I have a thing for islands. They don’t even need to be exotic, I just love them. Some of them are countries, others are belonging to a mainland, some of them are the main part of a city, and others simply a national park. Actually I am now on the eight one, but I used to live on the first one and wish I could live on another one mentioned in the article. Famous or never heard of, what follows are three facts about each visited island and, like always, my pictures.
- Beer was illegal until 1989, they are celebrating Beer Day on March 1st.
- The very first parliament in Europe was met in the year 930 AD in Iceland, in what is today Þingvellir National Park. The site has since been dubbed a UNESCO World Heritage Site because of its cultural, historical, and geographical significance.
- The first explorer to set foot on continental North America is an Icelander, Leif Erikson. He was a Norse explorer and established a settlement on the northern tip of Newfoundland in modern-day Canada.
2. Chiloe Island, Chile
- It is the only place in the world where Humboldt and Magellanic penguins coexist in the wild.
- Home of the potato. With over 400 varieties, more than 90% of them can be traced back to Chilote roots.
- The iconic palofito stilt houses are squatted land since nobody can own shoreline in Chile.
3. Manhattan, NYC, USA
- The subway system was open in 1904, had 28 stations and one ride cost five cents.
- The iconic Empire State Building has its own zip code, 10118. Talking about big!
- 800 different languages are spoken here, I mean in NYC but still… wow!
4. Isla Grande de Tierra del Fuego, Argentina
- Only 30% of the islands have forests, the rest is covered by steppe and cool semi-desert.
- The first indigenous groups arrived on this island around 8000 years ago, with the Yaghan and Selk’nam the descendants of these initial inhabitants.
- There was a massive immigration to the main island between 1883 and 1909, prompted by reports of large amounts of placer gold found during a Chilean expedition in 1879.
5. Elba Island, Italy
- Being rich in one specific material, the granite from Elba was used in building structures like the Cathedral in Pisa and the Pantheon.
- Half of Italy’s iron output comes from this island, one of the oldest geologic areas.
- It became a sovereign principality unde the exiled Napoleon I for a brief period of time, May, 1814–Feb., 1815.
6. Kerkennah, Tunisia
- The original name was “Cercina” because the witch-goddess Circe is thought to have imprisoned Odysseus here, seeing him as too handsome to let go.
- It was used as a port and look-out point by the Romans, to keep note of offshore activity.
- The islands’ population decreased significantly throughout the ’80s due to drought.
7. Isla de la Plata, Ecuador
- It’s a national park, so no one actually resides on the island as it is a natural reserve.
- It is called the poor man’s Galapagos because the island is home to the famous Blue-footed booby which can also be found in the Galapagos Island, but it is way cheaper.
- There is a shrine from Inca times located on the island.
- Perfume originated in Cyprus, the oldest remaining traces found in Pyrgos, on the South of the island, are more than 4000 years old.
- It became a province of the Roman Empire in 45AD, and was the first country to be governed by a Christian.
- Aphrodite is said to have risen out of the water near Paphos.
P.S. For even more photos from my travels make sure you like https://www.facebook.com/alina.ioana.pod/.
As you can notice I do have a large part of the world unexplored, but little by little I will get there as well. Until then comment below with your favourite island and where should I explore next.