My Favorite Natural Wonders Around the World

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This week, the #FriFotos theme is “Earth Day.”  After thinking for a bit, I decided that the best way to exemplify this theme would be to show photos of my favorite natural wonders around the world.

I hope that the coming generations continue to keep these wonderful places protected.

Wadi Rum, Jordan — this desert knocked my socks off.  I knew it would be good, but I didn’t expect to be agape almost the entire time, so privileged that I was actually standing in the middle of it.

The Tirolean Alps — hiking through these mountains outside Innsbruck was one of the most physically taxing things I have ever done, but it was worth it for views like this.

Thailand’s Andaman Coast — seen here from Phranang Beach, Railay, in Krabi Province.  Come to this beach and you’ll leave with postcard photos.  Particularly during the low season.

Shetland — all of it!  This double beach was probably the single most impressive place we saw in the archipelago.

Cappadocia, Turkey — once again, it’s one of those places you need to see to believe.  You get out into the fields and suddenly realize that they are much, MUCH larger than they appear.

Halong Bay, Vietnam — I may remember Halong Bay mostly for being the location of the greatest party cruise on the face of the Earth, but it’s such a beautiful place and deserves its recognition among the world’s greatest wonders.

White Sands National Monument, New Mexico, USA — this is one place in America that doesn’t get as much recognition as it should, but you won’t regret taking the time to visit.

Dead Sea, Jordan — yet another icon of the Middle East, shared by Jordan, Israel, and Palestine.  I remember being stunned as I slipped into the Dead Sea and realized I was looking across the sea at Bethlehem!

Snowdonia National Park in Wales.  From the moment you cross into North Wales from Chester, the landscape changes and becomes almost blindingly beautiful.  It’s amazing how sudden it is.  The Welsh drew that line well.

And finally, the Bolaven Plateau in southern Laos.  So far from everything in the world and very under the radar, but not for long.

Not all of the natural wonders I’ve seen are here.  I don’t have photos from my childhood trips to the Grand Canyon and Niagara Falls.

And this list makes me think about the natural wonders I want to visit the most:  Antarctica, the Arctic, the Salar de Uyuni in Bolivia, the Sossuvlei in Namibia, Palawan in the Philippines, the Galapagos Islands, and everything in New Zealand.  Just for starters.

I WILL get there.

#FriFotos is open to all.  To see more photos from everyone else, follow #FriFotos on Twitter.

Which photo is your favorite?

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29 thoughts on “My Favorite Natural Wonders Around the World”

  1. White Sands is very high up on my list of national parks to visit next! Sadly, my sister and I couldn’t fit it in last summer on our road trip, as it was a little too far south. It looks amazing, though!

  2. I’ve never would have taken a second look at Jordan, until I chanced upon your posts. Now, it’s on my list! 🙂 I’m so happy you put in Palawan in your list, too — the bustling underwater life is a knockout. 🙂

  3. You are so fortunate to have seen such beautiful places, our world is full of them. Your photographs are truly inspiring!

    One tip 😉 next time you travel pack a pair of hand beaded sandals which you can find on my website,, you’ll be amazed at how pretty, versitile, colourful and above all, comfortable these are 😉

  4. Wow. Those photos are BEAUTIFUL! You always take such great photographs!! I am definitely adding all these places to my bucket list. Thanks for sharing, Kate! 🙂

    1. That was taken at Tat Lo. Tat Lo is the main tourist town there — they have a bunch of cheap bungalows. Mine had a balcony and that view, and it cost about $3 a night.

  5. The White Sands National Monument photo is AMAZING–it takes my breath away! But the one I would most like to go to is the Dead Sea in Jordan–definitely a bucket list place for me.

  6. Amen about Cappadocia! I’d seen photos and was curious, but when I got there, my jaw dropped. It was like a fairytale!

    Beautiful photos – Snowdonia, the Andaman coast, Laos, and the Shetlands are my favourite shots here (so, like half of them haha). The one of the mountains in Austria just gives me vertigo!

  7. I’ve heard so many people condemn Halong Bay for being so over-touristed that I was beginning to wonder whether it was worth the splurge to see it on the upcoming RTW trip my husband and I are in the process of planning. Your photo of it is so stunning that I know I have to see it with my own eyes, even if it has become a bit of a cliché at this point. I truly believe that when you’re witnessing the natural majesty of the earth, it’s hard to truly spoil that.

    I’m definitely going to be digging around for more info on Cappadocia and the Bolaven Plateau as well!

  8. I haven’t done most of these. However, I love the Tirolean Alps!! And Wales is very high on my list. The rest I will need to add to my list. I do have a fascination with the UK at the moment.

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