The 7 Natural Wonders of the World
By Janet Benoir – October 18, 2023
Our planet is home to awe-inspiring natural wonders, many of which are scarcely experienced by most people. Among these amazing marvels, there are seven that stand out from the rest: the Northern Lights, the Grand Canyon, Paricutin, Mount Everest, Harbor of Rio de Janeiro, Victoria Falls, and the Great Barrier Reef. These are considered the 7 natural wonders of the world, each providing majestic views and memorable experiences to those fortunate enough to witness them.
You may find yourself drawn to the beauty of nature, whether you’re an intrepid explorer, a thrill-seeker, or a tourist seeking unique experiences. If that’s the case, be sure to add these 7 natural wonders to your travel bucket list. Visiting these extraordinary destinations, you’ll be able to appreciate their vastness and splendor, sometimes best captured from an aerial perspective. Discover the magic of our Earth and the gift of natural wonder that awaits you.
Mount Everest holds the title for the highest point on Earth, approximately 29,029 feet above sea level. However, it is not the tallest mountain; Mauna Kea in Hawaii claims that honor. Everest is located within the Himalayan mountain range, straddling the border between Nepal and Tibet, China.
You can experience Mount Everest in multiple ways without actually climbing it. For an incredible aerial view, book a flight around the mountain. If you’re a daring trekker, hike to the Everest base camp for a breathtaking immersive landscape. Alternatively, a lodge at a hill station in Nepal offers a cozy, picturesque view of the soaring peak.
Harbor of Rio de Janeiro
The Harbor of Rio de Janeiro is nestled among granite mountains and peaks coated in lush greenery. As you explore the area, you’ll come across famous landmarks such as Sugarloaf Mountain, Corcovado Peak, and the Tijuca hills.
To fully immerse yourself in the awe-inspiring beauty of the harbor, travel on the rack railway up to Tijuca National Park. This journey brings you to the uppermost region, where the statue of Christ the Redeemer towers over one of the granite peaks, casting its gaze upon the harbor. From the viewing platforms, relish the stunning vistas of the picturesque beaches below and the grand mountains in the distance.
Paricutin, located in Michoacán, Mexico, is a unique cinder cone volcano that has gained recognition as one of the 7 natural wonders of the world. Its last eruption occurred in 1952, and it stands out due to the fact that humans could observe its formation and rapid growth firsthand. If you’re seeking adventure, you can embark on a twelve-mile round-trip journey to the peak of the volcano, choosing between hiking and horseback riding.
Visiting Paricutin is possible at any time throughout the year. The volcano is situated about a seven-hour drive away from Mexico City, so you can easily combine your trip with a visit to the bustling capital for a blend of nature and culture. When it comes to accommodation, you’ll find plenty of options in the nearby city of Urapan.
Great Barrier Reef
The Great Barrier Reef, the world’s largest coral reef, spans over 900 islands and approximately 3,000 individual reefs, creating a vast and diverse ecosystem. Stretching for around 2,300 kilometers, it extends across a significant part of the ocean, with many sections located far off the coast.
You can explore the remarkable beauty of the Great Barrier Reef through various boat trips and excursions. Snorkeling or diving trips give you the opportunity to witness vibrant fish, coral, and marine life. Choose from day trips or multi-day experiences, and consider starting points like Cairns, Port Douglas, or the Whitsunday Islands to best appreciate the wonders of this Australian gem, particularly during Queensland’s rainy season.
Victoria Falls is a stunning waterfall situated along the borders of Zambia and Zimbabwe in Africa, where the mighty Zambezi River cascades over the landscape. To fully appreciate this natural wonder, you can access it from both Victoria Falls town in Zimbabwe and Livingstone in Zambia, offering differing vantage points.
The falls are at their most spectacular right after the rainy season, which typically spans from late November to early April. This is the perfect opportunity to visit, as the flow of water is abundant and the weather conditions are agreeable. Getting to Victoria Falls is straightforward, with air travel options available to enter either Zambia or Zimbabwe. Landing at Harry Mwanga Nkumbula International Airport (LVI) in Zambia is often the preferred choice as it’s closer to the destination.
The Northern Lights: Aurora Borealis
Witnessing the mesmerizing display of the Northern Lights, or Aurora Borealis, is an awe-inspiring experience for those venturing to the Northern Hemisphere. These fascinating light shows paint the sky with a captivating glow, and their intensity increases closer to the Arctic’s magnetic pole. However, their random appearance makes them an elusive sight for short-term visitors, primarily appreciated by locals residing in the far north.
To maximize your chances of seeing the Aurora Borealis, plan a trip to the northernmost regions of the Northern Hemisphere, including Canada’s far north, Alaska, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, and Finland. The probability of experiencing this enigmatic spectacle increases during the winter months due to the prevalence of dark skies. Embrace the thrill of chasing the Northern Lights and consider these remarkable destinations for a truly unforgettable adventure.
The Grand Canyon
The Grand Canyon, a natural wonder in Arizona, USA, presents a vast and colorful landscape with unparalleled views. As you stand on the rim overlooking the magnificent vista, it’s apparent why this unique site is renowned worldwide. The Colorado River runs through the Grand Canyon National Park, carving an immense gorge and exposing remarkable sediment layers over time.
Most visitors tend to explore the South Rim, where numerous overlooks offer stunning perspectives of the canyon’s expanse. For the adventurous, consider delving deeper into the canyon on one of the many hiking trails. However, if you prefer a less strenuous experience, a helicopter tour provides an unforgettable bird’s-eye view. You can also visit the Geological Museum. From Lipan Point on Desert View Drive, you’ll have an excellent opportunity to observe the striking rock layers in the canyon wall.