Friday, 17 February 2012

LIGHTHOUSE POSTCARD FROM NORWAY

 Slettnes Lighthouse is located on the Barents Sea, at the Nordkyn peninsula, near the fishing village of Gamvik, Norway (71.05.03N  28.13.10E). It is considered the northernmost mainland lighthouse of the world. The 39 m (128 ft) round cast iron tower was first lit on September 15, 1905. During World War II the Germans used the lighthouse as an observatory position, but in October 1944, the German Army in full retreat, blew up the lighthouse station. The new station was designed by architects G.Blakstad and H. Munthe-Kaas and was completed in 1948. The new tower was painted red with two white horizontal bands, has 9 storeys and a spiral 139-steps staircase. Electrified in 1956 and automated in 2005 the lighthouse is protected by a 1998 cultural heritage act, and is situated in a nature reserve rich in migratory birds and Arctic vegetation. From the end of May to mid July, many tourists visit Gamvik to see the natural phenomenon of the midnight sun and it is possible to book accommodation at the Slettnes light station buildings.
Norway Post issued on April 27, 2007 its famous annual tourist stamps presenting unique landscapes in a set of six stamps. The self-adhesive A (Priority Worldwide) stamp features the beautiful village of Reine on the Lofoten island of Moskenesøya.  The area is known for its picturesque mountains, much like an alpine landscape which offers many rock climbing and mountaineering opportunities. The main areas for mountaineering and climbing are on Austvågøya and Moskenesøya.

Sunday, 5 February 2012

LIGHTHOUSE POSTCARD FROM RUSSIA

 Murmansk is a city and seaport in the extreme north-west part of Russia, on the Kola Bay. A memorial in honor of the 85th anniversary of the city was opened near Lake Semyonovskoye in 2002. The memorial includes a 28 m (92 ft) hexagonal cylindrical tower, painted with red and white horizontal bands, the Lighthouse Monument. This lighthouse is not a genuine aid to navigation. There is a Memorial Hall in the basement part of the lighthouse, each wall of the hall is devoted to the memory of fishermen who perished at sea in peacetime, to sea transport workers, to military seamen, and to pilots of shipborne aviation. There is also a Memorial Book containing the names of those who did not return from the sea. These include the crew of the nuclear submarine Kursk, pride of the Northern Fleet, which sank with the loss of all 118 on board in the Barents Sea in 2000 - Russia's worst peacetime naval disaster and a tremendous blow to national pride.
Russia Postal Administration issued on July 4, 2005 a set of three lighthouse stamps and this beautiful postcard shows two light stamps located at the White Sea and their precise location on the map. The 5.00 stamp depicts the Mud'yugskiy Lighthouse built in 1838 on an island just off the main entrance to the Dvina delta in Arkhangel'sk. The 40m (131 ft) round stone tower is the oldest lighthouse of the Russian North.
The 8.00 stamp shows the Svyatonossky Lighthouse located at the west side of Svyatoy Nos peninsula, between the White Sea and the Barents Sea. The 22 m (72 ft) yellow-orange octagonal wood tower was first lit in August 1863 and is considered a national historic monument.

LIGHTHOUSE POSTCARD FROM JAPAN

 Hinomisaki  is a port town located at the north coast of Shimane Prefecture  facing  the Sea of Japan. The Izumo Hinomisaki Lighthouse stands on a steep and rocky cape and is the tallest lighthouse in Japan. The construction of the tower stated in 1900 by the Scottish engineer Richard Brunton and the Japanese engineer Yoshihiko Aya. Aya designed a building structure known as “double shell” resistant to earthquakes and the  44 m (145 ft) round stone tower  was first lit on April 1, 1903 during the Meiji Period. The lighthouse survived to the Great Kantō earthquake in 1923, World War II air strikes and the Great Hanshin earthquake (or Kobe earthquake) in 1995. Electrified in 1918 and automated on March 31, 1974 the Hinomisaki Light receives many tourists daily attracted to the panoramic view of the Sea of Japan and the beautiful sunset seen from the upper gallery (over 150 steps). The former lighthouse keeper' cottage now houses a visitor center and a gift shop.