A place to live

 

 

Originally, a medina, in Arabic‎ al-madinah al-qadimah (‘old city’), was a distinct city section in North African cities, and in Malta. A typical medina is surrounded by a wall and has many narrow, maze-like streets.

The city of Meknès, northern Morocco, originally called Amknas in the Berber language, was founded in the 11th Century by the Almoravids. It became capital of Morocco during the reign of Sultan Moulay Ismaïl (1672-1727), who turned it into an impressive city, with a harmonious blending of the Islamic and European Maghreb styles. (Source: whc.unesco.org/en/list/793)

Our troubles in this city are described on the page Travel episodes – Africa 1980: Arduous journey across Africa.

 

 

Street in the medina of Meknès. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

Gateway in the medina of Sousse, Tunisia. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

In all probability, Grand Hotel in the town of Helensville, New Zealand, once lived up to its name, but maybe it is not so grand anymore? (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Kina 1987
These houses along a river, running through the town of Yangshuo, Guangxi Zhuang Province, southern China, are built on stilts to avoid flooding of the interior during heavy downpours. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Red scented geraniums (Pelargonium hortonum) are popular house plants all over Europe. Three examples are shown below.

 

 

Alperne 2017
In the village of Stechelberg, Lauterbrunnen Valley, Berner Oberland, Switzerland. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

Frankrig-Spanien 2007
In the town of Hecho, Hecho Valley, Pyrenees, Spain. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

In the village of Furtigen, Karner Valley, Berner Oberland, Switzerland. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Reconstructed Iron Age house, Lejre Museum, Zealand, Denmark. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Farm house near the village of Dana, Kali Gandaki Valley, Annapurna, Nepal. Firewood has been stacked in the shed to the right. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Early in history, people across the globe began living their entire life on board boats, for which reason they are called house boats.

 

 

In the Kashmir Valley, northern India, many people live in house boats along canals in the largest city of the area, Srinagar, and on Lakes Nagin and Dal. The birds to the left are Muscovy ducks (Cairina moschata). (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

Frankrig-Spanien 2007
House boats on the Seine River, Paris. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

Californien 2013a
House boats in Lake Kaweah, Lemon Hill Recreation Area, California. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

For thousands of years, among fishermen at several locations in China, who were living in house boats, a common practice has been to tame cormorants (Phalacrocorax carbo ssp. sinensis) to assist in fishing. – This bird is presented on the page Nature Reserve Vorsø: Night in the cormorant city, whereas other species of cormorant are dealt with on the page Silhouettes.

 

 

House boat on the Li River, Guangxi Province, southern China. Tamed cormorants are sitting on the bamboo raft. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

When the British were ruling in India, they would escape from the blazing summer heat on the North Indian plains by retiring to highlands further north. One of their favourite places was Kashmir, where the locals made an income from renting out house boats to the British. This practice was continued after India’s independence, when wealthy Indians, and later Western tourists, copied the English.

 

 

Elegant house boats on Lake Nagin. The trees with yellow autumn foliage are poplars. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

’White House Pueblo’, an abandoned former Native American dwelling, built on a rock shelf, Canyon de Chelly National Monument, Arizona, United States. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

For thousands of years, a huge marsh area in southern Iraq, between the Euphrates and Tigris Rivers, was the home of the Madan tribe, whose way of life was completely adapted to the wet habitat. They moved about in canoes, built their reed houses on islets, and made a living by hunting and fishing, growing rice, and raising water buffaloes.

The regime of Saddam Hussein Abd al-Majid al-Tikriti (1979-2003) put an end to their way of life by draining the marshes, as a retaliation for the Madan siding with the Americans during the First Gulf War (1990-1991).

This interesting wetland is presented in detail on the pages Travel episodes – Iraq 1973: The hospitable mudir, and Iraq 1973: Dust storm and sheep’s head.

