Double rainbows are among the most colorful natural phenomenons. In a black and white world, these 12 natural sites burst through with spectacular color.
The Erta Ale in the Afar Region of northeastern Ethiopia is a badlands desert area spanning the border with Eritrea. As one of the hottest and driest places on earth, the air around the volcano reaches 188 degrees, making its nickname “The Gateway to Hell” both scary and appropriate.
The Grand Canyon in Arizona is a mile deep and spans 277 miles long. Nearly two billion years of Earth’s geological history has been exposed by the Colorado river’s cut channels through the layers of rock. While its exact age is debated, it’s said to be at least 17 million years old. Maybe they should rename it the “Grandpa Canyon.”
The trees in Yoyogi Park in Tokyo, Japan aren’t that out of the ordinary, until Autumn. The leaves take on a beautiful magnolia color and cover the park in bright yellow leaves. It looks almost as if a yellow confetti canon exploded onto one of Tokyo’s most popular parks.
The Amazon Rainforest covers much of South America, with the majority in Brazil. It covers almost three million sq. miles and contains an estimated 390 billion individual trees. This is where we should thank our fucking stars that trees are inanimate.
Peyto Lake in Banff National Park in the Canadian Rockies isn’t actual made from blue fairy tears. During the summer, glacial rock flour flow into the lake. These suspended rock particles give the lake this amazing turquoise color.
The Great Blue Hole off the coast of Belize is the largest submarine sinkhole in the world. Formed from several episodes of quaternary glaciation when sea levels were much lower, the sinkhole is more than 400 ft. deep. If the Erta Ale is the gateway to hell, then what’s this?
The Wisteria Tunnel in Katakyushu, Japan is a pastel-colored love tunnel. Calling its home the Kawachi Fuji Gardens, the tunnel features 150 Wisteria Flower plants that range in color from white to purple. I am pretty sure that this is where Cupid calls home when it’s not Valentine’s Day.
The Hutt Lagoon near Port Gregory, Washington isn’t always pink, but it changes as a result of high concentrations of brine prawn. During the year, once it reaches a salinity level greater than that of sea water, the alga in the lake begins to accumulate a red pigment. Voilà, pink!
Pammukkale in Denizli Province in southwestern Turkey is famous for its hot springs and travertines, terraces of carbonate materials left by flowing water. With its translation meaning “Cotton Castle,” people are not allowed to wear shoes in the water as to not disturb the natural site. Though I guess you don’t really need shoes when you’re walking on a cloud.
Punalu’u Beach between Pāhala and Nā’ālehu on the Big Island of Hawaii is a naturally-formed black sand beach. Lava flows into the ocean, where it explodes upon the intense, immediate cooling, causing basalt, which turns the sand a rich black color.
The Death Valley Salt Flats in the Mojave Desert is a densely packed salt pan. This particular one doubles as a racetrack and features five major land speed events throughout the year. I would hate to be left a speeding car’s dust/salt.
The Aurora Borealis is my personal favorite natural phenomena. It’s so beautiful that it’s hard to imagine that it’s a natural light display caused by solar wind and magnetospheric charged particles. Auroras can be seen throughout the sky, particularly in the high latitude regions and even from space. Prettier than any famous painting, auroras are the world’s most beautiful phenomenon. Step aside rainbows, step aside.