While some other places make us drop our jaws with their beauty, these strange-looking islands are showing their features off mainly to make us doubt their . . . existence. You must check these places out.
Socotra Island (Indian Ocean)
Socotra Island, which is part of a group of four islands, is situated in the Indian Ocean and has been geographically isolated from mainland Africa for the last 6 or 7 million years. Despite its harsh, hot, and dry climate, the most amazing plant life thrives here, thanks to the long period of isolation. Seven hundred extremely rare species of flora and fauna (one third of them being endemic) can be found in the island.
Kliluk, The Spotted Lake (Canada)
During hot summer seasons, the water in the Spotted Lake evaporates and crystallizes minerals, forming many white-rimmed circles and shallow pools that reflect the mineral content of the water in shades of blue and green. It contains one of the highest concentrations of minerals (magnesium, Epsom salts, calcium and sodium sulphates, and other trace minerals).
Indians were said to get soaked their bodies in the lake to cure their aches and ailments with the healing mud and waters. Another story says that a truce in a battle between two warring tribes allowed their soldiers to tend to their wounds in the Spotted Lake.
Eisriesenwelt Ice Caves (Austria)
Ice caves are unlike any normal caves. Staying inside them can give you the creeps as you, making you feel like you are not from the same planet. The Eisriesenwelt Ice Caves in Austria are just one of the largest ice caves known to man. The caves, which are located within the Tennengebirge Mountains near Salzburg, stretch for 40 kilometers. Only a portion of the cave is accessible to tourists, but it’s enough to give you a taste of what’s beyond their depths.
Vale da Lua (Brazil)
Vale da Lua, or Moon Valley, is a group of water-eroded rocks and has natural swimming pools on a river in the Brazilian Cerrado forest. It is situated at Chapada, 38 km from Alto Paraíso de Goiás. The rock formations, which are one of the oldest in the planet, are made of quartz with outcrops of crystals.
The Stone Forest (China)
This stone forest is the best example of karst topography. The Shilin is made up of limestone and are formed by water percolating the ground’s surface and eroding away everything, save the pillars. It is the “first wonder of the world” since the Ming Dynasty.
The Richat Structure (Mauritania)
The Richat Structure is a stunning landform in Mauritania, in the southwestern part of the Sahara. It is huge, with a diameter of 30 miles, and is visible from space. Geologists believe that it is a product of uplift and erosion and not caused by a meteorite impact as it was originally believed to be. The cause of its circular shape remains to be a mystery until now.
Blood Pond Hot Spring (Japan)
You would rather not dip into this pond. Blood Pond Hot Spring is known to be one of the nine “hells” (jigoku) of Beppu, Japan, yet remains to be a breathtaking natural hot spring. This literally hellish pond consists of hot, red water caused by the iron in the liquid. Of the nine ponds, the Blood Pond is the most photographed.
Salar de Uyuni (Bolivia)
Salar de Uyuni in Bolivia is another picturesque landscape in the world that features the planet’s largest salt desert, active volcanoes, tallcacti islands, and geyser flats. The area is one bizarre yet magnificent mirage.
Rio Tinto (Spain)
This huge opencast mines of Rio Tinto create a surreal and almost lunar landscape. However, its growth not only consumed the nearby mountains and valleys but also entire villages, whose residents had to be resettled. Because of the river that flows through the region itself, Rio Tinto has become a landscape within a landscape. The river’s red water is highly acidic and is rich in heavy metals.
Dry Valleys (Antartica)
The Dry Valleys in Antarctica are the Earth’s Mars. Located within Victoria Land east of McMurdo Sound, the area hardly gets any snowfall and is the only continental part of Antarctica devoid of ice. The terrains looks unearthly, and under the ice is an extremely salty water where mysterious organisms are found.