National Geographic. The World’s Most Beautiful Places 100 Unforgettable Destinations Pages 1-50 — Flip PDF Download
Stunning landscapes Breathtaking vistas Awe-inspiring getaways The bWeorlda’sMpoustltaifcuels 100 Unforgettable Destinations Lake Pehoe in Torres del Paine National Park, Patagonia, Chile
The bWeorlda’sMpuostltaifcuels 100 unforgettable destinations WASHINGTON, D. C.
Page 1: The setting sun lights the walls at Toroweap Point on the rim of the Grand Canyon. Pages 2–3: The Shwesandaw Pagoda temple at sunrise in Bagan. This page: A beachcomber strolls across the sands at Frégate Island in the Seychelles.
contents World Map 6 peaks & valleys 8 1–25 Verdant hills, jagged peaks, mist-shrouded jungles, rippling grasslands, rocky moors, and undulating landscapes majestic enough to steal your breath away rivers & shores 38 26–50 Magniﬁcent landmarks and worlds shaped by water, from bright coral reefs and white-sand shorelines to twisting rivers and glistening fjords cities & beyond 68 51–75 Structures and foundations so beautiful it’s hard to believe that we created them: spectacular cities, architectural gems, and remnants of great civilizations past stark & wild 98 76–100 Vistas of shimmering heat and sparkling ice, strange shapes, and sharp con- trasts sure to inﬂame your imagination and inspire the adventurous spirit Illustrations Credits 128
peaks & valleys Arctic 1 Saguaro National Park, Southern Arizona (U. S.), p. 8 2 Redwood National Park, Northern California (U.S.), p. 10 3 Chiang Mai Province, Northern Thailand, p. 12 4 Masai Mara National Reserve, Southwestern Kenya, p. 14 5 Torres del Paine, Patagonia, Chile, p. 16 91 6 Tuscany, Central Italy, p. 18 7 Olympic National Park, Olympic Peninsula, Washington (U.S.), p. 20 9 8 Yosemite National Park, Eastern California (U.S.), p. 22 9 Mount McKinley, Denali National Park, Alaska (U.S.), p. 24 ARCTIC CIRCLE 10 Jeju Island, South Korea, p. 26 11 Taktshang Monastery, Bhutan, p. 26 82 19 12 Bryce Canyon, Southwestern Utah (U.S.), p. 26 16 24 57 13 Lauterbrunnen, Switzerland, p. 27 14 Alpine National Park, Victoria, Australia, p. 27 37 47 32 15 Glacier National Park, Northern Montana (U.S.), p. 27 7 15 70 54 16 Jasper National Park, Alberta (CANADA), p. 28 50 N O R T H 42 17 64 E 17 Killarney, County Kerry, Ireland, p. 30 93 29 87 78 75 18 Annapurna Sanctuary, Nepal, p. 32 2 22 13 19 Jotunheimen National Park, Besseggen, Norway, p. 34 8 59 34 85 72 20 Munnar, Western Ghats, India, p. 34 12 74 100 21 Cradle Mountain National Park, Tasmania, Australia, p. 34 90 88 A M E R I C A 55 67 22 Autumn in New England, Vermont (U. S.), p. 35 23 Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park, New Zealand, p. 35 1 56 24 The Highlands, Scotland (U.K.), p. 35 49 25 Bali Rain Forest, Bali, Indonesia, p. 36 c 97 i 28 89 30 t TROPIC OF CANCER 58 n a 39 l t The AF A bWeorlda’sMpuostltaifcuels 81 EQUATOR 45 Paciﬁc 35 Ocean TROPIC OF CAPRICORN Ocean rivers & shores SOUTH 53 A M E R I C A 26 Great Barrier Reef, Queensland, Australia, p. 38 27 Guilin, Guangxi, China, p. 41 80 28 Na Pali Coast, Kauai, Hawaii (U.S.), p. 42 29 Crater Lake, Klamath, Oregon (U.S.), p. 44 43 30 The Everglades, Southern Florida (U.S.), p. 46 31 Plitvice Lakes, Croatia, p. 48 map key 32 Clifs of Moher, County Clare, Ireland, p. 50 33 Zanzibar, Tanzania, p. 52 peaks & valleys 34 Big Sur, Coastal California (U.S.), p. 54 rivers & shores 35 The Amazon River, South America, p. 56 cities & beyond 36 Bays of Fires, Eastern Tasmania, Australia, p. 56 stark & wild 37 Loch Katrine, Stirling, Scotland (U.K.), p. 56 38 Milford Sound, Fiordland, New Zealand, p. 57 5 39 Great Blue Hole, Belize, p. 57 40 Okavango Delta, Botswana, p. 57 ANTARCTIC CIRCLE 41 Seychelles, Africa, p. 58 42 Newfoundland, Eastern Canada, p. 60 A N TA R C T I C A 43 Iguaçu National Park, Paraná, Brazil, p. 62 44 Lofoten Islands, Northern Norway, p. 64 45 Tahiti, French Polynesia (France), p. 64 46 Kaikoura, Canterbury, New Zealand, p. 64 47 The Lake District, England (U.K.), p. 65 48 Cathedral Cove, Coromandel Peninsula, New Zealand, p. 65 49 Okefenokee Swamp, Southern Georgia (U.S.), p. 65 50 Cannon Beach, Coastal Oregon (U. S.), p. 66
Ocean cities & beyond 44 76 51 Neuschwanstein Castle, Bavaria, Germany, p. 68 52 Rome, Italy, p. 70 62 61 A 53 Machu Picchu, Peru, p. 72 I 54 Oxford, England (U.K.), p. 74 OP E S 95 55 Sintra, Portugal, p. 76 56 Savannah, Georgia (U. S.), p. 78 UR 68 A 63 57 Bergen, Western Norway, p. 78 98 99 58 Chichén Itzá, Yucatán, Mexico, p. 78 51 65 96 59 New York City, New York (U.S.), p. 79 11 60 Kyoto, Japan, p. 79 6 31 18 61 Rostov Veliky, Russia, p. 79 52 62 Saint Petersburg, Russia, p. 80 66 3 63 The Great Wall of China, China, p. 82 71 64 London, England (U.K.), p. 84 69 20 65 Santorini, Greece, p. 86 66 Bagan, Myanmar, p. 88 94 67 Seville, Andalusia, Spain, p. 90 68 Istanbul, Turkey, p. 92 69 Pyramids of Giza, Egypt, p. 94 70 Amsterdam, The Netherlands, p. 94 60 71 Petra, Ma’an, Jordan, p. 94 72 Washington, District of Columbia (U.S.), p. 95 10 73 Cape Town, South Africa, p. 95 74 Mesa Verde, Colorado (U.S.), p. 95 75 Paris, France, p. 96 27 Paciﬁc Ocean 83 RICA 4 41 33 40 Indian 25 84 Ocean 77 26 73 stark & wild AUSTRALIA 79 92 76 Artic Circle, Sweden (Kiruna, Lapland), p. 98 77 Devils Marbles, Outback Australia, p. 100 78 Badlands National Park, South Dakota (U.S.), p. 102 14 79 Ice sheets, Antarctica (ice ﬂow on the Southern Ocean), p. 104 48 80 Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia, p. 106 21 86 81 Galápagos Islands (Ecuador), South America, p. 108 36 46 82 Landmannalaugar, Southern Iceland, p. 108 23 2000 km 83 Chocolate Hills, Bohol Island, Philippines, p. 108 38 84 Sossusvlei Dunes, Namibia, Africa (Namib Naukluft National Park), p. 109 0 0 85 Racetrack Playa, Death Valley, California (U.S.), p. 109 86 Emerald Lakes, Tongariro National Park, New Zealand, p. 109 87 Grand Prismatic Spring, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming (U.S.), p. 110 88 Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona (Wotan’s Throne on the north rim) (U.S.), p. 112 89 Haleakala Crater, Maui, Hawaii (U.S.), p. 114 90 Mojave Desert, (U.S.), p. 116 91 Northwest Passage, Canada, p. 118 92 The Pinnacles, Cervantes, Australia (Nambung National Park), p. 118 2000 mi 93 Oregon Lava Fields, Oregon (U.S.), p. 118 94 Simien Mountain National Park, Ethiopia, p. 119 95 Lake Baikal, Siberia, Russia, p. 119 96 Socotra, Yemen, p. 119 97 Sahara Desert, Africa (Erg Chebbi, Maroc), p. 120 98 Mineral Forest, Pamukkale, Turkey, p. 122 99 K2, Karakoram Range, China/Pakistan, p. 124 100 The Prairies, Midwestern U.S. (Flint Hills), p. 126 7
1 saguaro national park SOUTHERN ARIZONA The sun sets, shadows lengthen, and on the horizon the Tucson and Rincon Mountains glow orange-pink in the gathering dusk. One of the iconic images of the American West then slowly emerges as hundreds of saguaro cacti— North America’s largest cactus—take on their unmistak- able silhouettes against the darkening sky. Saguaro cacti near Tucson: The cacti grow naturally only in the Sonoran Desert and can reach heights of 60 feet and live for up to 150 years.
“Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop of like autumn leaves.” John Muir in the collection of unique and iconic places The spaces between the realms of peak and contained within these pages, the notion that valley ofer up resplendent landscapes of inﬁnite beauty is in the eye of the beholder is disproved. variety, from the verdant rain forests of Bali and We may experience diferent feelings as we wildﬂower meadows of Montana’s Glacier National stand before the Grand Canyon, Machu Picchu, Park to the glittering turquoise lakes of Patagonia’s or Rome’s eternal ruins, but some strand links high plateaus and New England’s dulcet hills and them and their power to inspire. Sometimes villages, whose blaze of autumnal color reminds us we can look and know. Sometimes we simply that beauty need not be in thrall to the seasons. recognize a place for what it is—one of the most beautiful places on Earth. 2 We start with the world’s great peaks, which redwood national park inspire great awe; no wonder we have long been drawn to them. To gaze on the majesty of Alaska’s NORTHERN CALIFORNIA Mount McKinley or the great Himalayan summits that ring Nepal’s Annapurna Sanctuary is to under- Big is beautiful when it comes to coast redwoods stand why the ancients and our elders reserved (Sequoia sempervirens), and they don’t come much the highest places for their gods. To hike, climb, bigger than in Redwood National Park, which pro- or look on the world’s mountains is to escape our tects a precious relic forest—some 45 percent of all earthbound lives. surviving coast redwood habitat—whose 350-foot- tall, 2,000-year-old trees are among the world’s Valleys are diferent. Their beauty still inspires oldest and tallest living organisms. awe—as in the immense savanna of Kenya’s Masai Mara or among the clifs and rocky amphitheaters DON’T MISS of America’s Bryce Canyon—but often valleys are places of habitation whose gentler beauty owes The 32-mile Avenue of the Giants (Route 254) gives access something to a human touch, such as the vine- to the region’s ﬁnest forest and the world’s largest surviv- yards and olive groves of Tuscany or the emerald ing stand of virgin redwoods. patchwork of paddy ﬁelds across the lowlands of northern Thailand. Redwoods reach for the sky in Redwood National Park, part of an ecosystem that is 160 million years old. 10 P EAKS & VALLEYS
chiang mai province NORTHERN THAILAND The landscapes of Chiang Mai are as varied as the many peoples that have long been drawn to this area of Thailand, one of Southeast Asia’s most important historical crossroads. Paddy ﬁelds ﬁll the lowlands and sinuous hillside terraces with a vivid patchwork of jade and emerald. Encroaching on all sides is the darker, denser green of jungle, laced with slow-ﬂowing rivers and shadowed by moun- tains like Doi Inthanon (8,415 ft/2,565 m) and Doi Chiang Dao (7,136 ft/2,175 m), two of the country’s highest peaks. DON’T MISS The region’s capital, Chiang Mai, has a moated old town that has retained its charm and is a base for excursions to out-of-the-way tribal villages and for cycling, hiking, elephant trekking, bird-watching, and rafting trips in the surrounding backcountry. Paddy ﬁelds near Chiang Mai; about half of Thailand’s arable land is given over to rice production. 12 PEA KS & VA LLE YS
SOUTHWESTERN KENYA masai mara national When the sun sets in the Masai Mara National Reserve, Africa’s vast skies ﬁll with stars as reserve the tree-dotted grasslands and low escarp- ments of the savanna below are bathed in a gentle golden glow. Shadows gather and the dry, searing heat of the day gives way to the balmy stillness of twilight, a cooling calm before the storm of evening activity erupts among many of the thousands of crea- tures—lions, leopards, elephants, rhinoceros, hyenas, and more—that call this corner of southwestern Kenya home. DON’T MISS Visit the Masai Mara in August, when 1.2 million wildebeests, 750,000 zebras, and other animals driven north by drought arrive in the region during the “Great Migration” from the Serengeti plains of neighboring Tanzania. Sunset over the Masai Mara (right) and a cheetah (above), which likes to hunt when the sun is low 14 P E AKS & VA LLEYS
torres del paine PATAGONIA, CHILE Yes, they are torres—towers—but no human- made tower has the awe-inspiring grandeur of the vast, soaring granite monoliths at the heart of the Torres del Paine massif. Yet this great easterly spur of the Andes, protected by a 935-square-mile (2,422 sq km) national park, ofers far more than skyscraping spires and pinnacles. Trails wend through pine-scented forest, past emerald lakes, and across windswept plains to the fringes of the Grey, Dickson, and other glaciers of the Southern Patagonian Ice Field. DON’T MISS Day hikes on good, marked trails ofer views of the Paine’s celebrated pinnacles. Hikers can follow the famous “W” trail through the mountains in ﬁve days, staying at refugios, or make a full circuit of the mas- sif in eight or nine days. Sunrise casts the granite spires and rock walls of Patagonia’s Paine massif in a golden glow. 17 P E AKS & VA L L E YS
tuscany CENTRAL ITALY Tuscany is blessed, even by Italy’s high stan- dards. In Florence, it has Europe’s greatest Renaissance city, and in Siena, its most perfect medieval town. Hilltop villages look much as they have for centuries, and the timeless landscapes, worked over millennia, are a tapestry of vineyards, age-old olive groves, cypress-topped hills, rustic farm- houses, and ﬁelds of wheat and summer sunﬂowers. Visitors gorged on art and scen- ery can feast on the region’s sublime food or sample wine at a profusion of wineries. DON’T MISS The Val d’Orcia (Orcia Valley), south of Siena, epito- mizes all that is best in Tuscany, home to pastoral landscapes and a lovely abbey—Sant’Antimo—as well as a trio of its most captivating small towns: Pienza, Montalcino, and Montepulciano. Olives, cypresses, vineyards, and rolling hills—a classic Tuscan landscape in the Orcia Valley near Pienza 19 P E AKS & VA L L E YS
olympic OLYMPIC PENINSULA, national WASHINGTON park The U.S. National Park Service has called this picturesque expanse “three parks in one.” Only three? Someone needs to recount, because few areas in North America are quite as varied. Land- scape proliferates, from the wild beaches at the park’s fringes, through vast tracts of old-growth rain forest dense with mossy undergrowth and fast-ﬂowing streams, to the alpine meadows and deep-cut valleys that herald the glaciers at the park’s jagged, mountainous heart. DON’T MISS Few roads penetrate the park’s mountainous interior, but Hurricane Ridge ofers accessible alpine and Nordic skiing, along with superb views of the surrounds. Deer graze (above) on sloping ﬁelds at Hurricane Ridge in Olympic National Park; a bunchberry ﬂower (left) nestles among ferns. 21 P EAKS & VALLEYS
yosemite national park EASTERN CALIFORNIA Some 900,000 visitors ﬂock to Yosemite National Park in an average July. By January, that ﬁgure has fallen to just 26,000, making winter a wonderful time to visit, not just for the lack of crowds but also for the added splendor that snow lends to the landscape and the ice-sharp clarity of the mountains on crisp, blue-skied days. Join rangers on guided snowshoe hikes, sit in a warm shuttle bus on a drive around the park, or just curl up in front of the ﬁre at the Ahwahnee Hotel, a national historical landmark. DON’T MISS Some trails remain open in the Yosemite Valley in winter, and there’s skiing at nearby Badger Pass. You can also skate outdoors at Curry Village in the shadow of Half Dome and Glacier Point, two of the park’s most spectacular natural features. The sun-dappled rock walls of El Capitan loom over a snowy Merced River in Yosemite National Park. 23 P E A KS & VA L L E YS
mount mckinley DENALI NATIONAL PARK, ALASKA You might come to see bears foraging in the brush or to admire the sublime moun- tain scenery along the 90-mile Denali Park Road, or with the hope of spotting moose and herds of caribou in the Teklanika Valley. Whatever you come to see in Denali National Park, a protected area about the size of Mas- sachusetts, you won’t want to leave without a glimpse of its majestic centerpiece: the 20,320-foot (6,196 m) Mount McKinley, the highest point in North America. DON’T MISS Companies in the park are licensed to take visitors dogsledding, a Denali tradition—park rangers ran dog-team patrols as far back as the 1920s. Sleds can cover 30 miles in a day, an unforgettable way to see the park’s wildlife and winter vistas. A canoe trip on Wonder Lake in Denali National Park, Alaska, with Mount McKinley in the background 24 PEA KS & VA LLE YS
11 10 taktshang » « jeju island monastery SOUTH KOREA BHUTAN A spectacular volcano, Hallasan (6,398 Few outsiders visit the Himalayan ft/1,950 m), dormant for 800 years, kingdom of Bhutan, and even fewer has bequeathed Jeju many of its pris- climb to Taktshang, or the Tiger’s tine natural features and rich habitats. Nest, a clif-edge Buddhist monastery These include a main crater, 360 minor founded in the 17th century and craters, and a profusion of landscapes situated at 10,236 feet (3,120 m), that range from black-sand beaches nestled in pristine and mist-shrouded and waterfall-laced jungle to upland mountains that rise above mostly tundra and fertile lowlands that sup- untouched forests. port a wealth of rare ﬂora and fauna. A dormant volcanic crater on Hallasan, Taktshang Monastery, the Tiger’s Nest, South Korea’s highest point in remote western Bhutan 12 « bryce canyon SOUTHWESTERN UTAH Start with color—reds, browns, ochers—and the limestone of the Paunsaugunt Plateau. Add the power of natural erosion and the millen- nial work of frost, wind, and water. Then stand back and admire one of nature’s most dazzling creations— the immense rock amphitheaters and rock pinnacles, or hoodoos, of Bryce Canyon. A visitor admires sunrise over the sweep of the Bryce Amphitheater.
14 13 alpine » « lauterbrunnen national park SWITZERLAND VICTORIA, AUSTRALIA Lauterbrunnen is one of the Alps’ Sweeping mountain ridges, jagged deepest valleys, guarded by the peaks, wild rivers, snow gum forests, great peaks of the Eiger, Mönch, and ﬂower-ﬁlled meadows, and high Jungfrau. Rent a scooter and skirt plains grasslands—even in a country past the area’s velvety ﬁelds and as vast and as rich in landscape as sparkling waterfalls to the base of the Australia, the wide-open spaces of Jungfrau Railway, which at 11,332 feet Alpine National Park have a unique (3,454 m) is Europe’s highest. natural grandeur. Immense rock walls soar above the meadows of the Lauterbrunnen Valley, The lookout at Fainters North ofers where visitors will ﬁnd pleasant cafés views over the sloping peaks and from which to view them. meadows of the Bogong High Plains. 15 « glacier national park NORTHERN MONTANA Scenery in the 1,583 square miles (4,100 sq km) of Glacier National Park is so magniﬁcent that it has been called the “Crown of the Continent. ” Ecosys- tems from prairie to tundra provide habitats for many hundreds of plants and animals, while some 700 miles (1,125 km) of trails help open the area to almost two million visitors a year. Glacier (yellow avalanche) lilies at Logan Pass in Glacier National Park
jasper national park ALBERTA, CANADA Winter, spring, summer, or fall—it makes no diference: the majesty of Jasper National Park, at the heart of the Canadian Rock- ies, remains undiminished. This varied and pristine landscape, which is also the largest national park in the Rockies, cries out to outdoor enthusiasts who ﬂock here year- round to experience a wilderness of river, forest, mountain, and ice, seduced by its magniﬁcent trails, soaring peaks, pristine powder, and crashing white water. DON’T MISS Drive through the ﬁnest scenery in the Canadian Rockies—past immense peaks, incredible glaciers, wildﬂower meadows, and iridescent lakes—on the 143-mile (230 km) Iceﬁelds Parkway from Jasper to Lake Louise. Sun-tinged peaks and wisps of early morning mist frame Spirit Island and its reﬂection, captured in the waters of Jasper’s Maligne Lake. 28 P E AKS & VA LLEYS
killarney COUNTY KERRY, IRELAND “It’s a soft day,” the Irish will say to describe a mizzling afternoon with a bit of rain. Soft days come often to Killarney, in Ireland’s southwest corner, courtesy of the Atlantic and the Gulf Stream, but the result is a verdant landscape of bubbling brooks, water- falls, and lakes framed by dulcet woods of oak and yew, lush banks of ferns, and fuchsia- tinged hedgerows. Above it all soar the steep slopes of the country’s highest mountains, the magniﬁcently named MacGillycuddy’s Reeks (3,406 ft/1,038 m). DON’T MISS Any Irish visit must take in the craic (the fun), so spend an evening exploring Killarney and its old- time pubs. Then allow two days for the Ring of Kerry, a 111-mile (179 km) drive around the region’s ﬁnest lakes, mountains, and monuments. Historic monuments, such as Ross Castle outside Killarney, are a feature of County Kerry’s landscapes. 30 P E AKS & VA LLEYS
annapurna sanctuary NEPAL The Annapurna Sanctuary is a magniﬁcent mountain-ringed glacial basin situated above 13,000 feet (4,000 m) in the heart of the Himalaya. Sacred to the local Gurung people and unseen by outsiders until the 1950s, it has become a popular trekking destination, largely because it serves as the base camp for climbers tackling the peaks of the sur- rounding Annapurna range. But no technical skills are required for the multiday trek up to the camp, nor for the increasingly popular day hikes in and around the sanctuary. DON’T MISS The trek to the sanctuary climbs through ever more spectacular scenery, from the Himalayan foothills to the high mountains of the sanctuary. Stays in “teahouses” in the Annapurna Conservation Area ofer insights into the daily life of Nepali villages. Prayer ﬂags ﬂutter at the Annapurna base camp, one of the world’s most popular trekking destinations. 32 P E AKS & VA LLEYS
20 19 munnar » « jotunheimen national park WESTERN GHATS, INDIA BESSEGGEN, NORWAY The Western Ghats are among the world’s grandest and most diverse Vast lakes of sparkling water weave mountain ranges, stretching almost through high, wind-scoured mountain 1,000 miles (1,600 km) down India’s ridges in this magniﬁcently empty, western coast. At least 139 species of ice-carved park. Hikers tackling the mammals and 508 bird species thrive region’s tough but popular seven- here. Among the 5,000 species of hour Besseggen Trail will experience ﬂora is one that has greatly improved some of the breathtaking grandeur of the lot of humankind over the millen- a region Norwegians call the “Land of nia: Camellia sinensis, the tea plant, the Giants. ” dressing the hills in vibrant greens. The view from the top of the Besseg- gen Trail is one of Norway’s ﬁnest. Tea plantations swathe the slopes of the Western Ghats around Munnar. 21 « cradle mountain national park TASMANIA, AUSTRALIA Jagged peaks, ancient rain forest, beech woods, and alpine heathland make up much of Cradle Mountain’s pristine wilderness, a haven for remarkable wildlife that is crisscrossed by trails such as the Overland Track, one of Australia’s ﬁnest bush walks. Beech trees cloak the slopes between Lake Wilks and Cradle Mountain.
