I have always loved nature. My parents instilled a love and appreciation for this earth in me at a young age on multiple road trips to the U.S. National Parks, beaches, rock formations, forests and more. The older I get the more this love grows and the more I begin to bond with others over the love for the outdoors. I asked 89 different travel bloggers what their favorite natural site is and the responses I got have been inspirational & awe-inspiring and have made for one pretty great Must-See List for myself and hopefully for you as well!
⋙ 1 Dad 1 Kid – Reynisdrangar, Iceland ⋘
One of my favorite natural sites is near the Icelandic coastal town of Vík. This spot, named Reynisdrangar, has a black beach, a cave with adjoining basalt columns and a few large pillars in the ocean. Standing there makes you feel like you’re in a mythological land.
⋙ Adventure In You – Mount Bromo, Indonesia ⋘
We woke up at 3am to hike to the view point to see the famous sunrise over Mount Bromo in Jakarta Indonesia. The views that we saw that day did not disappoint. This photo captures the sun slowly rising over the clouds that cover the area. It was breathtaking!
⋙ Adventures of a Carry On – Big Sur, California, U.S.A. ⋘
The Big Sur coast, located between Los Angeles and San Francisco has got to be my favorite place to commune with nature. California’s iconic Highway 1 passes through Big Sur and it’s the only way to get there. I truly think Big Sur is the ultimate destination for nature lovers with towering redwood trees, breath-taking drops to the ocean below and intimate coves. There are a variety of hotels from luxury to more rustic plus great camping spots. If nature is your thing, book a campground well in advance. However, the off season is great and the weather is agreeable. I think it makes more sense to visit nature when everyone else isn’t.
⋙ Am I Nearly There Yet? – Bruny Island, Tasmania ⋘
Our all-time favourite natural destination has to be Bruny Island in Tasmania! Tasmania is an island to the south of Australia – It’s quiet, unspoiled, and very, very beautiful! While we were travelling around Bruny Island, we’d sleep in our van and get up every morning for sunrise and rundown to the beach ready with the camera and tripod! The colours were jaw-droppingly amazing! We also got some epic night time campfire shots at the same place! So if you’re looking for off the beaten travel natural beauty, get yourself to Tasmania.
⋙ Amanda’s Wanderlust – Okavango, Botswana ⋘
The natural wonder which stole my heart is the Okavango Delta in Botswana, which I visited in 2014. Okavango was declared the 1000th UNESCO World Heritage Site earlier that year, and is one of the world’s last remaining wildernesses. It is the largest inland delta in the world, an expanse of almost 15,000 km2 of grassland, seasonal wetland, and swamps nestled in a tectonic trough in the Kalahari Desert, North-West Botswana. Okavango is a haven for wildlife – particularly a wide diversity of bird species – which helped secure it’s place as one of the seven natural wonders of Africa. The best way to get close to some of that amazing flora and fauna is by a boat and I totally recommend staying on a houseboat. The area has a low population density, and it’s not uncommon to spend days there without bumping in to other people, making it perfect for a peaceful break and wildlife photography. The perfect escape for any wildlife enthusiast.
⋙ Amble Unbound – Mt. McKinley, Alaska, U.S.A. ⋘
Mount McKinley in Alaska left me stunned. I spent all summer hearing the stories of how majestic this mountain is and waiting for the dense cloud cover of Denali National Park to clear. One last bus ride in to the park revealed the most earth shattering, awe inspiring natural wonder I have ever seen.
⋙ American Abroad Story – Rainbow Beach, Australia ⋘
The first time I ever came here, one of my Australian friends had brought me and some of my American friends home for the weekend. At sunset he lead us up to the sandblow, but made us close our eyes so we couldnt see anything and finally let us open them when we were standing in the middle of the Sandblow. Needless to say it was completely breathtaking, and I have been back to the Sandblow 3 or 4 more times since, and each time the velvet sand between my toes made me feel so small, and appreciative of the beautiful, beautiful world we live in!
⋙ Andalucia Explorer – Olive Groves, Spain ⋘
Overlooking an ocean of olive groves in Jaen, Andalucia – The province I live in and the olive capital.
⋙ Anekdotique – Cotopaxi Volcano, Ecuador ⋘
Summer 2015 I travelled though Ecuador and spent some days in the beautiful Avenue of the Volcanoes. One the most well-known ones is called Cotopaxi, an 5,897 m active stratovolcano in the Andes Mountains. You actually don’t have to climb up, even from the Cotopaxi Nationalpark you have stunning views like this.
⋙ Another Walk in the Park – White Point, Canada ⋘
My favorite place is undoubtedly the northern coastline of Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia. The light here bewitches, the crashing of the waves calms the soul, and the colors are some of the most vivid and saturated I’ve ever seen. Views of the dramatic cerulean ocean, emerald moss carpeting the headlands, fractured pink gneiss cliffs, and forests of dark green hemlocks and balsam firs make it a magical place.
