Tuesday, June 15, 2010

UP, UP AND AWAY: THE 20 BEST VIEWS IN THE WORLD

Although best views may rapture our senses at different time and space, there are those few that really stand out at the mantle of the earth. So comely that sometimes you need not say a word – because you can't after all. Best views are not just twenty, thirty or forty, it’s multifarious. It could be just your backyard, the monotony of the setting sun, the gentle hush of the sea against the shore, a lonely fig tree above a hill and whatever it is that meets your eyes and reminds you of time and space without boundary in your soul's horizon and the only one that we've got – Mother Earth.

Best views and panorama will again differ from person to person, individuals to individuals. As to it's beauty, each and every one of us is the measure of all these, and one man did some. Before we set foot for a handfuls of them, I just wanna give due credit to Andrew Harper of yahoo.com for flying ahead of us and bee-hopped to these Twenty Best Views In The World. I just happened to agree with him and take a stance to revisit those places; and so we are up up and away...


1. The Grand Canyon from the South Rim
Gathers souls all over the globe because of it scenic beauty. So impressionistic especially at sunset's peak. A great vantage point from the Hopi Point, on the West Rim Drive. Theorized to have been carved thousands of years ago by flooding and causing to create channels upon channels, you'll see it's majesty laid snootily upon the earth mantle. Try hopping in during at the finest season of May and April, September and October. Here, the the weather is calmer and the park are less crowded, hence the more likely you'll enjoy.



2. Hong Kong Island from Kowloon
More likely a “Las Vegas” in a valley. This eye-teasing neon-lit skyscrapers is a darling of some science-fiction film responsible for it's condensed lighting futuristic-like ambiance. You'd catch 'em in it's golden hour at eight in the evening when everything bright and gay.




3. Phang Nga Bay, Thailand

Also known as the “James Bond Island” because of it's starred moments at James Bond's “The Man With The Golden Gun.” The island's seemingly unusual rock formations (limestone), which are really big big rocks, make it a hard won natural brainchild all over the world – only in Phuket, I guess. It is said that thousand of years ago, you can still set your foot upon these formations, now they're like the sunken city of the Atlantis.




4. Manhattan from the top of Rockefeller Plaza

It's awesome to see how this prolifically lighted skyscrapers mushroomed the island and awful to know how this state's ground been burdened by it. Like twinkling stars from heaven, only that theirs are on earth, Manhattan from the Rockefeller Plaza or any where else, is no compare.


5. Istanbul Skyline from the Bosphorus strait, Turkey
The Bosphorus strait, which runs squarely through the middle of Istanbul, famously divides Europe and Asia. You've got to behold the spawning villages, houses and mosques whose towering minarets is as awesome as a fairy tale told at best. Both sides of the city slope down to the water like an urban valley. The view from Galata Bridge includes several of the city’s incredible mosques.



6. The Ngorongoro Crater from North Ngorongoro Crater Lodge, Tanzania
Where in the world should the most feared natural tormenter when at it's 'best' would also be nature's best expression of luscious beauty. Nonetheless the Ngorongoro Crater is a perfect definition for this, you would even think it's a piece of earth full of hot mass. It is one of the world’s largest calderas, which are formed when volcanoes explode and collapse upon themselves. Now it teems with wildlife like elephants, lions, tigers, wild birds and a lot more.



7. St. Paul’s Waterloo Bridge, London
First, Waterloo Bridge had been instrumental in some songs or some manners of songs – it completes it. It is frankly situated on the fore bend of the Tames that gives leeway to one of the best views in London. By east towards the city is St. Paul's Cathedral (seemingly like that of the U.S. Capitol) like a “her majesty” queen seated snootily on her throne and some skyscrapers seems to bow down on her.



8. The Golden Gate Bridge from the Marin Headlands

Walking across the Golden Gate Bridge is vastly overrated; it’s incredibly windy, and rushing traffic is just steps away. You’re much better off heading up to the Marin Headlands (particularly Hawk Hill) and taking in the view from a calm park bench, with the Bay, the bridge, the city and the blue Pacific spread out far below.



9. Machu Picchu, Peru
Perched on a mountain ridge high above the Urumba Valley in central Peru, this remarkable Incan city is surrounded on three sides by steep valleys, giving visitors the distinct impression that they’re hovering in air. The fact that the ruins are frequently draped in a light cloud layer only adds to the thrilling vertigo of the place.




10. The Yucatan Peninsula from the top of Chichen Itza, Mexico
It’s 365 steps to the top of El Castillo, the main temple of this sprawling Mayan city, but the view from the top is well worth it. The soft green expanse of Yucatan jungle stretching out in every direction is truly mesmerizing. And with a good pair of binoculars, you can spot distant ruins rising up from the canopy.



