Maria Zafar

Written by

June 8, 2021


There is nothing in this world that comes even close to the beauty and magnificence of Creation by Allah (SWT).

From waterfalls to dense forests, to vast deserts: the Earth is truly breathtakingly stunning.

This is why Islamic Relief has dedicated a whole blog to highlight some of these beautiful world wonders.

Take a look, subhanAllah!

 

1. The Northern Lights

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The Northern Lights over Canadian forest.

The Northern Lights are located in the geographical location known as the Aurora Zone.

This area includes Finland, Sweden, Norway, Iceland, Greenland and Canada.

This astonishingly beautiful display of lights is made from a collision between electrically charged particles from the sun that enter the atmosphere of the earth. SubhanAllah!

Of course, avid photographers flock to this area every year to get a glimpse of these amazing lights.

The most common colour that can be witnessed by the human eye in the Aurora is green.

This is because the majority of solar particles collide with the atmosphere at an altitude of around 60 to 150 miles and it’s at this point the oxygen causes the Aurora to be seen in green.

At higher altitudes, other colours such as red can also be seen, creating a truly beautiful effect.

 

2. The Grand Canyon

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Toroweap point at sunrise, Grand Canyon National Park.

The Grand Canyon is a national treasure of the United States. Famous for its layered red rock formation, each layer unveils a geographical archive.

Located in Arizona in the South-West of the USA, over five million visitors flock to the national park every year to discover this natural beauty.

The Grand Canyon is home to many caves. With an estimated 1000 caves, 350 have been officially recorded. However, only one cave is open to the public. This is the Cave of the Domes on Horseshoe Mesa.

Teddy Roosevelt was instrumental in the protection and preservation of the Grand Canyon. He was so moved by the location’s magnificence that in 1906, Roosevelt signed a bill that declared the area the Grand Canyon Game Reserve before later making it a national monument.

When speaking of the Grand Canyon, he said: “Leave it as it is. You cannot improve on it. The ages have been at work on it, and man can only mar it”.

 

3. Mount Everest

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Mount Everest – a natural wonder!

This list of the world’s greatest wonders would of course be incomplete without mentioning Mount Everest.

At 29,032 feet (8,849 metres) high, Mount Everest is considered the highest point on Earth above sea level.

This beautiful mountain is located in the Mahalangur Himal sub-range of the Himalayas with a summit that borders China and Nepal. This region is also a popular area amongst climbers and mountaineers.

In the 19th century, the mountain was named after a former surveyor-general of India – George Everest. The Nepali name is Sagarmatha and the Tibetan name is Chomolungma.

Indigenous groups live in the mountain valleys, with the most well-known of these being the Sherpa people. The Sherpa people have vast experience of mountain climbing and make great guides for visitors.

 

4. Zhangye Danxia Geopark

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Made of naturally-eroded sandstone these mountains are stunning.

Known as the Rainbow Mountains, this Chinese landscape is a live living painting, with the yellows, reds and oranges blending together to create a truly memorising rainbow effect.

The geological park has a spectacular Danxia (/dan-sshyaa/ “red cloud”) landform area that covers about 19 square miles (50 square kilometres).

The vibrant colours are created by the layering of sedimentary mineral deposits over millions of years. Of course, they make for some impressive pictures!

The area is not just stunningly beautiful though. The landscape has helped to conserve many plants and animals, including sub-tropical broad-leaved evergreen forests, flora and fauna. Critically, around 400 of these species are considered rare or threatened. Therefore this space offers a great preservation site.

Unsurprisingly, the site was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2010.

 

5. Pamukkale

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Travertine pools and terraces in Pamukkale, cotton castle in Denizli.

More than 328 feet (100 metres) in height, Pamukkale is based in southwest Turkey overlooking the city of Denizli, approximately 12 miles (20 kilometres) away.

The name Pamukkale translates from Turkish to “cotton castle”. The name is inspired by the landscape which has cascading pools and turquoise water encircled by limestone walls. This mimics fluffy cotton and so is a great name for such a dream-like landscape!

Infinity pools and spas are simply no match for the natural hot springs that can be found here. In fact, Pamukkale has 17 hot water springs, with temperatures ranging from 35°C (95 °F) to 100 °C (212 °F).

An interesting fact about this location is that shoes are not permitted for visitors. This is to help protect and preserve the location as the calcium deposits are sensitive to erosion.

 

6. Gilgit-Hunza Valley

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Gilgit river flowing through Gupis, surrounded by the Kush mountains in Ghizer, Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan.

The Gilgit-Baltistan region of Pakistan is the northernmost province in Pakistan. It has everything from snow-capped mountains, to rich orchards, to lush meadows and astonishing glaciers. It makes for one striking location!

This includes the beautiful Gilgit River and particularly striking is also the Hunza mountainous valley.

