30 Surreal Places That Look Like Taken Straight Out Of A Fairy Tale

If traveling is your thing and you’re the type of person that can’t wait to experience nature’s breathtaking beauty, this is the list to read. We are living in a time where our ecosystems are in constant change. In some places nature has been transformed, in others, it remains unperturbed. This is equally matched by great architectural and artistic creations situated in cities. Many places remain to be discovered, the photos in the following article reveal some hidden gems you won’t believe are real. Keep an eye out for #7 and #3, these belong to some of the few unique landscapes that blend harmoniously man-made structures with Mother Earth’s creation. 

#30. The Pamukkale Hot Springs In Turkey

If you’d have to choose only one place to visit in Turkey, believe me, the Pamukkale Hot Springs would be a top-notch pick. These mesmerizing terraces with their crystal-clear pools are extremely popular and a must-see for every traveler. A world heritage site, Pamukkale means “Cotton Castle” in Turkish, and that’s not a surprise after looking at the gorgeous landscape in the picture.

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The terraces are formed by the limestone contained in the springs, and visitors are really allowed to swim in them! If you’re still not convinced, you should know that Pamukkale is also the site of the ruins of Hierapolis, once a Greek-Roman City.  So, if you’re a history or a nature lover, here’s an ideal destination.

#29. The Tunnel Of Love In Klevan, Ukraine

Unsure of where to head for a romantic getaway? Look no more, because Ukraine’s Tunnel Of Love is the mysterious and romantic place you’re looking for. This beautiful path is about 3 kilometers long, and an easy favorite for local couples in search of a lovely walk.

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The surrounding trees turn this active railway (beware the 3 daily passing trains) into a magical, intensely green corridor; and if visited during the winter, the snow transforms it into a place that looks like taken out of a Disney movie. Keep scrolling for another romantic location at #12!

#28. The Dancing House In Prague, Czech Republic

When visiting some of the many historical sites in Prague, The Dancing House is an unavoidable stop. Though some may scratch their heads when discovering this unusually shaped building, it’s indisputably one of the greatest postmodernist architectural creations in all Czech Republic. Czech president Václav Havel was eager to inaugurate a building at this site which would stand as a cultural icon and an important symbol for democracy.

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Inspired by the legendary dancers Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire, this marvelous example of the deconstructivist architectural style also holds great historical and cultural value. Once there, check the view from the terrace, chances are you’ll never catch a panorama of Prague like this one, so be sure to take your camera!

#27. The Patagonia Marble Caves In Chile

Have you ever visited the Chilean or Argentinian Patagonia? If the answer is no, start looking for the cheapest flights, because you’re missing out on an incredible amount of breathtaking natural wonders like this one. The Marble Caves, which can be found on the General Carrera Lake of Chile, are truly one of the most awe-inspiring formations in the continent.

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Though very isolated (the only way there is by boat) the effort is hugely rewarded. These caves were naturally carved by the lake’s currents over the centuries, producing delicate marble formations which change color during the year because of the water’s light reflection.

#26. The Catacombs In Paris, France

Spectral, terrifying, sinister. All these words apply to the Catacombs of Paris, where the bones of over six million (yes, you read that correctly) people rest. These underground tombs were built during the 18th century when France’s fast developing capital was starting to run out of space for cemeteries.

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You can book a tour through the tunnels, however, not all of them have been mapped, adding an extra tinge of unnerving mystery to the place. Indeed, even the most skeptic of your friends will get goosebumps on this unforgettable visit.

#25. The Crooked House Krzywy Domek In Sopot, Poland

It’s not a hallucination, it’s not an illusion, it defies logic. Built in 2004, the polish, ridiculously shaped building of the city of Sopot, called Krzywy Domek, literally means “crooked little house”.

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The fairy-tale-inspired construction is a popular attraction for tourists, since its bewildering shape surprises any newcomer. The building also boasts a restaurant and some shops. When there, take a picture of Krzywy Domek and send it to your friends, chances are they’ll claim that you edited it with some crazy special effect.

#24. Reed Flute Caves In China

The Reed Flute Caves are one of the top destinations in China. Located in the city of Guilin, these ancient rock formations date back as far as 792 AD and were rediscovered in the 20th century. People built flutes out of the reeds that grow outside these caves, hence the name.

