China says US, Canada staged political farce on Huawei executive’s detention

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE SHANGHAI CHINA NEWS AGENCY “SHINE’)

 

China says US, Canada staged political farce on Huawei executive’s detention

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China says US, Canada staged political farce on Huawei executive's detention

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Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou leaves her home to attend a court appearance in Vancouver, British Columbia, Wednesday, March 6, 2019.

The United States and Canada have echoed each other, distorted facts and staged a political farce on the matter of a Huawei senior executive’s detention, a Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson said Friday.

The remarks came after US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland commented on the arrest of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou by Canada and the detention of two Canadians by China.

When meeting with the press on Thursday in Ottawa, Canada, Pompeo said that the “arbitrary detention” of two Canadian citizens in China was a “fundamentally different matter than the Canadian decision to apply the rule of law that’s consistent with the way decent nations work.”

The extradition of Meng is not a political matter, Freeland said.

Spokesperson Geng Shuang tore apart these remarks at a routine press briefing, saying the US side trumped up Meng’s case and resorted to state power to crack down on Chinese high-tech enterprises, while the Canadian side played an inglorious part in the process.

Meng’s case is a serious political incident, while the two Canadians, Michael John Kovrig and Spavor Michael Peter Todd, were arrested on suspicion of crimes against state security, Geng said.

What the United States and Canada have done to Meng is true “arbitrary detention,” he added, saying that out of pure political motivation, the two countries have abused the bilateral extradition treaty and severely violated a Chinese citizen’s legitimate rights and interests.

Geng called on other countries to be vigilant to avoid falling into the “American trap.”

He also urged Canada and the United States to earnestly deal with China’s serious concern, correct its mistakes, release Meng immediately and let her return home safe and sound.

When meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Freeland on the same day, Pompeo said it is wrong that the two Canadians were being held and the US side is focused on helping them be released.

Geng refuted Pompeo’s remarks by stressing that China is a country under the rule of law, and that China’s judicial organs handle cases independently and protect the legitimate rights of Canadian citizens in accordance with the law.

“The cases of Canadian citizens have nothing to do with the United States. The US side is not entitled to make irresponsible remarks,” Geng said.

10 Most Educated Countries

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF TRAVEL TRIVIA)

 

10 Most Educated Countries

For most countries, the average education level of the population can be an indicator of its financial stability and literacy rates. It can even contribute to how healthy the country is overall. With all of this in mind, do you know which countries rank as the most educated in the world? While you might be able to guess a few, there may be some countries on the list that surprise you. Here are the top 10 most educated countries, according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.

Luxembourg

Luxembourg

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Luxembourg comes in as the smallest country to make the list. The country has only around 615,70 residents. Luxembourg is a landlocked country, surrounded by Germany, France, and Belgium. According to the OECD, 87% of adults between the ages of 25 and 34 have completed at least a secondary education (compared to the OECD average of 84%). Also, 54% of residents in this age group have completed at least some level of higher education. Maybe this has something to do with why Luxembourg comes in as the wealthiest country in the world.

Norway

Norway

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It probably comes as no surprise that Norway ranks among the most educated countries. The European nation consistently ranks high for various quality of life factors, including healthcare, environmental awareness, and overall happiness. Colleges in Norway are tuition-free, which gives citizens greater access to higher education. The rate of adults with higher education has been increasing in Norway, and the country saw a 5% jump from 2007 to 2017. In 2017, 48% of adults aged 25 to 34 had some level of tertiary education.

Finland

Finland

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Another country with free education, this Scandinavian nation ranks among the most educated in the world. It’s not just Finnish residents that can take advantage of the free education. Non-native residents can get free schooling, as well. The Finnish education system is a stark contrast to that in the United States. Some key differences are that Finnish children receive 75 minutes of recess every day (as opposed to 27 minutes in the U.S.), there is no mandated testing until the age of 16, and most teachers stick with the same group of students for at least five years. It’s no wonder Finland has been ranked as the happiest country in the world for two years running.

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Australia

Australia

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The land down under just barely misses the top five when it comes to the percentage of adults who have a higher education. An impressive 52% of adults between the ages of 25 and 34 have completed higher education courses. The country also ranks among the highest level of citizens who have a bachelor’s degree or higher. This is despite how Australia has some of the highest tuition rates in the world.

United States of America

United States of America

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Public opinion on the state of the education system in the United States varies, depending on who you ask. The country is known to have an unbelievable amount of student debt, and tuition continues to be on the rise. On the other hand, the United States has some of the best universities in the world and is one of the world’s strongest powers. So it’s probably not surprising that the U.S. comes in smack dab in the middle of the top 10 most educated countries. The U.S. Census estimates that 59% of adults have completed some college.

