Seisho-ji is a temple located in the Toronomon Hills area of central Tokyo. It is part of the Soto sect of Zen Buddhism and moved to its location on Mount Atago in 1600. It sits among a complex of other Buddhist temples and a Shinto Shrine. The various temples are separated by a set of gardens that wrap in and out of a wealthy urban high-rise office setting.
At the Seisho-ji temple itself, resident monks offer zazen orientation for any level of meditator. Timing is flexible while the temple is open (9:00-17:00). It depends on temple’s schedule; please contact staff (contact below).
Tuscany is a region in central Italy. Its capital, Florence, is home to some of the world’s most recognizable Renaissance art and architecture, including Michelangelo’s “David” statue, Botticelli’s works in the Uffizi Gallery and the Duomo basilica. Its diverse natural landscape encompasses the rugged Apennine Mountains, the island of Elba’s beaches on the Tyrrhenian Sea and Chianti’s olive groves and vineyards.
Monteriggioni is a walled town in Tuscany, Italy, known for its medieval fortifications and watchtowers. The castle walls offer views of the surrounding Chianti region. The old town is accessed via the Porta Franca gate. Nearby are the Monteriggioni in Arme Museum, with replicas of ancient weapons, and the 13th-century Church of Santa Maria. To the east, Chianti Sculpture Park displays contemporary artworks.
Montepulciano is a medieval hilltop town in Tuscany, Italy. Surrounded by vineyards, it’s known for its vino nobile red wine. The Torre di Pulcinella is a clock tower topped by a figure of the Pulcinella, a commedia dell’arte character. On the Piazza Grande is the 14th-century Palazzo Comunale, with a tower offering views of the surrounding countryside. Also here is the Duomo, with a huge triptych above its altar.
San Miniato is a town and comune in the province of Pisa, in the region of Tuscany, Italy. San Miniato sits at an historically strategic location atop three small hills where it dominates the lower Arno valley, between the valleys of Egola and Elsa rivers.
From giant icecaps far south to bone-dry deserts further north – I traveled 20.000 km across Chile, Argentina, Bolivia and Peru for six months and was blown away by the variety of landscapes on this continent.
But one thing I found that all these climate zones have in common are those massive mountains rising high above their lands. May it be the majestic granite walls of Patagonia, perfectly shaped volcanos in the Atacama desert or some of the high alpine peaks of the Peruvian highlands.
Even though it only captures very few of them, this short timelapse film is a tribute to all those lone peaks in South America. There is still so many more to discover and photograph.
Peru is a country in South America that’s home to a section of Amazon rainforest and Machu Picchu, an ancient Incan city high in the Andes mountains. The region around Machu Picchu, including the Sacred Valley, Inca Trail and colonial city of Cusco, is rich in archaeological sites. On Peru’s arid Pacific coast is Lima, the capital, with a preserved colonial center and important collections of pre-Columbian art.
The Icebreaker and ships in Artic, cinematic drone footage in 4K by Oculus Films.
The Arctic is a polar region located at the northernmost part of Earth. The Arctic consists of the Arctic Ocean, adjacent seas, and parts of Alaska (United States), Canada, Finland, Greenland (Denmark), Iceland, Norway, Russia, and Sweden. Land within the Arctic region has seasonally varying snow and ice cover, with predominantly treeless permafrost (permanently frozen underground ice) containing tundra. Arctic seas contain seasonal sea ice in many places.
The Arctic region is a unique area among Earth’s ecosystems. The cultures in the region and the Arctic indigenous peoples have adapted to its cold and extreme conditions. Life in the Arctic includes zooplankton and phytoplankton, fish and marine mammals, birds, land animals, plants and human societies. Arctic land is bordered by the subarctic.
The Arctic Ocean is the smallest and shallowest of the world’s five major oceans. It spans an area of approximately 14,060,000 km² and is also known as the coldest of all the oceans. The International Hydrographic Organization (IHO) recognizes it as an ocean, although some oceanographers call it the Arctic Mediterranean Sea. It is sometimes classified as an estuary of the Atlantic Ocean, and it is also seen as the northernmost part of the all-encompassing World Ocean. The Arctic Ocean includes the North Pole region in the middle of the Northern Hemisphere, and extends south to about 60°N.
The Arctic Ocean is surrounded by Eurasia and North America, and the borders follow topographic features; the Bering Strait on the Pacific side, and the Greenland Scotland Ridge on the Atlantic side. It is mostly covered by sea ice throughout the year and almost completely in winter. The Arctic Ocean’s surface temperature and salinity vary seasonally as the ice cover melts and freezes; its salinity is the lowest on average of the five major oceans, due to low evaporation, heavy fresh water inflow from rivers and streams, and limited connection and outflow to surrounding oceanic waters with higher salinities. The summer shrinking of the ice has been quoted at 50%.
The US National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) uses satellite data to provide a daily record of Arctic sea ice cover and the rate of melting compared to an average period and specific past years, showing a continuous decline in sea ice extent. In September 2012, the Arctic ice extent reached a new record minimum. Compared to the average extent (1979-2000), the sea ice had diminished by 49%. An icebreaker is a special-purpose ship or boat designed to move and navigate through ice-covered waters, and provide safe waterways for other boats and ships. Although the term usually refers to ice-breaking ships, it may also refer to smaller vessels, such as the icebreaking boats that were once used on the canals of the United Kingdom.
For a ship to be considered an icebreaker, it requires three traits most normal ships lack: a strengthened hull, an ice-clearing shape, and the power to push through sea ice. Icebreakers clear paths by pushing straight into frozen-over water or pack ice. The bending strength of sea ice is low enough that the ice breaks usually without noticeable change in the vessel’s trim. In cases of very thick ice, an icebreaker can drive its bow onto the ice to break it under the weight of the ship.
A buildup of broken ice in front of a ship can slow it down much more than the breaking of the ice itself, so icebreakers have a specially designed hull to direct the broken ice around or under the vessel. The external components of the ship’s propulsion system (propellers, propeller shafts, etc.) are at greater risk of damage than the vessel’s hull, so the ability of an icebreaker to propel itself onto the ice, break it, and clear the debris from its path successfully is essential for its safety.
Austria, officially the Republic of Austria, is a landlocked East Alpine country in the southern part of Central Europe. It is composed of nine federated states, one of which is Vienna, Austria’s capital and its largest city.
Scoop up the rich tapestry of traditional culture and natural beauty of Ojiya, a small city in Niigata Prefecture’s snowy mountains that’s had to scale back as it steers through a global pandemic.
Koi or more specifically nishikigoi, are colored varieties of the Amur carp that are kept for decorative purposes in outdoor koi ponds or water gardens. Koi is an informal name for the colored variants of C. rubrofuscus kept for ornamental purposes.
Lisbon is Portugal’s hilly, coastal capital city. From imposing São Jorge Castle, the view encompasses the old city’s pastel-colored buildings, Tagus Estuary and Ponte 25 de Abril suspension bridge. Nearby, the National Azulejo Museum displays 5 centuries of decorative ceramic tiles. Just outside Lisbon is a string of Atlantic beaches, from Cascais to Estoril.