23 22 aoraki/ » « autumn in mount cook new england national park CENTRAL VERMONT NEW ZEALAND A region that is already prettier than All but one of New Zealand’s loftiest a picture—all village greens, russet- peaks can be found in this awe-inspiring red barns, and steepled churches— alpine park, including Aoraki, or Mount becomes prettier still as the leaves Cook (12,316 ft/3,754 m), the country’s start to turn in the fall. Countless highest point. Trails to suit all abilities festivals celebrate this transforma- ofer a window onto a spectacular world tion, which is one of the greatest free of ice and snow. shows on Earth. Autumn wraps New England’s towns A climber admires the dawn view over and countryside in a blaze of dazzling the cloud-covered Mueller Glacier high in seasonal color. the Southern Alps of New Zealand. 24 « the highlands SCOTLAND Sun-dappled moorland, jewel-like lochs, romantic heather-covered mountains, and deep, glacier-cut glens, or valleys—many steeped in the history of clan warfare and bloody battles—make up the Highlands, the highest, wildest, and most haunting landscape in the British Isles. Winter settles over Glencoe at the heart of the Scottish Highlands.
bali rain forest BALI, INDONESIA Dawn sees Bali’s lush rain forest at its most beautiful. Pale sunlight dapples verdant glades where dew falls and the morning- fresh air is alive with birdsong. Mist rises above the trees and settles in the deep val- leys that radiate from towering volcanoes at the island’s heart. Waterfalls crash over moss-covered rocks, and fast-ﬂowing rivers carve through narrow canyons. The Bali- nese, up with the sun, come to leave ofer- ings at the estimated 20,000 Hindu temples that lie, half-hidden, deep within the forest. DON’T MISS The best way to see the heart of the rain forest is on a rafting tour from a base in Ubud, Bali’s cultural center, riding the surging white water of the Ayung River as it runs through a beautiful, forest-shrouded gorge north of town. The Ayung River cuts a swath through the under- growth and luxuriant forest canopy of central Bali. 36 P EAKS & VALLE YS
26 great barrier reef QUEENSLAND, AUSTRALIA The seas of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef are a rhapsody in blue, a shifting mosaic of sapphire, cobalt, and aqua- marine, beneath which lies a still more beautiful world of almost inﬁnite marine variety. Spread across 133,000 square miles (344,000 sq km), the reef is the world’s largest living structure. An aerial view of part of the Great Barrier Reef around Australia’s Queensland coast, a structure so large it can be seen from outer space
“Throw of the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” Mark Twain there’s magic at the water’s edge. In water’s is over, won long ago by glacial ice, while on the solitary domain, in the immensity of the powder-soft Paciﬁc beaches of Tahiti, nothing oceans, its beauty is simple—the shifting mosaic could be farther from the fray than the lap of of current and color, the mirror it holds to the sky. azure water against white sand. But something happens where land meets sea or lake meets shore. Water is no longer alone. Now There is alchemy wherever land meets water. it shapes another landscape, and new kinds of The encounters are countless and varied. Many beauty are born. are remarkable; few are without beauty. Sometimes, when the reﬂections of sun- 27 dappled moorland are caught in a Scottish loch, such as Loch Katrine, or coral reefs thrive of guilin warm-watered shores as they do amid Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, the encounter of land and GUANGXI, CHINA water is harmonious. At other times, it is shift- ing and shapeless, the limits of land and water Nature’s fancy for the fantastical and fairy-tale is blurred, as in the Amazon’s sweep through its given full rein in Guilin, in southern China, where delta wetlands or the marshes and mangrove wind, water, and time have created one of the swamps of Florida’s Everglades National Park. world’s most spectacular karst landscapes, carv- ing vast limestone towers, clifs, and pinnacles Elsewhere, the meeting of land and water is from the mountains and pastoral hills that ﬂank dramatic and sometimes violent. On Brazil’s the curves of the Li River. border with Argentina, the fury of the Iguaçu waterfalls as they roar over an immense basalt DON’T MISS outcrop makes for one of the world’s most spec- tacular sights. On the Na Pali coast of Hawaii To enjoy the best of the scenery, take one of the numerous and Ireland’s western ramparts, the millennial daylong Li River boat cruises from Guilin downstream to battle of sea and shore creates spectacular clifs the picturesque little town of Yangshuo. as the land surrenders to the crashing waves of the sea’s advance. In Norway’s fjords, the battle A man rows on the Li River amid the spectacular limestone scenery for which the region is celebrated. 40 RIVERS & SHORES
na pali KAUAI, HAWAII coast Not for nothing did the coast of northwest Kauai feature in the movie Jurassic Park. The region’s vegetation-swathed and deeply ﬁssured Na Pali clifs, which plunge thousands of feet to pristine and secluded beaches, look like a strange, prehis- toric world. The clifs have been formed by a twin assault from the incessant pounding of waves and the swift-ﬂowing streams—fed by 460 inches (1,200 cm) of rainfall a year—that carve deep clefts and valleys as they crash to the sea from the island’s precipitous interior. DON’T MISS View the clifs, seabirds, and marine life (dolphins, turtles, and monk seals, plus whales from December through April) on a boat trip or by walking to Hanakapi’ai Beach (4 mi/ 6 km) or hiking the demanding Kalalau Trail (22 mi/35 km round-trip). Fast-ﬂowing streams and waterfalls (left) helped carve the steep chasms and ﬁssures of the Na Pali coast (above). 43 RIVERS & SHORES
crater lake KLAMATH, OREGON At 1,943 feet (592 m), Crater Lake in south- central Oregon is the United States’ deepest lake. Because it is fed by precipitation— notably 45 feet (14 m) of snow a year—and has no inlets or outlets, it is also one of the country’s purest, famed for the clarity and startling blue of its water. Formed after the eruption of Mount Mazama, part of the Cascade Range, around 7,700 years ago, it is surrounded by the jagged, clif-edged rim of the former volcano and dotted with islands created by subsequent eruptions. DON’T MISS Two viewpoints ofer wonderful vistas across the lake: the Cloudcap Lookout, accessed as part of the East and West Rim Drives (open to cars in sum- mer only), and the three-hour hike to Mount Scott (8,929 ft/2,721 m) on the lake’s eastern ﬂank. Crater Lake, with Wizard Island at its heart. Both were created by a series of volcanic eruptions. 44 RIVERS & SHORES
the everglades SOUTHERN FLORIDA The constant creep of slow water weaves a spell in Everglades National Park, beautiful- ly shaping and transforming one of the wild- est and most diverse wetland ecosystems in North America. Cypress swamps, sawgrass marsh, mangrove forest, and numerous other habitats across the park’s 1.5 million acres (6,070 sq km) provide a rich refuge for wildlife that includes such rare species as the manatee, Florida panther, and Ameri- can crocodile. DON’T MISS Take a naturalist-led boat tour to get to the dense, swampy heart of the Everglades, twisting through thick mangrove forest, or to the park’s more open saltwater margins on the trail of alligators, raccoons, bobcats, dolphins, and other wildlife. A heron takes wing in Everglades National Park, ﬂy- ing over cypress swamps and mangrove forests that form one of the world’s most important wetlands. 46 RIVERS & SHORES
The 51 Most Beautiful Places in the World
Islands & Beaches
From the Serengeti to the Grand Canyon.
By Caitlin Morton
Massive glaciers, staggering mountains, plains dotted with wild animals: Our planet sure is incredible. In fact, when looking at the most beautiful places in the world, it can feel impossible to decide where to visit next. The islands of Southeast Asia? The deserts of the Middle East? How about the countless travel-worthy sites right here in the United States?
While pinpointing all of Mother Nature’s greatest hits could take a lifetime, we think these 51 staggering landscapes and awe-inspiring wonders—from Antarctica to Zimbabwe—need to move to the very top of your travel list. Whether you’re looking for beaches, forests, or national parks, you’re sure to find you new favorite destination below.
This gallery has been updated with new information since its original publish date.
The Azores, Portugal
Roughly 900 miles off the coast of Lisbon, this Portuguese archipelago can inspire wanderlust with a single photo. The verdant valleys, steep oceanside cliffs, rows of blue hydrangeas, and scattering of waterfalls make the Azores a paradise worth exploring. Just make sure you visit before everyone you know beats you to it.
Mount Kilimanjaro, Tanzania
Africa’s highest peak seems more striking than a lot of other famous mountains, because it’s an ancient stratovolcano that’s not part of any mountain range. That means the 19,000-foot summit drops down to vast, flat plains on all sides, making it a mirage-like blip on Tanzania’s widespread topography. As an added bonus, the peak requires no technical mountaineering skills to summit, so even novice hikers can cross this item off their bucket list.
Wulingyuan Scenic Area, China
“Scenic’ might be an understatement here: This 100-square-mile attraction in China’s Hunan Province contains thousands of sandstone pillars that are nature’s version of skyscrapers—some even stretch taller than the Empire State Building’s midpoint.
Arashiyama Bamboo Grove, Japan
Every traveler should experience the ethereal glow and seemingly endless heights of this bamboo grove on the outskirts of Kyoto. The experience even extends beyond the visual realm: In 1996, Japan’s Ministry of the Environment included the sounds here—wood creaking, leaves rustling—as one of the top 100 Soundscapes of Japan.
That’s right, we put an entire continent on here. Although 99 percent of Antarctica is covered with ice, the landscape still manages to be stunningly diverse—surreal blue glaciers, active volcanoes, the rough waterways of the Drake Passage, and 360-degree views of untouched snow. And those views are made even better when an emperor penguin or humpback whale makes an appearance.
Na Pali Coast, Hawaii
Kauai has one of the world’s most gorgeous coastlines, with towering waterfalls and isolated crescent beaches. Just be prepared to put in a little effort to soak up its wonders: Na Pali can only be seen from a helicopter, catamaran, or a rather grueling hike.
Namib Desert, Namibia
With its otherworldly landscapes and isolated luxury lodges—not to mention populations of rhinos, giraffes, and elephants—Namibia is like nowhere else on Earth. In fact, its red sand dunes and skeletal trees might make you think you’ve been transported to Mars instead of Southwest Africa.
If the moon had a shoreline, it would probably look something like Reynisfjara. Just a 20-minute drive from Vik in southern Iceland, jet-black sand and spectacularly shaped basalt columns make this beach one of the most impressive sites in an already impressive country.
Few parts of the world can claim such a range of natural beauty as Italy, with craggy peaks and verdant hills to turquoise waters lined by white-sand beaches. But the island of Capri easily numbers among the most gorgeous (and most glamorous) spots in the country.
Cappadocia, an area in Turkey where entire cities have been carved into rock, is pretty incredible on its own. But whenever hot air balloons pepper the sky—with many floating up right at sunrise—its beauty level literally skyrockets.
Angel Falls, Venezuela
Venezuela overflows with natural wonders, including the world’s highest waterfall: the 3,212-foot cascades of Angel Falls, located in the UNESCO-protected Canaima National Park. Canaima is by far the country’s most popular attraction, and the falls stretch an astounding 19 times higher than Niagara Falls. Bonus: Pixar animators used the location as inspiration for Paradise Falls in Up—so you know it’s good.
Galápagos Islands, Ecuador
Do we really have to explain the allure of the Galápagos? If you can, make it a priority to visit this of-another-time stretch of Ecuador, with dinosaur-like giant tortoises lumbering through the tall grass and real-life blue-footed boobies. (Pro tip: A cruise is definitely the preferred way to explore the islands; Celebrity Cruise’s Xpedition ferries just 100 passengers and holds nightly lectures by naturalists from Galápagos National Park.)
Cliffs of Moher, Ireland
Few places exemplify the raw, untamed beauty of Ireland’s west coast like this natural wonder, which tops 702 feet at the highest point. And while you might know them better as the Cliffs of Insanity from The Princess Bride, in reality, the cliffs are located just south of Galway.
The Great Barrier Reef, Australia
Although the Great Barrier Reef (aka the largest living thing on Earth) can be seen from space, the best vantage point belongs to the avid snorkelers and scuba divers who visit each year. If you must resurface, do it at the Whitsundays—namely Whitehaven Beach, often considered to be one of the world’s most beautiful beaches.
The Grand Canyon, Arizona
Grand Canyon National Park, often called one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World, is on most travelers’ lists for a reason. Plan to hike some of the park’s most scenic loops—like Horseshoe Bend and the South Rim Trail—to get views of the rocky badlands of the Painted Desert, Navajo Nation, and even a waterfall or two.
Machu Picchu, Peru
While the intricate stone ruins of Machu Picchu are the work of 15th-century Incans, the site’s natural setting makes it even more alluring. Perched atop the flattened peak of a mountain, the ancient Wonder of the World benefits from the famous backdrop of Huayna Picchu, lush green surfaces, and a barrier of Andean peaks that, despite the landmark’s fame, makes you feel like you’ve stumbled upon a secret.
Mount Fuji, Japan
It’s hard to pick the single most beautiful place in Japan, but 12,388-foot Mount Fuji just might take the prize. Visit Lake Kawaguchiko in the spring for some of the best views of the mountain and cherry blossom trees—a postcard-worthy sight if we ever saw one. Or if you’re an avid hiker, plan a trip for mid-July until the end of August, when the snow melts enough to allow access to Fuji’s summit.
Covering roughly 40 percent of South America, including parts of Brazil, Peru, and Colombia, the Amazon is the largest rainforest on the planet, and home to more than 40,000 plant species and 1,300 bird species alone. But be sure to visit the winding rivers and diverse wildlife while you can—climate change (along with man-made fires) is increasingly whittling away the habitat every day.
Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Tanzania’s portion of the Serengeti is the ideal location for an African adventure. Visit between January and March to witness the wonder that is the Great Migration, an iconic phenomenon that sees 1.5 million wildebeest sweep through East Africa on an annual, 1,200-mile cycle.
Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia
Southwest Bolivia’s Salar de Uyuni is the largest salt flat in the world, and is about as surreal as landscapes come. When dry, the flat is a sheet of blindingly white salt tiles. During the wet season, the shallow lake mirrors the sky, creating a dreamy illusion of infinity.
Sequoia National Park, California
This central-Californian park is home to some 8,000 colossal sequoia trees—the gentle giants of the tree world. “General Sherman,” a tree named for the Civil War general, is the hero of these treasured acres: It stands 275 feet tall and 25 feet wide, making it the largest known single-stem tree on the planet.
Torres del Paine National Park, Chile
With its granite pillars, azure lakes, and steppes spotted with grazing guanacos, Torres del Paine is one of the most impressive sites in the entire Southern Hemisphere. It also happens to be an extremely popular destination for hikers: The ultra-ambitious can travel the Full Circuit—crossing the entire park—in nine days.
Nearly 350 miles off the southern coast of Yemen, Socotra has both the remoteness and surrealism of a distant planet. The UFO-like dragon’s blood trees are the island’s most notable feature—we dare you to find those in your neighborhood park.
With its blue lagoons and limestone cliffs, it’s easy to see why Palawan was voted one of the best islands in the world by our readers. It is also home to the otherworldly Puerto Princesa Subterranean River, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that travels five miles through an underground cave system.
Victoria Falls, Zambia and Zimbabwe
Nothing compares to standing in front of the world’s largest waterfall, which stretches in length for a full mile. Visit between February and May (after the region’s rainy season) for the clearest views of the 500 million liters of water that pour over the falls every 60 seconds.
The Lofoten Islands, Norway
Located 800 miles from Oslo and 95 miles north of the Arctic Circle, the Lofoten archipelago is known for its remote, rugged beauty. Here you’ll find clear blue waters that rival the Mediterranean, craggy mountains that rival Iceland, and enough edgy museums and fishing villages to rival…well, just about anywhere in Scandinavia.
Avenue of the Baobabs, Madagascar
Separated from continental Africa by 250 miles of water, Madagascar is adventure personified. The island nation’s secrets include giant moths, bug-eyed lemurs, and places like the surreal Avenue of the Baobabs, where the centuries-old trees reach heights of nearly 100 feet.
Ha Long Bay, Vietnam
Ha Long Bay, located in northeast Vietnam, is beloved for its blue waters and spread of limestone islands, all occupied by tropical trees and wildlife. Board a Chinese junk boat to experience the beauty (and associated myths and stories) of the mist-shrouded emerald basin for yourself.
Laguna Colorada, Bolivia
About a three-hour drive north of Chile’s San Pedro de Atacama, this salt lake in the shadow of the Andes is known for its blood-red waters—the result of algae that thrive in extreme heat. Flamingos (and the lake) look their best from December to April: That’s when the lake is full of water, making it more reflective for photos, and the birds are breeding. Be sure to try and catch the lake at sunset, when it’s at its reddest.
Banff National Park, Canada
Easily one of the most beautiful spots in Canada, Banff National Park overwhelms with views of the Canadian Rockies and a regular cast of animals. The park is also known for its abundance of beautiful lakes, including Lake Louise, Moraine Lake, and glacial Lake Minnewanka—each more pristine than the last.
Namaqualand, South Africa
Namaqualand, a region spanning South Africa’s Northern Cape Province and the Namibian border, is known for its wildflowers, which usually bloom in the desert around August and September. Even if you miss that colorful window, the evergreen plants and mountains looming in the distance—not to mention the occasional antelope sighting—make Namaqualand a year-round destination.
Monteverde Cloud Forest, Costa Rica
Costa Rica is known for its biodiversity, and the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve alone acts as proof. Reptiles, migratory birds, and bats, plus the highest diversity of orchids in the world (more than 500 known species) fill this nearly 26,000-acre region northwest of the capital of San José.
Las Salinas de Torrevieja, Spain
Pink sand beaches are reason enough to hop on a plane to the Caribbean—but in Spain, you can swim in pink water. This rose-tinted lake located in Valencia is part of the gorgeous Las Salinas de Torrevieja National Park. It’s home to thousands of flamingos during breeding season, but most locals prefer to think of it as their natural spa—thanks to its high salt content, a quick float is both detoxing and exfoliating.
Caucasus Mountains, Georgia
For adventurous travelers who have grown tired of the crowded mountain trails in the Alps or or reservation-only vineyards in France, Georgia has everything you need and then some (yes, including wine). The best way to witness the diversity of the country’s terrain is on its hiking trails, which wind through the Greater Caucasus mountain range dividing Europe from Asia.
Far less crowded than sister islands Mykonos and Santorini, Zakynthos has some of the most beautiful beaches in the Greek Isles—namely, Navagio Beach. Sheltered by cliffs, Navagio is only accessible by boat, and draws its name (“Shipwreck”) from a freighter that ran aground, was abandoned, and still rests in the beach’s white sands today.
The Dark Hedges, Northern Ireland
This tree-lined road in Northern Ireland (which famously appeared in Season 1 of Game of Thrones) looks like the perfect place for a storybook villain to set up their lair—and we mean that as a compliment. Local legend has it that the Grey Lady (a ghost, not the New York Times) haunts the road at dusk.
Lake Tekapo, New Zealand
While purple, pink, and blue-hued lupin flowers may not be native to New Zealand (they hail from North America), they really do seem to bloom most vibrantly on the Oceanian nation’s South Island. At Lake Tekapo, in particular, the flowers juxtapose against the backdrop of the crystal clear water to create one of the country’s most stunning vistas.
Cameron Highlands, Malaysia
It’s hard to pick just one beautiful spot in geographically diverse Malaysia, but the Cameron Highlands might be the winner. Located in the state of Pahang, the 275-square-mile region is home to the largest tea plantations in the country—a place of fuzzy green hills rolling into the distance, where you can also explore butterfly gardens and strawberry farms.
Vaadhoo Island, Maldives
The beaches at Vaadhoo Island in the Maldives have received their fair share of online swooning, and for good reason. The bioluminescent phytoplankton in the water’s reefs emanate a dazzling blue glow, making it look as though the stars have somehow found their way down to earth for the night—a phenomenon that has aptly become known as the “Sea of Stars.”
Denali National Park, Alaska
Despite controversies over name changes and a shrinking elevation, Denali’s beauty is worth braving the extreme low temperatures. Make a road trip out of your visit, seeing as much of the 6 million acres of shimmering lakes and jagged mountains as you can.
The Dead Sea, Israel and Jordan
Don’t let the name fool you. The Dead Sea is, in fact, a saline lake with palm tree-lined mountains and white, serpentine salt formations. The amount of salt in the electric-blue water makes swimming difficult (not to mention, inadvisable), but floating is a breeze.
Plitvice Lakes National Park, Croatia
If you can make it through the crowds of selfie-taking tourists, you’ll discover that Plitvice Lakes National Park more than lives up to the hype. The 16 terraced lakes of Croatia’s most popular site are connected by waterfalls and vary in shades of blue, creating an infinitely dazzling result.
If your travel fantasies aren’t complete without a snowy setting, be sure to add Finnish Lapland to your list. While this northern region of Finland is lovely during the warmer months, try to plan your visit between November and March, when the trees are covered in thick layers of snow, huskies are eager to pull you around on a sled, and the Northern Lights are most likely to make an appearance.
Isle of Skye, Scotland
With fairy pools and endless undulations of hills, the magical Isle of Skye is the stuff dreams are made of. While the nature here is timeless, the island also has a food scene that’s totally modern—we can’t think of a more beautiful place to sample Michelin-starred cuisine.
Francesco Riccardo Iacomino
The vast stretches of lavender fields make Provence one of the prettiest (and best-smelling) places in France. Distilleries—where the essential oil from the flowers are bottled and used to make soaps, lotions, and creams—dot the area, but the multitude of fields featuring unreal violet views are the real pride of the region.
Raja Ampat, Indonesia
Raja Ampat is a chain of some 1,500 islands off the western coast of West Papua. The views here are downright prehistoric: think jagged lava peaks clad in green jungle, palms sprouting out of sheer cliff walls, and mist drifting in and out of deep canyons.
Wadi Rum, Jordan
With its cliffs, caverns, natural arches, and Mars-like red sand, it’s no wonder Wadi Rum is so beloved by both tourists and directors. (Lawrence of Arabia, The Martian, and Rogue One are just some of the many movies that have been filmed here. ) The site is just as stunning at night, when the sky transforms into an incomparable blanket of stars.
Valle de Cocora, Colombia
Valle de Cocora is one of the most beautiful landscapes in Colombia—and that’s saying something. The park (about a 7-hour drive west of Bogotá) is filled with the tallest palm trees in the world at nearly 200 feet, which look even more incredible set against the backdrop of misty green hills and craggy mountains.
Any Pinterest or Instagram user has probably seen a photo of Trolltunga (“Troll’s Tongue”), Norway’s undeniable photography darling. The protruding rock sits about 2,300 feet above Lake Ringedalsvatnet, tempting travelers to inch out to the edge. Unfortunately, Trolltunga has fallen prey to “death by popularity” and local organizations have called for tourist caps to protect the site. But even if you don’t get your once-in-a-lifetime profile picture on the rock’s edge, you can still soak up some epic fjord views from the surrounding mountain area.
Hidden in Kromlau’s Azalea and Rhododendron Park, just a two-hour drive southeast of Berlin, Rakotzsee (Rakotz Lake) is home to one of the most fairytale-like scenes you’ll ever see: Rakotzbrücke, a 19th-century stone bridge that creates a perfect circle when reflected in the waters below. It’s often referred to as “Devil’s Bridge,” since the dramatic structure seems so impossible that it must have been built by an otherworldly force.
