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Meet the caves of stone, the hot pink lake, and many more in this e-book written by RR!

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Places Nobody Loves 


Meet the caves of stone, the hot pink lake, and many more in this e-book written by RR!

Table of Contents




Great Basin National Park (Nevada, USA)


Mud Volcanoes of Azerbaijan (Azerbaijan)


Lake Baikal (Siberia)


Lake Retba (Senegal)


Marble Caves (Chile & Argentina)


Meteora (Greece)


Wizard Island Peak (Oregon, USA)


Jellyfish Lake (Palau)


Door To Hell (Turkmenistan)


Cartagena de Indias (Colombia)




Today, you shall read about 10 different amazing spectacles, unbeknownst, or unknown, to the world and its inhabitants, because of the fact that these places are labeled "dangerous and unlovable" because of their features. However, as you read these words, and the ones to come, hopefully, you will take a better view on these places nobody loves. 


Great Basin National Park is a beautiful travel destination that is seldom seen by those who visit Nevada, as they typically spend most of their time in the state’s most popular attraction, Las Vegas. If, however, the park showed up on their radars, visitors would find an incredibly scenic landscape that changes with the seasons.


In winter, the park area is full of awe-inspiring mountain streams, alpine lakes and limestone caverns. Furthermore, it hosts the region’s only glacier, which floats beneath Wheeler Peak, a 13,063-foot mountain named for explorer and cartographer George Wheeler. 5,000-year old bristlecone pine trees have grown on the glacial moraines, the debris deposited on the surface of the body of ice.






If you come to the park during the spring or fall, you might not see anyone for at least 4 hours along the park’s famous trails, which span 65 miles altogether. If you decide to visit in springtime, you can enjoy the fragrant aspen trees and wildflowers, catch some tasty cutthroat trout up at Snake Creek, and take in sweeping views of the overall basin and region. Autumn at the park shows the trees with their true colors and fallen pine nuts that are ready to be picked.

Summer temperatures are moderate and even draw out the park’s primary inhabitants, the Yellow-Bellied Rock Marmots, as they love to bask in the beautiful sun on the mountain outcrops. During this season, Great Basin boasts the best view of the Milky Way galaxy in the continental United States.

As it is 300 miles from Las Vegas, Great Basin National Park can be easily forgotten but it is an attraction that certainly deserves the trek. Parts of Mount Wheeler are closed during periods of heavy snowfall, which makes it impassable to hikers, but the park’s ever-changing landscape offers new views as each season comes around. In contrast to other national parks, Great Basin may see a relatively low number of annual visitors, but its soothing and peaceful atmosphere will make your visit to it worthwhile.



Mud volcanoes, also known as sedimentary volcanoes, eject millions of cubic meters of poisonous gas each year, not to mention tons of mud. They are caused by pockets of gas forcing their way up to the surface, along with mineral water and a lot of wet dirt. Azerbaijan is home to many such mud volcanoes, but few choose to see the fascinating and mysterious phenomena out of fear.


Mud volcanoes occur at weak points in the crust of the Earth. They grow along fault lines, which are breaks in the Earth’s tectonic plates. When these volcanoes erupt, they create dirt mounds whose heights can range from 5 to 500 meters (16 to 1600 feet), which is why some people can confuse mud volcanic eruptions with actual lava eruptions. Normal volcanoes, on the other hand, tend to have a height of at most 1020 meters (3340 feet).


Over a thousand mud volcanoes exist worldwide, and about 300 of those mud volcanoes exist and reside in Azerbaijan, including two of the world’s largest. Volcanic mud is primarily comprised of silica, but is also made up of other chemicals and compounds with healing properties, such as calcium, magnesium, organic acids, and hydrocarbons. Since the mud does not contain any toxic substances, it could be used for mud baths and other spa-like treatments.

Mud Volcanoes of Azerbaijan

Given the proliferation of these geological features, it makes sense that tourists may not want to visit in fear of eruptions. However, mud volcanoes usually form away from city centers. and therefore, don’t normally result in consequences. There have been injuries noted from mud volcanoes, namely one accident in 2001 that killed 6 shepherds and 2000 sheep.

Still, mud volcanoes only erupt every 20 years or so, and thus should definitely be part of your itinerary when touring Azerbaijan. Volcanoes in this area have small cones, or vents, which make them even more of a beautiful sight. Azerbaijan is visited by a limited number of tourists each year, which has prevented the mud volcanoes from degrading and being damaged by an influx of people, but its majestic and fiery mud wonders are a sight too good not to see.


