The world is truly a remarkable place. And with the vast means of transportation – and seamless communication – we have available to us, it keeps getting easier to explore. Here’s a collection of some of the most breathtakingly beautiful and unique natural destinations that beg to be experienced.
Pamukkale, meaning “cotton castle,” is an area of Turkey that owes its white landscape to a high concentration of calcite in the water. The area is covered in these natural hot springs, of which there are 17, all heated by an underground volcano.
This Colombian river can only be reached by donkey, horse, or by foot, but it is certainly worth it, as the crystal clear water is surrounded by algae that has formed into a kaleidoscope of colors.
Where better to start than right here in the United States? Yellowstone is the oldest national park in the country, and has many amazing natural sights to see, the most awe-inspiring of which is the Old Faithful geyser.
Old Faithful is not the tallest or largest geyser, but it is the most popular because of its high frequency of eruptions.
(If you would like to stay inside the park, the Old Faithful Inn is an experience in itself, in large part thanks to its spectacular lobby.)
Vale Da Lua, meaning “valley of the moon,” is an intriguing natural stone basin that has been carved by the San Miguel River. It has some of the oldest rock formations in the world, as well as caves, grottoes and waterfalls.
Lake Retba, Senegal
It may be hard to believe, but this picture has actually not been altered in any way.
Lake Retba in Senegal is filled with pink water, thanks to cyanobacteria , which is completely harmless.
What is more, the lake has a very high salt content that allows visitors to float effortlessly on the water.
A hidden treasure in the Scottish highlands, the fairy pools are a refreshing sight to see and are located in the Isle of Skye.
They are part of a stream running off of the Cuillin mountains, full of vividly colored pools of often almost still water, punctuated by cascading waterfalls.
This photograph was taken in May, when the water had melted enough to reveal a beautiful path of green pebbles underneath.
These caves in Patagonia, Chile, can be explored by small boat or kayak after a long drive on dirt roads from the city of Coyhaique. If you do make the effort, you will be rewarded with this amazing vista.
You could visit just about anywhere in Hawaii and be stunned by the ineffable beauty of the natural landscape. But one particular highlight is the Na Pali Coast.
England is full of stunning landscapes, but perhaps none more so than the Lake District. Visit here and you might just feel as though you have been dropped right into a romantic novel.
You might never see as much pink in one place as you will at this hillside in Hokkaido, Japan.
Every year, from early May to mid June, the hill is covered with a pink carpet of Moss Phlox flowers, commonly known as shibazakura.
Winding paths lead visitors from the base of the hill to the very top where they are treated to a magnificent view of the surrounding sea of flowers.
Vincent Stokes is an outdoor enthusiast and an experienced world traveler. He also writes for the National Parks and works to promote pride in homegrown travel destinations. You can also connect with Vincent on G+ or twitter (@TravelingGlobal).