Peasant Art Building – one of the strangest buildings in China

A small town in Guangxi, China, is home to one of the strangest-looking buildings in all of country, a 10-storey behemoth that combine an assortment of architectural styles from all over the world. In recent years, Xinxu Town, a small settlement close to Beiliu City, has become popular for a strange building that towers over the dozens of predominantly commercial buildings in the area. Not only it is much taller than most other structures, but it also doesn’t adhere to any particular architectural style! Most of its several spire-like towers…

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Ubang: the village where men and women speak different languages

Some say women are from Venus and men are from Mars, and nowhere is that more real than in Ubang, a Nigerian rural community where men and women have their own separate languages! It’s hard to believe that men and women who grow up together in the same community can end up speaking different languages, but in the case of Ubang’s residents, it’s absolutely true. It’s not exactly clear how many words in the men’s and women’s languages are different, but there are enough examples to make sentences sound different…

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Al Naslaa: Saudi Arabia’s mysterious rock formation

There are many natural occurrences that might puzzle a traveler. One of them is Al Naslaa, a 4,000-year-old geological mystery, located in Tayma oasis, Saudi Arabia, a strange rock formation perfectly split down the middle with the precision of a laser beam. It is made up of two large sandstone boulders supported by a natural pedestal that appears much too small for its purpose. But what really draws people’s attention is the perfect split between the two boulders. The almost flawless split has inspired lots of speculation, and some suggesting…

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Gaet’ale Pond: the Earth’s saltiest natural body of water that belches toxic gas.

The Afar Depression in northern Ethiopia is one of the most tectonically active regions in the world. Shaped by volcanic activity, the floor of the depression is largely composed of lava, and the area is riddled with charming natural formations that literally bake in the scorching sun. One of these is Gaet’ale Pond, the largest of a series of small bodies of water, located near the Dallol crater in Danakil Depression, one of the hottest inhabited locations on Earth. But, despite its balmy temperature, it is certainly not the place…

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Meet the Bull Sharks of Carbrook Golf Course!

You’ve probably heard of crocodile-infested golf course ponds before, but there is a golf course in Australia that is home to an even greater threat that makes water hazards truly dangerous: sharks. The 14th tee at the Carbrook Golf Club in Brisbane is a tricky one, as it’s close to a 21 hectare, 14-meter deep lagoon that happens to be the home of a dozen full-grown bull sharks. They’ve been around since the late 1990s and, even though they are notorious for its aggressiveness especially against humans, the bull sharks…

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Rotomairewhenua: the clearest body of fresh water known to man

Rotomairewhenua, also known as the Blue Lake of New Zealand’s Nelson Lakes National Park, officially holds the title of the clearest lake in the world. Literally translated as the “land of peaceful waters”, Blue Lake is spring fed by the neighboring glacial Lake Constance, and its water passes through a natural debris damn formed a long time ago by a landslide. This debris acts as a natural filter that retains most of the particles suspended in the glacial water, making Blue Lake almost as clear as distilled water. New Zealand’s…

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The Wall of Hives: the “home of Chinese bees”

A near-vertical cliff wall in the mountains of Shennongjia Nature Reserve, China’s Hubei Province, is home to over 700 wooden boxes which make up one of the country’s last sanctuaries for native wild bees. Beekeeping has been carried out in China since at least the 2nd century AD, and about half of the world’s supply of honey comes from the Asian country but, sadly, over 80% of the native bee population is now extinct. The introduction of the European honey bee (Apis Mellifera) is considered the main cause of the…

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Muschats’s Cairn: a stack of stones that honors a murdered 18th-century woman.

