Lake Powell, Utah and Arizona, United States

Lake Powell, Utah

Credit: A.Hulot

Lake Powell is a man-made reservoir on the Colorado river. Located in the United States between Utah and Arizona, Lake Powell is surrounded by magnificent Navajo sandstone canyon walls in bright oranges, reds, and whites. These striking colors contrast beautifully with Lake Powell’s blue-green waters. Lake Powell is a sprawling, winding lake, and is the second largest man-made lake in the United States. The lake was made when Glen Canyon Dam was constructed in the early 1960s, flooding Glen Canyon. The lake, along with Horseshoe Bend and the notable Rainbow Bridge National Monument rock formation, is now part of the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area. Visitors to the lake can tour its waters via boat rental or guided tour. Tour operators and lodging can be found in the nearby town of Page in Arizona.

Lake Powell, Utah

Credit: Linda Weyers

Lake Powell, Utah

Credit: PRA

Lake Powell, Utah

Credit: Reed Miller

Lake Powell, Utah

Credit: James Neeley

Lake Powell, Utah

Credit: Mike Jones

Lake Powell, Utah

Credit: Mike Jones

Uluru (Ayers Rock), Alice Springs, Australia

The massive Uluru, also known as Ayers Rock, is a sandstone rock formation in central Australia. Officially located in the Northern Territory, Uluru is an inselberg (literally “island mountain”) which is a leftover section of a mountain range after erosion has removed the original mountain range. The formation is home to ancient wall paintings, springs, and caves. Uluru stands 348 meters (1,142 ft) tall. It is popular with photographers during sunset when it appears to glow red. Many visitors opt to enjoy a steep hour-long climb to the top of Uluru. Uluru is located inside the Uluru – Kata Tjuta National Park and visitors must pay a $25 fee to enter the area. There is a nearby airport for those interested in a short and easy visit to Uluru. Visitors wishing to stay longer can find accommodation in the nearby town of Alice Springs.

Uluru (Ayers Rock), Alice Springs, Australia

Credit: Gary Arndt

Uluru (Ayers Rock), Alice Springs, Australia

Credit: nosha

Uluru (Ayers Rock), Alice Springs, Australia

Credit: Tim Williams

Uluru (Ayers Rock), Alice Springs, Australia

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Uluru (Ayers Rock), Alice Springs, Australia

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Uluru (Ayers Rock), Alice Springs, Australia

Credit: John Dalkin

Uluru (Ayers Rock), Alice Springs, Australia

Uluru (Ayers Rock), Alice Springs, Australia

The Wave, Coyote Buttes, Arizona, USA

The Wave, Coyote Buttes, Arizona, USA

Credit: Gabe

In Arizona, near the border with Utah, in the United States, you can find a stunning sandstone rock formation called The Wave. The Wave is on the slopes of the Coyote Buttes, which are in turn located in the Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, on the Colorado Plateau. This formation is actually sand dunes calcified in vertical and horizontal layers, and the fascinating color bands are iron oxides, hematite, and goethite. The Jurassic-age Navajo sandstone making up The Wave is estimated to be 190 million years old. Getting to The Wave requires a moderately difficult 3 mile hike from the Wire Pass Trailhead. Due to the delicate nature of this formation, visitors must arrange a day permit in advance and pay a $7 fee per person. Only 20 of the highly sought-after permits are issued for each day. More info on permits can be found on the Bureau of Land Management website. Camping is not allowed in the permit area, and the closest accommodation can be found in the small towns of Kanab, Utah and Page, Arizona.

The Wave, Coyote Buttes, Arizona, USA

Credit: Gabe

The Wave, Coyote Buttes, Arizona, USA

Credit: Shaan Hurley

The Wave, Coyote Buttes, Arizona, USA

Credit: Gabe

The Wave, Coyote Buttes, Arizona, USA

Credit: Gabe

The Wave, Coyote Buttes, Arizona, USA

Credit: Daniel Pham

The Wave, Coyote Buttes, Arizona, USA

Credit: Ian Parker

The Wave, Coyote Buttes, Arizona, USA

Credit: Gabe

The Wave, Coyote Buttes, Arizona, USA

Credit: Frans Lanting

The Wave, Coyote Buttes, Arizona, USA

Credit: Jim Gordon

The Wave, Coyote Buttes, Arizona, USA

Credit: Gabe

Antelope Canyon, Arizona, USA

Antelope Canyon, Arizona, USA

Antelope Canyon is a slot canyon located in Arizona on Navajo land. It was formed over the years by flash flooding that eroded the sandstone. Flash flooding is still a danger to visitors today with the last major flash flood occurring in 2006. Tourists may only visit the canyon with a guide because of this flood danger. There are two sections of the canyon: Upper Antelope Canyon (also called The Crack) and Lower Antelope Canyon (also called The Corkscrew). The Navajo call the Upper Canyon Tse’ bighanilini, meaning “the place where water runs through rocks.” The Lower Canyon is called Hasdestwazi, meaning “spiral rock arches.” The canyons can both be found within the LeChee Chapter of the Navajo Nation, in Lake Powell Navajo Tribal Park. There are entrance fees for both canyons, and these fees provide the Navajo Nation with much needed income.

Antelope Canyon, Arizona, USA

Credit: Ian Parker

Antelope Canyon, Arizona, USA

Credit: Luca Galuzzi

Antelope Canyon, Arizona, USA

Credit: Luca Galuzzi

Antelope Canyon, Arizona, USA

Antelope Canyon, Arizona, USA

Antelope Canyon, Arizona, USA

Credit: Moondigger

Antelope Canyon, Arizona, USA

Antelope Canyon, Arizona, USA

Antelope Canyon, Arizona, United States

Credit: Luca Galuzzi

Antelope Canyon, Arizona, United States