Such is the magic of architecture that it can convert places of serious business to attractive tourist destinations as well. The United States Air force Academy, which stands on an area of 18,500 acres in the northern part of Colorado Springs in Colorado, USA, has a Chapel for cadets whose amazing structure does exactly so as mentioned above.
The chapel, better known as United States Air Force Cadet Chapel, was built with an idea of providing some quite prayer space for multiple religions like Christianity, Buddhism, and Islam. It was designed by architect Walter A. Netsch and got completed in 1963. In addition to fulfilling its purpose and offering the prayer space to the cadets, it has also become a tourist attraction of Colorado which gets more than half million people annually.
The reason for which the United States Air Force Cadet Chapel has received such popularity is because of its outstanding structure which is made of aluminium, steel, and glass. The most attractive feature of the entire structure is its 17 spires which can never go unnoticed. While the skeleton of the United States Air Force Cadet Chapel is made of steel, it is panelled inside with aluminium and filled with normal or coloured glasses. Apart from this, the 150 metre high structure has separate prayer rooms for each religion and has multiple entry points as well. While approaching the front entrance of the United States Air Force Cadet Chapel there is a staircase made of granite which has hand rails made from steel and covered by aluminium. The rest of the adornments of the chapel along with the neighbouring empty spaces have been the contributions from a number of other companies and people.
In terms of the prayer areas, there are separate spaces for Protestants, Jews, Catholics, Buddhists and those following Islam. There are also rooms called All Faith rooms which are used by people who follow other religious sects apart from those mentioned above. There are separate timings of prayers in each of these sections which do not interfere with one another. Thus, the initiatives which was taken by the people believing in the concepts of Earth-Centred Spirituality and who were also there in the Air Force Academy is now a well appreciated devotional as well as scenic structure.
The importance of this chapel in the Air Force Academy is that while the young minds get trained in becoming the protector of lives and leaders as well, they are also trained to develop a strong spiritual sense. Tourists can take a tour of the United States Air Force Cadet Chapel all week from Monday to Saturdays and also on Sundays but at a different time by taking permission from the Cadet Chapel Public Relations. There are also schedules which do not require permissions. Lastly, the United States Air Force Cadet Chapel is also available for occasions like weddings and similar ones.
Not just a symbol of the modernist approach of United States but also, an example of man’s creative genius is as early years as 1931; the Empire State Building of New York is a point of attraction for both old and young tourists visiting the city. This skyscraper of Manhattan has 103 floors and was the tallest building of the world during its inauguration time. It stands at the juncture of intersection between 5th Avenue and the West 34th Street. If not for anything else then those of you who have watched King Kong are bound to remember the famous climb of the giant up the Empire State Building.
As the location of the building is in New York therefore, it also got its name from the city which was known as the Empire State. While the roof of the Empire State Building is at a height of 1,250 feet, the total height of the skyscraper, including the spike of the antenna on top, is 1,454 feet. As with the passing decades, a number of such skyscrapers came up in different parts of the world so, the position of the Empire State Building got pushed to being the fourth one in United States of America and the twenty third amongst those across the world. Nonetheless, this signature Art Deco style creation still finds a place in the Seven Wonders of Modern World.
Designed by architects like Shreve, Lamb and Harmon, the Empire State Building, before the recent bid of sale was known to be under the owner ship of the Empire State Building Associates which included 2800 investors taking responsibility for the maintenance of the Empire State Building. After the recent most renovation process which took place in 2010, the building got deemed as increasing environment friendly and eco efficient.
Amongst the 102 floors of the Empire State Building, there are commercial set ups and offices till the 85th floor. Amongst the remaining floors are two observatory decks, the one on the 86th floor is an indoor one and the other on the 102nd floor is an outdoor observatory deck. These are most popular with the tourists as they give a 360 degree panoramic view of the entire New York. At the top most part of the Empire State Building there are broadcast antennas and lastly a rod which keeps glowing and indicating the presence to the air traffic. The Empire State Building is known to be the workplace for more than 25,000 employees who use the 73 elevators to move up and down the building. There are also LED lights fitted in the building which change colours to match the significant days of the year like St. Patrick’s Day, Independence Day, or many more.
Keeping in mind the significance of the Empire State Building it has received a good share of media importance. Actually, the top most 103rd floor of the building is mostly accessed by the celebrities when they visit the place.
If you have not had the experience to see pristine nature in a well preserved national park then there is no better place on Earth than the Glacier National Park which is located in the US state of Montana which is on the border of US and Canada. It is also here that the American and Canadian parts of the Rocky Mountains greet each other and give shelter to a numerous species of plants and animals.
The total area covered by the Glacier National Park is about 1,000,000 acres and it has about 130 lakes and 1,000 different natures of plants and animals. This region is also known as the “Crown of the Continent Ecosystem”. After the creation of the Glacier National Park, the Great Northern Railway constructed a number of hotels in the area which were named National Historic Landmark. Thereafter, when the Going-to-the-sun road got completed in the 1932, it was named as the National Historic Civil Engineering Landmark. Now watching the Glacier National Park from this road itself is a reason for which people should visit the place. From here the view of the turquoise coloured lakes, the glaciers, and the uneven mountains simply appear to be stunning.