For the major part of tourists, this monument looks like a random pile of rocks. And, in a way, that is indeed what it is. It’s a cairn, basically a landmark constructed with irregular stones, and here there is no signage or posting to provide historical context. Instead, one has to dig deeper to realize these stones are the marker of a macabre and unscrupulous story. It was 17 October 1720 when a surgeon named Nichol Muschat lured his wife Ailie into Holyrood Park and killed her. His previous attempts…

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Sloot Motor: the motorcycle that tuns on swamp gas

Gijs Schalkx, a Dutch inventor and engineering student, modified his motorcycle to run on methane harvested from roadside bogs and ponds. Rightly named “Sloot Motor”, because sloot means ‘ditch’ in Dutch, ingenious vehicle features a modified Honda GX160 motorcycle engine, with a hole into the airbox, through which it receives the methane. The genial inventor than hooks a balloon filled with methane to the hole, which acts as the fuel tank. Of course the engine starts with gasoline but, once it starts, it uses the methane to keep going. However,…

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The river that turns On and Off: the spring that breaths!

Just east of Afton town, at the foot of a rocky mountain in Wyoming, lies one of the world’s most mysterious natural wonders: an Intermittent Spring (otherwise known as the Periodic Spring) that intermittently stops and starts flowing again around every 15 minutes. Only a few rhythmic springs exist in the world (another being the famed Gihon Spring in Jerusalem), and Intermittent Spring in Swift Creek canyon is the largest of them all. As its name suggests, this peculiar spring flows intermittently. Here you’ll see a large quantity of water…

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Te Wairoa Buried Village: a Maori village obliterated by an 1886 volcanic eruption.

Located 24 kilometres south-east of Rotorua, Tarawera is a curious-looking mountain, with several large domes and a broad, flat top. This distinctive profile formed during eruptions around 1314 AD. However, early Māori and the Europeans who arrived in the 1800s did not realise that it was an active volcano and, in June 1886, it came to life in a violent one-day eruption – the deadliest in the history of New Zealand settlement. When Mount Tarawera erupted, the surrounding countryside was completely remade. The eruption killed over 100 people and created…

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Here is the story behind the Leidse Koffie!

In the Dutch city of Leiden, coffee comes in an alternative way: it begins with a base of black brew and then it gets a dash of cinnamon liqueur, usually topped off with a nice dollop of whipped cream. Now quite popular in the city, the spiced drink was born from a happenstance discovery and a very creative restaurant owner. Leidse koffie originated in Restaurant de Gaanderij in the early 1980s. Before Peter van de Hoorn bought it in 1982, the monumental building from 1558 was home to the distillery…

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Devil’s Bath: New Zealand’s green sulphur pond

New Zealand’s Wai-O-Tapu volcanic area offers a number of roiling, bubbling geothermal sights, but possibly the most intriguing is one of its most calm! Know as Devil’s Bath, it is a bright green pond full of sulfur-infused stink water. The pool sits in a slight depression likely created from a massive eruption from underground. It is well out of reach of visiting curious, but can be seen clearly from above. The bright green water gets its color from deposits of sulphur that rise to the surface and float on top,…

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The Well of Barhout: Yemen’s mysterious Well of Hell

In the arid wastes of eastern Yemen lies a fascinating natural wonder called the Well of Barhout. Shrouded in mystery and folklore, this “million and millions” years old large hole in the ground said to be God’s most hated spot on Earth. Those who live near the hole believe anything that comes close to the “Hell Pit” will be sucked in without escape. According to a Yemeni legend, “extinct tongues fizz on cold nights” there, a reference to what might be lurking inside the hole. Located in the eponymous valley,…

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Quintessential Grilled Cheese: the world’s most expensive sandwich

Priced at an outstanding $214, Quintessential Grilled Cheese has held the the record for the world’s most expensive commercially-available sandwich for over seven years. And you could say that New York-based restaurant Serendipity 3 is specialized in setting food-related Guinness records. It currently holds several world records, including most expensive dessert, most expensive hot dog, largest wedding cake and largest cup of hot chocolate. But also the record for world’s most expensive sandwich, which happens to be just a humble grilled cheese treat. Named Quintessential Grilled Cheese, it is deceptively…

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Cono de Arita: Argentina’s mysterious natural pyramid