⋙ Anywhere at Home – Las Grutas de Mamut, Mexico ⋘
We visited Las Grutas de Mamut outside of San Cristobal de las Casas in the southern state of Chiapas, Mexico while mountain biking. Discovered in 2011— when the government declined to excavate the cave, locals banded together to discover as much of the cave as they could. For visitors, it’s awe-inspring to walk through the large, ballroom like rooms of the Grutas de Mamut. For the most adventurous, a deep crawl into the belly of the cave is also possible.
⋙ Aperture of My Soul – Sedona, Arizona, U.S.A. ⋘
The amazing red rock monoliths and landscape beg to be hiked and explored. Sedona’s free spirit inspires you to casts your cares to the wind and relax. Its rugged beauty can take your breath away!
⋙ Autumn Aquarius – Grand Prismatic Spring, Wyoming, U.S.A. ⋘
Mine is The Grand Prismatic Spring in Yellowstone National Park. It’s so amazing and HUGE! I have never in my life seen anything like that before. This Earth is so full of wonders waiting to be discovered.
⋙ B Travels Better – Blanca Lake, Washington, U.S.A. ⋘
Though it isn’t exotic or anything, I am from Seattle and spend a lot of time hiking in the Northern Cascade Mountain Range. It is filled with beautiful glacier fed lakes like Blanca Lake.
⋙ Backpacking Detours – Zion National Park, Utah, U.S.A. ⋘
The hiking trail at Angel’s landing, Zion National Park, Utah. It’s a fun hike with beautiful views and a huge excitement factor with steep cliffs on both sides of the trail.
⋙ Backroad Planet – Madison Blue Spring, Florida, U.S.A. ⋘
Madison Blue Spring is a first-magnitude spring located in one of Florida’s lesser-known state parks. The beauty of this location is not just the crystal-clear waters that gush from underground into a mixed hardwood and pine forest. In its short run, the water flow arcs around limestone formations and a white sandy bottom, and then merges with the brown tannic waters of the Withlacoochee River, in the process creating countless shades and hues of yellow, green, and blue.
⋙ Backstreet Nomad – Lake Rotoit, New Zealand ⋘
Earlier this year I spent a night in a campervan at Lake Rotoiti, which is one of the larger lakes of Nelson Lakes National Park in New Zealand. We were there on an overcast, yet very still day and the reflection of the distant mountains on the lake was just sublime. We were even joined by a few feathered friends, but what you can’t see are about 50 eels under that jetty.
⋙ Bel Around the World – Mount Titlis, Switzerland ⋘
This photo captures the essence of nature’s beauty. When I’m on top of the world, looking down on earth’s creation, the sight of the snow-capped mountains took my breath away. I felt like I just stepped into a wallpaper and my eyes couldn’t quite leave this sight. There and then, I told myself I would commit this to memory forever.
⋙ Birdy Abroad – Cintsa, South Africa ⋘
I went travelling for the first time in 2009 after being inspired by my big sister. I landed in South Africa incredibly homesick, I cried myself to sleep and I woke up the next morning wanting to go home. Then I looked out of the window and this was the view that greeted me.
⋙ Bonfire Dream – Tatras Mountains, Slovakia/Poland ⋘
Tatras are not very huge and well-known mountains. But I dare to claim that they can compete with any. Their beauty is impossible to capture on the paper, they are majestic yet they seem to have a sense of home and cosiness in them. When one walks through them, it is almost like entering another world, the one created by fairies.
⋙ Boracay Compass – Tambisaan Beach, The Philippines ⋘
My favorite natural site is Tambisaan Beach in Boracay Island. It’s a little known off the beaten path beach with a lot to offer. It offers a great snorkeling experience, privacy, and a secret forest and sister beach nearby. This is one of the places in Boracay where you can truly be alone and at peace with nature…
⋙ By Invitation – Beach at San Blas, Mexico ⋘
The town of San Blas is on the West side of Mexico, just North of Puerto Vallarta in the Riviera Nayarit region. It is the home for two National Parks, rolling hills of lush vegetation, palm trees and fields of tobacco, its aroma ever present at the side of the roads. The coastal beaches of golden sand stretch out over 43 miles yet seem empty almost all the time. This is where Mexicans go for holiday, and foreign tourists are hardly ever found, although those that make the trip there are treated to the best food and care you could ever dream of.
⋙ Chantae Was Here – Gnaraloo, Australia ⋘
In one of the most remote corners of the world, Gnaraloo in Western Australia sees more whale visitors — who migrate along the coastline every year — than people. On the surface, the area seems completely desolate of any form of life. Cinnamon colored desert gives way to the churning Indian ocean without any evidence of modern civilization in sight. However, if you simply stick around, you’ll see mobs of kangaroos come out at sunset and stray goats climb nearby buttes once the weather cools down. Under the water, Gnaraloo hosts part of the Ningaloo Reef, home to thousands of species of corals, fish, turtles, and dolphins. I love Gnaraloo because it’s one of the last few places left in the world that feels completely undiscovered.
