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Space Landscapes on Earth

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By common opinion, the era of space tourism is approaching. However, in anticipation of a still unseasonable time, when people can fly to other planets without special training, it makes sense to pay attention to some amazing corners of our Earth.

Космические пейзажи на Земле

The nature of some of them is so unique that one can not help thinking about its extraterrestrial origin. Such "space landscapes" have long been used for filming fantasy films, a recent example is the acclaimed "Martian", but for most tourists they remain unknown. We will try to fill this gap by publishing here a few photos with "unearthly landscapes".

The Atacama Desert (Chile)

Пустыня Атакама (Чили)

This most arid and completely unusable territory of the Earth, they say, inspires optimism in scientists looking for life on other planets. After all, in Atacama, with its 50 millimeters of precipitation a year, there is still life! Lean vegetation - rare cacti, mosses, lichens, nevertheless, makes it possible to exist a fairly diverse local fauna. In Atakama there live vicuna (a kind of lama), vizyaci (chinchilla with long tails), and 120 (!) Species of wild birds. If you can live here ....


The Beacon Valley (Antarctica)

Долина Бикон (Антарктида)

To remove the "Martian" in the valley of Beacon for some reason did not. And in vain - in the local landscape prevails dark reddish tones, and the natural conditions in the valley, according to astrobiologists, are the closest to the Martian. Natural moisture is absent completely, as, by the way, and on Mars - only the ice. However, even here in 2007, scientists managed to find strains of bacteria in the Beacon Valley and even, despite their more than a respectable age (eight million years!), To bring them back to life! Mars, as they say, not everything is lost!


Vale de Loy (Brazil)

Вале де Луа (Бразилия)

In the Valais de Lua National Park you can see the most ancient rocks on Earth - they are about two billion years old! On our planet, not only is there nothing older than them, but nothing that so little resembles an ordinary, terrestrial mountain landscape. The quaint, fantastic form of rocks and boulders is the result of the impact of precipitation, winds and various natural disasters. Paleontologists often find here the remains of extinct prehistoric animals. They lived in these rocks when the rocks were already very old!


The valleys of McMurdo (Antarctica)

Долины Мак-Мердо (Антарктида)

The dry valleys of McMurdo are not only one of the driest places on our planet, but also one of the most paradoxical. Here, on the territory of the Antarctic continent, there is absolutely no ice, and it was not, according to scientists, eight million years! From the mountain peaks constantly blowing the strongest on Earth winds, speeds of up to 320 kilometers per hour. They blow out all the moisture, and precipitation, in any form, simply does not happen. This is so close to the Martian conditions that NASA even conducted the tests of its "Vikings" - descent spacecrafts in McMurdo.


Wadi Rum Desert (Jordan)

Пустыня Вади Рам (Иордания)

The surface of Mars, as we imagine it from movies and illustrations to fantastic novels, looks something like the Jordanian desert of Wadi Rum. Lifeless sands, unnaturally picturesque rocks with canyons and arches. It is no coincidence that Wadi Rum is so fond of filmmakers - except for the already mentioned "Martian", here both "Prometheus", and "Lawrence of Arabia", and "Transformers" were filmed ....


Socotra Archipelago (Yemen)

Архипелаг Сокотра (Йемен)

The Socotra archipelago in the Indian Ocean, which belongs to the Republic of Yemen, is known not only for its original culture, which goes back to the ancient cultures of South Arabia. Here the gaze of the traveler opens truly unearthly landscapes. Their "unrecognizability" is quite understandable - the vegetation on Socotra is mostly endemic, i.e., not found anywhere else. One of Socotra's most famous endemics and the symbol of the entire archipelago is the red dracaena, a mushroom tree with a green cap of leaves, reaching a height of 10 meters.


Park Zhangye Danxia (China)

Парк Чжанъе Данься (Китай)

Chinese geological park Zhangye Danxia is known throughout the world for its colorful rocks. These rocks, spurs of the Himalayas are the result of earth crustal shifts, weathering and erosion processes, affecting the rocks for 24 million years. Deposits of sandstone bright yellow, fiery red, green and cream-orange flowers are laid in such a way that some kind of puff cake is formed. Extraterrestrial beauty of Zhangye Danza Park in 2010 added to the UNESCO World Heritage List as a natural monument.

Mount Wulingyuan (China)

Горы Улинъюань (Китай)

James Cameron's famous "Avatar" was filmed in Zhangjiajie, a Chinese national park that is part of the Wulinyuan mountain system. After the film was released, tourists from China, mostly from China, poured into the screens in Wulinquan, and little was known about the unearthly beauties of these mountains. With their bizarre outlines, the three thousand peaks and mountain cliffs of Wulingyuan are due to the winds that for millions of years "processed" soft rocks, mainly sandstones and limestones.


Formation "Wave" (USA)

Формация «Волна» (США)

For this phenomenon, located on the border of two American states, Arizona and Utah, there was not even a suitable name. This is not a valley, not a canyon and not a plateau, but a certain rock formation, which was called the "Wave". Scientists believe that this strange "something" was formed from sand dunes with a large content of various minerals - manganese, iron oxides, magnesium. Minerals made the sand "striped", and the winds blowing here for hundreds of thousands of years, completed the case. The design was rather fragile, the access of tourists to the unique natural monument is limited.


Dallall Volcano (Ethiopia)

Вулкан Даллол (Эфиопия)

To see somewhere on Earth something, at least outwardly similar to the landscape near the volcano Dallall, which is on the border of Ethiopia with Eritrea, is unlikely to succeed. Astronomers believe that the surface of Jupiter's companion Io may look similar. Scenic terraces of fantastic appearance and fantastic shape formed around Dalla as a result of washing out of the walls of its crater, surrounding the hollow, a huge number of potassium salts, as well as iron and manganese. The water that accumulates in the hollow after tropical showers is a supersaturated solution of various salts and other minerals. Evaporating, the moisture leaves behind mineral deposits and ponds with colored water. The volcano Dallall erupted for the last time in 1926.