You Need a Reservation to See This Stunningly Beautiful Tree in Person

Every year, at the end of October, tens of thousands of people flock to a Buddhist temple in China to see a majestic gingko biloba tree shed its foliage and turn the temple compound from green to gold.

The Gu Guanyin Buddhist temple in the Zhongnan Mountains of China’s Shaanxi Province is home to a 1,400-year-old gingko biloba tree that some say was planted for the Tang dynasty (618–907) emperor Li Shimin, one of the greatest rulers in Chinese history. It towers majestically over the temple, and for a few days every autumn, it rains down a gold carpet of leaves that stands out against the muted tones of the season. Because of its striking appearance, it has been called the world’s most beautiful gingko biloba tree, and has become a tourist attraction in it own right.

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Bua Thong Sticky Waterfalls – A Waterfall You Can Climb With Your Bare Feet

Waterfalls are notoriously slippery, so trying to climb them without specialized gear is usually a bad idea, but at the Bua Thong Waterfalls in Thailand’s Chiang Mai province visitors can climb almost vertical falls using only their hands and feet.

The so-called Sticky Waterfalls get their name from the incredibly grippy limestone rocks that the water runs over. They feel like a very hard sponge to the touch and even though they can be described as prickly, you can easily climb them barefoot without hurting yourself. Because no algae or slimes adheres to this callous rock surface, the limestone creates enough friction to prevent slipping, allowing anyone in decent physical shape to climb even the steepest parts of the waterfalls.

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Monster of the Caspian Sea – A Once Glorious Soviet Aircraft Rusting Away on a Beach

Developed during the 1980’s in Soviet Russia, the futuristic looking MD-160 Lun-class ekranoplan had been sitting unused at a Russian naval base since the late 1990’s, but has now been beached on the shores of the Caspian Sea, as part of a plan to turn it into an ocean-side tourist attraction.

Known as the Caspian Sea Monster, the giant ekranoplan was designed in 1975 by Rostislav Evgenievich Alexeyev, a prominent developer of of hydrofoil ships and ground effect vehicles. It used a cushion of air beneath its giant wings to hover at about 13 feet above water, making it hard to detect. It was built as part of the Soviet WIG program, which dated back to the 1960’s Cold War, and was the only Lun-class ekranoplan to ever be completed and equipped with supersonic missiles.

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Would You Spend a Night in This Mountain Cabin Perched on the Side of a Cliff?

La Casa en el Aire (literally ‘The House in the Air’ in Spanish) is a unique hostel perched on a cliff face, about 30 meters above ground, in the Colombian mountains.

Built primarily out of wood and featuring a tin roof, Casa en el Aire is attached to Cerro San Vicente, a monumental rock formation that rises up among the coffee landscape in rural Abejorral, Colombia’s Antioquia region. It is held in place by several steel wires connected to the cliff and supported by a long wooden pole also placed against the cliff. It stands about 20 meters above ground, at an altitude of about 2,500 meters above sea level. It is connected to a more stable-looking cable via a hanging bridge along the cliff face.

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Nekobiyaka – The World’s Only Black Cat Cafe

The Japanese castle town of Himeji is home to the only known black cat café in the world, Nekobiyaka, where you can enjoy a refreshing drink in the company of about a dozen black felines.

There are hundreds of cat cafes all over Japan, but only one dedicated exclusively to black cats. Nekobiyaka opened in 2013 and has since become somewhat of a tourist attraction in Himeji. The owner, Ms. Yagi, came up with idea of a black cat café as a way of increasing the felines’ chances of finding a forever home. As in most places around the world, the rate of adoption for black cats in Japan is significantly lower than for all other colors, and many of them end up euthanized. At Nekobiyaka, visitors get to interact with black felines and discover that the stigma and superstition surrounding them is simply ridiculous.

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The World’s Tallest Hedge Is a Breathtaking Sight to Behold

The Meikleour Beech Hedge, located near the village of Meikleour, in Scotland, measures 30 meters (98 feet) in height, making it the tallest hedge in the world.

Planted in 1745, the Meikleour Beech Hedge now lies alongside the A93 Perth-Blairgowrie Road and can be viewed all year round. It is recognized by the Guinness Book of Records as the highest hedge in the world, and is most impressive to behold during Spring, when the young green leaves reflect the light, as well as in Fall, when the trees turn russet and gold.

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Heat Tourism – People Are Traveling to Death Valley for Selfies with Extreme Thermometer Readings

Heat tourism is a thing, with some people driving thousands of miles to Nevada’s Death Valley for a selfie with the thermometer listing one of the hottest recorded temperatures on Earth.

While most people see extremely high temperatures as a perfect excuse to stay indoors and turn up the air-conditioning, for some it’s a perfect opportunity for a memorable selfie. Last month the Death Valley National Park recorded the hottest temperature ever reliably measured on Earth, and so-called “heat tourists” have been flocking there ever since hoping to snap a picture with the now famous thermometer at Furnace Creek Visitor Center as is shows some of the highest temperatures ever recorded.

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World’s Longest Golf Course Spans 1,365 Kilometers, Takes 5 Days to Complete

There are some long golf courses out there, some covering over 8,000 yards, but they all seem tiny when compared to the world’s longest golf course, which spans a whopping 1,365 kilometers.

