Mérida, Mexico

The Most Exuberant of Meridas

Chariot drivers entertain themselves while waiting for passengers.
Mayan vendors loaded with handicrafts they try to sell to tourists they meet in Merida.
Agent Mian
Guard on duty in the historic building of the Merida cabildo.
Yucateca Vaqueria
Dance moment of a traditional show held on weekends in Mérida.
The Noche of Mérida
Trânsito skirts the central square of Mérida as the night strengthens over the Yucatan Peninsula.
Merida of All Colors
Bright colonial building against the blue sky of northern Yucatan.
A Blessed Life
Inhabitants of Mérida in front of the city's imposing cathedral.
Cathedral on Laurels
The Cathedral of Mérida overlooking the "forest" of laurels in the central square of Mérida.
good tone colleagues
Musicians rest in the central square of Mérida before entering service.
Mariachi painting
Store owner renews the painting of the mariachi doll at the entrance.
Mobile ice cream shop
Merida resident, next to the ice cream cart that supplies passersby in Plaza de Independencia.
Life under the Arcades
Merida residents walk in the shadow of the many arcades around Plaza de la Independencia.
Merida, colonial city
Limited traffic on one of the streets along the threshold of Plaza de la Independencia.
Framed Cathedral
The Cathedral of Mérida, seen from a cabildo balcony, overlooking the "forest" of laurel trees in the central square of Mérida.
The Garrida Life of Merida
Police and cyclist next to one of the exuberant walls of the city of Mérida.
History of Merida Below
Citizen of Mérida walks down the steps of a colonial building.
Near Night of Merida
Trânsito gives even more color to a street with colonial architecture from Merida.
Motherland Monument II
Indigenous Front of the Mexican Motherland Monument.
Motherland Monument
Taxi skirts one of the most emblematic monuments in Mérida, the Mexican Patria.
walk through history
Passersby pass by under old Mérida windows.
In 25 BC, the Romans founded Emerita Augusta, capital of Lusitania. The Spanish expansion generated three other Méridas in the world. Of the four, the Yucatan capital is the most colorful and lively, resplendent with Hispanic colonial heritage and multi-ethnic life.

Coming from the Caribbean Sea, the cold front that had visited that strange Mexican bulge was beginning to give way.

The owner of a souvenirs shop located in the Plaza Grande knew well that, when the sun began to peek through patches of azure blue, it would soon claim its tropical domain.

In agreement, not satisfied with some signs of premature aging of the mariachi doll at the door of his business, he armed himself with small paint cans and brushes and retouched it back to perfection.

Yucatan Peninsula, Mérida City, Mexico, mariachi painting

Store owner renews the painting of the mariachi doll at the entrance.

Generated and rooted in the Midwest of the country, the tradition of the mariachi doll has little or nothing to do with Mérida or the isolated Yucatan Peninsula in general, apart from, in official terms, we are also in Mexico.

Cancun and the Riviera Maya it is a mere four hours by road.

Most of the gringos who land at their airports and on the lounge chairs of countless resorts do not know enough about Mexico to detect the incongruity.

Yucatan Peninsula, Mérida City, Mexico, musicians

Musicians rest in the central square of Mérida before entering service.

Few people leave the plastic bathing refinement of Yucatecan Caribbean hotels and resorts determined to reach as far as Merida.

As a rule, the limit of their exploration of the interior of the Yucatan lies in the famous archaeological complex of Chichén Itzá, former political and economic center of the Mayan civilization, one of the various indigenous ethnic groups that make up the Mexican nation.

Yucatan Peninsula, Mérida City, Mexico, Motherland Monument

Taxi skirts one of the most emblematic monuments in Mérida, the Mexican Patria.

Like Chichén Itzá, the place where Mérida sprawls today was already an important Mayan city centuries before the arrival of the Spanish conqueror Francisco de Montejo y León (El Mozo) and his men.

The Overlap of the Spanish Conquistadors on the Indigenous People

It was in 1542 that they conquered T'Hó, a village full of pyramids from which the settlers removed the stones carefully carved by the natives and built their own buildings with them.

Yucatan Peninsula, Mérida City, Mexico, Motherland Monument

Indigenous Front of the Mexican Motherland Monument.

Some historians consider Mexican Mérida to be the city in the Americas that has been occupied the longest continuously, for many more years than the namesake town in neighboring Venezuela, and there are many more than the Philippines.