United Kingdom

United Kingdom

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One thing that sets the United Kingdom apart from other countries is its focus on early education. The country sees high enrollment levels for young children. Education is a top priority for citizens as reports have shown a direct correlation between education level and pay. In fact, one study found that residents with upper education earned on average 48% more than their peers without upper education. The United Kingdom is home to two of the oldest universities in the world, the University of Oxford and the University of Cambridge.

South Korea

South Korea

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South Korea places high demands on its students. Consequently, the country has a high number of adults with upper education. When it comes to students graduating from secondary school, Korea ranks number one. 98% of citizens graduate from secondary education. South Korea also ranks number one for attaining tertiary education, with nearly 70% of its residents completing some higher education.

Israel

Israel

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The education system in Israel is different from those in most of the world, but it still ranks as one of the best. In Israel, most schools are divided by the student’s faith. It is also not uncommon for schools to include weapon training. Because of its strong focus on education, the country has more university degrees per capita than any other country in the world. According to the OECD, nearly 25% of all residents have a bachelor’s degree or higher.

Japan

Japan

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It may be hard to believe, but Japan does not come in at the top spot when it comes to education. Though the country is world-renowned for its education levels, it falls just short of number one. The amount of tertiary schooling comes in at a staggering 60% for adults between the age of 25 and 34. While the country has one of the highest percentages of adults expected to complete a bachelor’s degree, it has one of the lowest levels for doctorate degrees. Just 1% of its citizens are expected to attain a doctorate.

Canada

Canada

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Canada just barely edges out Japan when it comes to adults who will complete some amount of college. A whopping 60.9% of Canadians between the age of 25 and 34 have completed some level of college, whereas that number is 60.4% in Japan. There seems to be some level of correlation between education level and happiness because Norway, Finland, and Canada all ranked among the happiest countries in the world.

6 Longest Highways on the Planet

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF TRIP TRIVIA)

 

6 Longest Highways on the Planet

If you’re used to traveling by car, you’re probably quite familiar with the highways in your local area. These lengthy stretches of empty roadway can seem nearly endless on long trips and are notorious for prompting complaints from the backseat. And while no roadway lasts forever, these six highways come the closest. Buckle up and prepare for an epic road trip.

6. National Highway 010 – China

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First on our list is National Highway 010, the longest highway in China. Also known as the Tongsan Expressway, this highway is over 3,500 miles long and runs through nine of China’s major provinces. A curious feature of this highway is that it’s interrupted by the Qiongzhou Strait, where cars must be ferried across the water to reach the province of Hainan. However, after decades of research, China is finally exploring new ways to subvert this problem and connect Hainan with a dedicated road-rail tunnel.

5. Golden Quadrilateral Highway Network – India

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Completed in 2012, India’s Golden Quadrilateral Highway Network is the newest roadway on this list yet already stands as the fifth-longest highway in the world. Spanning over 3,600 miles, the Golden Quadrilateral Network gets its name from the shape the roads make from connecting four of India’s major metropolitan areas: Delhi in the north, Chennai in the south, Kolkata in the east, and Mumbai in the west. It was an ambitious project that ended up creating a network of highways throughout all 13 of India’s states, and it stands to this day as the country’s primary transit route for commerce, industry, and agriculture.

4. Trans-Canada Highway – Canada

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Ranking as the fourth-longest highway in the world and the second-longest national roadway is the Trans-Canada Highway. This long, interconnected system of roadways extends 4,860 miles, running through all 10 of Canada’s provinces and joining most of the country’s major cities. The Trans-Canada Highway took 21 years to build and required over $1 billion to finish, and the final results are pretty impressive: At the time of its completion, it was the world’s longest uninterrupted highway.

Of course, it wouldn’t hold this title for long, but it does still have a few cool features that others on this list don’t. For example, electric vehicle charging stations were installed along many segments of the highway in 2012, helping owners of electric cars make their trips across the country without relying on gasoline.

3. Trans-Siberian Highway – Russia

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With a total length of over 6,800 miles, the Trans-Siberian Highway is the longest highway in Russia and the Asian continent as a whole. Comprised of seven federal highways that were built separately and combined, the Trans-Siberian Highway runs an impressive distance from St. Petersburg in Western Russia all the way to the eastern city of Vladivostok.

