30 Pictures To Feed A Fascination With The Natural WorldBy Sachin P
Earth is home to all of our possessions and memories, and it is also full of breathtaking vistas, animals, plants, and scenery to keep us amazed. There are more fantastic and lovely things on this planet than any one person can see in their lifetime, as well as a massive number of riddles still to be solved. Most of the ocean still has never been seen by human eyes!
Given the sheer scale of everything available on Earth, it makes sense that one would want to learn about everything the natural world has to offer. Most people cannot go wrong studying geography when it comes to the essentials. The near-uncountable amount of discoveries that happen on an almost-daily basis is testament enough to the interest that this field engenders. So, sit back, relax with a beverage, and scroll through these images that pay tribute to the wonders of our world.
Sadly, the residents of that one village in Austria have decided to change its name. It’s pronounced “foockeeng” to the intellectually curious out there. They have changed it to Fugging, after giving birth to centuries worth of raunchy jokes. It’ll be sorely missed.
So, if we look at the phonetic roots, the phrase this journey makes is, “Neese foockeeng mem bro.” Sounds like a Glaswegian with tonsilitis on a rainy day. Goes to show that the Scots are supreme at things like this, “this” being “making no sense with pronunciation.”
There are more than simply mountains in the Toblerone emblem. In fact, the artwork skillfully conceals a bear. It pays homage to Bern, the Swiss city where the chocolate business was established. Bern’s coat of arms features what appears to be a bear rising skyward.
That earned Bern the moniker “The City of Bears.” Did you notice the image of the Matterhorn on the Toblerone’s packaging while savoring it? The Swiss Alps cliff, which is a prominent natural formation of Switzerland, is artistically portrayed in the Toblerone emblem.
Well over 3,100 kilometers of Chile’s coastline run along the South Pacific Ocean. Imagine it as a long, vibrant streamer or chili pepper teasing the ocean on South America’s hemline. In actuality, the Andes mountainous region extends the entire extent of Chile.
This makes Chile the longest nation in the world spanning north to south. The indigenous Mapuche term “chilli,” which means “where the land ends,” is considered one of the many etymological sources. It might also be modeled after the Mapuche’s rendition of the bird call, “cheele cheele.”
Mount Fuji is breathtaking from all angles
Mount Fuji is actually a composite volcano that grew bigger as lava and ash accumulated on its summit, Fuji is Japan’s tallest mountain, standing at 12,388 feet. Its beautiful volcanic conical form, which many compare to an overturned fan, makes it distinctive and highly valued for its aesthetics.
Shinto and Buddhism, the two main faiths of Japan, both hold Fuji in high respect. Contrary to numerous other holy peaks, those religions mandate that Fuji be scaled, and each year, tens of thousands of visitors and devout believers alike ascend Mount Fuji.
Traverse Europe within a day!
What do Poland, Paris, London, and Banana have in common? They’re all villages in Kiribati. Stanislaw Peczyski, a Polish adventurer and engineer, helped the people by creating a new irrigation system and educating people on how to operate it. The village of Poland is named after him.
Father Emmanuel Rougier, a French missionary who rented the island and cultivated around 800,000 coconut trees there from 1917 to 1939, lived in the village of Paris, which is abandoned now. The reasons for the name of London (could be due to the British occupation?) and Banana are less clear.
Antarctica means “opposite to the Arctic”
Despite being separate from the other landmasses, Antarctica is linked to the remainder of the world by both oceanic and atmospheric currents. The Southern Ocean, which surrounds the continent of Antarctica, is a major influence on the planet’s marine and atmospheric ecosystems.
About 90% of the ice on Earth is located here, and 70% of all freshwater on Earth is trapped inside the Antarctic ice sheet. If Antactica was to melt entirely, there would be a 58-meter (about 190-foot) rise in the global sea level.
Hrafna-Flóki pulled a little sneaky
According to legend, a Norwegian named Hrafna-Flóki Vilgerarson gave Iceland its name. According to The Book of Settlements, also called Landnáma, Hrafna-Flóki traveled from Norway to Iceland alongside his family and livestock in order to establish a new life. All the livestock perished in Iceland’s first winter.
That incident led him to decide to depart the country. Before leaving, he noticed that the Vatnsfjörur fjord appeared to be completely covered in ice, which led him to give the location the name Iceland. Later, Vilgerarson came back to Iceland, and this time he settled down permanently.
Venice: The “most serene.” As much as you can’t help but mention the beauty of this city, when seen from above, it looks like a big fish swallowing a smaller one. The city’s old graveyard happens to be the rectangular island on the left.
This is where Igor Stravinsky, Ezra Pound as well as other artists are buried. The famed glassmaker’s island, Murano—in which Venetian glass manufacturers were relocated in 1290 after a spate of fires that decimated the town—is just barely visible on the far-left corner.
Horseshoe Bend, Arizona
Around two hundred million years ago, a massive collection of dunes stretching from Arizona to Wyoming blanketed the country, forming the region today known as Horseshoe Bend. Geologists term such regions as “ergs;” the dunes became petrified (turned into stone).
