Braavos the Great
|Braavos the Great
Βρααβοσ ο Μέγας
|Motto: All gods are honored in Braavos|
|• Mayor||Ioannis Sgouros (Template:Polparty)|
|• Total||2,758 km2 (1,065 sq mi)|
|• Density||7,329.83/km2 (18,981.86/sq mi)|
Braavos the Great (Sinopian: Βρααβοσ ο Μέγας), commonly known as Braavos (Sinopian: Βρααβοσ), is the capital and largest city of Sinope, and one of the largest city on Adonia. Founded shortly after 228, Braavos has been since 562 the capital of the Sinope Republic. The city is famous for its canals, Poseidon's Square, the Doge's Palace and its carnival. Braavos the Great is actually also one of the 60 administrative region and a municipality of Sinope. It is one of the biggest and most influential city of Adonia. The historical city of Braavos itself, now a borough of Braavos the Great, is located on over 120 islands and is connected to the mainland and the borough of Patras by a causeway. Braavos the Great's patron God is Poseidon, the God of Sea, according to the Old Gods religion.
Braavos is one of the only five cities in Adonia considered as a Global Alpha++ city. Braavos the Great's demography shows a conglomeration of a large number of ethnic communities. There are population of every Adonian ethnicities in the city. The diversity in the Braavos demography is due to high scale immigration of people from various corners of the world during all of its history. The early settlers were refugees from Calibria. The diversity in the demography of Braavos the Great has led to a variety in its culture, food habits and attire. Its residents are referred to as Braavosi. After the first decades of the 20th century, foreigner immigration slowed down, but another phenomenon became more and more clear: the internal immigration. Attracted by the prosperity, millions of Sinopians (mostly from the eastern regions) migrated to the region of Braavos the Great, lacking education and other skills, the absolute majority ended up working in lower employments, such as civil construction. Braavos the Great had many of their skyscrapers built by the newcomers in the northwest of the region, in the city of Patras. Braavos the Great's population has grown rapidly. Following a long tradition, born in the city itself, Braavos' motto is "All gods are honored in Braavos". You can find many houses of worship of all the religions on Adonia. But most of the region still follow Sinope's traditional polytheistic religion, the faith of the Old Gods.
Braavos the Great is divided into 6 boroughs. The six boroughs — Braavos, Patras, Kalamaki, Athena, Sparta, and Lido — were consolidated into a single city in 1882. With an estimated 2013 population of 20,215,682 distributed over a land area of just 2,758 square kilometres, Braavos is one of the most densely populated major city in Adonia. As many as 800 languages are spoken in Braavos, making it the most linguistically diverse city in the world.
Braavos was not a Sinopian city-state or a Calibrian colony, but a secret refuge from Calibrian expansion. A seafaring city composed of many tiny islands, little is known of the birth of the city of Braavos. It is said that Braavos was founded by refugees from another civilization. They were led by the Sinopians and slaves, who settled in the lagoon in an effort to find a place safely away from what is suspected to be the Calibrians. For centuries it was called the Secret City and remained relatively unknown to the rest of the world. Calibrians were afraid of coming near it but tried many times to conquer it without success. Braavos was known for its Guild of assassins, the Faceless Men. The Calibrians used this guild's services many times and decided it would be better to make it an autonomous protectorate of the Calibrian Empire.
Braavos became known in Althena as the land of freedom and refuge. Populations continued to build on several islands of the lagoon, some of which become real cities. These various centres scattered dwellings eventually united and choose the Dogmo as the political center. Braavos started to become a real major urban centre in Althena. The first Doge is named in 205, by the leaders of the Calibrian Empire and Braavos becomes an official protectorate. The lagoon is gradually developing and experiencing economic prosperity. In 402, the Dogmo began to develop, welcome to political power and form a city that became Braavos. It was the first time the Doge was elected by the citizens. Facing its own problems, Calibria didn't bother about Braavos.
Braavos the Great is composed of six boroughs. Throughout the boroughs there are hundreds of distinct neighbourhoods, many with a definable history and character to call their own. If the boroughs were each independent cities, four of the boroughs (Patras, Kalamaki, Athena, and Sparta) would be among the ten most populous cities in Sinope.
