From sand dunes to jungles, these far-flung wonders will take your breath away
20. Jeju Island,
These electrifying yellow fields on a Korean island are stunning. Home to an inactive volcano, the landscape’s a beautiful contrast, from lush flowers to massive rock formations.
19. Maranhenses National Park,
Maranhenses Park is a stretch of protected dunes and swollen lagoons. Incredibly, the area gets massive rainfall, but has no plant life, letting the sand and water intermix.
18. Burning Man Festival,
Black Rock Desert, Nevada
Burning Man is renowned for its bohemian spirit and majestic views. Adding to the magic is that it’s accessible only once a year before it evaporates, leaving only the pristine desert behind.
17. Couverville Island,
Couverville might look deserted, but the chilly island is a closely-watched home for Gentoo penguins. To the penguins, those icy cliffs are the best waterslide.
16. Amazon Rainforest,
A timeless destination, the Amazon Rainforest is a home to exotic animals, lush vegetation, and rich culture. Plus, it’s just plain pretty.
15. Mont Saint Michel Abbey and Salt Marshes,
Mont Saint Michel is a mix of manmade and natural wonder. It’s a vast historic abbey surrounded by expansive salt marshes, where prized sheep graze on salty grasses.
14. Ngong Ping,
Lantau Island, Hong Kong
Ngong Ping represents serenity and nature hand in hand. Hidden in the area is a monastery, floating butterflies, and profound tranquility rounded off with lofty views.
13. Montreal Biosphere,
A modern marvel, the biosphere is dedicated to environmental studies and climate change. Beautifully designed and made to do good, it is a remarkable combination.
12. Daigoji Temple,
Surrounded by cherry blossoms and with a tea house, Daigoji Temple has a little bit of everything, and the calm setting to enjoy it all in.
11. Skeleton Coast,
Eerily silent, the Skeleton Coast got its name from deserted whale bones and the skeletal shipwrecks that once littered the shores. It’s bleak, but beautiful.
10. Machu Picchu,
Perched high above sea level, Machu Picchu was the stuff of myth until it was rediscovered in 1911. It’s one of the most gorgeous hidden cities, with amazing stonework and endless views stretching to the sky.
9. Agua Azul Waterfalls,
Thanks to a high mineral content, the Agua Azul waters leave behind limestone, and look brilliantly blue as they rush over the rocks.
8. Castle Geyser,
Set against the natural beauty of Yellowstone, even the Castle Geyser stands out. Named in part for the rock formation around its base that resembles a castle, it’s a spurting show-stopper.
7. Grand Canyon,
One of the classic sights, the Grand Canyon’s towering orange rocks look over winding pools. No matter how tall you are, it’ll make you feel small.
6. Dover Castle,
Dover Castle’s an enduring wonder. Even cooler, there’s a lighthouse dating from Roman times on the ground, so it’s a truly momentous historic link.
5. Kinderdijk Windmills,
Revealing how skillfully man and nature intersect, the Kinderdijk windmills glide smoothly against the soothing Netherlands.
The rolling hills of Sataniv are gorgeously green. They also represent generations of caring, as nearby residents tend carefully to the area’s pristine fields.
3. Scott’s Hut,
Showing nature’s frozen power, Antarctica is challenging even for the few species that manage to live there. Still, it’s tough to beat the expanses of powdery snow and biting frost.
2. Birdoswald Roman Fort,
Nestling neatly into the landscape, the Birdoswald Fort was once a great monument, and has now receded into history. But set against the fog and trees, it remains a glorious site.
1. Bryce Canyon National Park,
One of the tightest rocky squeezes in the country, Bryce Canyon is a twisting, tricky ride. Called one of the most beautiful places in the world, this breathtaking view alone is worth the jumpy horseback ride.