There are countless breathtaking places worldwide, shaped by nature and human hands. Many of these are acknowledged by experts, and some even make it to the UNESCO World Heritage List. Were you wondering about the top 10 must-visit destinations? Resources like The Collector, Planet of Hotels, Travel Guide, and Fjordnorway have highlighted some of the most stunning spots. These include Hitachi Park, the Grand Canyon, the ancient city of Petra, the Taj Mahal, Pamukkale, Bora Bora, the towering Tianzi Mountains, Geirangerfjord, Victoria Falls, and the Great Barrier Reef.
Hitachi Seaside Park (Japan)
Hitachi Seaside Park, located on the Pacific coast of Japan, offers a unique display of nature’s colors that shift with the seasons. As highlighted by Planet of Hotels, in May, the rolling hills are blanketed with the blue of nemophila flowers, also known as “American blue eyes.” Vibrant red poppies bloom by June, and the green kochia plants burst forth by July. More than just a haven of natural beauty, Hitachi Park is a space where visitors can unwind and rejuvenate. Additionally, the park features the Pleasure Garden amusement area, expansive grazing lands, and a forest playground.
Grand Canyon (USA)
The Grand Canyon in Arizona stands as one of the world’s deepest canyons and is renowned for its stunning beauty. As the U.S. National Park Service notes, this majestic landmark stretches over 278 miles (447 km) along the Colorado River and is the ancestral home to 11 native tribes. The South Rim is the most frequented by tourists, housing various observation decks and attractions. In contrast, with its more challenging trails, the North Rim must be developed for visitors. Additionally, the North Rim closes during winter months, limiting accessibility.
Petra City (Jordan)
What’s the most extraordinary place on Earth? Many consider Petra to be among the most remarkable and beautiful cities. This ancient city, situated in modern-day Jordan, was carved into the cliffs over two thousand years ago by the nomadic Nabatean tribe. They transformed Petra into a central hub at the crossroads of significant trade routes between the Red Sea and the Mediterranean. Alongside India’s Taj Mahal, Petra is recognized as one of the World’s Seven Wonders. The ancient rock-carved structures in Petra, Jordan, have stood the test of time. The Crusaders were the last to occupy Petra before it was lost to the sands of time, only to be rediscovered in 1812 by Swiss explorer Johann Ludwig Burckhardt. According to The Collector, Petra is also called the “Rose City” due to the characteristic hue of its cliffs.
Taj Mahal (India)
The Taj Mahal stands as a symbol of both love and sorrow. The Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan constructed this white marble mausoleum in memory of his beloved wife, Mumtaz Mahal. According to legend, they shared 17 blissful years, but tragedy struck when Mumtaz passed away during the birth of their fourteenth child. Devastated by her loss, Jahan never found happiness again. In her memory, he commissioned the construction of the world’s most beautiful mausoleum, unparalleled in splendor. The Taj Mahal is among the most magnificent examples of Indian architecture. In 1983, UNESCO declared it a World Heritage Site, praising it as a gem of Muslim art in India.
Pamukkale is a complex of 17 thermal springs located in southwestern Turkey. The water in these springs is rich in calcium, forming cascading natural terraces made of pristine white limestone over the centuries. Locals refer to Pamukkale as the “cotton castle.” The Turkish Ministry of Culture and Tourism states that Pamukkale is also the site of the ancient city of Hierapolis. Visitors can explore the ruins of ancient temples, baths, and other Hellenistic landmarks. In 1988 the springs and the ancient city were added to the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Bora Bora (French Polynesia)
Bora Bora is a volcanic island located about 230 km northwest of Tahiti. Where is the world’s most beautiful nature? Travel Guide ranks Bora Bora as the most stunning island globally, noting the distinct beauty of the Mount Otemanu and Pahia peaks that tower over it. The island boasts scenic landscapes and exotic flora. Bora Bora is encircled by coral reefs and a “necklace” of motus (islets), while both small and expansive white sandy beaches line the shores of a lagoon with a strikingly vibrant blue hue.
Soaring Tianzi Mountains (China)
The peaks of the Tianzi Mountains often rise dramatically from the tree-covered land below, frequently enveloped in mist. Renowned director James Cameron drew inspiration from this landscape when creating the alien vistas of Pandora for “Avatar” (2009). This natural wonder is in the Wulingyuan district of Hunan Province, China. The Tianzi Mountains are unique formations resulting from the erosion of sedimentary rock over millions of years. Wind and water have slowly carved out slender towers adorned with vegetation. Some of these peaks reach heights of up to 1,200 meters.
Often referred to as the jewel among Norwegian fjords, Geirangerfjord is accessible via the famous Troll Road. The region is renowned for its breathtaking waterfalls and abandoned fjord farms on cliffs. Notable among these are farms like Skageflå, Knivsflå, Blomberg, Matvik, Syltevik, and Westerås. Recognizing its beauty, UNESCO has listed Geirangerfjord as a World Heritage Site. According to the Fjordnorway resource, its depth reaches 260 meters, while the mountains surrounding it stand tall at up to 1,700 meters. Here, visitors are greeted by spectacular nature and picturesque mountains.
Victoria Falls (South Africa)
Named in honor of Queen Victoria by the Scottish explorer David Livingstone during his visit in 1855, Victoria Falls stands as the only waterfall in the world that measures over 100 meters in height and spans more than a kilometer in width. The falls are situated on the border between Zimbabwe and Zambia. Locals in Zambia refer to it as Mosi-oa-Tunya, translating to ‘the smoke that thunders.’
Before 1905, the falls were scarcely visited by people. However, the dynamics changed when a railway bridge was constructed across the Zambezi River towards Bulawayo. The number of tourists dwindled in the mid-20th century due to events related to guerrilla warfare in Zimbabwe, but by the 1980s, the flow of visitors to the falls saw a resurgence.
Great Barrier Reef (Australia)
The Great Barrier Reef is a marvel of nature. Its vastness is such that the reef can be seen from space. This stretch of coral reefs and the islands they form extends along the northeastern coast of Australia. Many of the reefs remain submerged and only become visible at the water’s surface during low tides.
The Great Barrier Reef attracts a multitude of diving enthusiasts. Its ecosystem is renowned for its diverse corals and its rich underwater world teeming with various marine inhabitants. Thanks to its well-established infrastructure, millions of tourists visit one of our planet’s most beautiful places annually. The reef’s splendor can be observed from unique viewing platforms during aquatic, helicopter, or walking tours.