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For many, the Big Ben – the clock tower as it is commonly and erroneously known (it is actually the name of the bell inside) – is the most iconic image of London. A symbol of the Houses of Parliament, reminiscent of the debate in the rooms below, where 646 members and more than 700 bishops and Gentlemen loudly carry on the business of government. The nation expects to find midnight on December 31 to celebrate the start of each new year. Protesters against the state occasionally try to climb the 96m (315 feet) – and sometimes succeed.
Another name for the Parliament, the Palace of Westminster, alludes to the complex history of British democracy that has evolved over the centuries by the dominant domain of tribal chiefs, royalty and the Church in a government of elected representatives of the people. Thus, the medieval building that stood on the site until the 19th century, in which they were made the basis of the modern system of Edward I’s Model Parliament of 1295 was also the headquarters of British monarchs until 1530.
Survived the Gunpowder Plot in 1605 by a group of Catholics intent on blowing up the Protestant King James I in the Palace of Westminster was almost completely destroyed by fire in 1834. Westminster Hall, which dates back to 1097, has survived and is the oldest part of the building today.
William IV offered Buckingham Palace as a replacement, but the Parliament wanted to hang at the site of major river that William the Conqueror had made his base of nearly 800 years ago. Public debate on what the style should be used for the new building has been fierce. It should be a fitting emblem of a country with an empire on which “the sun never sets.” A neo-classical design, such as the White House or the U.S. Congress, was excluded because of connotations of revolutionary or a republican. In 1836, after studying 98 proposals, a Royal Commission chose Charles Barry’s plan for a Gothic palace that embody a welcome dose of conservatism.
Democracy in Britain has started to come of age in 1918 when the vote was given to all men 21 and women over 30, if women had to wait 10 years for equal rights. Even now continues to grow: in Tony Blair’s premiership, the power has been devolved to Scotland, Wales and Northem Ireland in 1999, while the shape of the Second Chamber, the House of Lords, is unstable.
UK residents can arrange free guided tours of Parliament for the whole year through their MP or a gentleman, visitors from abroad have to pay and can only tour during the summer when Parliament is in session, but may participate in discussions throughout the year. Both tours last about 75 minutes and includes the Houses of Commons and Lords debating, as well as the Queen’s Robing Room. The official opening of Parliament, where the reigning monarch presents the government’s plans for members of both the House of Lords and Commons, is a colorful ceremony usually takes place in November.
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One of Europe’s most popular tourist destinations, Disneyland Paris is a fantastic place to visit for the whole family. It is a little piece of Disney outside the United States of America, but still manages to bring a fantastic experience for all its millions of visitors each year.
Opens its doors for the first time April 12, 1992, Disneyland Paris is located in Marne-la-Vallée, a city in eastern Paris, the French capital. It was decided to build a Disney resort in Paris after the resounding success of both the Disneyland resort in California and Florida, and the first Disneyland to be built outside of America, the 1983 opening of Tokyo Disneyland. Taking four years to build, work began on Disneyland Paris in 1988. There was a debate in which the site should be, with a preliminary list of 1,200 places as possible. Reduced to only four, the two Spanish sites were rejected because of problems building predictable, leaving Toulon and Marne-la-Vallee, France. After much discussion, it was chosen because it would be less than four hours to almost 70 million people and only 2 hours flying to over 300 million more.
The Disneyland Paris complex consists of three main areas, which can be divided into -
Hotel – built over the entrance to Disneyland Park, the hotel is widely regarded as the most impressive hotel in the area. Disney also provided guests with a selection of hotels or other built around ‘Lake Disney’ theme and their expectations. While there are several Disney-run hotels on the site, there are a selection of other hotels that meet all tastes and, most importantly, budgets. None of the hotels are in fact based on the Disneyland site, but a free shuttle service is provided throughout the day.
