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Countries that have a king or a queen (or a prince)

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, July 31, 2011 at 19:14:17 :: General

What countries have a king or queen?

Here is a list of the Monarchies around the World:


- Lesotho: Constitutional Monarchy - Ceremonial Monarch: King Letsie III
- Morocco: Constitutional Monarchy - Active Monarch: King Mohammed VI
- Swaziland: Absolute Monarchy - Active Monarch: King Mswati III


- Bhutan: Constitutional Monarchy - Active Monarch: King Jigme Khesar Namgyal Wangchuck
- Brunei: Constitutional Monarchy - Active Monarch: Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah
- Cambodia: Constitutional Monarchy - Ceremonial Monarch: King Norodom Sihamoni
- Japan: Constitutional Monarchy - Ceremonial Monarch: Emperor Akihito
- Malaysia: Constitutional Monarchy - Active Monarch: Sultan Abdul Halim of Kedah
- Thailand: Constitutional Monarchy - Ceremonial Monarch: King Bhumibol Adulyadej

The Wat Phra Kaew (on the right) inside the Grand Palace, with the Phra Siratana Chedi (middle), followed by the Phra Mondop and the Prasat Phra Dhepbidorn (the Royal Pantheon). The Hor Phra Naga on the left. Grand Palace, Bangkok.


- Tonga: Constitutional Monarchy - Active Monarch: King George Tupou V


- Andorra: Constitutional Diarchy - The President of the French Republic and the Bishop of Urgell, Catalan Countries, are de facto princes of Andorra. The current princes are Nicolas Sarkozy and Joan Enric Vives Sicilia.
- Belgium: Constitutional Monarchy - Ceremonial Monarch: King Albert II
- Denmark: Constitutional Monarchy - Ceremonial Monarch: Queen Margarethe II
- Liechtenstein: Constitutional Monarchy - Active Monarch: Prince Hans Adam II
- Luxembourg: Constitutional Monarchy - Ceremonial Monarch: Grand Duke Henri
- Monaco: Constitutional Monarchy - Active Monarch: Prince Albert II
- Netherlands: Constitutional Monarchy - Ceremonial Monarch: Queen Beatrix
- Norway: Constitutional Monarchy - Ceremonial Monarch: King Harald V
- Spain: Constitutional Monarchy - Ceremonial Monarch: King Juan Carlos I
- Sweden: Constitutional Monarchy - Ceremonial Monarch: King Carl Gustaf XVI
- United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland: Constitutional Monarchy - Ceremonial Monarch: Queen Elizabeth II

Buckingham Palace, London

Middle East

- Bahrain: Constitutional Monarchy - Active Monarch: King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa
- Jordan: Constitutional Monarchy - Active Monarch: King Abdullah II
- Kuwait: Constitutional Monarchy - Active Monarch: Emir Sabah Al-Ahmed Al Jaber Al-Sabah
- Oman: Absolute Monarchy - Active Monarch: Sultan Oabus ibn Sa'id
- Qatar: Absolute Monarchy - Active Monarch: Emir Sheik Hamad ibn Khalifa al-Thani
- Saudi Arabia: Absolute Monarchy - Active Monarch: King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al-Saud
- United Arab Emirates: Although the UAE has a constitution and a president, it is neither a constitutional monarchy nor a republic. It is a federation of seven monarchies, whose rulers retain absolute power within their emirates - President: Sheik Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan


Some countries are Constitutional Monarchies with Ceremonial Monarchs outside of the country. Most of them are former British colonies and are both a Parliamentary Democracy and a Constitutional Monarchy:

- Antigua and Barbuda
- Australia
- Bahamas
- Barbados
- Belize
- Canada
- Grenada
- Jamaica
- New Zealand
- Papua New Guinea
- Saint Kitts and Nevis
- Saint Lucia
- Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
- Solomon Islands
- Tuvalu

Visit all these countries and more on Landolia!
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 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, October 10, 2010 at 09:07:34 :: General

The Danube (pronounced /ˈdænjuːb/ DAN-ewb in English) is Europe's second longest river after the Volga. It is notable for being classified as an international waterway.