The Baths, British Virgin Islands
Virgin Gorda is the third largest of the British Virgin Islands, with natural beauty covering virtually all of its 8.5 square miles. The island offers quiet beaches and coves and flora-filled national parks. Perhaps the prettiest (and most popular attraction), though, is the Baths, a seaside area where huge granite boulders form scenic saltwater pools and grottos.
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National Geographic Names Its Top 25 Travel Destinations for 2020
National Geographic Names Its Top 25 Travel Destinations for 2020
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Mawr Lighthouse in north Wales.
Alan Novelli/Alamy Stock Photo
- National Geographic has revealed its list of the top 25 must-see travel destinations for 2020.
- The list was divided into four categories: culture, city, nature, and adventure.
- To create the list, the magazine’s staff partnered with the editorial teams of National Geographic Traveler’s 17 international editions to create a wide-ranging, globe-spanning selection of sites.
- The US earned two entries: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, appeared under the city category, and Arizona’s Grand Canyon National Park was recommended for nature lovers.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
National Geographic just released its list of the top 25 must-see travel destinations for 2020. This list features places from all over the world, and it’s part of the publication’s effort to advocate for more sustainable tourism. Their picks take into account a number of factors, including cultural engagement, diversity, value, affordability, and community benefit.
Divided into four categories, the list offers suggestions for travelers with a focus on culture, city life, nature, or adventure. The must-see sites were picked in collaboration with 17 of National Geographic Traveler’s editorial teams across the world
Keep reading to see which locations made the list. Some of the images provided below (where noted) are courtesy of National Geographic’s Best Trips 2020.
Zakouma National Park, Chad
A herd of several hundred elephants heads toward a watering hole in Chad’s Zakouma National Park
Brent Stirton/National Geographic
This park is located south of the Sahara desert,and is known for its bustling wildlife. After taking drastic measures to prevent elephant poaching, only 24 elephants have been poached in the last decade at the park. The area’s elephant population is now on the rise for the first time in years.
There are also antelopes, hartebeests, giraffes, buffaloes, and rhinos.
Source: African Parks
Kamchatka Peninsula, Russia
A Kamchatka brown bear searches for salmon in the peninsula’s Kronotsky Nature Reserve
Igor Shpilenok/Nature Picture Library via National Geographic
Located in eastern Russia, the Kamchatka Peninsula consists of two mountain ranges, with 127 volcanoes — 22 of which are still active. There are also geysers, hot springs, and numerous rivers and swamps.
The area is known for its severe winters, but cool, wet summers. It is inhabited by the indigenous Korak, Chukchi, and Kamchadal settlements.
Ice — covered trees, known as snow monsters, transform southern Tohoku’s Zao ski resort into a winter wonderland.
Asahi Shimbun/Getty Images
The Tohoku Region of Japan is known for for its mountains, hot springs, and lakes, but also its severe winters. It’s under three hours by train from Tokyo, which will be the site of the 2020 Summer Olympics.
Source: Japan Guide
The Wales Way, United Kingdom
Mawr Lighthouse in north Wales.
Alan Novelli/Alamy Stock Photo
The Wales Way consists of three national routes that lead travelers through the country, with each route providing a distinct experience. The North Wales Way follows the old trading route along northern Wales, while the Cambrian Way snakes through the mountain regions. Finally, the Coastal Way goes up the west coast of Wales, around Cardigan Bay and various picturesque sea resort towns.
Source: Visit Wales
Grossglockner High Alpine Road, Austria
Alpine mountains from the Grossglockner high alpine road.
(Adam Balatoni/Alamy Stock Photo)
Located between mountain pastures and meadows, the High Alpine Road (named for the country’s highest peak, the over 12,000-foot Grossglockner) offers a beautiful, scenic walk through the Austrian Alps.
The Bay of Fires, on the northeastern coast, got its name from the Aboriginal campfires spotted by British seafarers — but it could also apply to its orange lichen — covered boulders.
National Geographic/Ewen Bell
The island of Tasmania, currently one of Australia’s trendiest travel destinations, is filled with rich history and culture. There are beautiful beaches along the coast and mountains a few hours inland. Hobart, its capital city, is known for its bustling art scene with the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA), which combines art and architecture. The gallery also has a winery and an award-winning restaurant.
Grand Canyon, Arizona, USA
The view from Lipan Point is worth the short detour off the main drive along the South Rim of Grand Canyon National Park.
One of the most famous parks in the United States, the Grand Canyon offers a stunning display of eroded rock, and all the beautiful colors that come with it.
Source: National Park Service
Ibrahim Asad/Getty Images
Located in the Indian Ocean, this beautiful island offers sandy white beaches and has a rich heritage that combines Indian, Sri Lankan, Arab, and North African culture. It’s also been leading the charge on climate change since 1987.
Source: Visit Maldives
Canary Islands, Spain
Sabine Lubenow/ Getty Images
This collection of famous islands is a popular tourist destination. The volcanic soil grows bananas, oranges, coffee, sugar canes, and dates. There are two groups of islands: The western islands consist of Tenerife, Gran Canaria, La Palma, La Gomera, and Ferro islands, while the eastern islands compromise Lanzarote, Fuerteventura Island, and six smaller islets.
National Blue Trail, Hungary
Sunset over the clouds in the Matra mountains, Hungary.
This popular hiking destination attracts adventurers from all over the world. It became famous after a 1979 documentary was filmed about the trail.
Source: Outdoor Active
Bialowieza Forest, Belarus/Poland
Tomasz Bobrzynski (tomanthony) / Getty Images
Located on the border of Poland and Belarus, this stunning forest is known for its biodiversity and is home to the largest population of European bison. The forest spans roughly 350,605 acres. National Geographic dubs it «one of Europe’s last true wild places.»
Source: World Heritage Centre
Kalahari Desert, southern Africa
Westend61 / Getty Images
This desert spans Botswana, Namibia, and South Africa. There are over 400 different species of plants within the desert, and it’s home to lions, leopards, cheetahs, gemboks, meerkats, and more. It is also home to the largest African antelope, the eland.
Source: I Travel To
Magdalen Islands, Canada
Harp seal pups are born on the ice and need a stable platfo rm to survive. Sea ice coverage in the gulf is getting less predictable every year.
Jennifer Hayes/National Geographic
The Magdalen Islands consist of eight individual islands. Each has it own unique culture and unique adventures. There’s also an extremely adorable harp seal nursery in the Gulf of St. Lawrence, off the coast of the archipelago.
Source: Tourisme Iles de la Madeleine
Chapel del Rosario, a beautiful baroque chapel in the Santo Domingo church, Puebla, Mexico
(Anton Ivanov/Alamy Stock Photo
The fourth-largest city in Mexico, Puebla is known for having over 350 churches and stunning architecture. The Santo Domingo church (pictured above) is known for its beautiful, gold-covered baroque structures. It’s also noted for its authenticity, standing out among other, more traditionally tourist-y Mexican regions.
Massimiliano Patacchini / EyeEm / Getty Images
This city is known for its eats — specifically, cheese and prosciutto. The region is also home to a number of museums and historical cathedrals, like the Parma Cathedral. It was even named Italy’s Capital of Culture for 2020.
Source: The Crazy Tourist
Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina
A replica of the 16th — century Stari Most (Old Bridge) spans the Neretva River in Mostar
Andrew Compton/Alamy Stock Photo
This eastern European destination is known for its old stone buildings and cobblestone roads. There is also a charming bridge which sits above the Neretva River, a version of the 16th century Stari Most (Old Bridge), rebuilt in 2004.
Source: Earth Trekkers
Fort Kochi, India
A Rey/Getty Images
Known for being the first European settlement in India, Fort Kochi is a mixture of many different cultures. The display of Chinese Fishing Nets (as seen above) is one of the historic area’s most famous sights.
Source: Brogan Abroad
Zacharias of Hradec Square, Telc, Czechia
kaprik/Alamy Stock Photo
While the original city burned down in a fire in 1530, the rebuilt area has now become one of the most beautiful destinations in the Czech Republic. Its historic town center was even designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There is also a castle, with beautiful displays of Renaissance architecture.
Source: Time Travel Turtle
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
Downtown Philadelphia’s skyline shines with skyscrapers One Liberty Place, BNY Mellon Center, and the Comcast Center.
National Geographic/Dina Litovsky
Also known as «The City of Brotherly Love,» Philadelphia is known for its historical and cultural ties to the founding of the United States — and you may have heard that their cheesesteaks aren’t too shabby.
Source: Visit Philly
Abu Simbel, Egypt
Colossal statues of Egyptian pharaoh Ramses II guard the entrance to Abu Simbel‘s main temple
This archeological site is the home of two temples built by Ramses II. There are four statues of the Egyptian king situated in the front of the temple. Nearby is another temple, dedicated to Nefertari, and built to be used for the worship of sky goddess Hathor.
Mendoza Province, Argentina
The Andes form a backdrop for grape vines in Mendoza’s Uco Valley.
David Noton Photography/Alamy Stock Photo
The province, located in the high peaks of the Andes Mountains, has three wine regions and some wineries that are over 100 years old.
Source: Earth Trekkers
Maya Biosphere Reserve, Guatemala
The Temple of the Great Jaguar towers over the main plaza of the ancient Maya city of Tikal
Simon Dannhauer/iStockPhoto/Getty Images
In late 2018, History reported that a recent survey of the region revealed over 60,000 previously unknown structures in the territory, which indicates that the Mayan civilization was much larger than once believed. Before the discovery, it was said to have stretched from south Mexico to Guatemala and Belize.
Gobekli Tepe, Turkey
Ajay Ojha / Getty Images
This city is home to what is believed to be one of the world’s oldest temples — the Gobeki Tepe temple is thought to be over 11,000 years old.
Source: Smithsonian Magazine
Guizhou Province, China
Shihan Shan / Getty Images
CNN reported that Guizhou was one of China’s fastest-growing provinces. It’s also home to Asia’s longest cave and brews one of the country’s most popular liquors — Moutai.
Lago Ercina is one of two glacial lakes that linger in Picos de Europa, Spain’s first national par
National Geographic/Chiara Goia
Asturias is located along a rugged coastline and offers stunning sandy beach views. It is also known for its wildlife, like wolves and wild boar that roam the area. The region has not historically seen much tourist activity, making it the perfect place to have an under-the-radar escape.
Source: Along Dusty Roads
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Arts & Culture
Best of the World: 35 incredible places to discover in 2022 and beyond
If you’re looking for inspiration, editors from National Geographic Traveller titles around the world have picked the planet’s 35 most exciting destinations for travel in 2022. Five categories — Adventure, Culture and History, Nature, Family and Sustainability — frame unforgettable experiences that reveal the beauty and diversity of the world around us. The pandemic may have changed when, where, and how we travel, but there’s no doubt that we’re excited to pack our bags and hit the road again.
Columbia River Gorge, Oregon/Washington, is the US’s largest National Scenic Area.
1. Chimanimani National Park, Mozambique
Support conservation efforts in a biodiverse wonderland
Located on Mozambique’s mountainous border with Zimbabwe, Chimanimani National Park, established in October 2020, is home to Mozambique’s highest peak, the 7,992ft Mount Binga. It was once flush with elephants and lions, whose images appear in ancient rock art created by the ancestral San people.
Decades of poaching and civil unrest decimated wildlife populations, but small numbers of elephants remain, as do at least 42 other species of mammals and a dazzling array of plant and avian life. In two recent biodiversity surveys alone, 475 plant species and 260 bird species were identified, along with 67 amphibian and reptile species, including one frog and one lizard thought to be new to science.
From National Geographic Travel US (Maryellen Kennedy Duckett)
2. Columbia River Gorge, Oregon/Washington
Mindfully wine and dine in the US’s largest National Scenic Area
The US’s largest National Scenic Area is probably not where you think it is: it straddles the Oregon-Washington border and comprises 293,000 acres of public and private lands along the Columbia River Gorge. With Mount Hood nearby, the area attracts more than two million visitors annually. To help reduce tourist impact on local nature and culture, a nonprofit alliance has kick-started a collaborative movement that has morphed into a best-practice model for building a sustainable tourism economy.
Columbia Gorge Tourism Alliance initiatives include the visitor education programme Ready, Set, Gorge, and the East Gorge Food Trail, a network of farms, historic hotels, wineries and other homegrown experiences.
From National Geographic Travel US (Maryellen Kennedy Duckett)
3. Ruhr Valley, Germany
Be surprised by art and nature in a former industrial zone
Mining and steel production once dominated the densely populated Ruhr Valley, in Germany’s western state of North Rhine-Westphalia. Today, the region is repurposing former slag heaps and post-apocalyptic-looking industrial sites as parks and open-air cultural spaces. The most famous is the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Zeche Zollverein (Zollverein Coal Mine Industrial Complex), home to an outdoor swimming pool, ice rink and walking trails.
Zollverein is part of the wider Emscher Landscape Park, an east-west system of green spaces and corridors covering nearly 175 square miles. Rent a bike in Essen for a car-free Ruhr Valley trip along cycling routes, many of which follow former railway tracks, or explore on foot via the 96-mile-long Hohe Mark Steig, a trekking trail opened in 2021.
From National Geographic Traveler Germany (Franziska Haack)
4. Yasuní National Park, Ecuador
Learn what’s at stake in a threatened, biodiverse paradise
In recognition of the global importance of the Amazon, France is leading the fight against deforestation in eastern Ecuador’s Yasuní National Park, which was designated a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in 1989. The 4,000sq-mile park — home to mahogany trees, sweet guabas, anthuriums, palms, and hypnotisingly green ferns — is the first of five pilot sites in the French-funded TerrAmaz programme. This four-year initiative, launched in late 2020, supports sustainable development and biodiversity in the Amazon rainforest of Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru.
Considered one of the most biodiverse places on Earth, Yasuní shelters an astonishing array of creatures, such as anteaters, capybaras, sloths, spider monkeys and about 600 species of bird.
From National Geographic Traveler Latin America (Karen Alfaro)
5. Łódź, Poland
Focus on a factory town turned sustainable-living leader
Named a UNESCO City of Film in 2017 for its rich cinematic culture, Łódź, a city with a population of around 700,000 in central Poland, was a major textile manufacturing hub in the 19th and 20th centuries. Now Poland’s Hollywood is flipping the script on its industrial past to create a greener future.
Łódź is a leader in sustainable living, embracing innovative ecological solutions, such as using pre-RDF (refuse-derived fuel) and biomass energy to heat homes. In 2021, the city partnered with the European e-commerce delivery platform InPost to significantly reduce CO₂ emissions and traffic in the city centre by installing 70 parcel locker locations and electric car-charging stations.
From National Geographic Traveler Poland (Martyna Szczepanik)
6. Adelaide, Australia
On track to become the world’s next National Park City
Following the lead of London, which became the world’s first National Park City in 2019, metropolitan Adelaide, Australia is vying to become the second. Already named the third-most-livable city on the planet in The Global Livability Index 2021, South Australia’s cosmopolitan, coastal capital is working to become cooler, greener, wilder and more climate-resilient through rewilding projects, such as creating more butterfly-friendly habitats (the city has some 30 threatened butterfly species), studying the possibility of bringing the platypus back to the River Torrens after a 140-year hiatus, and awarding community grants to plant tens of thousands of trees across South Australia.
From National Geographic Travel US (Maryellen Kennedy Duckett)
7. Grenoble, France
Green Capital of Europe for 2022
With two rivers running through it and magnificent mountain ranges on the doorstep, Grenoble — Europe’s Green Capital for 2022 — is a big draw for eco-conscious, all-action, outdoorsy types. If canyoning and paragliding are your thing, you’ll fit right in. But the Capital of the Alps has cultural depth, as well, embodied in the Museum of Grenoble, stuffed with works by masters such as Monet, Canaletto and Klee, as well as a dynamic contemporary art scene.
Thanks to its university — the third-largest in France, with a reputation for excellence in microelectronics, nuclear physics and political studies — Grenoble nurtures clear-thinking problem-solvers. Crammed into a valley, the city would suffer from overcrowding and pollution were it not for its sustainable urban plan, combining cycle lanes, pedestrian streets, speed limits and efficient public transport.
From National Geographic Traveller UK (Emma Gregg)
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Fishermen at the Saint George branch of the mighty Danube River, Dobruja, Romania.
1. Danube River
Take a cruise through storybook land
Boating the Danube can seem like travelling through a realm of fairytales, with its scrolling views of castles, medieval towns and stately palaces that help to bring European history vividly to life. The river twists through 10 countries, and most Danube cruise itineraries include stops in at least four of those, with special family sailings featuring child-friendly onshore activities.
School lessons focusing on Middle Ages feudalism take on vivid dimensions when exploring Veste Oberhaus in Passau, Germany, one of the largest surviving castle complexes in Europe. Ages-old Hungarian equestrian traditions come alive on a southern Hungarian ranch, where fearless csikós, or mounted herdsmen, ride standing upright, balancing on the backs of two galloping horses.
From National Geographic Traveler Romania (Maryellen Kennedy Duckett)
Go with Nat Geo: Ready to plan your trip? Nat Geo Expeditions offers an 8-day Danube River Cruise to enjoy the European Christmas markets this winter
2. Eastern Shore, Maryland
Discover the marshlands that shaped Harriet Tubman
The history of the Underground Railroad flows through the waterways, wetlands, swamps and tidal marshes of Dorchester County on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. This is where the secret network’s most famous ‘conductor’, Harriet Tubman, was born enslaved, grew up and honed the skills — such as trapping, hunting and navigating by the stars — she used to escape to freedom in Pennsylvania. She then returned 13 times to rescue more than 70 enslaved friends and family. Her heroic story is told at the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center, one of the more than 30 stops along the 125-mile Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway.
From National Geographic Travel US (Maryellen Kennedy Duckett)
Dive into one of the oldest marine reserves in the world
Dazzling sunlight, a turquoise sea, palm trees, white beaches and a laid-back atmosphere: Bonaire ticks all the boxes for an idyllic tropical destination. But compared to many other Caribbean islands, Bonaire (population 21,000) is quiet and still relatively wild and unspoiled. And off its coast lies one of the oldest marine reserves in the world.
The Bonaire National Marine Park was established in 1979 and has been on the provisional UNESCO World Heritage List since 2011. The reserve encompasses 6,672 acres of coral reef, seagrass and mangrove vegetation. Bonaire’s healthy reefs are a magnet for divers and snorkellers who can spot up to 57 species of coral and more than 350 different fish species.
From National Geographic Traveler Netherlands (Barbera Bosma)
4. Granada, Spain
Marvel at the geometric beauty of the Alhambra
Built as a palace-city by 13th-century Nasrid sultans — rulers of the longest-lasting and last Muslim dynasty on the Iberian Peninsula — the Alhambra (‘red fort’) is considered the Moorish architectural jewel of Europe. The almond-shaped profile of this UNESCO World Heritage site rests on a hill above Granada, one of the most picturesque cities in Spain.
But it’s the mathematical wizardry on display here that’s particularly fascinating for families. Intricate mosaics, arabesques (a repetitive, stylised pattern based on a floral or vegetal design) and muqarnas (ornamental vaulting) make the Alhambra a masterpiece of geometric beauty — and a colourful classroom for age-appropriate exploration of maths concepts, such as shapes, symmetry, proportion and measurement.
From Viajes National Geographic Spain (Manuel Mateo Pérez)
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5. Lycia, Turkey
Learn about nomadic life in the sunny Mediterranean
The nomadic yörüks, originally from different Turkic groups that ranged from the Balkans to Iran, once roamed the plateaus of the Turkish riviera. Most of the yörüks (literally ‘walkers’) have now settled down — but many of their thousand-year-old customs are alive and well. Located in the historical Lycia region in southwestern Anatolia, Teke Peninsula is one of the spots where yörük culture remains strong. Teke yörüks live a semi-nomadic life with their tents, kilim rugs, herds, shepherd dogs, and transhumant traditions, set against a mountainous, Mediterranean backdrop full of olive trees. In recent years, tour companies have started to merge the marvels of Lycia with yörük life.
From National Geographic Traveler Turkey (Onur Uygun)
6. Nottinghamshire, UK
Robin Hood country gets a revamp
Fresh from an exciting £30 million revamp, the 400-year-old Nottingham Castle has thrown open its sturdy wooden gates again and is bigger than and better than ever. The highlight is a permanent new exhibition dedicated to Robin Hood and his fellow Nottingham rebels, with the focus on interactive fun including storytelling and ballads in a mocked-up forest clearing, as well as longbow-firing, digital archery competitions and sparring with Little John in the beautifully designed gaming spaces.
Throw in some caves to explore, along with vast grounds in which to run amok, with family trails, seasonal events and a fantastic new family adventure playground, and you have all the makings of brilliant day out combing fun and learning in equal measure.
From National Geographic Traveller UK (Rhonda Carrier)
7. Hadrian’s Wall, UK
The UK re-frames its ancient Roman frontier as its big attraction
A simultaneous celebration of the ancient and new, this UNESCO-listed structure — which was begun in AD 122 and formed the north-west frontier of the Roman empire for nearly 300 years — marks its 1,900th birthday in 2022 with a year-long festival of special events and activities. Think live outdoor performances, historic reenactments, sunset music sessions, an illuminated garden, thought-provoking outdoor art installations, compelling talks and even a Roman Big Birthday Bash. And all this spread across the entire 73-mile length of this coast-to-coast route, in all three counties that it crosses: Northumberland, Cumbria and Tyne & Wear. And, this year, the region gets a big injection of cash: £30m in government and charity funding to improve transport links and upgrade visitor centres.
From National Geographic Traveller UK (Rhonda Carrier)
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A golden-fronted woodpecker eats a papaya in the Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary, Belize.
Get a front row seat to tropical wildlife
Nature scored a big win recently in the race to preserve one of the largest remaining tropical rainforests in the Americas. In April 2021, a coalition of conservation partners, led by the Nature Conservancy, purchased 236,000 acres of tropical forest in northwestern Belize to create the Belize Maya Forest Reserve. Along with saving some of the most biodiverse forest in the world from denuding and development, the new protected area, which is contiguous with the neighbouring Rio Bravo Conservation Management Area (RBCMA), closes a huge gap in a vital wildlife corridor that runs from southeast Mexico through Guatemala and into Belize.
From National Geographic Travel US (Maryellen Kennedy Duckett)
2. Northern Minnesota
Turn off the lights in dark-sky country
Thousands upon thousands of stars dazzle above northern Minnesota. This remote region bordering the Canadian province of Ontario has little to no light pollution, and residents are determined to keep it that way.
The Heart of the Continent Dark Sky Initiative is a cross-border effort to create one of the largest dark-sky destinations on the planet. Two of its biggest pieces are in Minnesota: Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW), the world’s largest International Dark Sky Sanctuary at more than a million acres; and neighbouring Voyageurs National Park, the state’s first International Dark Sky Park. Both wild places received dark-sky certification in 2020 and Ontario’s Quetico Provincial Park, which adjoins BWCAW, earned International Dark Sky Park status in early 2021.
From National Geographic Travel US (Maryellen Kennedy Duckett)
Point yourself to the next great safari destination
Namibia evokes images of deserts, immense dunes and parched mountains. But the Caprivi Strip, a narrow finger of land that juts out toward the east in the extreme north of the country, is a green, wildlife-rich territory, thanks to the presence of the Okavango, Kwando, Chobe and Zambezi Rivers, which create the ideal habitat for numerous animal species.
During the second half of the 20th century, the area was the scene of intense military activity. Remote and difficult to access, it was the ideal corridor for various armed groups. After Namibia gained independence in 1990, peace — and wildlife driven away by fighting — gradually returned.