The Glacier National Park, being a protected land, is home to a number of endangered and rare species of plants and animals. Amongst animals one can see the huge mammals like grizzly, and mountain goat and rare ones like wolverine, Canadian lynx and so on. There is a variety in the species of birds, reptiles, and amphibians too. Amongst trees, the Glacier National Park is home to the red cedar and hemlock. The vegetation includes both prairies and tundra which inhabit the different parts of the national park. Though, forest fires usually do not happen in the park but, in 2003 some 13% of the park did get burnt.
Apart from visiting the park, the other best experiences of the Glacier National Park have to include trips of the 52 miles Going-to-the-sun road which is the only one going inside the Glacier and hiking though the trails to experience nature. Driving through the road gives amazing scopes of taking photographs and feeling the adrenaline rush. There are also historic wooden boat rides which take place through the numerous lakes in the Glacier National Park. During mornings, evenings, and spring times bicycles are also allowed on the Going-to-the-sun-road.
As mentioned previously, keeping in mind the inflow of tourists there are several lodging facilities in and around the Glacier National Park. The two within the park are named Many Glacier Hotel on Swiftcurrent Lake, and Lake McDonald Lodge. These provide authentic forest experiences and also give the dining provisions as per individual choice. The airports which are closest to the national park are Kalispell in Montana. There are also trains which stop on the East and West parts of the Glacier. Lastly, road tours are also available to the park through coach companies like White Motor Company, Glacier Park Inc, and so on.
A keepsake of the old tradition which has a height of 30 metres, the biggest beagle of the world named Sweet Willy, the Dog Bark Park Inn is a hotel which stands on the roadside in the US state of Idaho for those travellers who wish to take a momentary haul in midst of their journey. As the Dog Bark Park Inn is built in the shape of a beagle according to the early architectural style of making buildings in shape of something, it is called as Sweet Willy by the local residents. It is the creation of artist couple Dennis Sullivan and Frances Conklin.
The Sweet Willy brings forth the old American tradition of roadside architecture where travellers used to stop for gas, meals or also sometimes for overnight stay. The Dog Bark Park Inn therefore is equipped with a single room which has a bathroom and also a loft. It is a sign of convenience for the passing by travellers. The Sweet Willy is also given company by other animals, like bears, moose, and fishes, which have been hand carved by the duo. The most important amongst them is Toby which yet another oversized beagle of the world in a statue form with a height of 12 foot. They have invested the entire profit of their life in building the Dog Bark Park Inn and here there are 60 different breeds of dogs in varying poses which have been carved in the style of old folk art. Some of the creations have been done by the couple on the basis of photographs they have been given by their customers.
In the premises of the Dog Bark Park Inn, while there is a facility for bed and breakfast, there is also a cafe, a gift shop, a visitor centre, and also the gallery of the couple which displays the various breeds and poses of the dogs they have carved over the years. It is thereby a good one day tour destination where families and friends can visit in groups. The opening of the bed and breakfast inn happened in the year 2003 and is still maintained by the couple. Such is the geniality of the elderly couple that they claim to help their visitors by assisting them in making their vacation plans and sharing their life, travel and dogs stories with them. They usually prefer to be informed at a prior hand about the visits and encourage touring and educational groups to visit them. Providing a very homely experience to the travellers they call themselves operating the mom and pop operation. It is thus a unique experience to be had once in a lifetime.
They divide two major countries but, their beauty and majesty brings people to them from all across the world. This is the speciality of three separate waterfalls which together form the Niagara Falls. They stand between the borders of United States and Canada and make the southern end of the Niagara Gorge.
The three waterfalls of the Niagara Falls are named, the Horseshoe Falls which is on the Canadian side and is separated from the American part by the Goat Island and the American Falls and the smaller Bridal Veil falls both of which are on the American side. There is another small island called the Luna Island which separates the American Falls and the Bridal Veil falls. These three falls are located on the Niagara River and also empty the Lake Erie in to Lake Ontario. They stand out amongst all the natural waterfalls exiting on the earth because of their highest rate of water flow.
The water of the Niagara Falls is known to have a drop of 165 feet and amongst the three the Horseshoe Fall is famous for being the most powerful. On the American side the nearest city to the Niagara Falls is known to be Buffalo of New York and that on the Canadian side is Toronto. The main source of water for the Niagara Falls is known to be the Wisconsin Glaciers and also the Great Lakes. The striking part of the Niagara Falls is known to be its width which higher than 6 million cubic feet.
Apart from being beautiful, the Niagara Falls is also a great source of hydroelectric power. During the peak seasons it is estimated that the amount of water falling down exceeds more than 225,000 cubic feet per sec. Usually this is the time of spring or early summers. It is during this time that the high amount of water is used for hydroelectric production. The flow of the water of the Niagara Falls is also managed and as per this process during the night times the flow is made half. It gets further reduced during winters and this regulation of diversion and flow is done as per the Niagara Treaty of 1950 and is carried out by the International Niagara Board of Control.
The water flowing through the Niagara Falls appears bright blue or green because of the high amounts of dissolved salts and rock flour which is carried during the erosion process done by the Niagara River. There are facilities for ships to pass through the Niagara Falls with the help of the Welland Canal which is in turn connected to the Saint Lawrence Seaway.
Niagara Falls has often made headlines because of people who have jumped or made plunges from the top. Other adventures like wire walking or tight rope walking over the gorge has also happened in the location. Because of its wonder status, the N