⋙ Cheers to Traveling – Lake District, England, U.K. ⋘
For me, a natural spot that has completely stolen my heart is the Lake District in northwest England, famous for its lakes, mountains and forests. This photo was taken in May of this year after completing my favorite hike I’ve ever done. It was so neat walking on a trail called The Band into the clouds on the mountain peaks.
⋙ Communication is Difficult – Halong Bay, Vietnam ⋘
Located 3 hours driving outside of the northern Vietnamese capital is the breath-taking Ha Long Bay. It’s name comes from the thousands of limestone islands that tower over you as you float through the waterways, which were gifted by dragons to help protect the country against invasion. The dragons then descended into the bay, which is what Ha Long stands for (descending dragon)! It’s truly a magical place to visit, and taking a tour around the bay by boat is one of my favorite travel experiences!
⋙ Crizzy Kiss – Sognsvann, Norway ⋘
With all the places to choose from in Norway, one of my favorite nature getaways in Norway is a little place called Sognsvann, a lake on the outskirts of Oslo. Sognsvann is popular easy place for city dwellers to get to. It has walking, jogging, picnicking, camping, bathing or fishing during the summer or autumn days. It is also a perfect place for snow fun like like cross-country skiing and skating during the long cold dark winter months.
⋙ Curiosity & A Carry On – Fjords, Iceland ⋘
Driving through the West Fjords in Iceland was one of the most memorable experiences of my life. The blues and greens swirl together like a watercolor painting, vast and virtually untouched. The rugged coastline sparkles in the sun and feels mystical in the fog. Truly an unforgettable experience.
⋙ Dea Sihotang – Fatukolen, Indonesia ⋘
First time when I saw this site, I already felt in love, since it makes me feel like I am in ancient era, probably in The Lord of The Ring movies scene. You can find this huge stone from SOE to Mutis National Park. The vast savannah surrounding the stones, also make the area looks beautifully unique. Have a visit to this site while you are visiting East Nusa Tenggara.
⋙ Drifter Planet – Matanga Hill, India ⋘
Matanga Hill in Hampi is the highest point in this city of ruins. This hill offers spectacular views of Hampi’s famous landmarks that have collectively been given the status of UNESCO World Heritage Site. On top of the hill is an ancient Veerabhadra Temple and there are steps that lead to the roof of that temple. When we visited, we were the only ones on top and got to enjoy a few hours in savoring in the breathtaking view.
⋙ Everything Candid – Chandratal, India ⋘
Chandratal which literally means moon shaped lake (Chandra means moon & tal means lake in Hindi) is situated at a height of 4270 meters and 8 KMs away from the one of the highest motorable asses of the world i.e. Kunzum Pass which connects Spiti & Lahaul Valleys of Himachal Pradesh, India. It’s a very coveted place among adventurer due to tough terrain and difficult access to this lake. Only for 4-5 months in a year it can be accessed with a motorable road. This is one of those stunning lake in high himalyan region which has been inspiring travelers since generation with its mystic beauty spread amidst snowcapped Himalayan peaks. these peaks creats awesome refelctions on the canvas of this deep blue water lake. Its one of those places where you can sit for hours and hours lost in the beauty forever.
⋙ Expecto Adventures – Horseshoe Bend, Arizona, U.S.A. ⋘
A 270 degree twist of the Colorado River, Horseshoe Bend is locted near the Grand Canyon in Arizona, USA. It’s a little bit of a hike to reach this point, but it is well-worth the trip. Soaking in the magnificent view from the edge of the 1,000 foot cliff is truly an experience you’ll never forget!
⋙ Fit Travels – Worlds End, Sri Lanka ⋘
Sri Lanka’s World’s End is a 1200m sheer cliff drop located in Horton Plains National Park. On a clear day visitors can see all the way to the coast which is 80km in the distance. The 9km round trip hike to World’s End is best started just after sunrise. By 10am the clouds have rolled in and you won’t be able to see much. Located 2300m above sea level it can be quite chilly and the air a little thiner than you might be used to, so come prepared! It’s also very windy so be careful when attempting any edge of the cliff photos.
⋙ Flashpacker Family – Arches National Park, Utah, U.S.A. ⋘
Southern Utah is mind-blowing. Utah has the highest concentration on National Parks in the US but the one that really captured my heart on our road trip around Southern Utah was Arches National Park. The rich red rock contrasts so beautifully against the bright blue sky. You can walk right up and under many of the arches which feels much more interactive than at other parks when you’re just staring down into a canyon. Many of the hiking trails in the park are short and manageable for kids which is a huge bonus.
