The War Rubble of Crosby Beach

Crosby Beach, about five miles North of Liverpool, is basically a stark reminder of World War II. What remains of the city before the conflict that destroyed the world in the middle of the 20th century is literally strewn across these two miles of coastline: from pebble-sized remnants of bricks eroded by the adjacent Irish Sea, to graves, or large keystones of major civic buildings. Historically, Liverpool was one of the most heavily hit British cities by the German Luftwaffe, the Nazi air force. It was the second most bombed…

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Iona’s Beach: the singing beach on Minnesota’s North Shore

Minnesota, or the Land of 10,000 Lakes, boasts a lot of beaches to choose from, with their pictoresque rocky shores and beautiful sandy dunes alike await visitors every summer. Each offers its own beauty, but there is one beach in particular that is truly unique. It is Iona’s beach, unlike any other in the world as, instead of silky, golden sand, it is covered in smooth pink rocks that, if you know when to listen, sing. The beach sings its signature song as the waves come in and disturb the…

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Breiðamerkursandur: Iceland’s stunning Diamond Beach

A black sand beach littered with huge chunks of glistening ice is today one of the most visited attractions in Iceland. Locally known as Breiðamerkursandur, “Diamond Beach” takes its name from the chunks of pristine ice scattered across the black volcanic sand and glistening like giant, uncut diamonds. It is located next to Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon on the South Coast of Iceland, about six hours away from the country’s capital, Reykjavik. Although it’s not part of the popular Golden Circle Tour, Diamond Beach has become one of the country’s top…

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The Stromatolites of Hamelin Pool – Australia

Located within a sheltered bay on the coast of Western Australia, theb Hamelin Pool Marine Nature Reserve appears at first glance to be a regular rock-strewn beach, though the rocks look kind of odd. Those rocks are not actually rocks. Rather, they are active colonies of one of the first life forms on our planet. They are called “stromatolites”, and they are made by a single-celled organism know as “cyanobacteria”. Previously known as blue-green algae, cyanobacteria exist since about 3500 million years ago, well before the existence of any other…

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Florida: a man stalks beach as Death to protest reopening during pandemic

Florida’s governor, Ron DeSantis, announced on last Friday that state parks will soon reopen, even as the coronavirus pandemic continued and Death himself still stalked the beaches of the Sunshine state. The same Death that goes viral on social media after a man dresses up to alert Floridians to the dangers of reopening their economy too soon. The “Grim Reaper” in question was actually Daniel Uhlfelder, a lawyer and campaigner for public beach access who put on a cowl and wielded a scythe. As a socially distanced interview with a…

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Ponce De Leon Inlet Lighthouse – Florida

With its 53 meters high, Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse is the third tallest lighthouse in America and it has stood guard over Florida’s coast since 1887. Its story began in 1835, when a lighthouse was built on the south side of what was then called Mosquito Inlet (now Ponce de Leon Inlet). A conical, brick tower and a dwelling were hastily completed and the first keeper assigned to the station was William H. Williams who received an annual stipend of $450. However Keeper Williams didn’t have much work to…

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Macuti Lighthouse and Shipwreck – Mozambique

We are in Beira, Mozambique. Macuti Beach is along the main coast road between Beira city and the airport. If you find yourself there, a visit to the beach it’s well worth, to witness this unusual scene: the remains of an old shipwreck lying on the sand directly in front of a mysterious but quaint abandoned lighthouse. At high tide, only a few rusted bulkheads are visible above the breakers, but at low tide, you can walk or wade right through the wreckage. The red-and-white-striped Macuti Lighthouse (the beach is…

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Cemitério de Navios – The Angolan Ship Cemetery

We are in Angola. Sitting on the Western Coast of Africa, the port of Luanda is the capital and largest city in a nation that has been one of Africa’s most war-torn, with rival factions battling between 1962-2002. Founded by the Portuguese in 1575, the city has finally achieving peace in 2002 after a long civil war, and the country is just now beginning to recover. About a 30-minute drive north of Luanda there is an incredible sight: a barren beach with as many as 50 rusting ships on or…

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An alternative side of Brooklyn: Gravesend’s Accidental Park

It seems like every square inch of New York City has been categorized, labeled, and put in more or less probable tourist guides. But if you know where to look on the fringes of the city, you can still find places without names e without tourists. There are hidden gems throughout New York City, and this is no exception: on the waterfront of Gravesend, Brooklyn, is an all but untraveled wedge of vacant land, nestled between aging marinas and the northern border of Calvert Vaux Park on Bay 44th St.…

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The spectacular Neskowin Ghost Forest in Oregon

In the small coastal town of Neskowin in Tillamook County in Oregon, somewhere between Lincoln City and Pacific City lie the remains of an ancient forest, rising out of the sand and seawater. Dubbed the Neskowin Ghost Forest, they are an eerily beautiful memory of the towering Sitka spruce trees that stood here for some two millennia. For nearly 300 years the “phantom forest” strains remained hidden under the sand, resting until they were uncovered during the winter of 1997-1998, when the coast of Oregon was pummeled by powerful storms…

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The battle of Frangokastello -Crete- and the Drosoulites

We are in Greece: Frangokastello, located in the south west coast of Crete, is a beautiful Venetian castle that was built in 1371 as a garrison to impose order on the rebellious Sfakia region and to deter pirates. It is just another testament to the Venetians desire to impose their rule, as the castle was never used by them. The castle has a rectangular shape, with a tower at each corner and the remains of a Venetian coat of arms above the main gate. The buildings within the walls and…

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Point of Ayr Lighthouse in Wales: an enchanted landscape and a keeper who never left it.

We are along the north coast of Wales. As the sun sets and the sea sweeps in across Talacre beach the lighthouse often seems to float on the waves in a mysterious and beautiful optical illusion. Correctly known as the Point of Ayr Lighthouse, but also named “Talacre Lighthouse”, it was originally built in 1776 to help guide ships away from the nearby sandbanks and provide a bearing for the great port of Liverpool to the northeast and mark the Mersey Estuary and the River Dee. Unusually for a lighthouse,…

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