It's normal to overlook the simple pleasures in life when we feel stuck in a place or routine that doesn't fulfill us. But ironically, those are also the moments when we'd benefit from a little inspiration, right? And sometimes, when we get caught up in the humdrum of everyday life, all it takes is a reminder of the beauty that surrounds us. There's something about mountain landscapes, ocean views, striking architecture, and natural wonders that pulls us outside of ourselves and fills us with optimism. If you need a fresh batch of travel ideas to fuel your wanderlust or you simply want to see some mind-blowingly beautiful destinations, this bucket list of the prettiest places on Earth will do the trick.
In the Spotlight: Cascate del Mulino, Saturnia
With a population of only 280, this Tuscan town is nothing short of stunning. These aquamarine hot springs are a sight to see, and beyond their beauty, the thermal waters offer a ton of health benefits.
In the Spotlight: Tu Le Valley, Vietnam
The terraced rice fields in Northeast Vietnam create an enchanting pattern of tiles stretching across the landscape. The isolated hut in this image makes it look even more striking.
In the Spotlight: Upper Austria
Ah, Upper Austria, where fairy-tale views abound, even somewhere as mundane as a common freeway. This winter wonderland gives us a lot of reasons to love the snow.
In the Spotlight: Lake Powell, Utah
A reservoir on the Colorado River, Lake Powell is truly magnificent. Serpentining its way through the canyons, this river really looks like it's on another planet.
In the Spotlight: Budapest, Hungary
This Eastern European gem exudes romance thanks to the scenic views, beautiful neo-Gothic architecture, and endless cultural opportunities.
In the Spotlight: Great Salt Lake, Utah
The Great Salt Lake is as pretty as it gets, especially if you have a thing for pastels. How on earth is this arrangement of purples, greens, pinks, and blues real?
In the Spotlight: Gordes, France
We'll never be able to get enough of the lavender fields in the valleys of the South of France. There's something about the natural symmetry and pastel color. Being there is even better, as you get the soothing effects of the scent, too.
In the Spotlight: Havana, Cuba
With history and visual delights everywhere you look, Cuba's capital city is endlessly inspiring, especially for anyone with a soft spot for nostalgia.
In the Spotlight: Mauritius, East Africa
The beautiful island nation of Mauritius is worth exploring for so many reasons, but we imagine that it'd be pretty hard to leave this strip of sprawling pristine white sand that looks out onto the crystal-clear Indian Ocean.
In the Spotlight: Arashiyama, Kyoto
Between the pink cherry blossom trees, waterfalls, bright and exciting cities, and quaint, charming towns, what's not to see in Japan? This bamboo forest is definitely on our bucket lists.
In the Spotlight: Vinicunca, Cusco Region, Peru
Appropriately named Montaña de Siete Colores, or Rainbow Mountain, this national landmark in Peru is a must-visit destination.
In the Spotlight: Bondi Icebergs, Sydney
Located in Sydney, Australia, these historical pools look out at the moody seas ahead, making them a true visual delight. And they're open to the public.
In the Spotlight: Venice, Italy
Venice will always have our hearts as one of the prettiest places on earth, no matter how empty or cramped with tourists it is when we visit.
In the Spotlight: Spitzkoppe, Namibia
Spitzkoppe is a granite peak in the Namid desert of Namibia. Lighted up by the milky way, this rock arch is more than 120 million years old, which is a pretty hard number for us to wrap our heads around.
In the Spotlight: Cappadocia, Turkey
The fleet of hot air balloons flying over Turkey is a sight to see, and we'd love to take part in it someday. We imagine it feeling a little like you've jumped inside a colorful Dr. Suess storybook.
In the Spotlight: Torres del Paine National Park, Patagonia
The Salto Grande waterfall is just one of the many beautiful gems inside the Torres del Paine National in Patagonia. This part of the park falls inside Chile.
In the Spotlight: Hawa Mahal, Jaipur
Located in the Rajasthan state of India, this palace is a stunning architectural rainbow of pink and orange hues. It's constructed of red sandstone, and its name, Hawa Mahal, translates to "palace of winds." Dreamy, right?
In the Spotlight: Bruges, Belgium
I guess we have a thing for picturesque towns built around canals, where the water laps against the buildings and rocks you to sleep each night.
In the Spotlight: Cuadra San Cristóbal, Mexico City
Mexico City is a mecca of art and design with cheerful colors and whimsical architecture filling the streets everywhere you look. It also has a bustling culinary scene, so you can expect even your food to look artful.
In the Spotlight: Mykonos, Greece
Let's end the tour of the prettiest places on Earth on a summery note. With ocean views of a thousand leagues of blue in every direction, Mykonos is the ultimate beach destination.