31 stunning real-world photos that might be your next phone wallpaper.

It's a fact: Every year, we're spending more and more time looking at our phones.

Estimates indicate that on average Americans spend anywhere from three to five hours on their smartphones every day. That's an astoundingly high number — and the perfect excuse for a little perspective.

There's an extraordinary world buzzing all around us, and we miss so much of it staring endlessly at our tiny screens. You say your busy life won't let you escape to some of our planet's most remarkable places? Not to worry. You can bring those places back home to your phone.


Here are 31 marvelous world wonders we think would look perfect as your lock screen.

1. Iceland's northern lights are a stunning sight, in person or online.

Who knew geomagnetic storms could be so stunning? Image by iStock.

2. Find peace in this photo of a storm-swept lighthouse.

Image by iStock.

3. The arch at Palau's Rock Islands is beautiful above water and below.

Image by iStock.

4. Milford Sound on New Zealand's South Island is an Instagram filter-lover's dream.

Image by iStock.

5. A huge statue of the Hindu god Lord Murugan greets visitors to the Batu Caves in Malaysia.

Image by iStock.

6. Watch sunlight break over the peaks in the Himalayas.

Image by iStock.

7. About 45 million gallons of water rush over North America's largest waterfall, Niagara Falls, every minute.

Image by iStock.

8. This ginormous "Christ the Redeemer" statue watches over Rio de Janeiro's six million residents.

Image by iStock.

9. Live vicariously through these thrill-seeking spelunkers.

Image by iStock.

10. Looking at Haystack Rock near Cannon Beach, Oregon, might inspire you to head to your nearest beach.

Image by iStock

11. Soothe your muggle heart with this image of the IRL Hogwarts Express chugging across Scotland.

Image by iStock

12. These towering redwoods are some of the largest trees in North America.

Image by iStock

13. This tiny sandbar in the Pacific didn't think it'd end up a helicopter perch. But sometimes life — and conspicuous wealth — finds a way.

Image by iStock

14. Mossy green wonderlands — like this one near Oregon's Punch Bowl Falls — are unique to the temperate rainforests of the Pacific Northwest.

Image by iStock

15. Follow the stepping stones of Northern Ireland's Giant's Causeway straight into the North Atlantic.

Image by iStock

16. Decades of pounding surf carved a perfect alcove in the rocks at Lands End in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.

Image by iStock

17. Mother Nature really shows off her sculpting skills in Utah's Paria Canyon.

Image by iStock

18. The Matterhorn is more than a ride I got stuck on for 45 minutes at Disneyland. It's a breath-catchingly stunning peak in the Alps.

Image by iStock

19. The Grand Canyon is so incredible, it really deserves a better adjective. "Astoundageous" maybe?

Image by iStock

20. The narrow, rocky green peaks of the Wulingyuan scenic area in China's Hunan province are both a Unesco World Heritage site, and the inspiration for Pandora, the world in "Avatar."

Image by iStock

21. Creeping tree roots reclaiming this temple in Angkor, Cambodia, are a reminder that, eventually, no matter how hard we work, nature always wins.

Image by iStock

22. Find your most flattering light in Arizona's Antelope Canyon.

Image by iStock

23. The Colorado River's Horseshoe Bend in Arizona will keep you coming around for more.

Image by iStock

24. This Norwegian waterfall is stunning and proud, naturally.

Image by iStock

25. This icy blue Icelandic cave is guaranteed free of abominable snowmen.

Image by iStock

26. Gold dunes and golden skies are everywhere in Morocco's eastern desert.

Image by iStock

27. This solitary tree in New Zealand's Lake Wanaka isn't content to live on land.

Image by iStock

28. This secluded beach at Knysna Heads in South Africa's Western Cape Province is #goals.

Image by iStock

29. Baobab trees beat the thirst by storing water away in their thick trunks. Just like your phone's text message archive.

Image by iStock

30. Nobody knows for sure where the Sphinx's nose is, but she's a towering beauty nonetheless.

Image by iStock

31. Find peace — however you define it — in the stark cold beauty of the Himalayan mountains.

Image by iStock

Did we miss your favorite spot in our wallpaper roundup? Let us know!

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After years of service as a military nurse in the naval Marine Corps, Los Angeles, California-resident Rhonda Jackson became one of the 37,000 retired veterans in the U.S. who are currently experiencing homelessness — roughly eight percent of the entire homeless population.

"I was living in a one-bedroom apartment with no heat for two years," Jackson said. "The Department of Veterans Affairs was doing everything they could to help but I was not in a good situation."

One day in 2019, Jackson felt a sudden sense of hope for a better living arrangement when she caught wind of the ongoing construction of Veteran's Village in Carson, California — a 51-unit affordable housing development with one, two and three-bedroom apartments and supportive services to residents through a partnership with U.S.VETS.

Her feelings of hope quickly blossomed into a vision for her future when she learned that Veteran's Village was taking applications for residents to move in later that year after construction was complete.

"I was entered into a lottery and I just said to myself, 'Okay, this is going to work out,'" Jackson said. "The next thing I knew, I had won the lottery — in more ways than one."

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Cats are notoriously weird. Everyone who's had cats knows that they each have their own unique quirks, idiosyncrasies, preferences, habits, and flat-out WTFness.

But even those of us who have experience with bizarre cat behavior are blown away by the antics this "cat dad" is able to get away with.

