The Stone Forest of Madagascar
The Grand Tsingy of Bemaraha in western Madagascar is the world’s largest stone forest. Isolated and inhospitable, this huge collection of razor-sharp, high spiked vertical rocks of eroded limestone looks like the last place where wildlife would thrive.
But despite its cold, dangerous appearance, the labyrinth of 300 foot stones is home to a number of animal species, including 11 types of lemur. Its name “Tsingy” translates as ‘where one cannot walk’.
(Source: Daily Mail)
Grand Prismatic Spring
Located in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, the Grand Prismatic Spring is the largest natural hot spring found in the US. The spring has a scalding temperature of 160 °F (70 °C), a total depth of 160 feet and a diameter of 300 feet. The vivid, rainbow colors in the spring are the result of pigmented bacteria in the microbial mats that grow around the edges of the mineral-rich water.
Amazing Green Landscape Patterns
Green landscapes captured by Polish photographers Marek Kiedrowski and Krzysztof Browko. All these gorgeous photos were taken in Toscana, Italy and in Moravia, a historical region of the Czech Republic.
Stunning Landscape - Cappadocia, Turkey
The mysterious rock formations and underground cities of Cappadocia make this region of Turkey one the most beautiful in the world. The rich history of this site can be told through the villages, subterranean churches and fortresses that have been carved straight into the soft, porous, eerily eroded rock.
Popular activities in the region include visits to the underground cities, viewing the ancient Christian cave art, seeing the “fairy chimney” rock formations, and taking sunrise hot air balloon rides for a view of the breathtaking landscape from above.
Horseshoe Bend, Arizona
Located on the Colorado River, Horseshoe Bend is a geological marvel. Here is where the Colorado River, cutting through rock over the course of millions of years, created a wide sweep around this sandstone escarpment. It created a 270° horseshoe-shaped bend in the canyon. This beautiful spot is only 7 miles north of the Grand Canyon.
Rare Nacreous Clouds
Also called polar stratospheric clouds or mother of pearl clouds, nacreous clouds are mostly visible within two hours after sunset or before dawn. They blaze unbelievably bright with vivid, iridescent colors. These clouds are rare and occur in the polar stratosphere at altitudes of 15,000–25,000 meters. They are so bright because at those heights, they are still sunlit.
Although incredibly beautiful, they have a negative impact on our atmosphere. They create ozone holes by supporting chemical reactions that produce active chlorine which catalyzes ozone destruction.
Blood Falls, a Natural Time Capsule Containing a Unique Ecosystem
This five-story, blood-red “waterfall” pours ever so slowly out of the Taylor Glacier in Antarctica’s McMurdo Dry Valley. Geologists first discovered the frozen waterfall in 1911, and believed the red color came from algae. Its true nature turned out to be more spectacular.
Roughly two million years ago, a small body of water containing an ancient community of microbes was sealed beneath the surface of the Taylor Glacier. Trapped below a thick layer of ice, the microbes have remained isolated inside a natural time capsule, in a place with no light, oxygen, or heat.
The trapped lake has very high salinity and is rich in iron, which gives the seepage its red color. A fissure in the glacier allows the microbial subglacial lake to flow out, forming the falls without contaminating the ecosystem within.
More photos of Blood Falls can be seen on Atlas Obscura
The Most Intense Color of Any Living Thing on Earth
Also known as the marble berry, Pollia condensata is a wild plant that grows in the forests of several African countries. The berries are not edible, but they have an extremely rare property. They produce the most intense color of any living thing on Earth. Even after the berries have been picked from the plant, they stay the same shiny, vibrant, metallic blue color for many decades.
The vast majority of colors in the biological world are produced by pigments—compounds produced by a living organism that selectively absorb certain wavelengths of light, so that they appear to be the color of whichever wavelengths they reflect.
However, the marble berry’s skin has no pigment. The berries produce their vibrant blue color through nanoscale-sized cellulose strands that scatter light as they interact with one another. Thus the fruit’s color is even visible at the cellular level as pictured above.
The Tessellated Tiles of Tasmania
Strangely created by nature and not man are the tessellated tiles of Tasmania. Located near the southern end of Tasmania on the Tasman Peninsula, Eaglehawk Neck is a thin stretch of land which links two Islands. It is the Earth’s finest example of tessellated pavement.
Tessellated pavement is an extremely rare erosional feature that forms in flat sedimentary rock lying on ocean shores. The pavement earned this name due to rocks fracturing into polygonal blocks that resemble tiles or tessellations. The resulting patterns are another example of nature’s beauty and mystery.