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10 Most Beautiful Habitats in the Universe

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10 Most Beautiful Habitats in the Universe

When you think of a vacation, it’s not all about simply getting away from work for a few days. Location is really important because where you go will determine what you do. Or maybe you just want to see a variety of beautiful places while you travel. Whether it’s beaches to lay on or mountains to climb, there are many gorgeous options. In fact, there are so many options that it can be overwhelming. However, here you’ll find ten places to start and get a look at some of the most beautiful habitats.

1. The Rainbow Mountains of Zhangye Danxia, China

As colorful as they are massive, the Rainbow Mountains get their color from the natural process of erosion. The weathering is caused by strong winds over a long time, and reveal the mix of the sandstone’s colors. You can stroll among the reds, yellows, and greens and feel like you’re in a wonderland.

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2. Ko Thao, Thailand

Called “Turtle Island” because of its shape, this gorgeous, super laid-back destination offers clear blue waters and a variety of activities. You can relax on a few different beaches. One of the main draws for this island is the diving, and many visitors go scuba diving and get certified here. Before you arrive on this pristine beach, see if you can find some local scuba classes just for practice.

3. Neuschwanstein, Germany

This is truly a fairytale destination. This German castle was the inspiration for Sleeping Beauty’s castle. It has a few peaks and is surrounded by a storybook setting of tall trees and even taller mountains. It stands as a symbol of peace and is visited primarily in the summer (though when it’s covered with snow in winter is when it really has that classic look).

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4. Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia

This is the world’s largest salt flat, and offers a truly surreal experience. When covered in water, the entire surface becomes a giant reflective mirror. The sky and ground meet in an almost magical way.

5. Havasu Falls, Arizona

Practically hidden, these remote falls can be found in a canyon in Arizona. There is also an isolated community of Native Americans that make this popular tourist choice their home. The waterfalls are gorgeous and flow into gorgeous blues and greens. To find it, there’s a mild hike (close to ten miles) but it’s definitely worth it for a dip in the water.

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6. Maldives, Lakshadweep, Indian Ocean

The Maldives have gained popularity as a destination choice. The waters are clear blue and calm, so it’s great for diving. There are quite a few exotic creatures that reside here, like manta rays, whale sharks, and sea turtles. This is also home to the largest atoll (a ring-shaped reef). Diving sessions are offered here throughout the entire year.

7. Grand Prismatic Spring, Wyoming

You’ll find this natural wonder in Yellowstone National Park. It’s the biggest hot spring in the United States. The spring is shaped like a ring and shows off a variety of colors, all bright and stunning.

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8. Galapagos Islands, Ecuador

The Galapagos Islands is a great choice because of the variety of wildlife that live there. There are some animals that don’t live anywhere else on the planet so you’ll be able to see the rarest of creatures. This is also a great selection for snorkeling, as there are a few nearly perfect places to get into the water.

9. Whitehaven Beach, Australia

As you could probably guess from the name, Whitehaven Beach is popular and recognized for its white sandy beaches. The white sand reflects beautifully with the tropical mix of blue and green waters. The only way to get to this destination is by taking a boat from a mainland port, like Hamilton Island or Shute Harbor. You’ll find that it’s one of the cleanest and most well-kept beaches, and there’s a reason behind that. There are no dogs or smoking allowed in this paradise.

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10. Keukenhof Park, Holland, The Netherlands

Another great and colorful option is Keukenhof Park. This park is famous for its many rows of tulips. The best time to view the flowers in bloom is mid-April. The rows are neatly planted and the colors change with each row. It’s a truly beautiful location.

Featured photo credit: LIOglobal via pixabay.com

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Sasha Brown

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Last Updated on November 22, 2021

Thanksgiving: It’s About The Simple Things

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Thanksgiving: It’s About The Simple Things

Thanksgiving, a day of pure gluttony, football, and possible uncomfortable situations with family members that you may or may not like. Oh, yeah, and the whole “know and reflect on what it is to be thankful and grateful.”

During the holiday season many people forget what this time of year is bout and are too worried about getting the “early-bird” deals on Black Friday and making sure that they have the perfect gifts for their loved ones. I am sort of a “Grinch” when it comes to the holiday season, mostly because of that mentality by many of the poeple around me.

But instead of being grinch-like this holiday season, I decided to simplify things and get back to what this time of year is actually is about; being thankful for what I have and what I can give.

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Simplify

I’m not a “minimalist” in any real sense, but in the last few months the talks of Patrick Rhone and others have got me to rethink my stance. Can you really have too much stuff?

Absolutely.

And with all that stuff comes the burden and the weight of it on your back.

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If you feel that the things around you are out of control, maybe it’s time to simplify and be thankful and grateful for what you have and use. Here are a few things that you can do to simplify:

  • You know those gadgets in the drawer that you said you were going to sell? Well, time to get the listing on eBay and sell them. Or, send them to a place like Gazelle. Even if they are old and won’t get money, you can at least recycle them.
  • Get rid of things you don’t need. Like old books, clothes, tools, etc. Have something that’s been laying around forever with no use? Donate it to a charity or church. If you aren’t using it, someone else could be.
  • Find your productivity tools and stick with them. Use tools and gadgets that serve multiple purposes so you can simplify your tool set.

Be Mindful

You don’t have to be a master Buddhist or meditator to be mindful (although, it can definitely help). Being mindful comes down to being cognizant of the present and not keeping yourself in the past or future. It’s about living in the moment and being aware of yourself and everything around you. It’s just being.

Without getting too “California” on you, it is super important to be mindful during the holiday rush. Rather than worrying about the things that you forgot at your house on the way to relatives or thinking about the next stop in your endless holiday travels, just breath and think about what you are currently doing.

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Spend the time with your family and friends and don’t crush the moment. Try not to concentrate so hard on getting the perfect photo of the “awesome moment” of the day and actually miss the awesome moment.

Being mindful over the holidays will help you be with your families, friends, and yourself allowing you to enjoy your time.

Reflect

As the year is coming to a close (yes, it really is that close!) it’s a great time to start reflecting on what you have accomplished and what you haven’t. Within the next few weeks we will have a more throrough reflection article here at Lifehack.org, but reflecting every now and then over your holiday break is a great way to see where you have been doing well in your life and where you need to improve.

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Reflection shouldn’t be used to “get down” on yourself. Reflection should be used to take an honset inventory of what you have accomplished, how you handeled situations, and what you can do better. If you journal everyday (a daily form of reflection) it may be a good time to start going over some of the things that you have written and start to put together a year’s end journal entry. I mean, how else will you write your autobiography?

But, seriously, reflecting on yourself makes you aware of your successes and faults and helps you plan and make goals for the coming year. It makes you a better person.

So, while you are stuffing your face with bird, stuffing, and mashed taters’, remember that the holidays are much more than the superficial things. Use this holiday to become a better person.

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Featured photo credit: Libby Penner via unsplash.com

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