Kareem and Fifi are the cat parents of Chase, Skye, and Millie—literally the most chill kitties ever. They share their family life on TikTok as @dontstopmeowing, and their videos have been viewed millions of times. When you see them, you'll understand why.

Take Chase's spa days, for example. It may seem unreal at first, but watch what happens when Fifi tries to take away his cucumber slices.

When she puts them back on his eyes? WHAT?! What cat would let you put them on once, much less get mad when you take them off?

This cat. Chase is living his best life.

But apparently, it's not just Chase. Skye and Millie have also joined in "spaw day." How on earth does one couple end up with three hilariously malleable cats?

Oh, and if you think they must have been sedated or something, look at how wide awake they are during bath time. That's right, bath time. Most cats hate water, but apparently, these three couldn't care less. How?

They'll literally do anything. The Don't Stop Meowing channel is filled with videos like this. Cats wearing glasses. Cats wearing hats. Cats driving cars. It's unbelievable yet highly watchable entertainment.

If you're worried that Kareem gets all the love and Fifi constantly gets the shaft, that seems to be a bit for show. Look at Chase and Fifi's conversation about her leaving town for a business trip:

The whole channel is worth checking out. Ever seen a cat being carried in a baby carrier at the grocery store? A cat buckled into a car seat? Three cats sitting through storytime? It's all there. (Just a heads up: A few of the videos have explicit language, so parents might want to do a preview before watching with little ones.) You can follow the couple and their cats on all their social media channels, including Instagram and YouTube if TikTok isn't your thing, here.

If you weren't a cat person before, these videos might change your mind. Fair warning, however: Getting a cat because you want them to do things like this would be a mistake. Cats do what they want to do, and no one can predict what weird traits they will have. Even if you raise them from kittenhood, they're still unpredictable and weird.

And honestly, we wouldn't have them any other way.

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We're redefining what normal means in these uncertain times, and although this is different for all of us, love continues to transform us for the better.

Love is what united Marie-Claire and David Archbold, who met while taking a photography class. "We went into the darkroom to see what developed," they joke—and after a decade of marriage, they know firsthand the deep commitment and connection romantic love requires.

All photos courtesy of Marie-Claire and David Archbold

However, their relationship became even sweeter when they adopted James: a little boy with a huge heart.

In the United States alone, there are roughly 122,000 children awaiting adoption according to the latest report from the U.S Department of Health and Human Services. While the goal is always for a child to be parented by and stay with their biological family, that is not always a possibility. This is where adoption offers hope—not only does it create new families, it gives birth parents an avenue through which to see their child flourish when they are not able to parent. For the right families, it's a beautiful thing.

The Archbolds knew early on that adoption was an option for them. David has three daughters from a previous marriage, but knowing their family was not yet complete, the couple embarked on a two-year journey to find their match. When the adoption agency called and told them about James, they were elated. From the moment they met him, the Archbolds knew he was meant to be part of their family. David locked eyes with the brown-eyed baby and they stared at each other in quiet wonder for such a long time that the whole room fell silent. "He still looks at me like that," said David.

The connection was mutual and instantaneous—love at first sight. The Archbolds knew that James was meant to be a part of their family. However, they faced significant challenges requiring an even deeper level of commitment due to James' medical condition.

James was born with congenital hyperinsulinism, a rare condition that causes his body to overproduce insulin, and within 2 months of his birth, he had to have surgery to remove 90% of his pancreas. There was a steep learning curve for the Archbolds, but they were already in love, and knew they were committed to the ongoing care that'd be required of bringing James into their lives. After lots of research and encouragement from James' medical team, they finally brought their son home.

Today, three-year-old James is thriving, filled with infectious joy that bubbles over and touches every person who comes in contact with him. "Part of love is when people recognize that they need to be with each other," said his adoptive grandfather. And because the Archbolds opted for an open adoption, there are even more people to love and support James as he grows.

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You know that feeling you get when you walk into a classroom and see someone else's stuff on your desk?

OK, sure, there are no assigned seats, but you've been sitting at the same desk since the first day and everyone knows it.

So why does the guy who sits next to you put his phone, his book, his charger, his lunch, and his laptop in the space that's rightfully yours? It's annoying!

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There have been many iconic dance routines throughout film history, but how many have the honor being called "the greatest" by Fred Astaire himself?

Fayard and Harold Nicholas, known collectively as the Nicholas Brothers, were arguably the best at what they did during their heyday. Their coordinated tap routines are legendary, not only because they were great dancers, but because of their incredible ability to jump into the air and land in the splits. Repeatedly. From impressive heights.

Their most famous routine comes from the movie "Stormy Weather." As Cab Calloway sings "Jumpin' Jive," the Nicholas Brothers make the entire set their dance floor, hopping and tapping from podium to podium amongst the musicians, dancing up and down stairs and across the top of a piano.

But what makes this scene extra impressive is that they performed it without rehearsing it first and it was filmed in one take—no fancy editing room tricks to bring it all together. This fact was confirmed in a conversation with the brothers in a Chicago Tribune article in 1997, when they were both in their 70s:

"Would you believe that was one of the easiest things we ever did?" Harold told the paper.

"Did you know that we never even rehearsed that number?" added Fayard.

"When it came time to do that part, (choreographer) Nick Castle said: 'Just do it. Don`t rehearse it, just do it.' And so we did it—in one little take. And then he said: 'That's it—we can't do it any better than that.'"

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