PANAMA MAP _ 0618

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Panama was inhabited by several indigenous tribes prior to settlement by the Spanish in the 16th century. It broke with Spain in 1821 and joined a union of Nueva Granada, Ecuador, and Venezuela named the Republic of Gran Colombia. When Gran Colombia dissolved in 1831, Panama and Nueva Granada remained joined, eventually becoming the Republic of Colombia. With the backing of the United States, Panama seceded from Colombia in 1903, allowing the Panama Canal to be built by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers between 1904 and 1914. In 1977, an agreement was signed for the total transfer of the Canal from the United States to Panama by the end of the 20th century, which culminated on 31 December 1999.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

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From Panama
Travel from Nov 13 to Dec 18
Thanks Balanca  !

THE PANAMA CANAL _ 0617

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France began work on the canal in 1881, but had to stop because of engineering problems and high mortality due to disease. The United States took over the project in 1904, and took a decade to complete the canal, which was officially opened on August 15, 1914. One of the largest and most difficult engineering projects ever undertaken, the Panama Canal shortcut greatly reduced the time for ships to travel between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, enabling them to avoid the lengthy, hazardous Cape Horn route around the southernmost tip of South America via the Drake Passage or Strait of Magellan. The shorter, faster, and safer route to the U.S. West Coast and to nations in and around the Pacific Ocean allowed those places to become more integrated with the world economy. It takes between 8 and 10 hours to go through the Panama Canal.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

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From Panama
Travel from Nov 13 to Dec 18
Thanks Balanca  !

SAARLAND _ 0616

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The Saarland. With its capital at Saarbrücken, it has an area of 2,570 km² and (as of 30 April 2012) 1,012,000 inhabitants. In terms of both area and population size – apart from the city-states of Berlin, Bremen and Hamburg – it is Germany’s smallest federal state. The wealth of its coal deposits and their large-scale industrial exploitation, coupled with its location on the border between France and Germany, have given the Saarland a unique history in modern times.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

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From Germany
Travel from Nov 19 to Nov 28
Thanks Christine  !

TAJ MAHAL _ 0615

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An immense mausoleum of white marble, built in Agra between 1631 and 1648 by order of the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his favourite wife, the Taj Mahal is the jewel of Muslim art in India and one of the universally admired masterpieces of the world’s heritage.

http://whc.unesco.org/

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From India
Travel from … to Dec 12
Thanks Harsha !

POLAR BEAR (ARCTIC NORWAY) _ 0614

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The polar bear (Ursus maritimus) is a carnivorous bear whose native range lies largely within the Arctic Circle, encompassing the Arctic Ocean, its surrounding seas and surrounding land masses. It is a large bear, approximately the same size as the omnivorous Kodiak bear (Ursus arctos middendorffi). A boar (adult male) weighs around 350–700 kg (770–1,540 lb), while a sow (adult female) is about half that size. Although it is the sister species of the brown bear, it has evolved to occupy a narrower ecological niche, with many body characteristics adapted for cold temperatures, for moving across snow, ice, and open water, and for hunting the seals which make up most of its diet. Although most polar bears are born on land, they spend most of their time at sea. Their scientific name means “maritime bear”, and derives from this fact. Polar bears hunt their preferred food of seals from the edge of sea ice, often living off fat reserves when no sea ice is present.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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From Norway
Travel from Nov 28 to Dec 12
Thanks Beatrice !

SIGHTSEEING WITH UNDERGROUND (BUDAPEST) _ 0613

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The metro system is easy to use and you can get to anywhere in the city fairly quickl,y providing there’s no maintenance or some emergency situation (small fires are quite frequent in recent years) due to which a line has to cease operation for a couple of hours.
The three main lines converge at Deák tér station in the city centre, where you can change for any of the two other lines or continue your travel by bus, tram or since it is downtown Budapest you can conveniently explore the area by walk.
http://www.budapestbylocals.com/

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From Hungary
Travel from Nov 27 to Dec 12
Thanks Csonka !

WRINKLED HORNBILL (SARAWAK) _ 0612

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The wrinkled hornbill or Sunda wrinkled hornbill (Aceros corrugatus) is a medium-large hornbill which is found in forest in the Thai-Malay Peninsula, Sumatra and Borneo. It has sometimes been placed in the genus Rhyticeros together with most other species generally placed in Aceros.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

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From Malaysia
Travel from Nov 24 to Dec 12
Thanks Vanessa Tan !