Mud Volcanoes of Azerbaijan



Lake Baikal is the oldest and deepest freshwater lake in the world, spanning almost 400 miles. It's the world's largest water fountain, basically. It is located in southeast Siberia, Russia, an area with a cold climate that has probably limited its visitor count. Still, the lake’s freezing, oxygen-ample waters encompass many strange creatures, such as the golomyanka fish, which is prey to the lake’s most famous residents, freshwater seals.


According to geologists, the lake formed during the Mesozoic era (about 20 to 25 million years ago). The lake is encircled with snow-peaked mountains showing off their display of unrivaled attractiveness.


Lake Baikal was nominated by UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) to become a World Heritage Site and received that honor in 1996. According to UNESCO, the lake is known as the “Galapagos of Russia”.



Lake Baikal 

Baikal is one of the most limpid bodies of water in the world, in addition to being the purest. 300 streams enter the lake, yet there is only one exit, the Angara River. The lake has 27 islands, and most of them are vacant. In some parts of Lake Baikal, no electricity, cell service or people can be found.


Appropriately, “Baikal” means wealthy lake in Turkish. One of Lake Baikal’s greatest distinctions is that it is recognized as having 20% of the world’s fresh water. That’s the same as adding up the amount of freshwater in all of the Great Lakes! Despite the cold temperatures, Lake Baikal offers a scenic view and startling insight into the fact that of all the water in the world, only a third of a percent is drinkable.



Lake Baikal 

Lake Retba, also known as Lac Rose, known for its hot pink color, would be a good spot for tourists in the area.  However, many tourists skip the attraction because they are afraid that the salt in the lake will make them sick.


Lake Retba’s hot pink hue is caused by tons of salt mixing together with the salt-munching micro-algae Dunaliella salinawhich gives off a red dye when it consumes the salt, creating a huge basin of pink salty water. Don’t be fooled, though. The lake is second to only the Dead Sea in its salt levels.


Each day, salt harvesters work for seven hours using only shovels, buckets, and sticks to collect that “crystalline mineral”, raising money for their food, shelter  and clothing. When they go to work, they slather shea butter on their skin to prevent the salt slicing through it like a knife through butter. Spending those seven hours in the harsh saline, though, earns them only about 60 cents a bucket.


Lake Retba

Though there is bacteria in the water, it has been proven not to be harmful. In fact, it is quite the opposite: Dunaliella salina actually has powerful anti-cancer properties! It contains powerful plant substances, such as beta-carotene, which stops other chemicals that can hurt your DNA and possibly kill you through cancer strains those harmful substances contain. Therefore, although Lake Retba looks harmful, it is a beautiful place to visit and a site teeming with beauty for all to see.

Each year, those unknown and nearly forgotten workers collect almost 24,000 tons of salt. 70 percent of the salt collected is exported to the rest of Africa. So next time you pick up that salt shaker, think about where it came from.


Lake Retba

Cuevas de Marmol, also known as the Marble Caves of Chile Chico, is a peninsula adjacent to Lake General Carrera, which spans Chile’s border with Argentina. There are three places on Chile’s side of the Caves: the chapel, the cathedral, and the caves. The caves were formed when salty waves eroded marble that was jutting out from the water.

The entire peninsula weighs almost 5 billion tons! Local companies offer boat tours of the water-soluble caves. Over thousands of years, the waves eroded the caves until certain parts dissolved under pressure from the water.

Marble Caves

One of the lake’s distinguishing features is a natural phenomenon caused by particles inside glaciers that melt into the lake, which then refract the blue wavelengths of sunlight, creating the lake’s famous blue color. The lake bottom is covered in silt, which is “fine sand, clay, or other material carried by running water”.

When the glaciers melt, they provide the lake with a huge source of water that, hopefully, can last for years if undisturbed. While the Marble Caves are not well-known worldwide, it can have an extraordinary effect and leave a lasting memory on the tourists who do see it.


Marble Caves

The city of Meteora, Greece is home to an astonishing natural phenomenon rarely seen by any people but religious figures. The city has been nicknamed “the columns of the sky”. Meteora became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1988. You can often find priests praying on top of the rock spire.

The spires are also frequented by monks who wish to find a quiet and peaceful place to meditate. Each year, tourists of many religions visit to see Meteora’s natural beauty.


Some of the Orthodox churches on top of the rock towers have been there for over 600 years, such as the Varlaam Monastery and the Holy Trinity Monastery. Others who lived in Meteora’s spires were people whose homes were invaded.

They sought shelter and found comfort in the rocky outcroppings of the towers. These towers have been visited by dignitaries and tourists alike. Why don’t you go see them?