Concerned about the frequent revolts of the Mayan Indians, peninsular and mestizo residents kept the walled Mérida of the Yucatan peninsula.

Limestone walls, defenders, and epidemics of smallpox and others brought in from the Old World annihilated the natives' pretensions of reconquest.

Yucatan Peninsula, Mérida City, Mexico, Cabildo and traffic

Trânsito skirts the central square of Mérida as the night strengthens over the Yucatan Peninsula.

Many of the colonial buildings erected until the XNUMXth century remain intact in the historic centre, around the leafy and rectangular park of Plaza Grande.

In rush hour, too infernal for the charm of this cientros deserved it, a traffic full of noisy old Volkswagen Beetles, skirts it.

At the peak of the heat, only a few vehicles travel through it.

Yucatan Peninsula, Mérida City, Mexico, colonial architecture

Limited traffic on one of the streets along the threshold of Plaza de la Independencia.

The Mayan Presence and Life in the Colonial City of Merida

"Lords, by chance hammocks? “asks a Mayan woman, of very short stature – like almost all of them – who wears a white dress with embroidered borders, in the shade of a centuries-old tree and in the company of some mestizo residents.

We scanned its multicolored pile of tangled hammocks. The product does not seduce us. The seller bets on delaying the sale: "Maybe later?"

Yucatan Peninsula, Mérida City, Mexico, Cabildo, Mayan sellers

Mayan vendors loaded with handicrafts they try to sell to tourists they meet in Merida.

Like its Spanish counterparts, Venezuelan and Filipino, this Mérida has a strong Hispanic origins, but after the historic clashes, no other large Mexican city today hosts so many Mayan inhabitants as the capital of the state of Yucatan (about 60% of its population).

It is clear that, as a result of the long supremacy of the colonists, the businesses established in the main buildings of the city are handed over to the criollos (inhabitants already born in Mexico but with Hispanic descent).

Most of the Mayan women are left with a few stalls in the huge local market or patrol the tourist spots of the city with an eye on the authorities who do not always forgive them the fines owed for the illegality of street sales.

The Monumental Town Hall of Mérida and the Unobscured View from its Balconies

These and other laws emanate from the council, installed in another elegant secular building supported by vaulted arcades and from which a supreme clock tower projects.

Yucatan Peninsula, Mérida City, Mexico, arcade

Merida residents walk in the shadow of the many arcades around Plaza de la Independencia.

We step out of the shade of the garden, cross a yellow walkway and climb an interior staircase that reveals several rooms with sumptuous antique decorations.

No one questions our incursion, which is why we only stopped on the parapet of the building's long balcony.

From there, we enjoyed the Plaza de la Independencia (official name of Plaza Grande).

We see it above the roof formed by the crowns of large laurel trees, pierced by the Mexican flag at its centre, by the pediment and towers of the Cathedral and the tops of other buildings almost as lofty.

Yucatan Peninsula, Mérida City, Mexico, Cathedral

The Cathedral of Mérida overlooking the “forest” of laurels in the central square of Mérida.

As we do so, a troupe in artistic robes crosses the same walkway we had crossed and climbs up to the cabildo.

Yucatan Peninsula, Mérida City, Mexico, Walk through History

Passersby pass by under old Mérida windows.

The Meridian Pride of Police Officer J. Mian

Before returning to the earthly reality of the city, police officer J. Mian appears from inside the building with the mission of controlling the legitimacy of the unexpected gathering.

Talk, talk, we ended up including him in our own photo shoot.

The cameras not only don't intimidate or worry him – something rare when it comes to an arm of the law – they also make him visibly proud, posing with his arms behind his back and his features set.

“To see, to see….” he begs us to be able to peek at the small monitor with the avidity of a narcissus in uniform and beside himself. ”Very goodbye, goodbye, i'm the agent Mian. "

Yucatan Peninsula, Mérida City, Mexico, agent Mian

Guard on duty in the historic building of the Merida cabildo.

Merida's Commercial Bustle and a Providential Gastronomic Center

At a certain point, the sun was at its peak, the heat and humidity intensified and aggravated the resident pollution in the streets clogged by sellers of everything.

We went through a succession of shoe stores and clothing stores, legacies far from the economic bonanza of the 80s and 90s, when countless maquiladoras (textile factories) in the area produced and sold, with huge profits, a panoply of garments.

We walk around several stores full of Chinese trinkets and the façade of Lucas de Galvez Municipal Market.