 

 

These pictures are from 1973, prior to the destruction of the marshes. At that time, there were almost no roads in the marshes, and people got around in long, slender canoes, called meshof. In both pictures, flat cakes of cow dung are laid out to dry in the sun, later to be used as fuel. The woman is baking flat loaves of bread, called hrobes, in a clay oven. (Photos copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

The only thing to disturb woodland serenity at this house in Bredlund Plantation, central Jutland, Denmark, is the faint noise from a highway. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Village house, decorated with a painting, depicting peacocks (Pavo cristatus), near Sawai Madhopur, Rajasthan, India. Dried cow dung is stacked in front of the house, later to be used as fuel. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Houses, built on poles along a lake shore, Damnoensaduak, Thailand. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

For hundreds of years, the Dingle Peninsula, south-western Ireland, was a remote area, where the Gaelic-speaking population adhered to their language and culture. Today, this peninsula is a very popular tourist destination.

 

 

Irland 1987-99
A patch of sunshine partly illuminates a valley with farm houses and fields, enclosed by stone walls, Dingle Peninsula. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

Irland 1987-99
Street in Dingle, the main town of the peninsula. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Villages in the upper valleys of northern Nepal experience a very harsh climate, with intensely cold winters, and cool summers with fierce sunshine. The roofs are flat, indicating that rainfall in these areas is sparse.

Many of these villages are dominated by Buddhist Tibetan peoples, and prayer flags are often attached to poles on the house roofs, fluttering in the wind. These brightly coloured pieces of cloth, on which mantras are printed, are always placed in this order: blue, white, red, green, and yellow. When they flutter in the wind, the mantras on them are dispersed into space, for the benefit of humankind. Another typical sight in these villages are firewood and brushwood, stacked on the roofs.

Tibetan Buddhism is dealt with in detail on the page Religion: Buddhism.

 

 

Nepal 1998
A thin layer of newly fallen snow partly covers the houses in the village of Ghyaru, situated at an altitude of 3,650 m, Upper Marsyangdi Valley, Annapurna. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

In the village of Braga, likewise in the Upper Marsyangdi Valley, houses are built very close to one another up a slope, the roof of one house acting as a terrace of the house above. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

Annapurna 2007
The village of Kagbeni is situated in the dry Upper Kali Gandaki Valley, in the district of Mustang. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

In Scandinavia, during the Middle Ages, so-called bul houses were built of the durable oak wood, in which planks fit tightly together in wooden slots, also made of oak wood. This practice meant that construction of a single house required felling of several large trees, and the supply of suitable oak trees was soon exhausted. Instead, people began building so-called half-timber houses, in which the walls consisted of a frame of oak planks, and the space between them was filled out with clay bricks, plastered with a mixture of mud and mortar.

 

 

Detail of a reconstructed Middle Age bul house, in which thick oak planks fit tightly together, Middle Age Museum of Bornholm, Denmark. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

Half-timber houses in the old part of the city of Ystad, Skåne, Sweden. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

Bornholm 1977-96
On the island of Bornholm, Denmark, many half-timber houses have been preserved, as these in the town of Gudhjem. (Photos copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

Half-timber house from the 1800s, its roof consisting of seaweed, Byerum, Læsø Island, Denmark. In former days, this type of roof was typical of this island. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Tyrkiet 2006
Kızıl Adalar, or ‘Prince Islands’, as they are called in English, are a group of nine islands in the Marmara Sea, near Istanbul, Turkey. This picture shows mansions on the island of Kınalı Ada. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Nordindien 1997
Fishing nets, drying in front of a house in Srinagar, Kashmir Valley, northern India. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Californien 2011a
Cooper Cabin, a panel-built house from 1861, is the oldest intact building on the Big Sur Coast, California, today situated in Andrew Molera State Park. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Lake Tonle Sap in Cambodia is the largest lake in Southeast Asia. This lake is home to a rather large group of Vietnamese, living in so-called ‘floating villages’ – houses built on pontoons or rafts, anchored to the lake bottom. More pictures from this area may be seen on the page Culture: Boats.

 

 

Cambodia 2009
Cambodia 2009
Vietnamese houses, Tonle Sap. (Photos copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Chile 2011a
Mansion in Cartagena, Chile. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

During the heydays of the Soviet Union, the city of Anadyr, Chukotka Province, Siberia, was of huge importance due to the presence of a gigantic missile launch, in which several missiles, armed with nuclear weapons, were aimed at various targets in the U.S. Following the collapse of the Soviet Union, the whole business was covered with soil, and the importance of Anadyr vanished.

