Destined to be a port, Rotterdam became the most non-Dutch city of the country. It is the only city in the Netherlands headed by Muslim mayor, it is also a home for the largest Caribbean diaspora and even has its own China Town. Innate inhabitants and comers are almost equally numbered here. But if we look seven centuries back, we will see only a modest settlement on the Rotte River protected by dam from floods.
A small fishing village reborn into the world's largest port? Sure! Strategic location of Rotterdam – it is comfortably settled on the banks of the Rhine and the Meuse rivers – predetermined its hasty growth from the end of XIV century until today. Hundreds of thousands cargoes passing through the Dutch port were transported through waterways into Germany, France, Switzerland, thereby forcing the city to grow new and new harbours and maritime terminal in order to cope with the powerful stream. Later, thanks to the artificial channel, large ocean-going vessels began to be serviced there.
Rotterdam attained a Phoenix-like fate. Hitler's bombardment of the city, which lasted for five days, resulted into scorched earth and buildings demolished to the ground. But both city image and blown docks were quickly restored, and since 1962 the Dutch port has been the busiest in the world, holding the lead for no less than 42 years.Photo ipanematravels.com
Rotterdam strikingly distinguishes from the capital by its hard-working nature. As the locals often joke: money is spent in Amsterdam, and earned in Rotterdam. The city is in constant motion - no idleness. Perhaps it is a reason for the city to look younger. Not every tourist believes in the venerable age of Rotterdam staring at the Netherlands highest skyscrapers located in the city heart (the country's largest office centre Maastoren extends to the sky at 164 meters, and the most grandiose residential building in Rotterdam the New Orleans has a height of 158 m).
Only sky is the limit, armed with this motto the architects turned a working town into some kind of Manhattan on the Meuse. It's New York City which comes into mind while walking through Wilhelminapier – the place with the largest concentration of skyscrapers and offices. From here through futuristic, reminiscent of swan Erasmus Bridge one can reach Rotterdam centre with its incredible cubic structures (roofs shaped like inclined parallelepipeds), the White House and the basilica in the late Gothic style – the Great Church.Photo architecturaldigest.com
Going to the old port area of Delfshaven, note that you risk to repeat our mistake and not to reach it before dark. Explanation of this phenomenon is not in a long multi-kilometre road, but in numerous museums nested on the way: the Boijmans-van Beuningen (a collection of paintings including works by Rembrandt, Brueghel and Rubens), Chabot (dedicated to the works of this artist) and Kunsthal sadly remembered for bold theft of eight paintings in 2012. And a final flourish is the Netherlands Architecture Institute located nearby and featuring one of the world largest collections in this form of art.
And yet, coming to Rotterdam, you should clearly understand what you want to see the most as the choice directly depends on the season. For instance, if you come into the city in summer, late July - early August, then you will meet colourful carnival that fills the air with the Caribbean and Latin American melodies. In September residents celebrate the port fest resulting in a water parade. And the first month of the year Rotterdam International Film Festival is held, which involves mostly alternate film directors.Photo trover.com
And let’s add for Amsterdam fans that there are also coffee shops in Rotterdam, and prices there, by the way, are lower than in the iconic city on the Amstel. Another difference of the local entertainments from those of the capital, is that nightclubs support mostly hip-hop music, not techno. On this remarkable differences seem to be over. And it is up to you there to go first. But we advise to visit both cities.
Often the Balkan countries are deemed to be something very close to us in terms of mentality, culture and traditions, that traveling there seems to be something second-rate, no match for a trip to Europe, or to some islands. However, today we would like to tell about magic Balkan cities that can compete with the much favoured tourist centres!
This mysterious eastern country can surprise even the most experienced tourist. We are convinced of this and will gladly tell you why. And let's start with the fact that tourism in today's Turkmenistan is a rather promising and dynamic economic sector.
Today in our review dedicated to the most interesting streets of the planet we are going to talk about Brivibas. The old city of Riga is truly magnificent and finely preserved part of Latvian capital. Verily here there are more tourists and less local citizens, however, 350-400 years ago around it there was nothing and city resembled inaccessible medieval fortress in semi-Scandinavian and semi-European style. All of its population could place here…
A function of UNESCO World Heritage Committee is to work in the most careful manner year after year on studying objects that constitute outstanding culture civilizations and are unique in their origins. Under number 569 of an impressive list of the organization city of Gjirokastër, the one from the south of Albania, is located – it is it we are going to study today through the length and breadth.
In the world there are two Cartagenas. In both, their inhabitants speak Spanish, love bullfighting, and in the evenings they go to the beach to skip the mojito and breathe the salty wind. But only in one of them a rhythm of hot salsa, placers of emeralds and pearls can burst into a languid city walk, and bright, hot beauties can cross the road. And this is Colombia!
Countries often flaunt their natural beauties: they invite tourists allowing them to examine closely every detail of jewellery coined by the nature. Among beauties, there are some that are the most extravagantly bright, showy and bizarre, and sometimes even wild for our eyes. African Ethiopia grabbed one of the most beautiful accessories - Dallol volcano.
Try to guess name of this city and its location: the Croats and the Slovenes are scurrying here and there, they drink beer no worse than regular customers of the best Austrian breweries and combine it with snack of pasta and local seafood. You are unlikely to grasp immediately what it is all about, but we unveil it for you as our today story is about the Italian city of Trieste.
When winds start wandering among those stone, caressing peaks of sand barchans and forcing down rare vegetationm entire space around gets filled with marvellous sounds. Herdsmen, who happen to spend nights in one of the most mysterious deserts of the globe, tell about drumrolls, enchanting sounds of flute and voices, murmuring something indistinguishable.
To visit three countries over one day – it is possible if you are in Aachen. Situated amid Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands, small student town took in features of medieval culture that reflected in its astonishing architecture. Yelena Buravtsova visited the town for it to win her heart with its off-beat monuments, streets paved with stone blocks, cozy cafés, one of a kind printed spice cake, museums and spectacular races.
Even being adults, sometimes we are able to bring to life the children’s fantasies, see the stories from childish dreams, and embody what has seemed to be the fairytale. Have you ever dreamt of being in the whale’s chaps? Just imagine that you were swollen by the giant fish, and you were living there for a long time, looked at it inside, settled down there, swam and dived there?
Impressions of this city depend much on what you have visited before being introduced to it. After Los Angeles it may seem very business-like and culturally rich, after New York – provincial and old-fashioned somehow. In any case, it has a bright and memorable face of a gentleman from Massachusetts.
The Japanese are very creative people, especially when it comes to rice. If they have some extra spare time and large spacious rice paddies, then routine process of growing an agricultural crop turns into art...
Eastern cities are hard to imagine without a huge number of the commercial places. It is in the genes of the local citizens to sell and buy regardless their age and status. Despite the fact that Istanbul is semi-European city, the metropolis has prominent oriental features. So as to know exactly where to go and what to buy, OUTLOOK talks about the most spectacular markets after returning from Istanbul.
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.
They build ice hotels and carve ice fountains pouring white wine, make samovars and even kerosene lamps. Photographers went even far and got the hand to use dry ice to create the effect of smoke and fog in picture. In the spirit of holidays, OUTLOOK prepared for you a selection of the world most popular ice arenas.
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.
There are hardly many travelers who would go somewhere further than city centre where their hotel is situated when on a short-term journey. And if location is a metropolis on top of everything else, such “outside” trips are sure to be put on hold till better occasions.