Categories
World News

Things Around the World You Didn’t Know Were Banned

Lip-synching, jogging and samosas. Do you know what all of these things have in common? Though seemingly innocuous, each one has been outlawed somewhere in the world.

In some cases, these bans were instituted very reasonably, in response to political unrest, to preserve health and public safety, or to honor religious doctrine. But there are also a surprising number of things — including, yes, gold teeth, sandcastles and the honey-loving bear Winnie the Pooh — that have been banned without legal justification, often due to the machinations of a power-drunk dictator.

If you’re keen to learn the why behind some of the most bizarre items and activities ever banned, keep reading.

Popular in South East Asia, the durian fruit has the round shape of a large cantaloupe, and its outer shell is covered with thick stubs that are reminiscent of porcupine skin. But beyond its odd physical appearance, what people tend to remember about the durian fruit is its foul and pungent odor.

When the late Anthony Bourdain was asked to describe the smell and taste of durian fruit, he said it’s “indescribable, something you will either love or despise…Your breath will smell as if you’d been French-kissing your dead grandmother.”

Food writer Richard Sterling has also described it in less-than-glowing terms, once comparing it to “turpentine and onions, garnished with a gym sock.”

The smell is so bad that Singapore has banned the fruit from mass transit, and some taxi drivers will refuse to pick up passengers in possession of it.

However, despite its stinky reputation, durian is used heavily in South East Asian cooking, and some believe the fruit can tame fevers and serve as an aphrodisiac.

Categories
World News

Dutch family living in isolation on farm for 9 years

Dutch authorities were Tuesday trying to piece together the story of a family found living isolated from the outside world in the rural east of the Netherlands.

The authorities found a father and six adult children hidden in the basement of a remote farmhouse where they had reportedly spent years “waiting for the end of time”. Some of those freed “had no idea that other people existed,” the station added.

Mayor Roger de Groot said that the family is believed to have lived for nine years on the farm in Ruinerwold, 130 kilometers (80 miles) northeast of Amsterdam.

Drone images of the farm showed a cluster of buildings with a large vegetable garden on one side. The small property appeared to be ringed by a fence and largely obscured by trees.

“I have never come across anything like this before,” de Groot told a press conference. He told reporters the siblings were aged from 18-25. He said their mother is believed to have died “a number of years ago.”

Local police said in a tweet that officers visited the farm after being alerted by somebody “concerned about the living conditions” of its residents.

Police said they arrested a 58-year-old man who rented the property, but it wasn’t immediately clear why or what his relationship was to the family. Police said he wasn’t the father.

Police investigating the farm found “a number of improvised rooms where a family lived a withdrawn life,” De Groot said in a statement.

Local bar owner Chris Westerbeek told broadcaster RTV Drenthe that he called police after a man “with a confused look in his eyes,” with unkempt hair, a long beard and old clothes walked in to his bar and ordered five beers for himself.

“He said where he came from, that he’d run away and that he needed help urgently,” Westerbeek said.

De Groot said the police investigation is looking into “all possible scenarios,” but didn’t elaborate.

He said the family was now “in a safe place receiving appropriate care and attention.”

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Categories
What to do in Albania

The mills trail of Albania

Become a part of Albanian’s hidden treasures

Escape the ordinary and visit this beautiful passage

Original article was published at: http://albania.al/activity/tours/the-mills-trail/

We don’t claim ownership over the content, we are sharing just to promote Albanian Tourism. Please visit: http://albania.al/activity/tours/the-mills-trail/

As you are driving down from the Llogara mountain, while you are enjoying the beauty of the nature that accompanies your road, looking down just a little bit from your car window, you spot a small village between hills and ranges that also has a wide outlet to the sea. With its white-painted houses, gracefully composed one over the other on the mountain slope, where high bell towers of churches stand out, the village of Dhermi is recognized for its climate and magical coast as well as for the great number of small churches and their monumental, ethnographic, aesthetic and historical value. Historical data show that this beautiful coastal Albanian village has been populated from the early ages of antiquity, through medieval to modern times. Divided in three neighborhoods (Hondraqi, Gjileka and Dhermi, which together make up the village), Dhermi with its captivating panoramas has inspired painters and writers, who gave life to their works while enjoying the views and small paths that this village has to offer. If you are a little bit like them or if you are just looking for a motivating amble, trekking through the trail of the old mills is a must-do. The name comes from the 7 mills that were found while building the path, so listen carefully and let the mills tell you a story: This is the very footpath that the locals have trodden for centuries. Visitors can take the route along the running stream, rest under the shade of high trees while enjoying the chirps of birds and gaze the trail that connects village houses with the blue sea. As you saunter along the trail, the history accompanies you in every step you take, you can visit two ancient churches, the picturesque waterfall, the tracks of the first hydropower station ever built in Albania’s villages, the old mills, and other attractive sites. Walking across the trail you see an ancient chapel known as Saint Stefanos church. Built in the 12th century, it still remains on its grounds astonishing its visitors. The church of Ipapandia is a gem of history itself. Built in the 15th century, its walls still remain proud and strong welcoming every tourist. The well-preserved interior mural frescoes, are believed to have been painted by Nikolla Joani, a distinguished Albanian medieval painter. This church stands out for its carved and engraved ceiling decorated with floral designs and portraits of saints. A portrait of Alexander the Great of Macedonia is also featured in this church. As you continue walking, while enjoying the breeze and the fresh air, hidden in the treasures of nature you will find the first hydropower ever built in an Albanian village. The staff that built this hydropower in 1952 were paid with the revenues generated from the sale of power to village households. The hydropower was built on financial and material contributions of Dhermi people who immigrated to the United States. Walking across the trail not only is inspirational but also cultural. It’s time to escape the ordinary and visit this beautiful passage.