Historically attractive to immigrants as well as (somewhat later) Sinopians from other regions, Athena is the most diverse borough of Braavos the Great. It is also the most underrated borough tourism-wise, often overshadowed by other places in the Sinopian capital such as Patras and Braavos. It is in fact a great place to explore, with its own idiosyncrasies, the exquisite way of living of its inhabitants, not to mention the world-class restaurants and diverse regional and international cuisine available to all tastes. If there is a major attraction to this borough, it is the excellent quality of its restaurants and the variety of cultural activities on display. Its unique multicultural feeling gives Athena the nickname of 2A, from Adonia, the name of the planet, representing all the cultural and ethnic differences of the borough, and Athena, the patron Goddess of the borough baring her name.
Braavos or also known as the Historical Braavos is sited on a group of 120 small islands separated by canals and linked by bridges. It is located in the marshy Braavosi Lagoon which stretches along the shoreline, between the mouths of the Patras and the Heracles Rivers. Braavos is renowned for the beauty of its setting, its architecture and its artworks. The borough in its entirety is listed as a World Heritage Site, along with its lagoon. In the old centre, the canals serve the function of roads, and almost every form of transport is on water or on foot. Beyond the road and rail land entrances at the northern edge of the city, transportation within the city remains (as it was in centuries past) entirely on water or on foot. Braavos is Althena's largest urban car-free area. Braavos is unique in Althena, in having remained a sizable functioning city in the 21st century entirely without motorcars or trucks. Braavos is a borough of small islands, enhanced during the Middle Ages by the dredging of soils to raise the marshy ground above the tides. The resulting canals encouraged the flourishing of a nautical culture which proved central to the economy of the region. Today those canals still provide the means for transport of goods and people within the region. The maze of canals threaded through the city requires the use of more than 400 bridges to permit the flow of foot traffic. Since the foundation of the Republic, Braavos has been the capital and seat of the Sinopian government with the Doge's palace in Poseidon Square. It is also home to several temples and landmarks.
Kalamki is the financial centre of the city and contains the headquarters of many major corporations and a number of important universities, and many cultural attractions. While incorrectly not considered as beautiful as some Sinopian cities, having been partly destroyed by Great Adonian War bomb raids, the city has rebuilt itself into a thriving cosmopolitan business capital. In essence, for a tourist, what makes Kalamki interesting compared to other places in Braavos the Great is that the borough is truly more about the lifestyle of enjoying worldly pleasures: a paradise for shopping, football, opera, and nightlife.
If you are staying in Braavos and wish to avoid the more touristy and expensive areas, along with the accompanying noise, Lido is an under-appreciated gem. Trendier and more residential than historical Braavos, it still offers small canals, a variety of dining and impressive views of the historical city from across the Lagoon. At times it feels reminiscent of Palm Beach, Shayden, with its upscale homes, historic architecture and its easy, island feel. Around 5 p.m. the atmosphere is decidedly local as professionally dressed Lido residents funnel back home from work across the lagoon. Many of the local bars and eateries have that "where everybody knows your name" family feel, lending an insider's view to life on Lido. Residents embrace, chat enthusiastically and watch each other's children. Lido is the beach of Braavos. This island shelters the lagoon from the Braavosi Bay, and is famous for its Movie Festival which is held every year between the end of August and the first week of September. It is the most important beach in Sinope, due to its aristocratic atmosphere.
Patras enchants travelers with its white bleached limestone buildings, intimate alleyways, and an easy going charm that makes it a popular year round destination. The borough stretches along the northern bank of the Braavosi Lagoon. As the terrain rises north away from the water, steep streets and stairways form the old tangled neighbourhoods or give way to green parks in the western suburbs. On downtown, the vast commercial plaza, facing the river at the base of the pedestrianised grid of the lower town, occupies a central position. Further northwest from the lower town stretches Patras' "Main Street", a broad boulevard resplendent in leafy trees, chic hotels and upscale shops, terminating at the circular Syntagma Square (Square of the Constitution). To the east are old neighbourhoods of Monastiraki and Attica, both relatively spared during the Great Earthquake (as they are on a firmer rock) and therefore both retaining the charm of the winding alleys and crumbling walls (further north lie relatively boring residential quarters). To the west the hill rises steeply into the upper town.
