From awe-inspiring peaks to the deep blue depths of pristine waters, and dense, mysterious forests to never-ending dunes in our many deserts, our world houses inexplicable beauty, if only we take the time to explore it and truly see what a wonderful world we live in!
While one little article could never do the wonders of this planet justice, I'm going to list at least the top 10 most beautiful locations one could visit during this lifetime. These are definitely on my bucket list.
Growing up, we always read about oases in the desert, lending respite to tired travellers, however, one never knew about the expanse an oasis could cover and how a whole village or town could be built around one. Huacachina, in Peru, is one such marvel. You could sit on sand dunes and take in the warm hues at dusk. Capture the view of a dream-like oasis, lined with palm trees and hotels where luxury awaits the traveller. If you enjoy a place that oozes mystery and romance, then Huacachina must make it to your list.
Milford Sound, New Zealand
If you're a movie buff like me, then you've probably watched and enjoyed The Lord of the Rings and always wondered or googled where it was filmed! Milford Sound is a 1692 metre-high mountainous fjord is where parts of The Lord of the Rings was shot and one of the primary reasons so many of us were glued to our screens watching these films. The famed movies worked wonders in popularising this destination and teem with more than 50,000 tourists annually. What's great is that this area is accessible on foot, by helicopter or even bus.
Machu Picchu, Peru
We all love and need a little mystery in our lives, won't you agree? For those of us who travel, you will agree that each destination has its own charm, its own air in a sense, and envelopes you in a feeling that is inherently only something native to that location. Machu Pichu however, is even beyond this. The lost civilisation of the Incas, the city was built back in 1450 and was never discovered until the early 20th century, resulting in most of its architectural beauty remaining intact. Do hike up the hills to the Inca Trail look-out point to get the best view of the city.
The undulating terrain of this region is truly odd, yet, extremely beautiful. Cappadocia is made up of hills and boulders made out of soft stone. These formations are completely different from hills you will see anywhere else in the world. The soft stone in the area allowed inhabitants to carve out cave-like shelters underground. These too are structures to behold. This region is famed for the hot-air balloon rides that give tourist a birds-eye view of this fascinating landscape. On most days these multi-coloured balloons fill the sky with vibrant hues; truly a sight to behold.
Whitehaven Beach, Whitsundays, Australia
If you're a sun and sand lover, then Whitehaven Beach is a must-visit location for you. A pristine stretch of 7km of white sand provides breathtaking views of different hues and formations during low tide. Truly a photographer's paradise, this beach is accessible from Hamilton Island and the ports of Shute Harbour and Airlie Beach. To take in the best views, go up to Tongue Point. Click away!
Banff National Park, Canada
Once again, a photographer's dream location, Banff National Park has truly proven to hold the position of one of the most beautiful and picturesque locations in Canada, attracting both Canadians and tourists alike. The park is known for its beautiful lakes, like Lake Moraine and Louise, and the glacial Lake Minnewanka. You can also take in the views of the Canadian Rockies and wildlife.
For a location to be voted as the best island in the world, it must meet some unmatched standards of beauty! Boracay was voted so, for its breathtaking coastlines and mesmerising sunsets. Fame does come at a price though, resulting in the area being over-crowded with tourists for a while, and had to be closed for rehabilitation. It has opened up since, and now only welcomes a limited number of visitors per day.
Boulders Beach, South Africa
Famed for the adorable African penguin, Boulders Beach is located off the False Bay Coastline, a few miles south of Table Mountain. Adding to the charm of the place are bright blue waters, dotted with granite boulders. One could choose to swim here, or even sit back and enjoy a view of the beautiful coastline.
Cabo San Lucas, Mexico
Cabo is so much more than a place for college kids to party. Spread across 5,000 miles of coastline, and housing landscapes ranging from snow-capped peaks with volcanoes to deserts, Cabo is also known for 67 national parks. Most of us would want to enjoy the luxury of our resorts when on vacation, but getting out to explore the marine life and turquoise waters is so much more worth it.
Cliffs of Moher, Ireland
Located south of Galway, the cliffs of Moher were also known as the Cliffs of Insanity (in the film, The Princess Bride). Very few places do justice to the bare, natural beauty of the island, like this one. This wonder, reaching 702 feet at its highest point, is truly a place to visit in this lifetime. The place has a soul so deep, that it will envelop everyone who visits.