Near the south border of Salar de Arizaro, the sixth largest salt flat on earth and the second largest in Argentina, 70 km from the village of Tolar Grande, lies one of the world’s most mysterious natural formations, an almost perfect cone, it rises unexpectedly in the middle of the salt pan. This is Cono de Arita, so perfectly shaped that it appears man-made, that looms majestically 122 meters above the Salar. Its name comes from the Aymara language where Arita means “sharp”. In fact, all through the early twentieth…

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Will Rogers: the inventor who created machine that turns beer and spirits into soft-serve Ice Cream

The innovative Below Zero ice cream machine uses a unique technique to freeze alcohol, which allows you to turn beers, cocktails and even spirits into delicious soft-serve ice cream. If getting drunk on ice cream it was a dream, now thanks to Will Rogers, inventor and owner of WDS Dessert Stations in Hinkley, Illinois, it has become a reality. The man, who runs his own ice cream shop, was trying to create a highly-caffeinated espresso ice cream flavor when he realized he could use the same technique with alcoholic beverages.…

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The mysteriously ruins of El Salvador Beach

One of the last things you would expect to find washed up on a tropical beach is a concrete abandoned villa, and yet that’s exactly the kind of bizarre discovery that beachgoers at the picturesque La Puntilla Beach in Costa del Sol, El Salvador, are treated on these days. It’s unclear how the building ended up there, but it seems to have been there a while, as it is covered up with what appears like recent graffiti. One of the most popular theories is that the villa was the victim…

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The Golden Boy: world’s most expensive burger that costs 5.000€

The Golden Boy, a delicacy made with 100 percent Wagyu A5, Beluga caviar, king crab, white truffle, among other premium ingredients, has broken the record for world’s most expensive burger, with a price of about 5,000 euros ($6,000). The burger was created by Robbert Jan de Veen, owner of Dutch restaurant De Daltons, who came up with the idea while sitting in his restaurant pretending to get some work done. It seems that, as he browsed the internet to pass the time, he stumbled over the previous record for the…

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Big Wind: the most powerful firetruck ever built

What to you get if you combine an old Soviet tank with two Soviet jet engines and a lot of water? The Big Wind, a fire truck capable of stopping oil well fires all by itself! It was February 1991, near the end of the Gulf War, when the retreating Iraqi army set over 700 Kuwaiti oil wells on fire, thus creating the desert into an almost apocalyptic landscape. Up to six million barrels of oil burned every day for 30 weeks, sending flames as high as 90 meters into…

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Goong Ten: the Dancing Shrimp of Thailand

In the Northeast Thailand region of Isaan along the Mekong River, local cooks often serve meat raw, doused in a spicy, salty, sour marinade of chili, fish sauce, and lime. People in this region have an affair with things that are prepared raw: beef, pork, shrimp, fish, and other meats that are cooked elsewhere in the world, here can be found in their naturally squirming or bloody form. However, street vendors sometimes take the uncooked element one step further, selling a dish known as Goong Ten ( กุ้งเต้น ), which…

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Wat Phu Tok: the most dangerous temple in Thailand?

In Thailand, a country where the majority of inhabitants are Buddhist, there are temples scattered everywhere, even on mountains which are not that practical to build a worship place. Welcome to Bueng Kan province, far in the northeastern Isan region. It’s one of the lesser visited provinces, and you will love it if you are in search for peace, nature, and something off the beaten path. Without a doubt, Wat Phu Tok (วัดภูทอก) is one of the most unique, thrilling, (and scary) temples in Thailand. And, above all, a visit…

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Sad Jelly Noodles: the spicy street food that has a reputation for making people cry.

