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09 July, 2012

7 Beautiful Canyons around the World

Canyons are also called as gorges; these are formed due to long time erosions of rivers. One can spot canyons in dry or parched areas as physical weathering conditions play a major role in the formation of canyons. The canyon walls are in general formed of resistant granite or sandstone. When talking about canyons one can never forget the “Grand Canyon” in Arizona; however, we are going to take a look at equally beautiful canyons around the world other than Grand Canyon.

7. Matka Canyon, Skopje, Macedonia

Matka Canyon, popular tourist destination in Macedonia

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Matka (means womb) Canyon is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Macedonia. It is a home for 10 caves and the length of the caves vary between 20 meters to 176 meters. According to New7Wonders of Nature project, Vrelo Cave in Matka is one among the top 77 natural sites. There are lots of monasteries in Matka Canyon. One can spot lots of butterflies and bats at Matka Canyon; it is home for nearly 77 endemic butterfly species. This is one of the best spots for alpine hiking, kayaking, fishing and swimming; the best season is between April and November.

6. Kings Canyon, Northern Territory, Australia

Kings Canyon, Australia
Kings Canyon forms a part of Watarrka National Park in Australia and is a popular tourist destination for adventurous hikers or travelers. This is also a best place to watch rare and beautiful looking birds like Spinifex pigeon, black-breasted buzzard, dusky grasswren, etc. There are two walks in Kings Canyon; one walk takes you to the bottom of the canyon and the other to the top of the canyon. It is at the top walk that one finds “Heartbreak hill” that offers spectacular and scenic views of the entire landscape, a permanent waterhole, and sandstone domes; remember this is too steep and hence called the “Heartbreak Hill” or “Heart attack Hill.”

5. Charyn Canyon, Almaty, Kazakhstan

Charyn Canyon, best place to watch unusually shaped rock formations

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Charyn Canyon is located in Charyn River and is a part of Charyn National Park in Kazakshtan. This is the best place to watch unusual and oddly shaped rock formations; this is the reason why one part of it is also called as “Valley of Castles.” It resembles “Grand Canyon” in many ways even though it is much smaller in size; it is nicknamed “the little brother of Grand Canyon.”

4. Blyde River Canyon, Mpumalanga, South Africa

Blyde River Canyon, Second largest canyon in Africa

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Blyde (means happy or glad) River Canyon is believed to be the world’s largest green canyon as one can witness lush green scenery everywhere around the canyon and Africa’s second largest canyon. Due to the lush subtropical foliage, it is home for many species of birds, antelopes and fishes. Some of the bird species include the beautiful Narina Trogon, Bald Ibis, Green Twinspot, Wood Owl, Jackal Buzzard, etc. This is a most sought tourist spot or attraction in Mpumalanga.

3. Colca Canyon, Arequipa, Peru

Colca Canyon during winter

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Colca Canyon is believed to be the deepest canyon in the world and is the third most popular tourist destination in Peru. To watch the near threatened Andean Condor species, one must go to Cruz del Condor, which is nearly 3,960 feet below the canyon’s rim. One can also watch lots of other bird species like Giant Colibri, Andean goose, vicuna, etc. There are lots of other things one can do at Colca Canyon other than bird watching; this includes taking a dip in the hot springs, hiking, trekking, mountaineering, visiting archeological sites, etc.

2. Fish River Canyon, Namibia, Africa

Fish River Canyon during early morning
Fish River Canyon is the world’s second largest and the largest in Africa. This is one of the most sought after tourist attraction in Namibia. This is one of the best mountaineering spots, but the sad part is that hikers have to sleep outdoors during their trekking. The best time for hiking is between May and mid-September as hiking is prohibited in the summer season owing to very high temperatures.

1.Yarlung Tsangpo Grand Canyon, Tibet, China

Yarlung Tsangpo Grand Canyon, the deepest and the largest canyon in the world

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Yarlung Tsangpo Grand Canyon is considered the deepest and the largest canyon in the world. Yarlung Tsangpo Grand Canyon is place for unique plants, bird species and is home for King Cobra. Some of the unique species include Ice Mouse, Ice Flea, etc. This boasts of rich biological resources, spectacular scenery and a popular eco-tourism spot. It is a best spot for whitewater kayaking.


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