View from Devin castle at the confluence of the Danube and Morava rivers. Devín Castle (Slovak: hrad Devín or Devínsky hrad) is located in Devín, which is a part of Bratislava, Slovakia.

The river originates in the Black Forest in Germany as the much smaller Brigach and Breg rivers which join at the German town of Donaueschingen. After that it is known as the Danube and flows southeastward for a distance of some 2850 km (1771 miles), passing through four Central and Eastern European capitals, before emptying into the Black Sea via the Danube Delta in Romania and Ukraine.

Known to history as one of the long-standing frontiers of the Roman Empire, the river flows through or acts as part of the borders of ten countries: Germany (7.5%), Austria (10.3%), Slovakia (5.8%), Hungary (11.7%), Croatia (4.5%), Serbia (10.3%), Bulgaria (5.2%), Moldova (0.017%), Ukraine (3.8%) and Romania (28.9%).

On October 4, 2010, a toxic red sludge that burst out of a Hungarian aluminum factory's reservoir flooded 7 villages in West Hungary, including the village of Kolontár, a small village in Veszprém county, that has been completely evacuated. On October 7, 2010, the sludge entered the Danube, threatening an ecological disaster. The pH content of the red sludge entering the Danube had been reduced to the point where it was unlikely to cause further environmental damage. It had been tested earlier at a pH level of 13 and now was down under 10, and no dead fish had been spotted where the slurry was entering the Danube.

Buda Castle (Budai Vár) and the banks of the Danube in Budapest, Hungary

Find more pictures of the Danube and the countries it goes through on Landolia.
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World's busiest airports and passenger traffic

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, August 22, 2010 at 11:37:22 :: General

The definition of the world's busiest airports has been specified by the Airports Council International in Geneva, Switzerland. The ACI defines and measures the following 3 types of airport traffic:

- Passenger traffic: total passengers enplaned and deplaned, passengers in transit counted once,

- Cargo traffic: loaded and unloaded freight and mail in metric tonnes,

- Traffic movements: landings and take-offs of aircraft.

The Air traffic control tower at Kuala Lumpur Airport, Malaysia

Busiest Airports

The following airports make claims based on objective volume measures that are defined above:

- Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, Atlanta, Georgia, United States:

Largest number of passengers annually. (1998–present)
Most arrivals and departures (operations) annually. (1999–2000, 2005–present). In 2007, Hartsfield again set the world's record for most aircraft movements in one year with 994,346.
Most flights (2006).

- Memphis International Airport, Memphis, Tennessee, United States:

Most cargo traffic by weight annually. (1993–present)

Other current claims

The following airports also make claims based on objective measures, but some of the claims are based on traffic classification:

- London Heathrow Airport, London, United Kingdom:

Largest number of internationally-bound passengers annually (2004–present)

- Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport, Paris, France

- Frankfurt International Airport, Frankfurt am Main, Germany

Most international destinations served.

Suvarnabhumi Airport, (New) Bangkok International Airport, (Thai: ท่าอากาศยานสุวรรณภูมิ), is the new international airport serving Bangkok, Thailand

30 World's busiest airports

The thirty world's busiest airports by passenger traffic are measured by number of total passengers:

1 Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, Atlanta, Georgia, United States: 35,321,214 passengers,

2 Beijing Capital International Airport, Chaoyang, Beijing, China: 28,951,795 passengers,

3 O'Hare International Airport, Chicago, Illinois, United States: 25,937,954 passengers,

4 Tokyo International Airport, O-ta, Tokyo, Japan: 25,341,083 passengers,

5 London Heathrow Airport, Hillingdon, Greater London, England, United Kingdom: 24,411,325 passengers,

6 Los Angeles International Airport, Los Angeles, California, United States: 22,880,634 passengers,

7 Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas, United States: 22,453,548 passengers,