Meet Wizard Island Peak, the jewel of Oregon’s Crater Lake National Park. Unfortunately, this jewel is not seen by many, for they are afraid that the tall volcanic cinder cone might will erupt. Tourists need not fear, though, since it bears the remnants of a volcanic eruption that occurred 7,693 years ago.


Also known as the Witch’s Cauldron, the volcanic cinder cone stands 763 feet tall. The island, at the west end of Crater Lake, was formed when a large stratovolcano, Mount Mazama, dangerously erupted years ago, forming the crater that would later hold Crater Lake, as well as many other volcanic cinder cones. When Mount Mazama erupted, it was 42 times more powerful than the eruption of active volcano Mount St. Helens in Washington in 1980.

If you take a closer look at the crater that caps the top of the peak, it appears as though the eruptions have only recently stopped, for two reasons. Firstly, the flows formed from the lava eruptions wrap around the sides of the cinder cone in a spiral. Secondly, few trees have covered the island’s surface since the last eruption.

Wizard Island Peak

In the 1880s, William Steel, an Oregon native who fought to have Crater Lake designated as a national park, nicknamed the island “Wizard Island” because it reminded him of a wizard’s hat. Since then, many have traveled to the island on boat tours during the summertime.


Though this is a long way to travel for most, once you get to Crater Lake, you will be very happy you did. Sure, maybe you wouldn’t want to visit a mud volcano. It’s in the name: muddy! How about a real volcano, though? Wouldn’t you like to see the lava flowing around and around the volcano? Spiralling around the cinder cone? It’s one travel story you would want to tell your friends about!


Wizard Island Peak


Jellyfish Lake is situated on a vacant island that is adjacent to the city of Koror, Palau. Palau is a group of islands in the South Pacific Ocean. The archipelago is isolated from the rest of the ocean, though it once was a part of it. After the Ice Age, the jellyfish were confined to the small lake.

They existed on rapidly-growing algae, and with no predatory animals to eat at least some of their prodigious population, the jellyfishes prospered. The jellyfishes do have stingers, though they are not powerful enough to be felt by humans.


Jellyfish Lake

Swimming is permitted, but scuba diving is prohibited. Due to the sensitive ecosystem of the lake, diving can be dangerous, so stay well clear of the extremely hazardous layer of hydrogen sulfate that rests 10 to 15 metres below the surface.  The chemicals can cause extreme pain not to mention death. Golden jellyfish roam free, with no worries about becoming prey. The path of the sun guides them as they swim to their food. Though it is remote, Jellyfish Lake is a beautiful place to visit as well as an indescribable wonder to have on our beautiful planet.


Jellyfish Lake

Forty years ago, a cavernous blazing pit appeared in the northern area of dry Turkmenistan. Today that pit still exists blazing day and night.  It is known by many names such as “The Door to Hell”, “The Gates to Hell”, “The Crater of Fire” or “The Darvaza Crater”.  

Turkmenistan has the “sixth largest natural gas reserves” in the world.  Naturally scientists were intrigued.  They drilled into the ground looking for oil but instead they got a huge crater that could possibly explode or poison someone to the high levels of methane in the crater.  

Door to Hell


Therefore, to avoid mass death the scientists set fire to the crater, hoping to flush out the dangerous gases.  It has been forty years since they lit the flame, and it’s still burning at 99 feet high.  When explorer George Kourounis stepped into the pit of fire, he intended to collect samples of rock so that scientists could study them.


When Kourounis came out, he described the Door to Hell as a “coliseum of fire”.  The list of Natural Wonders of the world should include the Door to Hell for it is a wonder in a class of its own.


Door to Hell


Known far and wide as the “queen of the Caribbean coast”, Cartagena, Colombia has been crowned a UNESCO World Heritage site.  The city was named for Cartagena, Spain and was founded on June 1st, 1533.

It was one of the most important ports in the Caribbean. On its streets, you can find all types of buildings, such as temples, embassies, and homes. Cartagena is full of fashionable restaurants and cafes, and has an Old World charm.




Cartagena has a population of just over a million people, and is also frequented by 6.5 million people annually. The South American city has a tropical and humid climate and, until recently, was thought to be a danger zone due to the huge presence of paramilitary troops in Cartagena.


The United States has instituted a plan to help Colombia recover from increasing guerrilla, or irregular warfare attacks on Colombian soil. It has sent over $212 million dollars to help the third-world country recover as well as redevelop its economic structure. Thanks to the U.S., Cartagena now has one of the most comprehensive armies in South America.  



Despite what many say about Cartagena’s safety, its natural beauty and beaches make it a must-see for travelers from all parts of the world.



Though I would normally agree when people say these places are dangerous, those who have described them as dangerous don't know about the research that I have done, which has made me rethink my view of these places nobody loves.


Works Cited