Anyone brave enough to enjoy a mound of shangxin liangfen, which literally means “Sad Jelly Noodle”, or “heartbreak jelly” should expect to cry. Yes. Cry. Street vendors popularized these translucent noodles, made from green bean starch and hot water, or sweet potato starch, throughout the Sichuan province of China. Despite It was rumoured that this dish was made by a person who missed home, isn’t jelly that makes these delicacy “sad”, but the heap of hot chili peppers and oil that covers them. Either way, everyone eaters seems to agree…

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Arthur Muir, the retiree who took up mountaineering at 68 and conquers Everest at 75

A 75-year-old retired attorney from Chicago recently became the oldest American to ever conquest Everest, the world’s tallest mountain top. And the craziest thing is that he had only started mountaineering 7 years prior. Arthur Muir, a married father of three and grandfather of six (a child in his family was born while he was climbing the mountain), had been fascinated with mountain climbing ever since his father gave him a book about the Himalayas when he was a child, and his passion grew when Barry Bishop, a legendary climber…

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Death Noodles: a Jakarta hole-in-the-wall serves what may be the world’s spiciest noodles!

Some foods become legendary. But if we speak about the so called “Death Noodles”, the legend went viral on the web when one man, Ben Sumadiwiria, claimed he went deaf for two minutes after enjoying a plate of it. His YouTube channel features several additional videos of he and his friends chowing down on noodle bowls that make literally their skin flush and their eyes water. Apparently, nothing strange, as the base of the intense dish is quite innocuous: Indomie noodles, a type of instant spiced noodles made in Indonesia.…

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The chinese man who used Lamborghini exhaust to cook world’s most expensive skewered meat

Recently a young Lamborghini owner in China got his own minute of internet fame by trying to barbecue some skewered pork with the car’s fiery exhaust (and incurring about $80,000 in repair costs). The curious “cooking show” took place when a group was gathered around an orange Lamborghini in an underground garage in Changsha, Hunan Province. Out of nowhere, the sports car owner and his friend decided it would be pretty cool if they could cook their skewered meat using their car’s exhaust, in what many have called the world’s…

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Amalia Eriksson: the trailblazing Swedish businesswoman who created a beloved minty candy called polkagris.

It was 1859, when a new confection emerged on the market in the small town of Gränna, Sweden. It was a hard, minty candy with whimsical red and white stripes. Called polkagris, it soon became one popular and beloved sweet. The treat was the work of Amalia Eriksson, born in 1824 and grew up in Gränna, who ended up marrying a tailor. The poor woman was only 34 years old when became a widow shortly after giving birth to her daughter Ida. Her husband died in dysentery only four days…

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Cheese Tea: bitter, sweet, and salty collide in this cool Asian treat.

Cheese tea is iced tea, often black, matcha, or oolong, that gets topped with a foamy mixture of cream cheese, whipping cream, milk, and salt. It’s true, the concept sounds horrible, but in this case, the cheese topping is more like a thick layer of creamy, salted foam that tops each drink, that found a fanbase among the late-night crowd. The trend then spread to Asian countries and apparently it had its roots from China. A few years ago, HEYTEA (喜茶) (previously known as Royaltea (皇茶) ) claimed to have…

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Wang Lang: the “Super Grannie” who has completed over 100 marathons in the last 20 years

Wang Lang is a 70-year-old Chinese woman has been dubbed “Super Grannie” after it was revealed that she is an avid runner, with over 100 marathons completed in the last two decades! If most people choose to take it easy after they retire, Liaoning-based woman is definitely not one of them. She started running at the tender age of 50, as a way to keep in shape, but soon realized it was her passion. She ran her first marathon in 2004 and hasn’t stopped since, racking over 100 completed marathons…

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Alvastra Abbey: the first Cistercian settlement in Sweden

The ruins of the oldest and most important Cistercian monastery of medieval Sweden preserve a part of local history from before the Protestant Reformation, when people donated land or money to gain easier access to heaven after their deaths. This monastery was founded in 1143 when King Sverker the Elder and his queen, who wanted to gain favor with the church, donated land to the French Clairvaux monks and invited them to come and build the sanctuary. Monks, who belonged to the influential Cistercian Order, brought from Clairvaux modern methods…

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