Ahu Tongariki is the largest ahu on Easter Island. Its moai were toppled during the island’s civil wars and in the twentieth century the ahu was swept inland by a tsunami. It has since been restored and has fifteen moai including an 86 tonne moai that was the heaviest ever erected on the island. All the moai here face sunset during Summer Solstice.
Angkor Wat was first a Hindu, then subsequently a Buddhist, temple complex in Cambodia and the largest religious monument in the world. The temple was built by the Khmer King Suryavarman II in the early 12th century in Yaśodharapura, the capital of the Khmer Empire, as his state temple and eventual mausoleum. It has become a symbol of Cambodia, appearing on its national flag, and it is the country’s prime attraction for visitors.
Antelope Canyon is a slot canyon in the American Southwest. Antelope Canyon includes two separate, photogenic slot canyon sections, referred to individually as Upper Antelope Canyon or The Crack; and Lower Antelope Canyon or The Corkscrew. Antelope Canyon was formed by erosion of Navajo Sandstone, primarily due to flash flooding and secondarily due to other sub-aerial processes. Rainwater, especially during monsoon season, runs into the extensive basin above the slot canyon sections, picking up speed and sand as it rushes into the narrow passageways. Over time the passageways eroded away, making the corridors deeper and smoothing hard edges in such a way as to form characteristic ‘flowing’ shapes in the rock.
The Avenue or Alley of the Baobabs is a prominent group of baobabtrees lining the dirt road between Morondava and Belon’i Tsiribihina in theMenabe region in western Madagascar. Its striking landscape draws travelers from around the world, making it one of the most visited locations in the region. Along the Avenue in some 260 m long segment are remaining some 20 – 25 trees about 30 meters in height, of the species Adansonia grandidieri,endemic to Madagascar. The area is not a national park, and the trees are threatened by further deforestation, effluent from encroaching rice paddiesand sugarcane plantations, and bush and forest fires. Despite its popularity as a tourist destination, the area has no visitor center or gate fees, and local residents receive little income from tourism.
Iguazu Falls are waterfalls of the Iguazu River on the border of the Argentina province of Misiones and the Brazilian state of Paraná. The falls divide the river into the upper and lower Iguazu. The Iguazu River rises near the city of Curitiba. For most of its course, the river flows through Brazil, however, most of the falls are on the Argentine side.Numerous islands along the 2.7-kilometre-long edge divide the falls into many separate waterfalls and cataracts, varying between 60 to 82 metres high. The number of these smaller waterfalls fluctuates from 150 to 300, depending on the water level.
Hill Inlet in the Whitsundays is a stunning inlet located at the northern end of Whitehaven Beach on Whitsunday Island, the largest of the 74 islands in the Whitsundays. As the tide shifts, the white sand and blue hues of the inlet blend seamlessly to create a breathtaking mosaic. Hill Inlet is best viewed from the lookout at Tongue Point on Whitsunday Island. Most people moor their boats in Tongue Bay, take a dingy ashore and make the short uphill walk to the lookout for breathtaking views.
This has to be one of Fukuoka’s best-kept secrets. Over 150 wisteria at Kawachi Fujien come into bloom from the end of April through to early May. It is a truly breathtaking sight, with tunnels, domes and a large wooden trellis draped in flowers. Tucked away in the mountains of Kitakyushu, the garden doesn’t receive many foreign visitors, but it’s definitely worth making the journey if you have the opportunity.
Kyaiktiyo Pagoda also known as Golden Rock) is a well-known Buddhist pilgrimage site in Mon State, Myanmar. It is a small pagoda 7.3 metres built on the top of a granite boulder covered with gold leaves pasted on by devotees. According to legend, the Golden Rock itself is precariously perched on a strand of the Buddha‘s hair. The balancing rock seems to defy gravity, as it perpetually appears to be on the verge of rolling down the hill. The rock and the pagoda are at the top of Mt. Kyaiktiyo.
Kelimutu is a volcano, close to the small town of Moni in central Flores island in Indonesia. The volcano contains three striking summit crater lakes of varying colors. Tiwu Ata Bupu (Lake of Old People) is usually blue and is the westernmost of the three lakes. The other two lakes, Tiwu Ko’o Fai Nuwa Muri (Lake of Young Men and Maidens) and Tiwu Ata Polo (Bewitched or Enchanted Lake) are separated by a shared crater wall and are typically green or red respectively.