⋙ Flashpacking Duo – Lulworth Cove, England, U.K. ⋘
Lulworth Cove is a stunning natural sight on the beautiful Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site in Dorset. Only an hour away from where we live we spend a lot of time here exploring the caves, fossil forest and kayaking around the cove. It also featured in the 2013 film ‘World War Z’.
⋙ For the Love of Wanderlust – Max Patch, North Carolina, U.S.A. ⋘
Max Patch is one of the most special places in the entire world for me. It’s located on the Appalachian Trail and when you get to the top of this bald mountain you get an incredible 360 degree view of the Blue Ridge Mountains. I love standing at the top among the wild flowers or sharing a sunset with my amazing fiancé. It’s a place where I find peace and bliss each and every time.
⋙ Getaway Mavens – Adirondacks, New York, U.S.A ⋘
With over six million acres, the Adirondacks Park in Upstate New York is larger than Yellowstone, Yosemite, Grand Canyon, Glacier, and the Great Smoky Mountains National Parks combined. The forest preserve has been a popular tourist destination since the mid-1800’s and many of the same attractions—formidable peaks, over 10,000 pristine lakes, and 30,000 miles of trout-laden rivers and streams—draw repeat visitors year round. As the site of the 1980 Winter Olympics, it goes without saying that the region is great for snow sports. But in autumn, when fall leaves turn kaleidoscope bright, Adirondack Park is a magnificent painting come to life.
⋙ Getting Stamped – Serengeti, Tanzania ⋘
Pride rock really does exist, and you get pictures to prove it in the Serengeti. Watching lions in their natural habitat is my favorite thing in the world. The Serengeti is like the real-life Lion King the movie we all loved as children Nothing connects you more with nature than camping under the African stars, hearing the lions roaring from inside your tent. On our last trip to the Serengeti, we even saw 15 lions in one tree, yes 15 lions! The Serengeti is a magical place.
⋙ Ghowneu Adventure – Crow Pass Trail, Alaska, U.S.A. ⋘
This photo was taken summer 2015, my journey to Crow Pass Trail here in Girdwood, Alaska. This trail is filled with awesome sceneries filled with lakes, glacier, rocks and the historic Iditarod trail, I definitely enjoyed hiking Crow Pass. It’s a very dramatic landscape with a lot of “awe” moments and inspiring how beautiful nature is.
⋙ Girl Unspotted – El Nido, Philippines ⋘
One day, I found myself in the middle of a beautiful lagoon with the clearest water. Located in such an otherworldly, almost surreptitious surrounding, it was love at first sight. Complete with hidden beaches with sands so pure and immaculate, the lagoons of El Nido, Palawan in the archipelago of the Philippines is one of my favorite natural sites in the world.
⋙ Go Travel Your Own Way – Naray, Afghanistan ⋘
This photo was taken in Afghanistan, in Naray to be more specific. It’s a little village located near the border to Pakistan. The drive from Kabul was truly stunning and once again I was amazed by the beautiful country side of Afghanistan which has so much to offer.
⋙ Great Big Globe – Vintgar Gorge, Slovenia ⋘
Vintgar Gorge is 1.6km gorge located near the famous Lake Bled in Slovenia. Carved out by the Radova River, this gorge features beautiful natural pools, rapids and waterfalls. The stunning blue water and dramatic canyon walls are a photographer’s dream. You can spend an entire afternoon meandering through the bridges and trails which lead you Sum Falls, the largest river waterfall in Slovenia!
⋙ Gringos Locos – Palenque, Mexico ⋘
Our family loved Palenque. Not only are the Maya pyramids amazing, but after climbing up and down hundreds of steps you can visit a beautiful waterfall in the park. Palenque is in the state of Chiapas, Mexico. It is very close to the Belize border. The palace and temples are in great condition. It is a fantastic history lesson for adults and kids alike. Put it on your bucket list. You won’t regret it!
⋙ In the Loop Travel – Kythnos, Greece ⋘
A view from high on a hill on the island of Kythnos, Greece, in the Aegean Sea. One of the Cycladic island, Kythnos boasts stunning natural beauty, enjoyed through its hiking trails, beaches and blue waters and more.
⋙ The Insightful Wanderer – Niagara Falls Canada/United States ⋘
I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else. Living only a few hours away from Niagara Falls Canada, so that I can visit it often, makes me the luckiest girl on the planet. It’s thunderous magic enthrals me every time and I could stand by its railing forever. Every single time I leave that waterfall I leave a peace of myself behind in the mist.
⋙ Life in Transience – Lake Bohinj, Slovenia ⋘
Lake Bohinj, a glacier lake in Slovenia, left me breathless. The clear blue water and the Alps peeking over in the background made me feel like I was in a postcard, or a playground for mermaids. Everything was so vivid and serene, when I need to mentally escape the chaos of everyday life, that’s where I picture myself.