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The natural, limestone, water-eroded cave is illuminated with dazzling, multicolored lights, producing a beautiful show for your eyes. That’s not it, however. Writings can also be found inside the cave, and these date to 800 A.D. This curious spot has had a long tradition of popularity, it seems.

#23. The Sentinels Of The Arctic In Finland

Sentinels are known as those whose job is to keep guard. I bet you’ve never seen Sentinels like the ones inhabiting the Finish Lapland. These are frozen trees that have become covered in snow and ice, and that surprisingly enough appear to be keeping watch.

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The sentinels are scattered throughout a vast territory and these protective giants make a great postcard. Even though the climate conditions are harsh, to say the least, venture there and get the experience of a lifetime… that is if you don’t become a sentinel yourself.

#22. The Elephant Rock In Iceland

Throughout the list, we get a glimpse of several incredible places that seem almost unrealistic. This is one of the most curious natural phenomena that exists. Upon looking at the elephant shaped rock, one is inclined to believe that it was modeled and carved by humans, however, this is a natural formation of rock.

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That’s right, it resulted from a series of volcanic eruptions near Iceland in the ’70s. Needless to say, this place attracts plenty of geology enthusiasts. The elephant rock makes for a very fun photo!

#21. The Dragon Trees In Socotra, Yemen

The dramatically named ‘Dragon Tree’ is also known as Dracaena Cinnabri or ‘Dragon Blood Tree’ and is located in Yemen, near the Arabian Sea. When staring at the tree, doesn’t it look familiar? It’s tree trunk and branches resemble a struggling umbrella that has turned over in an extremely windy day. Who hasn’t had a fight with one in bad weather?

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These funny species produce a unique sap that is bright red resembling ‘dragon’s blood’. We have this to thank for inspiring the name of the tree. Our recommendation, visit this place in spring so you can catch a glimpse of its colorful flowers. Don’t miss the opportunity to learn about another curious Tree in # 4.

#20. Lake Hillier In Australia

When picturing a lake, one generally tends to think the water blue, right? Well, Lake Hillier is a surprising example that not only lakes can vary in color, but they can even be bright bubblegum pink. That’s right, this lake that is located in Australia presents an unusual phenomenon with it’s almost artificial looking color.

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Some scientists agree that this pink anomaly comes from the presence of the organism Dunaliella Salina. This organism causes the salt in the lake to dye a red color, producing the effect visible to us. In fact, in spite of the fact that this is the only living organism in the Lake, there is nothing in it known to harm humans. Do you dare take a dip?

#19. The Turquoise Ice In Lake Baikal, Russia

The turquoise ice is located in Russia. It consists of giant formations of ice in Lake Baikal in Siberia that can be seen above ground level. Did you know this lake contains 20 percent of the Earth’s fresh water? Its beauty comes from the fact that when the water is melted it is shockingly clear, acquiring a turquoise undertone, but when it freezes in the winter, the ice looks like glass.

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Only the brave are recommended to travel here, tours are available year round but beware of the cold. Because of the difficulties involving getting there, this site is not often bustling with tourists like other spots on this list, allowing for a very pleasant experience without having to deal with multitudes.

#18. Chand Baori In Rajasthan

The Chand Baori is located in Rajasthan, India and was built at least a thousand years ago. It consists of a considerably large wall with steps built into the side that lead to a well of water in the center. The first impression is that of its size, the stepwell is one of the largest in the world, secondly, the geometric pattern design immediately catches the eye.

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It is important to remember, however, that this was not only a place that pleased visitors aesthetically but it had also a practical use of extreme importance. The well ensured the region was able to have a supply of water throughout the year. Today, it is mostly the source of many curious visitors and tourists.

#17. The Antelope Canyon In Arizona, United States

The Antelope Canyon is located in Arizona, United States. This is already a frequented place because of the nearby famous attraction Grand Canyon. The Navajo name for the Canyon actually means ‘the place where water runs through rocks’. This image is oddly accurate since the scenery is far from rigid looking. In fact, the rocks seem as if they could slide one over the other at any moment.

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Many photographers and sightseers tend to visit this Canyon. Let that speak for itself. This is truly a place to go and experience the diverse landscapes within the United States that rocks… literally.

