The Golden Gate Bridge is one of the most frequently visited sites in the San Francisco area. Many tourists can easily see that it’s a massive, impressive, staggering work of engineering but they don’t always know some of the fascinating history behind it. Goldengatebridge.org has a ton of interesting information, including a list of Frequently Asked Questions. Here are three of our favorite facts. 1. The Golden Gate Bridge once had the world’s largest suspension span As the website states, “The 4,200-foot long suspension span of the Golden Gate Bridge was the longest span in the world from the time of its construction in 1937 until New York City’s Verrazano Narrows Bridge was opened on November 21, 1964.  It is 60 feet longer than the Golden Gate Bridge.  The Verrazano was the longest single span bridge until July 17, 1981, when the Humber Bridge in England, spanning the Humber River, was opened for traffic with a main span of 4,626 feet. Today, both the Great Belt East Bridge in Denmark (main span of 5,328 feet) and the Akashi-Kaikyo Bridge in Japan (main span of 6,532 feet) have main span lengths which exceed that of the Humber Bridge.  The table below shows the relative suspension bridges in comparison. 2. The name has nothing to do with its color While it’s obvious today that the name isn’t related to its color, many tourists assume that it was once gold. In fact, according to the website, “The term Golden Gate refers to the Golden Gate Strait which is the entrance to the San Francisco Bay from the Pacific Ocean.  The strait is approximately three-miles long by one-mile wide with currents ranging from 4.5 to 7.5 knots.  It is generally accepted that the strait was named “Chrysopylae” or Golden Gate by Army Captain John…

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Madrid is one of Europe’s most historically rich cities. Its documented history traces back to the ninth century, but the area in fact has been inhabited by humans since prehistoric times. Here are some selected highlights from the history of Madrid, Spain’s capital city: -The area now known as Madrid was inhabited by prehistoric humans. Numerous ancient objects have been uncovered in excavations along the banks of the River Manzanares, such as axes and large mammal remains, as evidence. -Originally named Mayrit, the city of Madrid was founded by the emir Muhammad at the close of the ninth century A.D. The city came to prominence during the Arab occupation of the Iberian peninsula, but passed into Christian hands during the Reconquest of Spain by the Christians. -The present location of Madrid—in Spain’s center—was established in 1083 by King Alfonso I. All prevalent symbols of Muslim influence and rule were removed during this period. -In 1329, King Fernando V assembled the famed Court of Madrid for the first time ever. This preceded one of the darker periods in Spanish history, the Spanish Inquisition. -In the 14th and 15th centuries, in the wake of the Reconquista, Moors and Jews banded together and formed a concentrated population in Madrid—named Moreria to this day. In 1494 they were all denounced as “unbelievers” and expelled from Spain. Mosques and other Muslim imagery once again disappeared from the area. -On May 2nd, 1808, a revolt began in the Puerta de Sol—thus beginning the War of Independence. The large-scale war, in which the Spanish fought against Napoleon and their former allies in France, has given rise to a number of patriotic memorials in the city of Madrid. The Plaza Dos de Mayo is the most famous of these. -In 1835, the world-famous University of Alcala de Henares…

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Going down the Lombard St in San Francisco in a go cart ……. wheeeeeeee

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