While it's not a famous tourist destination like Patras or Braavos, the setting is pleasant, with the Spartacus River flowing through the city, the genteel hills overlooking the borough and scattered with pleasant villas and surrounded by the Rhodope ranges off in the distance. This is one of the reasons why the famous Etruscan architect Le Corbusier defined Braavos the Great as "the city with the most beautiful natural location in the world". Sparta is an important borough of technology and industry, and the Hyundai automobile company is based here. It was also the birthplace to many important cultural and political movements in Sinope. Sparta inhabitants are well known across Sinope for their understatement and composure and the borough reflects this attitude. Many people consider Sparta the Althenan capital of Baroque: many palaces and churches were built in this style during the 17th century. It isn't the typical Sinopian city, with red and yellow buildings: is a bit more Calibrian, so much that is also called "the little Cecina"; wide boulevards with white buildings make the city center more similar to Cecina. Around the city, a crown of churches and castles, some up on a hilltop, some lost in a park, provide plenty of interesting views. Sparta also has an aristocratic atmosphere - the centre is filled with posh 19th century cafes, regal-like arcaded mansions, debonair glittering restaurants, and grand temples.
The Braavos region is the wealthiest region in Sinope and it is well above the Alcadean Union's GDP per capita average – it produces 45% of the Sinopian GDP. Braavos's economy is based primarily on the tertiary sector. Most of the headquarters of multinationals operating in Sinope are concentrated in the region, specially in the Kalamaki borough. The region is heavily industrialized, especially the borough of Sparta.
The city is also an important manufacturing centre, especially for the automotive industry, with Sinopian companies such as Hyundai and Kia Motors having a significant presence in the city. Other important products made in Braavos include chemicals, machinery, pharmaceuticals and plastics. Other key sectors in the city's economy are advanced research in health and biotechnologies, chemicals and engineering, banking and finance. Braavos is the home to Sinope's main banking and financial groups (300 companies) and over sixty foreign banks.
Along with professional services, media companies are concentrated in Braavos and the media distribution industry is Braavos's third most competitive sector. Many national newspapers are edited in Braavos. The Port of Sparta is the largest in Sinope, the fourth largest container port in the world, handling 22.94 million TEUs in 2013, and the 15th busiest port by cargo tonnage with 211,000 kilotons in 2013. It is the second largest port in Western Althena after ??? in Batavia.
Braavos is one of the most important tourist destinations in the world for its celebrated art and architecture. In 2012, it was the world's 4th most internationally visited city, with 12.95 million international arrivals that year. It is regarded as one of the world's most beautiful cities. Tourism has been a major sector of Braavosi industry since the 18th century, when it was a major center for the Grand Tour, with its beautiful cityscape, uniqueness, and rich musical and artistic cultural heritage. In the 19th century, it became a fashionable centre for the rich and famous, often staying or dining at luxury establishment. It continued being a fashionable city in vogue right into the early 20th century. Throughout its history, the Carnival of Braavos has been attended by Western Althena's nobility. The city has become a major centre of international conferences and festivals, such as the prestigious Braavos Film Festival, which attract visitors from all over the world for their theatrical, cultural, cinematic, artistic, and musical productions. Today, there are numerous attractions in Braavos, such as Poseidon's Palace, the Grand Canal, and the Poseidon Square. The Lido borough is also a popular international luxury destination, attracting thousands of actors, critics, celebrities, and mainly people in the cinematic industry.
Braavos the Great is one of Central Althena key transport nodes and Sinope's most important railway, road and air hubs. Its five major railway stations, among which the Braavos Central station, are all Sinope's busiest. The Braavos the Great Transit (BGT) operates within the metropolitan area, managing a public transport network consisting of an underground rapid transit network, the Braavos Metro (??aaß?s Met??), and tram, trolley-bus and bus lines. Overall the network covers nearly 4,000 km reaching 126 municipalities. Besides public transport, BGT manages the interchange parking lots and other transportation services including bike sharing and car sharing systems. Braavos Metro is the rapid transit system serving the city, with 9 lines and a total length of more than 200 km. The recently opened M9 line is undergoing further expansion. The Braavos suburban railway service comprises many lines and connects Braavos the Great with the historical city through the Braavos causeway rail line. Commonly referred to as "a????µ???? d??µ??", it has a train running every 5 minutes. The city tram network consists of approximately 160 km of track and 17 lines. Bus lines cover over 1,570 km (665 mi). Braavos the Great has also taxi services operated by private companies and licensed by the Regional council of Braavos the Great. The region is also a key node for the national road network, being served by all the major highways of Southern Sinope.
Braavos the Great is served by four international airports, combining an important airport system. In total, the airport system of Braavos the Great counted 80 million passengers in 2013.