Please visit: http://albania.al/activity/tours/the-mills-trail/

Categories
Visit Albania

The 9 most drop-dead gorgeous bays of the Albania’s Ionian coast

Are you looking for some intimate virgin beaches where you can spend some quiet vacations? We offer you a list of 8 most beautiful bays of the Ionian coast. You will find here not only spectacular views and some of the best beaches, but also the peace you are searching for.

1. Brisani Bay

An amazing bay with a breathtaking view. Brisani Bay in Karaburun has a beauty beyond words.

2. Saint Andreas Bay

A hidden paradise of the Southern Albania, the Saint Andreas Bay is a treasure of the Ionian coastline.

3. Grammata Bay

Grammata bay is one of the most extraordinary places you can visit during your vacations in the Ionian coast. The values of this natural monument are scientific, historical, archaeological, cultural and touristic. In addition, this beautiful seaside resort attracts visitors as a small intimate beach.

4. Kakome bay

For many years, Albania has been an insolated and military state, where many natural beauties have been hidden from public. However, today you have the chance to explore many of those sites. For instance, an example is Kakome bay, an ex-military outpost with a private beach that has a fine white sand and gravel, the variation of blue see and the surrounding greenery make it a true paradise.

5. Gjipe bay

The beach of Gjipe, the most remotely accessed beach of the region, is created in a very special way. Its shore it’s formed by a creek and on both sides of the beach there is a magnificent canyon. It has quite a picturesque view and here you will find what it might be Albania’s most beautiful beach.

6. Llamana bay

Llamana Beach, this somehow hidden corner, on the coast of Himara, is so lovely that the tourists find themselves between the sea, mountain and sky that become like one.

7. Megalhora bays

Megalhora bays in Drymades are truly magic. Surrounded by big rocks and also small hills, these virgin beaches offer spectacular views and also a quiet experience.

8. The Seagulls bay

Only 12 kilometers from Saranda this “hidden” destination in Albania offers a fantastic beach where you can spend some relaxing but also adventurous days.

9. Porto Palermo bay

Porto Palermo is a small but beautiful bay, where the water is so clear it looks like the boats are floating. The bay also has a historical value do to the fact that Ali Pashe Tepelena built a fortress that stands between the sea and the mountains in the perfect spot to distinguish the enemies during the war.

Categories
Visit Albania

Blue Eye of Albania

The Blue Eye or “Syri i Kaltër” in albanian, is a water spring and natural phenomenon occurring near Muzinë in Vlorë County. Definitely, it is a must-visit site if you have already made up your mind to visit Albania.

You will find people call it: a fairy tale-like spring, beautiful, colorful, unique, surreal beauty, etc. However, the best way to describe its beauty, it is to see it with your own eyes.

Considered a natural jewel, the wonder of Blue Eye in Albania, attracts so many tourist from around the world.

A popular tourist attraction, the clear blue water of the river bubbles forth from a stunning deep pool. Divers have descended to fifty meters, but it is still unclear what the actual depth of the carst hole is. The water that comes out has a constant temperature of 10 degrees Celsius. The Blue Eye spring, is the initial water source of Bistricë river, 25 km long, which ends in the Ionian Sea south of Sarandë.

The source stands at an altitude of 152 m and has a discharge rate of 18400 l/s. The immediate area (180 ha) is a nature reserve and is characterized by oak and sycamore trees. In summer 2004, the source was temporarily dried up, then it was revived again.

Tip

An important tip for those who’d rather avoid the crowds with tourist is to try visiting it during the off-season.