From the Great Wall of China to Mount Everest, the world is full of wonders.
It seems there may never be a definitive list of wonders, one we can all agree on. Regardless, there are some pretty astounding wonders begging to be explored, courtesy of Mother Nature herself.
These are just a few worth adding to the list of must see natural wonders around the world. Which would you like to see?
The Great Barrier Reef
Australia’s Great Barrier Reef is truly a wonder of nature. The reef system is so large, it is one of the few natural wonders that can be seen from space.
Viewed from the air, the world’s largest coral reef leaves a lasting impression but up close from a boat or better, while diving or snorkelling is an experience not soon forgotten. The reefs teeming ecosystem presents an astonishing variety of life in all shapes, sizes and colours. You’ll be surprised at the beauty that lies just beneath the surface of the Coral Sea. Between May and October, the Great Barrier Reef becomes the calving grounds of the migratory humpback whales. Definitely a sight to see!
The Northern Lights
Winter in the Northern Hemisphere may bring with it long nights but it also brings a mysterious beauty. The magical celestial display of the Northern Lights. The Aurora Borealis, Nature’s most striking light show. The Northern Lights can be visible from many places across the northern latitudes. From Iceland and the Scandinavian countries to Canada, Russia and even the northern parts of Scotland. This is a wonder you absolutely must see at least once in your life!
The Dead Sea
At more than 400 metres below sea level, the shores of The Dead Sea between Israel and Jordan is the lowest body of land in the world. The deepest hypersaline lake in the world, the Dead Sea is the world’s saltiest bodies of water. Over 34% salinity, nearly 10 times that of the ocean means plants nor animals can survive. It is these harsh and austere conditions that attract millions of visitors each year as it has throughout history.
The density of water makes it possible to float on the surface with ease which is an experience quite unique to this type of environment. The Dead Sea has also attracted many throughout history for the therapeutic properties of the waters. From the time of Herod the Great, people have been harnessing the salt and minerals from the Dead Sea for a myriad of therapeutic and cosmetic uses. The Dead Sea may have been one of the world’s first health spas.
The Galapagos Islands
The Galapagos Islands, a volcanic archipelago in the Pacific Ocean is where Charles Darwin studied his theory of evolution. Considered one of the world’s leading destination for animal viewing, these volcanic islands boast a unique ecosystem and a collection of flora and fauna that can be seen nowhere else in the world.
There is nowhere better to observe the complex inter-relations between living beings and their natural surroundings. This delicate ecosystem is one of the few places left in the world where human impact has been kept to a minimum. A rare and privileged experience indeed.
Nominated as one of the world’s New 7 Natural Wonders, this famous Antipodean wonder attracts nearly half a million people each year. The atmospheric sandstone monolith dominates the landscape for hundreds of miles. Nothing will really prepare you for the enormity and grandeur of “The Rock” as this sacred site is affectionately known. The constantly changing colours and stillness and the overwhelming sense of size and space of this unique site will leave a long lasting impression. Uluru is one of those “must see’s that won’t disappoint.
The Grand Canyon
The Grand Canyon is a place of astounding natural beauty. They say no amount of photographs will prepare you for the sight of it in person. It is the sheer scale of the canyon that leaves an unforgettable impression. The canyon is up to eighteen miles wide, stretching over a length of more than 275 miles. In places, it has walls that are literally a mile high. This creates an intense play of light and shadow at sunrise and sunset that is a sight to behold.
There are many different trails catering to all fitness and experience levels, however, most visitors start from the South Rim area in Arizona. Follow one of the backpacker or horse riding trails along the top or head deep into the canyon itself. The terrain is challenging and the climate can be dangerous at any time of the year, so visitors are strongly advised to seek local advice and have backpacker insurance before setting out.
The Grand Canyon turns on a spectacular show no matter what time of year or trail you choose to hike. This is truly one of the world’s natural wonders.
The Victoria Falls
One of Africa’s most iconic sights is the spectacular Victoria Falls on the majestic Zambezi river. Because of the deafening roar of the water and the spray that rises above, it is known in the local language as Mosi-oa-Tunya which means “smoke that thunders”. Today, Victoria Falls is described as the greatest curtain of falling water in the world.
A sight of awe inspiring beauty, more than five hundred million cubic meters of water per minute creates a curtain of water nearly two km’s wide crashing into the gorge one hundred meters below. This is the sheer power and force of Mother Nature on full display.