 13th century temple depicts a bravura of authentic architecture.

This temple’s most captivating feature is the gathering of massive yet tranquil stone faces on the towers which protrude out all over. The temple also has an impressive set of bas-reliefs from the medieval age.

The Bayon temple in ruin is part of a rich culture, religion and history of Cambodia.  It has obviously suffered the battery and test of time.  Though the walls, floors and ceilings have dilapidated, its  deterioration manifests strength.

I am lucky enough to see the Bayon temple for the second time.  A treasure trove for all people to see.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Geometry (3)

Aerial Geometry

My persistence to seat by the window and stay awake during flights paid off.  I took these photos just for souvenir and not in my wildest ‘blogging’ dream to include it here until this week’s photo challenge about Geometry.

I still remember how the flight attendant would tell me to shut the window because it was too bright outside  but I just couldn’t let go of the stunning aerial view from Virginia to San Francisco. I don’t get to see this everyday. This was around 30,000 feet somewhere above between Nevada and California.  I thought that I had to maximize my first ever two-week American dream tour after getting denied a tourist visa last year and finally able to get one after a nerve-wracking interview with an officer at the Embassy.  I’ll do anything to take a snap shot of almost everything in America.

These shapes took my breath away; primarily because I thought I have seen these on TV or one of those Science fiction movies and they are just marvelous, perfect for souvenir shots.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Geometry (1)

The Sydney Opera House is a Geometrical Masterpiece, I believe.  The peculiar way of putting together tiles and come up with something like this is a great work of art.  No doubt the Opera House is one of the world’s most famous landmarks.

Travel Theme: Bright

Inspired by Travel Theme: Bright

It’s bright in the island of Cebu
The Sky is bright blue in the mountains of Baguio
The water is bright in the shore of Bohol
Bright Orange Centerpiece in my house
Bright Red Rose in Sagada Province
Bright Fruits in the Island of Balicasag
What bright eyes you have Tarsier
Bright Light, anyone?
What a Bright Idea ! A Cocktail bar in Pattaya

You know what else is bright? Check these out:

Travel theme: Bright