Afterwards, we went up a staircase and, at the back, we came across an intermediate terrace occupied by the unavoidable eaters (small restaurants) that almost always complement the markets. That's what we were looking for.

Yucatan Peninsula, Mérida City, Mexico, staircase

Citizen of Mérida walks down the steps of a colonial building.

In a flash, nine or ten small restaurant owners started a frantic scramble for our attention and Mexican pesos, and forced us to pick the eight or nine we would reject. We didn't have the patience or even the energy to compare menus.

On one of the walls, a panel with a pyramid and other Mayan motifs painted in time-stained kitsch advertised Carmita La Mesticita's business!

That's where we sit, instigated by the softness of the owner's appeal: “Welcome seños. What can they serve?” and savor an invigorating traditional mestizo lunch, while we wait for the heat to kick in.

A taxi driver who makes conversation with us is interested in food and health. He testifies without any fear that traditional Yucatecan meals are halfway to a long life: “as long as you don't eat the crap that the gringos brought here, you have everything to live long and well.

My father is already 90 years old. My mother is 80. And two of my grandparents are alive at over 100.”

You will be quite right.

The Great Cathedral of Mérida and the Mestizo Life of Mérida around

At dusk, we walked towards Praça de Santa Lucia, a stage for musical and dance shows that we didn't want to miss.

On the way, we took a closer look at the Cathedral of Mérida.

Yucatan Peninsula, Mérida City, Mexico, Cathedral

Inhabitants of Mérida in front of the city's imposing cathedral.

To the right of its south door, there is a painting by Tutul Xiú, a Mayan chief allied with Francisco de Montejo. Together, Montejo and Xiú defeated the Cocomes Maya.

Then Xiú converted to Christianity.

His descendants still live in Merida.

On the opposite side of the street, we see another scene worthy of the times of the lords and their vassals, albeit set in our days.

The owner of a small fleet of calluses tourist talks on a cell phone lying on the bench of one of them.

Yucatan Peninsula, Mérida City, Mexico, calesa

Chariot drivers entertain themselves while waiting for passengers.

Five drivers and assistants, all alike under cowboy hats, make him an obvious subordinate company sitting in the rest of the seats and around.

They wait for instructions or for passengers who are late in arriving and smile with delight when we are obsessed with the picturesque scene.

Vaqueria Yucateca

We continue to move away from Plaza Grande towards Santa Lucia, among more and more facades of large stately homes adapted to museums, state or private institutions or elegant businesses.

Yucatan Peninsula, Mérida City, Mexico, colonial building

Bright colonial building against the blue sky of northern Yucatan.

When we arrived, we noticed the laxity of Mexican punctuality.

We see no sign of the show that was supposed to be about to start. A street vendor even installs a snack stand.

Two young brothers hand us handcraft bracelets and spoons. Shortly after, the technicians in charge of tuning the sound and the first fans of the dairy farm Yucateca – that's what the regular exhibition is called – determined to get a front row seat.

After an hour, the audience is composed.

An octogenarian presenter but in great shape appears in typical costume, in a guayabera, white Yucatecan pants and espadrilles.

Inaugurates the show and a series of jokes between each performance that, popularuchas and truly sexist, provoke hysterical laughter among the female audience. "The women are like the yerbabuena. Arriba tienen la yerba and lower la cosa good”…

The Argentine artists with whom we had met in the cabildo and in the streets of the city stand out with great prominence. In between, there is poetry declamation.

Before the closing, there are events that the spectators are more than fed up with watching but that they still prefer.

Yucatan Peninsula, Mérida City, Mexico, Cabildo, Vaqueria yucateca

Dance moment of a traditional show held on weekends in Mérida.

We get to know the fast-paced and diversified regional folklore of the state of Yucatan, which has come to be called dairy farm yucateca.

Fashion that originated in the popular parties that the great cattle raisers of those parts of the Americas organized, especially before the ironworks of the animals.

A task that involved an enormous effort. He deserved a worthy reward.

