Do you groove on great gorgeous gorges? Going to see one canyon or another is no doubt on most people’s bucket list.
If you’re still undecided about which canyon you wish to seem, here is a list of the world’s most incredible canyons to help you make your decision.
1. Dadès Gorge, Morocco
You will get a mesmerizing view of Dadès Valley from the long and winding road between Agoudal and Tamellalt (providing you don’t suffer from motion sickness.) Dadès Gorge is the result of the erosive powers of the Dadès River during storm seasons. It separates the Anti-Atlas and Atlas Mountains. The best time to go hiking here is the spring or fall.
2. The Fish River Canyon, Namibia
The size of the Fish River Canyon alone can inspire awe. The canyon is roughly 26 kilometers (16 miles) wide and 161 kilometers (100 miles) long. It’s approximately 549 meters (1,800 feet) deep.
Local legend claims that a huge snake is responsible for all the canyon’s winding curves. Take the five-day hike from Hobas to Ai-Ais Springs. It’s best attempted from July through mid-October when it’s cooler.
3. Peek-a-boo Slot Canyon, USA
Slot canyons are narrow, steep gorges of sedimentary rock or sandstone. Peek-a-boo Slot Canyon is in Utah’s Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument. You have to make a 3.7-meter (12 foot) -climb just to get to the entrance. The best time not to visit is when the weatherman predicts rain. The canyon can all too quickly fill with rushing water when it rains.
4. Spooky Gulch, USA
Spooky Gulch is also in Utah. It is thus named because it gets very dark inside its numerous deep slot formations. You can see Spooky Gulch and Peek-a-boo Canyon both in a 3.5-mile (5.6 kilometer) circular hike that begins at the popular Dry Fork Overlook. The best time to go is the spring or fall. The weather’s better and it’s quieter too.
5. Peekaboo Canyon, USA
This Peekaboo Canyon is about 11 miles north of Kanab, Utah. The entrance is at the end of a sandy road. A 4WD vehicle is the vehicle of choice here.
The trail is 0.7-miles in length. It is generally flat and narrow as you go. There are a few rocky moments too. Still, the red rocks create an ambiance that is beautiful.
6. Copper Canyon, Mexico
Located in the renowned Sierra Madre Occidental mountains, Copper Canyon comes complete with verdant, rugged slopes and wonderful views. If you’re not a hardcore hiker, climb aboard the popular train known as Chepe. This trip runs for 652 kilometers (405 miles) between Los Mochis and Chihuahua. The views of the canyon as you travel through the latter are stunning.
7. Kali Gandaki Gorge, Nepal
The Kali Gandaki Gorge is the popular Himalayan canyon that separates the majestic mountains of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri. It’s named after the Hindu goddess Kali, famous for embodying the power of nature. It is 6,000 meters (20,000 feet) deep. The best time to visit is from October through December. The sky is clearer and you avoid the rainy season.
8. Echidna Chasm, Australia
Situated in the popular Purnululu National Park, Echidna Chasm is a narrow, steep gorge. It is 200 meters (656 feet) high and as narrow as one meter (three feet) in some areas. The chasm is especially beauteous when the daylight shines down in between the red rocks. The chasm is only a two-kilometer (1.2 mile) return walk from the Echidna parking lot.
9. Witches Gulch, USA
Witches Gulch is situated in the Wisconsin Dells of the Wisconsin River. The rock walls have an interesting, undulating shape. It’s believed to have happened during the last ice age when the state’s glacial lake flooded out from its dam. You can only see it by boat. The best time to visit is from April through September when it’s warmer.
10. Grand Canyon, USA
The Grand Canyon is world-famous. Located in Arizona, it’s 277 miles long and 6,000 feet deep. Generations of visitors have long been fascinated by the striking scarlet rocks that are cut apart by labyrinthine gorges. Online sources indicate the canyon is visited by 6 million visitors every year. Visit in spring or fall if you want to avoid the crowds.
11. Verdon Gorge, France
Verdon Gorge is situated in central Provence. (It’s a two-hour drive from Cannes or two-and-a-half hours from Nice.) The name of this limestone canyon comes from the French term for “green.” The gorge offers visitors a memorable view of the emerald Verdon River below. It’s a great place for climbing, hiking, kayaking, and rafting.
12. Colca Canyon, Peru
The quieter Colca Canyon is far from the more crowded Inca Trail. Specifically, it is located 209 kilometers (130 miles) from the city of Arequipa. This lesser-known hot spot offers some challenging hiking trails and picture-perfect views all its own. Framed by the Andean Mountains, this canyon is (at some points) 3,270 meters (10,730 feet) deep.
13. Waimea Canyon, USA
Waimea Canyon is in Kauai, Hawaii. The canyon cuts through the Na Pali-Kona Forest Reserve and the Puu Ka Pele Forest Reserve. It is the result of a collapsing volcano roughly 4 million years ago. The scenic canyon’s red patches are the product of the exposed basalt being eroded. It is about 3,600 feet deep and almost 14 miles in length.
14. Al Siq, Jordan
Al Siq is special because it is actually the official gateway to ancient Petra. This canyon is only 1.2 kilometers (under one mile) in length but there are historical attractions to see. For example, there are the ruins of the 2,000-year-old plumbing system and the ancient wall carving of a camel too. Visit early in the morning and beat the crowds.