Braavos-Diagoras International Airport, the busiest in Sinope (about 40 million passengers in 2013), is 28 km east of the city of Braavos. It handles only international traffic. Most of the airport's facilities are located in the area between the two runways. The approach road and railway divide the west part into a southern half, which contains cargo and maintenance facilities, and a northern half, which contains mostly administrative buildings, a holiday long-term parking lot and the Visitors' Centre. It is followed by the west apron and Terminal 1, then the Diagoras Airport Center (MAC), Terminal 2 and the east apron. The airport is the primary hub and maintenance base for Iberia. Consequently, Iberia is responsible for more than 60 percent of Diagoras' traffic. The busiest continental route from Braavos-Diagoras is to Theodosia with over 2 million passengers in 2013. The busiest intercontinental route is to Kurtilifa with 1.2 million passengers in 2013.
Diagoras Airport is connected to the cities by Braavos the Great commuter railway lines K1, K4 and K8. The ride takes approximately 45 minutes to the Braavos station in the historical city, passing on the Liberty Bridge causeway. The ride to Patras takes 35 mins while the ride to Kalamaki takes 30 mins. A scheduled bus service connects the airport within 15 minutes to the Diagoras OSE railway station, providing access to regional high speed trains on the Braavos eastern lines. Diagoras Airport Station is located in a tunnel beneath the central area. A second station connects the cargo and maintenance areas, long-term parking and the administrative buildings.
Diagoras Airport is accessible via nearby Motorway A90, which connects to Motorway A9. SR2584 connects A90's exit 6 - an incomplete interchange that can only be used by traffic to and from the west - to the terminals. Access from the east is possible via exit 8 and SR2580, which connects to SR2584 in the east of the airport.
Braavos-Dardanus Airport, which lies in the borough of Patras, is mainly used for domestic and short-haul international flights, and served over 18 million passengers in 2013. The busiest route from Braavos-Dardanus is to Lyr with 4 million passengers annually, followed by Tyr with 2.5 million. A metro station, part of the Braavos metro network, connects the airport to the centre of the borough of Patras.
Braavos-Brontinus Airport is located 40 kilometres (25 mi) northwest of central Kalamaki. The airport was the 4th busiest airport in Sinope in terms of passengers, handling 17,947,808 passengers in 2013 and is serving as a hub for long-haul flights and low cost carriers. CityJet has a dedicated Terminal (T2) and Braavos-Brontinus is the company's only focus city in Sinope. The airport has two terminals and a third runway has been announced, with construction to commence in 2014 and finish in 2017. There is also a dedicated cargo terminal called "CargoCity", which currently handles over 450,000 tons of yearly traffic.
Brontinus Airport railway station is linked to Kalamaki Kadorna Station (connection with Braavos metro's Line M2 (Green) and Line M1 (Red), and the Commuter Railway Service) by the Brontinus Express. It arrives at the Terminal 1, an additional bus travel is required to reach Terminal 2. Journey time is 29 minutes. Brontinus Airport is connected by a four-lane highway to the A8 motorway and by a five-lane highway to the A4 motorway.
Braavos-Dorne Airport, which lies in the borough of Braavos, is located in the south of the Doge's palace on the island of Dorne. It served over 4 million passengers in 2013. The airport is located on the Dorne Islands, south-west of the Poseidon Square. The airport has one main east-west runway, two shorter runways, and a seaplane base. The airport is used for regional airline service and for general aviation, including medical emergency flights (due to its proximity to downtown hospitals), small charter flights, and private aviation. The airport's hours of operation are 6:45 am to 11:00 pm.
Although expansion of the airport was and is politically controversial, the Braavos Transport Authority (BTA) has worked with new regional airline Porter Airlines since 2003 to increase scheduled carrier flights. Under the new financial model, carriers pay landing fees and departing passengers pay airport improvement fees to the BTA. Porter launched in 2006 and passenger volumes increased to the point that airport operations became self-sufficient by 2010. In 2011, Porter opened a new terminal. In 2012, Porter has proposed extending the airport runways and modifying the operating agreement to allow it to use Aeolus S100 jets at the airport. The proposal was accepted by the authorities.
The only public access to the airport from the mainland and the neighbouring islands is by the BTA operated ferry lines. The ferries, which transports passengers freely, operates from Patras, Lido and Poseidon Square to the airport dock every 10 minutes from 5:00 am to midnight (the 5:00 ferry is for airport staff, airline passengers can begin crossing at 5:15).
Twin towns and sister cities