From National Geographic Traveler Italy (Marco Cattaneo)
4. Lake Baikal, Russia
Trail-build at the world’s biggest freshwater lake
Baikal is so vast and deep that locals regularly refer to it a sea. Covering around 12,200sq miles and with an average depth of 2,442ft, the massive lake is a natural wonder. It’s also in serious trouble. Despite being named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996, ongoing pollution, the recent weakening of government protections, and new threats, such as large-scale tourism development, caused the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) to deem the environmental World Heritage Outlook of Lake Baikal of ‘significant concern’ in 2020.
Visitors can help safeguard the lake and its wide array of landscapes — including tundra, steppe, boreal forest and virgin beaches — by volunteering with Great Baikal Trail (GBT), the nonprofit environmental group creating a hiking route around the lake.
From National Geographic Traveler Russia (Victoria Meleshko)
5. Victoria, Australia
Spot unique Australian wildlife along the Great Ocean Road
Green shoots of regeneration are appearing in Australia, where some 72,000sq miles were burned during the 2019-2020 bushfires, leading to the deaths of at least 34 people and more than a billion animals.
Playing its own role in these rejuvenation efforts, Wildlife Wonders, in Victoria’s Otways region, is a new wildlife sanctuary with a mission. Tucked away off the Great Ocean Road amid lush ancient forest and waterfalls, it’s the brainchild of Brian Massey — the landscape designer of New Zealand’s Hobbiton experience — who, alongside botanists, scientists, zoologists, and environmental specialists, has crafted a sinuous wooden path that winds through the refuge and blends seamlessly into the landscape.
From National Geographic Traveller UK (Connor McGovern)
6. Kent, UK
Bison in the Kent countryside and rewilding success stories nationwide
When Kent Wildlife Trust and the Wildwood Trust set out to hire the UK’s first bison rangers in early 2021, more than 1,000 applications flooded in. Successful candidates Tom Gibbs and Donovan Wright have an exciting task ahead: in spring 2022, they’re managing the reintroduction of four European bison, bred by the European Endangered Species Programme, to Blean Woods near Canterbury, an ancient reserve of coppiced chestnut, birch and oak.
Hunted to extinction in Britain thousands of years ago, bison are forest architects: by rubbing against trunks and eating bark, they cause weak trees to tumble, allowing multiple plant and animal species to thrive. Once the hefty foursome has settled in, Donovan — who previously led Big Five walking safaris in Africa — will use his skills to help visitors respectfully approach them on foot.
From National Geographic Traveller UK (Emma Gregg)
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Downtown Atlanta as seen from the city’s Centennial Olympic Park, Georgia, US.
1. Atlanta, Georgia
Be inspired by a southern US city rising to meet the moment
At a time when voting rights are in contention in the United States, Atlanta is flexing its cultural and political muscle through two formidable voter empowerment organisations: The New Georgia Project and Fair Fight Action, both founded by Atlanta-based political leader and activist Stacey Abrams.
Being at the forefront of social change isn’t new, says city native Bem Joiner, co-founder of the creative agency Atlanta Influences Everything. “Atlanta’s ‘special sauce’ is its three Cs: civic, corporate and cultural. We’re the cradle of the Civil Rights Movement, the home of Coca-Cola and our hip-hop culture shapes global culture. There’s nowhere else quite like Atlanta.”
From National Geographic Travel US (Maryellen Kennedy Duckett)
2. Hokkaido, Japan
Find the flip side to anime-filled Japan
Marginalised since the late 1800s, the indigenous Ainu people from the northern region of the Japanese archipelago, were finally granted legal status in Japan in 2019. But while the country’s new Ainu Promotion Act recognises and bans discrimination against the Ainu — who now reside mainly on Hokkaido, Japan’s wildly scenic and northernmost main island — it does little to directly help them, indigenous activists say. That could change in the future, however, as more Japanese and international visitors travel to Hokkaido to learn about Ainu culture at Upopoy, the new National Ainu Museum and Park complex, opened in 2020.
From National Geographic Travel US (Maryellen Kennedy Duckett)
3. Procida, Italy
Connect with Italy’s Capital of Culture
Chosen pre-pandemic, the theme of Procida’s winning bid as the Italian Capital of Culture 2022 — La cultura non isola (Culture doesn’t isolate) — now seems particularly on point. The island city, located 40 minutes southwest of Naples via high-speed ferry, plans to use its year in the spotlight to illustrate the importance of culture, particularly in times of uncertainty.
Procida 2022 plans to spread cultural programming — such as contemporary art exhibitions, festivals and performances — over 300 days to encourage responsible travel throughout the year, and to avoid a mass influx of summer visitors. In the spotlight as a symbol of the inclusive theme is the island’s Palazzo d’Avalos, a Renaissance palace-turned-prison, built in 1500 and closed in 1988.
From National Geographic Travel US (Maryellen Kennedy Duckett)
4. Tin Pan Alley, London
Make some noise in the birthplace of British punk rock
Despite pushback from punk and rock purists, the remix of Denmark Street, former hub of the British music industry, promises to hit all the right notes. Once lined with music publishers, recording studios, rehearsal rooms and dimly lit clubs, the tiny street, nicknamed London’s Tin Pan Alley, helped launch the British punk rock movement and legends like David Bowie, Elton John and the Rolling Stones. In recent years, the music had all but died, save for Denmark Street’s surviving guitar shops. Now this iconic slice of music history is being revived as part of Outernet London, the West End’s new £1bn immersive entertainment district.
From National Geographic Travel US (Maryellen Kennedy Duckett)
5. Jingmai Mountain, Yunnan, China
Be transported by tea
One of the oldest cultural landscapes in China is slated to become one of the country’s newest UNESCO World Heritage Sites in 2022. The Ancient Tea Plantations of Jingmai Mountain in Pu’er, which collectively form the world’s largest ancient artificially cultivated tea plantation, features over one million tea trees, the oldest of which is 1,400 years old.
Located in the remote southwestern corner of China’s Yunnan Province, the region was a starting point of the legendary Ancient Tea Horse Road. This 11th-century network of routes was named for its primary purpose: trading Chinese tea for Tibetan horses (60kg of tea equalled one horse).
From National Geographic Traveler China (Yi Lu, and Regina Zhuoqing Li)
6. Oslo, Norway
Fjord City gets a marvellous make-over
Fjord City, an urban renewal project reimagining of Oslo’s waterfront, is making the city’s cultural sites and scenic, 62-mile-long Oslo Fjord more accessible to all. The massive transformation, slated to be finished by 2030, has so far moved highways underground and repurposed industrial sites to create a seamless transition between the city and the fjord. A pedestrian- and wheelchair-friendly promenade stretches nearly six miles along the new-look harbourside, which is bookended by the Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art to the west and the Oslo Opera House to the east, where visitors can walk on the sloped roof to look out over the water.
From National Geographic Travel US (Maryellen Kennedy Duckett)
7. Rome, Italy
A hip new chapter for the Eternal City
They call it the Eternal City, but that doesn’t mean Rome is stuck in the past. For starters, a hit squad of cult international hotel chains has parachuted in post-pandemic, choosing to set up in residential areas where tourists rarely tread. Soho House opened in autumn 2021 behind the train station in the San Lorenzo district. On that same, eastern side of the city is The Hoxton, Rome, which has already brought London chic to the elegant Parioli district.
Closer to the centre, the W Rome opened in November just off Via Veneto, aiming for a dolce vita vibe. On the other side of the Tiber is perhaps the most exciting of all: Mama Shelter Roma, in the Prati district, which occupies two modernist former office blocks, both listed buildings.
From National Geographic Traveller UK (Julia Buckley)
8. Cairo, Egypt
A grand museum opening, a film launch, and more, put Cairo in the spotlight
Egypt’s capital will shine under a bright spotlight in 2022. Hollywood is releasing a much-anticipated adaptation of Agatha Christie’s Death on the Nile, featuring an all-star cast that includes Kenneth Branagh and Gal Gadot. It also marks 100 years since Howard Carter discovered Tutankhamun’s tomb; Jean-François Champollion deciphered the Rosetta Stone, unlocking the meaning of hieroglyphs; and the country celebrated semi-independence from British Rule.
Linking them all is the hotly anticipated opening of the Grand Egyptian Museum. Slated to be the largest museum in the world dedicated to one civilisation, this mega-sized, £600m complex, located two miles from the Giza pyramids, will exhibit the complete contents — around 5,000 items — of King Tut’s tomb.
From National Geographic Traveller UK (Emma Thomson)
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New Brunswick, Canada.
1. New Brunswick, Canada
Tackle the longest backcountry trail in the Canadian Maritimes
The Nepisiguit Falls, in the Canadian province of New Brunswick, are one of many stops along a millennia-old First Nations migration route, which has been developed into the longest backcountry hiking trail in the Canadian Maritimes. Running 93 miles along the Nepisiguit River, the rugged Sentier Nepisiguit Mi’gmaq Trail follows ancient portage pathways used by the nomadic Mi’gmaq. The route begins at sea level at Daly Point Nature Reserve in Bathurst and ends at Bathurst Lake in Mount Carleton Provincial Park, home to 2,690ft Mount Carleton, the highest peak in the Maritimes. To promote respect for the relevance of the trail to the Mi’gmaq people, the route’s restoration, completed in 2018, incorporates Mi’gmaq language and culture.
From National Geographic Travel US (Maryellen Kennedy Duckett)
2. Costa Rica
Go on a coast-to-coast trek
Stretching across Costa Rica from the Caribbean to the Pacific, El Camino de Costa Rica is a 174 -mile window into life far off the well-trod tourist path. The 16-stage hiking route primarily follows public roads as it passes through remote villages and towns, Indigenous Cabecar lands, and protected natural areas. It’s designed to spark economic activity in rural districts. Local families, nonprofits, and a network of micro-entrepreneurs, provide most of the lodging, food, tours and other hiker amenities available on the trail, such as Ecomiel honey and La Cabaña sustainable coffee.
From National Geographic Traveler Korea (Maryellen Kennedy Duckett)
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3. River Seine, France
Cycle a new scenic route from Paris to the English Channel
La Seine à Vélo is a new cycling trail picturesque enough for French painter Claude Monet himself, whose former house and famous water lilies in Giverny are on the route. But the 270-mile Paris-to-the-sea path, which opened in October 2020, offers lesser-known masterpieces too, such as the colourful street art that brightens the Canal Saint-Denis in Paris.
Along the trail’s 15 stages, bikers also pass through protected natural areas, including Normandy’s Grande Noé Bird Reserve, located along a major migratory flyway. While rolling across Normandy, they can visit the ruins of Jumièges Abbey, founded in 654, and take a Benedictine monk-led tour of Abbaye Saint-Wandrille, a centuries-old working abbey.
From National Geographic Traveler France (Gabriel Joseph-Dezaize)
4. Arapahoe Basin, Colorado
Reach a Rocky Mountain high
For unparalleled views of the Continental Divide, one must climb hand over foot up North America’s highest via ferrata. A climbing route comprised of metal rungs and cables, Arapahoe Basin’s Iron Way begins at the base of granite Rocky Mountain cliffs and ascends nearly 1,200ft to a 13,000ft summit. A glance below reveals a weathered Colorado landscape dotted with green moss and pink and purple flora, and rock gardens created by the cliffs themselves, their fallen chunks varying from pebble- to car-sized. Climbers scale the cliffs using the metal rungs while also gripping the rock or wedging a foot into a crack for leverage.
From National Geographic Travel US (Shauna Farnell)
Go shark diving in the Pacific
Step off the plane at Palau International Airport and the stamp in your passport will include the Palau Pledge, which all visitors must sign, promising that ‘the only footprints I shall leave are those that will wash away’. The 59-word eco-pledge was drafted by and for the children of this remote western Pacific archipelago to help protect Palau’s culture and environment from the negative impacts of tourism.
Some 80% of Palau’s waters is preserved as the Palau National Marine Sanctuary. At 193,000sq miles, the sanctuary is one of the world’s largest protected marine areas, safeguarding more than 700 species of coral and 1,300 species of fish, including a dazzling array of sharks.
From National Geographic Traveler India (Maryellen Kennedy Duckett)
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6. Taghazout, Morocco
Enjoy the ride in one of North Africa’s best surfing spots
With waves, dunes and ramps to ride and a traditional souk to explore, finding an active pursuit in Morocco’s surf capital, Taghazout, is no problem. A favourite of European backpackers and surfers, the former fishing village on the country’s southwestern Atlantic Coast isn’t under the radar anymore (there’s a Hyatt Place resort and the luxury Fairmont Taghazout Bay opened in July 2021), yet it remains charmingly laid-back and local. Surf season is October to April, when a consistent northwest swell creates quality waves at reef, point and beach breaks such as postcard pretty Panorama, a sheltered, sandy-bottom break ideal for beginners.
From National Geographic Travel US (Maryellen Kennedy Duckett)
A new UNESCO listing for Chankillo
Six hours north of Lima, in Peru’s largely undiscovered north, stand 13 time-worn mounds spread across a hillside like the ridged backbone of a dinosaur. More than 2,300 years old, these towers form the oldest astronomical observatory in the Americas and in July 2021 were inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Thor Heyerdahl mentions them in his classic travelogue Kon-Tiki, but hypotheses about their use weren’t formalised until 2007. Located in the already-archaeological-rich Casma-Sechín river basin, this pre-Incan 300-metre-long chain of towers allowed the sun-worshipping inhabitants to observe the sunrise and sunset and calculate the exact date to within one or two days — staggering for the time — to plan their planting and harvesting seasons, as well as religious festivals.
From National Geographic Traveller UK (Emma Thomson)
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The 50 most beautiful places in the world 2021
The bucket list destinations to tick off your list
By Katharine Sohn
What is the most beautiful place on earth? On a planet home to flamingo-pink lakes in Mexico, plus vast, multi-coloured hills in the USA, green ripples of rice paddies in Indonesia and epic icescapes in Antarctica, it’s hard to choose a favourite – but why pick one? From countries all around the world, these are our top 50 most beautiful places to visit.
SHARK BAY, AUSTRALIA
The most westerly point on mainland Australia is this UNESCO World Heritage Site. It was founded before Captain Cook discovered land at Botany Bay, with Dutch explorers touching down here in the 17th century. The area is diverse – there’s a beach made up entirely of tiny white shells, stromatolites on the shore of Hamelin Pool and the salt mine at Useless Loop, which produces the purest grade of salt in the world and is only accessible via four-by-four – or visible from the sky.
A small seaside town in the Ica region of Peru, Paracas is where the desert meets the sea. A trip to the area isn’t complete without a boat ride to Islas Ballestas, the rocky islands off the Pacific coast known for their diverse wildlife including flocks of sea lions and crowds of baby penguins.
The red-cliff coastline and pristine whitewashed Moorish villages that dot the south-western region of Portugal have started shifting crowds away from the region’s busier hotspots. It has its own sunny microclimate and affordable places to stay such as Casa Mãe in Lagos make it a great winter-sun option too.
With its striking architecture, grand boulevards, world-class art, jewel-box patisseries and classic places to stay, this is a city that never sleeps. Its unrivalled food scene is best experienced by stumbling upon corner bistros down cobbled streets.
HÒA BÌNH, VIETNAM
Vietnamese for peace, Hòa Bình province is located in the north of the country and is home to hill tribes including the Hmong, Muong and Dzao, plus endless rice fields.
SARAKINIKO BEACH, MILOS, GREECE
Off-radar Milos has some of the best beaches in the Aegean without the buzz of Mykonos or Santorini. Moon-like Sarakiniko is made up of mounds of undulating bone-white, wave-like volcanic rock and forms one of the island’s most mesmerising bays.
Tom Parker / White Desert
The most extreme continent on earth is also the coldest, windiest, driest and most inhospitable to forms of life. Pristine and practically untouched, no one lives in Antarctica full time, apart from seals, penguins and marine life. It’s as remote as one can get.
DEATH VALLEY, CALIFORNIA
Known as the hottest place on earth, Death Valley reached a record temperature of 53°C in 2019. It’s a vast area of extremes: with snowy peaks, scorching sands and wildflower meadows, the National Park encompasses a wide range of different landscapes. One of the most popular locations is the multi-hued Artists Palette, a series of eroded hills whose colouring is due to the oxidation of natural metal deposits in the mountains. ‘Star Wars’ fans will be keen to see the site that inspired the planet Tatooine.
In summer, endless fields of lavender in bloom turn the Provençal landscape purple. At the end of the season, when the crop is harvested, honey, soaps and pastries are made with a fragrant dose of the plant.
Built in honour of one of Cambodia’s most famous kings, Jayavarman VII, Bayon is a 12th-century state temple that’s a unique architectural feat in the heart of Angkor Thom. Fifty-four gothic towers carved with 216 gargantuan smiling faces of Avalokiteshvara – the bodhisattva of compassion – fill the temple, and the design showcases the shift from Hinduism to Mahayana Buddhism. With Angkor Wat not far away, Bayon, its off-the-beaten track little sister, is a close second in popularity.
GRAND TETON NATIONAL PARK, JACKSON HOLE, WYOMING
The famous three peaks of the National Park are among Wyoming’s most recognisable sights, the Grand forming the highest point of the range. It’s a hike on many pro adventurers’ list, but for newbies looking for an outdoors excursion floating down the Snake River or mountain-biking through the 310,000-acre landscape are viable options, too. Top it off with supper at Snake River Grill in Jackson’s town centre and an overnight stay at the cliff-side Amangani.
ANGEL FALLS, VENEZUELA
The world’s highest waterfall, with 3,212ft cascades, is located in the UNESCO-protected Canaima National Park and was the inspiration for the Disney film ‘Up’. The site is only accessible by boat or plane.
A gateway to the East, Kyrgyzstan has natural beauty. Unspoilt pine forests, rocky ridges and rolling jailoos (summer pastures) are typical of the country. In the warmer months visitors flock to glacial lakes, while in winter a stay with semi-nomadic shepherds is an experience unlike any other.
GRAND CANAL, VENICE
The 12,500ft-long canal runs straight through the centre and has inspired numerous artists including Canaletto, Monet and JMW Turner. Flanked by buildings dating from the 12th to the 17th centuries, it’s the grandest waterway in the Floating City.
HWANGE NATIONAL PARK, ZIMBABWE
Hwange has a greater diversity of mammals than any national park in the world and is the largest natural reserve in Zimbabwe. The size of Belgium, it is home to more than 50,000 elephants and 500 species of bird. The wet-season winter months are the best time to see migratory birds or book an off-season safari when the park gets fewer visitors.
A third of Mongolia is covered in desert, and while it’s the 18th-largest country in the world, its three million inhabitants make it the most sparsely populated. Visitors can go local: riding horses, helping to look after livestock and sleeping in a herder’s ger – a traditional felt yurt.
LAKE EYRE, AUSTRALIA
This salt lake constitutes the lowest point on the continent. Normally dry due to evaporated water, with its salt-deposit haze, the body only fills completely twice every 100 years on average.
Jack Johns and Owen Tozer
Minutes from scooter-buzzing Ubud are artsy, low-key villages, vivid green rice paddies, lush forests and vast jungles. Bali is one of Indonesia’s 17,000 islands and sees an average temperature of about 30°C year round. Explore by bicycle and then head to one of its many cool beach clubs.
SEVEN SISTERS COUNTRY PARK, EAST SUSSEX, UK
Britain’s unspoilt south coast is home to one of the country’s greatest walking trails and seaside parks, the Seven Sisters. Made up of 280 hectares of chalk cliffs, a winding river valley and flat top grasslands with views of the English Channel, the coastal path begins near Eastbourne, the start of the 100-mile South Downs Way.
ATACAMA DESERT, SOUTH AMERICA
On a route made famous by revolutionary Che Guevara who kicked off his motorcycle journey in Buenos Aires, head down to Chile through the Atacama Desert into the Peruvian Amazon and up to Venezuela. Vast expanses of sandy flats quickly roll into high tops of dunes and gorges leading to plateaus of dusty grass. It’s a trip for explorers, with the Andes standing tall above the Argentine–Chile border, blurring one side into the other. NASA even uses the desert as a testing ground for future Mars missions.
MOUNT FUJI, JAPAN
Fuji-san, the tallest peak in Japan, is a sacred mountain and symbol. On a clear day, it can be seen from Tokyo, but one of the best ways to view the still-active volcano is by taking the shinkansen bullet train from the capital to Osaka (top tip: sit on the right-hand side for the best views). Surrounding areas Hakone (where there are natural hot springs) and Fujigoko are worth visiting during cherry-blossom season.
Kim & Nash Finley
JAIPUR AND THE HAWA MAHAL PALACE, JAIPUR, RAJASTHAN
The largest city in Rajasthan is filled to the brim with buzzing bazaars, sacred lakes and gilded royal palaces – the decadent 18th-century royal-owned Rajmahal Palace is a smart hotel. Among the famously rosy-hued buildings of the Pink City, the honeycomb-like Hawa Mahal, or Palace of the Winds, is surely the most recognisable of all. The incredible sandstone structure has 953 small exterior windows (called jharokhas) decorated with intricate lattice work.
SKELETON COAST, NAMIBIA
The Namib Desert is the oldest in the world, and in the middle of its vast Skeleton Coast are endless miles of stone and sand, dry riverbeds and dunes. Desert-adapted animals here include elephant, giraffe, lion, brown hyaena and Cape fur seals that thrive in the area.
THE SCOTTISH HIGHLANDS
It’s a few hours from buzzing Edinburgh, not far from the Cairngorms, to the start of the eastern Highlands. Stretching around Skye, around the North Coast 500 route up to the village of John O’ Groats, the region is also home to the tallest mountain in the British Isles, Ben Nevis. There’s natural beauty everywhere, from babbling Fairy Pools and big-horned cattle to clear coastal waters and snowy mountain caps.
Meaning cotton castle in Turkish, this natural wonder is made up of layers of white travertine terraces of ice-blue spa pools. It’s also next to the site of the well-preserved ruins of Hierapolis, the Greek-Roman city established in the 2nd century BC.
Stretching over eight countries – France, Switzerland, Monaco, Italy, Liechtenstein, Austria, Germany and Slovenia – the Alps are the most extensive mountain range in Europe. It has some of the greatest skiing in the world with popular towns including Chamonix-Mont-Blanc (the highest mountain), Lech, Gstaad and Courchevel.
BAZARUTO ARCHIPELAGO, MOZAMBIQUE
This archipelago of five islands – Bazaruto, the largest, Benguerra, Magaruque, Santa Carolina and the smallest Bangue – was once part of a peninsula connected to the mainland but now, when the Indian Ocean retreats at low tide, swirls and ripples of white sand become visible. A protected marine park, its waters are rich in manta rays, schools of dolphins, hawksbill turtles and dugongs (cousins of equally curious manatees).
OJOS DEL MAR, BOLIVIA
Six turquoise waterholes lie within the salty plains of Ojos del Mar in the Tolar Grande region of Bolivia. Inhabited by stromatolites (deposits formed by algae) and microorganisms, the water can change slightly in colour, depending on the angle of the sun, from bright blue to seafoam green.
MT. COOK, NEW ZEALAND
Home to the tallest mountain in New Zealand, the Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park, part of the Te Wāhipounamu World Heritage Site on the South Island, is a mountaineer’s dream. More than 40 per cent of the area is covered in glaciers, with the largest and longest named the Tasman Glacier. It was here that Sir Edmund Hillary trained for the first momentous ascent of Mount Everest.
One of the Luberon’s most striking hilltop hamlets, Gordes stands tall on the edge of the Vaucluse plateau. With views across the surrounding region of Provence, the quintessential medieval town is a must-visit. A stay at Bastide de Gordes, the village’s most glamorous hotel, will make the trip complete.