Unlike some other highways on this list, the Trans-Siberian Highway is a dangerous route to travel. Many of the sections are poorly-maintained and extend far into the cold Russian tundra, with few gas stations or rest areas in sight. It’s recommended that drivers make the trip only between June and September when the weather is warm and the conditions are easier—if they must make the trip at all.

2. Highway 1 – Australia

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Runner-up on our list is Highway 1 in Australia. While it’s not the longest highway in the world compared to our first place winner, Highway 1 does bear the distinction of being the longest national highway owned by any single country, so it has that going for it.

Highway 1 is just over 9,000 miles long; a series of interconnected roads that connects to all of Australia’s major state capitals by way of a giant loop that circles the entire Australian continent. Known locally as the “Big Lap,” this long highway certainly isn’t the most direct way to travel around Australia — but it’s a popular route for motorists interested in taking a scenic tour of the country.

1. Pan-American Highway – North/South America

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The longest highway in the world is undoubtedly the Pan-American Highway. This sprawling maze of interconnected roadways spans over 29,000 miles, beginning up north in Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, and running all the way to Ushuaia, Argentina.

Yep, that’s right—this particular highway runs nearly the entire length of North and South America combined. Motorists who travel the whole length of the highway will pass through 14 countries, two continents, and a diverse array of climates that include forests, prairies, jungles, deserts, and arctic tundra, to name a few. It’s a trip that few can claim to have made, but in terms of sheer length, this highway is second to none.

The World’s Longest Roadways

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Many of these highways are destinations for world travellers who love the road and want a challenge — but be careful on these long trips! Just because these regions are designated as “highways” doesn’t mean that they’re well-kept or safe in all areas. Make sure you do your research and prepare well in advance before tackling any of these.

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Canadian Teenage Murder Suspects Found Dead, Police Say

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE NEW YORK TIMES)

 

Canadian Teenage Murder Suspects Found Dead, Police Say

ImageRoyal Canadian Mounted Police searching for the suspects last month near Gillam in Manitoba, Canada.
Credit Manitoba Royal Canadian Mounted Police

The Canadian police said on Wednesday that they believed they had found the bodies of two teenagers suspected of killing three people in British Columbia.

Kam McLeod, 19, and Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, had been the subject of an intense two-week manhunt that riveted the country. An autopsy was underway to confirm their identities, Assistant Commissioner Jane MacLatchy, the commanding officer of the Manitoba Royal Canadian Mounted Police, said at a news conference.

But she said the police were confident the bodies belonged to the teenagers.

The bodies were found in northern Manitoba, the police said. Assistant Commissioner MacLatchy said the investigation had a breakthrough on Friday after police officers discovered personal items belonging to the suspects on the shorelines of the Nelson River. The police also found a damaged aluminum boat.

The discovery of the personal items led the police into a dense area of brush, about a kilometer away, where they found the bodies, the assistant commissioner said.

ImageThe suspects — Kam McLeod, 19, and Bryer Schmegelsky, 18 — in surveillance footage released by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
Credit Royal Canadian Mounted Police

The teenagers were suspects in the deaths of Leonard Dyck, a 64-year-old University of British Columbia lecturer, and a young couple: Lucas Fowler, 23, an Australian, and Chynna Deese, 24, an American.

This story is developing and will be updated soon.

9 Things You Never Knew About Canada

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9 Things You Never Knew About Canada

With Canada Day just around the corner, what better way to celebrate the country than with some weird and wonderful facts? You may already know that the country stretches across six different time zones and has the longest coastline in the world. However, there are many other wonderful oddities that may surprise you. Read on for nine facts you never knew about the Great White North.

Canadians Love to Say ‘Sorry’

Canadians Love to Say 'Sorry'

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Canadians are so polite that they’ll say sorry even if they aren’t in the wrong. In fact, the desire to apologize is so strong that the country passed The Apology Act in 2009. The act means that if the word “sorry” is used in court, it can only be taken as an expression of sympathy or regret, not an admission of guilt.

There’s a Town Called Saint-Louis-du-Ha! Ha!

There’s a Town Called Saint-Louis-du-Ha! Ha!

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As well as being apologetic, Canadians are pretty funny. This town, in Quebec, is up there with some of the most amusing names we’ve heard. There is a little more to it than just wanting to sound amusing, though. The expression ha-ha was used in the country to explain an unexpected obstacle, in this case, nearby Lake Témiscouata. What’s more, the town is the only place name in the world with two exclamation marks. It’s so surprising, they exclaimed it twice.

