Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Wordless Wednesday

Li-river boat cruise from Guilin to Yangshuo

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Throwback Thursday

The ‪‎trails‬ maybe ‪‎crooked,‬ winding‬, lonesome‬ and dangerous‬. But it can lead to the most ‪‎amazing‬ ‪‎view‬.......

Lake Kawaguchiko, Mount Fuji
4 ‎June, ‎2013

Friday, March 4, 2016

Greece Adventure Day 2 - Climb The Acropolis Part 4

By the time we finished  doing the Parthenon, the winter sun was up. The warmth of sun made the walk pretty pleasant. In fact  it didn't feel like it was winter, felt more like spring. 

We decided to take a  break. Found an empty bench nearby and took out our packed sandwiches to fill up our already growling stomachs.  

Can't think of any better spot for a pit stop than this one looking right at the Parthenon

After refueling, Nissa did her signature jumps

And Abe started paparazzing....

After everyone was happy (read: kenyang...) we walked to another main highlight inside the Acropolis - the Erechtheion. This is a sanctuary  made prominent by the Porch of the Caryatids with the six maidens supporting the southern portico.

The Erechtheion - an ancient Greek temple constructed on the Acropolis between 421 and 406 BCE in the Golden Age of the city  to house the ancient wooden cult statue of Athena.

Porch of the Caryatids where the real stars of the Erechtheion are the Caryatids or korai as they were known to the ancient Greeks.
The caryatids are female figures that serve as the architectural support for the entablature of a building.

Gigantic columns on the eastern side of the Erechtheion.

The Erechtheion was definitely an intricate temple. Beautiful and captivating; photography can't do justice to its beauty.

We couldn't stay long as the sun was already piercing sharp. Time to go. Time to say adieu to the Acropolis. 

One last shadow play with her furry friend on the Acropolis

Bye bye...Athens from up above the Acropolis

Nike saying byes to (Temple of) Nike

His way of saying good bye

Our way in was also the way out.

The Acropolis was by far one of the grandest of sites that impressed us more than we expected. There is a spirituality to standing atop the Acropolis that neither time nor cynicism can destroy.

Definitely worth the climb...a must do if you are in Athens!  

Greece Adventure Day 2 - Climb The Acropolis Part 3

As we were the few earliest visitors to the Acropolis complex, we took our time viewing this fortified citadel and state sanctuary of the ancient city of Athens. While walking to our next destination we imagined how magnificent it must have been during its glorious days. The many people who have taken the same path we did;  people like Alexander the Great, Plato, and Socrates just to name a few.

Careful steps at this slippery pathway. Perhaps it’s the strain of supporting so many visitors over so many thousands of years.

Moving forward we headed directly to the Parthenon. The temple of Parthenon was dedicated to the goddess Athena, protector of the Ancient city of Athens.

Parthenon is one of the most most famous buildings of the world. It was constructed at the initiative of Pericles, the leading Athenian politician of the 5th century BC.
Pediment of the Parthenon.
Detail of the metopes at the Parthenon
Elaborate Doric column of the Partnenon
Feeling just great to be at the Parthenon where it had everything from a temple, treasury, church, and mosque.

Found a Parthenon furry friend
And a very serious one this friend.....
Sprawling Athens from the Parthenon from the lookout point near the Parthenon
  A Greek flag at the lookout point

It has weathered time and man as such extra pampering does not hurt.  Restoration works on the Parthenon making progress.
The Parthenon we must say has its aesthetic appeal that emanates from the refinement of many established norms of Greek architecture. There was just so much expectation here and nothing beats being present and seeing how real it is with your very eyes.

 to be continued....

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Greece Adventure Day 2 - Climb The Acropolis Part 2

Since we were rather early, getting tickets into the Acropolis was a breeze. Perhaps winter is also not peak time for visit. Tickets were 12Euro for each adult and Nissa got to go in for free. Yeahhh....she belonged to the category of young people, under the age of 18 with show of  Identity Card or passport to confirm the age.

Olives vegetation on the foot of the Acropolis Hill

Entrance to the Acropolis complex -  all of marble.

All excited to go in. There’s so much expectation there, especially when you’ve seen so many photos of the Acropolis and now you are going to see it for for self!

Climb up the final set of stairs

What you'll see on the Acropolis Hill
The Acropolis is a great sanctuary of ancient Athens. It is dedicated primarily to its patron, the goddess Athena. It is the most celebrated myths of ancient Athens; all related to its greatest religious festivals and earliest cults.

The history of the Acropolis of Athens is long, with moments when democracy philosophy and art flourished, leading to its creation.

After we climbed the steps emerged a scattering of ruins that lies around.

After climbing the steps you are at the entrance, or the Propylaea, which was completed in 432 just before the outbreak of the Peloponnesian wars.


The main architect of Propylaea was Mnesicles. He used Pentelic marble and the design was avant-garde.

Superb architecture

Architectural splendor and engineering marvels

The roof of the Propylaea

If the column could talk.....

Everything that had been visible from a distance was now in front of me - just as seen photographed in the postcards.

Simple breath taking....these unique masterpieces of ancient architecture combine different orders and styles of Classical art in a most innovative manner and have influenced art and culture for many centuries
To be continued.....

Greece Adventure Day 2 - Climb The Acropolis Part 1

The Acropolis in Athens is a MUST see when you visit this city; even if it requires you to get up super early in order to beat the crowd and the striking sun. And that was what we did on our second day in Athens.

We actually slept very early the night before. Still jet lagged and the whole day walk about was enough to wear us down. But the body was still on Malaysian time and by 4am we were already wide awake (and hungry too..heh heh).

We settled for a very early breakfast and left the apartment by 7am. Took the Metro to the Airopoli Station and then walked up to the entrance on the Acropolis Hill.

The Akropoli Station - pretty deserted at 7am
The station is like a museum too. Findings of the ancient Athenians were discovered during the building of the metro station. They are displayed at the station. The Greeks have so much respects for these archaeological finds.
Frescoes on the Metro wall. The duo saying from W with Love. The "W" hand sign is the synonym to UW - Madison

The very wide walkway heading up to the Acropolis Hill.
Surprisingly winter in Athens was pretty mild. Temperatures range between 10C in the morning and by midday it got to around 20C. So it was really nice weather for walking.

Abe became a hit with the dogs that morning. Bill told us the day before that dogs in Athens are extra friendly with men who carried bag packs. Perhaps they thought that there was food in there. Many of these dogs were released by their owners. Times are bad and they can't afford to keep these dogs in their homes any longer. So they became strays - but very friendly strays.

He was huge! And he keep trailing Abe for quite some distance.

He was rather fierce. Kept barking at us.

Walking up towards the Acropolis Hill. We passed the garden with many olive trees.
These olive trees must have been there for a while

The uphill walkway leading up to the Acropolis Hill. Heavily guarded by the Greek Armed Forces
As we walked up we came to the Odeon of Herodes Atticus or the Herodeon. It was built in 161 AD by the Athenian magnate Herodes Atticus in memory of his wife.

This stone theatre structure is located on the southwest slope of the Acropolis of Athens.

It was originally a steep-sloped theater with a three-story stone front wall and a wooden roof made of expensive, cedar of Lebanon timber. It was used as a venue for music concerts with a capacity of 5,000.

The Odeon of Herodes Atticus - down looking up to the Acropolis Hill

To be continued...