The world is filled with incredible and extraordinary places, and many of them become favorites among those who know them. The following is a list of 15 of these wonderful places that are either very tourist-filled or not, and are certainly worth a visit.
The Blue City of Chefchaouen, Morocco
Chefchaouen, the Blue City of Morocco, despite not having access to the sea, resembles an endless blue ocean, hidden at the foot of the Rife mountains. The town was founded in 1471, when Chefchaouen functioned as a Moorish fortress for Spanish escapes. Over time, the city received Jews and Christians living with the Berbers. When you are in the middle of this blue oasis, the sense of design will catch your eye.
But the reason for painting the houses in shades of blue was of a religious order. Jewish teachings say that blue reminds us of the power of God, a belief that is still present today. There was also a rumor that the blue color scared the mosquitoes! The intensity of the blue buildings is punctuated by the various shops with display cases of quilts, carpets and handmade lamps. And nothing better than getting lost in the maze of the city’s cobblestone streets.
The salt desert of the Salar de Uyuni, Bolívia
An almost infinite salt desert that becomes one of the largest mirrors in the world when covered with water. Does it seem surreal? But it exists! Covering an area similar to the size of the Bahamas, the Salar de Uyuni was created when the prehistoric Lake Minchín dried up, leaving puddles and salt flats. More salt deposits came from the surrounding mountains, as there was no outlet to the sea.
So, the Salar de Uyuni comes to this day as one of the most incredible travel experiences of your life: imagine a flat landscape of salt, shining salt, with the appearance of cracked mud, and punctuated by small islands that make the view even more surreal During the rainy season (December to April), a thin layer of water turns the salt flats into an immense lake that reflects the sky so perfectly that you can see on the horizon where the sky meets the Earth.
Rice fields of Sapa, Vietnam
Slopes with rice paddies, dense bamboo forests, and mountains in the clouds make Sapa one of Vietnam’s most amazing tourist attractions. Long ago, this area consisted of numerous slopes with very fertile soil. The villagers then began gradually to modify the terrain (creating the notorious steps) and cultivate rice.
The common technique in mountainous areas reduces erosion and is quite efficient in harvests that require irrigation. Not to mention the spectacular visuals that the staggered fields produce. Colors change all seasons. Between June and July, the rice fields reach the apex, and a variety of shades of green can be seen; already between September and October, the fields show beautiful shades of gold in contrast with the green of the slopes.
St. Basil’s Cathedral, Moscow, Russia
One of the most famous and symbolic buildings in Russia, St. Basil’s Cathedral looks like a movie theater, and is the main attraction of Moscow’s Red Square. Officially known as the Cathedral of the Intercession of the Holy Virgin in the Pit, it was later named after Basil the “Fool for Christ”.
Its construction was ordered by the first Tsar of Russia, Ivan the Terrible, in 1554, in homage to a military conquest. It was originally just blank to match the white stones of the Kremin, and with the golden domes. The colors were then added in the 17th century, inspired by biblical descriptions of the Kingdom of Heaven.
St. Basil is composed of eight chapels around a central ninth, with the four interiors rising above the others. There are several unproven theories about the cathedral’s architectural layout – one says that the structure represents the medieval symbol of the eight-pointed star. Today, it is no longer a church, but a museum.
Twelve Apostles, Australia
Cross the beautiful Great Ocean Road from Melbourne and, after a four-hour drive, arrive in one of Australia’s most famous landscapes: the Twelve Apostles, the rock formations that spring from the Southern Ocean. The apostles arose thanks to a long and constant process of erosion of limestone cliffs: the wild Southern Ocean (or Antarctic) and strong winds twisted the limestone, leaving caves in the cliffs.
These rocks became arches that, when they fell, gave rise to the piles of isolated stones up to 45 meters high. The name may be a bit strange, since there were never actually 12 piles of stones, but 9 (there is no real explanation for the name, except for the local nickname which has now been adopted as official). Until 2005, only eight of the stones remained there, as erosion continues to affect them. Visit the place at dusk or at dawn, when the apostles change color, going from dark and gloomy to bright and bright.
We are sure that you have seen the photos, but none can live up to Cappadocia. Just an hour away from the great Anatolian town of Kayseri, this ancient kingdom has existed somehow for more than 3,500 years, and today its incomparable troglodyte dwellings and phallic-shaped volcanic stones (formerly known as “Fairy Chimneys”) leave millions of stunned visitors every year.
The best way to find them is by going through the sky. All for about 200 euros a flight, these hot air balloon rides can seem like an expensive tourist trap. However, the journey lasts an extended 95 minutes, and once you are above a UNESCO World Heritage site, you will realize that it is a small price to pay to experience one of the unquestionable wonders of the world.
Extra tip: Get rid of the crowd and see Cappadocia in its magnificence when arriving just before sunrise.
Blue Lagoon + Aurora Borealis, Iceland
When we mention Iceland, you mention Blue Lake. Yes, this stunning geothermal spa is synonymous with a Nordic country, and such prestige means it has become increasingly commercial and crowded over the years with the basic entry fee of 45 euros to marvel at it. And yet we find that this amazing attraction – just 50 minutes away from the center of Reykjavik – should not be forgotten at all!
Being close to a lava field and surrounding geological conditions, the 39 ° C waters of the Lagoon are rich in minerals such as sulfur and silica, relying on both relaxing and rejuvenating swimming. If you are taking a swim during the fall or winter Icelandic, be sure to look up to enjoy another of the wonders of the world, the great Aurora Boreal dancing over the night sky. Extra tip: Book in advance! Visit the Blue Lagoon website to buy your tickets and make sure not to miss the opportunity.
Petra is known by the Middle East as the pink jewel of Jordan, but for most of the Western public, it is probably better known for its popular culture, such as its roles of stardom in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade and Transformers 2. While it may be the films that attract people to the UNESCO World Heritage Site, its irresistible beauty and preservation of the ancient city that really gives the Petra the main factor.
Built about 300 years before the Common Era by the Nabataeans with meticulously intricate detail, the archaeological site includes tombs, stables and an amphitheater, all carved from sandstone cliffs. See yourself walking and getting lost during the day, then return to the central temple Al Khazneh, ‘The Treasury’ at dusk and marvel at it glowing a rich red and gold under the candlelight.