1. Avenue du Baobab, Madagascar
Madagascar is known for these strange, alien groves of giant baobabs. Find them on the road between Morondava and Belon’i Tsiribihina, in the west of the country.
2. Wisteria “trees”
Technically, wisteria is a type of flowering vine. But there are several growing in Japan that are decades or even centuries old and have been sculpted into fantastical wisteria-scapes that are as large as any tree.
3. Rainbow eucalyptus
The rainbow eucalyptus is found mostly in the Pacific Islands (the one in the first shot above is from Kauai). The strange coloration happens when the surface layer of bark falls off. The bark underneath starts off brown and then changes colors over time, giving the tree its rainbow effect.
4. Dragon’s blood trees, Socotra Island
Found on the Socotra Archipelago in the Indian Ocean (part of Yemen’s territory), dragon’s blood trees get their name from their red sap
5. Bamboo forests
Bamboo is another plant that technically isn’t a tree (it’s a grass), but when you’re walking through a dense forest like those above, what’s the difference? Sagano Bamboo Forest (seen in the first two photos) near Kyoto, Japan, is the most famous, but you can also find them in places like Hawaii (third photo).
6. Angel oak tree, South Carolina
The famous Angel Oak tree — named not after the fact that it looks like Guillermo del Toro’s conception of the Angel of Death from Hellboy 2, but after its owners’ surname — is around 1,500 years old, growing just outside of Charleston.
7. Giant sequoias, California
Sequoia National Park in California is home to the largest trees in the world, by volume. Pictured above is General Sherman.
8. Beech tree tunnel, Northern Ireland
This tunnel of beech trees in County Antrim, Northern Ireland, was planted back in the 18th century by a man who was trying to impress people coming up to his home at the end of the road. The tunnel is referred to as the “Dark Hedges,” which doesn’t at all make it sound like a place where leprechauns would steal your baby.
9. Dead Vlei trees, Namibia
The white clay pan of Dead Vlei is located in the Namib Desert. It once lay in the floodplain of the Tsauchab River, but when the water vanished as a result of climatic change, so did the trees’ ability to survive. They exist now as skeletons, backdropped by immense orange sand dunes.
10. Blossoming cherry trees
From the German city of Bonn, to the grounds of the Imperial Palace in Tokyo, to DC’s Tidal Basin, cherry blossoms mark the arrival of spring.
11. California’s redwoods
The tallest trees in the world, coast redwoods, grow within a narrow sliver of land on the California coast, from just south of the Bay Area up to the border with Oregon.