#16. Fly Geyser In Nevada

Fly Geyser is located in Nevada. The geyser is actually a spring. Similar to a volcano, it shoots water (instead of lava, of course) during irregular periods of time. This one, in particular, was a consequence of well drilling nearby. The area and field surrounding the geyser are very hot and the water produced there have thermophilic algae which give the rock those strong colors.

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The private island was bought by the non-profit Burning Man Project, which implies that it might soon be open for visitors without getting in trouble for trespassing on private property. Check out #15 for an even more colorful place!

#15. Seven Coloured Earths In Chamarel, Mauritius

This is only one of the places in Mauritius mentioned in this Article. The island holds many astounding natural phenomena that may even seem closer to fantasy than reality. The seven colored piles of earth resulted from the decomposition of volcanic rock, that rains since then have made prints into the hillside.

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The earth’s different colors blend together in such a way that it looks almost man-made, the diverse layers look like a work of art. This is for sure an Instagram-worthy photo, but the camera just doesn’t capture fully the brightness and dimensions of the place. Tourists visit every year to get a glimpse of this surreal natural miracle. Check out another beauty in Mauritius in #6.

#14. The Red Beach In Panjin, China

The red beach is located in Panjin, China. The name doesn’t really come from the fact the water is red, but because the beaches floor is covered in color changing seaweed. Just like forest change color with the seasons, this seaweed follows the cycles of nature.

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In the fall, a red blanket covers the beaches, only to be replaced in the spring, by the color green. In the summer a jade color makes way back to the most craved season; fall. This place is great for family visits since the water is shallow and very fun because of the unique color of the beach. Take a glimpse of another one-of-a-kind beach in #12

#13. Plitvice Lakes In Croatia

The Plitvice Lakes are located in Croatia inside a national park, that has other incredible sights to see. The site receives visitors from all over the world in search of the beauty and tranquility the cascading lakes provide.

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Once you are there, take in the 16 lakes that make-up Plitvice; the different shades of blue in the water, the flora and the music of the waterfalls. This place is so harmonious it will truly move you. Even though the water might tempt anyone to take a swim, it is no longer allowed. Think about it though, such natural beauty should remain untouched and preserved.

#12. The Sea Of Stars In Vaadhoo Island, Maldives

The sea of stars located in the Maldives, in the Indian Ocean. Many people already choose that destination because of its more popular beaches, but next time, you should rethink about going to a crystal clear beach. The inhabitants of the ocean are called Lingulodinium polyedrum, they are phytoplankton and their organisms emit light when the waves force them to move.

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The sight is truly magical, the lights move in sync with the waves, giving off a bright blue glow under a clear night sky. Pick this spot for your next romantic getaway. For more glow in the dark natural phenomena, check out #10.

#11. Chittorgarh In India

Chittorgarh Fort is located in India near Berach river. From its place over a hill, the city can be seen from a distance, which allows visitors to enjoy a different perspective of the buzzing and noisy streets. The fort is said to have been constructed in the seventh century A.D. and has witnessed multiple times of peace as well as conflict and war.

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Since then, it has been used for many local festivals. In 2013 the Chittorgarh Fort was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site, which has allowed for the conservation of this ancestral place, that is also the largest fort in India.

#10. Glowworm Caves In Waitomo, New Zealand

The glow worm cave is located in northern New Zealand and has been open for visitors since it was discovered in the 19th century. Boat tours make regular visits to the caves so tourists can enjoy the natural show and many of the guides are direct descendants of the man who originally explored the cave, a Maori chief.

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The little showmen inside the cave are actually worms, but not any kind. These species attract people from all over the world with the light it emits. Hundreds of worms emit a glow comparable to the beautiful sight of the constellation. It truly is a sight to see.

#9. The Tianzi Mountains In China

The Tianzi Mountains are located in Hunan Province of Chian. These giant mountains resemble infinite Jenga pieces positioned vertically, they have peaks of 1212 meters high and the area covered by these mountains is 67 square kilometers.

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At first glance they look taken out of someplace in an Avatar movie, however, they are formed naturally by erosion over a long period of time. The place is visited by many tourists and tours are also available. This contrasts greatly with the fact that locals and villagers nearby believe the Tianzi Mountains to be sacred.

