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Welcome to the Instagram blog! See how Instagrammers are capturing and sharing the world's moments through photo and video features, user spotlights, tips and news from Instagram HQ.

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photography, art, narni, landscape, italy, umbria, Location Feature, instagram, narnia, cs lewis, chronicles of narnia,

A World of Childhood Fantasy in Narni, Italy

For more enchanting photos and videos from Narni, Italy, explore the Narni location page and browse the #Narni hashtag.

There are stunning similarities between the real-life town of Narni and the fictional world of Narnia: blazing green hills, clear blue skies and picturesque stone structures.

In fact, the classic fantasy series The Chronicles of Narnia, written by C.S. Lewis in 1950, is rumored to have been inspired by this small Italian town 50 miles north of Rome. According to biographer Walter Hooper, Lewis was fascinated by ancient history, and Narni—named “Narnia” in Roman times—was highlighted by the children’s author in his personal atlas.

Whether Lewis visited Narni has never been confirmed, but even today, its cobblestone streets and castle fortress look like they belong in a magical, medieval novel. And while there are no mythical, talking creatures roaming the land, Narni still feels like a place pulled straight out of our childhood imaginations.

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Photography, Instagram, Location Feature, ossetia, russia, itsbaat, User Feature, landscape,

Exploring North Ossetia with @itsbaaat

For more photos and videos throughout North Ossetia, follow @itsbaaat and browse #exploringossetia hashtag on Instagram.

“I do not post just beautiful photos of nature,” Russia Instagrammer Batraz Butaev (@itsbaaat) explains of his love for the inspiring natural beauty of the North Ossetia region. “I share my memories of the most important moments spent with my friends in my favorite places, such as the snow-covered mountains, deep forests, mountain roads and waterfalls.” Following Baltraz’s lead, the local Instagram community uses the #exploringossetia hashtag to share their own picturesque photos of the area. As he explains, “I wanted to have a common gallery with my friends, showing how beautiful nature is in the North Ossetia region.”

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Photography, landscape, history, Architecture, maryland, thomas point shoal lighthouse, national lighthouse day, lighthouse, chesapeake bay, Location Feature, Instagram,

Keeping Watch above the Waves at the Thomas Point Shoal Lighthouse

For more photos and videos from the lighthouse, explore the Thomas Point Lighthouse and Thomas Point Lighthouse, Chesapeake Bay location pages.

Off the coast of Maryland, the Thomas Point Shoal lighthouse has kept watch over the waters of Chesapeake Bay for nearly 140 years.

Unlike traditional tower lighthouses, the Thomas Point beacon stands a mile and a half (2.4 kilometers) off the shore atop a stilt-like series of metal rods, or screwpiles, that anchor directly into the sandbank. While all other screwpile lighthouses in the nation have either fallen to winter ice floes or been relocated, the Thomas Point lighthouse has survived in its original location, earning it the designation of a National Historic Landmark.

Up until 1986, a succession of men lived in and kept watch from the small six-sided Victorian cottage above the waves, lighting the oil lamp behind the crystal lens and hand-winding the fog bell. Nowadays, the Baltimore Coast Guard maintains the lighthouse from afar, and an automated foghorn and solar-powered lens have taken the place of their human-powered predecessors.

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Photography, science, landscape, nature, travel, new zealand, tasman glacier, glacier, Location Feature, Instagram,

Exploring New Zealand’s Haupapa/Tasman Glacier

For more photos and videos of the glacier, explore the Tasman Glacier and Tasman Glacier Trail location pages and browse the #TasmanGlacier hashtag.

Located between two of New Zealand’s highest peaks, Aoraki/Mount Cook and Rarakiroa/Mount Tasman, the Haupapa/Tasman Glacier is a huge river of ice that covers 101 square kilometers (39 square miles) and reaches 600 meters (2,000 feet) in depth. As the longest glacier found in the country, it extends 27 kilometers (17 miles) along the borders of Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park in New Zealand’s South Island.

The area receives a massive amount of snow in the winter, which melts southward into Lake Tasman by summertime. As the ice melts on the surface of the glacier, piles of stones and rocks from within are left on the top, creating what appears to be a vast plain of rubble. Although the layer of debris drastically alters the glacial landscape, it actually helps preserve the ice beneath and slows down the glacier’s retreat—and the dynamic environment attracts many ambitious hikers and climbers all year round.

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Photography, Black and White, mountain climbing, mountaineering, scotland, User Feature, Instagram, edinburgh, Ruairidh McGlynn, landscape,

Mountaineering the Scottish Highlands with @ruairidhmcglynn

To view more photos and videos from Ruairidh’s mountaineering explorations of the Highlands, follow @ruairidhmcglynn on Instagram.

"In early 2013, my brother asked me if I’d like to climb a Munro in Scotland called Schiehallion (which is famous for its distinct conical shape). I took my brother up on his offer,” says Edinburgh Instagrammer Ruairidh McGlynn (@ruairidhmcglynn), of his first mountaineering experiences in the Scottish Highlands. “At 6:00AM on a typically dreich (dull and miserable) day in January, we embarked upon the journey from Edinburgh. The summit was shrouded in cloud so there was disappointment from the seasoned veterans over the lack of view. But to me that didn’t matter because it was about this great journey and story that I’d just captured. From that moment on, I was hooked.”

Ruairidh posted an image from that trip to Instagram. Now, having invested in proper equipment and conquering 40 of the 282 of Scotland’s Munros (mountains of more than 3,000 feet or 914.4 meters), he pushes himself to capture each journey to share it with others. “Instagram is the perfect tool that allows me to convey to others the beauty of the mountains,” he explains, “the journeys that I go on and the things that you can achieve when you put your mind to it. I hope to inspire people to appreciate the outdoors and to embark upon similar adventures (responsibly and safely).”

