I find that the really good part of being "trapped" in Planet Earth, and the one that makes me want to jump!, is that we get the chance to explore the many wonders and awe striking phenomena of nature -which can sometimes really bring tears to my eyes and move me in very special transcendental ways- plus, we have the benefit of having at our disposal an immense array of human production, from architecture to gastronomy, from design to literature, every aesthetic manifestation of our great creative potential; art in its different forms can occasionally have that divine little thing that makes me feel flabbergasted, touched or even changed. I hope to share some of the "God on Earth" practical experiences that I've collected during my travels through this humble blog.
Oaxaca is a colonial city located in the green, mountainous area of south Mexico. With a thriving contemporary artist scene and producer of some of the most original and beautiful folk art in the country, Oaxaca represents a cultural hub for Mexico's past and present cultural history. It is also home to one of the oldest prehispanic ancient cities in Mesoamerica build by the Zapotec people, today the archeological site of Monte Alban.
Relatively isolated due to its geographic location, Oaxaca has remained a small clean town with a fantastic cultural offer. A range of museums, archeological sites, galleries and handicraft shops make the city a charming and folkloric experience amidst the green landscape, fresh air and pleasant weather that the mountainous area of Oaxaca State offers.
Santo Domingo Church in Oaxaca
To learn and see more about the City of Oaxaca and the archeological site of Monte Alban, visit the following articles:
Australia is a huge country that, unless you are planning to spend a few months traveling through the whole island, can only be visited in regions. As distances between points of interest can be huge, travelers are faced with the decision of which part of Australia to give priority to. The following articles can help you in your decision, by giving a complete outline of the kind of trip you may have in each of the regions. After you´ve read them you´ll have a clear idea of the advantages and disadvantages of each one of them and be prepared to decide, based on realistic expectations, on which part of Australia to visit first.
Thailand is one of the friendliest places on earth, one of the many countries in Southeast Asia that offers an amazingly rich and colorful culture, embedded in a beautiful and exuberant tropical environment. Nevertheless, Thailand stands out because of its people. Thais make foreigners feel welcomed and at home with their kind, interested and open attitude towards the rest of the world, a positive and loving vibration that definitely marks a difference.
A visit to Thailand is a non-stop exciting adventure full with color, beautiful folk and traditional art, incredible and moving traditions, exquisite and delicate cuisine, electrifying nature, and a curious blend between ancient history and modern life, all involved in human warmth.
One of the most attractive art forms you will see in Thailand is Buddhist art, which comprises a vast catalogue of architectural gems and awe provoking sculptures that can´t help but astound its observers. As it well deserves, I have dedicated a whole article to Buddhist art, in which I show a taste of the amazingly detailed creativity and beauty of Thais' inventiveness in what religious art is concerned:
Chang Mai Old City in Northern Thailand, its unique Buddhist temples and the contrast between rural and westernized influences mingled in today’s folk culture.
Furthermore , because of the fact that Thailand wouldn´t be the same with the charm and kind nature of Thai people, I have dedicated a second article in which Thais' personality is analyzed through their religious beliefs´, how their Buddhist teachings shape the way they see life, and generate paradigms that filter through in everything they do, including their friendly behavior towards other human beings:
Vietnam has a very accidented landscape, which has been sculpted and transformed by natural forces, throughout centuries, to bring about some of the most unusual and beautiful environments I have seen. Two examples of these amazing sites are "Halong Bay" and "Tam Coc". Both of these natural wonders are analogous archipelagos with bizarre and huge rock formations that protrude from the sea (in the case of Halong Bay) and the land (in the case of Tam Coc), but different in that "Halong Bay" is located in the turquoise waters of the Gulf of Tonkin in north Vietnam, which means it is a sea attraction, while "Tam Coc" is embedded amongst emerald rice-paddies and the Ngo Dong River.
Tam Coc, Vietnam
Halong Bay, Vietnam
I´ve already posted a link to the article which describes and gives information on Tam Coc, with beautiful images of the whole experiential visit; nevertheless, I´m posting it again for those who missed it:
Ubud is considered the “Capital of Balinese Culture” in the tropical and beautiful Indonesian Island of Bali. It is a town located in a lovely mountainous area and surrounded by an incredibly green tropical environment, with luscious vegetation and charming country sides.
Besides its natural beauty, Ubud is a good base from which to visit many Hindu temples and take in the historical background of this culturally rich area. While visiting the archeological sites, one can also witness the religious traditions of Bali´s population and the country lifestyle.
Ubud also has several art galleries and museums, “Wayang” Puppet Theater, interesting local music and Balinese dance performances that are everything from extremely mold-braking and bizarre, particularly so for the occidental culture, to an explosion of artistic beauty and attention to detail. Balinese Dance, accompanied by gamelan music, portrays some of the most fantastic and imaginative characters this art form can produce.
The article “Ubud, Indonesia: Capital of Balinese Culture“ has a more detailed overview of Ubud: Indonesian culture, including its different art forms, things to do in Bali; photographs of Hindu temples, Ubud´s art scene, traditions and countryside, a Bali Map, Accommodation and Indonesian Food.
Vietnam is a country that has been beautifully sculpted by natural phenomena and is full of amazing and improbable landscapes all around.
The Grottos of Tam Coc, otherwise known as "Halong Bay on the Rice Paddies", are a wonderfull example of Vietnams such beauty. Tam Coc is the name given to the natural scenery were caves, gigantic rock formations with imposible verticallity, rice paddies, Vietnamese peasants and the Ngo Dong River come together to create a charming and lovely, all-green natural envirament, that is pretty much worth the visit.
To read more about Tam Coc please read the full article "Grottos of Tam Coc on the Rice Paddies of Vietnam" were you will find information about Vietnam and its majestic natural phenomena, plus beautifull images, map and where, when and how to go.
The mountainous town of Ubud, in the Indonesian island of Bali, is a charming village located amongst the emerald and vibrant green mountains and valleys of this tropical island. Besides being a culturally rich place to visit, having plenty of galleries, temples and ancient buildings, it has a vast offering of Balinese Dance performances which transport the onlooker to an extraordinary world of bizarre, undefined creatures, incredible artistic detail, and extravagant imagination.
If you would like to be transported to an ancient and unworldly Balinese dance, please be my guest and take a look into the fantastic realm of Indian epics and Javanese culture in my Photographic Documentary of Balinese Dance, which has also a brief overview of its history and characteristic traits. Thanks for dropping by, I hope you enjoy it.
Gili Trawangan (Gili meaning island) is one of the tinniest islands in Indonesia, a country composed of little islands surrounded by an increadible variety of coastline sceneries, which go from the far extreme of black sanded beaches -as in Lovina in Bali- to absolute white, fine and soft sanded beaches like the ones of Gili Trawangan.
The island is so tinny that you can walk around it in about 2 hours, but it has a tremendous natural beauty and a special magnetism that is truely captivating and unique. If you are a beach person and an admirer of natures mystifing beauty, Gili Trawangan is, in my opinion, one of the best destinations in the world. Its natural and social charm go beyond words, I can only describe the valuable things that are present in this island and talk about my humble experience, as any editorial traveler would do, please go to my article on Gili Trawangan to read the full description and enjoy the photodocumentation of my experience.