EMERALD LAKE, BRITISH COLUMBIA, CANADA
Easily one of the Canadian Rockies’ most recognisable landmarks, Emerald Lake is located within Yoho National Park in British Columbia. Backed by the towering mountain peaks of the President Range, in summer the clear glacial water is ideal for canoeing and attempting a quick swim.
THE FAROE ISLANDS
The self-governed group of 18 volcanic islands makes up this remote archipelago where sheep outnumber humans. Grass-lined houses, craggy coastlines and lush waterfalls are all part of the Nordic landscape but there’s a surprising food scene too.
Modern high-rise buildings meet period architecture in retro Hong Kong, one of the most densely populated cities in the world. It’s a street-food capital where eating dim sum like a local in an old teahouse is a mandatory experience. For the best views of the harbour, catch a Star Ferry or hike the hills of Ma On Shan, one of the summits that surround the city.
The magical, walled Blue City is a tangle of winding medieval streets. The monumental 15th-century Mehrangarh Fort, which is still run by the royal family and now serves as a museum, looks out over the old city and its mesh of box-shaped buildings, shops and bazaars.
ANTELOPE CANYON, ARIZONA
The Navajo name of this slot canyon translates to ‘the place where water runs through rocks’ and the narrow ravine is an American Southwest treasure, filled with ripples of eroded stone formations, and sunlight creating orange filters and bright patterns.
This Arctic archipelago, about a three-hour flight north of Oslo, has one of the harshest environments on the planet. Nearly two-thirds of it is protected and the islands are made up of bird sanctuaries, nature reserves and national parks where polar bears roam. The Northern Lights can be seen in the winter and in the summer, when the temperature tops out at 6°C, the sun doesn’t go below the horizon.
The forward-thinking capital of Scandi cool appeals to foodies, design junkies and a cool young crowd. With its ground-breaking food scene, including world-famous Noma (and Noma 2.0), it’s a city to be taken seriously. Colourful buildings dot the central Nyhavn port, but it’s worth exploring alternative community Christiania, quirky Vesterbro and hipster Nørrebro, too.
Jack Johns and Owen Tozer
The old town of Lamu, on the Indian Ocean island of the same name, was established in the 14th century. Now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the port city is a mish-mash of cultures – Swahili, Asian, Arabic, European – while along the laid-back coast majestic dhows sail by all day long.
More than 3,000 narrow, quartz-sandstone pillars make up Wulingyuan Scenic and Historic Interest Area in the Hunan Province. These natural wonders, many higher than 656ft, are broken up by ravines, gorges, caves and waterfalls. It’s easy to see why the UNESCO World Heritage Site was James Cameron’s inspiration for Avatar.
REDWOOD NATIONAL PARK, CALIFORNIA
Home to the world’s tallest trees, Redwood National Park, north of San Francisco, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and part of an International Biosphere Reserve that protects close to half of the planet’s old-growth redwoods – some of which are 370ft high. With more than 200 miles of trail routes, it’s ideal for camping, hiking and riding.
The crumbling façades of this island nation’s capital keep bringing in waves of travelling artists, rum fanatics and cigar smokers to the city. It’s where Hemingway wrote seven of his books and drank Mojitos at La Bodeguita del Medio. And with temperatures of 27°C in December, it’s an ideal winter-sun destination.
Considered to be the cultural centre of Japan, Kyoto is awash with ancient temples and shrines, serene teahouses and sublime gardens. The bright-orange Fushimi-inari, a shinto shrine in the hills, is a visual beauty. Grab an artisan coffee, taken very seriously in the traditional city, and make the two-hour pilgrimage through the shrine’s thousands of torii (gates). Other spots worth visiting include Gion, the home of the geishas, the golden pavilion of Kinkaku-ji and Nishiki market for street food or a traditional kaiseki feast at one of the city’s local restaurants.
The kaleidoscopic city may best be known for its market life, spice sellers and ancient medinas, but its reimagined riads, cool independent shops and contemporary art scene are giving it a modern edge. There are lots of places to discover – from Yves Saint Laurent’s restoration of cobalt-blue Jardin Majorelle to the smoky street-food stalls in Jemaa el-Fna.
A quick ferry ride from Naples, the island of Ischia – famed for its thermal spas and unshowy local life – is a tumble of fishing villages and beaches that match Amalfi but without the crowds.
The Old City, sacred to a number of religions, blends grand design with places of prayer. Dome of the Rock on the Temple Mount is one of the oldest extant works of Islamic architecture. Meanwhile the Kotel, also known as the Western Wall, is a must-visit for any first-timer and is considered to be the holiest site in the Jewish faith.
BONDI ICEBERGS, AUSTRALIA
Bondi Icebergs might easily be the most famous pool in the world. The Olympic-size structure has been standing on the southern end of Bondi Beach for more than 100 years. It’s not heated or chlorinated, but filled with seawater, with the Tasman Sea crashing against its edge.
The Philippines has more than 7,000 islands – about 5,000 of which are uninhabited – where roughly 175 languages are spoken. For diving, El Nido is the ideal spot with crystal-clear water and vibrant marine life.
ARASHIYAMA BAMBOO FOREST, JAPAN
About 20 minutes outside Kyoto’s city centre is the atmospheric Arashiyama bamboo forest. Arrive at around 7am to avoid the crowds and get a chance to see and feel the wood, as well as hear it creaking in the wind. Morning light is just as ethereal, too. Arabica coffee shop is nearby, overlooking Hozugawa River.
LAS COLORADAS, YUCATAN, MEXICO
The incredible pink lakes here make up part of the protected nature reserve of Ría Lagartos Biosphere on Mexico’s Yucatán peninsula. Red-coloured algae, plankton and brine shrimp that thrive in the waters not only turn the native flamingos pink but help produce 500,000 tons of salt per year.
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More from Condé Nast Traveller
National Geographic Announces ‘BEST OF THE WORLD 2022’ List, Unveiling 25 Extraordinary Places and Communities To Inspire Your Next Trip
**Spokespeople and Visuals Available**
Photo by Paul Sutherland, Nat Geo Image Collection
WASHINGTON (Nov. 18, 2021) – As international travel restrictions lift and the world slowly emerges from the pandemic, National Geographic today has revealed its annual list of the 25 must-see destinations for the next year. Profiling inspiring places, communities and experiences, this year’s list comes at a big moment. The pandemic has transformed when, where and how we see the world. With the return of travel, National Geographic is rethinking what it means to be a traveler and the impact of those choices. What remains unchanged is the organization’s commitment to travel stories that illuminate our beautiful world and the diversity of communities and people within it.
Framed by five categories—Nature, Adventure, Culture, Sustainability and Family—selections on the 2022 list honor national parks and wildlife, outdoor activities and experience, green travel and destinations going it right, and multigenerational destinations and journeys. From the “next great safari destination” of Caprivi, Namibia, to the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, to the ancient tea mountains and traditions of Yunnan, China, this year’s list is a reminder that there is much out there to inspire us. Moreover, this year’s list celebrates the 50th anniversary of the UNESCO World Heritage Convention, with 10 World Heritage-designated sites featured.
“While the pandemic stalled many of our travel plans for nearly two years, our appetite for new and impactful journeys has only grown. In many ways, the pandemic provided a moment for travelers and communities around the world to reflect and regroup on how we explore the world,” says George Stone, executive editor of National Geographic Travel. “With this year’s list, Nat Geo takes a look at what’s different, new, and inspiring—from the new Seine River bike trail in France to Chimanimani National Park, a new national park in Mozambique that signals the country’s environmental commitment. We’re excited to share these 25 extraordinary places that will define our upcoming itineraries.”
The list was created, researched, reported and written in collaboration with National Geographic Traveler’s international editorial teams, which serve millions of readers through their magazines and websites in more than a dozen offices around the world.
The “Best of the World 2022” list is available online now at NatGeo.com/BestOfTheWorld, where readers will be transported to each destination through spectacular photography and reporting. Additionally, on Instagram, Nat Geo is inviting social media users to share photos of places they consider to be the “best of the world” and tag them #BestOfTheWorldChallenge. Beginning Dec. 3, National Geographic’s @natgeoyourshot account will feature the team’s favorites.
Press materials, including stunning visuals of destinations, available HERE.
National Geographic’s “Best of the World 2022” list:
Jingmai Mountain, Yunnan, China (nominated by National Geographic Traveler China)*
Tin Pan Alley, London, England
Atlanta, Georgia, United States
Ruhr Valley, Germany (nominated by National Geographic Traveler Germany)
Parque Nacional Yasuni, Ecuador (nominated by National Geographic Traveler Latin America)*
Łódź, Poland (nominated by National Geographic Traveler Poland)*
National Columbia Gorge Scenic Area, Oregon/Washington, United States
Chimanimani National Park, Mozambique
Caprivi Strip, Namibia (nominated by National Geographic Traveler Italy)
Northern Minnesota, United States
Lake Baikal, Russia (nominated by National Geographic Traveler Russia)*
Belize Maya Forest Reserve
Victoria, Australia (nominated by National Geographic Traveller U. K.)
Seine River Bike Trail, France (nominated by National Geographic Traveler France)
Costa Rica (nominated by National Geographic Traveler Korea)
Nepisiguit Mi’gmaq Trail, New Brunswick, Canada
Palau (nominated by National Geographic Traveller India)*
Arapahoe Basin, Colorado, United States
Danube River Cruise (nominated by National Geographic Traveler Romania)*
Lycia, Turkey (nominated by National Geographic Traveler Turkey)*
Granada, Spain (nominated by Viajes National Geographic)*
Bonaire (nominated by National Geographic Traveler Netherlands)*
Eastern Shore, Maryland, United States
*UNESCO designated sites: Asterisk denotes UNESCO-designated status for this destination; 2022 marks the 50th anniversary of the World Heritage Convention.
National Geographic Partners
National Geographic Partners is a joint venture between The Walt Disney Company and the National Geographic Society. Every year, a portion of our net profits is distributed to the nonprofit Society to fund work in the areas of science, exploration, conservation, and education. This unique partnership creates a virtuous cycle of storytelling and exploration that inspires people to act, enlightens their perspective, and often provides the spark to new ideas and innovation. For more information, visit natgeotv.com or nationalgeographic.com, or find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn and Pinterest.
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National Geographic named the best places to travel
National Geographic named the best places to travel
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100 most beautiful places on the planet to see for the rest of your life
If you cannot decide where
go on a journey, a guide from Lifehacker
with the most beautiful places of our
the planet will help you.
In the checklist you will find natural objects and human creations,
popular resorts and places for extreme recreation.
We’ll talk about
waterfalls, lakes, forests, fountains, castles, canyons, islands, lagoons… These
amazing places worth seeing at least once in a lifetime.
Niagara Falls consists of
of three large streams: Horseshoe Falls («Horseshoe»), American Falls and
Bridleway («Veil»). It is very popular among tourists (during
largely due to the developed infrastructure). It’s not the highest waterfall
53 meters, but one of the most powerful — the volume of falling water reaches 5,700
maybe in bioluminescent phytoplankton? However, look at it
costs. A unique species of plankton that glows in the dark can be seen
only on the island of Vaadhoo. The waves crashing on the shore carry it away with them, and
the water begins to shimmer with hundreds, thousands of sparkling lights.
located in the northeastern part of Dakar and is known for its unusual color
water. The lake owes its color to algae, due to which the water acquires
rich color — from pale pink to scarlet. Also in the water is high
salt content, so you can stay afloat all the time, as in the Dead
Blue Lagoon —
geothermal spa resort just 40 km from Reykjavik. This place did not appear
by itself, but largely thanks to man: water from power plants,
supplying energy to the capital, accumulated on a lava plateau. As a result, in water
mineral salts, silica and blue-green algae appeared, which gave
her medicinal properties.
The hotel is located directly below
by the sea, at a depth of about 13 meters, in the very center of the lagoon. Each number is
a separate sealed capsule with an open view of the underwater world. Hotel
expensive, but guests are served at the highest level: there is a bar,
restaurant, gym and even a church for those who want to play
Thor’s well — part of Cape Perpetua — is a stone funnel that goes several meters deep. What is at the bottom of the Well is still unknown, scuba divers do not risk going down there — a strong current interferes. It is advisable to visit the funnel an hour before high tide: the water begins to quickly fill Thor’s Well, and then spectacularly shoots up a 6-meter fountain of spray.
Another name — «Heavenly
gate.» This is the highest cave, it was formed in 263 when
suddenly a large piece of the mountain just fell off, creating a huge cavity. To her
999 steps lead to the foot: according to legend, passing through them, you can reach
enlightenment and get closer to God. This is not possible for everyone, but in China,
apparently, they don’t like to disappoint tourists, so they made the longest in
the world’s funicular and the highest outdoor elevator. Above the cave is almost always possible
observe a cloud of fog, which gives it even more mystery.
more than 1,000 meters, Angel consists of two cascades and three levels. it
the highest waterfall in the world, the height of the continuous fall of water is 807 meters.
Before reaching the ground, the water is sprayed and turns into mist, which
can be felt from miles away. By the way, the name of the waterfall is not
not related to angels, it is named after American pilot James
Jacob’s well — natural
a well with underwater caves that attract divers from all over the world.
Scuba divers are not deterred even by the fact that this is not the safest place.
for diving. As, however, and tourists attracted by pure artesian
water and legends.
Glacial lake in the province
Alberta in Canada. It is surrounded by the Rocky Mountains, whose peaks are round
the year is covered with snow, and the slopes are covered with evergreen forests. This is the place to be active.
recreation: hiking, horse riding and cycling, golf, tennis, skiing
sports, mountaineering and dog sledding.
Valley of Fire — the oldest park
in the state of Nevada. In 1968, on the site of the Valley, a state
reserve, located on 42 thousand acres of land. Its name is Valley
received due to frequent sandstorms, which represent an impressive
spectacle. Some of the rocks in the park formed another 150 million
years ago. And on the rocks, drawings of ancient people — petroglyphs — have been preserved.
To see the Taj Mahal,
travel to the city of Agra, Uttar Pradesh in India. Name «Taj Mahal»
already speaks for itself — in translation from Persian it means «The Greatest
from palaces. Every year more people come to see this amazing place.
two million visitors is an impressive figure, isn’t it?
Islas hidden beach
Marietas, near the city of Puerto Vallarta, was formed from a funnel from
the explosion of a dropped bomb — the Mexican army conducted exercises. Only
imagine: you return home and tell everyone you know how
spent some perfect days in a bomb crater in Mexico. hidden beach
— it is pure white sand, clear water, few people and lively
Jose Guadalupe Carrillo/Flickr.com
located on the territory of three states at once: mostly in Wyoming, and
also in Idaho and Montana. The park is famous for its picturesque landscapes,
diverse wildlife and geysers. Here you can see the waterfalls
canyons, lakes and even a volcanic eruption. According to information from Wikipedia,
The park has 1,770 kilometers of marked trails — just imagine
how many routes can be taken.
border between two countries, Chile and Argentina. Marble Mountain is made up of caves,
which frame the blue water of the mountain lake General Carrera (it is
Buenos Aires). Tourists usually come here for unusual pictures and
Grand Canyon Age —
5–6 million years. This means that in the rocks you can find traces of both
at least four geological eras of our planet. With the depth of the canyon changes
temperature, and consequently, both flora and fauna. Here you can not only
see natural beauty. The Grand Canyon is a tourist destination
therefore, there is enough entertainment for visitors: starting from mule excursions and
ending with rafting on the Colorado River.
Mount Caillin reservoirs
otherwise called the Fay pools. It is best to visit them on a slightly cloudy day.
day, after a light rain — the water level will be higher than usual, the flow will not
will be so stormy, and thanks to the cloudiness, all the colors and shades of rocks and water
will be better visible.
Suspension bridges — probably
the only creation of human hands in this untouched corner of nature. flora and
fauna is striking in diversity: flying lizards, predatory flowers, orangutans and
even species not yet described by scientists. However, walking across the bridges that
creak and sway at a height of 40 meters, in the crowns of tropical
trees, will surely leave a much stronger impression.
consisting of 40,000 (!) basalt columns interconnected. And to
the most popular attraction in Northern Ireland and the facility
UNESCO World Heritage Site. The road of giants is the result of many years
volcano eruptions. Lava, slowly solidifying, turned into hexagonal
columns, the largest of which reaches 12 meters in height.
Black Beach — Panaluu —
formed as a result of volcanic activity. The beach is basically
is a mixture of lava and basalt, so the sand on the coast
saturated black. On the beach you can meet not only tourists, but also
many sea turtles, including the endangered hawksbill.
The Waitomo Caves are about
150 offshoots and limestone grottoes, many of which can be entered
only by boat. Scientists believe they are about two million years old. The most
a well-known and popular among tourists cave — Glowworm Grotto, whose vaults
often compared to the starry sky. All thanks to the huge number
fireflies Arachnocampa Luminosa, which can only be found in New
Donnie Ray Jones/Flickr.com
Flathead Lake in the state
Montana is the largest body of water in America, covering an area of 510
km². In addition, this is the most transparent lake in the world — it seems that it
shallow, but in fact its depth can reach 113 meters. This place
very popular among fishing enthusiasts, because in clear water there is always
very well seen fish — trout and perch.
To represent the length
this creation of human hands, imagine the pool at the Olympic
games, and then try to imagine 20 (!) such pools. It is built in
small town of Algarrobo in Chile. It is not only the longest pool, but
also the deepest.
Archbishop’s Bridge —
Petit Pont de l’Archevêché — place of pilgrimage for lovers
all over the world who come to him to hang locks — symbols of their
You may have heard about
famous ice hotel in Quebec. It is considered to be one of the most
romantic places on the planet, so hundreds (if not thousands) of couples annually
come here to get married. It is entirely made of 20 tons of snow.
and ice. Every year in December they begin to rebuild it so that at the beginning
January to receive the first guests. Which, by the way, is carried out before settling
instructions on how not to get frostbite while staying at the hotel.
Known as the City of Love,
Dalat in Vietnam is an incredibly romantic place. There are beautiful waterfalls
poetic landscapes, rich history and culture. And a special place among this
occupies the Pongour Falls. 100 meters wide and 40 meters high, Pongour consists
of 7 levels and flows into a small lake. Surrounded by a waterfall of 25 hectares
waterfalls. Another favorite worthy of a place on the list is the waterfall.
Mosbray in California. Water passing through volcanic stone walls,
gently flows — as a result, the stone is covered with a thick layer of moss.
The year-round flow makes the flora of this place very unusual.
There are many on our list
waterfalls, but not to mention Baatar. He impresses not only with his
height (255 meters, by the way). Baatara passes through three natural
bridge, formed in the Jurassic period. Therefore, the waterfall has another
The name is Cave of Three Bridges.
See an unusual rock
can be on the north coast of the South East Island in New Zealand,
close to Tasman Bay. Granite rock is really in shape
resembles an apple that has been carefully cut into two halves with a knife.
Thousands of tourists come here to take impressive pictures with the rock,
reminiscent of the scenery for a movie about giants.
Caño Cristales local
the inhabitants call the river of five colors — the water glides over colorful mosses, and
a complete illusion is created that the river is painted in different colors of the rainbow. Better
only to come here from the end of July to December, when the river is especially
bright. In addition, here you can see 420 different types of birds, 8 species
primates and 10 special varieties of amphibians. The locals realized
how attractive their land is for tourists, and now spend
Horstail is in the state
Oregon, USA, and represents two small streams that, meeting,
form one big one. Between the lower and upper levels, you can find a track and
get closer to the water. Nearby there is a campsite for lovers
Wai-o-Tapu opened in 1931
year and since then remains a favorite tourist destination. They say they come
here, you will noticeably improve your health. Here you can see
multi-colored reservoirs (for example, a champagne pond), a mud pool and a geyser,
which in the morning begins to beat in height up to 20 meters.
Japanese cherries – sakura –
can be seen not only in Japan, but also in the small German city of Bonn.
In the spring, during cherry blossoms, the street is transformed. In 1984 in the city
Bonn began to fight for clean air, and on two streets in the historic
cherry trees were planted in the center of the city.
Whitehaven is 7 kilometers
white sand. The beach is one of the cleanest in the world. Order
supported by two measures: no smoking and no dogs allowed.
In addition, the sand has one feature: it does not heat up, so it does not
burns feet even on the hottest day.
San Francisco. The Golden Gate is one of the most recognizable bridges in the world, and
You must have seen it in the movies more than once. Over a day passes over the bridge
100 thousand cars. Tourists try to see the Golden Gate during
fog that usually appears at night and disappears by noon.
This place is worth visiting
in summer, when magnificent thunderstorms can be observed in the park, or on winter nights.
The park has five gorges, each with its own unique rock formations.
formations. Diverse fauna also deserves attention: bats,
snakes, birds, geckos and red kangaroos.
Sea cliffs in Etretat —
a real find for a photographer. On the coast you can see picturesque
rocks forming natural arches. Lovers will love this place
traditional old Europe. Etretat is a quiet provincial town, and
the locals are famous for their hospitality. This is the right place to
take a break from the hustle and bustle against the backdrop of amazing landscapes and
the town of Pamukkale, which means «cotton castle» in Turkish.
There are 17 geothermal springs and reservoirs-terraces formed by
from travertine. The famous snow-white cascades of the resort are not just
popular attraction: the waters of Pamukkale also have healing
Visiting Windermere is the best
only in autumn, in September or October. This place will not only please
lovers of beautiful nature, but also those who are fond of rowing. Also
there are many museums nearby that will appeal to children and adults, for example
Cumberland Pencil Museum. Near the lake there are excellent
restaurants with delicious food.
The main Hindu temple in
Cambodia, dedicated to the god Vishnu. This is the largest religious building
ever built by man. Angkor is not just one temple, but a whole complex
buildings that cover 200 kilometers (although archaeologists say that
Angkor used to take about 5 thousand kilometers — this is even difficult
introduce). The architecture of the XII century, sculptures and bas-reliefs will surprise even those
who are not particularly interested in history. And it’s better to come here for a few days,
because it is unrealistic to quickly examine everything in one day.
Mackericher National Park in California. Even though the beach itself
in the light of day it looks magical, the story of its appearance is not the most rosy. On the
The coast has been dumped with garbage from nearby towns for years. broken bottles,
washed by ocean waves, became more and more smooth, until
turned into beautiful multi-colored pebbles, with which the whole
beach. By the way, keep in mind that taking stones with you is strictly prohibited, and
if you find a piece of glass there, you can safely take it with you
for a collection of souvenirs.
Bled is the name of the charming
Alpine town in Slovenia, located in the north-west of the country.
Not far from it is the lake of the same name, which attracts thousands
vacationers. This is a place for good fishing, mountain climbing,
peaceful outdoor recreation, boat trips and activities
Kliluk, or Spotted Lake,
— a body of water in British Columbia, near the city of Osoyoos. The lake water is saturated
minerals (magnesium sulfate, calcium, sodium, silver and titanium).
Therefore, in the summer, bizarre spots form on its surface,
which, depending on the weather, are painted in different colors. Is it worth it
say that the water in the lake has a strong healing effect.
Northern Lights —
amazing natural phenomenon: so that you can see it on Earth, on
The sun must burst. Iceland is a great place to see
northern lights, but far from the only one. In some regions of Russia you
you can also admire this phenomenon.
beautiful. Only here you can see colorful mountain formations,
consisting of red sandstones and conglomerates of the Cretaceous period. This place
near the city of Zhangye is becoming more and more popular, so now there is
necessary infrastructure so that everyone can explore
amazing colored rocks.