Road Safety Is for Animals Too

Road Safety Is for Animals Too

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The Trans-Canada Highway boasts wildlife crossings in Banff National Park. Roaring traffic on the road doesn’t hinder big mammals crossing the road, which is highly dangerous to the mammals and drivers alike. The underpasses and overpasses in the park are used by grizzly bears, moose, lynxes and more so they can get safely to the other side.

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Canada Is Ready for Alien Invasions

Canada Is Ready for Alien Invasions

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Again, highlighting how friendly the Canadians are, in 1967, they built the world’s first UFO Landing Pad. The Centennial project was funded by the town with local businesses providing the building supplies and labor. The aim was to attract foreigners, both from this world and beyond, welcoming all visitors to the Town of St. Paul, Alberta.

There’s a Secret Underground Laboratory

There’s a Secret Underground Laboratory

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Underneath the nickel mines of Sudbury, Ontario, lies a secret underground physics laboratory. SNOLAB lies at a depth of 2 km below the surface, creating a good environment for sensitive experiments. As the deepest clean laboratory in the world, the site is used for the study of dark matter physics.

The Largest Concentration of Snakes in the World

The Largest Concentration of Snakes in the World

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If you’re afraid of snakes, then Manitoba may well not be the place for you, especially in May. The snake population in the early 2000s was dangerously low, so the Narcisse Snake Pits Wildlife Management Area was born. Today, the area has the largest population of snakes in the world, around 70,000, in fact. The most prolific are the red-sided garter snakes.

There Is a Polar Bear Prison

There Is a Polar Bear Prison

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There are plenty of polar bears in Canada. In fact, 60% of the world’s population of polar bears spend most of their time there. The town of Churchill in Manitoba is famous as a key stop-off point on their winter migration up Hudson Bay. However, there are so many bears that at times they outnumber the town’s population. With so many bears and so few people, it’s vital to keep them in check. The polar bear prison, located in a former aircraft storage hangar, is reserved for animals who don’t take the hint not to keep coming back to the town. They’re released on good behavior, of course.

Canadians Eat a Lot of Donuts

Canadians Eat a Lot of Donuts

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It may seem like a stereotype, but Canadians really do like donuts, and there’s nothing wrong with that. They love them so much, in fact, that there are more donut shops per capita than in any other country. The famous Tim Hortons brand has become synonymous with the country, building a coffee and donut community culture that keeps residents coming back for more.

Canada Has National Parks Bigger Than Entire Countries

Canada Has National Parks Bigger Than Entire Countries

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Canada is a huge country with a huge amount of national parks and, you guessed it, they’re huge. In fact, many of Canada’s national parks are bigger than entire countries. The largest of the parks, Wood Buffalo National Park in Alberta, is bigger than countries like Denmark and Switzerland. The park was created in 1922 to protect its enormous wood bison herd. Home to an intriguing array of wildlife, the park is also the last known nesting site of the endangered whooping crane.

5 Old Olympics Facilities You Can Still Visit

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5 Old Olympics Facilities You Can Still Visit

The Olympic Games are the leading international sporting events that still bring the world together. Thousands of athletic competitors from more than 200 nations participate and compete for gold, silver, and bronze medals. Media coverage is intense, sports records are broken, and stories of hope, despair, and triumph generate both empathy and world acclaim.

Since the ancient Olympics games held in Olympia, Greece, the winter and summer Olympics evolved into the modern versions we know today, which have taken place at elaborate facilities across the globe. Here are a few you can still visit to relive the glory.

Olympia, Greece: Ancient Olympic Games

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The roots of the Olympic Games are religious and athletic festivals held in honor of Zeus in Olympia on the Peloponnese Peninsula. During classical times, athletics and combat sports such as wrestling, javelin, and horse and chariot racing events were common.

Starting in 776 BC, they continued every four years through Greek and Roman rule until AD 393 when Theodosius suspended them to enforce Christianity. You can immerse yourself in ancient history by exploring the remnants of the once-grand Stadium at Olympia.

Olympia is located a 3.5-hour drive from Athens. Now transformed into a tourist destination, there is plenty to see and do. The archaeological site itself is surrounded by the Museum of the History of the Olympic Games in Antiquity, the Museum of the History of Excavations in Olympia, and the Archaeological Museum of Olympia.

The ancient site lies a brief five-minute walk from the main entrance. The sanctuary includes the gymnasium, the Temple of Hera, the Philippeion, and other fragments of buildings, statues, and monuments.

