There are many lists of the most beautiful places in the world, but they are usually subjective. British travel company Kuoni recently put science to work to establish an official ranking of the world’s most beautiful travel destinations. The company’s eye-tracking study analyzed the world’s best-known natural wonders. The objective: to rank the most attractive places to the human eye, thus qualifying them as the most beautiful travel destinations in the world.
In the scientific study, participants viewed a series of images of 50 of the world’s most famous natural sites, from the Grand Canyon to the Maldives. The participants’ eye movements were tracked using AI technology, showing which images captured the eye the longest. This eye-catching data was then analyzed to reveal the most beautiful places in the world.
According to the study, the most beautiful place in the world is Peyto Lake in Canada. This natural wonder is known for its neon blue water surrounded by dazzling mountains. The second most beautiful place in the world is Meeru Island in the Maldives, which captivates travelers with its white sands and tropical blue waters.
Other top destinations on the list include the Jurassic Coast in the UK, Yosemite and Lake Tekapo in New Zealand. Read on to see the full list of the world’s most beautiful places.
The 15 most beautiful places in the world
1. Lac Peyto, Canada: In Alberta, Banff National Park is famous for Peyto Lake, which derives its stunning color from the water of the glaciers feeding the lake. “It’s a popular tourist destination for tourists who also want to explore the local mountainous region, with many hikes and impressive road routes,” says Kuoni.
2. Meeru Island, Maldives: This dream destination is only accessible by boat and is home to only one luxury resort with beach and overwater villas. “It’s easy to see why this destination was the most attractive beach, with crystal blue waters and white sand. It really looks like a paradise, ”says Kuoni.
3. Jurassic Coast, United Kingdom: Stretching from Exmouth in East Devon to Studland Bay in Dorset, this 95 mile stretch of coastline is a World Heritage Site with stunning views across the English Channel. “Along the coast you’ll find rocks, pinnacles and arches, including one of England’s most iconic landmarks, Durdle Door,” says Kuoni.
4. Yosemite: Located in the Sierra Nevada Mountains of California, this 750,000-acre national park is known for its giant sequoias, waterfalls and granite cliffs. “With its breathtaking views and spectacular scenery, this place has something for everyone, whether you are looking for challenging hikes or gentle walks through the forest,” says Kuoni.
5. Lake Tekapo, New Zealand: Lake Tekapo is fed by melting snow from the Southern Alps, which gives the water a distinctive turquoise hue. “Lake Tekapo is also one of the sunniest places in New Zealand, averaging 2,400 hours of sunshine per year,” says Kuoni.
6. Niagara Falls: Straddling the Canadian and American borders, Niagara Falls is made up of three different waterfalls that attract 8 million travelers per year. “Most people go into the water to get as close as possible, with boat trips to the base of the falls to fully experience the landmark,” says Kuoni.
7. Mount Snowdon, Wales: Wales’ tallest mountain offers views of Snowdonia, Pembrokeshire, Anglesey and Ireland, drawing thousands of visitors a year. “There are a number of routes to the top of the mountain, with paths suitable for most abilities looking to tackle the climb,” says Kuoni.
8. Puerto Princesa underground river, Philippines: This otherworldly underground river has rich biodiversity and impressive cave systems. “The cave itself features eye-catching rock formations and visitors can experience the beautiful surroundings up close and personal,” says Kuoni.
9. Marble Caves, Chile: In the Patagonian Andes bordering a secluded glacial lake, you’ll find the Marble Caves (also known as Cuevas de Mármol). “The unique geological formation, made of solid marble, has been worn away by water for over 6,200 years, making it one of Mother Nature’s natural beauties,” says Kuoni.
10. El Yunque National Forest, Puerto Rico: With a jungle-like forest, waterfalls, and rivers, El Yunque National Forest spans over 28,000 acres and is home to over 200 species of trees and plants. “It is one of the most popular tourist attractions in [Puerto Rico], with locals and visitors alike exploring the many hiking trails, ”says Kuoni.
11. Aurora Borealis, Iceland: Iceland is one of the best places on the planet to see the Northern Lights, making the country one of the most beautiful places in the world.
12. Iguazu Falls: Located on the Brazil-Argentina-Paraguay border, Iguazu Falls are one of the most amazing natural attractions in the world.
13. Lake Matheson, New Zealand: The view of Mt Cook and Mt Tasman reflected in Lake Matheson in New Zealand helped put this place on the list.
14. Phang Nga Bay, Thailand: Phang Nga Bay is located in Thailand’s Ao Phang Nga National Park and is known for its steep limestone karsts that jut out vertically out of the emerald green water.
15. Grand Canyon: There isn’t much more beautiful than the Grand Canyon, which is larger than the entire state of Rhode Island and is considered by the Hopi tribe as a gateway to the afterlife.
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