The people from this region are said to have the longest life span in the world. This is often attributed to the water in Hunza valley which is H₂O in its most pure and natural form and has many health benefits.

This area is called the “Blue Zone”, an area where people are known to live long, healthy and vibrant lives.

 

7. Mù Cang Chải

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The rice-terraced fields in Mù Cang Chải, Vietnam.

One of the most unique destinations on this list is the Mù Cang Chải district located in north-eastern Vietnam.

Famous for its terraced rice fields, just looking at this picture we can see just how stunning it is. SubhanAllah – what an incredible effect!

Many people choose to hike in this area to best explore the location. On the trails, you will come across layers of rice terraces, tea and corn plantations, and if you go higher, you enjoy a primary tropical rainforest.

Mù Cang Chải is also home to a vibrant black Hmong culture – a subgroup of one of Vietnam’s largest ethnicities.

Many Hmong homes are dotted around the area. SubhanAllah, their rich culture and traditions are well preserved and can be enjoyed by visitors.

 

8. Antarctica

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The ice caps of Antarctica.

One of the most remote and untouched locations in the world is Antarctica, a place that undeniably has limitless raw natural beauty.

If you visit this location you can expect to see awe-inspiring icebergs, a glass-like ocean, and what’s more, lots of wildlife including penguins.

In fact, there are 17 penguin species found around the globe, but the eight most recognisable reside only on the Antarctic continent and its nearby islands.

More than 56,000 tourists visited Antarctica in 2018/2019, with the number expected to rise to more than double the total from 10 years ago. Of course, visits have also be affected by Covid-19 restrictions

Nonetheless, the increase in the number of tourists visiting Antarctica is worrying seeing as Antarctica is one of the world’s most untouched, conserved locations.

 

9. Victoria Falls

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A rainbow over Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe.

Victoria Falls is a waterfall on the Zambezi River in southern Africa, listed as one of the seven natural wonders of the world.

On the border between Zambia and Zimbabwe, it’s the largest waterfall on earth with this location unrivaled in its beauty.

An astonishing 5577 feet (1700m) wide, Victoria Falls actually consists of four different falls: The Devil’s Cataract, Main Falls, Rainbow Falls and Horseshoe Falls in Zimbabwe, and the Eastern Cataract in Zambia.

In addition to these magnificent waterfalls, the site is home to many animal species and is surrounded by thick forests which add to the beauty of the location.

In fact, African wild dogs, giraffes, waterbucks, bushbucks, impalas and sable antelopes, hippos, crocodiles and 470 species of birds have been recorded in this region.

 

10. The Serengeti

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Zebra at sunset in the Serengeti National Park, Tanzania.

The Serengeti ecosystem is a geographical region in Africa, crossing northern Tanzania.

The name, Serengeti, originates from the Maasai word siringit, which translates to “endless plains.”

Considering the whole area covers 12,000 square miles (30,000 square kilometres), we can’t think of any better name!

No other location touches your soul quite like it. The never-ending grasslands, mesmerising trees and vibrant sunrises and sunsets are truly hypnotic and make for some amazing pictures.

The national parks in the region are home to the famous big five lions, leopards, elephants, rhino, zebra and buffalo, making this the ultimate safari location.

In fact, the Serengeti also boasts the largest mass movement of animals popularly known as the “great migration”. More than 1.7 million wildebeest, 500,000 zebra, and 200,000 antelope migrate from the Ndutu region of the southern Serengeti northward through the entire length of the “endless plains” to Kenya’s Masai Mara, covering a total of 500 miles (800 km).

The animals begin this cyclical journey in March and end it in January the following year. The Great Migration of the Serengeti was also (and not surprisingly!) declared as one of the Seven Natural Wonders of Africa in 2013.

 

SubhanAllah! The Earth is green and beautiful and is the ultimate manifestation of Allah’s glory. And these are just a handful of some of the most beautiful locations across the world amongst many more sources of stunning natural beauty!

However, rather than protecting and preserving these treasures, we’ve polluted the planet, caused mass deforestation and put animals’ futures at risk.

As humans, we have failed in our responsibilities as custodians of the Earth.

We need to recognise that climate change is threatening these landscapes.

This is why Islamic Relief wants you to wake up to the reality of climate change and its consequences on humans and the beautiful landscapes which many other creatures call their home.

The G7 summit is an important opportunity where world leaders will be coming together to discuss priorities and plans to tackle these issues.

As we come out of the global pandemic, we need the climate to be high on the agenda.

That’s why Islamic Relief and a host of other organisations have come together for this event. We’ll be reflecting on the impact of the pandemic, how to rebuild the planet and how to move forward.

Join us in sending a digital message to the presidents and prime ministers ahead of the start of their meeting the next day.

Sign up to our interfaith meeting on 10th June and be part of the action.

SIGN UP TODAY

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