The Perito Moreno Glacier is a glacier located in the Los Glaciares National Park in southwest Santa Cruz province, Argentina. It is one of the most important tourist attractions in the Argentine Patagonia.
Due to its size and accessibility, Perito Moreno is one of the major tourist attractions in southern Patagonia. It is less than two hours by bus from El Calafate, and many tour companies run daily visits. A large visitor centre at the site features a walking circuit which allows visitors to view the southern flank and the east facing edge of the glacier.
In recent years, trekking tours on the ice have gained popularity. The two standard tours are a “mini-trekking” option, consisting of a short walk of about an hour and a half, and a “big ice” version, which is usually about five hours. Tour companies generally provide crampons to customers.
Wadi Musa is the name of a town located in the Ma’an Governorate in southern Jordan east of Petra. It is the nearest town to the archaeological site of Petra and hosts many hotels and restaurants for tourists visiting this place. Approximately 2 kilometers from the main town, there is an important Bedouin settlement. Wadi Musa means ‘Valley of Moses’ in Arabic. It is said that the prophetMoses passed through the valley and struck water from the rock for his followers at the site of Ain Musa.
The Phi Phi Islands are located inThailand, between the large island of Phuket and the western Strait of Malacca coast of the mainland. Ko Phi Phi Don is the largest island of the group, and is the most populated island of the group, although the beaches of the second largest island, Ko Phi Phi Lee, are visited by many people as well. Ko Phi Phi was devastated by the Indian Ocean Tsunami of December 2004, when nearly all of the island’s infrastructure was destroyed. As of 2010 most, but not all, of this has been restored. The islands feature beaches and clear water that have had their natural beauty protected by National Park status. Tourism on Ko Phi Phi, like the rest of Krabi province, has exploded since the filming of the movie “The Beach”. In the early 1990s, only the most adventurous travelers visited the island, staying in only the most basic accommodation. Nowadays, however, the place has turned into one of the major destinations for visitors to Krabi and Phuket. However, it is still significantly less developed than the nearby island of Phuket, or Ko Samui, on Thailand’s opposite coast.
The Reed Flute Cave is a landmark and tourist attraction in Guilin, Guangxi,China. It is a natural limestone cave with multicolored lighting and has been one of Guilin’s most interesting attractions for over 1200 years. It is over 180 million years old. The cave got its name from the type of reed growing outside, which can be made into melodious flutes.
Trolltunga is a piece of rock jutting horizontally out of a mountain about 700 metres above the north side of the lake Ringedalsvatnet in the municipality of Odda in Hordaland county,Norway. The name translated to English is The Troll’s tongue. The cliff is part of the precambrian bedrock and was formed during the ice age, approximately 10,000 years ago, when the edges of the glacierreached the cliff. The Troll Tongue is available for hikers from approximately mid-June to mid-September.
The Grand Canal is Venice’s most famous feature, snaking through the town lined with historic palazzi. There are no roads or paths along its length, just scattered viewpoints from landing stages or brief stretches of pavement. If you want to sit and gaze at the Grand Canal, the most stylish way to do this is from your own balcony.
The Zhangjiajie National Forest is a unique national forest park located inZhangjiajie City in northern Hunan Province in the People’s Republic of China. In 1982 it was recognized as China’s first national forest park with an area of 11,900 acres. The most notable geographic features of the park are the pillar-like formations that are seen throughout the park. They are the result of many years of erosion. The weather is moist year round, and as a result, the foliage is very dense. Much of the erosion which forms these pillars are the result of expanding ice in the winter and the plants which grow on them. These formations are a distinct hallmark of Chinese landscape, and can be found in many ancient Chinese paintings.
Riomaggiore is a village and comune in the province of La Spezia, situated in a small valley in the Liguriaregion of Italy. It is the first of the Cinque Terre one meets when travelling north from La Spezia. The village, dating from the early thirteenth century, is known for its historic character and its wine, produced by the town’s vineyards.