Today, this area bears the marks of decay and indifference, in equal measures. Rubble, wires, iron pipes, oil drums, scrapped trucks, workmen’s huts, and a lot of other rubbish is ubiquitous, and nobody cares to clean up the mess. During the Soviet Era, you just did what you were told, which does not exactly encourage personal initiative. Today, when you are not told to do anything, it seems that nobody wants to take the trouble to clear the mess, and thus beautify the area.

Our adventures in Chukotka are described on the page Travel episodes – Siberia 2011: Caterpillar trip in Chukotka.

 

 

Chukotka 2011
Apartment buildings in Anadyr Airport City, Chukotka. The ones in front are abandoned, while the gaily painted ones in the background are still inhabited. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Indien 2003
This diesel engine in the Little Rann of Kutch, Gujarat, India, is pumping salty groundwater into a pan, where the water evaporates, leaving the salt behind. The tent is the home of a salt worker’s family. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Costa Rica-2
Private-home-cum-tourist-info-centre, Tortuguero National Park, Limón, Costa Rica. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Taiwan 2014c
CTaiwan_2017a_268
Taichung is a huge city in western Taiwan, home to about 2 million people. Many parts of this city are marked by high-rise buildings. In the upper picture, the buildings are dimmed by air pollution. (Photos copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Farm in the Aðaldal Valley, northern Iceland, surrounded by snow-clad mountains. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Many farm houses in Nepal are ochre-coloured, built in two storeys, like this one in the Kathmandu Valley. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Sydlige Afrika 1996-97
Sunset over Lusaka, the capital of Zambia. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Yunnan 2007
Village house and stacked firewood, east of Zhongdian, Yunnan Province, China. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Californien 2013b
Apartment building, reflected in the façade of a high-rise building, San Diego, California. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Egypten 1999
Years ago, homeless people began to settle in a graveyard near the Hakim Mosque, Old Cairo, Egypt. Over the years, an entire community has evolved – a town within the town of the dead. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Narrow alley in the city of Bhaktapur, Kathmandu Valley, Nepal. This city is mainly inhabited by Newars, a people of mixed Indo-European and Mongolian origin. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Houses in Nuuk, the capital of Greenland. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Apartment buildings in Gamla Stan (‘Old City’), Stockholm, Sweden. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

The indigenous population of Borneo is a mixture of Malayan tribes, including Iban, Punan, Kayan, Kelabit, and Penan, known by the common name Dayaks. Usually, a Dayak village consists of only one house, called a longhouse, which is in fact an entire community under one roof.

You may read more about Dayaks and longhouses on the page Travel episodes – Borneo 1975: Canoe trip with Punan tribals.

 

 

Longhouse near the town of Kapit, Sarawak. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

The town of Lalibela, northern Ethiopia, is famous for its unique array of churches and monasteries, dating back to the 11th and 12th centuries. Many of these buildings are carved down into the bedrock, which is soft, red, volcanic tuff.

Lalibela is described in detail on the page Travel episodes – Ethiopia 1996: Timkat – a Christian festival.

 

 

House in Lalibela. The round building is a storage building for crops. The plants in the foreground are agaves. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Farm house and hay tedder, Anno 1975, near Westerhever, Eiderstedt, Schleswig-Holstein, Germany. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

The Ifugao is one out of a dozen Malayan tribes, who inhabit northern Luzon, Philippines. At least 2,000 years ago, this people constructed fantastic terraced fields on the mountain slopes, irrigated through an advanced system of canals. On these terraces, they grow their main staple, rice, supplied with sweet potatoes, taro, and various vegetables. They also raise chickens and black pigs, and the men hunt wild animals in the jungle.

You may read about my adventures among this people on the page Travel episodes – Philippines 1984: Shamanism among Ifugao tribals.

