Tag Archives: Greece

Avoiding a Greek Tragedy


Avoiding a Greek Tragedy

by Amy Lignor


For those who love history, or just extremely good movies, you have already set your eyes on the Skyrian horse. Sometimes referred to as the Skyros pony, these semi-wild creatures are legendary. Since well before what many believe to be the beginning of creation, this elite horse was responsible for carrying Man into battle – from simple men to the gods, themselves. In fact, the Skyrian horse was supposedly responsible for pulling Achilles’ own incredible chariot. Seeing their plight in 2016, however, it would be safe to say that all the gods on their mount want nothing more than to send thunder and lightning down on us mortals for the simple fact that the stunning horse is on the verge of becoming extinct.

Skyrian horse, legendary creatures, Greek island of Skyros, Skyros Island Horse Trust, Endangered Species list, Skyros pony, Greece


These creatures have lived on the Greek island of Skyros for two thousand years, and now one organization – the Skyros Island Horse Trust – has made it their mission to save this extremely rare animal. From the overgrazing of sheep to interbreeding with donkeys to the one problem that is plaguing all species around the world – disappearing habitats – there are only 200 Skyrian horses left on Earth.


The Skyros Island Horse Trust is trying to not only save but also bring back the species ten-fold. Through welfare, conservation and education initiatives, this nonprofit is striving to make sure that one of the few creatures carved on ancient friezes, do not perish.


As with all of the creatures sitting on the Endangered Species list, the Skyrian horse needs to have their quality of life improved. And the Trust is also working overtime to create the widest genetic pool of the equines on the island while staying true to the Skyrian type. The Skyros pony has an extremely friendly demeanor, making them perfect for equine-assisted therapy as well as teaching children how to horseback ride, yet another “hobby/sport” that has declined.


A compelling animal, the Skyros pony is thought to be featured on the actual Parthenon in Athens, as well, which makes them very much a living, breathing facet of history. To see them go extinct would be a horror.


When speaking with scientists, it is stated that the Skyros pony descends from equines brought to Greece as far back as the fifth century B.C. Once the isles were filled with them, yet the animals grew smaller in number as well as in size, evolving to island life. Solid in color, the Skyrian horse has a thick, plush mane. Standing 3.5 feet at the shoulder, they are classified as a pony because of their stature, yet have similar proportions to full-size horses with small, strong hooves.


It is more than time to turn our gazes toward these loving animals and try to find a way to all come together in order to bring back conservation in Mediterranean countries, which is difficult because of all the daily problems they are facing. With the country of Greece stuck in a very difficult economic situation at the moment, the Skyrian horse is even worse off than other animals’ trying to be saved globally. Even though this particular horse has status and is a truly rare breed, Greece has no government resources or funding to help save them.


In the end, the people are the ones that must stand up and fight for the animal’s survival. Even though in politicians’ eyes the complete extinction of the Skyros pony falls far down on their list of things that must be done, sitting back and doing nothing will most definitely lead to another Greek tragedy. One that is most definitely not fiction, and one we can definitely stop from happening.


Source:  Baret News

Travel to Remote Summer Locations & Enjoy the Luxury


Travel to Remote Summer Locations & Enjoy the Luxury

by Amy Lignor


Weather’s warm, skies are sunny, and school is basically all sewn up for the year. It is summertime and time to travel. But, for many, they are still looking for that summer getaway located far, far away from children who want to scream and yell on those fun amusement park rides out there, and from those families who look more exhausted after they Summer travel, Enjoy, Life, Brazil, Israel, Greece, Canada, Iceland, Caribbeanvacation than before. Well…for those who are looking for that serenity, that utter relaxation found in an exquisite locale where a vacation really is a break, below you will find some highly sought after places you can take off to!


Let’s start in Brazil. At the Belmond Hotel das Cataratas, which is located inside Iguazu National Park just a short distance from the stellar and iconic Iguazu Falls, vacationers will be able to sit back and enjoy absolute beauty. Luxury is the key word for this location. Resembling a colonial Portuguese residence, the rooms are a mixture of bright art and deep, rich wood furniture. And for those who wish to partake in a little ‘Indiana Jones’ adventure while there, everything from helicopter rides to jungle paths are available.


If the Belmond is full, set on twelve thousand acres of a nature reserve in Toledo, Belize, the Belcampo Belize is there waiting high up in the hills. Views of tropical rainforests, stunning gardens – even a private tram is available to guests who wish to hit the serene lakes to take up the paddles and go kayaking and canoeing in the unforgettable surroundings.


In Israel, in the Negev desert where the Ramon Crater rests, is the Beresheet Hotel. Perched on the edge of the cliffs there, private villas with private pools, balconies and amazing desert views can be found.


Perhaps another mountain chain? In the splendor of Greece, high up in the Pindus Mountains, sits the Aristi Mountain Resort & Villas. This is all about nature and shedding the ‘real’ and ‘noisy’ world in order to truly get away. Hiking this area will be burned on the memory for all time, and the suites and villas available to guests are equally as beautiful as the land they sit upon.

For the nature lover looking a little closer to home, Canada also offers some amazing picks. At the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise (to be found in Banff National Park, Alberta), outdoorsmen and women, as well as alpinists, have loved this locale for more than a century. Surrounded by mountains and the Victoria Glacier, this is one place offering entertainment all four seasons. From the lover of skiing to the mountain biker wishing to explore right now, this is the place to head to.


At the other end of Canada on Vancouver Island in B.C. is The Wickaninnish Inn. The ocean is everywhere you look there. The hotel offers fresh seafood at their highly reviewed restaurant and the panoramic views and natural locations instill absolute enjoyment.


Are you that winter lover? No place like Iceland, wouldn’t you say? Just an hour away from the capital of Reykjavik travelers can find the ION Luxury Adventure Hotel. And the name most definitely fits. This place is all about adventure; from trekking over glaciers to fly-fishing in freezing rivers, at night the traveler can sit back in the luxury, have a drink, view the Northern Lights, and plan for their next adventure when the sun comes up.


One of the coolest places for winter fiends to stay at is the Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort located in the Finnish Lapland. Just 250 kilometers north of the Arctic, this place is perched right at the edge of the wilderness near Urho Kekkonen National Park. The hotel is magnificently unique; the architecture is that of actual glass igloos from which the traveler can observe those breathtaking Northern Lights. Log cabins, snow igloos and suites are also available.


From cold to warm, the Anse Chastanet Resort on St. Lucia’s Caribbean coast is the place to choose if wanting the sun. The rooms include infinity pools where one can relax and look up at Jade Mountain rising behind them. This 600-acre beach front resort has a wealth of scenery, from manmade buildings to the natural world. Built on the philosophy of architecture working in perfect harmony with the Caribbean views, individual bridges, sanctuaries and rugged stoned-faced columns make this particular vacation choice a mesmerizing experience.


So…if you’re ready to take some time off and enjoy nothing but luxury and beauty—well-earned after all the work you’ve done—get on the internet and check on the availability of these (and other) remote spots to travel where you can enjoy absolute peace.


Source:  Baret News