By: Nayeli Medina
Morning Glory Pool, Yellowstone
Morning Glory Pool is a hot spring located in Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming. It is the largest hot spring in the United States and the third largest in the entire world. Morning Glory was originally named Convolutus, Latin for Morning Glory flower, by the wife of the superintendent of the park. The naturally beautiful light blue color is created by bacteria that live in the heated vents of the spring. Due to visitors throwing objects into the pool, the water flow has slowed down. This led to the increase in bacterial growth around the pool which causes the orange and red coloration of the edges, and fading of the once vibrant baby blue. “Socks, bath towels, 76 handkerchiefs, $86.27 in pennies, $8.10 in other coins came up; in all, 112 different objects were removed from Morning Glory” according to Yellowstone Park.
Zhangye Danxia, Southwest China
Zhangye Danxia National Park is located in the southern part of China. These beautiful mountains seem to be a painting on a canvas, leaving visitors in awe as they view these spectacular works of nature. The mountains were formed over 24 million years when minerals layered one by one forming rocks with grandeur coloration. The rocks are a mixture of red gravel, sandstone, and mudstone. The mountains soon formed by the collision of the Indo-Australian and Eurasian tectonic plates, rumpling the landscape and creating the Himalaya mountains as well. The red, yellow, blue and green especially come out after rainfall and during sunset.
Lake Hillier, Australia
Lake Hillier is a lake located on Middle Island in Western Australia. It may look like a big pool of strawberry milk, but sadly it is not. The lake is 600 meters long surrounded by sand and miles of woods full of paperbark and eucalyptus trees. On one side of the lake, vegetation and sand separate it from the Southern Ocean. This is a completely natural made lake whose explanation for the color we have yet to find. Unlike other temporary pink lakes found in other places, Lake Hillier maintains its pink color all year. Some believe it is due to high salinity and bacteria that lives in the salt crusts. The only way to observe this unique bubble gum colored lake is by air. Most pink lakes are not harmful to humans, and there are many that are perfectly accessible for swimming in, just not this one.
Enchanted Well, Brazil
The “Enchanted Well” in Brazil, originally called Chapada Diamantina, is located in the Chapada Diamantina National Park. The Enchanted Well technically is not a well, but contains seemingly magical pools of clear blue water that you cannot find anywhere else. Sunlight pierces through the broken, rigid sedimentary rocks allowing the pools to stand out in a magnificent glow that radiates and gives the caves an entirely new life. These waters are about 60 feet deep, which is hard to tell since the clearness of the water creates the illusion that the ground is much closer than it really is. Interestingly enough, the bones of 40 different extinct species were found in the pool of Chapada Diamantina. Chapada Diamantina also offers great waterfalls and dry caves for anyone to visit.
Great Blue Hole, Gulf of Honduras
The Great Blue Hole is located just a little off the coast of Belize and is one of the largest sinkholes of its type. Identifiable by its dark blue color, and length of 984 ft across and 410 ft in depth, it’s a diver’s paradise. The sinkhole originally began as a limestone cave during the last ice age, but eventually the cave flooded and collapsed as the ocean began to rise. Jacques Cousteau made his dive in 1971 naming it one of the top ten best diving places in the world. Divers now travel to this intricately made tunnel that is said to become much clearer and fascinatingly sculpted as one goes deeper and deeper. What makes the hole far more intriguing is the over 500 rare species of plants and animals that only are found in this particular area. Interestingly enough, the Belize Great Blue Hole is the only blue hole that can be identified from space.