Berlin, Germany: Olympic Village (1936)

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This is where the Jews were barred from participating in 1936 during the Nazi rule. Berlin was awarded the Olympic contract two years before being taken over by the Nazis. They were the first Olympic games to be broadcast worldwide, and the competitions were not just for athletes but political messages, as well.

The Olympic village was built approximately 20 miles from the western edge of Berlin. The venue includes training facilities, a swimming pool, and low-level dormitories. The 1936 Olympics saw African-American Jesse Owens make history, earning four gold medals in the track and field events and setting three world records in the process. After the Olympics, the facility underwent renovations and became a hospital, then a Soviet military camp. Tours are available; however, be aware that the center is in decay.

Beijing, China: Birds Nest Stadium (2008)

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Designed for the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics, the National Stadium—perhaps better known as the Bird’s Nest—was the largest facility created for the games. The one-of-a-kind architecture interprets nature in its rendering of a bird’s nest.

The specifications were daunting: The structure needed to be earthquake-proof, with 111,000 tons of steel and struts, yet visually lightweight, airy, and inspiring. As one of Beijing’s top landmarks, it has hosted many competitions and events. Weight throw, discus, track and field, football, and other sporting events were held at the Bird’s Nest.

For the full visual impact, plan your trip at night to see the artistic illumination. Currently, it is used as a soccer stadium but is open for visitors and will host the 2022 Winter Olympics.

Athens, Greece: Panathenaic Stadium (2004)

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Located on an ancient stadium site from the fourth century, the Panathenaic Stadium is a famous cultural and historic landmark in Athens, Greece. It is built entirely of marble and shaped as a parallelogram. It hosted the first modern games in 1896, and more recently, the 2004 games in Athens. This is where the iconic Olympic flame begins its trek to the new host city for every winter, summer, and youth games.

The Hellenic Olympic Committee owns, operates and manages the Panathenaic Stadium. Its mission is to advance, sponsor, and guard the Olympic Movement day and night, and to encourage the sporting spirit among the next generations. The modern-day stadium accommodates multi-purpose events for conferences, seminars, and athletics. You can take in classical history on a breathtaking tour with a certified guide, audio guide, or interactive nature journey.

Vancouver, Canada: Olympic Village Condos (2010)

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In 2010, Vancouver hosted the Winter Olympics and Paralympics. The Millennium Development Group built one thousand units to accommodate close to 3,000 athletes and visitors. It is touted as the greenest, most environmentally-friendly complex in the world. The structures use natural solar heating, green roof practices, and other sustainable advances.

Do not expect to see artifacts of the 2010 Olympic Games as the property was re-purposed into a mixed-use community and open-space development. This compound is located on the southeast corner of False Creek, which has hiking, biking, shopping, and dog walking paths in a park near the Olympic Village. Vancouver’s famous (and protected) beaver community has taken up residence in the area.

5 Largest Libraries in the World

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Largest Libraries in the World

Collectively, the five largest libraries in the world hold a staggering 467.4 million items, according to World Atlas. That’s millions of books, magazines, journals, music records, maps and other artifacts, all available for the public’s consumption. From rare manuscripts to pancake recipes, these distinguished institutions hold treasures of every kind. Ranked in order of items cataloged, here are the five largest libraries in the world.

Russian State Library

Russian State Library

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44.4 Million Items

Founded in 1862, the Russian State Library has been through many iterations in the past 157 years. Originally founded as the Rumyantsev Museum, it began as a collection of rare books and manuscripts belonging to Count Nikolay Rumyantsev. After it was relocated from St. Petersburg to Moscow, the Rumyantsev Museum was housed in the Pashkov House, just outside of the Kremlin walls. Today, this building is home to the library’s impressive music section. It wasn’t until after 1917 that the museum transformed into a national archive and a new building was built to contain the country’s growing collection of books, journals and maps. In 1924, the library was renamed V.I. Lenin State Library of the U.S.S.R. and it is still called “Leninka” by locals today. In 1992, the library changed its name once more to the Russian State Library.

Library and Archives, Canada

Library and Archives, Canada

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54 Million Items

Located in the Canadian capital of Ottawa, the country’s Library and Archives is a federal institution dedicated to preserving Canada’s heritage. The library’s archives are available to the public and are extremely thorough in their provision of national records. The library has a collection on Canadian census records from 1640 to 1926, immigration records from 1865 to 1935 and an entire section dedicated to genealogy and family history. The museum also works to preserve Indigenous cultures, with materials that represent First Nations, Inuit and Metis Nation experiences. Formed as recently as 2004, the library was created when the National Archives of Canada joined with the National Library of Canada.

