Natural Wonders Of The World: – Planet Earth has been here since forever, and humans have explored pretty much every square inch of the land areas.
It is probably safe to say that we have seen all that the world could show, accepted everything the world will give, and taken anything the universe provided.
Some people have seen natural wonders of the world; even for those who have not, at least they’ve seen pictures or footages documenting the beauties.
Everybody knows the “7 Natural Wonders of the World”, but there are certainly more than just seven places or phenomenon worth mentioning. Here is the list of the established seven, added with three more.
Natural Wonders of The World
More familiarly known as the northern and southern lights (Borealis and Australis), these shimmering sheets of lights never cease to mesmerize the lucky witnessing eyes all over the world.
Of course, the night skies are always sprinkled with billions of blinking stars and occasional beams from comets or meteors. Still, the auroras are almost at a spiritual level of beauty.
Aurora occurs due to the interaction between particles in solar wind and Earth’s magnetic field. It starts humbly as a faint glow on the horizon, yet it gradually develops into drapery-like light that shows like nothing else.
If you think New Year’s Eve fireworks in London are right, the aurora is a million times better. While both the northern and southern auroras are lovely in their rights, only the former is considered a natural wonder.
2. Grand Canyon
A Spanish explorer named Garcia Lopez de Cardenas was first to see the Grand Canyon.
He was on a journey to seek the city of gold (present-day Arizona) when he saw the gaping rocky hole as far as his eyes could gaze.
In 1869, an American explorer called Major John Wesley Powell spent three hot long summer months travelling down the length of the canyon, and the area has been explored and wandered ever since.
In 1919, the federal government established the Grand Canyon, National Park. Colorado River and many of its tributaries have been flowing through the billion-year-old rock formation.
They etch their way through the rocks, leaving broad stripes and revealing records of the canyon’s geologic history.
For a geologist, the walls of Grand Canyon are like notebooks which tell them everything they need to know about the canyon’s age, formation, major, and minor events. Although the canyon is known as “Grand”, everybody now knows that it is an understatement.
Captain James Cook was the one who mapped and claimed most of the Pacific Ocean for the British Empire.
Unfortunately for him, the Great Barrier Reef was invisible from the surface that had to find the reef in the hardest way possible: by running aground on it.
Great Barrier Reef is on the list “7 Natural Wonders of the World” for fantastic reasons as well. It is the world’s longest spanning natural beauty at more than 1,200 miles.
It stretched along the northeast coast of Australia and made up of the skeletons of marine polyps.
Generation of coral polyps that lived and died underwater eventually created a reef which now also allows diverse organisms to thrive. Current generations of polyps along with numerous species of exotic marine plants find a home in the ridge.
When you hear the term harbours, the first thing that comes to your mind is a port followed by the idea that it must be a human-made object.
That is not the case with the Harbor of Rio de Janeiro. While humans indeed engineer the infrastructures, the area itself was created by one of the most significant forces of nature: erosion.
It is surrounded by beautiful mountains including the well-known Sugarloaf Mountain (1,296 feet), Corcovado Peak (2,310 feet), and the hills of Tijuca (2,310 feet). Right in front of the harbour, there are numerous islands to amplify its beauty.
In case you don’t remember, the peak of Corcovado is the place where Christ the Redeemer has been standing for more than 85 years now.
When India (then a separate continent) collided and became one with Asia, Himalayas were born. Among the many mountainous formations, one of them stands out from the crowd quite literally: Everest.
It is the tallest mountain on Earth standing at more than 29,000 feet. Many people have done successful climbs to the top, and more died trying. Everest is a wonder not only because of the height, but also its mystery and divinity.
It has always been mountaineers dream to reach the top of Everest. This is the top destination after spending years of practising and overcoming challenges in many other mountains all around the globe.
Everest is also the ultimate test of endurance, experience, and most important of them all, the willingness to survive. Because when you are standing on the top of Everest, you are standing at the top of the world.
It does not matter how you put it, and an eruption is one of nature’s most devastating forces.
Imagine the picture of hot ashes and rocks filling up the sky followed by the flow of warm melting volcanic materials, and then you get the idea of how enormous the power is. It is a demonstration of brute life-threatening force by nature.
An active volcano is a serious concern, but you may get a different perspective if you know how it forms, why it explodes, and what happens to it afterwards; this is why Paricutin Volcano is a natural wonder of the world.
Paricutin presented the first full documentation of the life cycle of a volcano for modern science.
During its relatively short nine years of development since the day it was formed to the eruption until the drop of its last speck of dirt, scientists made all the necessary documentation and compiled the data including sketches and photographs.
Paricutin has helped scientists to understand volcanic activity even better than ever, and now it sits quietly as a remembrance that sometimes it takes enormous explosions for humans to learn something.
Although Victoria Falls is neither the widest nor the tallest in the world, it still is the largest based on the area covered.
The combined width of more than 5,600 feet and height of 354 feet makes it the most massive sheet of water in one place.
To put it to perspective Victoria Falls is about twice the width of Horseshoe Falls and twice the height Niagara Falls. The indigenous Tonga name is Mosi-oa-Tunya, which translates to The Smoke that Thunders.
There has been the development of modern amenities and facilities around the area such as bridges, hotels, and trails. Still, the raw power of the water makes even advanced technologies into shame.
At 600 million years old, the Table Mountain remains a pristine and iconic landmark of Cape Town. One thing that makes the mountain unique is its flat top plateau that stretches to about 2 miles wide.
Every edge of the plateau comes to an end only by cliffs all around the top. Part of the Table Mountain National Park, it is one of the major attractions; you cannot say that you have visited Cape Town until you stand on the top of the mountain.
Lion’s Head flanks the plateau to the west and Devil’s Peak to the east. It does not matter where your exact position is at the top, and you can count on the unbelievable sight of Cape Town.
One of the best things is that you can reach the mountain either by cableway or travelling through the harder hiking path.
Seen from above, Ngorongoro Crater is like a piece of haven created by the nature of wildlife. It would bring out all the superlatives you can spell: mesmerizing, bewildering, breathtaking, astonishing, and so on.
When you finally come down and experience the feeling of just being in it, you run out of more superlatives to say.
Some of the highest concentrations of lions and other predators in Africa find a home in the crater; they live with large herbivores such as buffalos and hippopotamus too.
Ngorongoro Crater is a UNESCO World Heritage Site inhabited by more than 25,000 large animals including but not limited to blue wildebeest, Grant’s zebra, common eland, Grant’s gazelles, and Thomson’s gazelles.
Although the entire area looks like an enclosure, many animals migrate from and to the regions during different seasons. Buffalos and elands come during the rains, while wildebeest and zebras do the opposite.
With all the wildlife diversity (both flora and fauna), human’s existence in Galapagos seems to be nothing but an annoyance.
In an ideal world where destructions of natural habitats do not exist, people have no business in Galapagos.
That being said, Galapagos has had its share of bad times due to human interventions by introducing foreign species and general overexploitation of natural resources.
On the other hand, people have the power to protect the island and prevent further destructions. Many animals and plants in Galapagos are not found anywhere else on Earth.
Galapagos Islands are an isolated group of land areas in the Pacific Ocean, and therefore many species are endemic.
You don’t have to be a researcher or scientist to love and appreciate the biological diversity or just be mesmerized with the beauty of the islands. This is another kind of safari you will not get from any other country or national park.
Everyone is entitled to an opinion, but people have to agree that the natural wonders of the world are not the things to be argued about. There can be different opinions in determining which one is best indeed, merely because each of the places mentioned above has distinguishable characteristics, delivers a unique sense of beauty, and entices the mind into distinct temptations.