 

 

Filippinerne 1984
Houses in the village of Bocos, Banawe. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

In autumn, hardwood forests of north-eastern United States are a spectacle to behold, when the foliage of a number of trees, including red maple (Acer rubrum) and sugar maple (Acer saccharum), display an array of red and yellow. Especially gorgeous is the foliage of red maple, which turns a brilliant orange, scarlet, or yellow – or sometimes all three colours on the same leaf.

Many more autumn pictures from this area, and elsewhere, may be seen on the page Nature: Autumn.

 

 

House, surrounded by autumn forest, Berkshire, Massachusetts. More than a hundred Canada geese (Branta canadensis) are swimming about in the lake. You may read about this species on the page Nature: Invasive species. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

In 1973, together with my late friend Arne Koch Christoffersen, I stayed for several weeks in Luristan, south-western Iran. Our at times rather bizarre adventures in this area are described on the page Travel episodes – Iran 1973: In the mountains of Luristan.

 

 

Farm house in Luristan. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Nepal 2013
Many of the houses in the town of Taplejung, eastern Nepal, are painted blue. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

In 1987, I stayed a couple of weeks in the town of Shigatse, Tibet. At that time, Chinese authorities had already begun levelling large areas of the town to create a ‘modern’ (i.e. communist concrete style) town. In 2004, I visited Shigatse again, and very little remained of the old quarters.

Read more about my adventures here and elsewhere in Tibet, see Travel episodes – Tibet 1987: Tibetan summer.

 

 

Tibet 1987
Beautiful old-style houses, Shigatse, 1987. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

Tibet 1987
Modern Chinese house complex, Shigatse, 1987. In those days, traffic in this town was almost non-existing, so this police officer, directing traffic in a brand-new street crossing, is not overwhelmed by his work. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Tyrkiet 2006
Colourful apartment complexes in the town of Zonguldak, northern Turkey. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Antigua, the former capital of Guatemala, is a gorgeous old Spanish colonial town, with cobbled streets, pastel-colored houses, arches across the streets, and a huge number of spectacular churches.

Antigua is presented in detail on the page Travel episodes – Guatemala 1998: Country of the Mayans.

 

 

Many houses in Antigua are well-preserved, often painted in pastel colours. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

A green and shady patio in front of a residential house, Antigua. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Early in spring 2009, I paid a visit to the Wumeng Shan Mountains, Guizhou Province, China. You may read more about this trip on the page Travel episodes – China 2009: Among black-necked cranes.

 

 

Village in the Wumeng Shan Mountains, covered by a thin layer of newly fallen snow. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Mansion from the British Colonial Era, Charleston, South Carolina, United States. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

The Unga are a Bantu people who live on islands in the great Bangweulu Swamps, northern Zambia. Their main occupation is fishing, and they grow manioc, or kassava (Manihot esculenta), besides collecting a number of wild plants, such as rhizomes of water-lilies (Nymphaea) and roots of papyrus (Cyperus papyrus). They also hunt birds and antelope.

At the end of the dry season, between August and November, the water level in the Bangweulu Swamps has subsided, causing the fish to concentrate in smaller areas. At this time, most Unga families move from their village to stay in temporary fishing camps in the interior of the swamps, living in small grass huts, made from branches and reeds.

Read more about the Bangweulu Swamps and the Unga people on the page Countries and places: Bangweulu – where water meets the sky.

 

 

The huts in an Unga fishing camp may look rather primitive, but they allow the wind to pass through the walls, keeping the interior wonderfully cool. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

The city of Salt, Jordan, as of 1977. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

A peculiar wedge-shaped house, built where two streets join at a sharp angle, Rueilli, Taiwan. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

The vast Thar Desert stretches across the state of Rajasthan, north-western India, and further west into Pakistan. This desert is surprisingly densely populated. Scattered across the bleak landscape lie numerous towns and villages, inhabited by various peoples, belonging to various religions, such as Jains, Bishnois, Muslims, and Hindu Rajputs.

During the era of the great trading caravans, a side branch of the Old Silk Road led through the city of Jaisalmer, near the Pakistani border. Travelling along this route, numerous camel caravans brought goods to and from India, trading with faraway China, Persia, Turkey, and Europe. As wealth accumulated in Jaisalmer, rich traders built extravagant and ornate sandstone mansions, called havelis, their walls and balconies decorated with beautiful and detailed carvings.