Over time, mineral and water deposits produced a solid, homogeneous slab of sandstone almost 2,000 feet deep in some places. Sedimentary layers settled on top of this reddish Navajo Sandstone’s bedrock after it developed. The picturesque nature of this place warrants a visit.
The border between Idaho and Canada
One of the starkest international borders in the world, visually speaking, is between Canada and the United States. Spanning the Atlantic Ocean to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west, the border stretches 5,525 miles (8,891 kilometers). It passes through villages, glaciers, woodlands, and lakes.
13 American states and eight Canadian provinces border each other. Except in cases of extreme need, a six-foot “no-touching-zone” is enforced along the border. Idaho and British Columbia are connected by a 45-mile (72-km) long border. The border is north of Idaho’s slender northern region between Montana and Washington.
Ayers Rock is often referred to as the Uluru, which is the term the native Pitjantjatjara Aboriginal people used for it until surveyor William Gosse gave it the title Ayers Rock in 1873 in honor of South Australia Chief Secretary Henry Ayers.
The rock is currently owned and administered by the Aboriginal people, who also urge that outsiders refrain from climbing it because of its religious significance. Seeing the rock’s colors change at sunrise and sunset is a breathtaking experience in person.
Map of the landlocked countries of the world
Whenever one or more foreign nations encircle another nation on all sides, the encirclednation is “landlocked.” That is, there is no nearby coastline giving the country accessibility to the oceans. There are 44 landlocked nations and five partially-acknowledged landlocked governments in the world.
North America as well as the continent of Australia are the only continents devoid of any landlocked states. Liechtenstein and Uzbekistan are both landlocked. These are the only two countries that are encircled entirely by other landlocked nations—double landlocked.
Past, present. What of the future?
Numerous Native American tribes—such as the Cheyenne, Arapaho, Kiowa, Ute, Navajo, Apache, Shoshone, Comanche, and Pueblo—once called Colorado home. Inside the state of Colorado, only “the Southern Ute Tribe as well as the Mountain Ute Tribe” are currently legally registered.
Many cities, towns, and counties around the Centennial State have the names of former Coloradoan tribes and chieftains, such as the City of Pueblo, Arapahoe County, as well as the Town of Ouray. We don’t know the exact name of the tribe shown here but the location is in Colorado Springs.
Lost City of Djado, Niger
This city, which was given its contemporary name after the Djado plateau on which it is situated, is of largely unknown origin. A number of the buildings appear to be recognizable and reminiscent of other nearby civilizations. Others remain abandoned; their function is unknown.
These remains, which date back between 800 and 1000 years, were built when this region of the desert was moist and richly forested. We have recently attained some knowledge about those who resided in this area, but the builders still remain largely a mystery.
Before Florida became a part of the United States, the Miccosukee Indians lived there as members of the Creek Nation. The majority of the Miccosukee were ethnically cleansed and forcibly relocated to the West by the US during the 1800s Indian Wars, but around 100 of them stayed put.
Comprising largely of Creeks who spoke Mikasuki, the stragglers refused to give up their territory and secluded themselves in the Everglades. The current members of the tribe, who total over 600, are descended directly from those who managed to escape captivity. The Miccosukee later adapted into smaller groups.
Sail from Chile to Spain!
So, you’re bored. You are well off and have some boating experience; maybe you take your kayak to the Potomac on the weekends. You go on holiday to Spain. Then, an idea strikes you. If you can pull it off, you will become a legend.
Why not sail from Spain to Chile in South America? After all, you have all the qualifications of a guy who calls himself a medical professional after hosing down someone with a heatstroke. Why not? Straight line, right? The boats practically navigate themselves, right? What can possibly go wrong?
Remember the Four Corners Monument from Breaking Bad? Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, and Colorado converge at this special memorial, the only location of its kind in the United States. Put an appendage in each location, and you’ve accomplished your goal of visiting all four states.
The memorial, which is under the management of the Navajo National Department of Park and Recreation, is a beautiful location for pictures, but it can be difficult to get there. This alternative isn’t four corners per se, but it still manages to cover 5 states! Impressive.
The red area holds 40% of the Greek population
Greece’s capital city, Athens, has a population of over 650,000. Including Athens’ larger urban region raises this number to over three million. The city, which is also the southernmost capital of the European peninsula, is a substantial economic hub in southeastern Europe.
Thessaloniki is the second-largest city in Greece, and its metropolitan area is home to over a million people. Due to its well-known events and a broad array of cultural activities, it is recognized as the cultural center of Greece. No wonder the population is dense in these areas.
Empire state of mind indeed!
New York is the nation’s most populous city, with 8,550,405 residents as of July 2015—more than twice the population of Los Angeles, which is ranked second. In fact, New York City is the home of around one out of every 38 US citizens.
With almost 27,000 individuals per square mile, New York City also has one of the highest population densities out of any major American metropolis. Over three million people call New York City home; more than one-fourth were born overseas and immigrated in the year 2000 or later.
We need a new perspective
Our use of the same world map since kindergarten is pretty weird when you think about it. There isn’t really a “standard” way to look at the world; we’ve invented that. Even though the Mercator projection map is indeed the most commonly used, it is horribly inaccurate.
