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The Most Amazing Natural Wonders Of The United States

The United States is a country full of awe-inspiring natural wonders. Offering travelers an incredible variety of diverse and inspiring landscapes, breathtaking locations, and powerful panoramas, America truly is the land of dreams.

A land offering “a thousand shades of something new”, it’s true beauty lies beyond the famed city skyscrapers, landmarks, and monuments, and outside of the city limits. America’s true beauty lies in it’s abundance of National Parks, preserves and protected wildlife sanctuaries.

Here are the top natural wonders in this extraordinarily beautiful country. Add them to your bucket list to truly Discover America.

Grand Canyon, Arizona

 

The Grand Canyon is one of the world’s most powerful and inspiring landscapes. It’s immense size is overwhelming, and the opportunity to stand on the rim of this vast canyon is without a doubt one of the most phenomenal encounters with nature.

Formed over 16 million years, the Grand Canyon is on average 4,000 feet deep across 277 miles. At it’s deepest point it is 6,000 feet deep, and 15 miles at it’s widest.

Arches National Park, Utah

 

Arches National Park

Pictured above, Delicate Arch (Arches National Park) is 52 feet tall. But rather than the height, it is the absolute improbability of the structure which is most impressive. Formed over many, many periods of time, the arch is sculpted from distinctive red sandstone which covers the five national parks across Southern Utah.

Collectively these parks (Zion, Bryce Canyon, Arches, Canyonlands, and Capitol Reef) are made up of thousands of natural arches, immense and impressive canyons, and “towering buttes and rock faces that have become a nation’s sacred natural treasures.”

Acadia National Park, Maine

 

Acadia National Park, Maine. Photo by Rachel Campbell of Treepot Travels.

Heading to New York? Rent a car and drive to the rugged coast of Maine. Acadia National Park is one with awe-inspiring natural beauty, and absolutely stunning scenery.

Visitors can hike granite peaks, bike along the craggy coastline, and marvel at the expansive views from the top of Cadillac Mountain – the highest point along the North Atlantic seaboard, and the first place to view sunrise in the United States from early October through until early March.

Death Valley, Nevada

 

Death Valley. Photo by

Death Valley. Photo by Tom Babich

Both the lowest and hottest location in North America, this spectacular basin, 282 feet below sea level, is a combination of the hottest, driest, and lowest points in the country.

Considered to be one of the hottest places on earth, Death Valley is a harsh, but incredibly beautiful landscape, and one where the scorching desert appears endless. The highest recorded temperature here has been 134 degrees Fahrenheit.

This is an easy detour during a road trip from Los Angeles to Las Vegas.

The Everglades, Florida

 

The Florida Everglades

Often referred to as the “amazon of North America”, the Florida Everglades are a natural region of tropical wetlands in South Florida, and provide an important habitat for a number of rare and endangered species like the manatee, Florida panther and Florida Black Bear.  It is the only place on earth where alligators and crocodiles co-exist, and the only place on earth which boasts more that 40 different species of rare orchid flowers.

The Everglades are completely wild and unpopulated.  Dominated by grassland and swamp, dotted with tree islands, forests and rivers, the whole area has a very wild beauty about it, and is a perfect example of what “old Florida” used to look like before development began.

You will never find a more unique location which boast a more unique range of wildlife anywhere else in the world.

Redwood Forest, California

California’s redwood forest is home to the tallest trees on Earth. And while the redwoods rule the forest, also protected by the National Parks Service are the vast prairies, oak woodlands, wild rivers, and nearly 40 miles of wild, rugged Pacific Ocean coastline.

The redwoods have been known to reach heights of over 370 feet (113 m), and average a lifespan of 500 to 700 years. The location of the tallest, a 379-foot Hyperion, is a secret very few are privy to in an attempt to keep tourists away.

Yosemite Valley, California

Yosemite Valley. Photo by

Yosemite Valley. Photo by Edward Stojakovic

With glaciers reaching back over 30 million years, ten waterfalls over 500 feet, yellow pine and oak forests and open meadows on the valley floor, Yosemite Valley is one of the most beautiful, and most photographed, places on earth.

Enchanting and majestic, this magnificent panorama includes El Capitan, “the world’s largest monolith of exposed granite; the distinctive Half Dome granite formation; and Yosemite Falls, the tallest waterfall in North America, measuring 2,425 feet from top to bottom.”

Denali, Alaska

 

Denali, Alaska. Photo by

Denali, Alaska. Photo by Kevin and Kelli Redington

“Denali is six million acres of wild land in the heart of central Alaska, bisected by one ribbon of road that takes visitors into the Denali National Park and Preserve.

Travelers along it see the relatively low-elevation taiga forest give way to high alpine tundra and snowy mountains, culminating in North America’s tallest peak, 20,320 foot-high Mount McKinley. Wild animals large and small roam unfenced lands, living as they have for ages. Solitude, tranquility and wilderness abound.” (Source: National Park Service)

Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

Yellow

Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming. Photo by Steve Tulk

America’s first, and most spectacular national park, Yellowstone is home to a giant super volcano which still simmers to this day. Most of the world’s geysers are located here, with an unrivalled concentration of geysers, mudpots, fumaroles and hot springs.

Also home to an abundance of wildlife including grizzly bears, wolves, and herds of bison and elk, Yellowstone is famous not only for its natural beauty, but also for its presence of wildlife.

Visitors are met with a range of recreational opportunities, including hiking, camping, boating, fishing and exploration. Paved pathways lead to the major attractions, as well as a number of lakes and waterfalls.

Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii

Volcano National Park, Hawaii. Photo by

Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii. Photo by Colleen McNeil

Hawaii’s volcanic landscape is still very prevalent to this day.  Visitors to Hawaii’s Volcanoes National Park who have the opportunity to explore the crater-filled landscape feel like they are walking on the moon.

Niagara Falls, New York

 

Niagara Falls. Photo by

Niagara Falls. Photo by Flickr User Prayitno

One of the world’s most recognizable and famous natural wonders, Niagara is America’s largest waterfall. Sharing the border with Canada, six million cubic feet of water cascades over the crest every minute: the largest water flow in the world.

Niagara is made up of three separate falls, and plays host to 22.5 million visitors annually. This postcard perfect spectacle is truly one not to be missed.

 About Megan Claire

Megan is an Australian Journalist who has been travelling and blogging around the world for the last 7 years to inspire others to embark on their own worldwide adventure!  Her husband Mike is an American travel photographer, and together they have made the world their home.

Follow their journey on FacebookGoogle+ and Twitter.

This is a sponsored post but opinions are my own.

    32 Comments

  1. Acadia National Park is an amazing experience that everyone should have at least once in their life! Also can’t wait to check out Yellowstone and the Redwood Forests!

    • We love Acadia too! Gorgeous, but when we were there it was freezing. We’d love to go back and spend more time when it’s a little warmer!

    • We’ll be heading through Maine again in June this year, thankfully it will be summer, so looking forward to throwing the bikes in the car and biking around Acadia. Maybe we’ll bump into you!

  2. ah this makes me really miss my homeland! ive seen most of these, but there are some (ahem denali) that i really need to check out in the near future :)

    • One of my bucket list items is to drive the Great Alaskan Highway – you should totally do a roadtrip to Denali! Although I’m tossing up between a roadtrip and a cruise – may as well do both and be done with it :D!

  3. Sadly I have not visited any of these except Niagara Falls. I’m hoping to make it to Denali this year.

    • Sounds like a lot of people are hitting up Denali this year – group trip!

  4. We live in a truly beautiful country. Yosemite has always and will always be my favorite place to be. I cannot wait to go back

    • You could spend years exploring America and still not have seen everything the country has to offer! We have two road trips planned for this year which will hopefully take us around the main sites and cross off those which remain on our bucket list!

      I hope you get to go back to Yosemite soon! Look forward to the pics :)

  5. I have been to 7. Now I have to check off the rest :) I really need to go to Hawaii!

    • Make 2014 your year! Hawaii is absolutely amazing – you’ll have a blast…hopefully not literally if you’re visiting the Volcanoes National Park though :S!!!

  6. I’m curious why you wrote Natural Wonders of North America, yet didn’t include any from Canada.
    Canada has the majority of the natural wonders in North America (in my opinion).

    • Hi Emily – I focused this post on the United States only; potentially should have re thought the title so to be more technically correct :)

      Although Niagara is technically in Canada if that counts!

      We are yet to travel to Canada, but looking forward to taking a number of road trips later in the year, so I’m sure there will be many blog posts to come!

      Thanks for stopping by.

    • I changed the title of the piece :D!! Started to feel the heat of Canadian pride!!

  7. Never made it to North America, but I really hope to make one of my dreams come true and finally explore it! Without a doubt, Arches National Park in Utah is my favourite spot! So beautiful and stunning !

    • Arches National Park is a good one! I hope you eventually get the chance to travel here – you’ll adore the United States – so different to Europe…although I do absolutely love Europe as well!

    • Thanks Shaun! A few people today have pulled me up on the title, so I’ve just changed it … my bad!!

      Can’t wait to travel to Canada – I’m sure there will be enough natural wonders to fill a whole blog post and more!!

  8. Some great picks but I’d have to add White Sand in New Mexico. Love that place!

    • Hadn’t actually come across White Sand before – will check it out; thanks for the tip!! We’re doing a road trip across through new Mexico later in the year so will add it into our itinerary :)

  9. What a great list! I’ve visited every one of them and love them all! Beautiful!

    • Congrats on having completed the list! Awesome achievement :)

  10. I’ve been to all but three. The nice thing about a list like this is its personal and interchangeable. You could add the Appalachian Trail, Blue Ridge Mountains, high desert, Zion, Mount Ranier, Glacier Bay, Saguaro country…

    • Definitely interchangeable! We can’t wait to get to the Appalachian Trail, and we absolutely LOVED the Blue Ridge Parkway – some of the most stunning scenery around that area! I’ll have to check out your other suggestions – thanks!

  11. They all look absolutely stunning!

    • And these are just those which I could fit into the list! Can’t wait to explore the rest of the country!!

  12. Terrific list of of natural wonders in the US! Denali and the Redwoods are top of our list to visit next.

    • You’ll have an amazing trip! I may just tag along lol :)

  13. I’ve only been to one on this list, sadly-Niagara Falls. I’d love to make it out to the rest soon though! :)

    • You really could just spend whole years exploring everything the US has to offer!! Safe travels!

  14. I live in the US and I have not been to most of these places. Acadia is beautiful! I was listening to a podcast you were in a few weeks back and you mentioned you wanted to focus on traveling in your home country because you had not seen a lot there. I should consider doing the same!

    • Absolutely Mary! I’ve found that we’re always so eager to jump on a plane to the other side of the globe, but in doing so miss out on what we’ve got at home first. I finally figured out that people come to visit my hometown from all over the world, so I should totally take advantage of actually living here :)

      Hope you manage to make it to some of these natural wonders – Acadia in particular is definitely a spectacular spot :)

      Happy travels!

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