New York Public Library

New York Public Library

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55 Million Items

The New York Public Library consists of 92 libraries located throughout the Bronx, Manhattan and Staten Island. With four major research libraries and 88 branch libraries, the main branch is located on Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street in Manhattan. Situated in Bryant Park, the building is a notable example of  Beaux-Arts architecture and was named a National Historic Landmark in 1965. Its impressive collection of items includes maps, music, books and periodicals. During World War II, the Allies used the museum’s map collection to study the coastlines of opposing countries. An incredible resource for New Yorkers, the public library went as far as providing free movie streaming to its members. Unfortunately, it was recently announced that this service will soon be canceled, as it is no longer part of the library’s budget.

British Library

British Library

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150 Million Items

The national library of the United Kingdom, the British Library is an impressive modern building located in the heart of London. The library’s massive collection includes books, patents, stamps, newspapers, sound recordings, maps and musical scores. The main branch library has a basement that extends 80 feet into the ground, where the temperature-controlled environment is ideal for preserving historical books, manuscripts and maps. Not only is this library home to books that belonged to King George III, but it also has a first edition copy of “The Canterbury Tales” by Geoffrey Chaucer. Among its numerous original manuscripts are Jane Austen’s “Persuasion” and an illustrated version of Lewis Carroll’s “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.”

Library of the U.S. Congress

Library of the U.S. Congress

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164 Million Items

The Library of the U.S. Congress is the largest library in the world. In 1800, when President John Adams approved a bill that moved the nation’s capital from Philadelphia to Washington, D.C., he also consented to the creation of this library. The bill stipulated that $5,000 be set aside for books to be referenced by Congress, and thus, the Library of the U.S. Congress was born. As such, it is the nation’s oldest federal cultural institution and holds impressive items related to U.S. history, including a rough draft of the Declaration of Independence. Other unusual items include the contents of Abraham Lincoln’s pockets the night he was assassinated and a recipe for Rosa Parks’s pancakes. The library is open to the public for tours, which includes a guided tour of the Thomas Jefferson Building and the library’s exhibitions.

7 Unique Bridges You Can Drive Across

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF TRIP TRIVIA)

 

7 Unique Bridges You Can Drive Across

Most people don’t think much of crossing a bridge like the Golden Gate in San Francisco or even the Verrazano Narrows in New York. But there are some bridges that can make your heart fall to your stomach. For those with a fear of heights, water, or just freakishly rickety structures, please proceed with caution. For everyone else, this article is for you.

Lake Pontchartrain Causeway – USA

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If you’re not from Louisiana, you probably first heard about the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway during Hurricane Katrina when it suffered serious damage but was later repaired. The bridge is listed as a National Historic Civil Engineering Landmark by the American Historical Society. Until 2016, the causeway was considered the longest bridge in the world until it was unseated by the Danyang-Kunshan Grand Bridge in China. After some contention between parties in the U.S. and China, the Guinness Book of World Records created a new category to clarify any confusion. Today, the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway is the longest continuous bridge over water in the world, spanning 24 miles.

Vasco da Gama Bridge – Portugal

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The Vasco de Gama Bridge in Lisbon is the longest bridge in Europe. It measures over 10 miles, connecting northern and southern Portugal over the Tagus River. It is named after one of the most famous Renaissance-era explorers, Vasco da Gama, who was the first European to reach India by sea.

Royal Gorge Bridge – USA

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If you don’t have a fear of heights or are ready to face that fear, the Royal Gorge Bridge should be on your travel list. This is the tallest suspension bridge in the U.S. at a dizzying 955 feet. However, once upon a time, this, too, was the tallest bridge in the world until Liuguanghe Bridge in China surpassed it in 2001. The bridge connects both sides of the Royal Gorge and sits above the Arkansas River in Colorado, just two hours outside of Denver. Interestingly, this bridge is a shared highway where both cars and people cross on the same roadway. So, be sure to be mindful of the cars behind you while traversing it.

Beipanjiang Bridge – China

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It’s no secret that China has been beefing up its infrastructure in recent years. This means massive construction projects and numerous new bridges around the country that currently hold  world records. One of these bridges is the Beipanjiang Bridge, which has the title of the highest bridge and the second-longest spanning bridge in the world. At 565.4 meters in height, the equivalent of a 200-story skyscraper building, the bridge connects the Guizhou and Yunnan provinces in southeastern China and crosses over the Beipanjiang Valley.