Campeche, Mexico

200 Years of Playing with Luck

At the end of the XNUMXth century, the peasants surrendered to a game introduced to cool the fever of cash cards. Today, played almost only for Abuelites, lottery little more than a fun place.
Izamal, Mexico

The Holy, Yellow and Beautiful Mexican City

Until the arrival of the Spanish conquerors, Izamal was a center of worship for the supreme Mayan god Itzamná and Kinich Kakmó, the one of the sun. Gradually, the invaders razed the various pyramids of the natives. In its place, they built a large Franciscan convent and a prolific colonial houses, with the same solar tone in which the now Catholic city shines.
Yucatan, Mexico

The Sidereal Murphy's Law That Doomed the Dinosaurs

Scientists studying the crater caused by a meteorite impact 66 million years ago have come to a sweeping conclusion: it happened exactly over a section of the 13% of the Earth's surface susceptible to such devastation. It is a threshold zone on the Mexican Yucatan peninsula that a whim of the evolution of species allowed us to visit.
Mérida, Venezuela

Merida to Los Nevados: in the Andean Ends of Venezuela

In the 40s and 50s, Venezuela attracted 400 Portuguese but only half stayed in Caracas. In Mérida, we find places more similar to the origins and the eccentric ice cream parlor of an immigrant portista.
Mérida, Venezuela

The Vertiginous Renovation of the World's Highest Cable Car

Underway from 2010, the rebuilding of the Mérida cable car was carried out in the Sierra Nevada by intrepid workers who suffered firsthand the magnitude of the work.
Pueblos del Sur, Venezuela

The Pueblos del Sur Locainas, Their Dances and Co.

From the beginning of the XNUMXth century, with Hispanic settlers and, more recently, with Portuguese emigrants, customs and traditions well known in the Iberian Peninsula and, in particular, in northern Portugal, were consolidated in the Pueblos del Sur.
San Cristóbal de las Casas a Campeche, Mexico

A Relay of Faith

The Catholic equivalent of Our Lady of Fátima, Our Lady of Guadalupe moves and moves Mexico. Its faithful cross the country's roads, determined to bring the proof of their faith to the patroness of the Americas.
Campeche, Mexico

Campeche Upon Can Pech

As was the case throughout Mexico, the conquerors arrived, saw and won. Can Pech, the Mayan village, had almost 40 inhabitants, palaces, pyramids and an exuberant urban architecture, but in 1540 there were less than 6 natives. Over the ruins, the Spaniards built Campeche, one of the most imposing colonial cities in the Americas.
Tulum, Mexico

The Most Caribbean of the Mayan Ruins

Built by the sea as an exceptional outpost decisive for the prosperity of the Mayan nation, Tulum was one of its last cities to succumb to Hispanic occupation. At the end of the XNUMXth century, its inhabitants abandoned it to time and to an impeccable coastline of the Yucatan peninsula.
Cobá to Pac Chen, Mexico

From the Ruins to the Mayan Homes

On the Yucatan Peninsula, the history of the second largest indigenous Mexican people is intertwined with their daily lives and merges with modernity. In Cobá, we went from the top of one of its ancient pyramids to the heart of a village of our times.
San Cristobal de Las Casas, Mexico

The Home Sweet Home of Mexican Social Conscience

Mayan, mestizo and Hispanic, Zapatista and tourist, country and cosmopolitan, San Cristobal has no hands to measure. In it, Mexican and expatriate backpacker visitors and political activists share a common ideological demand.

Mexico City, Mexico

mexican soul

With more than 20 million inhabitants in a vast metropolitan area, this megalopolis marks, from its heart of zócalo, the spiritual pulse of a nation that has always been vulnerable and dramatic.

Esteros del Iberá, Pantanal Argentina, Alligator
Iberá Wetlands, Argentina

The Pantanal of the Pampas

On the world map, south of the famous brazilian wetland, a little-known flooded region appears, but almost as vast and rich in biodiversity. the Guarani expression Y bera defines it as “shining waters”. The adjective fits more than its strong luminance.
Faithful light candles, Milarepa Grotto temple, Annapurna Circuit, Nepal
Annapurna (circuit)
Annapurna Circuit: 9th Manang to Milarepa Cave, Nepal,

A Walk between Acclimatization and Pilgrimage

In full Annapurna Circuit, we finally arrived in Manang (3519m). we still need acclimatize to the higher stretches that followed, we inaugurated an equally spiritual journey to a Nepalese cave of Milarepa (4000m), the refuge of a siddha (sage) and Buddhist saint.
Traditional houses, Bergen, Norway.
Architecture & Design
Bergen, Norway

