The Seven Natural Wonders of the World: A Guide for First-Time Visitors
If you've experienced the ancient and modern wonders and you’re wondering where to go for your next big adventure, add these natural wonders to your list.
While many man-made feats fill us with awe, no one does it quite like Mother Nature and the Seven Natural Wonders of the World.
What Are the Seven Natural Wonders of The World?
When you’re weary of the bright lights of the big city, taking time in nature can replenish both body and soul and shine a light on the big picture of who we are and our place in the grand scheme of things.
From beautiful displays of atmospheric power to monumental peaks and summits, a trip to the world’s greatest iconic natural sites can help fire up the senses, awaken new passions and build lasting memories.
1. The Aurora Borealis
From the northern regions of Canada and Alaska to the stunning landscapes of Norway, Sweden, Finland and Iceland, the Aurora Borealis occur between 60 and 75 degrees of latitude all year round. This awe-inspiring atmospheric phenomenon creates undulating waves of vibrant green, purple and red lights that dance across the sky, captivating those who get to experience them. Don't let the bright summer nights fool you, these atmospheric forces are always at work.
For the ultimate sky-gazing experience, venture out between November to February when the darkness prevails for longer, giving you ample time to witness the magic of the Northern Lights. Keep an eye out between 9pm and 2am for the most spectacular displays.
One of the best places to see the Northern Lights is at the Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort in Finland. This remote resort offers a unique and unforgettable viewing experience with its cosy domed igloos. The igloos are made of glass, so you can lie in bed and watch the Northern Lights dance overhead. It's an experience you'll never forget.
If you’re heading to Finland, here are some additional ideas for making your trip even more memorable:
- Take a snowmobile safari through the Arctic wilderness
- Go ice fishing on a frozen lake
- Visit a reindeer farm and meet the locals
- Enjoy a traditional Finnish sauna
"Revel in the magnificence of the Northern Lights – it's the perfect spot to surround yourself with the sheer vastness of Mother Nature."
2. The Grand Canyon, USA
Get ready for an adventure of a lifetime at the majestic Grand Canyon. Spanning a staggering 277 miles in length and 18 miles across at its widest point, the Grand Canyon offers breathtaking views that are unparalleled anywhere else in the world.
Located in the northwest corner of Arizona, it's an easy day trip from the vibrant city of Las Vegas. Alternatively, you can choose to extend your stay and explore the many hiking trails available to truly immerse yourself in the beauty of the canyon.
With so many viewpoints, visitor services, and hotels available, the South Rim is a popular choice amongst visitors. The West Rim offers a unique experience with its overhanging sky rim walk that allows you to literally float over the canyon on a glass walkway, making for an adrenaline-fueled thrill.
If hiking isn't your thing, why not take in the sights from a bird's eye view with a helicopter tour from Las Vegas? And, when it's time to wind down, the Palms Casino Resort in Vegas offers a luxurious stay that will make all your dreams come true!
While you're there, don't miss the breathtaking Hoover Dam, a true feat of engineering marvel that's sure to leave you in awe. It’s the perfect trip for those in search of nature, wonder and the thrills of Las Vegas and the Nevada desert.
3. The Great Barrier Reef
Dive into a world of wonder at Australia's Great Barrier Reef. Home to over 900 islands, 3,000 separate reefs and a diverse ecosystem, this underwater marvel is the largest coral reef system in the world and is the only natural wonder that's hidden underwater.
Stretching over 1,800 miles down the east coast of Queensland (that's longer than the Great Wall of China), the Great Barrier Reef is a top attraction for both scuba divers and snorkelers, eager to explore its vibrant underwater world. If staying dry is more your style, you can still witness the beauty of this magnificent ecosystem by taking a glass-bottomed boat trip.
If you’re a first-time visitor to the area, why not stay on one of the many luxurious island resorts that dot the reef? Here, you can relax and unwind in the lap of luxury, surrounded by breathtaking ocean views, with the Barrier Reef just a paddle away.
Here are some of the best islands to stay on while you explore the Great Barrier Reef:
- Hamilton Island: This popular island resort offers a wide range of activities and amenities, from sailing and world-class diving, to luxurious spas and golf courses.
- Lizard Island: This exclusive island resort is perfect for those looking for a truly luxurious experience. With only 40 villas on the island, you'll feel like you have the whole place to yourself.
- Bedarra Island: This family-friendly island resort is perfect for those looking for a relaxed and enjoyable vacation. With plenty of activities, you're sure to have a great time.
- Fitzroy Island: This eco-friendly island resort is perfect for those looking to get back to nature. With stunning beaches and lush rainforests, you'll feel like you're in a world of your own.
4. Mount Everest
Embark on a legendary adventure at the breathtaking Mount Everest – a natural wonder with an almost mythical quality that has magnetised adventurers through the ages. Towering over the borders of Nepal and Tibet, Mount Everest is the tallest mountain on earth, stretching a massive 29,032 feet into the sky. It's little wonder that this mammoth Himalayan peak attracts thrill-seekers from all corners of the world.
For those daring enough to take on the challenge, trekkers can hike to base camp, fully immersing themselves in the mountain's incredible landscape, while feeling the rush of adventure coursing through their veins.
