Pamukkale, Turkey / Photo: Vandelizer

How to keep exploring the strangeness of Earth from the comfort of your laptop keyboard.

ONE OF THE THEMES we seem to return to often here at Trips is the total bizarreness (and beauty) of Planet Earth. And it’s not only the editors that find the topic fascinating — these posts are consistently among the most popular on the site.

Last year, Photo Essay: The Most Alien Landscapes on Earth snagged a half million pageviews with its images of Bolivian salt flats, peculiar Socotran vegetation, and weird geologic features from around the world.

Contributor Ross Lee Tabak followed this up with 8 More Strange Places on Planet Earth, introducing little-discussed geographic oddities like Antarctica’s Pole of Inaccessibility and Turkmenistan’s “Door to Hell.”

We learned about the rainbow of sand colors in Photo Essay: 7 Beautifully Bizarre Beaches, and places so inherently dangerous that I had to ask, Would You Live Here?

And the list goes on. If you’re not already familiar with Trips photo essay titles like 18 Natural Wonders of the USA and Iceland’s Fire and Ice, I encourage you to visit Matador’s photo essay focus page for a more comprehensive listing.

Photo: Matthew Fry

Still more

With the growing number of travel writers and photographers out there, and the technological ease with which they can share their explorations of place, I sometimes assume there are no “amazing” destinations I haven’t heard of. That assumption is incorrect.

Just the other day, I came across a post from Aquiziam.com called Ten Strange Places. Yeah, I’d heard of a few of these bizarre natural wonders (mostly in research for the pieces linked above), but several were new to me:

  • The terraced, milk-white mineral pools of Pamukkale, Turkey
  • New Zealand’s “Moeraki Boulders,” the soccer-ball-esque spherical stones that cover Koekohe Beach on the South Island
  • The 16km caldera of Las Cañadas, which is the cap of the volcano that created Tenerife and the rest Spain’s Canary Islands

For more of this list, check out the original post.

What’s the most bizarre place you’ve ever visited? Tell us in the comments.

Community Connection

What you consider “strange” can depend on your state of mind. Explore that idea in Peyote Perception: Searching For Truth In The Mexican Desert.