Monday, July 13, 2015

World Heritage Sites in China (10) - Longmen Grottoes

Last week, I took a trip to Luoyang city which is located in Henan province of central China. The city is one of the Four Great Ancient Capitals of China and it is noted for the Longmen Grottoes, a World Cultural Heritage site (2010, UNESCO).

The Big Vairocana and other massive Buddhist sculptures in the main grotto.

I bought a book "One hundred questions about the Longmen Grottoes" . A lot of things to learn, to know more about it ... The ticket is actually a pre-paid postcard (with domestic postage only ), some posting boxes are available inside the site so you can just write an address to share with your friend.

A small post office is found outside the site, located in the business street  near the ticker office. Some nice postcards are available, about the grottoes also the city of Luoyang. 

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Lagoons of New Caledonia

A stunning view of Lagoons of New Caledonia: Reef Diversity and Associated Ecosystems, a UNESCO site since 2008. The special stamp features the Year of Horse issued in Feb 2014 by OPT-NC . Many thanks to Georges for this gorgeous postcard with so special a stamp for me! It was sent on 28th Feb from
Calédoscope and arrived in the General Post Office of HK on 18th March.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Faroe Islands and Iceland - from Jiayi's honeymoon

After my friend Jiayi's trip to Faroe Islands in 2012 supported by Posta (Faros Island), he decided to go on a honeymoon again with his wife in the future. Now it comes true. These two postcards shown below were sent from Faroe Islands and Iceland , both very precious for me. Thank you Jiayi and Xiaomi.. :DD I am sure you had wonderful time in these beautiful islands!

Friday, April 4, 2014

St. Paul's Pool, Pitcairn Islands

Pitcairn Islands is one of the British Oversea Territories located in the Pacific, very remote (accessible only by ship) and with less than 60 inhabitants. St. Paul's Pool is one of Pitcairn Island's most stunning natural attractions, featuring a sea carved tidal pool of crystal clear waters and abundant marine life. Many thanks to Louise for this beautiful postcard with nice stamps. :-)

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Local Market of Guadeloupe

Such a great colorful postcard shows a local market in the Grande-Terre island of Guadeloupe.. really a big surprise found in my mail box, thank you so much Olga. ;-) Definitively a prefect one for my market collection, also a very first one from this new "country" to me! Olga told me  such small markets are very popular there and they are only the places where you can buy local fresh fruits while big supermarkets do not offer! The Hermes stamp of France is very nice too! The card was sent from the island of Basse-Terre, where the administrative capital located in, as the clear postmark shows.

Friday, March 14, 2014

The Year of Horse - when Japanese postcards meet Hong Kong stamps

resulting in these maximum cards.. :-)
The first one is the best I have made this year, the postcard is a new year greeting card from Japan. It is called 年贺状, very important in Japanese culture, every one will prepare some for their relatives and friends and the postman is always busy delivering them at the first day of the new year. On 11th Jan 2014, when Hong Kong Post issued the year of horse stamps, I use one of them and the special postmark to make the maximum cards. The stamp valued HK$1.7 features a pony made of colorful floral patchwork fabric, which is a traditional Chinese handicraft art putting paper-cutting, embroidery and craftsmanship together. Many thanks to Ai from Kyoto for providing me the card!
The second one is also a 年贺状. Japanese items are always delicate, I have to say. Actually this one is a stamped and written card sent by Akiko(明子) from Kitakyushu city. The stamp is one of those dedicated for the year of horse by Japan Post and it features a calligraphy of Chinese character "Horse", very nice and impressive , also with embossing effect (so does the postcard itself). I had a difficulty when requesting the post office for a special postmark because they said there is already a postmark of Japan post on the backside so they are not able to put additional one of Hong Kong on the front side. I have nothing to say but Hong Kong Post have some strange even incomprehensible postal rules. Lucky, finally I got it with the aid of a friend who is very familiar with the staffs of post office. :D Many thanks to Akiko!

Hong Kong Post does a very good job in making money by the chance of issuing new year stamps. You can see below that they issued 4 stamps and 1 mini-sheet also very expensive silk(HK$50) and gold/silver sheets (HK$100). There have many associated  philatelic products on sales too such as different kinds of FDCs, greetings cards and packs. They does have market because people love these items. In general, all of these were sold out at the first day of issue except the expensive sheets.

At the issuing days, all post offices in Hong Kong (more than 120) offer special postmark cancellation service, they also offer other kinds of postmarks, if available. 

Monday, February 24, 2014

Wild Horse of Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos Islands

I received this precious postcard sent from Grand Turk, the biggest island in the Turks Islands (got via Andy's vacation RR) . Turks Islands is a part of the Turks and Caicos Islands, a British Overseas Territory. I never thought a wild horse would appear on a card from a Caribbean island but it does! On the front side it reads "Grand Turk - where wild horses still roam the island ", and from the back side you can also know " Wild horses are a common sight on Grand Turk. They are descendants from those left from the salt mining days". Many thanks to TBC/Robinson of USA who sent me it during their holidays! It is also a prefect one for the Chinese Horse Year of 2014! :)