Given that it is impossible to flatten the world (a rough sphere) accurately into a two-dimensional rectangle, regions including Greenland, Antarctica, and Africa all are seriously distorted on classic Mercator projections. Seeing the entire Mercator map of the world backward reveals the extent that the proportions are off.
Quebecois loves a dip
Residents in several Quebec suburbs simply need to glance over the fence to confirm this one for us: A neighboring backyard pool is typically the norm for them. The prevalence of backyard swimming pools is unparalleled outside of Quebec. Why vacay when you can stay-cay?
The closest areas of comparison are the hottest regions of the southern United States, but then even California does not really compare to the province in terms of pool coverage. Quebecois have historically tended to remain indoors more frequently than most throughout their brief, hot and humid summers.
The exact geographic point of the North Pole, the Marker at 90 degrees North
Why would Father Christmas reside and operate at the harsh and distant North Pole among all of the locations across the globe? Thomas Nast created a famous advertisement for Harper’s Weekly in 1863 that featured Santa Claus bringing presents to Union Army troops.
Nast continued to create annual Christmas illustrations, one of which showed a letter to Santa Claus written to the North Pole. There you go—one cartoonist’s imagination was powerful enough to change the perception of generations of young children to come.
Hout Bay, Western Cape, South Africa
Imagine a former fishing village by the ocean, with luxuriant green trees and the majestic Cape Mountains towering in the background. The very first Dutch governor, a nobleman by the name of Jan van Riebeeck, gave the region the moniker Hout Bay in 1652.
On their voyage to India, the Dutch first inhabited the Cape in the 17th century. The title translates directly to “Wood Bay,” as seen by the numerous, still-existing, beautiful green trees. Words can’t properly describe how beautiful this looks on a sunny day.
Pluto is smaller than Russia. In Moscow, Putin smiles.
Pluto was recognized as the solar system’s ninth planet for more than 75 years following its identification in the year 1930; it was a far-off and icy oddity, to be sure, but it was still a part of Earth’s close family.
In 2006, Pluto was reclassified by the International Astronomical Union (IAU) as a “dwarf planet,” a newly established classification that was made to distinguish Pluto from the other eight “real” planets. We remember how the papers reported the news back then.
Borders among Nepal, India, and Bangladesh
Mountain ranges, river systems, oceans, waterfalls, and plains are examples of natural boundaries. Natural barriers can occasionally create borders between nations or governments. Landscape borders are artificial rather than natural; however, they can nevertheless take the appearance of peaks, lakes, and woods.
By altering the natural geography of the border region, establishing a landscape border—which is typically done to demarcate treaty-designated political boundaries between nations—artificially reshapes nature. Natural borders have historically been advantageous from a strategic standpoint due to their simplicity of defense.
This is a beautiful example of something called a fingering instability (or Staffman-Taylor instability). It happens with two immiscible fluids (they don’t mix, like water and oil) when the less viscous displaces the other one. This phenomenon is common in drainage in soils.
Here, the less viscous water slowly displaces the more viscous soil; in this case, sand. The tree branch-like impressions seem to have a name as well. They are called Lichtenberg figures, which is also the name for the designs you get when you send an electric current through a piece of wood.
The power of the kings, so to speak
The global language in business, trade, academia, and numerous other important fields is English. Even within diplomacy, where French historically had the sway, English now predominates in the majority of the world’s areas. A language “becomes a global language because of the strength of the individuals who speak it”.
Such is the view, according to eminent linguist David Crystal, that the British Empire’s growth was one of the primary military and political causes that contributed to English “power.” Later, English’s impact was further expanded by its role as the vernacular of the scientific, industrial, financial, and economic revolutions.
Spread of towns called Torre, in Italy
Torre is the Italian word for “tower.” This might explain why most of the towns named Torre have a tower. Seems like we are stating the obvious as usual here, but, like in most cases, that could be the case here.
Another theory has to do with the existence of fortresses and defensive structures. Due to frequent invasions by north African pirates during the medieval ages, it was customary practice to construct observation towers, which were occasionally named after neighboring villages, along the coastlines.
Cultural zones of the United States of America
The United States is a very diversified multicultural nation. Colin Woodward makes the claim that the United States is really 11 distinct nations, split across clear cultural divides that date all the way to the 16th century, in his work “American Nations: A History of the Eleven Rival Regional Cultures of North America”.
In this map here, though, we can see some other areas as well, namely the Pacific Southwest, Cascadia, California coast, Rocky Mountains, Prairies, Great Lakes, the Deep South, Ohio River Valley, Appalachia, Southern Florida, New York, and the transition zones among them.
Spot the similarities!
Venezuela is 1,297 percent bigger than Lithuania. However, there are 2.7 million people living in Lithuania (25.9 million more people live in Venezuela). But when you scale the countries so that they are geographically the same size, the shape looks quite similar.
There might be a slight similarity when it comes to the overall shape but that is where the purported similarity meets its end. The difference in size is just staggering. Same thing when comparing Brazil with the continent of Africa. Mind you, there are people who refer to Africa as a country!