8 Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport, Roissy-en-France, Val d'Oise, Île-de-France, France: 21,892,826 passengers,

9 Denver International Airport, Denver, Colorado, United States: 20,375,916 passengers,

10 Hong Kong International Airport, Chek Lap Kok, Hong Kong, China: 20,077,000 passengers,

11 Frankfurt Airport, Flughafen (Frankfurt am Main), Frankfurt, Hessen, Germany: 19,641,359 passengers,

12 Madrid-Barajas Airport, Madrid, Comunidad de Madrid, Spain: 19,181,068 passengers,

13 Dubai International Airport Garhoud, Dubai, United Arab Emirates: 18,870,253 passengers,

14 Suvarnabhumi Airport, Racha Thewa, Bang Phli, Samut Prakan, Greater Bangkok, Thailand: 18,106,039 passengers,

15 John F. Kennedy International Airport, Queens, New York City, New York, United States: 17,519,992 passengers,

16 Soekarno-Hatta International Airport, Cengkareng, Jakarta, Java, Indonesia: 16,978,071 passengers,

17 Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport, Huadu, Guangzhou, Guangdong, China: 16,938,302 passengers,

18 Singapore Changi Airport, Changi, East Region, Singapore: 16,614,377 passengers,

19 Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, Haarlemmermeer, North Holland, Netherlands: 16,390,751 passengers,

20 McCarran International Airport, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States: 16,213,278 passengers,

21 Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport, Phoenix, Arizona, United States: 16,127,674 passengers,

22 George Bush Intercontinental Airport, Houston, Texas, United States: 16,069,436 passengers,

23 Shanghai Pudong International Airport, Pudong, Shanghai, China: 15,453,252 passengers,

24 San Francisco International Airport, San Mateo County, California, United States: 14,927,070 passengers,

25 Charlotte Douglas International Airport, Charlotte, North Carolina, United States: 14,770,384 passengers,

26 Miami International Airport, Miami-Dade County, Florida, United States: 14,686,892 passengers,

27 Orlando International Airport, Orlando, Florida, United States: 14,585,174 passengers,

28 Kingsford Smith Airport, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia: 14,519,728 passengers,

29 Narita International Airport, Narita, Chiba, Kanto-, Honshu-, Japan: 13,867,310 passengers,

30 Seoul Incheon International Airport, Incheon, Republic of Korea: 13,461,736 passengers.

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The World's Best Places to Live 2010

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, July 24, 2010 at 18:14:02 :: General

If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be? Although the answer likely varies from person to person, there are several universal factors that make any spot a great place to live. To get a sense of the best places to call home, the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) assembles annual rankings of 140 major cities worldwide based on which have the most ideal living conditions. Here is the list of the top 10 cities (Source: ):

1- Vancouver, Canada

The Burrard Street Bridge, Art Deco, six lane bridge in Vancouver, British Columbia that spans False Creek connecting downtown to Kitsilano

2- Vienna, Austria

3- Melbourne, Australia

4- Toronto, Canada

CN Tower, Toronto

5- Calgary, Canada

6- Helsinki, Finland

7- Sydney, Australia

The Sydney Opera House by night, on Bennelong Point in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

8-(tied) Perth, Australia

8-(tied) Adelaide, Australia

10- Auckland, New Zealand

Auckland Imax building and theater, with the Sky Tower behind - Auckland, New Zealand

Visit all these cities and countries and more on Landolia.
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African National Football Teams Nicknames

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, July 04, 2010 at 07:20:56 :: General

While the European Football teams go for colors ("Les Bleus" in France, "Squadra Azzurra" in Italy, "La Roja" in Spain), the African teams are nicknamed after animals. Some fiercer than others...

