Amazon River – the river that not only South America but our entire planet cannot be imagined without – seems to have been explored length and breadth. But somehow every year scientists find out something about it they’ve never thought of before. We tried to gather most interesting and least-known facts about it in our feature.
It owes its name to cultural knowledge of a Spanish conquistador Francisco de Orellana. While discovering South American lands in search for legendary El Dorado, conqueror and his troops sustained vicious attack of local aborigines and most bellicose among them were women. Upon having scarcely fought back, impressed Spaniard who wanted to give the river his own name first, recalled myths of Ancient Greece where a way of life of the Amazons was described – courageous representatives of the gentle sex. It was in their honor that Orellana called the basin.
In twentieth century Amazon River was involved in a dramatic competition with Nile River for the title of the world’s longest river. Calculations after calculation showed it and African giant take lead in turns. Only by the end of the century South American researchers arrived at a consensus with their Egyptian colleagues and admitted: Nile River is indeed longer but Amazon River channels far larger amounts of fresh water. The argument was over at that but the question remains if it is going to stay like this forever even more so with a tributary discovered somewhere in the Andes, the one that Amazon River seems to be starting from. It adds some kilometers to its length that already exceeds 7000…
If forests in general are “lungs of the planet” than tropics that spread along Amazon River constitute a superstation in terms of oxygen production. Just to think of it, over 20% of all air of the world is generated there. And all in all entire eco system is priceless for the planet therefore thoughtless deforestation is a global problem that needs to be solved in 21st century.
Speaking about records, we cannot but mention the fact that inside Amazon River’s basin, in the territory of Brazil, world’s largest river island, Marajó, is situated. Its territory can be compared to the territory of Switzerland.Photo tourthetropics.com
It seems like this gigantomaina penetrates everything that has to do with Amazon River. Among unique plants and animals that inhabit the area, Victoria amazonica (once called Victoria regia) water lily is especially distinctive. Just to think of it, its leaves reach 3 meters in diameter and can hold weight up to 50 kilograms.
Among animals inhabiting the river itself or neighboring territory, there are piranhas, cheetahs and anacondas however multi-colored frogs are considered most dangerous. There are several species of those, one scarier than another: venom of just one individual is enough to kill several dozens people at a time. Therefore locals wouldn’t even think of coming close to river banks without wearing extra thick boots.
Indian tribes that live in the vicinity of Amazon River are still poorly studied. All because their way of life is very reclusive and places they inhabit are hard to reach even having modern means of transport. However these people are very interesting, take at least the Marubo tribe. They have an ancient tradition of playing drums night and day in the same rhythm shifting each other. Thank to it entire tribe have their pulse synchronized and all dwellers feel like they are one. Medical specialists confirmed that heartbeat rates are almost identical even if the ones of children and elderly people are compared.Photofmtdata.ru
Amazingly, there still isn’t a single bridge build across Amazon River because not only is it long but also very wide – on some sections in periods of flood it turns into a real sea with about 80 kilometers of water between the banks! Only in 2010 a passage across one of its main tributaries Rio Negro was built. And altogether Amazon River has about 15 thousand tributaries…
In 2011 it was recognized as one of the Seven Wonders of Nature.
Many city dwellers are irritated by cats, dogs or even pigeons in the streets. Attempts of zoo-advocates to save them from attacks of people and from starvation are mainly ineffective. But there are wonderful cities in this world where people perfectly coexist with deer, peacocks and cattle…
Nature and heritage are above and beyond temporary drawbacks in infrastructure and services of Kyrgyzstan, which in terms of tourism is approaching to Georgia and Armenia. Let's consider this through the example of the cosy city of Karakol.
Kyrgyzstan is called Middle Asian Switzerland. Mountains, rivers, waterfalls, caves, cols and green meadows aren’t a speck inferior in terms of aesthetics to European ones yet travelers haven't duly appreciated this country so far. Across-the-board exploration of the land by the state’s guests has only just begun. And alongside hotels that are being swiftly erected, ordinary yurts are still offered for residence to feel local natural.
As a child I could spend hours gazing at the sky and spying majestic flocks of birds winging their way south. For a kid this movement was a real magic. Today my bookshelf hosts almost no books about magic, though I am still excited about feathered tribes travelling in hope to land on their winter grounds.