Darvaza is a gas crater in
Turkmenistan, which, for a very frightening appearance, the locals and
travelers call it the door to hell and the gate to hell. In the 70s, geologists
found a gas accumulation near the village of Darvaza, started drilling
well, but by chance the earth collapsed, and a huge hole was formed,
filled with gas. So that people living nearby are not poisoned by harmful fumes,
It was decided to set fire to the gas. Everyone thought that the fire would go out in a couple of days. But
from 19For 71 years, the fire continues to blaze continuously day and night.
The purest and most
deep lake of the planet. The volume of water in Baikal is about 23,000 km³, which
accounts for 20% of the world and 90% of Russian fresh water reserves. And of course,
it is one of the most beautiful places imaginable. That’s why
Baikal is so loved and the inhabitants of our country are so proud of it. Start your own
the study of the 100 most beautiful places on the planet is from Baikal.
Aogashima island of the same name
formed as a result of volcanic activity. The volcano has not erupted since
1700, but is still considered active. Approximately 200 people live directly
next to the crater. To see all the beauties of this place, you need to go
to the very peak — more than 430 meters above sea level. You can get to the island
only by helicopter or boat.
Bright sapphire light in
cave appeared due to the fact that over the centuries the ice was compressed,
expelling air bubbles. Since there is no oxygen left, the ice absorbs
sunlight and shimmering shades of blue. For security
travelers can visit Skaftafell only when the temperature is low
Chittorgarh city, capital
former Kingdom of Mewar, located on the banks of the Gambiri River in the district
Rajasthan. Chittorgarh Fort, from which the city takes its name,
is a symbol of Rajput pride and valor. It consists of 22
reservoirs, palaces, towers and temples. In addition, Chittorgarh is located at 700
acre of land and stands on a 180-meter high hill — the view opens
Big blue hole in
Belize is a round karst funnel with a diameter of 305 meters, extending to
depth of 120 meters. You can look at this miracle of nature either from a helicopter
(the panorama is amazing), or from inside (this is a popular place among
divers). Jacques-Yves Cousteau included the Great Blue Hole in his list of the top 10
dive sites in the world.
Venice is one
big attraction. As a rule, travelers are advised
visit the Rialto Bridge, see St. Mark’s Basilica, wander through the narrow
streets, ride a gondola. And, of course, visit the famous
carnival. The well-known fact that Venice is gradually sinking into the water, and,
perhaps soon only memories will remain of this splendor. That’s why
don’t waste a minute.
Great Barrier Reef
can be viewed from the air or go diving in close proximity
proximity. Sea lovers will be delighted. If you don’t like to dive
it’s okay — you can go to sea on a boat with a transparent bottom, so
You will be able to see with your own eyes a diverse fauna under water. Big
The barrier reef is the world’s largest coral reef. It includes 900 islands in
Coral Sea and about 3 thousand individual reefs.
Cathedral Cove is considered
one of the most interesting sights of the Coromandel Peninsula,
famous tourist destination on New Zealand’s North Island.
Clear water, white sand, beautiful rocks — an ideal place for
Shifen Waterfall locals
called little Niagara because of the similar cascading shape. Shifen is located
between two rocks, so the roar of falling water can be heard for a lot
kilometers. All slopes are covered with dense vegetation. Magnificent scenery,
rainbow over the stream, unusual animals — that’s what attracts in this place
Late March to early
May the whole of Holland is transformed. You won’t see such a sea of flowers again.
nowhere in the world. Huge areas are planted with tulips of all shades: pink,
blue, red, yellow, green, purple… Worth seeing them, and also
windmills, cities with unique architecture, canals and much more
yet. The Netherlands will not leave anyone indifferent.
cliffs and soft lighting Antelope Canyon is a favorite place for photographers.
It got its name because of the unusual color of the striped rocks, they are somehow
reminiscent of the color of an antelope. You can visit the canyon only with a guide and not
during the rainy season: at this time the danger of flooding is great.
As they say, see Paris
and die. If you find yourself in this city, you will not be able to pass by
The Eiffel Tower is a symbol not only of Paris, but of the whole of France. She is visible from
many points of the city, since the height of the structure is 325 meters. At night
The Eiffel Tower begins to shimmer with hundreds of colored lights. You can
even to climb it, however, you have to pay a few euros for it. AND,
of course, be sure to take a picture against the background of this most recognizable
sights of France.
In the central part
Croatia, in the Litsko-Sensky county, is located the oldest in the Eastern
Europe, Plitvice Lakes National Park. It includes 16 large
karst lakes, 140 waterfalls, 20 caves and a unique beech forest. On the
The protected area is inhabited by bears, wolves, rare birds and other
animals. An active and inquisitive traveler will have to visit this place.
Tianzi Mountain is one
one of the four most famous scenic areas of the Wulingyuan Nature Reserve. Vertex
Tianzi is located in the middle of the «golden triangle» at an altitude of 1,260 meters.
This is a place of beautiful waterfalls, mysterious caves, picturesque forests and
rich animal world. For those who are afraid to overcome the path on their own
through the forests, there are cable cars. They can quickly climb to the top
For a trip to Solovki
three or four days is not enough — there are so many sights here,
monuments of ancient architecture that are worth seeing. Recommended
be sure to visit the Solovetsky Monastery, visit Cape Beluzhsky and
watch the white whales, which look like albino dolphins, go to
Solovetsky sketes, to see the mysterious labyrinths on the Cape of Labyrinths.
Getting to Solovki is not easy, but it’s worth it.
The ancient city of Petra,
built before our era, lost in the sands, still amazing
imagination. Its inhabitants at one time learned not only to extract water in
desert, but also skillfully knew how to work with stone. So after many centuries
more than half a million tourists come to Jordan every year to see
majestic buildings with their own eyes, testifying to a glorious past
If you ever
find yourself in Australia, be sure to look at the rocks that have received
titled The Twelve Apostles. True, today out of twelve you can see
only eight: in 2005 several rocks collapsed. All because they are not
stone, but from limestone rock, which does not withstand the effects of erosion.
Great Wall of China —
it is one of the largest and most ancient monuments of architecture. Her
the length is almost 9 thousand kilometers — the dimensions are really
impress. In addition, it is one of the most visited
attractions in the world: annually there are about 40 million
There is a body of water in Australia
formed by three streams that flow from Mount Bartle Frere. Water managed
carve rocks that have now become one of the wonders of the world. Surface
boulders are polished almost to a shine, and they amaze with their size.
This place is also called the devil’s pool, as a strong current can
easily take the person away. But even this danger does not deter
View the pyramid
Cheops can be found on the Giza Plateau, on the outskirts of Cairo. By the way, here you can
see the famous Sphinx. Being close to the pyramids means a little
touch history. Just think how a man could raise such
monumental building! Despite many different theories, no one has
still cannot answer the question exactly how this was even possible.
The Dead Sea is very
unusual body of water. In fact, this is an endorheic lake, and the most salty in
the world. You can swim there just lying on your back like a float.
The Dead Sea is located between Israel, Jordan and Palestine.
The unique content of salts and minerals in the water has turned this
body of water to a medical resort created by nature and attracting millions
tourists from all over the world. Has healing properties
only water, but also mud, which is extracted from the bottom of this lake.
Arizona crater is not the most
large but best preserved trace of the collision of the Earth with
meteorite. In order for such a funnel to form, it was necessary that
the meteorite weighed 300 tons and entered the atmosphere at a speed of 157 times
exceeding the speed of sound. The power of the explosion during the collision was so
huge that it can be compared with the explosion power of 8,000 atomic bombs,
similar to those that were dropped on Hiroshima. On the edge of the crater
museum dedicated to its history.
Loch Ness is famous for its
only with its beautiful views, but also with the legend of
loch ness monster. Therefore, fascinating events are held daily on the lake.
excursions for tourists who want not only to learn about the picturesque place,
but they also hope that they will be able to see the mythical
is actually an oasis in the desert, located just six kilometers from
Dunhuang city in Gansu province. It’s really amazing, especially
if you traveled all day under the scorching sun and in the end
saw this amazing green corner. Unfortunately, over time, the lake
decreases in size, despite all the measures taken by the government and
Bell tower in the city
Pisa became famous all over the world because of the unintentional tilt. This
landmark is still called leaning, although the tower leans
stopped in 2008. The authorities are constantly concerned about strengthening the tower: often
the columns are restored, the foundation is strengthened. Here you can not only do
a photograph as if you are supporting the tower (absolutely everyone has this
tourists coming here), but also to visit inside the tower itself.
Uluru, or Ayers Rock, is one
of the main natural attractions of Australia, to look at which
more than 400 thousand people come annually. The rock changes its color
depending on the time of day and lighting, and ranges from bright orange to
dark lilac. Ancient Aboriginal drawings have been preserved on the rock, and that’s all
the place is covered with old stories and legends. So be sure to visit
Uluru with a guide, you will learn a lot of interesting things.
Former church, today
museum and one of the most outstanding monuments of the Renaissance. Here
be sure to listen to the famous Catholic choir: the singing makes its way to
depths of the soul. This is a place of incredible luxury and beauty. It’s worth coming here
to see with your own eyes the design of the chapel, because they worked on it
many of the greatest artists including Michelangelo, Pinturicchio and Botticelli.
Monument Valley Park
territory of the Navajo Indian Reservation — a unique geological
formation, sandy vase-plateau. There are huge rocky
boulders and dunes, the height of which reaches 300 meters. Indians spend
excursions to the valley for thousands of tourists visiting every day
state landmark. The nature of the valley and the settlements are also interesting.
indigenous people. They live on the territory of Monument Valley permanently — without
electricity, running water and other benefits of civilization.
In the capital of Portugal,
Lisbon, you will be able to see the bridge, looking at which it is hard to believe that it is
created by human hands. This cable-stayed bridge across the Tagus River is the longest in
Europe. When you look at him, a little uncomfortable from his scope, size.
But fear not: the bridge was designed to withstand the wind
at a speed of 250 kilometers per hour and the strongest earthquakes.
Can be found in Mexico
many archaeological finds associated with the Maya civilization, but especially
interesting to see the ruins of ancient temples. Truth to see
at least some of them, you have to travel a lot. Most popular places —
Bekan in the state of Campeche, Bonampak in the state of Chiapas, Chakchoben in the state of Quintana Roo
and especially Chichen Itza in the Yucatan Peninsula.
The Devil is a monolith of volcanic origin in Wyoming.
The age of Devil’s Tower is estimated at
at 195–225 million years. Come here often
climbers come because climbing the Devil’s Tower is a business
difficult and interesting. True, if you want to commit it, don’t plan
trip for June. The locals consider the mountain sacred and object to
This place even in life
looks like a picture from a commercial for a paradise vacation. tourists here
a little, so you can take a break from people, walk along the snow-white
beaches and enjoy swimming in clear water. get to
islands is not easy, but those who have been there assure that it is worth it:
nature here is unique and untouched by man.
In the national park
«Fiordland» you can go on a boat cruise, play paintball,
go kayaking and biking, take a sightseeing flight, go fishing
and attend a variety of family activities. And all this — in the largest
New Zealand park, where, among other things, you can see many animals:
dolphins and seals, deer and hares, parrots and kiwi.
Name of Midway Atoll
translated from English as «the middle of the road», and this is no accident: the islands
located just between North America and Asia. Now the atoll is
reserve, home to almost two million birds: laysan and black-footed
albatrosses, white terns, red-footed phaetons and petrels.
We are back to the river again
Colorado. This time — to look at the Horseshoe — a meander on the territory
Glen Canyon National Recreation Area. The place is very popular among tourists,
because it is really picturesque and here you can make great
pictures for memory. And besides, it is quite easy to get here: next to
Horseshoe Bend passes road number 89.
Fabulous in every way
place words. The castle is truly huge and luxurious. Translated from German
the name means «new swan cliff», and in the decoration of the castle there are swans
occupy not the last place. Also, here you can see
illustrations for Wagner’s operas and old German legends, canvases
Wilhelm Hauschild, mosaic floor by Deton from Vienna, columns from
marble and lapis lazuli. Neuschwanstein became a source of inspiration for
construction of the Sleeping Beauty Castle at Disneyland Paris. inspired
this place is great. It is believed that it was here that Tchaikovsky was born
idea for the ballet «Swan Lake».
If you want
feel what it is like to stand on the edge of the world, go to
Norway, to Mount Skjeggedal. Troll’s tongue — a ledge, a broken piece
rocks frozen in a horizontal position. For the sake of a good shot in fact
edge, many tourists gather courage and climb the mountain. So here
you will get not only photos, but also an interesting climbing experience.
In southern Utah, you
you will find one of the most unusual mountain formations — Coyote Gorge. it
the place is famous for its canyons, natural bridges, arches, small
waterfalls. It is better to go camping here with an overnight stay: unforgettable
impressions are guaranteed.
Mount Fuji is a volcano that
has not erupted since the 18th century. Snow-capped Fujiyama Peak seen from Tokyo
100 kilometers. In July and August, when the snow melts, the mountain is open for
visits, and dozens of people climb 3,800 meters. Fujiyama —
source of inspiration for many artists, musicians, writers of antiquity
and our days. When referring to Fuji, the Japanese add the word «san» — Fuji-san — to
a sign of respect for this highest mountain in Japan.
Erawan Park is 550
kilometers of beauty and tranquility. Most people come here to
look at the famous seven-level waterfall. If you are here, you will
you can go up to the second level. Just keep in mind that the way
quite slippery and you need to take care of practical shoes.
The Amazon rainforest is
the jungle, which spread over a vast plain, covers the entire basin
Amazon rivers and occupy 5. 5 million square kilometers. Jungle on
shores of the Amazon are equal in size to half of all the remaining
tropical forests on our planet. At least 3,000 species live here
fish, 1300 species of birds, about 500 species of mammals, more than 400 species
amphibians, almost 400 species of reptiles and about 100 thousand species
various invertebrates. And there is nothing to say about the diversity of flora — for one
per square kilometer there are 150 thousand species of higher plants, including
including 75 thousand species of trees.
A city of notoriety.
Together with most of the inhabitants, he was buried under the ash from the eruption.
volcano Vesuvius in 79 AD. e. Today it is one of the most popular
sights of Italy. For a fee, you can wander through the desert
streets (you can walk for a long time, so stock up on water). Here you can
admire the ancient architecture, frescoes, mosaics. And see the terrible:
archaeologists filled the voids in the layers of ash with gypsum and obtained casts of people and
animals in the positions in which they died.
a peaceful place can be found near
New York, a city
which is impossible to imagine without the hustle and bustle. But it still exists
and a few kilometers from the metropolis you can enjoy the singing of birds
under the crowns of huge trees next to the stream of water. Watkins Glen Park is
A 120-meter gorge, along the bottom of which Watkins Creek flows. Along the edges
gorges at different levels pass several paths that intersect each
with a friend and go either one or the other side of the cliff — tourists come
here for interesting hiking trails.
enjoy the pure alpine air. The Engadine Valley is divided into two parts.
The Upper Engadine is an area for outdoor activities: skiing, skating,
kayaking, diving, windsurfing. Lower Engadine — quieter,
a place not crowded with tourists, where you can admire the picturesque
landscapes and panoramas.
Mount Roraima is remarkable
the fact that its top is a huge
30-kilometer plateau. Above Roraima
there is a big cloud hanging all the time, and if you get to the top, you can
look at it from top to bottom. The constant cloudiness around the mountain is associated with
the fact that at the foot of Roraima, the Amazon, Orinoco and
What happened in Vegas remains
in Vegas! City of eternal celebration, gambling, lights, luxury and
extravagance. So many attractions, shops and entertainment for one
you will not find a square meter anywhere else in the world. Recommended to visit
here to everyone who feels that he is being sucked into a routine, Las Vegas will give
you a holiday.
Phi Phi Islands are four
tiny islands and two main ones: Phi Phi Don and Phi Phi Ley. But populated
only Phi Phi Don, and it is noteworthy that the entire island is completely pedestrian.
It was here that the famous film «The Beach» with DiCaprio in the title role was filmed. If a
you miss summer, snow-white beaches and lazy but exotic holidays,
Phi Phi is perfect.
One of the most famous
structures in the world. Many residents of our country often saw him in screensavers for
popular Brazilian TV series. The height of the statue is 38 meters (eight of them
occupies a pedestal), the span of Christ’s arms is 28 meters. Weight — 1,145 tons. Yet
a more impressive statue makes a good location — Christ the Redeemer
rises on the hill. The monument is included in the list of seven new wonders of the world.
about one kilometer through which the river Partnakh flows. Gorge walls
reach 68 meters in height. Hundreds of small streams run down them —
it is thanks to them that unusual ice sculptures are formed. AT
Partnachklamme can walk not only along the bottom of the gorge, but also along one of the slopes to see all the beauty from above.
The largest fountain in Rome
built by the architect Nicola Salvi in the Baroque style. It adjoins the facade
Palazzo Poli, which gives the impression that they are one
whole. It is worth seeing this majestic building for two reasons.
Firstly, the fountain is really very beautiful, it is the largest in the world.
baroque fountain. And secondly, there is a belief that if you throw in
him a coin, you will definitely return to Rome.
Disneyland is a joy for
children, but believe me, even adults will be fascinated by the fabulous atmosphere.
Disneyland Paris is made up of five theme parks grouped around
Sleeping Beauty Castle, the symbol of the Disney Studios. In Adventureland you can
wander through the labyrinths, visit a pirate ship or Robinson’s house
on the tree. In the Border Country, you can ride roller coasters and
other attractions. On the Main Road of the USA — have a bite to eat in one of the dozens
cozy cafes and buy souvenirs. In the Land of Discovery, visitors are waiting for
fictional future of Jules Verne, and in the Land of Fantasy it will be interesting to the most
little visitors: here you can see the heroes of your favorite cartoons.
Bonifacio is one of the most
visited cities of Corsica. Mediterranean Sea, rich historical past,
which is reflected in architecture, beaches and a large selection of
entertainment is what attracts tourists so much. Bonifacio impossible
imagine without rocks, so we advise you to go on a boat trip and
sides of the ship to look at the caves and grottoes, as well as the famous staircase
king of Aragon.
The Corinth Canal is the most
narrowest shipping channel in the world. It connects the bay of the same name with the bay
Saronicos, which allowed ships in the 19th century to shorten their journey by 400
kilometers. Today, the channel is not often used for its intended purpose, because it
too narrow, but the place was chosen by tourists. May to September any
wishing to make a jump with insurance from a car or
railway bridge over the canal. Bungee jumping is a popular attraction.
Usually, extreme sports enthusiasts choose a jump to the maximum length — with a touch
City in the sky, city in the middle
clouds, the lost city of the Incas — such epithets are often awarded
Machu Picchu. This is the most famous, but at the same time the most mysterious monument.
culture of the Incas, the existence of which no one suspected until
beginning of the 20th century. The city is built on top of a mountain, at an altitude of 2,450 meters.
The place is included in the list of new wonders of the world and is a protected object.
UNESCO. If you happen to be here, be sure to check out
the gate of the Sun, the observatory, the castle of the Moon, palaces and temples carved into the rock.
Author and layout in Tilda: Lera Merzlyakova
Natalya Skornyakova, Oksana Zapevalova,
Designer: Vadim Maryin
Places you must visit in your life
And let’s dream, what will we do when the world becomes the same and the borders open? You can plan a future vacation and visit a country that you have not yet been to. There are so many interesting things in the world, and we still have time to study this issue thoroughly.
1. Walk under the walls of Dubrovnik, which have been protecting the Croatian city since the 7th century. 2. Take a road trip in Havana, Cuba. 3. Let’s go to Las Vegas! 4. Climb the ruins of Angkor Wat in Cambodia. 5. Visit the Grand Canyon in Arizona, USA. 6. See giant tortoises and sea lions in the Galapagos Islands. 7. Spend the night at an ice hotel located in the Fagaras mountains near Bucharest, Romania. 8. Have fun at the carnival in Salvador, Brazil. 9. Swim in the Dead Sea, Israel. 10. Eat the world’s best pizza in Naples, Italy. 11. Watch the sunset over the Mediterranean in Santorini, one of the most beautiful Greek islands. 12. Admire the amazing Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain. 13. Get involved in the Queen’s Day party in Amsterdam, when people dress in orange and party all night long. 14. Go to the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul, Turkey. 15. Take a hot bath at the Blue Lagoon near Reykjavik, Iceland.
16. Walk the old Spanish colonial streets in Cartagena, Colombia. 17. Eat breakfast in Malaysia: a minced meat sandwich with sardines, egg and finely chopped onions — you will lick your fingers! 18. Stroll through the lush gardens of Villa d’Este in Tivoli, Italy. 19. Sail on a houseboat in Kerala, India. 20. Hang out in underground clubs in Berlin, Germany. 21. Walk along the ancient streets of the French walled city of Carcassonne. 22. See bathing pigs in Exuma, Bahamas. 23. Cycle across the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, California, USA. 24. Swim in a cenote in Yucatan, Mexico. 25. See Art Deco architecture in South Beach, Miami. 26. Explore unreal places in Cappadocia, Turkey. 27. Admire the reflection of the Rocky Mountains in Moraine Lake in Banff National Park, Canada. 28. Approach the so-called «Gates of Hell» — the burning gas field Darvaza in Turkmenistan. 29. Stay in a luxury hut above the turquoise waters around the Maldives. 30. Delight yourself and your friends with a giant steak at the Peter Luger Steakhouse in Brooklyn, New York. 31. Live like a Maharaja at the Mihir Garh Hotel near Jodhpur, India. 32. Visit villages in Tana Toraja, Indonesia. 33. Swim with whale sharks and manta rays off the coast of Mozambique. 34. Fly over the rice terraces of Yunnan, China. 35. Celebrate the Lunar New Year in Singapore. 36. Walk along the Uyuni Salt Flats, a dry salt lake in Bolivia. 37. Admire the view from the observation deck of the Burj Khalifa — the tallest building in the world, Dubai. 38. During a safari in Botswana, you can see a lot of wild animals. 39. Wander through the labyrinthine gardens of the Palace of Versailles near Paris, France. 40. See the colorful ramshackle houses built into the rocks of Valparaiso, Chile. 41. Hike the surreal Coyote Buttes in Arizona. 42. Eat traditional ho in Hanoi, Vietnam. 43. Float in a tranière (a bright, unpowered barge) through the canals of Xochimilco, Mexico City. 44. Explore the streets of Petra, an ancient rock city in Jordan. 45. Visit the floating islands on Lake Titicaca, where the indigenous Uros people still live. 46. Catch the first rays of the sun over Bryce Canyon in southwest Utah, USA. 47. Have a picnic in Antoni Gaudi’s surreal Park Güell, Barcelona, Spain. 48. Relax on one of the magnificent beaches of Goa, India. 49. Catch colored balloons at the Mardi Gras parade in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA. 50. Climb to the top of Huayna Picchu for a bird’s eye view of Machu Picchu. 51. Swim in the pool at the top of the Marina Bay Sands hotel in Singapore. 52. Walk along the unrestored part of the Great Wall of China. 53. Visit all five villages of the Cinque Terre, Italy. 54. Climb to the top of Mauna Kea on the Big Island, Hawaii and watch the stars rise. 55. Test your luck at Port de Monaco, where billionaires come to play. 56. Sail to a secluded beach at Morakt Cave on Koh Muk, Thailand. 57. Have a beer at Lazy Lizard, a bar on Caye Caulker, Belize. 58. Experience the real delight of seeing the Northern Lights in Lapland. 59. Look at the mysterious idols of Easter Island. 60. Take a dog sled ride in the Swedish wilderness. 61. Take pictures of funny lemurs in Madagascar. 62. Go on a sand dune safari outside of Abu Dhabi. 63. Go diving off the Great Barrier Reef, Australia. 64. Walk under the cherry blossoms in Kyoto, Japan. 65. Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in Dublin, Ireland. 66. Play blackjack at one of Macau’s huge casinos. 67. Run with the bulls during the famous San Fermin Fiesta in Pamplona, Italy. 68. Admire the great pyramids of Giza outside of Cairo, Egypt. 69. See from below the world’s tallest Angel Falls in Venezuela. 70. Cruise around the coast of Antarctica and admire the icebergs. 71. Visit the mining town of Kolmanskop in Namibia before the sands bury it. 72. Step into the wonder of Huangshan Mountain, China. 73. Visit Krak des Chevaliers, a medieval castle in Syria. 74. Breathe in the fragrance of lavender in Provence, France. 75. Try your luck and try fugu at a Tokyo restaurant, Japan. 76. Stroll through the gardens of the Royal Palace in Madrid, Spain. 77. Spend the night at the luxurious Caribbean Retreat on Necker Island. 78. Fly a helicopter over New York. 79. Spend New Year’s Eve watching fireworks over Sydney Harbour. 80. Ride the cable car between Whistler and Blackbomb Mountain, Canada. 81. Take a photo near the statue of Christ the Redeemer on Mount Corcovado in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. 82. Ski or snowboard down the slopes of Niseko in northern Japan, known for its beautiful snow. 83. Sleep in a traditional Moroccan riad in Marrakech. 84. Drink champagne in the Champagne region of France. 85. Go bungee jumping in Queenstown, New Zealand, the adventure capital of the world. 86. Try hugging a giant mammoth tree in Northern California. 87. Have tea at the luxurious Liao Liao Hotel in Bariloche, Argentina. 88. Enjoy the incredibly intricate architecture of St. Petersburg. 89. Breathe in the fresh air on Mount Everest in the Himalayas. 90. Dance to klezmer music in Krakow, Poland. 91. Take a boat tour of Chicago to see the architectural sights. 92. Admire the magnificent shades of thermal pools in Yellowstone National Park, USA. 93. Head to the Nevada desert in August and take part in the annual Burning Man Festival. 94. Fly in a hot air balloon over Bagan, Myanmar. 95. Play golf in St. Andrews, Scotland. 96. Go shopping in the Gangam area of Seoul. 97. Take a tour of Franchise, a region of South Africa that makes excellent wines. 98. Try the grilled meat and then dance the night away at Andres Carne de Res, the most famous nightclub in Bogota, Colombia. 99. Drink coffee at a famous Viennese coffee house. 100. Fly into space (if you can afford it).