Jaisalmer and the Thar Desert is dealt with in detail on the page Travel episodes – India 2003: Camel safari in the Thar Desert.

 

 

Nordindien 1985-86
Havelis in Jaisalmer. (Photos copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

Nordindien 1985-86
As a stark contrast to the mansions above, this picture shows a narrow lane in Jaisalmer. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

Indien 2003
Nordindien 1991
Wattle-and-daube houses in the villages Mari (top) and Khorma, Thar Desert. (Photos copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Indonesien 1985
Children, peeping out from the door opening in their home, made of split bamboo stems, in a village near Kintamani, Bali, Indonesia. The shy girl only shows an eye! (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Guizhou-Yunnan 2007
A house and a small garden plot, constructed on the roof of a high-rise building, Guiyang, Guizhou Province, China. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

As the world population has soared, people must live close together. – Manhattan, New York City, seen from Empire State Building. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Before construction of this serpentine road, leading down to Masca, Tenerife, Canary Islands, this village indeed had a very isolated location. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Alperne 1968-2001
Morning light on a row of houses in the town of Golling, Salzburg, Austria. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Homeless people have erected a dwelling on a walkway in Cairo, Egypt. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Apartment complex, Kowloon, Hong Kong. Laundry is hung out on poles to dry. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Gompas are Tibetan Buddhist monasteries, described in depth on the page Religion: Buddhism.

 

 

Ladakh 2000
This gompa in the village of Lamayuru, Ladakh, northern India, has a dramatic setting, built atop eroded crags, while village houses have been built beneath the rocks. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Homes of rope makers, Ambala, Haryana, India. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Thulo Shyabru is a village, situated on a ridge in Langtang National Park, Nepal. Still, a few houses in this village are built of wood, with beautifully carved window frames, but this millennia-old craft is quickly disappearing, giving way to houses built of bricks or concrete, with pre-fabricated windows.

 

 

Beautifully carved window frames, Thulo Shyabru. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Gjorslev Estate, Stevns, Zealand, Denmark, was built around 1400 on the order of the Bishop of Roskilde, Peder Jensen Lodehat (died 1416). This powerful man was chancellor of Denmark, and friend and adviser of Queen Margrete I (1353-1412). Today, Lodehat’s castle consists of a 30-metre-high tower and four buildings, erected in the shape of a cross, built of bricks and limestone from the Cliffs of Stevns. They are surrounded by a moat. In 1638 and 1843, respectively, two wings were added. (Source: gjorslev.dk/Gjorslevhistorie.htm)

 

 

Sjælland 2006-11
Horse, grazing in front of Gjorslev Estate, Stevns, Zealand, Denmark. Leaves of London planetree (Platanus x acerifolia) are seen in the foreground. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Sydindien 1997-98
Khond tribal village, near Rayagada, Odisha (Orissa), India. – Many pictures of Indian tribal people are presented in the gallery at People: Tribals of India. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Myanmar 2007
This longboat transports passengers and goods down the main canal in the town of Nyaung Shwe, Lake Inle, Myanmar. The houses in the background are built on stilts. – More pictures from this area may be seen on the page Culture: Boats. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Chile 2011a
Houses, built helter-skelter, Valparaiso, Chile. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Woman in a window, Udaipur, Rajasthan, India. – This gorgeous city is described on the page Travel episodes – India 1991: Attending Hindu festivals in Rajasthan. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Midnight sun on the village of Ekkerøy, Varanger Peninsula, northern Norway. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Asien 1972-73
In 1973, when this picture was taken, houses in this village in the Alborz Mountains, northern Iran, were constructed along a rock wall, partly built into caves. Our visit to these mountains is related on the page Travel episodes – Iran 1973: Car breakdown at the Caspian Sea. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Europa 1972-2005
Wooden houses in the town of Lihula, Estonia. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Apartments in San Juan, the capital of Puerto Rico. Bougainvilleas are grown on the balconies. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Lots of chimneys, Dublin, Ireland. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Coast redwood (Sequoia sempervirens) is a conifer, which is the tallest tree in the world, reaching a height of up to 115 m. It is also among the longest-living trees, some individuals being more than 1,800 years old. Before commercial logging began in the 1850s, this tree occurred in the wild along coastal California (excluding the southernmost part), northwards to the south-western corner of Oregon. Today, it is restricted to rather scattered localities from Monterey County, south of San Francisco, northwards to extreme south-western Oregon.

