From windswept trees still standing tall to glowing caves, to a place that actually looks like the eye of Sauron, to pink (but not strawberry flavoured) lakes, nature and at times human interference, can be wicked and tricky with its wonders and accidents. We bring to you 30 unearthly, jaw-dropping and eye-popping places you can pin for your future adventure-list.
Oh, you do not always have to be a traveler to see all unreal looking these places but eventually, as and when you get time, you can switch to your Lama legs and trek your way to an otherworldy experience.
1. Fly Geyser, Nevada
It was created accidentally when scientists were exploring sources for geothermal energy.
2. The Floating Islands of Lake Titicaca, Peru
These floating islands are the home of the Uros tribe, one which pre-dates the Incan civilization.
3. Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia
Salar de Uyuni, amid the Andes in southwest Bolivia, is the world’s largest salt flat (also a MIRROR) and a major breeding ground for several species of flamingos.
4. Enchanted Well, Brazil
Found in a dolomite cave, it is known primarily for its highly transparent water – people can easily see through to the cavern floor. Oh, and it contains one of the few populations of blind catfish!
5. Waitomo Glowworm Caves, New Zealand
Known for its population of glowworms (of a species found exclusively in New Zealand), this place greets you with thousands of magical glowworms, as you glide inside the cave. Sigh!
6. The Richat Structure, Africa
The Richat Structure or the Eye of the Sahara is a prominent geological circular feature in the Sahara desert. Earlier believed to be a meteor impact and then a geographical transformation, its origin is still a mystery.
Or, does the eye of Sauron exist for real?
7. Zhangye Danxia Landform In Gansu, China
Known as the “eye candy of Zhangye”, these colourful rocks are the perfect place to win over any art lover’s heart. The unusual colours of the rocks are the result of red sandstone and mineral deposits being laid down over 24 million years.
8. Emerald Ice, Lake Baikal, Russia
Covered in a blanket of stunning ice sculptures, this vast white landscape is a stunning creation of nature. The naturally formed ice blocks created due to the extreme weather conditions holds one-fifth of the world’s fresh water.
The Son Doong cave in Vietnam is one of the world’s largest caves. It is so huge that it has its own river and jungle. Add a little more than a 200-meter-high, 150-meter-wide and 5-kilometer-long area to its name.
Include it in your bucket list if you haven’t already.
A strange and alien landscape, the rich red dunes that surround the area of this “dead marsh” owe their colour to age. Over thousands of years, the sand has literally rusted.
The Mendenhall Glacier is a 12-mile-long glacier in the Mendenhall Valley, located only 12 miles from downtown Juneau in Southeast Alaska. The Ice Caves inside the glacier and are accessible only to those willing to kayak to, and then ice climb over the glacier.
Once inside, you will earn a lifetime experience – just pack those goddamn bags and go already!
A working mine, best known for its extraordinary selenite crystals, it houses a cave of crystals. Discovered by two miners who were looking for lead in 2001, these amazing crystal-lined caves took hundreds of thousands of years to form.
Known as the ‘Dragon’s blood tree’ because of the red sap it produces, it has a unique and bizarre mushroom-shaped appearance. This remarkable tree has been economically important for centuries.
Who would have thought there was a tree somewhere which looked like an umbrella kept upside-down!
A group of unusually shaped hills, located in the middle of the island of Bohol, in the Philippines, this extraordinary landscape is unique to this small island. Despite an abundant presence of the hills, their origin is unclear.
15. Mount Roraima, South America
Mount Roraima, an enormous flat-topped mountain has its cliffs rising from one of the most remote areas of the Amazon rain forest. These tabletop mountains are considered some of the oldest geological formations, dating back to over two billion years ago.
Located in the northern part of the Hunan Province, Tianzi Mountains resemble thin and long vertical strips rising from the ground. Known as the ‘Monarch of the Peak Forest’, with peaks rising one after the other, it provides for a stunning view.
A saline lake on the edge of Middle Island, Lake Hillier stands out as a pink coloured lake in the middle of nowhere-pink in Australia. This pink body of water is notable for its high salt content.
It can be easily mistaken for a pool of strawberry milkshake (BUT it is not).
A slot canyon in the American Southwest, Antelope Canyon includes two separate, photogenic slot canyon sections. Located on Navajo land east of Arizona, it is quite a stunning work of nature’s art!
19. The Wave, Arizona
A sandstone rock formation situated in Arizona, The Wave is an inviting challenge for hikers and photographers for its colourful, undulating wave-like forms to experiment with.
20. Shimmering Shores of Vaadhoo, Maldives
Known as ‘heaven on earth’, the shining waters look like a mirror, that reflect the twinkling stars above. The trick is done by the phytoplanktons which are bioluminescent and reflect the blue colour.
Obviously, a shining beach > any other beach.
21. Abraham Lake, Canada
Abraham Lake, an artificially created lake in Canada is every photographer’s delight during winters. The frozen bubbles of methane trapped in the lake look like jewels shining from beneath the lake.
Lake Retba’s distinct pink colour is caused by the Dunaliella salina bacteria, which is attracted by the lake’s salt content. This unusually pink lake’s salt content compares to that of the Dead Sea and during the dry season it exceeds it.
Located in the Yellowstone National Park, it is the largest hot spring in the United States. Remarkable, not just for its size, the hot spring radiates extremely hot water and stunning prismatic colours.
The Kuang Si Falls is a three tier waterfall that lasts for about 29 kilometres. The water collects in numerous turquoise beautiful blue pools before it flows downstream.
Swim away into a dream!
25. Ice Cave Near The Mutnovsky Volcano, Russia
The Ice cave, where ice and fire meet to create an otherworldly sight, was carved out of the glacier by an underground river that has its source in a hot spring gushing from the Mutnovsky volcano itself. Believe it or not, this place ACTUALLY exists.
26. Door to Hell, Derweze, Turkmenistan
‘Door to Hell’ is a burning pool of lava in Turkmenistan’s Karakum Desert and looks exactly like what the gateway to the hell would look like in our imagination – red, hot, steamy and out-of-nowhere.