If you're not up for the climb, don't fret! You can schedule a flight around the mountain for a 360-degree aerial view, giving you an unforgettable perspective of the magnificence of Everest. Pack your gear, summon your courage, and get ready to create the story of a lifetime at Mount Everest, where real legends are made.
Here are some of the things you can experience when you visit Mount Everest:
- Hike to Base Camp: The hike to Everest Base Camp is a challenging but rewarding experience. You'll get to see some of the most stunning scenery in the world, and you'll feel a sense of accomplishment when you reach the base of the mountain.
- Fly Around the Mountain: If you're not up for the hike, you can always take a flight around Mount Everest. This is a great way to see the mountain from all angles, and you'll get some amazing photos to remember your trip by.
- Go Mountaineering: If you're an experienced mountaineer, you can attempt to climb Mount Everest. This is a dangerous and challenging endeavour, but it's also an incredibly rewarding one. If you're successful, you'll be one of the few people in the world who can say they've stood on the top of the world.
- Learn About the Local Culture: Mount Everest is in Nepal and the local culture is fascinating. Be sure to take some time to learn about the people and their way of life.
- Enjoy the Food: The food in Nepal is delicious. Be sure to try some of the local dishes, such as momo (dumplings) and thukpa (soup).
Mount Everest is a truly amazing place, and it's an experience that you'll never forget. If you're looking for an adventure, then you need to add Mount Everest to your list of places to visit.
Discover special offers and discount voucher codes to save on travel, fashion, wine, personal development and more, curated especially for you.
Paricutin is one of the lesser-known wonders of the world, but it's no less impressive than its more famous counterparts. This stunning and awe-inspiring cone-shaped volcano is in Michoacán, Mexico. It first emerged during a volcanic eruption in 1943. The eruption was so explosive that it buried two local villages in ash, and it continued to erupt for nine years before finally going dormant.
Today, Paricutin remains one of the youngest volcanoes in the world, rising an incredible 1,475 feet from the Earth in its first year and reaching its peak at 7,480 feet in 1952. With its perfectly symmetrical shape and stunning surroundings, a hike around the lava fields is an unforgettable experience that will leave you feeling energised and alive. Or, for those feeling even more adventurous, taking a trek to the summit of Paricutin is an experience like no other!
As you hike up the volcano, you'll be able to see the vast landscape of Mexico spread out before you. You'll also be able to see the crater of the volcano, which is now filled with a beautiful blue lake. The hike to the top of Paricutin is challenging, but it's worth it for the stunning views.
Once you reach the top of the volcano, you'll be able to take in the full majesty of Paricutin. You'll be able to see the perfectly symmetrical cone of the volcano, as well as the surrounding lava fields. The views from the top of Paricutin are simply breathtaking, and they're sure to leave you feeling a sense of awe and wonder.
This stunning volcano is a true natural wonder, and it's waiting for you to discover its secrets.
6. Rio de Janeiro Harbour
Rio de Janeiro Harbour is the world’s largest natural bay. Nestled amidst stunning granite mountains and pinnacles formed by the natural erosion of the Atlantic Ocean, it’s a true marvel of nature that must be seen to be believed.
For an unforgettable experience, hop on the railway to Tijuca National Park and head to the uppermost region. From there, you can marvel at the panoramic views from the many viewing platforms. From this vantage point, you can also catch a glimpse of the famous Christ the Redeemer statue (a New Modern Wonder of the World), standing tall and proud against the skyline.
But why stop there? Take your adventure to new heights and explore the harbour via helicopter, where you can witness the immensity of this natural wonder from a totally different perspective.
As you soar over the bay, you'll be able to see the many islands that dot the landscape. You'll also be able to see the city of Rio de Janeiro sprawled out below you. It's a truly breathtaking sight.
"Immerse yourself in the stunning views of Rio's harbour whilst sipping a caiprhinia."
7. Victoria Falls, Africa
The majestic Victoria Falls, straddling Zambia and Zimbabwe in Africa, awaits your arrival. Known locally as 'the smoke that thunders', this breathtaking waterfall is more than one kilometre in length and puts all other waterfalls to shame.
The falls are so large that they can be seen from space, and the spray from the water can reach up to 400 metres into the air. The falls are also home to a variety of wildlife, including elephants, lions, and leopards.
The best time to visit Victoria Falls is at the end of the rainy season in April. During this time, the falls are at their fullest and the mist from the water creates a magical atmosphere.
And if you're deciding which side of the falls to visit, we suggest heading to the Zimbabwean side. This side of the falls offers unbeatable viewing platforms, top-notch visitor facilities, and excellent choices of hotels. It's also the perfect start or end point for a safari trip!
- Take a helicopter ride over the falls, for a bird's-eye view
- Go white-water rafting on the Zambezi River
- Go on a game drive to see elephants, lions, and other wildlife
- Visit the Victoria Falls Rainforest, home to a variety of plant and animal life
- Enjoy a traditional African dinner and dance performance
With so much to see and do, Victoria Falls is the perfect destination for an unforgettable holiday.
If these amazing hotels have got you feeling inspired, there’s plenty more on offer at Hotels.com.