11. Florence from the loggia of Villa San Michele, Italy
The town of Fiesole, perched on a hillside northeast of Florence, was where wealthy Florentines chose to escape the heat and humidity of the Arno River Valley in the gardens of their lavish villas. The Villa San Michele was constructed in the 15th century and is now a famous hotel. A loggia (open-sided gallery) runs along one side of the building, from which you can look out across the entire city of Florence, an expanse of terra-cotta roofs dominated by the great dome of its 14th-century cathedral. The view, which has changed little in 500 years, offers a kind of time travel back to the world of the High Renaissance.


12. Paris from the Pont des Arts, France
A pedestrian bridge across the Seine, the Pont des Arts is at the epicenter of Paris. On the right bank is the Cour Carrée of the Louvre; on the left, the Institut de France; directly upstream is the façade of Notre Dame Cathedral. Standing on the bridge, the great art historian Kenneth Clark famously remarked: “What is civilization? I do not know. … But I think I can recognize it when I see it: and I am looking at it now."



13. The Medina of Fes from the Palais Jamai, Morocco
The ancient walled city of Fes is dramatically sited in a bowl of hills. From the Palais Jamai (now a hotel) you gaze down on the white and beige roofs of the medieval medina, a vast warren of alleys and courtyards in which it is all too easy to become hopelessly lost. At is center are the green-tiled roofs of the University of Al-Karaouine, founded in 859 and the oldest university in the world.



14. Annapurna from Sarankot, Nepal

The Himalayas are unlike any other mountains on earth: They are simply much bigger and grander. Arguments rage about which is the most unforgettable view: The Kangshung Face of Everest in Tibet; K2 from the snout of the Baltoro Glacier; Kanchenjunga across the tea terraces of Darjeeling. The list is endless. The first time I saw the Himalayas in all their incomparable splendor was from the village of Sarankot, 5,000 feet up in the foothills of Nepal. It is a famous panoramic view of immense peaks, dominated by the 26,000-foot Annapurna massif. And to this day, it remains my most indelible memory.


15. Sydney Harbour from Taronga Zoo, Australia
Which is the most spectacular harbor in the world: Rio, Hong Kong or Sydney? It’s hard to say, but on a sunny day, the view from Taronga Zoo across a yacht-strewn expanse of blue water to the Opera House, the Harbour Bridge and the towers of downtown Sydney certainly takes the cake.




16. The Potala Palace from across the Lhasa River, Tibet
Throughout the 19th century, Lhasa was the most mysterious city in the world, a magnet for intrepid European travelers. Today, it is a Chinese regional capital, increasingly swamped by shoddy and depressing concrete buildings. At its heart, however, the magnificent Potala Palace, the winter residence of Tibet’s Dalai Lamas, is still as extraordinary as ever. Its 13 stories are terraced 400 feet up the side of Marpo Ri (“Red Hill”), contain more than 1,000 rooms and have walls 16 feet thick. There are few more remarkable and impressive structures on earth.


17. The Parthenon from Mount Lycabettus, Athens, Greece
Athens is not a particularly beautiful city, but every time you turn a corner and catch a glimpse of the Parthenon, high on the Acropolis, your spirits are instantly lifted. The most stirring view is not from down in the city itself, however, but from the top of 900-foot Mount Lycabettus, one of the isolated limestone peaks that rise from the Plain of Attica. It is possible to walk to the summit through pine trees from Kolonaki, Athens’ chicest residential district.


18. The Lemaire Channel, Antarctica
Nicknamed “Kodak Gap,” the Lemaire Channel extends for seven miles between the Antarctic Peninsula and Booth Island. Snowcapped 3,000-foot peaks rise almost vertically from a sea littered with ice floes. For some reason, the water usually has a mirror-like surface, and the reflections, especially in December and January at the time of the midnight sun, are almost psychedelic.


19. The City Palace from the Lake Palace, Udaipur, India
The Lake Palace, apparently afloat in the middle of Lake Pichola, is an image familiar from innumerable photography books and India Tourist Board posters. But the view the other way, from the Lake Palace to the city of Udaipur, is equally, if not more, extraordinary. The colossal City Palace, a mass of golden stone rising from the sapphire waters of the lake, was a scene beloved by 18th- and 19th-century European watercolorists.


20. The Temples of Bagan, Myanmar

Dotted across a plain beside the Irrawaddy River in central Myanmar, the ruins of Bagan cover 16 square miles. Dozens of immense stupas and temples rise from the red, dusty soil, all that remains of a major city sacked by the Mongol Kublai Khan. The scene at sunrise is unforgettably romantic.





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3 comments:

  1. That "Udaipur palace" looks very similar to Mysore palace, I think that picture is wrong, that is in Mysore, Karnataka.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Wrong picture - its not udaipur

    http://www.true-history.com/travel/india/rajasthan/udaipur-city-palace/

    This is the True Udaipur palace picture

    ReplyDelete