When you look at these pictures, you might think they were photoshopped by a special effects team or graphic designer. They look like the kinds of places that could only exist in fantasy, but, amazingly, they are right here on Earth. If you ever thought our planet was boring, check out these unbelievable sights.
1. Lake Hillier, "The Pink Lake," Western Australia
This lake is famous for its bright pink color, but scientists are still trying to determine what causes it. The leading theory is bacteria, but the waters are safe for swimming.
2. Rainbow Mountains, Gansu Province, China
These mountains are located in the Zhangye Danxia Geological Park, and feature multicolored strips of sandstone. Over the last 24 million years, sandstone collected as erosion formed the mountains into peaks, resulting in this unique and colorful display.
The tundra of Antarctica is one of the last places on Earth not populated with humans, a void that makes spectacular views like this possible.
4. Three Sisters Volcano, Oregon, USA
Located in the Cascade Range, this volcano gets its nickname from its three peaks. From North to South the “sisters” are named Faith, Hope, and Charity.
5. Apostle Islands, Wisconsin, USA
Shoreline sea caves can be found on the Apostle Islands in Lake Superior. In cold months, icicles create a dazzling display on the cave’s ceilings.
6. Mendenhall Glacier, Alaska, USA
The Mendenhall Glacier is over 12 miles long, but is slowly shrinking due to global warming.
7. Goðafoss, Iceland
This volcano is called “Gothafoss,” a name that means “waterfall of the gods.” At 12 meters high and over 30 meters across, it stands at truly epic proportions.
8. The Devil's Punchbowl, Central Oregon, USA
These caves are located along the central Oregon coastline. The bowl formation was caused in a collapse, while the deep grooves were formed long ago by the sea. The site is known for its pure white sands and purple seaweed.
9. Abraham Lake, Alberta, Canada
Abraham Lake is man-made, and was created by the construction of Bighorn Dam. Gas bubbles remain frozen in the ice, creating an interesting optical illusion.
10. Valley of Fire, Nevada, USA
The sandstone formations in Valley of Fire State Park were created as desert sands shifted over millions of years, leaving behind this rainbow of pastels.
11. Spotted Lake, Osoyoos, British Columbia, Canada
This unusual lake displays a spotted look in summer months, due to various mineral deposits. The colors change due to changes in mineral and water levels. Traditionally, the site was revered for healing properties.
12. Lake Baikal, Siberia, Russia
Lake Baikal displays amazing blue ice, which is solid enough to support individuals and snowmobiles. The area is also rich in biodiversity.
13. The Wave in Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Arizona, USA
No trail leads to this famous rock formation, but it’s a sight worth seeing if you can find your way there. Here sandstone has been eroded, revealing bands of colors.
14. Fly Geyser, Nevada, USA
In 1964, this small geothermal geyser was created while well drilling. The water spouts can reach as high as five feet, constantly shooting out water rich in dissolved minerals which form the mounds below.
15. Alentejo Beach, Portugal
This area might look barren, but it is one of the richest and most diverse sites of flora and fauna in the country.
If these pictures don’t make you want to start exploring our world, nothing will. Pack your bags – who knows what amazing sights you will see.