 

Other pictures of these impressive trees may be seen on the page Plants: Ancient and huge trees.

 

 

Californien 2013
Tree House is an ‘apartment’, which is carved into the trunk of a huge coast redwood, Leggett, California. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Alperne 1968-2001
The city of Thun was established along the Aare River, Berner Oberland, Switzerland. This picture was taken from the city castle, Schloss Thun. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

In the 1970s, some bedouins in the Syrian Desert were still living in black tents.

 

 

Asien 1972-73
This family has erected their tent at the outskirts of the great marshland of southern Iraq, 1973. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

In the 1600s, a number of wars were fought between Denmark and Sweden. The Danish King, Christian V, ordered a fortress erected on a tiny islet near the island of Bornholm, in the Baltic Sea, south of Sweden. Construction took place 1684-1687. This island, which until then had been uninhabited, was named Christiansø, in honour of the king. Later, the neighbouring island was named Frederiksø, in honour of his successor, Frederik IV.

 

 

Bornholm 2017
This picture shows the former staff quarters on Christiansø, called Gaden (‘The Street’). Today, apartments have been constructed in these buildings. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Europa 1972-2005
Farm house in the Mokra Mountains, Kosovo, the Balkans. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Frankrig-Spanien 2007
Village east of Millau, Cévennes Mountains, France. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

The town of Lijiang, Yunnan Province, China, is criss-crossed by canals. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Wattle-and-daube houses with grass roofs in a village near Butembo, eastern Zaire, 1981. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

The Nabataeans were an Arab people, in Arabic called al-ʾAnbāṭ, who, around the 1st Century A.D., lived in the northern part of the Arabic Peninsula and in present-day Jordan and Israel. Their assumed capital was Raqmu, today called Petra, which had an estimated population of 20,000.

 

 

In 1977, when this picture was taken, very few tourists visited the gorgeous ruins of Petra, Jordan. In those days, some of the caves of the area were still inhabited. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Californien 2013
Alternative style of building, Mendocino, California. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Estimates vary, but there may be as many as 3 or 4 million Nubians, living in Egypt. When the Condominium Agreement of 1899 fixed the boundary between Egypt and Sudan, Lower Nubians found themselves under direct Egyptian rule and politically separated from their kin to the south. This arbitrary frontier divides the Nubian-speaking people more or less equally between Egypt and Sudan. Close ties of culture, language, and family continue to unite the people north and south of the border, and until the evacuation of 1964, which accompanied the building of the Aswan High Dam, there was continual visiting back and forth between them.

Egyptian Nubia is part of the Governorate of Aswan, which also includes a populous area, whose inhabitants are not Nubian. As a result, Nubians have found themselves a minority within their native province. (Source: minorityrights.org/minorities/nubians)

 

 

Egypten 1999
Nubian village on the Sehel Island, in the Nile River, Aswan. The houses may look very traditional, but people are not out of touch with the modern way of life, as is evident from the satellite dish. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

The small island Karativu, off the west coast of Sri Lanka, is only inhabited during the fishing season, and most of the fishermen leave their wives and children on the mainland. The village here consists of about a hundred huts, constructed of branches, covered with mats made from palm leaves. Some are completely open, while others are equipped with palm-leaf walls.

Read about our adventures on Karativu and in Wilpattu National Park on the page Travel episodes – Sri Lanka 1974: An illegal walk through Wilpattu.

 

 

Sri Lanka 1974-75
Fishermen’s huts, Karativu. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

While black rain clouds are looming on the horizon, a patch of morning sunshine illuminates the town of Ooty, a hill station in the Nilgiri Mountains, Tamil Nadu, South India. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Lake Malawi is the third-largest lake in Africa, 575 km long and up to 85 km wide, covering an area of c. 23,000 km2. You may read more about this great lake on the page Travel episodes – Malawi 1997: A three-day ferry cruise on Lake Malawi.

