The Island of Recycled Opportunity

If you are looking to own your own tropical island, you can expect to pay a lot of money, or your can do what Richard Sowa did: build your own. Joyxee Island, located 30 yards off the coast of the Mexican Island Isla Mujeres, is the end result of Sowa's labors. The tropical paradise was... Continue Reading →

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The Accidental Invasions of Liechtenstein

Switzerland has a long-standing tradition of neutrality and rarely gets involved in military confrontation. It may, therefore, surprise you to learn that Switzerland has invaded its neighboring country Liechtenstein, not once, but three times in a 22-year period -- each time by accident! On December 5, 1985, the Swiss Army fired rockets as part of... Continue Reading →

Great Strategy. Bad Geography.

When it came to big names in the Viking community, Hastein was certainly a rising star. This 9th century chieftain made his name with raids in the Frankish Empire (notably avoiding Scotland, as Vikings had been warned to do) and joint efforts with Sweden’s King Björn Ironside to raid countries in the Mediterranean. It was... Continue Reading →

Is it Bubble Gum? Is it Barbie? No, it’s Lake Hillier

If you are visiting Lake Hillier, at first glance you may think you have stumbled across a dumping site for a bubble gum factory. At second glance, you may think it is Barbie's swimming pool. In reality, you will have found one of nature's most amazing places: the Australian lake of pink waters. Discovered by... Continue Reading →

Which Nation Has the Most Time Zones? The Answer May Surprise You!

Do you think you know which nation has the most time zones? Think again, because the answer may surprise you. Common sense tells us it should be Russia. The largest nation in the world should cover the most time zones, right? If your answer was Russia, you are incorrect. While Russia does boast an impressive... Continue Reading →

Which Country is in All Four Hemispheres?

The Republic of Kiribati is located in the central Pacific Ocean, 2,400 miles (3,855 km) southeast of Hawaii. Its population of 100,000 is spread over its 33 atolls and reef islands. Those islands and atolls straddle the Equator, thus placing the country in both the southern and northern hemispheres. It also straddles the 180th meridian,... Continue Reading →

Just When You Think It Couldn’t Get Worse….

  One would think that living in the Caribbean paradise of St. Pierre, Martinique would be idyllic. Even the occasional volcanic activity of Mont Pelée seemed insufficient to ruin this tropical paradise. That's why no one paid much attention to the rumbles and steaming vent holes that opened along the mountain's sides in April 1902. How... Continue Reading →

Don’t Try to Pronounce It If You Are Wearing False Teeth

The 85-characters long Maori name for a hill in Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand, is the longest place name found in any English speaking country. It is, Taumatawhakatangihangaoauauotameteaturipukakapikimaungah-oronukupokaiwhenuakitanatahu, which roughly translates as, “the place where Tamatea, the man with the big knees, who slid, climbed and swallowed mountains, known as the land-eater, played his nose flute... Continue Reading →

Need Extra Days for Christmas Shopping? Move to Foula

The island of Foula in the Shetland Islands of Scotland operates off of a different calendar than the rest of the United Kingdom. When Great Britain adopted the Gregorian calendar in 1752, Foula chose to remain on the Julian calendar, except it did not observe leap year in 1900. As a result, the date in... Continue Reading →

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