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Kazan | National Geographic TV channel recognized Kazan Family Center as one of the most beautiful places in the country
National Geographic TV channel, in honor of its 20th anniversary in Russia, installed an installation in the form of its logo near the Family Center «Kazan» («Bowls»). It is reported by the mayor’s office of Kazan.
Thus, Chasha was recognized by the TV channel as one of the 20 most beautiful places in the country. The same installations were installed, in particular, in the Mamison Gorge in North Ossetia, on Mount Bermamyt and Mussa-Achitara in Karachay-Cherkessia, in the Ruskeala marble canyon and in the Kizhi Museum-Reserve in Karelia, in Teriberka on the Kola Peninsula and other places. .
More news about the event:
The Kazan family center was included in the top 20 interesting places in Russia according to National Geographic
The Kazan family center Kazan was included in the top twenty interesting places in Russia in the top of the National Geographic TV channel.
16:12 09.12.2021 IA Tatar-inform — Kazan
Kazan named one of the 20 most interesting places in Russia
As a sign of this, an unusual installation in the form of a yellow frame is installed near the Chalice.
15:30 09.12.2021 Administration of Kazan — Kazan
If you see a yellow frame near the Chalice, don’t be alarmed
National Geographic installed signature yellow frames in 20 of the most beautiful places in the country.
10:21 09.12.2021 E-kazan.Ru — Kazan
National Geographic TV channel recognized the Kazan Family Center as one of the most beautiful places in the country
National Geographic TV channel, in honor of its 20th anniversary in Russia, installed an installation in the form of its logo near the Kazan Family Center (Bowls).
10:04 09.12.2021 Evening Kazan — Kazan
Kazan entered the top 20 most beautiful places according to National Geographic
A National Geographic installation was installed near the Kazan family center in the capital of Tatarstan, with which the editors of the TV channel marked 20 most beautiful places in the country.
16:26 08.12.2021 Business Online — Kazan
News from neighboring regions on the topic:
An installation from National Geographic will appear in Teriberka
Photo: nat-geo. ru
National Geographic Russia celebrates twenty years of broadcasting in Russia.
00:05 12/11/2021 Murmansk messenger — Murmansk
National Geographic TV channel included Divnogorye in Voronezh in the rating of the most beautiful places in Russia
In honor of the 20th anniversary of National Geographic Russia, the channel will install 20 installations in the most beautiful places in the country.
21:20 10.12.2021 Obozrevatel.Vrn — Voronezh
The symbol of the 20th anniversary of National Geographic Russia will be installed in Divnogorie, Voronezh
Yellow frames will appear in the most picturesque places in the country
National Geographic TV channel celebrates 20 years of broadcasting in Russia.
20:52 10.12.2021 RIA Voronezh — Liski — Liski
A unique place in Voronezh entered the «golden 20» National Geographic
A huge installation will be installed in Divnogorie.
National Geographic included Divnogorye in Voronezh in the top 20 most beautiful places in Russia.
19:01 10.12.2021 GTRK Voronezh — Voronezh
An installation by National Geographic appeared in the Mon Repos Park Museum-Reserve
National Geographic Russia is celebrating twenty years of broadcasting in our country and on this occasion has compiled its list of the most picturesque places.
16:56 12/10/2021 Peterburg-News.Ru — St. Petersburg
The Ostankino Tower was included in the top 20 iconic places in Russia according to National Geografic
Photo: Andrey Lyubimov / AGN Moscow Russia, Moscow, Akademika Koroleva street, 15k1 Map of all events
The Ostankino TV Tower was included in the top 20 iconic places in Russia according to the National Geographic TV channel.
14:17 10.12.2021 Evening Moscow — Moscow
Natural attractions of Karachay-Cherkessia entered the top 20 most beautiful places in Russia
National Geographic TV channel, in honor of its 20th anniversary in Russia, installed installations in 20 most beautiful places in Russia to inspire people to travel and teach them to appreciate the surrounding beauty.
13:26 10.12.2021 Ministry of Tourism — Cherkessk
Natural attractions of Karachay-Cherkessia entered the top 20 most beautiful places in Russia
9 DEC. CHERKESSK. National Geographic TV channel, in honor of its 20th anniversary in the Russian Federation, installed installations in 20 most beautiful places in Russia to inspire people to travel and teach them to appreciate the beauty around them.
11:40 10.12.2021 RIA Karachay-Cherkessia — Cherkessk
National Geographic TV channel installed installations in Kamchatka in honor of its 20th anniversary in Russia
Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky and its panorama is clearly visible from the city. Snowave is the first Russian surf school located on the Pacific Ocean.
16:52 12/10/2021 Newspaper Express-Kamchatka — Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky
National Geographic installed three installations in Kamchatka in honor of the anniversary
This year the National Geographic TV channel is celebrating 20 years of broadcasting in Russia.
14:50 10.12.2021 IA Kam 24 — Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky
National Geographic, in honor of its 20th anniversary, installed three installations in Kamchatka.
Art objects in the form of yellow frames appeared on the Vilyuchinsky Pass, near Koryaksky Volcano and on the Pacific Ocean, Koryaksky Volcano.
14:37 12/10/2021 KamchatkaMedia.Ru — Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky
National Geographic installed three installations in Kamchatka for the anniversary
National Geographic TV channel, which celebrates 20 years of broadcasting in Russia this year, installed three installations in the form of yellow frames in Kamchatka.
14:00 10.12.2021 IA 41 — Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky
National Geographic TV channel installed 9 installations in Kamchatka0103
National Geographic TV channel, in honor of its 20th anniversary in Russia, installed three installations in Kamchatka: on the Vilyuchinsky waterfall, in the suburbs of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky with a view of the Koryak volcano, and also on the Pacific coast,
10:20 10. 12.2021 Kamchatka-Inform — Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky
Four tourist sites of the Volgograd region are recognized as treasures of Russia
Photo: RIAC National Geographic Traveler magazine has summed up the results of a large-scale online competition «Treasures of Russia», dedicated to the tourism opportunities of our country.
23:10 09.12.2021 Riac34.Ru — Volgograd
Teriberka was included in the National Geographic list of the most beautiful places in Russia
In honor of the 20th anniversary of broadcasting in Russia, the National Geographic TV channel launched a large-scale project designed to draw attention to the natural and man-made wonders of the country.
00:10 12/10/2021 SeverPost.ru — Murmansk
Natural attractions of Karachay-Cherkessia entered the top 20 most beautiful places in Russia
National Geographic TV channel, in honor of its 20th anniversary in Russia, installed installations in 20 of the most beautiful places in Russia to inspire people to travel and teach them to appreciate the beauty of the surroundings.
19:22 09.12.2021 NIA Karachay-Cherkessia — Cherkessk
Natural attractions of Karachay-Cherkessia entered the top 20 most beautiful places in Russia
National Geographic TV channel, in honor of its 20th anniversary in Russia, installed installations in 20 most beautiful places in Russia to inspire people to travel and teach them to appreciate the surrounding beauty.
17:47 09.12.2021 Government of the Karachay-Cherkess Republic — Cherkessk
Two sights from Karelia are among the unique places in Russia (PHOTO)
photo: © National Geographic
In honor of the 20th anniversary in Russia, the National Geographic TV channel installed branded frames in amazing and most beautiful places in the country, including Kizhi and Ruskeala.
17:05 09.12.2021 StolicaOnego.Ru — Petrozavodsk
National Geographic Traveler appreciated the treasures of the Volga land
National Geographic Traveler magazine has summed up the results of the Treasures of Russia large-scale online competition dedicated to the tourism opportunities of our country.
15:42 09.12.2021 Volzhskaya Pravda — Volzhsky
The Mamison Gorge was included in the top 20 most beautiful places in Russia
The popular National Geographic TV channel, on its 20th anniversary, installed an installation in 20 places in the country to “inspire travel”.
12:57 09.12.2021 Sk-News.Ru — Nalchik
In Bugulma, a schoolgirl drank moonshine and fell into a coma.
Tatarstan 24 reports that the girl drank alcohol with her friend.
Many residents of the country are interested in the question of what to do with a pet if the owner received a summons from the military registration and enlistment office, and there is no one to give the animal to.
The second person involved in the case, previously sentenced to a real term, was also acquitted.
In Samara, the sixth court of cassation acquitted Naberezhnye Chelny businessman Damir Bibishev and his accomplice.
President of Tatarstan Rustam Minnikhanov has extended for three years the powers of Airat Gataullin as Plenipotentiary Representative of the Republic of Tatarstan in Turkey.
Ministry of Labor
Ministry of Sports
A 34-year-old resident of the city of Naberezhnye Chelny applied to the Gagarinsky Police Department.
Ministry of Internal Affairs for Kazan
Ministry of Education
139 agricultural workers in Tatarstan went to recruiting stations. Today, at a press conference, the Minister of Agriculture and Food of the Republic of Tatarstan Marat Zyabbarov said,
On October 2, detectives of the criminal investigation department of the Safiullina police department, together with colleagues from the crime detection department,
Kazan Ministry of Internal Affairs
In Naberezhnye Chelny, a 21-year-old worker fell off the 18th floor of a residential building under construction and died.
In Chelny, a criminal case was opened against a man who leaked intimate photos of his girlfriend to the network
Investigators believe that in January, a drunk 41-year-old man took away a mobile phone from his 33-year-old girlfriend.
In Tatarstan, from January to August 2022, 261 cases of bribery were registered, the republic became the leader in this indicator in the country.
These people have stood guard over the health of the population for many years.
These people have been guarding the health of the population for many years, and today they are on a well-deserved rest.
Elderly people are at particular risk for coronavirus infection.
Open days for patients with urticaria and other allergic conditions will be held by the team of the Allergology and Immunology Center of the RCH.
Republican Clinical Hospital
At the festival «Beznen Zaman — Our Time», the creative team of the complex center of social services for the population «Tenderness» of the MTZiSZ RT in the Aksubaevsky district took second place.
The unique project «Places of Power in Russia» is taking place in the Republic of Tatarstan as part of the federal project «Patriotic Education of Citizens of the Russian Federation» of the national project «Education».
Ministry of Education
In the Yutazinsky district, great attention is paid to the elderly and veterans after their retirement
They are not forgotten, they are invited to celebrations and anniversaries of the institution,
Interesting and beautiful places on the planet — Interesting places and popular routes
Perhaps working for National Geographic is a real challenge. Because it is incredibly difficult to determine the most beautiful places in the world. However, experts still did it — they identified those natural attractions that are now considered the wildest and most beautiful in the world.
Some say that Molokai is what Hawaii looked like fifty years ago, others argue that this is what the world should look like in the future. The 10-mile island has over a hundred kilometers of coastline, hidden waterfalls, ancient ruins, and Hawaii’s native heritage.
Jujuy in the northwest of Argentina is a land of remote, arid and infinitely beautiful. The ever-changing palette of lights, shadows and colors makes Jujuy a photographer’s paradise. Salinas Grandes salt marshes are mined here using rectangular basins.
In the lower part of the mountain, under grass roofs, cobbled houses form mystical and fabulous villages, nicknamed the evil kingdom of Denmark — the Faroe Islands. Streymoy is just one of 18 islands of picturesque settlements. The coast of Scotland is 200 miles away.
The unique light of snow, like dust from the most perfect diamonds, the powerful Engadine Valley has been attracting tourists to this part of Switzerland for more than three centuries. Dazzling atmospheric landscapes, countless multi-faceted ice crystals stored in the atmosphere and sparkling in the sun, winter in St. Moritz looks like a brilliant Christmas fairy tale.
The dark Dinaric Alps, clear waters and impregnable cliffs give the impression of a «land of falling lakes» — all this in the famous Plitvice Lakes National Park. The wooden paths attract over a million visitors annually who come to view the waterfalls, streams, caves and lake complex.
- Nile Valley, Egypt
- Samburu District, Kenya
- Skeleton Coast, Namibia
- David Gareji monastery complex, Georgia
- Gangtey Valley, Bhutan
- Chocolate Hills, Philippines
- Waitomo Caves, New Zealand
- Weddell Sea, Antarctica
The Nile Valley stretches across North Africa, but it is 130 km from the rivers Aswan and Luxor, where the Temple of Karnak, built from about 2000 BC, is located, the Nile appears in all its unsurpassed beauty.
North of Mount Kenya, the Samburu region extends from the wooded highlands to the «rusty» deserts of Trukana for more than 150 miles across the country. The authentic tribes still live here, decorating their hair and face with ocher clay to match their earthly surroundings.
One of the sharpest, most unspoiled coastlines, the Skeleton Coast stretches over 300 miles along the northern coast of Namibia. Once a deadly void, now a cradle of wildlife wealth, home to a variety of sea creatures, desert animals and savanna dwellers. Here, African penguins forage in the crystal clear waters of Mercury Island.
High in the mountains of Eastern Georgia stands the austere and remote «David Gareji» — a complex of 19 medieval cave monasteries. They are considered masterpieces of Georgian art. There were once almost 5,000 cells in the caves. One of the caves functions as a monastery, here you can still hear the bewitching singing of the monks in the terrible silence of the desert steppe.
Fabulous Bhutan is home to the breathtaking Gangtei Valley, perched on the sun-drenched western slope of a black mountain. At the top, above treeless valleys, the Gangtei Monastery has been operating since the 17th century, as if imprisoned among the boundless beauty of nature. The Tsechu religious festival is held here annually, where mysterious monks perform magical dances in the masks of various deities.
The Chocolate Hills of Bohol Island in the Philippines are a mystery of nature. The terrain consists of 1,776 grass-covered coral limestones of nearly uniform shape. And although they are covered with abundant green colors all year round, in the driest months they “turn” into droplets of chocolate.
Mesmerizing blue «stars» light up in a cave known as «Glowworm Grotto» along the Waitomo River in New Zealand’s North Island. This tourist attraction has been surprising all travelers since the day the caves were discovered (1880s). The «otherworldly» glow comes from the larvae of fungal mosquitoes, which live only in parts of New Zealand and Australia.
You need to be a real adventurer to visit this «bottom of the world» — the Weddell Sea. Most tourists arrive by ship from South America, deliberately crossing the rugged Drake Passage. Take to the sea all alone, feel the power of overcoming huge glaciers, and take your breath away from the untouched wilderness, you can travel to one of the most places on Earth — the island of South Georgia.
Watch the video about Waitomo Magical Caves:
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The most beautiful places in the world: Top 45 (MANY PHOTOS)
Our vast planet is full of places of unspeakable beauty, sometimes a lifetime is not enough to get to know them. In order to cover all the amazing earthly beauty, this collection has been compiled, which shows the most beautiful places in the world, located in different parts of our world. Here there was a place for natural attractions, and man-made objects, and famous resorts, and extreme attractions. Stormy waterfalls, majestic forests, purest reservoirs, dizzying views of mountains, original ancient settlements, ancient castles, mysterious valleys — all this and much more is worth seeing with your own eyes at least once in your life.
1. Yosemite Valley, USA
Top of the most beautiful places opens a truly heavenly place on earth — the most picturesque valley of glacial origin in the state of California. The highlands of the valley are adorned with an abundance of crystal waterfalls, pristine lakes and lush vegetation. For tourists in the vast territory of the valley there are a lot of hotels, campsites and other benefits of civilization.
2. Colored rocks of Zhangye Danxia, China
The Geological Park in the Chinese province of Gansu is known for an unusual natural treasure — colorful rock formations of multi-colored sandstone rocks and conglomerates, predominantly from the Cretaceous period. About a hundred million years ago, there was a natural pool on the site of the mountains, which later dried up, and its sediment oxidized, taking on an unusually beautiful motley color.
3. Bamboo forest, Japan
In the heart of Kyoto’s urban landscapes is a picturesque corner of nature — a dense bamboo grove, consisting of countless bamboo trees. On the impressive square there is where to roam, so the forest has become a favorite vacation spot for citizens and visitors. At night, the park is illuminated by hundreds of small lanterns and fascinates with its fabulous view.
4. Meteora monastery complex, Greece
Unique monasteries literally grow out of the rock, crowning the tops of the rocks. The rocks themselves are part of the ancient mountain system of Thessaly, located in the historical region of Greece. About 60 million years ago, the sea was located on the site of the rocks, and today Meteora is one of the most valuable and sacred historical places, from the point of view of the Christian religion.
5. Salar de Yuni, Bolivia
In the south of the high desert, on the plateau of Altipano, once there was a salt lake. Later it dried up, exposing the salty bottom. The thickness of the salt layer is from 2 to 8 meters, and in the rainy season, when the surface of this layer is covered with a layer of water, the Yuni salt marsh becomes like a giant mirror: the surface of the lake merges with the blue of the sky, and the surrounding landscapes acquire a truly unearthly beauty.
6. Tianji Mountains, China
Wondering what is the most beautiful place on earth, many travelers choose one of China’s natural parks — Zhangjiajie. On its territory there are «soaring» mountains. It was these landscapes that became the prototype of the landscapes in the world-famous Avatar painting. The mountain peaks shrouded in mist against the backdrop of a green abyss make a truly amazing impression.
7. Ancient City of Petra, Jordan
One of the seven new wonders of the world is located in Jordan — this is the ancient city of Petra, whose history goes back almost three millennia. The city, whose name comes from the word «rock», is really completely carved out of the rock. Numerous temples, colonnades, tombs, baths and much more are skillfully carved into the rock — in total there are more than eight hundred historical monuments.
8. Tunnel of Love, Ukraine
A beautiful green area in the Ukrainian village of Klevan has recently become a popular place for romantic walks and photo shoots. The green tunnel, “entwined” with rich vegetation on all sides, was created not by some master designer, but by nature itself and by an ordinary train that passes along the rails laid here three times a day and transports timber, making its way through the thickness of greenery.
9. Bagan, Myanmar
The Valley of a Thousand Pagodas is one of Myanmar’s famous historical sites. On an area of only about 4 sq. kilometers are located thousands of Buddhist, and not only temples. This is an invaluable archaeological area with thousands of centuries-old historical structures, many of which are richly decorated with gold and other precious materials.
10. Kawachi Fuji Garden, Japan
Not far from Tokyo, there is an extraordinary fairy-tale garden, immersed in millions of colors of all shades of the rainbow. These are flowers common in Japan — wisteria, which hang like vines-garlands from specially constructed frames. Stunning waterfalls of flowers flow from above, forming a multi-colored fragrant tunnel. In addition to wisteria, in the garden you can find a lot of other, bright, but more familiar flowers.
11. Li River, China
China’s cleanest waterway, the Li River, is also famous for its beauty. Cruises are regularly organized along the waters of the river, and sailing along the calm surface of the yellow-green waters, you can contemplate stunning landscapes — the silk ribbon of the river deftly winds among the hills overgrown with greenery and spacious rice fields, creating an amazing, mysterious and mysterious landscape.
12. Santorini Island, Greece
A romantic island in the Aegean Sea is a real archaeological find, full of legends. Everyone who arrives on the island will find something to their liking: those who are interested in archeology can visit numerous excavations, history lovers can look into museums and ancient temples, and fans of outdoor activities will find great places for diving in coastal waters.
13. Inca City Machu Picchu, Peru
The most beautiful places on earth are complemented by the ancient city of the Incas, lost in the high mountains of Peru and shrouded in clouds. The entire city consists of several hundred structures arranged in a clearly structured order. The impregnability of the city, located among high cliffs, fascinates even more, its mystery attracts millions of tourists every year.
14. Algarve Sea Cave, Portugal
One of the most expressive natural creations is located near the popular Portuguese beach of Praia de Benagil. The amazingly shaped cave was formed as a result of natural processes — the impact of water and wind on the stony rock. Cruises on boats, boats or rowing mini-boats — kayaks are regularly organized along the azure sea waters to the cave.
15. Grand Canyon, USA
The deepest Grand Canyon continues the most beautiful places in the world, the views of which are amazing at first sight. Along its reddish rocky walls, as it deepens downwards, there is a gradual change in climatic zones, and significant changes in temperature and humidity are created. At the very bottom of the gorge flows the Colorado River, which for millions of years has made its way through the rocky rock.
16. Monument Valley, USA
Monument Valley has become one of the national symbols of the United States. When moving through the monotonous landscapes of a lifeless desert, the fantastic outlines of rocky formations that have arisen on the horizon evoke vivid impressions. It seems as if you are transported to an ancient country, and the red-yellow rocks suddenly turn into ancient castles, temples and stone sculptures.
17. Mu Cang Chai Rice Terraces, Vietnam
Residents of the northern province of Vietnam have actually accomplished the impossible by setting up rice terraces right on the steep slopes of numerous hills. The «rapids» created by the inhabitants, on which rice is planted, create a horizontal plane, while at the same time trapping the water coming down from the peaks down the slopes. The formed curves of the terraces do not disturb the harmony of natural landscapes and even serve as their original decoration.
18. Pamukkale (“cotton castle”), Turkey
Castles are built not only by architects — sometimes nature itself does a better job with this work. A striking example is the cotton castle of Pamukkale. The combination of snow-white salt formations and the azure of the purest thermal waters that fill the salt baths creates amazing views. In addition to admiring the beauty of these places, here you can significantly improve your health by plunging into one of the warm thermal pools.
