Natural wonders of the world

Profile picture of

View Profile All Posts
21st Jun 2012
Written by: Andrew Tipp

Natural wonders of the world

Inspiring natural wonders of the world video goes viral

A YouTube video profiling 10 of the lesser known natural wonders of the world is going viral, with more than 150,000 views since it was uploaded on Monday.

The film showcases some of the planet's most mind-blowing natural phenomena, including Bolivia's epic salt flats, Turkmenistan's Gates of Hell and Madagascar's limestone needle forest.

Marcus Sherifi, spokesperson for, said: "This video is amazing, and really highlights some of the most awesome natural wonders of the world.

"We always advise backpackers see the classic sights in the world like the Amazon, Victoria Falls and Halong Bay, but this video shows that there are brilliant places out there that gap year travellers might have not even heard of."

Sherifi added: "Some of these natural wonders don't see many tourists, so if you really want to get off the typical backpacker trail these are the places to go."

The natural wonders of the world film is inspiring, with the whole thing set to cool music and location changes slickly edited using Google Maps.

The entire video is essentially a series of highlights, but even within this list there are some stand-out locations. There's Wulinguan National Park in China, is an ancient tropical sea floor with lush, mist-covered sandstone columns that don't look a million miles away from the floating islands in sci-fi blockbuster Avatar.

Then there's the Socotra Archipelago in Yemen, a beautiful and stark isolated landform. A third of its plant life is found nowhere else on Earth; definitely an untapped gap year destination.

Finally, there's the Richat Structure in Mauritania, a 50 km-wide geological feature in the Sahara desert. It's a mind-blowing phenomenon, and thought to be caused by erosion and uplift rather than a meteor or – our favourite hypothesis – aliens.

The top 10 lesser known wonders of the natural world is completed by Belize's barrier reef – the largest in the western hemisphere – Namibia's Namib Desert and America's two entries: the multi-coloured Grand Prismatic Spring and erosion-formed Southwestern Slot Canyons.

Travellers are pretty familiar with ‘wonders of the world' lists. For centuries everyone was content with the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, which featured legendary sites such as the Lighthouse of Alexandria, the Colossus of Rhodes and Hanging Gardens of Babylon.

Then the world realised only one of these structures was still standing – the Great Pyramid of Giza. This made the list more of a history lesson than an interesting travel compilation so the New7Wonders of the World was introduced, which included backpacker classics such as Christ the Redeemer in Brazil, the Taj Mahal in India and the Great Wall of China in, well, China.

But these are, of course, all man-made wonders. What about the natural wonders of the world? We ran a story back in November on the New 7 Wonders of Nature. It's got lots of really nice photos.

Is that list better than this latest video compilation? You decide…

Gappers Richard Puchalka and Andrzej Staszek visited the Gates of Hell in Turkmenistan

Want to see the Gates of Hell in Turkmenistan? Read this feature about gappers Richard Puchalka and Andrzej Staszek, who stopped by on the Mongol Rally.

Main image photo by James Mooney, Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia


Waterski and Wakeboard Jobs

from £295

56 - 84 days

United States of America

Spend your summer days in a speed boat, working at a camp in the USA. We are looking for waterskiers...

Adventures in London, Paris & Italy

from £21000

7 - 84 days

France, Italy, United Kingdom

Join us for this great European adventure; 2 weeks in London, 1 week in Paris, 1 week in South of...

Backpacking Tour of China

from £1015

16 - 25 days


Backpack to the most populated and vibrant cities in the world and explore untouched countryside. Travel with a group and...

Amazing Turkey By Gulet

from £450

10 days


This awesome tour starts off exploring Istanbul the former capital of Turkey before heading off to Gallipoli to pay respect...

South Island Heli Tour

from £3075

7 days

New Zealand

Welcome to New Zealand’s Ultimate Heli Ski Tour! Over 7 days we will heli 3 different mountain ranges and head...

Physiotherapy Placement in Madagascar

from £445

7 - 140 days


This exciting programme will challenge you and open your eyes to the reality of working as a medical professional in...

Care and Community in Cambodia, Summer 2018

from £1370

14 days


Volunteers make a difference in the lives of underprivileged children by dividing their time between running fun educational activities and...

Tenerife Marine Conservation

from £350

7 - 70 days


This project will give you the perfect opportunity to learn about these creatures and gain experience in conservation as your...

Adventure, Leadership and Outdoor Certifications

from £7500

65 days

Costa Rica, Panama

Discover your strengths, goals, and leadership style as you earn seven international certifications while hiking, rafting, diving, and rappelling your...

Grand Traverse – Both Islands

from £1400

15 days

New Zealand

In 2 weeks launching from Auckland you will see the best of both islands with a unique combination of camping...


Wildlife Parks of Tanzania

from £5149

Here's an African adventure that starts among Tanzania's most famous wildlife reserves before taking you to remote under-explored national parks...

Los Angeles to San Francisco Express

from £637

LA, San Francisco, Vegas, the Grand Canyon – they might as well rename this whole region "The American Best." Steel...

Cruise from Manhattan to Miami

from £1444

From Manhattan to Miami, cruise down the east coast with this one of a kind trip starting with the madness...

Machu Picchu by Train Independent Adventure

from £539

They say the journey is part of the experience of seeing Machu Picchu in person – but no one said...

Norwegian Fjord Trekking

from £1549

The Vikings were some of the toughest people to ever walk this earth, and looking at the land that spawned...

Belgian Beer Tour

from £1232

Some people’s idea of a beer adventure is checking out that pub two streets over from the local. The true...

Galápagos Island Hopping with Quito

from £1709

We know the dilemma: You want to maximize your time exploring the Galápagos Islands, and that includes making it as...

Cape and Namibia Adventure

from £1247

From the cosmopolitan streets of Cape Town to the desert and lunar scenery of Namibia, witness the diversity of southwestern...

Best of Argentina & Brazil

from £1530

Get a taste of the rhythms of Argentina and Brazil on this southern adventure journeying from Buenos Aires to Rio...

[contact-form-7 id="4" title="Contact form 1"]