15. Buckskin Gulch, USA
Located on the border between Arizona and Utah, Buckskin Gulch is a stunning slot canyon that is perfect for hikers. It is 15 miles long and provides quite a challenge to hikers. There are large potholes filled with water and huge boulders to climb over too. You can hike there all year. However, if you attempt it in the colder months you will have to get a permit.
16. Weano Gorge, Australia
Western Australia’s Weano Gorge is found in Karijini National Park. The gorge features glowing pools and luminous ridges. It has a banded look due to more than 2 million years worth of rivers rushing through layers of dolomite, iron and shale rock. Park your car at the Weano Day Use Area lot and walk the three-kilometer (less than two-mile) loop to Handrail Pool.
17. Taroko Gorge, Taiwan
Taroko Gorge, in the Taroko National Park, is a must-see for anyone who visits Taiwan. It’s a short flight or three-hour drive from the capital Taipei. This canyon is reportedly a hiker’s heaven.
Hike the trails that weave throughout the caves, tunnels, and marble walls. Not a hiker? Take a bus tour through the entire park and see the gorge and other attractions.
18. Samariá Gorge, Greece
This rocky canyon is ensconced near the quaint village of Samariá in western Crete. See it all from the popular 16 kilometer (10-mile) hiking trail. You’ll climb to see incredible views of the White Mountains after wading through crystal-clear water. So pack your hiking boots to deal with the rocks and other challenges. Hiking here can be difficult during the summer.
19. Subway Canyon, USA
Subway Canyon is a short yet noteworthy portion of the memorable Left Fork of North Creek, in Utah. The canyon was created by a lava flow which actually pushed through the rock. Hike the seven-plus mile trail from Wildcat Trailhead to Subway. It involves hiking, wading, and swimming! It’s a popular place so be sure to get your permit in advance.
20. Yarlung Tsangpo Grand Canyon, China
The Yarlung Tsangpo is the deepest canyon in the world. It’s well-known for its geological history, biodiversity, and dangerous waters. The Yarlung Tsangpo River is nicknamed the Everest of Rivers due to its challenging conditions. Much of this canyon is still inaccessible because of the tough terrain, slippery slopes, and often unpredictable weather.
21. Fjaðrárgljúfur Canyon, Iceland
This natural beauty was created during the last Ice Age as the running glacial meltwater carved through the rock. It’s sometimes closed due to a high amount of visitors. The best time to visit is during the summer or early fall. That way you avoid having to deal with icy, slippery paths due to the winter ice and snow.
22. Blyde River Canyon, South Africa
Blyde River Canyon is 50 kilometers (31 miles) long and features rocky pools, verdant slopes, and a range of wildlife. This is reported to be the place where the ancient continent of Gondwanaland broke apart over 200 million years ago.
Stay at the little village of Graskop. Hike one of the nearby trails. You can also go white-water rafting.
23. Zebra Slot Canyon, USA
You’ll discover Zebra Slot Canyon near Escalante in Utah. This canyon is 300 feet long and, in some sections, only 10 inches in width. Some hikers turn back because they get claustrophobic. The trail begins at Hole in the Rock Road then gradually descends into Harris Wash, where you’ll come to the canyon’s mouth.
24. Tiger Leaping Gorge, China
Tiger Leaping Gorge is ensconced between Jade Dragon Snow Mountain and Haba Snow Mountain. The gorge is 3,900 meters (12,800 feet) deep and 24 kilometers (15 miles) long. It features rocky cliffs, piercing blue water, and well-serviced footpaths. Nevertheless, the canyon still retains an atmosphere of untamed wilderness. Activists and the indigenous Naxi people fought to preserve it.
25. Arizona Hot Springs, USA
The Arizona Hot Springs is found in the Lake Mead National Recreation Area. You can hike there along a canyon trail that is roughly three miles long. These springs are heated via volcanic rocks located where a pair of faults meet. They discharge the water at a speed of 30 gallons (136l) per minute with an average temperature of 111ºF.
26. Itaimbezinho Canyon, Brazil
This canyon has been here for over 130 million years. It is found near Porto Alegre in the beautiful Aparados da Serra National Park. It features steep walls and lush, native pines. Hike the Trilha do Vértice or the 6.3 kilometer (four-mile) long Cotovelo. The best time to visit during Brazil’s winter from May through August.
27. Antelope Canyon, USA
Ensconced in Arizona, Antelope Canyon has swirling sandstone walls and an upper and lower section. The best time to visit both areas is either in the late afternoon or early morning when the views of the red rock here are the most impressive. Being part of the Navajo Nation you can only visit here as part of a guided tour.
28. Charyn Canyon, Kazakhstan
You will find Charyn Canyon between the Tien Shan mountains and the Altyn Emel National Park. It was born from wind and water erosion. The canyon is 277 meters (980 feet) deep and 90 kilometers (56 miles) in length. The best time to see the colorful rock formations here is in spring or summer since it can be icy here in the winter.
29. The Wave, USA
The Wave in Arizona offers visitors an otherworldly feel. The bands and billowing curves of colored rock almost appear to be an optical illusion. The Bureau of Land Management reports that less than five percent actually receive permits to hike here. The best time to apply is from December through February when the number of applicants is significantly lower.
30. Horseshoe Bend, USA
Horseshoe Bend is located near Page, Arizona. It is thusly named because from above it resembles a huge horseshoe. The shape is the result of the meandering course of the Colorado River. If you have some time to explore the general area keep in mind that Horseshoe Bend is only five miles downstream from Lake Powell and the Glen Canyon Dam too.