Nullabor Links is an 8-hole par-72 golf course that stretches along the Eyre Highway, from Kalgoorlie in Western Australia to Ceduna in South Australia. Legend has it that the course was created to give truck drivers something to do on this remote stretch of road, but according to several sources, it was just a wacky idea born over a few bottles of wine between two golf enthusiasts looking for a way to keep tourists along Eyre Highway in the area for longer. Their concept, to create the world’s longest golf course proved a huge hit, one that continues to grow in popularity.

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The Mysterious ‘Fairy Circles’ of Namibia

Legend says that they are footprints of the gods, others believe that they are UFO landing sights, and scientists have their own theories, but the truth is that no one really knows how the fairy circles dotting the Namib coastal desert came to be.

Fairy circles are uniformly distributed round gaps in arid grassland across the Namib which look like polka dots on fabric when see from the air. Until 2014, they were known to only occur along the Namib Desert in southern Africa, but then almost identical formations were discovered near the mining town of Newman in Western Australia. Still, the fairy circles of Namibia remain the most famous and fascinating to the scientists who have studied them since the 1970’s. Theories about their formation and purpose abounds, but so far no one has been able to prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that theirs is the true answer to this decades-old enigma.

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Indian Resort Turns Luxury Swimming Pool into Fish Pond to Weather Pandemic

The Covid-19 pandemic is forcing tourism businesses to think outside the box in order to stay afloat. Case in point, a Kerala hotel and spa that turned its pristine swimming pool into a fish farm.

The Aveda Resort and Spa in Kumarakom, Kerala had to shut down operations in March, as part of a nationwide coronavirus lockdown, and hasn’t been able to open since. To make sure that its employees have some activity and that the property generates some income to hopefully pay basic bills so it can survive until tourism opens again, management decided to repurpose a 7.5-million-litre swimming pool as a fish pond.

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Pfunds Molkerei – The World’s Most Beautiful Dairy Shop

Imagine walking into the most pompously adorned room at Versailles to buy a piece of cheese or some yogurt. That’s probably the feeling you get when you step into the Pfunds Molkerei, officially the most beautiful dairy shop in the world.

Located at Bautzner Straße 79, in Dresden, Germany, Pfunds Molkerei is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the German city, with over 500,000 tourists stopping by every year. That’s fairly unusual for a dairy shop, but then again, this isn’t your average dairy shop; it has more of a palace vibe, although some say it looks much better than most palace interiors. The whole place is decorated with ceramic tiles produced by Villeroy & Boch and hand-painted in the Neo-Renaissance style by local artists. In 1998, Pfunds Molkerei was awarded the title of “World’s Most Beautiful Dairy Shop” by Guinness Records.

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Natural Phenomenon Causes Remote Nevada Lake to Turn Turquoise

Once every 7 to 10 years, Nevada’s Lake Pyramid experiences an algae boom so significant that its color changes from dark blue to a vibrant turquoise. This phenomenon is known as “whiting”.

Located in a remote desert area of the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribes’ Reservation, about 40 miles northeast of Reno, Lake Pyramid is famous for the whiting events that occur there every decade or so. Over the course of a few weeks, the water turns light blue, turquoise, and, in rare cases, even white. This spontaneous precipitation of calcium carbonate is well documented, but not very well understood. All scientists know is that contributing factors include high water temperatures, algae bloom and increased calcium concentrations. Interestingly, whiting events are not dangerous to the aquatic life. However the same cannot be said for land life, including humans…

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Vietnamese Man Decorates Home With Almost 10,000 Porcelain Dishes

A Vietnamese man obsessed with traditional porcelain dishes and antiques has spent the last 25 years of his life decorating his house with almost 10,000 porcelain bowls, plates and urns.

Nguien Van Truong first fell in love with porcelain antiques in 1986, a year after being discharged from the army and returning to his home village of Kieu Son, in Vietnam’s Vinh Phuc province. He was making a living as a carpenter at a time and got the chance to paint the table and chairs of a local antique collector who first introduced him to the beauty of traditional porcelain dishes. Truong was so impressed that he decided to become a collector himself, and scoured all of Vietnam’s northern provinces in search of traditional porcelain objects, and spent all of his money trying to acquire as much of it as possible.

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The Seneca White Deer – World’s Largest Herd of White Deer

The former Seneca Army Depot in upstate New York is home to a rare herd of white-tailed deer, all of which carry a recessive gene for all-white coats.

The Seneca white deer are not albinos, they are a natural variation of the white-tailed deer, which are usually a brown color. These rare deer are leucistic, meaning they lack pigmentation in the fur, but their eyes are the normal brown color. In the wild, the very visible white coat makes these rare creatures easy targets for both human hunters and predators like coyotes, but this particular herd was protected by a 24-mile (39 km) fence erected around the Seneca Army Depot in 1941. They were isolated inside the depot perimeter and since the military commander there forbade soldiers from shooting the white deer, their number grew into the hundreds.

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This Japanese Building Has a Highway Passing Right Through It

The Gate Tower Building is one of the many several tall office buildings that make up Osaka’s impressive skyline, but there is something about it that makes it unique in the world – it has a functional highway going right through it.

Photos of this architectural anomaly have been doing the rounds on social media for over two decades now, and it’s easy to see why. 16-storey buildings don’t usually have highway off-ramps going right through them, but the Gate Tower Building does, and the traffic doesn’t affect the people working inside it one bit. The elevators are located on the side of the building, and the highway itself doesn’t touch the tower, which is properly insulated against traffic noise and vibrations anyway. It’s still quite a sight to behold, and if you’re ever in Osaka you should definitely pass by, or rather, through.

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