⋙ Little Things Travel – Grand Mesa, Colorado, U.S.A. ⋘
I fell in love with nature a long time ago and its beauty never fails to put me in awe. One of my favorite natural destinations is Grand Mesa National Forest in my current home state of Colorado. I caught these two little guys up at the Land’s End Observatory overlooking this beautiful view!
⋙ London Unattached – Faia Brava National Park, Portugal ⋘
You don’t imagine anywhere in Europe like this.
⋙ Memories of Morocco – Tundavala, Angola ⋘
Tundavala near the city of Lubango is a breathtaking gorge, where a deep ravine slices into the edge of the vertical cliff, offering a spectacular view over the valley 1,000 meters below.
⋙ Migrating Miss – Great Barrier Reef, Australia ⋘
The Great Barrier Reef is my favourite natural site in the world. This world wonder can actually be seen from outer space, but for me the magic was in completing my Open Water Diving Certification in the depths of the Pacific Ocean, gliding around and through the largest living thing on each, the Great Barrier Reef itself. It really is like another world down there, a stunningly beautiful one, with coral of all colours and kinds, and so many different living things. I definitely found Nemo down there too!
⋙ My Tan Feet – Manuel Antonio National Park, Costa Rica ⋘
Manuel Antonio National Park is the smallest but one of the most popular national parks in Costa Rica for two main reasons: the nature and the wildlife. You can see 3 of the 4 species of monkeys present in Costa Rica, two and three toed sloths, Jesus Christ lizards, toucans, frogs and all sorts of wildlife hiking the many trails in the national park that has both primary and tropical lowland wet forests. There are also 4 beautiful beaches excellent for snorkeling, boasting white sand and bright blue and green water. The park is also home to many dolphins, whales and other marine creatures out in the open waters, making it a favorite for any wildlife lover
⋙ No Back Home – Yosemite National Park, California, U.S.A. ⋘
Yosemite National Park in California is our family’s favorite natural site. The sheer beauty of the park, the abundance of trails for all skill levels, the close encounters with wild animals (bear, deer, bobcats and more) and the way that you can fully immerse yourself in nature makes it one of our top places to visit.
⋙ Nomadic Boys – Kuang Si Waterfall, Laos ⋘
Our favourite natural site in the world is the Kuang Si Waterfall in Luang Prabang in Laos. We visited there in March 2015 on a Sunday morning. It’s popular to climb to the top part of it and jump down this mini fall. A group of young monks were also there bathing and jumping and it made the whole experience that little bit more unique – diving with the monks!
⋙ One Long Stride – Andavadoaka, Madagascar ⋘
This is a photo of Andavadoaka Rock, just off the coast of Andavadoaka, South West Madagascar. It’s a natural rock formation attached to the second largest barrier reef in the World. The Malagasy people have many stories about the rock and it is central to their local folklore. I have always loved Andavadoaka for the people, the incredible diving, the beautiful landscape and this mysterious lone rock out at sea. Unfortunately, like many beautiful things, time has taken it’s toll and the arch recently collapsed, but the folklore will always live on.
⋙ One Modern Couple – Teapot Mountain, Taiwan ⋘
The mountains around Jiufen are incredibly scenic and there are many great hiking trails but our favourite of them is Teapot Mountain. So named because of the teapot-looking cluster of rocks at the top, the trail is tricky and takes you right through the boulders of the teapot itself! It is truly an awe-inspiring natural site and the views from pretty much anywhere, at the foot of the mountain or at the top, are stunning.
⋙ The Path She Took – The Scottish Highlands, Scotland, U.K. ⋘
My favorite natural site in the world is in the Scottish Highlands. I hiked for several days, and every day I was getting a bit further from roads and society. The hardest part of the trail was the way up Conic Hill. I was out of breath, wondering why the hell I was doing this to myself, when I reached the top. And I was blown away. Literally, because the wind was really strong. And figuratively, because look at what was in front of me.
⋙ The Roaming Renegaders – Bernese Mountains, Switzerland ⋘
Our absolute favourite natural site in the world has to be the Bernese Alps in the heart of Switzerland. Seeing the Eiger, Monch and Jungfrau from the summit of the Schilthorn was the most amazing view we have ever seen, nothing has ever some close. It is everything you ever dreamt the Swiss Alps would be and more. The nearby town of Interlaken is also the adventure capital of the world, if you want to do something wild and crazy, here is the place!
⋙ Roar Loud – Kilimanjaro, Tanzania ⋘
Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa, one of the Seven Summits and a magnificent National park also! In September I climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro up the Machame route on a challenging adventure that took 7 days. Each day we would enter a new climate zone starting in the rain forest and ending in the arctic zone. I highly recommend the hike for anyone who wants to have a life changing experience!