#8. Lake Natron In Tanzania

Lake Natron is located in Tanzania and is actually quite shallow. However, this is not one of the ordinary lakes that one can just take a dip in, this is a salt lake. What happens is that the water is incredibly rich in minerals, and simultaneously evaporation is very high. This leaves behind a ph greater than 12, giving the lake its characteristic color.

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Bear in mind that while it may not be home to vast numbers of animals like in #1, millions of flamingos make nests in the area. These take advantage of the type of bacteria that grows when salinity increases, and the fact that there are fewer predators around.

#7. Phugtal Monastery In Zanskar Valley

The Phugtal monastery is actually a Buddhist monastery located in the Zanskar valley in Northern India. it was built around a cave, this gives the impression that the monastery is almost part of the landscape and also explains the name Phuk, that means ‘Cave’.

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Given that for Monks, this is a place for contemplation and study, access is restricted to the outside world. In fact, it is one of the few places left that can be reached only on foot. However, festivals throughout the year invite villagers to visit the monastery and help in aiding the preservation of traditions that date back centuries.

#6. The Underwater Waterfall In Mauritius Island

This waterfall is located in Mauritius Island, in the Indian Ocean. As the name suggests, what makes this place so unorthodox is the fact that the waterfall begins within the ocean towards the ocean. That is, it seems as it cascades to the depths of the water. How can it be?

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Scientists discovered that what we perceive as a cascade “is actually sand from the shores of Mauritius being driven via ocean currents off of that high, coastal shelf, and down into the darker ocean depths off the southern tip of the island” reveals ScienceBlogs on its website. The result is stunning and truly one of nature’s most mind-boggling phenomena. If you liked this be sure to pay attention to #2.

#5. The Gloucester Cathedral In Gloucestershire, UK

Even without the Hogwarts students and the marauding ghosts swooping through the corridor, this place is unmistakable. The Gloucester Cathedral was home to the set of the Harry Potter films and is open for visitors. Tours are available and for Harry Potter fans it is a must.

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Furthermore, the Cathedral is unbelievably beautiful. It has a rich architecture and history. Did you know that Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn stayed here for a week in 1535? Or that it hired the first female bishop in the UK? Visitors can learn much more in the Tour.

#4. The Baobab Trees In Africa

These curious trees are native to 30 African countries and are often referred to as the tree of life. The species can live to 2500 years old and their size is huge. Just imagine a 30 meter high and 50-meter wide trunk! But that’s not the only thing that makes this species stand out, the Baobab trees have multiple properties.

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Locals rely on them when there are droughts since its trunk is made of 80 percent water. In addition, the bark is also used for rope and cloth, other by-products include soap, rubber, and glue.

#3. The Devil’s Bridge In Europe

Devil’s Bridge is actually the term for dozens of bridges scattered through Europe. Their characteristic stone or masonry arch is what holds the viewers’ attention and they date back to 1000AD.

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They are not only mesmerizing to watch, but these bridges also take pride in their technological significance (taking into account the context they were built in). Each bridge carries its own myth. Want to know if the local lore is real? Choose one of these famous bridges to cross. You can find them in France, Italy, Germany, and Portugal among other countries.

#2. Bigar Waterfall In Romania

The Bigar Waterfall is located in the Anina Mountains in Romania and is often referred to as “the miracle from the Minis Canyon” by locals. Once you stare at the magical waterfall, the name makes complete sense.

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One thing, in particular, sets this natural phenomenon aside from the rest of its kind; over the rock’s surface, moss grows in abundance, creating a cushion over which the water falls gently into a pool at the base. In addition, the comforter of moss creates plenty of streams, creating the illusion you are looking through a veil.

#1. The Living Root Bridges In Meghalaya

Meghalaya is located in northeastern India and it’s mountainous geography inspired the meaning of its name “the abode of the clouds”. Fun fact: this is the wettest region in the world and even though this climate may result in a challenge for human development, a diversity of animals, plants and insects bursts to life and thrive here.

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But these forests are far from uninhabited, the Khasi tribes are to thank for the mind-blowing living root bridges. What makes them so unique? The bridges found here are alive! They were built using the method of tree shaping. That is, tree trunks are applied and their roots are let to grow. This process usually takes 15 to 30 years and it becomes stronger in time. Are you ready to cross these hundred-year-old bridges?

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