The Great Hanseatic Port of Norway

Already populated in the early 1830th century, Bergen became the capital, monopolized northern Norwegian commerce and, until XNUMX, remained one of the largest cities in Scandinavia. Today, Oslo leads the nation. Bergen continues to stand out for its architectural, urban and historical exuberance.
Full Dog Mushing
Seward, Alaska

The Alaskan Dog Mushing Summer

It's almost 30 degrees and the glaciers are melting. In Alaska, entrepreneurs have little time to get rich. Until the end of August, dog mushing cannot stop.
cowboys oceania, rodeo, el caballo, perth, australia
Ceremonies and Festivities
Perth, Australia

The Oceania Cowboys

Texas is on the other side of the world, but there is no shortage of cowboys in the country of koalas and kangaroos. Outback rodeos recreate the original version and 8 seconds lasts no less in the Australian Western.
Bungee jumping, Queenstown, New Zealand
Queenstown, New Zealand

Queenstown, the Queen of Extreme Sports

In the century. XVIII, the Kiwi government proclaimed a mining village on the South Island "fit for a queen".Today's extreme scenery and activities reinforce the majestic status of ever-challenging Queenstown.
Margilan, Uzbekistan

An Uzbekistan's Breadwinner

In one of the many bakeries in Margilan, worn out by the intense heat of the tandyr oven, the baker Maruf'Jon works half-baked like the distinctive traditional breads sold throughout Uzbekistan
Kiomizudera, Kyoto, a Millennial Japan almost lost
Kyoto, Japan

An Almost Lost Millennial Japan

Kyoto was on the US atomic bomb target list and it was more than a whim of fate that preserved it. Saved by an American Secretary of War in love with its historical and cultural richness and oriental sumptuousness, the city was replaced at the last minute by Nagasaki in the atrocious sacrifice of the second nuclear cataclysm.
Reindeer Racing, Kings Cup, Inari, Finland
Inari, Finland

The Wackiest Race on the Top of the World

Finland's Lapps have been competing in the tow of their reindeer for centuries. In the final of the Kings Cup - Porokuninkuusajot - , they face each other at great speed, well above the Arctic Circle and well below zero.
Inle Lake, Myanmar

A Pleasant Forced Stop

In the second of the holes that we have during a tour around Lake Inlé, we hope that they will bring us the bicycle with the patched tyre. At the roadside shop that welcomes and helps us, everyday life doesn't stop.
Fort São Filipe, Cidade Velha, Santiago Island, Cape Verde
Cidade Velha, Cape Verde

Cidade Velha: the Ancient of the Tropico-Colonial Cities

It was the first settlement founded by Europeans below the Tropic of Cancer. In crucial times for Portuguese expansion to Africa and South America and for the slave trade that accompanied it, Cidade Velha became a poignant but unavoidable legacy of Cape Verdean origins.

Portfolio, Got2Globe, Best Images, Photography, Images, Cleopatra, Dioscorides, Delos, Greece
Got2Globe Photo Portfolio
Got2Globe Portfolio

The Earthly and the Celestial

Ulugh Beg, Astronomer, Samarkand, Uzbekistan, A Space Marriage
Samarkand, Uzbekistan

The Astronomer Sultan

The grandson of one of the great conquerors of Central Asia, Ulugh Beg, preferred the sciences. In 1428, he built a space observatory in Samarkand. His studies of the stars led him to name a crater on the Moon.
Vesikko submarine, Suomenlinna, Helsinki, Finland
Helsinki, Finland

Finland's once Swedish Fortress

Detached in a small archipelago at the entrance to Helsinki, Suomenlinna was built by the Swedish kingdom's political-military designs. For more than a century, the Russia stopped her. Since 1917, the Suomi people have venerated it as the historic bastion of their thorny independence.
Northern Lights, Laponia, Rovaniemi, Finland, Fire Fox
Winter White
Lapland, Finland

In Search of the Fire Fox

Unique to the heights of the Earth are the northern or southern auroras, light phenomena generated by solar explosions. You Sami natives from Lapland they believed it to be a fiery fox that spread sparkles in the sky. Whatever they are, not even the nearly 30 degrees below zero that were felt in the far north of Finland could deter us from admiring them.
Visitors to Ernest Hemingway's Home, Key West, Florida, United States
Key West, United States

Hemingway's Caribbean Playground

Effusive as ever, Ernest Hemingway called Key West "the best place I've ever been...". In the tropical depths of the contiguous US, he found evasion and crazy, drunken fun. And the inspiration to write with intensity to match.
Hell's Bend of Fish River Canyon, Namibia
fish river canyon, Namíbia