As for photo tips to share, Ruairidh adds, “Where possible, I always like to include people to give a sense of scale and adventure balanced with dramatic weather and light, which more often than not is never far away in Scotland.”

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Photography, Art, Artists on Tumblr, landscape, rockaways, klaus biesenbach, moma ps1, Art Thursday, New York City, Instagram,

Art and Resilience in the Rockaways

For more photos and videos of the Rockaway! show, follow @klausbiesenbach on Instagram and explore the #rockaway1 hashtag.

At the forefront of ongoing Hurricane Sandy recovery efforts near some of the best beaches in New York City, the art festival Rockaway! is underway until September 1. Curated by Klaus Biesenbach (@klausbiesenbach), the show features works by artists including Adrián Villar Rojas, Patti Smith and Janet Cardiff installed in settings as various as a former automotive warehouse, a military chapel and even the beach itself. “One minute you’re digging your toes in the sand,” Instagrammer Oscar Diaz (@oscmdiaz) says of the show. “The next thing you know, you’re reading Walt Whitman’s poetry engraved on large granite stones.”

Pari Ehsan (@paridust), whose photos combine fashion and art also visited the Rockaways to see the show. “What really struck me is Klaus’s description of the inspiration behind Patti Smith’s The Resilience of the Dreamer,” she says. “After seeing an overwhelming heap of mattresses waiting to be discarded after Hurricane Sandy, the idea of this delicate gilded four-poster bed juxtaposed against a raw dilapidated space is a beautiful symbol of fragility and resilience.”

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art, landscape, photography, hashtag highlight, user feature, instagram,

Seeking Inspiration Midair with @manonwethly

To see more of Manon’s artfully captured images of #flyingstuff, follow @manonwethly.

For Dutch designer Manon Wethlij (@manonwethly), the contents of her arresting #flyingstuff photos are less important than the conversations they provoke. “People are free to see or feel whatever they want in the shapes,” Manon says. “I love that they make people talk to me and ask questions.”

“I studied architecture for two years, then graphic design, but the thing that has always made me happy is photography.” When she found Instagram, Manon says, “it was exactly what I needed to keep my photography enthusiasm alive. I was taking lots of photos every day and just storing them in my computer for no one to see.”

These days, it’s the response to her photos on Instagram that keeps Manon evolving creatively. “Everybody’s enthusiasm encourages me to try new things,” she explains, “It’s sort of addictive.”

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photography, Architecture, landscape, travel, singapore, reflections, street photography, local lens, user feature, instagram,

Local Lens: Reflections of Singapore’s Changing Cityscape

To see more of Singapore’s diverse architecture through the lens of a local, follow @_yafiqyusman_ on Instagram.

“The places I can go are limited,” says Instagrammer Yafiq Yusman (@_yafiqyusman_) of his tiny island-nation home of Singapore, “but the photo possibilities are limitless.”

Yafiq, who studied architecture in college, enjoys capturing Singapore’s rapidly evolving urban landscape through puddles left by the city’s tropical climate. “Singapore is a modernized country, but there are still places where you can see the olden days,” says Yafiq. “The alleys in Little India, China Town and Boat Quay are a few of my favorite spots and great for puddle shots.”

For more modern photo opportunities, Yafiq favors Raffles Place, a square surrounded by the city’s tallest buildings. And for those seeking respite from Singapore’s fast-paced metropolis, he suggests tracking down a hidden reserve called Punggol Beach. “The best time to visit is during the sunset. It’s beautiful.”

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Architecture, landscape, portrait, local lens, singapore, user feature, photography, instagram,

Local Lens: Venturing off the Beaten Path in Singapore with @m_herwin

In this series, local Instagrammers show you their favorite places to shoot around where they live. To find refuge from Singapore’s busy city life, follow @m_herwin on Instagram.

"There is more to Singapore than those big, tall buildings that you see in travel pamphlets," says local Instagrammer Herwin van Johari (@m_herwin), who seeks out the quiet sanctuaries nestled in one of the most densely populated cities in the world.

For visiting nature enthusiasts, Herwin suggests a visit to the Southern Ridges, a 10-kilometer (6.2-mile) trail that connects five of the city’s public parks. “The trail offers many vantage points that give you an amazing view of the city from some of the highest points in Singapore.” Other lush, photogenic escapes favored by Herwin include the Singapore Botanic Garden and MacRitchie Reservoir.

"If you are adventurous enough to explore further from the main island," says Herwin, "take a short boat trip to Pulau Ubin. Singapore is preserved in its rustic form here, and it’s a complete break away from the modern city.”

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photography, animals, landscape, scotland, highland cow, murn cameron, farm, User Feature, Instagram,

Face to Face with Scotland’s Shaggy Highland Cows

For more photos and videos of Scotland’s shaggy cattle, follow @murn_eilidh_kate and browse the #highlandcow and #highlandcoo hashtags.

Long-horned and remarkably shaggy cattle graze throughout the rolling hills of the Scottish countryside, capturing the hearts of visiting and local Instagrammers alike. Officially called the Highland cow, the breed is also known by its name in the Scots language, kyloe, and by the affectionate name of Highland “coo” for its pronunciation in the Scottish accent.

The cows are more than just a shaggy coat with horns for 17-year-old Scotland Instagrammer Murn Cameron (@murn_eilidh_kate), who works with her family on the Dunach Estate farm near Oban. “The cattle are really inquisitive and curious about humans, and they want to interact with us,” she explains. “They all have different personalities a bit like humans. The calves are very cheeky—and adorable.”

Murn takes her phone with her into the fields, capturing the cattle in all their different colors. “I have a soft spot for the red ones myself,” she says. “People joke and say it is because of the similar hair color as I am ginger, and I must say they may have a point!”