1. Zhangye Danxia Landform in Gansu, China
This landform is also sometimes called “the Rainbow Mountains”, because it is that colorful.
It can literally be called nature’s art – it looks like it has been painted but it is completely natural.
Zhangye Danxia landscape is full of very high red cliffs and other formations in various colors. This is certainly something that you can see only here and nowhere else in the world. Besides the magnificent colors that you surely don’t expect when you’re looking at mountains, there are also rocky outcrops that look like castles and towers, as well as some animals, and the view gets even better when there is a mist, so the whole thing looks like a mirage.
Zhangye Danxia was formed over a long period and it owes its existence mostly to the erosion of red sandstone.
The nature’s process of creating this amazing place included a long period of desert climate and conditions, which was followed by freeze-thaw peeling, to finally come to its present shape because of the wind and water erosion, to which it owes its variety of layers, colors, textures, shapes and sizes.
This place is a national park and it is only a 30-minute-ride away from the city of Zhangye. Tourist buses are not allowed inside the national park, but you can rent special sightseeing cars and enjoy the views and the ride.
The best time to go would be from June to September, because that is when the weather is the most comfortable and the colors are then more vivid because of the combination of strong sun and some rain. Sunrise and sunset are the times of the day when your experience will be most heightened.