It’s hard to believe that all these incredibly gorgeous and unique places really do exist. The pictures you are about to see have not been altered in Photoshop, and you can actually visit these places. It’s true what they say: seeing is believing, so prepare those peepers! Here are 9 little-known stunning natural wonders!
1. Wai-o-Tapu, New Zealand
Ever dreamed of a bath with champagne? In the geothermal region of Waiotapu on the North Island there is more than just a bathtub, but a whole pool! Although, you can’t swim in it. After all, the so-called “Champagne Pool” is actually a thermal spring, the surface temperature of which ranges from 75 to 260 degrees. Maori considered the waters to be magical; this place in their language is called – Wai-O-Tapu, “Sacred Waters”.
2. Valle De La Luna, Chile
Valle de la Luna is an unusual area in the Atacama Desert in northern Chile, 15 kilometers from the town of San Pedro de Atacama. The valley is famous for its huge salt plateau, in which amazing shapes were formed under the influence of erosion. Each sculpture has a name and a legend associated with it. The indigenous inhabitants of the Atacama Desert, believe that these sculptures are the guides for the souls of the deceased. They also help shamans in their rites when traveling to the world of the ancestors.
3. Erg Chebbi, Morocco
Erg is a territory covered with huge sand dunes. Erg Chebbi is the only erg located in the Sahara in the South-East of Morocco. The height of the dunes in this area is about 150 meters, they are a very beautiful orange color and are quite popular among tourists. Erg Chebbi is in the middle of a stony desert, and its sands are in constant motion. In addition to the fact that these stunning, wind-carved sand dunes take you to another world, they are said to have a healing power, so the Moroccans visit these places every year to bury into the hot sand up to their very necks.
4. Pantanal, Brazil
In the heart of the South American continent, south of the Amazon Basin and east of the Andes, lies a huge, landlocked river delta called the Pantanal, covering an area of approximately 140,000 – 195,000 square kilometers. Annual floods turn this area into the largest freshwater marsh ecosystem in the world, the size of half of France.
5. Tsingy De Bemaraha, Madagascar
The Madagascar National Park Tsingy de Bemaraha is one of the strangest and most fascinating places on the planet that you can imagine. Sometimes it seems as if it is a nightmare mirage, born in the inflamed brain of a mentally ill person, while in fact, this is just a karst forest. These stone spears can reach 120 m in height and vary in thickness from 3 to 5 meters. Despite its frightening and uninhabited appearance, the stone jungle is inhabited by hundreds of species of animals and plants, some of which are not found anywhere else on earth.
6. The Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania
Safari in Ngorongoro is one of the most memorable safari experiences in the world. It’s basically the same tourist brand as the Eiffel Tower, Tower Bridge or the Statue of Liberty. The animals here are pretty much everywhere, and they do not need to be looked after like in many other national parks. Here antelopes, lions, zebras, and gazelles surround you from all sides trying to share some love with you. This tight eco-system formed in the crater of an ancient volcano, and the animals almost never leave this place. In fact, this is actually a giant natural zoo, if you think about it!
7. Yangshuo County, China
Yangshuo is a small and very beautiful village located in Guilin Province. It’s the predecessor to the national park Zhangjiajie, which was forever immortalized by James Cameron in his movie “Avatar.” Translated from Chinese, Yangshuo means “Bright Moon”. For a long time this place remained unknown to the world. However, in the 1980s, information about Yangshuo reached European and American travel guides, and slow rural life began to swirl from the flow of backpackers. Now it is completely changed to accommodate the tourists: small hotels and guest-houses with slow wi-fi, as well as restaurants with European or Chinese cuisine.
8. Hamilton Pool Preserve, Texas, USA
One of the most unusual and picturesque lakes in the world – Hamilton Pool is located just 37 km west of Austin (Texas, USA). What’s really remarkable about it is the fact that Hamilton Pool is both an underground lake and a ground lake, emerging to the surface from under the arch of a stone grotto. That 15-meter waterfall is just an icing on the cake.
9. Great Blue Hole, Belize
Blue Holes are a fairly common phenomenon, but one of them stands out for its huge size. The Great Blue Hole is located in the center of the atoll called the Lighthouse Reef and is the most popular destination for divers near the coast of Belize. The hole is 300 meters in diameter and goes 120 meters deep. The roof of the cave collapsed 10,000 years ago, when the sea level was much lower. When the ocean began to rise the cave was flooded, the roof collapsed, and voila – the big Blue Hole!