Bobo-Dioulasso Old Mosque built in 1880, Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso

Here are the nicknames of the 16 countries who played the last Africa Cup Of Nations (CAF) in Angola in early 2010:

- Algeria: Les Fennecs (The Desert Foxes)
- Angola: Palancas Negras (Black Antelopes)
- Benin: Les Ecureuils (Squirrels)
- Burkina Faso: Les Etalons (Stallions)
- Cameroon: Les Lions indomptables (The Indomitable Lions)
- Ivory Coast: Les Elephants (The Elephants)
- Egypt: The Pharaohs
- Gabon: Les Panthères (The Panthers)
- Ghana: The Black Stars
- Malawi: The Flames
- Mali: Les Aigles (Eagles)
- Mozambique: Mambas (kind of snake)
- Nigeria: The Super Eagles
- Togo: Les Eperviers (The Sparrowhawks)
- Tunisia: Les Aigles de Carthage (Eagles of Carthage)
- Zambia: Chipolopolos (The Copper Bullets)

Victoria Falls or Mosi-oa-Tunya on the Zambezi River, Zambia

And the winner was... Egypt! Visit all these countries and more on Landolia!
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The World's 10 Most Expensive Cities 2010

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, June 27, 2010 at 14:09:19 :: General

According to "ECA International", a global human resources company, the World’s 10 Most Expensive Cities 2010 are:

1. Tokyo, Japan
Rank in 2009: 2

The strength of the yen has brought Tokyo back to the No. 1 spot on ECA International's ranking for the first time since 2005. Rent for a two-bedroom apartment for expats is typically more than $5,000 per month in Tokyo, according to data from EuroCost International. While visitors need more pocket money here than in any other city, the monthly consumer price index in Tokyo's wards has actually dropped year-on-year for 14 straight months as of May 2010, based on figures from Japan's statistics bureau.

The Rainbow Bridge (レインボーブリッジ), view from Ariake Station, crossing northern Tokyo Bay between Shibaura Pier and the Odaiba waterfront development in Minato, Tokyo, Japan

2. Oslo, Norway
Rank in 2009: 8

Oslo rose above Copenhagen as the most expensive city in Europe when the kroner strengthened against other currencies. ECA International says an upward trend in oil prices, a short recession, and Norway's reputation as a safe haven for investors contributed to the kroner's rise.

3. Luanda, Angola
Rank in 2009: 1

Angola's capital slipped to third place this year as the kwanza depreciated. Prices in Luanda have actually increased in the past year, but currency changes offset any inflation, according to ECA International. In addition to everyday goods, EuroCost International estimates that the average expat pays more than $3,500 per month for a two-bedroom flat in Luanda.

4. Nagoya, Japan
Rank in 2009: 3

Japan's fourth most populous city, Nagoya is also among the country's most expensive. The city ranks No. 1 for the cost of rice: $9.14 per kilogram, according to ECA International data. As Japan's auto hub, the Nagoya area is an important center of business: about 44 percent of automobiles produced in Japan are made here, according to the Greater Nagoya Initiative Center. Such companies as Toyota, Honda, Suzuki, Mitsubishi, Volkswagen, and General Motors have headquarters, manufacturing operations, or distribution points in the Nagoya region.

5. Yokohama, Japan
Rank in 2009: 4

About half an hour by commuter train from Tokyo, this port city has active shipping, biotechnology, and semiconductor industries. Yokohama is one of the world's most expensive cities, but companies here enjoy lower operating costs compared with the nearby capital. Nissan opened a new headquarters in Yokohama this year and reportedly will sell its office in Tokyo to cut costs.

6. Stavanger, Norway
Rank in 2009: 14

This small seaside city earned its riches from oil in the North Sea and has become known as Norway's petroleum capital. says food expenses in Norway are about 50 percent higher than the EU average: A can of soda is about $2.80, and a beer at a bar can be $12.

7. Kobe, Japan
Rank in 2009: 6

The city has one of Japan's largest ports and has become home to many heavy machinery, iron and steel, and food product companies. According to the Japan External Trade Organization, 117 foreign and foreign-affiliated companies have offices in Kobe. As the price of Kobe beef, the style of high-grade meat named after the city, suggests, food is costly here, as are other living expenses.