Disneyland Park – the actual place where many people consider it a ‘Disneyland’ is Disneyland Park, the site where 140acre sites are hosted almost fifty years. Divided into five ‘lands’ separate, each is themed around a specific idea Disney. Main Street, USA features, as expected, several American-based racing and Frontierland has a lot of cowboy and Indian themed rides, including the famous Big Thunder Mountain. The last three lands, Adventureland, Fantasyland and Discoveryland all with some spectacular rides and attractions, theme and so incredibly to the point that it is difficult to believe you’re not part of a cartoon or a movie!
Extra attractions – While most would be satisfied with the hotels and masses of fantastic rides in Disneyland Park, Disney decided that a selection of other attractions that make the whole bit extra ‘special. From Disneyland Village, which offers a wide selection of restaurants and shops (a Disney theme, of course) there are a variety of other attractions, including two separate golf courses.
There are many Disney theme parks in the world, each designed, themed and professionally created by Disney. Each Disney theme parks around the world will be slightly different, but all guarantee that you will have a great time, whatever your age.
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The Grand Canyon Skywalk, a massive glass walkway which perches almost a mile above the Colorado River, recently opened in Arizona. The unique horseshoe-shaped Glass Bridge is 70 meters from the edge of the Grand Canyon and offers a vertical view down from the edge of the canyon. Located 120 miles east of Las Vegas, Nevada, was built the Grand Canyon Skywalk Glass Bridge from the Hualapai Tribe to provide a one-of-a-kind experience that the Grand Canyon and make money from the tourists who flock to the will of this attraction. The inauguration was March 20, 2007, a week ahead of schedule. Many special guests, including Buzz Aldrin and Hualapai tribal elders took the first steps on the new structure.
And ‘the Skywalk safe?
More than three times higher than the Empire State Building, the glass bridge was built with more than one million pounds of steel and is built to withstand the weight of 71 fully loaded Boeing 747 airplanes (more than 71 million pounds) . The Skywalk was designed to withstand winds of over 100 miles per hour from eight directions.
Earthquake engineers also took into consideration when designing the Grand Canyon Skywalk. The structure was built to last through an earthquake of up to 8.0 on the Richter scale around 50 miles of the Grand Canyon.
Grand Canyon controversy
The opening of the Grand Canyon Skywalk has reignited the controversy surrounding the commercialism of the Grand Canyon, one of the greatest wonders of nature.
The main arguments against the new attractions are:
Some people believe that it is an eye-sore
Environmentalists believe that the Skywalk is turning one of the greatest natural wonders of the world tourist attraction in commercial
Others believe that the Skywalk devalues the cultural and historical values of the Grand Canyon and the Hualapai Tribe
Critics question how the tribe will support these locations and attractions with limited existing infrastructure (there is currently no sustainable water, sewage, garbage, telephone or electrical service in the area)
Supporters of the Grand Canyon Skywalk to say that the new attraction is simply a new way for tourists to experience the Grand Canyon like never before and efficient way for the tribe Huapalai to earn more on earth. They believe that the new Grand Canyon West development will be good for the local economy.
Grand Canyon West
The glass bridge is just a piece of a 6,000 square meters development called Grand Canyon West, which includes a visitors ‘center’, gift shop and a restaurant. It will cost you $ 25 to see the Grand Canyon from this unusual perspective.
The Tribe Huapalai is an administrator of the lands of the Grand Canyon. They intend to build hotels, shopping extra, and a golf course near the Bridge of Glass in the future. Part of their plan includes the addition of lifts to transport tourists from the edge of the canyon on the Colorado River (inside the Grand Canyon). pontoon boat rides, raft trips, and low-flying aircraft and helicopter rides also in their plans.
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Bryce Canyon National Park is considered by many visitors to be one of the most beautiful natural treasures of America. Located on the eastern side of Utah’s Paunsaugunt Plateau and its spectacular natural amphitheatres and amazing rock formations are the result of millions of years of natural erosion by wind, water and ice. Bryce Canyon Tours from Las Vegas is an attractive alternative for tourists who want to do more than watch nightly shows and a casino visit.
