Sea of Stars, Vaadhoo Island, Maldives – This might be the most beautiful nighttime beach spot in existence. The water lapping up the sand looks like it is filled with tiny stars glowing vibrantly. It isn’t any pr stunt or trick, the illumination is actually thanks to tiny microbes called phytoplankton.
The Northern Lights, Alaska – Also known as ‘Aurora Borealis’ in the north and ‘Aurora Australis’ in the south, these lights dancing in the sky are a light show given by nature. Scientifically explained, they are actually “collisions between electrically charged particles from the sun that enter the earth’s atmosphere.” Whatever it is, the display is amazing. Head to Fairbanks for the most reliable viewing spot between September and mid-April. Early March is the ideal time.
Tianzi Mountains, China – If you’ve seen ‘Avatar,’ you have already had a peek at these amazing mountains. Go to Zhangjiajie to witness these amazing slender peeks were formed underwater 380 million years ago, but now reach heights over 4,000 feet above sea level. Visitors can ride cable cars or elevators to explore the area. Guided tours are available, but general feedback advises going at your own leisure is more rewarding. The fog is beautiful in images, but obscuring in reality. Check in before visiting to see if it is a foggy day.
Lake Hillier, Australia – It looks like strawberry milk and scientists still aren’t 100% sure as to what causes the hue, but the saline lake is safe for humans and wildlife alike. A small strip of shoreline separates the lake from the ocean, but bubblegum color is just as brilliant no matter how you look at it.
Glowworm Caves, Waitomo, New Zealand – Take a boat road through a cave illuminated by tiny fly larva that drop down sticky filaments to attract a meal. It sounds odd, but the silent and breathtaking beauty of nature will overcome you.
Hamilton Pool, Texas – Located on a reserve, the swimming hole came into being after massive erosion caused an underground river to collapse. It’s busy during the summer and you might run into a line, but the beauty is worth the wait. Morning and weekdays are the quietest time to visit. Bring water and hiking shoes!
Pamukkale Hot Springs, Turkey – Think of it as nature’s hot tubs. It may look like snow and ice, but white limestone is responsible for the deceptive appearance. You will be comfortable in your bikini any time of year. Soak in the springs and then explore the area for an amazing adventure.
Giant’s Causeway, Northern Ireland – The landscape is something that has been recreated in hundreds of paintings…and for good reason. The interlocking basalt columns were created by an ancient volcanic eruption. It left a stunning natural wonder. You can tour the area with a guide, but prepared to do some hiking. Well worth the effort though.