19. Great Barrier Reef, Australia
The largest and most beautiful coral reef is located in the Pacific waters on the Australian coast. The structure of the reef is made up of billions of tiny microorganisms that have created the world’s largest coral ecosystem. Against the backdrop of photos of the most beautiful places in the world, a photo of a coral reef stands out for its brightness, originality and an amazing riot of colors.
20. Cinque Terre, Italy
In the Italian region of Liguria there is one place with amazing views of the sea and mountain landscapes. This is the Cinque Terre Park — a green area that stretches along the rocky coast and includes five coastal settlements that appeared on this territory back in the era of the Roman Empire. Among the architectural monuments of the region are medieval palaces, sanctuaries and old mansions.
21. Venice, Italy
Not only beautiful, but also one of the most romantic places on earth is located in Italy, on the Adriatic coast. The world-famous Venice is a corner of majestic ancient architecture, an atmosphere of freedom and eternal celebration. And the incessant splash of water flowing through the channels penetrating the entire city makes this place recognizable among thousands of other places on the planet.
22. Plitvice Lakes — National Park of Croatia
Another of the natural paradises of the planet is located in Croatia. Plitvice Lakes is a magical natural creation, which the Croats themselves call the eighth wonder of the world. The lakes, located at different levels in height, flow into one another and create unique water cascades, stunning in their views. In total, there are 16 such lakes in the area of the national park.
23. Neuschwanstein Castle, Germany
In the Bavarian Alps, on a hill, right above a deep mysterious gorge, rises an unusually light structure, as if floating in the air. It resembles a fairy-tale castle, as if descended from the pages of a romantic fairy tale about princesses, knights and brave deeds. The extraordinarily beautiful Neuschwanstein Castle is surrounded by equally beautiful surrounding landscapes — impregnable mountain peaks and crystal lakes.
24. Navagio Bay, Greece
The small Greek island of Zakynthos is located in the clear waters of the Ionian Sea. Green pines, emerald waters, blue skies, golden sands — all this attracts streams of tourists and vacationers here. It is here that one of the most beautiful bays in the world is located, which is famous not only for its beauty, but also for the wrecked smuggler ship, which was thrown ashore by a severe storm back in 1982.
25. Bora Bora, French Polynesia
The most beautiful places of nature are organically complemented by the pearl of paradise in the Pacific Ocean — the island of Bora Bora. This island has long been chosen by newlyweds and couples in love — a small, remote from civilization microcosm of the purest emerald lagoons, bizarre flowers and bright tropical birds creates an ideal atmosphere of romance and comfort. In addition, here is the perfect service for a relaxing holiday.
26. Victoria Falls on the Zambezi River, border between Zambia and Zimbabwe
On the border of Zimbabwe and Zambia in Africa, you can see one incredible natural phenomenon — the waters of the Zambezi River in a colossal wide stream, with a roar fall into the gorge, and then rush into a narrow crevice, creating clouds of tiny water splashes. Victoria Falls is not the highest, but undoubtedly, in terms of beauty and grandeur, it has no equal in the world.
27. Provence, France
One of the coziest and most beautiful French provinces is located on the Mediterranean coast, right at the foot of the Alps. This fabulous place generously endows with its warmth, beckons with an abundance of vineyards, olive groves, fields of sunflowers, heather, and of course, delicate lilac lavender, which has become a kind of hallmark of this region.
28. Glacial Moraine Lake, Canada
In the Banff Nature Park, in the so-called Valley of the 10 Mountain Peaks, there is a mysterious and mesmerizing body of water — the Moraine glacial lake, the waters of which do not freeze even in severe frosts. Landscapes of unrealistic beauty — majestic fir trees, relief slopes of mountains — frame the lake, reflected in the smoothness of its crystal azure waters.
29. Tulip fields in the Netherlands
The Netherlands is world famous for its flowers, and tulips have become their wonderful symbol. Hundreds of thousands of travelers annually take a walk to the multi-colored flowering fields to admire this riot of colors and flower splendor. From a distance, such fields look as if divided into even motley stripes — all this splendor is created by tulips that bloom in spring.
30. Geirangerfjord, Norway
Norway is known for its fjords — giant mountain corridors filled with sea water. One of Norway’s most famous fjords is the Geirangerfjord, whose serene waters reflect towering cliffs and lush green forests. Small villages, towns and farms are comfortably located along its banks, and in some places streams of waterfalls fall directly from the rocks into the abyss.
31. Great Blue Hole, Belize
A large sinkhole of karst origin is located in the Atlantic Ocean, not far from the coast in Central America. Its depth reaches 120 meters, and the perfectly round shape of its edges is best observed from a height — for example, from a helicopter, from where all the beauty of this natural phenomenon will be revealed. According to one version, the funnel is a collapsed limestone cave.
32. Vatnajökull Glacier Caves, Iceland
In Iceland, the cold realm of snow and ice, you can also find the most beautiful places on the planet, one of these is ice caves. Getting into their bowels, as if you find yourself in a fairy-tale kingdom of cold: ice walls are everywhere, through which light flows, refracting at different angles. The process of cave formation is due to the movement of melt water, which forms bizarre cavities inside the glacier.
33. Pyramids of Giza, Egypt
The Egyptian pyramids are the only remaining ancient wonders of the world: several pyramids in Giza, guarded by the Great Sphinx, are part of an ancient necropolis, which to this day is the object of close attention of archaeologists. Ancient Egyptian pharaohs are buried in the largest pyramids, their wives, as well as priests and officials, are buried in smaller structures.
34. Gasadalur village, Faroe Islands
This village, with its pristine nature, is located on the western side of one of the Faroe Islands in the Kingdom of Denmark. Small, like toy houses of the village are located above the cliff, from which a waterfall falls directly into the ocean. This quiet and cozy place is a true paradise for those who love the combination of beautiful nature, silence and tranquility.
35. Antelope Canyon, USA
A unique creation of nature and an iconic landmark of the state of Arizona in the USA — Antelope Canyon, a mystical place in the form of long crevices in red-yellow sandstone rocks. Amazing views inside the canyon open at rare moments when the sun is at its zenith and its rays fall into the crevice, and then the gorge begins to play with new, unusual colors.
36. Iguazu Falls, Argentina, Brazil
A colossal complex of violent waterfalls formed at the intersection of the Iguazu and Paraná rivers. The cascade is formed by about three hundred small waterfalls. On the opposite side of the crevice, into which the water falls, there is an observation deck, from where you can watch a stunning spectacle: a huge mass of water, forming a myriad of water splashes, sparkling and shimmering in the sun, falls down with a roar.
37. Batu Caves, Malaysia
One of the most revered Indian shrines and a real miracle of nature is the Batu caves. The age of the caves is already about 400 million years — once there were rocks in their place, in which, over time, cavities were washed out as a result of exposure to water. This is how several long caves were formed, walking through which you can see the amazing formations of stalactites or visit the cave temple.
38. McWay Falls, USA
The best places in the world continues one of the most unusual waterfalls in the world, which is located in the US state of California. McWay Falls is considered an ever-living waterfall, as it never dries up, and its waters fall from a cliff right into a picturesque bay. And the very vegetation surrounding the waterfall always remains green — the secret is that the trees in this district are fed by the waters of the underground river.
39. Cappadocia, Turkey
Cappadocia is called the heart of Turkey — this historical region is located in the heart of the country. Once here, you can feel like a guest of another planet — the local landscapes are so unusual: there are snow-capped peaks of extinct volcanoes, and low mountains, and for some time now Cappadocia has become a popular destination for sightseeing flights in large balloons.
40. Mount Roraima — located on the border of three countries: Venezuela, Brazil, Guyana
In South America there are the oldest rock formations — unusual mountains with flat, as if truncated tops. The highest of these mountains is located at the junction of three South American states, and the area of \u200b\u200bits top is impressive in its size — about 34 square meters. km. Approximately one fifth of this area is occupied by reservoirs, which, tumbling down the mountain, give life to the Amazon, Essequibo and Orinoco rivers.
41. James Bond Island, Thailand
One of the «star» sights of Thailand, the island of Tapu, gained fame thanks to the famous film back in the distant 1974 year. Since then, the small island has become the starting point for the active development of the tourist in Phuket. This area conquers with its beauty: against the backdrop of emerald sea waters, a limestone rock, covered with greenery, rises. Boat trips are organized regularly from Phuket to Tapu Island.
42. Trolltunga, Norway
Sometimes the most beautiful places in the world, their photos with names conquer already from the moment of the first correspondence acquaintance with them. A striking example of this is the bewitching natural landmark of Norway — the rock of Troll Tongue. The dream of almost every traveler here is to take a photo from the top of that very rock, namely from its ledge, from where breathtaking views of mountain landscapes and the azure of the still waters of the Hardanger Fjord open up.
43. Angkor Wat Giant Temple Complex, Cambodia
The world’s largest religious building, erected in the 10th-12th centuries in Cambodia, was dedicated to the supreme Hindu deity Vishnu. Angkor Wat is a giant 3-level complex of temples that has been keeping secrets and legends of the capital of the Khmer Empire for about a millennium. The height of the complex, built of sandstone, is 65 meters, and on its colossal area of 2.5 square kilometers there are magnificent towers, terraces, galleries and gardens.
44. Lencois Maranhenses National Park, Brazil
The fantastic landscapes of Brazil’s Lencois Maranhenses Natural Park make a lasting impression. The vast territory of the park with snow-white sand dunes is occupied by small turquoise lakes, creating a magnificent contrast of colors. Despite the desert views, Lencois Maranhenses is not essentially a desert — it rains regularly here, which fills the spaces between the sandy hills with water.
45. Valley of Geysers, Russia
One of the most interesting geyser fields is located in Kamchatka in the Kronotsky Biosphere Reserve. In fact, the valley is a volcanic canyon, on the territory of which several dozen gushing hot springs are concentrated. This whole area resembles a seething cauldron — everything here flows, hisses and boils, steam jets break out and hot thermal water pulsates.
So, where is the most beautiful place? The answer to this question still cannot be unambiguous, however, the rating of the most beautiful places in the world will certainly be a useful tool for the traveler in choosing the most impressive sights of our planet.
TOP 10 most unusual places in the world, as if from another planet
1. Pamukkale, Turkey
Pamukkale — consistently present in numerous ratings of the most beautiful places on Earth and it is absolutely deserved. This is a series of thermal springs that in a bizarre way carved «steps» in a snow-white limestone slope. Today, not only travelers who want to look at the miracle of nature come here, but also those whose goal is to improve their health, and they are happy to dive into shallow travertines. Among those open for swimming, one of the most popular is Cleopatra’s Pool.
The attraction is located far from the tourist centers, therefore, going here from the nearest resort town, you need to be prepared for a long trip. By the way, the fragile walls of limestone travertines are susceptible to damage, and it is forbidden to walk on many of them. In order to walk on the rest, you will have to take off your shoes. This rule is closely monitored by the guards.
2. Waitomo Caves, New Zealand
The Waitomo Caves in New Zealand’s Waikato region are interesting in their own right, with intricate limestone outgrowths and bizarre passages created centuries ago. But what makes them truly unique and worth seeing are the «inhabitants» of the Firefly Cave. These are thousands of mushroom mosquitoes, which, accumulating on its vaults, create the effect of a “starry sky”.
3. Lake Retba, Senegal
Going to Senegal, you should understand that there are so many colorful sights that it is unlikely that you will be able to visit everything at once. But what is definitely worth your attention is the mysterious «pink lake» — Retba — one of the most beautiful places on Earth. It looks like a picture from a children’s book — snow-white shores and pink water. The oldest cyanobacteria living in the salt lake are responsible for such an unusual color.
Getting there is quite easy: the lake is located only 30 km from the local capital, Dakar. In the city, you will certainly be offered taxi services; trips to this attraction are incredibly popular.
4. Dragon trees on Socotra Island, Yemen
If you are Indiana Jones at heart, who likes unexplored lands, you have a direct path to one of the most unusual places in Yemen — Soctor Island. The reason for the fantasy trees growing here is the secreted juice of a bright red color. By making an incision in the bark, you can see how the Dragon Tree begins to “bleed”.
Previously, there were quite a lot of such trees (sometimes thousand years old) in the Canary Islands, but due to the active collection of valuable red resin, their number has significantly decreased. You can still look at a small grove in Yemen.
5. Son Doong Cave, Vietnam
Located in the Vietnamese province of Quang Binh, Son Doong cave is considered the largest in the world. Here you can see passages up to 200 meters high and up to 150 meters wide.
In addition, travelers are delighted with the underground river, as well as the plants under the holes in the cave vaults, due to which the sunlight breaks in. To see the cave, head to Phong Nha Kebang National Park.
6. Uyuni Salt Flats, Bolivia
Listing the most unusual places in the world, one cannot help but recall the Salar de Uyuni. The natural pearl of Bolivia, Uyuni is a saline, that is, a dried-up salt lake. It becomes a real miracle of nature in the rainy season. Covered with a thin layer of water, the salty surface turns into the largest natural mirror in the world. On a fine day, this «mirror» reflects the clear Bolivian sky — the perfect backdrop for a photo.
Beautiful places of the planet (60 photos)
If you like walking in beautiful places, outdoor recreation and just traveling, take note of my post. After all, here are some of the most beautiful places in the world, sights of countries and cities, interesting photos of beautiful places, natural objects and landscapes.
Chia Yi, Taiwan
Hanalai, Kauai. Hawaii
Australian Hyams Beach in Jarvis Bay. The sunny beach is listed in the Guinness Book of Records as the beach with the whitest sand on earth
Yamjoyum Tso Alpine Lake, Tibet
Germany, Saxon Switzerland, Bastei
Rock house, Italy
Railway in the Alps
Pearl of the Pacific, Bora Bora
Chateau Saint-Michel in France
Italy, Paris Cafe
Water cinema, Yao Noi island in Southern Thailand
Lago Martianez, located in Puerto de la Cruz, Tenerife, Spain
Haiku Stairs on Oahu
Fort Baker, San Francisco
Big Sur Bridge, California, USA
Grand Canyon Bridge, USA
On the border of forest and dunes. Fraser Island, Queensland, Australia
Sky Bridge Langkawi, Malaysia
West coast of Norway
Cenote Dive, Mexico City
Capilano Suspension Bridge, North Vancouver County, British Columbia, Canada
Photo of the crystal clear Verzasca River (photo from the bottom, approximately 30m)
Qingdao Bay Bridge
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Armenia. Tatev Monastery Complex
Es Calo des Moro, Spain
Evening Riga, Latvia
Pont du Gard Aqueduct, France — the highest surviving ancient Roman aqueduct
Sky bike attraction, Japan
The beautiful nature of Bouc Pontus in the Pamponne Forest (Broseliande) in Brittany, France
Atlantic road in Norway
Geneva, Switzerland. Crossing of two rivers
Disneyland Paris, France
Hogwarts Express from England to Scotland. On it Harry Potter and his friends went to school.
India. Living bridges of Meghalaya
Longleat Maze UK
Jacob’s ladder is the longest straight ladder in the world. Located on St. Helena, UK
Kypinas Monastery, Epirus, Greece
Napoleon Bridge in the mountains of Slovenia
Boulder Museum. Minsk. Belarus
Lofotr Viking Museum, Norway.
Lake Como, Italy
Extreme transition at altitude
Polusotrow Hel, Poland
Transparent Church, Belgium
Koh Samui Paradise, Thailand
Erawan Waterfall, Thailand
Externsteine - according to giving the rocks were erected by the devil in one night
Boat hotel, Maldives
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The most amazing places on the planet Earth!
There are quite a few places on our planet, upon contemplation of which a storm of enthusiastic exclamations involuntarily breaks out, and a dreamy smile appears on the face.
Some of these places were created by people using modern technologies, but there are also those that were formed in an absolutely natural way — by the forces of nature and certain climatic conditions. There are such places in different parts of the world, and traveling to them can be the ultimate dream for each of us.
Beauty record holders of the Land of the Rising Sun
Hitachi National Seaside Park, which was laid out in 1991 on the site of the former deployment of a military base. The area of the park is 120 hectares, and a great variety of the brightest representatives of the flora grows on its territory: poppies, nemophiles, tulips, sakura, forget-me-nots, daffodils, lilies. The most amazing and incredibly beautiful here is the change of flower cover in accordance with the change of seasons.
The Japanese are proud of another truly heavenly place in their country — a bamboo forest in Kyoto called Sagano. A picturesque alley of thousands of trees is an original, truly amazing picture.
Organized bamboo thickets with an area of 16 square kilometers have a rather attractive feature — the wind seems to be playing gentle, soothing musical tunes on bamboo stalks. The forest is one of hundreds of places included in the officially protected sights of the state.
Takinoue Park is considered the true realm of shibazakura or pink moss flowers. The smallest pink flowers are planted on an area of 100,000 square meters, giving the impression that the traveler is in an amazing land of fairy fairies.
A surreal wisteria tunnel can be called a no less amazing landmark of Japan. The Wisteria Tunnel is located in a garden in the city of Kitakuyushu. Wisteria creepers gently fall from all sides, tightly braiding the tunnel frame. Multi-colored thickets give the impression of a complete picture of the surreal direction, creating a fabulous, magical atmosphere.
Vibrant landscapes of modern China
In China, perhaps the most popular beach is the Red Beach of Panjin, located from the city of the same name at a distance of about 25 kilometers. The beach is called red because of the many small algae, thanks to which by autumn it becomes, as it were, covered with a bright red dense carpet.
Only a small part of the beach is publicly accessible for tourists, and its main territory is considered a reserved, protected area.
Canola flower fields can be called a picturesque and eye-catching place in China. Every spring, Yunnan province in the east turns into a yellow sea of flowers, attracting numerous visitors. At this time, rapeseed flowers (canola) are in full bloom here, turning ordinary fields into vibrant works of art.
Yuanjiajie Park is a non-trivial, bright corner created by nature. This is Mount Tianji, located at an altitude of 1250 meters above sea level. In good weather, from the top of the mountain you can see the stunning surrounding landscapes, including almost 2 thousand other mountain peaks. There is also an original bridge called «Connecting Hearts».
Gansu Province is famous for its Zhangye Danxia Colored Cliffs, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2010. Scattered ridges of rocks, painted in different colors of the rainbow, contain a large number of isolated caves in their depths.
Scientific studies have proven that earlier in this area there were water basins, which dried up during global cataclysms and left such a multi-colored trace. Now there are many boardwalk tourist routes.
Aesthetically strict Germany
The city of Bonn can be called an isolated landmark of Germany. Being one of the largest cities, Bonn consists entirely of small streets, which have a large number of historical and architectural monuments.
The Elector’s Castle, the Cathedral, the Old Town Hall — these and many other buildings make up the richest historical heritage of the world level. The city also has a large number of museums, there is even a whole museum quarter.
Black Forest Black Forest — another pride of Germany, located in the south of the country. This forest can be called a separate estate with its own natural infrastructure and the presence of the brightest representatives of flora and fauna. Here the Danube originates, there are numerous lakes and waterfalls. In addition, the Black Forest was quite successfully and colorfully described in the works of the brothers Grimm and Wilhelm Hauff, who inhabited it with witches and magical creatures.
The most presentable corners of the world space
Salar de Uyuni or the Uyuni salt marsh is called the largest and most beautiful lake in the world. It is located almost 4 thousand meters above sea level. The area of the dried-up salt lake is more than 10 thousand square kilometers, and the thickness of the salt layer at its bottom is from 2 to 8 meters.
The surface of the lake is ideally flat, so after each rain the lake turns into an amazingly beautiful mirror.
In addition to being a productive source of salt, Uyuni is also a scientifically important facility used by astronauts to test and calibrate remote sensing instruments on modern satellites.
Beauty of Mexico
While drilling the Nike mine in Mexico, at a depth of almost 300 meters, the Crystal Cave was discovered. The length of the largest selenite crystals reaches 10 meters, which is why they are called the largest on the planet.
The cave is currently closed for public access, as the descent into it is extremely dangerous without proper training and equipment.
Amazing places in Vietnam
No less famous cave is Son Doong — the largest cave in the world, located in Vietnam. Local residents discovered a unique natural phenomenon back in 1991, and for the whole world it was discovered by researchers in 2009.
The volume of the cave is 38.5 million cubic meters, and it has already formed its own natural resources and even a separate climate.
Tunnel of Love in Ukraine
The Ukrainian «Tunnel of Love», located in Ukraine — in the small town of Klevan, looks like a real portal to the fairy-tale world.
The green crowns of the trees that have closed over the abandoned railway create a peaceful picture. There is a belief that the wishes of lovers made here will surely come true.
The indescribable beauty of Alaska
Mendenhall Ice Caverns in Alaska is considered to be a pretentious creation of nature. During the melting of the Mendenhall Glacier, caves gradually form, in which cracks are created with the help of melt water.
Cracks are converted into individual strokes over time. Unearthly beauty attracts the attention of not only naturalists and tourists from all over the world, but also numerous photographers. Crystal caves can dissolve within two years, and the most persistent, ten-year-old ones, are created in immovable layers of ice.
How Holland will conquer you
Holland is a land of flowers, and spring fields of colorful tulips attract the attention of visitors from all over the world. From March to the end of May, an exhibition is held that gathers a huge number of people in the Könenhof park.
A huge carpet of 17.5 thousand hectares represents many species and varieties of not only tulips, but also other representatives of the flower world.
America will surprise you not only with money
Numerous picturesque sandy rocks, where you can see large gaps, illuminated by the original subdued light, create all the prerequisites for multiple visits. This is the result of centuries of exposure to water and wind and is called Antelope Canyon.
The best time to visit the canyon is autumn and spring, and during heavy rains the visit can even be dangerous. The canyon consists of two parts — the Upper Antelope Canyon and the Lower Canyon, for which separate tourist routes have been developed.
Unique pink lake in Sinegal
Retba (or Pink Lake) is located about 30 kilometers from Dakar in Senegal and has a maximum depth of 3 meters. The channel, which once connected the lagoon to the ocean, was covered with sand due to constant tides, after which a kind of bowl of approximately 3 square kilometers was formed.
After a drought in the 70s and due to the presence of cyanobacteria, the water in the lake turned bright pink. A surprisingly picturesque place attracts many tourists, and an excess of salt allows you to stay on the surface under any conditions.
France — vibrant lavender fields
One of the highlights of Provence in France is its lavender fields.
The artistic landscape is a riot of different shades of purple, and especially for the constant arrivals of tourists, lavender roads have been laid here, crossing cozy villages and farms. Lavender blooms from June to the end of August.
No less bright and attractive are the lavender fields in the UK — in Banstead or Kent.
Amazing Mount Roraima
A unique place on our planet is the location at the junction of Brazil, Guyana and Venezuela «tepui» — table mountain Roraima. This is the highest mountain in the area, the highest peak of which reaches 2810 meters.
The Roraima Plateau is 31 square kilometers, and the 400-meter cliffs surrounding the mountain provide optimal protection. Unique species of plants grow on the plateau, and the fabulous view of the surrounding landscape is created by numerous waterfalls and clouds constantly swirling above the top.
Tour (7 days) Neskoye journey to the places of the Altai Power in Gorno-Altaysk, excursion tour
- What’s included
When: By appointment
The tour lasts about 7 days
- Who else will be with me?
This private tour allows you to attend the event together with other attendees, the number of which may vary
- Need to pay all at once?
No, you can pay nothing at all when booking, but pay in cash already on the spot at the meeting, but in this case availability is not guaranteed.
- May I ask a question before booking?
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