 

 

Village on the shores of Lake Malawi. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

The Batak are a group of closely related Austronesian peoples, including the Karo, Pakpak, Simalungun, Toba, Angkola, and Mandailing, who live in a large area of northern Sumatra, Indonesia. My acquaintance with these people stems from a visit to Lake Toba in 1975.

More pictures of the Batak may be seen on several other pages on this website, including People: Children around the world, Culture: Musicians, and Culture: Folk art around the world.

 

 

Sydøstasien 1975
Beautifully decorated Batak tribal houses in the village of Porsea, Sumatra, one with an old-type straw roof, the other with a corrugated tin roof. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Sydspanien 2005
Typical white-washed houses in the town of Casares, Andalusia, Spain. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

In a suburban area of Taichung, Taiwan, a retired soldier has adorned an entire neighbourhood – walls, streets, doors – with colourful paintings. For this reason, the area has been dubbed Tsai Hung Tsun (‘Rainbow Village’). Several other pictures of these paintings may be seen on the page Culture: Folk art of Taiwan.

 

 

Tsai Hung Tsun (‘Rainbow Village’), Taichung. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Alperne 2016
Typical apartment blocks from the Communist Era in the city of Leipzig, Germany, which, until 1989, was situated in East Germany. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Frankrig-Spanien 2007
The fortified town of Berdun, Aragon, Spain, was established on a hilltop with a wide view. The lower picture shows a street in this town, shortly after a rain shower. (Photos copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

The city of Jodhpur, Rajasthan, north-western India, was founded in 1459 by Rajput Prince Rao Jodha. The Old Town is aptly called The Blue City, as most of its houses are painted a light blue. Originally, these blue houses were inhabited by Brahmins, and their colour indicated that here you could ask advice about disease as well as religious issues. Furthermore, the blue paint contains copper oxides, which keep termites at bay.

 

 

Nordindien 1991
Blue houses, Jodhpur. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Göreme, central Turkey, is an area of numerous earth pyramids, eroded out of a comparatively soft layer of tuff rocks. These structures are formed, where larger rocks protect the underlaying soil from being eroded by rain, over the years forming majestic pillars, which often rise steeply out of the surrounding soil.

 

 

Tyrkiet 2006
Tyrkiet 2006
In Göreme, caves have been carved into many of these earth pyramids, and people still live in some of them today. (Photos copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Europa 1972-2005
Village and boats, Lake Skadarsko, Montenegro. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

The village of Namche Bazaar has been established around a natural well in a bowl-shaped depression on a mountain slope in the Khumbu area, eastern Nepal. This village is mainly known for a huge market, taking place here every Saturday.

 

 

Nepal 2002
Namche Bazaar, seen from a nearby hilltop. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Alperne 1968-2001
Winter in the town of Annaberg im Lammertal, Salzburg, Austria. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

USA 2012
Alternative style of house-building, Reeds Beach, Cape May, New Jersey, United States. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Uttarakhand 2008
Houses, erected on stilts along a polluted river at the outskirts of the city of Haridwar, Uttarakhand, India. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Nepal 1985
Sections of the main street, leading through the village of Larjung, Kali Gandaki Valley, Nepal, are covered, giving the impression of walking through tunnels. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

USA 2000-01
House in a clearing in a deciduous forest, near Waynesville, South Carolina, United States. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Alperne 2017
Apartments in the city of Sion, Valais, Switzerland. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Yunnan 2007
Morning light on a village of the Bai minority, north of Dali, Yunnan Province, China. – Many pictures of Chinese tribal people are presented in the gallery at People: Tribals of China. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Decorated house in a village of the Bena Kabende tribe, northern Zambia. – You may read more about this people on the page Travel episodes – Zambia 1993: Hunting shoebill with camera. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

 

 

Nepal 1998
Early morning light partly illuminates a huge house, with beautiful wooden balconies, in the town of Ilam, eastern Nepal. (Photo copyright © by Kaj Halberg)

 

 

 

(Uploaded January 2018)

 

(Latest update December 2019)