It is one of the smallest of the five Utah national parks, covering an area of only 36,000 hectares. Overshadowed by the biggest and most famous Grand Canyon and Zion National Park, Bryce is an underrated gem of a park. It’s small, fantastic views, and the accessibility of its tracks is made of one of the easiest parks to move
The main attraction of the park is Bryce Canyon, a huge natural amphitheater. Rising from his plan are a number of spectacular limestone rock formations standing known as ‘hoodoos’. The Paiute Indians who inhabited the area for centuries before the arrival of European settlers believed that hoodoos were the remains of the ancient legend that had been turned to stone because of their evil deeds. If the legend is true or not, you can get a closer look by hiking along one of the four major trails that run along the amphitheater.
The Rim Trail runs for about five and a half miles along the cliffs above the famous Bryce Amphitheater, which links the five main points of view overlooking the canyon. E ‘flat enough to be suitable for wheelchairs between sunset and sunrise points.
The Queen’s Garden Trail starts and stops at Fairyland Point from where it runs under the edge of Bryce for just over a mile and a half in one direction. It ‘s the easiest of paths. You can see the Castle of Queens and Queen Victoria by rock formations along its path.
The Navajo Loop Trail starts and stops at Sunset Point, Bryce running under the border for a distance of less than a mile and a half. Along the route, which passes through a narrow opening between sheer cliff known as “Wall Street”. The Silent City, the Temple of Osiris and Thors’ Hammer rock formations are visible from this location.
The Fairyland Loop Trail is considered the most strenuous, because of its length and eight miles of steep periodicals. The route goes from the point of Fairyland, down through Fairyland Canyon, then works its way along the wall starts to climb in China, until it finally runs the Rim Trail and back to Fairyland Point. On the part that runs along Fairyland Canyon, about halfway point of the journey, is the Tower Bridge Junction. A short path leads from it to the Tower Bridge rock formation, which is remarkable for its resemblance to a castle full.
Because the point Fairyland is a bit ‘off the beaten path, it receives fewer visitors. However, it offers some of the most spectacular views of the park. If you can, make a point of visiting it. You can see the highest Hoodoo Canyon, Mesa in the boat, it, like the sinking of the rock formation.
Bryce Canyon National Park has many other stellar attractions. The North and South Park areas are also rich in hoodoos and breathtaking views. After his return, you may find yourself wanting to do more Bryce Canyon Tours from Las Vegas.
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A trip to Australia is not complete without a visit to our world famous landmarks, places that put Australia on the map. In every State and Territory a visitor can find great tourist destinations and accommodation to suit every budget. From natural wonders to man made structures, there is plenty to see and do.
The Sydney Opera House
One of Australia’s most recognisable landmarks, the beautiful white sails of the Sydney Opera House stand overlooking the harbour. Opened in 1973 it houses over three thousand performances a year. Take a guided tour and admire the unique architecture, or better still, book a seat for a performance of either the opera, the ballet, the symphony orchestra or a play.
The Sydney Harbour Bridge
Another landmark that foreigners instantly recognise as Australia’s, the Sydney Harbour Bridge is also known as The Coat Hanger. Opened in 1932 it stands one hundred and thirty-four metres above the harbour at its highest point. Connecting the North and South shore of Sydney for both car, bike, rail and foot travel, you now can scale the bridge’s steel structure. The Sydney Harbour Bridge climb has been available to the public since 1998. There are different climbs available and is one of Australia’s top tourist attractions.
Formerly known as Ayers Rock, Uluru is the world’s largest single piece of rock. Similar to an iceberg a lot of its mass is hidden beneath the ground, but it stands three hundred and forty-eight metres high. Guided walking tours are available around its perimeter. Once you could scale the rock but it is now forbidden due to conservation. Uluru offers fantastic photo opportunities as the rock appears to change colour from sunrise to sunset, and when it rains.