Stunning Natural Wonders that Only Happen in Summer

The world is full of beautiful experiences only Mother Nature can provide. From Colombia’s ‘liquid rainbow’ river, thanks to its blooming algae to the Arctic’s Northern Lights to Yosemite’s firefall – to name just a few. In order to catch these phenomena, timing is everything. And summertime is no different. This season, Earth is putting on quite the show.

August 16, 2020
By: Lucy Sherriff

Photo By: Brina Bunt

Photo By: Miemo Penttinen - miemo.net

Photo By: Feifei Cui-Paoluzzo

Photo By: Jeremy_Hogan

Photo By: Kevin Key / Slworking

Moonbow, Zimbabwe

The moonbow, or lunar rainbow as it’s also called, is a mystical event that happens at Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe. The rainbow is created by light refracting through water particles in the air. Usually this happens when the sun is shining, but June, July and August provide prime conditions for the moonbow to appear: clear nights, dark skies, not too high a water level but enough to provide sufficient water spray. Victoria Falls is one of the few places on earth this occurs.

Midnight Sun, Arctic Circle

During the summer months, north of the Arctic Circle, the sun simply does not set. In Northern Scandinavia, the earth’s axis is tilted towards the sun, and so exposed to the sun’s rays. It’s an unnerving phenomenon means the region’s inhabitants are out and about kayaking, hiking and more, into the early hours of the morning.

Ocean Mist, Pacific Coast

The marine fog that coddles the Pacific Coast in a thick, misty blanket can make for a stunning, mysterious experience. Marine fog forms as a result of complex interactions between atmospheric pressure, ocean evaporation, temperatures and coastal mountain topography. But the result is a dramatic vista, particularly if you’re hiking along the bluffs in Northern California, where the fog is especially thick. Head to Mendocino County to explore the coastline, and be prepared to be shrouded in a foggy, otherworldly atmosphere.

Fireflies, Worldwide

In the US fireflies appear in May, June and July, during the warmer months. They can be viewed all over the world, but for a really special display, the Great Smoky Mountain National Park in North Carolina comes out tops. The mountains are home to synchronous fireflies, a species which can actually synchronize their flashing light patterns. Fireflies, which are in fact beetles, using their lights in a mating display. They can be seen in open fields or forest edges near standing water, depending on the species.

Bioluminescent Waves, Worldwide

In Florida, The best time to catch this phenomenon is during the warmer months of May through November, after 9pm, on the state’s Space Coast. You’ll also want to time your visit according to the lunar calendar. The best views are five days after a full moon, when the skies are at their darkest. Rent a see-through kayak to make the most of the experience, and head to the region’s Banana River, Indian River and Mosquito Lagoon to paddle through mangroves and eerily still waters.

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