Ice and snow has long been used by artists to create different figures and objects, and only 1960, this age-old skill became a new trend of a land art! The largest number of winter artworks is created during special festivals about which we will tell our readers.
The cold season brings not only such important things as wrapping into a reindeer sweater, drinking hot chocolate and once again reviewing Christmas comedies. Thus, sport has not been canceled yet, so OUTLLOK compiled top five ski resort bucket list for you to cheer up and get out of your winter sleep.
When we hear about "water city", Venice immediately comes to mind, doesn’t it? Tranquil gondolas, narrow waterways, gentle light of the evening sun and ancient architecture create that heady romantic cocktail which attracts tourists from all over the world to the Italian city.
Many travelers just don’t want to go into all the troubles to get an American visa for some two weeks of holidays. But having glanced at pictures of Puerto Rican Mosquito Bay they’ll change their minds instantly. Dark sea slick, silence… when suddenly mysterious green glow from the depth extends the darkness to shock the public on the shore.
American writer Jon Krakauer wrote: ‘To the deserts go prophets and hermits; through deserts go pilgrims and exiles. Here the leaders of the great religions have sought the therapeutic and spiritual values of retreat, not to escape but to find reality’. OUTLOOK journalist Yelena Rasenko tried not to escape reality but find it in Jordan in one of the most amazing deserts of the world, in Wadi Rum.
When, if not now to conquer summits, overcome seas and climb on the rocks? People often make great efforts to enjoy the comfort through the whole lifetime. But sometimes our soul needs some romance, so OUTLOOK presents seven unique canyons.
Going to the Comoros a tourist wants to see pure exotic and immediately gets into an oasis of wildlife. "Moonlight" tenderness implicit in Arabic interpretation of the name "Comore" ("moon"), was taken from the neighbouring Madagascar, initially claimed to be called "Comoros".
After the legendary Frenchman Jacques-Yves Cousteau and his colleagues invented and perfected self-contained underwater breathing apparatus, scuba diving firmly entered the list of the most popular, but unfortunately, unsafe hobbies. OUTLOOK warns and talks about the most extreme places to do scuba diving.
Icy island of Greenland was first discovered by the Norwegian Vikings. This fact is surprising since this nomadic tribe had enough courage to penetrate into the harsh Arctic climate. We will not delve into searching for reasons which led warlike people to edge of the earth, but supply the modern traveller with the list of core Arctic attractions with a unique Greenlandic touch.
With the onset of summer, many of us ever and again cast a glance at the calendar, waiting for annual leave. And since summer vacation to a greater extent is linked to the relaxation by the water, we usually associate it with beaches – desirable destinations that can be very different.
At the bare mention of the word lake, our imagination pictures soothing, nostalgia-laden images of quite pond cosily embraced by the grassy hills. OUTLOOK prepared a selection of the most spectacular lakes, which will change your understanding of this work of nature. Each of them has something to surprise, whether it is unusual water shade, or frightening ability to petrify living creatures.
Lighthouse - this word evokes beautiful associations: sea adventures, storms, huge ships. And we do not want to dispel these thoughts, but rather to add fuel to the fire. There is a great amount of them in the world, they are striking by their beauty and inimitable. Today we are sharing with you the quintet of amazing lighthouses!
It has been known since olden times that wine-making process is a true art that is within the power only of the ones sincerely in love with their trade. Let alone beauty of masterpieces created by skillful hands – grape gardens, scattered in various nooks of the world, that impress with grandeur and adorn this planet, ornamenting it with bright juicy colors.
Very often nature tests people. From time to time we have to conquer and subjugate the elements. When men mastered construction of bridges, water obstacles have ceased to be a problem for humanity. However, what to do if a town is behind a pit, flatland or gorge? All-too-common "bridge" on pillars cannot be constructed everywhere.
Another world that is always sunny and green. The world, where it never snows; and it seems like there are no problems. And it is so distant – even mapwise. This is how I picture New Zealand. My long-distance acquaintance with the country began some five years ago. Back then a prominent ENT expert tried and failed to cure me from an allergy that was bugging me every spring.
The Times newspaper edition recognized Ålesund as the most beautiful town in Norway. It is not without reason: wayward sea, mesmerizing northern nature, famous fjords, fabulous multi-coloured houses in the Art Nouveau style and the legendary Trolls' Path, beckon those wishing to see the stunning wild landscapes.