Eshima Ohashi Bridge – Japan

Credit: mstk east / CC 2.0

The Eshima Ohashi Bridge in Japan is considered one of the scariest bridges to cross and is referred to as the Rollercoaster Bridge. This bridge has some of the steepest grades in the world, reaching an unreal 6.1 percent on one side and 5.9 on the other. But there’s a real purpose for these intense inclines. The bridge is only 1 mile long and must reach a height of 44 meters so that ships can safely pass beneath it on Lake Nakaumi.

Confederation Bridge – Canada

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A sturdily built bridge can still create white-knuckle experiences. The Confederate Bridge connects Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick over the Northumberland Strait. So, why is this considered one of the scariest bridges? It has the honor—or dubious distinction—of being the longest bridge spanning ice water in the world, sitting 60 meters above seawater at its highest point. For five months during the winter, the waters beneath the bridge are packed with ice. It’s so serious that the actual piers are built with breakers to prevent any serious damage from ice crashing into them. As if that’s not enough, because the bridge is primarily over open water, wind gusts can be dangerously high. The official Confederate Bridge website actually monitors and provides real-time wind conditions 24 hours a day.

Kuandinsky Bridge – Russia

A bridge doesn’t have to earn a Guinness record to make it onto this list, and the Kuandinsky Bridge is the perfect example. Officially, this bridge is not in service, but that doesn’t stop people from crossing it. Located in Siberia, the Kuandinsky Bridge originally served as a railway passage spanning the Vitim River in the Zabaikalsky region. These days, locals and daredevil tourists take their chances by driving across this ice-covered wooden bridge without guardrails. Even though the bridge is roughly half a kilometer long, it’s only about the width of a car, which adds to the terrifying aspect of this trip. Plus, the Kuandinsky Bridge is known to be so windy that drivers cross it with their windows open to minimize impact.

So, now you know about a few bridges that many seasoned travelers find intimidating. Which one do you think was the scariest bridge? Which will you be adding to your travel plans?

Landscapes Around the World You Won’t Believe Exist

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF TRIP TRIVIA)

 

Landscapes Around the World You Won’t Believe Exist

Earth is home to some spectacular natural vistas – dense forest, raging rivers and rugged mountains are sights we are all familiar with. But there are a few places that you may be surprised that you can even visit on this planet. Here are some landscapes from around the world that you won’t believe exist.

DAILY QUESTION

Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia

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This expansive salt flat covers over 4,000 square miles high in the Bolivian Andes. Formed by the slow growth, reduction, and disappearance of many different lakes over the last 50,000 years, Salar de Uyuni is like no place on Earth. While the unending plain of snow-white salt is something to see on its own, the real show begins after a rain has passed over and transforms Salar de Uyuni into the world’s largest mirror.

Lake Baikal, Russia

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The largest freshwater lake in the world, Lake Baikal holds more water than all the Great Lakes combined. But it becomes much more than just a massive lake during the winter, when the lake freezes over for five months. The frozen water is so clear that you can see almost 150 feet below the surface. In March, as temperatures begin to rise, the icy crust begins to crack, and ice shards are pushed above the surface. Sunlight streams though the blocks of ice and shines in an unearthly shade of turquoise.

Waitamo Glowworm Caves, New Zealand

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There are over 300 limestone caves in the Waitamo region of New Zealand. One has been capturing the imagination of visitors for generations – the Waitamo Glowworm caves. The roof of this cave is home to a massive population of Arancamoa Luminosa, glow worms that bathe the cave in pale greenish blue light as visitors glide across the shallow waters of the cave.

Mount Roraima, Venezuela

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This flat-top mountain sits at the intersection of Venezuela, Brazil, and Guyana. It has inspired both the native South Americans and visitors to the region for centuries. Somewhat more recently, the unique landscape served as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s inspiration for his novel, The Lost World.

In the novel, Sir Doyle imagines a world apart from the rest of the planet, cut off and inaccessible, still inhabited by dinosaurs and other creatures from bygone eras. If you have a chance to see Mount Roraima’s flat, 12-square mile summit towering above the clouds, surrounded by cliffs over 1,000 feet high, you’ll understand how Sir Doyle envisioned a world where life could continue undisturbed.

Zhangjiajie, China

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Deep within the Wulingyuan scenic area of China’s Hunan province lies the Zhangjiajie National Forest Park. Abundant greenery hides the true star of the park – freestanding pillar formations that were carved out over centuries of physical erosion. These pillars also served as the inspiration for a famous science-fiction setting: the alien jungle of James Cameron’s film Avatar. It was modeled after the Zhangjiajie forest.