The Namibian Guts of Africa

When nothing makes you foreseeable, a vast river ravine burrows the southern end of the Namíbia. At 160km long, 27km wide and, at intervals, 550 meters deep, the Fish River Canyon is the Grand Canyon of Africa. And one of the biggest canyons on the face of the Earth.
Sheki, Autumn in the Caucasus, Azerbaijan, Autumn Homes
Sheki, Azerbaijan

autumn in the caucasus

Lost among the snowy mountains that separate Europe from Asia, Sheki is one of Azerbaijan's most iconic towns. Its largely silky history includes periods of great harshness. When we visited it, autumn pastels added color to a peculiar post-Soviet and Muslim life.
savuti, botswana, elephant-eating lions
Natural Parks
Savuti, Botswana

Savuti's Elephant-Eating Lions

A patch of the Kalahari Desert dries up or is irrigated depending on the region's tectonic whims. In Savuti, lions have become used to depending on themselves and prey on the largest animals in the savannah.
Ptolemaic Egypt, Edfu to Kom Ombo, Nile above, guide explains hieroglyphics
UNESCO World Heritage
Edfu to Kom Ombo, Egypt

Up the River Nile, through the Upper Ptolemaic Egypt

Having accomplished the unmissable embassy to Luxor, to old Thebes and to the Valley of the Kings, we proceed against the current of the Nile. In Edfu and Kom Ombo, we surrender to the historic magnificence bequeathed by successive Ptolemy monarchs.
Heroes Acre Monument, Zimbabwe
Harare, Zimbabwewe

The Last Rales of Surreal Mugabué

In 2015, Zimbabwe's first lady Grace Mugabe said the 91-year-old president would rule until the age of 100 in a special wheelchair. Shortly thereafter, it began to insinuate itself into his succession. But in recent days, the generals have finally precipitated the removal of Robert Mugabe, who has replaced him with former Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
Santa Maria, Sal Island, Cape Verde, Landing
Santa Maria, Sal Island, Cape Verde

Santa Maria and the Atlantic Blessing of Sal

Santa Maria was founded in the first half of the XNUMXth century, as a salt export warehouse. Today, thanks to the providence of Santa Maria, Sal Ilha is worth much more than the raw material.
Detail of the Kamakhya temple in Guwahati, Assam, India.
Guwahati, India

The City that Worships Kamakhya and the Fertility

Guwahati is the largest city in the state of Assam and in North East India. It is also one of the fastest growing in the world. For Hindus and devout believers in Tantra, it will be no coincidence that Kamakhya, the mother goddess of creation, is worshiped there.
The Toy Train story
On Rails
Siliguri a Darjeeling, India

The Himalayan Toy Train Still Running

Neither the steep slope of some stretches nor the modernity stop it. From Siliguri, in the tropical foothills of the great Asian mountain range, the Darjeeling, with its peaks in sight, the most famous of the Indian Toy Trains has ensured for 117 years, day after day, an arduous dream journey. Traveling through the area, we climb aboard and let ourselves be enchanted.
Parade and Pomp
Saint Petersburg, Russia

When the Russian Navy Stations in Saint Petersburg

Russia dedicates the last Sunday of July to its naval forces. On that day, a crowd visits large boats moored on the Neva River as alcohol-drenched sailors seize the city.
Women with long hair from Huang Luo, Guangxi, China
Daily life
Longsheng, China

Huang Luo: the Chinese Village of the Longest Hairs

In a multi-ethnic region covered with terraced rice paddies, the women of Huang Luo have surrendered to the same hairy obsession. They let the longest hair in the world grow, years on end, to an average length of 170 to 200 cm. Oddly enough, to keep them beautiful and shiny, they only use water and rice.
ice tunnel, black gold route, Valdez, Alaska, USA
Valdez, Alaska

On the Black Gold Route

In 1989, the Exxon Valdez oil tanker caused a massive environmental disaster. The vessel stopped plying the seas, but the victim city that gave it its name continues on the path of crude oil from the Arctic Ocean.
The Sounds, Fiordland National Park, New Zealand
Scenic Flights
Fiordland, New Zealand

The Fjords of the Antipodes

A geological quirk made the Fiordland region the rawest and most imposing in New Zealand. Year after year, many thousands of visitors worship the sub-domain slashed between Te Anau and Milford Sound.