⋙ Rocky Travel – Jervis Bay, Australia ⋘
An ancient, natural region, only 200 km from Sydney, on the South East Coast of Australia. A heaven for nature lovers, this place has the whitest beaches of Australia and a very pristine eco-marine system. In season you can see humpback whales, dolphins and many fishes, corals. It’s one of my favourite places because of the amazing nature and its coastal walks along the coast, along the beach and in the ancient national parks that skirt the coastline. It’s also a great place to enjoy relaxation.
⋙ The Runaway Italian – San Nicola Arcella, Italy ⋘
San Nicola Arcella, located in the Gulf of Policastro, is a small Calabrian town in the Riviera of the Cedars. In recent years it has become a valued and popular beach town located on a cliff 110 metres above sea level at the foot of which is a bay enclosed by a rocky arm that gives it the shape of a natural harbour. The town is well known for its extraordinary natural arch, Arco Magno, that was created in the hard rock probably carved by the sea, thus opening the way to a small beach which is like paradise. Its seaside location therefore provides a natural setting of incomparable beauty and I challenge you to find a more romantic and breathtaking spot in the whole of Italy!
⋙ Sailing Totem – Suwarrow, Cook Islands
Suwarrow is an atoll in the Cook Islands; it’s roughly in the center of the Pacific. The only way to get there is by boat- yours, or someone you know. Other than a couple of rangers who camp there during the non-cyclone season, it’s uninhabited. And uninhabited, in the middle of the Pacific, means vibrant coral reefs and marine life – probably the best we’ve ever seen, and given a full-time lifestyle of sailign the tropics, that’s significant! (It also means a LOT of washed-up plastic and garbage that’s been floating in the ocean… a really sad footnote to an otherwise spectacular spot).
⋙ Santa Fe Travelers – Grand Canyon, Arizona, U.S.A. ⋘
If I were to make a list of the seven natural wonders of the world, Grand Canyon would be on it. You’ve seen photos; there are countless numbers of them out there. But in reality, no matter how good the photo, none of them does it justice. You really have to go to Arizona and see it in person. The views from the South Rim are literally breath-taking, awe-inspiring, stunning. The light on the ages-old strata of rock formed by the uplift of the Colorado Plateau and the erosion of the Colorado River tens of millions of years ago, changes almost from moment to moment. I could sit at one spot and stare at it all day. No matter where you go on the rim, the view will be different because of the ever-changing light. Go to different viewing spots along the rim and the vistas will change. From some you can see deep into the canyon, sometimes you can see the Colorado River over a mile below. The sheer beauty of Grand Canyon makes it my favorite natural site.
⋙ Savored Journeys – Haystack Rock, Oregon, U.S.A. ⋘
I’ve always loved the Oregon coast. Growing up, I spent most summers there, admiring the vast beauty, building sandcastles and looking at colorful sea creatures in the abundant tide pools. One of my favorite spots on the coast is Haystack Rock in Cannon Beach, a 235-foot sea stack that is one of the tallest in the world, an incredibly impressive natural wonder.
⋙ Savvy Globetrotter – Antarctica ⋘
Antarctica is by far my favorite natural site. The white continent can only be described as hauntingly beautiful and a privilege to travel to. From the wildlife to the icebergs, this natural site rightfully earns a spot on many bucket lists.
⋙ Silver Backpacker – Mayon Volcano, The Philippines ⋘
⋙ Six Year Gap Year – Cerro Negro, Nicaragua ⋘
This is the incredible view from the top of Cerro Negro, an active volcano in Nicaragua. I love how the crater is still steaming, the black volcanic rock in total contrast with the lush jungle around it, and the fact that you can throw yourself down it on a plank of wood!
⋙ Taylor’s Tracks – Lake Louise, Canada ⋘
I tend to fall for sites that include huge landscapes, usually mountains, that take my breath away. One of those sites was Lake Louise, it’s water that was the perfect aqua colour that reflected the Rocky Mountains that framed the lake. I could take a picture and not have to edit it because the natural landscape was enough on its own. It’s one of those places that you must go back to just to see if in every season, because each season will bring a new beauty to it, and leave you once again in awe.
⋙ This Wild Romance – Sierra Nevada Mountains, California, U.S.A. ⋘
I had never been to a place as breathtaking as the Sierra Nevada mountain range. It had the freshest air, and the clearest skies I had ever seen, allowing me to look for miles and miles ahead of me. It was there, getting lost in the midst of the mountains, 1100 feet up, that I felt most grounded.
⋙ Travel Addicts – Galapagos, Ecuador ⋘
One of the most amazing natural sites in the world is the Galapagos. Off the coast of Ecuador, this archipelago is a naturalist’s dream – dozens of species that have evolved into completely endemic groups. It was here that Darwin advanced his theory of evolution by studying the unique animals he found. Both above and below the water, the Galapagos amazes visitors who have a thirst for learning about nature. It’s easy to see why this was the world’s first UNESCO World Heritage Site.
