In­spire Me

Nes­tled in var­i­ous parts of the world, far from the busy cities, are the roads less trav­elled. From Viet­nam to Green­land, we present a few spec­tac­u­lar nat­u­ral—and man-made—phe­nom­e­non that are sim­ply breath­tak­ing. By Kim­berly Tan

World Travel Magazine - - Contents -

Na­ture has in­fi­nite ways to in­spire us. From the ran­dom to the sym­met­ri­cal, be it the con­trasts or the sim­plic­ity, far away from city lights and tick­ing crowds there is beauty in na­ture that needs to be pre­served. Ex­plore the world with a fresh per­spec­tive.

FRIGID BEAUTY : GREEN­LAND

The world’s largest is­land, Green­land is home to a spec­tac­u­lar back­drop of ice­bergs and ice­fjords, of which the Ilulis­sat ice­fjord is per­haps the most fa­mous. A re­mark­able nat­u­ral phe­nom­e­non, the UN­ESCO World Her­itage listed ice­fjord has a stun­ning ar­ray of ice­bergs de­liv­ered here by a glacier at a speed of about 35 me­ters per day. Some of these can be up to 30 me­ters high and are sim­ply breath­tak­ing to look at. Aside from the ice in the cen­tre, the ter­rain also in­cludes dry Arc­tic desert in the north­ern fringe and belts of green in the south. Pho­to­graph by Daniel Kor­dan

SALT SPLENDOR : BO­LIVIA

The world’s largest salt flat is lo­cated at Salar de Uyuni in south­west Bo­livia, and is best dur­ing the rainy months in the first few months of the year, where the rain cov­ers the flats and cre­ates a per­fectly re­flec­tive sur­face. A few me­ters of salt cov­ers the salt flat and also con­tains 50 to 70 per­cent of the world’s lithium re­serves, which are cur­rently be­ing ex­tracted. Salar de Uyuni is a ma­jor breed­ing ground for var­i­ous species of flamin­gos. Stay at the Pala­cio de Sal to com­plete the ex­pe­ri­ence—the en­tire ho­tel is made out of salt. Pho­to­graph by Jeff Lond

AN­TE­LOPE CANYON : ARI­ZONA

One of the most pho­tographed canyons for its unique struc­ture is the An­te­lope Canyon, on Navajo in Ari­zona. The canyon, made of two sep­a­rate sec­tions—up­per An­te­lope Canyon and Lower An­te­lope Canyon—is formed by ero­sion of the Navajo Sand­stone. Dur­ing the mon­soon sea­son, rain­wa­ter runs into the basin, and over time has eroded the pas­sage­ways, creat­ing the un­usual shapes of the walls of the canyon. Prob­a­bly the best time to travel there is in the sum­mer months (March to Oc­to­ber), where light beams stream through the canyon. One of the best places to stay around the area is the Aman­giri in Utah. Pho­to­graph by An­drea Iz­zotti

PINK PER­FEC­TION : IN­DONE­SIA

Aside from vis­it­ing the largest liv­ing lizard, the Ko­modo dragon, the high­light of the Ko­modo Is­land is one of the most pic­turesque beaches, known as the Pink Beach. Mi­cro­scopic an­i­mals pro­duce a red pig­ment that tints the shore­line a rosy pink hue. The is­land is lo­cated west of Flores in Nusa Teng­gara, In­done­sia. Ac­tiv­i­ties on this is­land—if you’re not con­tent to bask in the sun­light on the sand—in­clude snorkelling, div­ing, kayak­ing, or sim­ply watch­ing the spec­tac­u­lar sun­sets. Pho­to­graph by Jor­dan Ham­mond

MAG­NIF­I­CENT RICE TER­RACES : VIET­NAM

Away from the hub­bub of the cities in Viet­nam—a nine-hour train ride and an­other one hour by taxi or shut­tle bus from Lao Cai—sapa Val­ley is renowned for its im­pres­sive paddy rice ter­races. These are set against the back­drop of the Hoang Lien moun­tains and are ploughed by the eth­nic mi­nori­ties, such as the Hmong hill tribe—with the help of wa­ter buf­faloes. An overnight stay with the lo­cals could be an un­for­get­table ex­pe­ri­ence, but for some­thing a lit­tle more lux­u­ri­ous, book a room with Topas Ecolodge and Vic­to­ria Sapa Re­sort. Pho­to­graph by Kaiskynet Stu­dio

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