Zhangye Danxia, China

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The Zhangye National Geopark consists of natural rock formations with fabulous bands of color streaked through them. The formations are the result of more than 20 million years of sandstone and other minerals depositing in the area. The deposits were then twisted to their current angle by steady tectonic movements, which give them the striking appearance they have today.

Valley of the Ten Peaks, Canada

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High in Canada’s Banff National Park lies Moraine Lake, an Alpine destination where crystal-clear waters are bordered by a tall evergreen forest, which is in turn dwarfed by ten imposing peaks, all of which are over 10,000 feet. The lake can be easily reached by road, which means you can visit one of the most awe-inspiring destinations in North American with little more than a long drive.

6 Bridges Only the Bravest Travelers Would Cross

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF TRAVEL TRIVIA)

 

6 Bridges Only the Bravest Travelers Would Cross

Bridges can be symbols of engineering and innovation. Not every bridge is a modern marvel, however. There are places where travelers will find bridges that are downright dangerous. Take a look at the following six bridges and question whether you’d even want to take the first step to cross.

Trift Bridge, Switzerland

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This bridge allows you to see and appreciate the Trift glacier in all of its glory. Trift bridge was built in 2004, when it was no longer possible to cross from one side of the glacier to the other after the loss of ice in the region. While it was replaced by a more secure structure in 2009, the bridge is still only for the bravest of the brave.

The Trift Bridge is currently one of the longest cable suspension bridges in the world, as it runs 560 feet and sits 330 feet high above the glacier lake. Travelers who are brave enough to cross take an average of 223 steps to reach the other side. Safe or not, one wrong step and…

Carrick-A-Rede Rope Bridge, Northern Ireland

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While the Carrick-A-Rede Rope Bridge is only 66 feet long, the first warning you will receive upon arrival is to make sure there are less than eight people in your group. This bridge is feeble enough that it has to restrict the amount of people crossing, so make sure you develop nerves of steel before visiting.

If you do visit this somewhat popular local attraction, try to look at the scenery around you. Even though you’ll be in Northern Ireland’s territory, you’ll be able to catch glimpses of Scotland while crossing. It’s definitely better to keep your eyes up than look down at the rocks below.

Q’eswachaka Rope Bridge, Peru

Credit: Joerg Steber/Shutterstock

This bridge is among the last that the Incas built. It crosses over the Apurimac Canyon, and it’s made entirely from woven grass and straw. Although the arrival of the Spaniards caused many of the bridges to be abandoned, the Q’eswachaka Rope Bridge, which is about 60 miles south of Cuzco, can be appreciated as it was 500 years ago.

If you dare, you could venture to Peru and walk the 118 feet as you look down on a ferocious river from about 60 feet above.

Capilano Suspension Bridge, Canada

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This Canadian bridge is 214 feet above sea level and 460 feet long. It makes the list because it actually has some dark history. To start, back in June 2010, a 17-year-old boy fell off the Capilano Suspension Bridge and died.

That’s not all, in 2012, a 30-year-old Canadian died while trying to retrieve the debit card he had dropped on the bridge.

With these deathly stories, it’s surprising this metal bridge is still an attraction in Vancouver.

Royal Gorge Bridge, Colorado, U.S.

Credit: Daniel Mullins/Shutterstock

Travelers describe crossing this Colorado bridge as an adrenaline-pumping adventure. It’s 1247 feet in length, so it’s definitely meant for the bravest of souls looking for a thrill. It may be tempting to look down at the Arkansas River, but perhaps you should focus on crossing to the other side.

While no accidents or deaths have come from crossing the Royal Gorge Bridge, there are enough restrictions placed to make everybody understand that this is a dangerous construction. For example, regular cars are allowed to cross, but only when it’s verified that there are no pedestrians crossing. Heavy goods vehicles are prohibited.

Hussaini Suspension Bridge, Pakistan

Credit: TripDeeDee Photo/Shutterstock

At the top of the list of the most nerve-wracking bridges is the terrifying Hussaini Suspension Bridge, found in the small town of Hussaini. It’s high above the Borit Lake, and is long and poorly maintained. Travelers who have been brave enough to cross often say it’s “hanging by a thread.

The village dwellers on both sides of the Hunza region built this suspension bridge with materials from the area. Even though it’s dangerous, it is the only means the villagers have to see each other from time to time. Nobody knows how long this bridge will last, but those who have had the guts to cross do highlight the view of the beautiful Himalayan Mountains.

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