⋙ Travel Food Health – Grand Tetons, Wyoming, U.S.A. ⋘
While working for the Department of Interior – National Park Service (NPS), I was able to get a realistic feeling for what it’s like to work and live in a National Park; there’s a natural beauty to Grand Teton National Park.
⋙ Travel Photo Discovery – Komodo Island, Indonesia ⋘
Recently I went on a trip to Komodo Island in Indonesia, a series of islands that with stunning landscape along with the famous Komodo Dragon. One of my favorite stops was late in the afternoon on Padar island where trekking up to the peak to see the amazing vista below and surrounding islands is the highlight to visiting the national park. Head out there late in the afternoon for the best light and perfect sunsets.
⋙ Travel Pray Love – Hallerbos, Belgium ⋘
My favourite natural site in the world (so far) is Hallerbos, located in Halle, Belgium. This forest is easily the most peaceful place I have ever experienced, and seems like something of a fairy tale. The months of April – May are the best time to visit this paradise, because the bluebells line the grassy floors of the forest as far as the eye can see. Hiking, horseback riding and camping are all permitted in this magical place, making it a tourist attraction for everyone.
⋙ The Travel Sisters – Iguazu Falls, Argentina/Brazil ⋘
The almighty Iguazu Falls gets our vote for favorite natural site around the world. Bordering both Argentina and Brazil, this waterfall is truly a magnificent sight. We viewed the falls from the Argentinean side, where visitors can appreciate nature’s power close up and even get a little soaked in the process.
⋙ Travel This Earth – Laguna 69, Peru ⋘
This amazingly beautiful, high altitude alpine lake sits at the base of the Pisco peak at more than 15,000 feet, the magestic Cordillera Blanca all around you. Once you get inside of the Huascaran National Park, your transportation drops you off and you can reach the laguna in a day trip. Most people return to Huaraz in the afternoon with tour groups but if you were feeling extra adventurous like me, you could pitch a tent and spend the night staring up at the stars, listening to chunks off the glacier fall off and make a thunderous splash into the water below.
⋙ Travel with Bender – Bow Lake, Canada ⋘
Many people prefer the nearby famous Lake Louise, but you don’t need to travel much further to see this. One of the smaller lakes in western Alberta, but positioned at an altitude of 1,920 metres (6,299 feet). Bow Lake is the closest lake to the headwaters of Bow River and easily the most spectacular natural site of the Icefields Parkway and possibly the world.
⋙ Traveling Nine to Fiver – Coastal Redwoods, California, U.S.A. ⋘
One of my favorite natural sites is visiting the Coastal Redwoods in Santa Cruz, California. Just 20 minutes from downtown Santa Cruz you will find these beautiful giants. Standing next to trees that are hundreds of years old and taller than many skyscappers is breathtaking. They make you feel like a tiny part of this beautiful world. It’s definitely a wonder not to be missed when you’re visiting Northern California.
⋙ The Travelling Chilli – Sossusvlei, Nambia ⋘
Sossuvlei in Namibia is one of my favourite natural sites in the world. The setting in the Namib desert with the surrounding mountains is just spectacular. The main characteristics are the red dunes, stretching out over an area of about 70 kilometres. They are also some of the highest dunes in the world. When visiting during sunset and sunrise, the glow of the sun gives the dunes this deep red colour on one side of the dune leaving the other side in the shade, giving it an amazing two coloured effect. Once you visit Sossusvlei (vlei means marsh in the local language) you’ll keep on going back.
⋙ Travels With Carole – Tavoro Waterfalls, Fiji ⋘
On Taveuni Island in Fiji, the popular, flat path to Tavoro Waterfalls in Bouma National Heritage Park begins at the visitor center and takes about 15 minutes. The lower falls, which plunges some 600 feet into a big pool, is the most popular and visitors can swim there as well as dive from a cave ledge. Those who are more adventurous can also hike by trail up to the two higher falls, each of which has its own pool.
⋙ Two Drifters – Kalbarri Cliffs, Australia ⋘
Our favorite natural spot is one that was totally unexpected to us. In Western Australia, we stumbled across Kalbarri National Park. Though known for its incredible red gorges, we were completely blown away by its spectacular coastal cliffs. Could have spent all day here.
⋙ Two Monkeys Travel – Pamukkale, Turkey ⋘
Pamukkale literally means Cotton Castle in Turkish and as soon as you set eyes on it, it’s easy to see why. The white hillside is made up of a series of terraced travertines formed by calcium deposits from the natural hot springs that the whole area is famous for. As you climb the calcium hills barefoot, the hot spring water forms pools that you can stop and bathe in, soaking up all the natural minerals on the side of the mountain, with panoramic views all around.