8. Copenhagen, Denmark
Rank in 2009: 7

A 2009 "survey" of 73 international cities by UBS found that employees in Copenhagen have the highest income. Places with higher salaries often have higher prices, but residents here enjoy good living standards overall. Some examples of the cost of living: Renting a DVD costs about $8 per night, a pair of women's jeans is more than $150, and a one-way ticket on public transport costs about $3.70.

Nyhavn canal with all it's townhouses and boats, stretching from Kongens Nytorv to the harbourfront just south of the Royal Playhouse, Copenhagen, Denmark

9. Geneva, Switzerland
Rank in 2009: 9

Geneva, home to many companies and U.N. organizations, is one of the most expensive cities for food and household appliances. Food prices in Switzerland are 45 percent more expensive than in the rest of Western Europe, and the cost of electronics and appliances in Geneva is among the highest worldwide, according to a 2009 UBS report.

10. Zurich, Switzerland
Rank in 2009: 10

Zurich, Switzerland's largest city, is the country's main business center and the headquarters city for many financial companies, including UBS and Credit Suisse. Although Zurich had the greatest number of company bankruptcies in Switzerland last year, according to Dun & Bradstreet, the inflation rate started to increase again this year after falling in 2009.

Other expensive cities include Moscow (15), Paris (16), Seoul (20), Stockholm (21), Berlin (26) and Sydney (30). Central London ranks only 39.

Visit the world now, on Landolia.

Source Business Week .
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Happy New Year 2010

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, December 23, 2009 at 13:19:00 :: General

From Egypt...

Sunrise over the Suez Canal area, waterway in Egypt Puerto Rico...

Garita at Fort San Felipe del Morro or El Castillo San Felipe del Morro, named in honor of King Philip II of Spain, San Juan, Puerto Rico

...From England...

The Eden Bridge over the River Eden in Carlisle, was built in 1815 to a design by Sir Robert Smirke, with five long arches. The width was doubled in 1932. South Korea...

Gyeongbokgun changing guards in front of Gwanghwanum gate, Gyeongbok Palace, Seoul, South Korea.

...Where ever you live on this small planet, the Landolia team thanks you for being a visitor and/or a member of the Landolia photo database (more than 20,000 photos now, and counting!).

We wish you a Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year 2010.

The Landolia team.
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Seasons Greetings

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, December 26, 2008 at 13:55:48 :: General

The Landolia team takes a few days off. We wish you a very good time for Christmas and New Year's eve!
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And the new winner is...

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, July 26, 2008 at 01:36:42 :: General

Zoltan, from Budapest, Hungary, wins an Apple iPod touch!

View of Budapest with the  Széchenyi Chain Bridge and the Gresham Palace - Budapest, Hungary

He is our second winner on Landolia!

Stay tuned, as a new contest will come soon!

And keep on submitting your photos and visiting the world thru photos, on Landolia!
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The Landolia team takes Holidays

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, July 12, 2008 at 14:39:34 :: General

The TWIP team takes 1 month of holidays and gives you "rendez-vous" in 30 days for the next post.

In the meantime, don't hesitate to browse the website and enjoy viewing more and more beautiful photos of the world, and submit your own photos.

Also don't forget the contest. One week to go before the final draw. We will mention the winner's name in this blog next week.

We don't leave you alone: find below a sample of beautiful photos recently added on Landolia.

Thank you for your continual support.

See you soon!
The Landolia team

Erta Ale active shield volcano, Afar Region (አፋር ክልል), homeland of the Afar people, Ethiopia (ኢትዮጵያ)

The Sydney Opera House by night, based on the competition winning entry by Danish architect Jørn Utzon - on Bennelong Point in Sydney Harbour, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

View of Tehran and Milad Tower at sunrise, Tehran Province
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