⋙ Voyager – Dudhasgar Waterfalls, India ⋘
In the Indian state of Goa, not far from the capital city of Panaji you find a lovely place called Dudhsagar, which literally means ‘Ocean of Milk’. Nestled in the high peaks of the Western Ghats you fill find this beautiful waterfall which actually looks like a deluge of milk pouring ferociously down the peaks. During the monsoon this idyllic place is in its full natural splendour and one cannot take ones’ eyes of this wonderful sight. Trains pass by the waterfall and passengers can enjoy a vantage view of the falls also.
⋙ Wandering On – Pangong Tso, India/China ⋘
Set in the most remote reaches of Ladakh in Northern India, Pangong Tso straddles the India/China border. Surrounded by a barren mountain-desert landscape, the lake is in an incredibly remote area accessible only in certain parts of the year. Driving to Pangong Tso by motorbike was an adventure we’ll never forget; passing over the Chang La pass, the second highest motorable road pass in the world at 5,360m, driving through streams, military checkpoints, taking shelter from the snow in a yurt with a nomadic family and dealing with a flat tyre, it really was a memorable experience. And it was worth every second to witness this remote location in all it’s glory. Ever-transforming, the colours change right in front of you as the clouds roll on and off the surrounding mountains all the while with only the birds for company, amazing!
⋙ What Boundaries Travel – Limpopo Reserve, South Africa ⋘
⋙ Where is Noodles? – Lake Chala, Tanzania/Kenya ⋘
Located on the border of Tanzania and Kenya, this tranquil location is just one spectacular example of how much natural beauty East Africa has to offer. Lake Chala is believed to be the caldera of a volcanic eruption which happened over 3 million years ago. Now all that remains is a beautiful blue lake surrounded by lush green forest, where you can see an abundance of different monkeys and birdlife if you spend some time kayaking around.
⋙ While I’m Young and Skinny – Lake Tekapo, New Zealand ⋘
My favourite natural site is Lake Tekapo in south island New Zealand. The stunning glacial mountains and icy blue lake just took my breath away! The small town of Tekapo was my first stop on a three month backpacking adventure and I could have easily stayed there, gazing at the lake all day.
⋙ Words of Wander – Sydney’s Northern Beaches, Australia ⋘
t may be an obvious answer (based on where I am right now), but for me Sydney’s Northern Beaches are a sublime portrait of natural beauty. However I am feeling, they manage to left me into a feeling of absolute serenity. In all my life I have never experienced waves so blue and sand so golden.. there really is no better feeling than floating in that crystal clear water and soaking up the expansive and untouched environment around me. I’m also lucky to live at the bottom of the most exquisite headlands: every few days I take myself on a hike up to their peak where I have an overwhelming view of the ocean in all its glory.
⋙ The World Is A Book – Antelope Canyon, Arizona, U.S.A. ⋘
One of my favorite natural sites in the world is Lower Antelope Canyon in
Arizona, USA. These “spiral rock arches” were also one of the most unique
attractions we’ve visited. The towering, orange and tan sandstone walls
were carved by water and wind for centuries eroding it into a narrow slot
canyon. This resulted in some of the most amazing shapes and textures.
This lower area allows visitors to climb ladders and explore the
incredible formations and its narrow canyon walls. It is a photographer’s
dream as sunbeams manage to sneak into the crevices. Its an attraction
that needs to be seen in person to full appreciate its incredible beauty.
⋙ The World Pursuit – Cappadocia, Turkey ⋘
Cappadocia is unlike any other place in the world, hiking in the numerous valleys conjures up images of fairy-tales and distant planets. Sunrise is spectacular as literally hundreds of hot-air balloons rise up to greet the new day. The unique geological features are also home to a network of underground cities and homes dating back thousands of years. There really is no place like it on earth.
⋙ Yet Another Tourist – Strokkur, Iceland ⋘
Strokkur in Iceland, is a natural fountain geyser which erupts every 5-8 minutes. Entry to this site and its surrounding geothermal area is free. The Strokkur erupts frequently and as high as 20m high.
⋙ Ze Wandering Frogs – Monument Valley, Arizona/Utah, U.S.A ⋘
The magic of Monument Valley. Immortalized by so many movies, the famous sandstone buttes are more than just an iconic landscape of the American Old West. Not someone to go to the same site twice, we went to Monument Valley in three occasions and loved them all equally. The sacred ancestral home of the Navajo Nation, the place has a peace to it, filled with history. We were fortunate to explore it horseback riding, from the back of a Harley Davidson, spent the night in a traditional Hogan and admired centuries-old Navajo dance performances. What I enjoyed the most was hiking among the Mittens. Taking in the scenery one step at a time, these instants of solitude were amazing and engrained in my mind forever. A timeless experience, I would gladly walk the same path over again and relive the spiritual moments.
How many of these sites have you seen? Did you see your favorite on here? If not, what’s your favorite?
I have to say a massive THANK YOU to all of the contributors! See something you like? Simply click their site name in this post and you’ll be taken to their blog and on their adventures – be sure to check them out!