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Heroes

See 9 dazzling photos of the world's most colorful places, including some close to home.

As far as planets go, Earth is pretty f@#$ing awesome.

We've got flowing freshwater, ice cream, Adele, and a few billion of the coolest people you'll ever meet.


Suck it, Mars. Photo provided by NASA.

Not to mention, this place is pretty darn gorgeous.

From soaring vistas to jagged mountains, rushing waterfalls, and hills that go on forever, you don't have to look far to find jaw-dropping beauty.

Here are nine of the world's most visually stunning places, alive in vibrant, eye-popping hues.

1. The Sunset Lake hot spring in Yellowstone National Park

Photo by Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty Images.

Since a large portion of Yellowstone sits inside the exploded crater of a volcano, the park is home to 500 geysers and over 10,000 thermal features, including Sunset Lake. The colors in this geothermal pool are caused by microbes like bacteria and algae that thrive in the water.

2. A magic carpet of moss phlox flowers in Chichibu, Saitama Prefecture, Japan

Photo by Koichi Kamoshida/Getty Images.

Hitsujiyama Park explodes with color as visitors stroll through fields of dazzling moss phlox flowers. The park boasts roughly 400,000 of the candy-colored blooms.

3. This golf course (which helped me understand why people might like golf) in Trou d'Eau Douce, Mauritius

Le Touessrok Golf Course and resort is nestled on the beautiful island on the left. Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images.

Yes, this is an aerial shot of a golf course on the picturesque island of Mauritius. If more golf courses looked like this, it might just make it interesting enough to watch.

4. This lunar-looking Tuscan landscape near Siena, Italy

Photo by Fabio Muzzi/AFP/Getty Images.

The Crete Senesi vistas are some of the most beautiful landscapes in all of Italy. Dotted with farms, stoic trees, and even a medieval castle or two, these rolling hills are sure to take your breath away.

5. Rapeseed fields in bloom in Luoping, China

Photo by STR/AFP/Getty Images.

Rapeseed plants are used to make cooking oil and livestock feed. They're not to be confused canola plants, which also boast a bright yellow color. The vistas of Luoping are a popular tourist destination.

6. Lesser flamingos chilling on Lake Natron in the Arusha Region of Tanzania

Photo by Tony Karumba/AFP/Getty Images.

No, lesser flamingos don't have self-esteem problems; that's just the name for the endangered salmon-colored birds who make their home in East Africa's Rift Valley lakes. Lake Natron is one of the primary breeding grounds for lesser flamingoes. Potential spoiler: The Tanzanian government may build a mine nearby, which conservationists fear would disrupt breeding.

7. An evening commute under flowering cherry trees in Bonn, Germany

Photo by Rolf Vennenbernd/AFP/Getty Images.

A tunnel of gorgeous cherry trees in Bonn. Much like the cherry blossoms in Washington, D.C., many flock to this German city to see their enchanted flowering during their two- to three-week bloom every April.

8. So pretty. So salty. The Uyuni salt flats of southwestern Bolivia

Photo by Martin Bernetti/AFP/Getty Images.

Tourists, photographers, and sodium enthusiasts flock to Salar de Uyuni to get a glimpse of the beautiful landscapes. The flats contain an estimated 10 billion tons of salt and are visited by 60,000 tourists each year, many of whom capture some pretty kickass photos.

9. Sunflowers on sunflowers on sunflowers in North Dakota

Photo by Karen Bleier/AFP/Getty Images.

Fly over at your peril — the Midwest is home to friendly people, innovative hotdish, and sweeping fields that are tailor-made for getting lost in. Save this picture to your desktop to remind yourself that winter is only temporary.

The best part? These beautiful places are only the tip of the iceberg.

Actual iceberg tips, because even those are ridiculously good-looking. Photo by Marcel Mochet/AFP/Getty Images.

This post could be literally millions of photos long. But instead of over-exerting your scrolling finger, I thought it best to let you go and see all of that beauty and wonder for yourself. This planet is oozing with amazing sights, sounds, tastes, smells, people, and places.

Now get out there and explore the f@#$ out of it.

Education

12 books that people say are life-changing reads

Some books have the power to change how we see ourselves, the world, and each other.

Photo by Ben White on Unsplash

Books are powerful.

As a participant in the Amazon Associates affiliate program, Upworthy may earn proceeds from items purchased that are linked to this article, at no additional cost to you.

Out of all human inventions, books might just be the greatest. That may be a bold statement in the face of computers, the internet and the international space station, but none of those things would be possible without books. The written recording of human knowledge has allowed our advancements in learning to be passed on through generations, not to mention the capturing of human creativity in the form of longform storytelling.

Books have the power to change our lives on a fundamental level, shift our thinking, influence our beliefs, put us in touch with our feelings and help us understand ourselves and one another better.

That's why we asked Upworthy's audience to share a book that changed their life. Thousands of responses later, we have a list of inspiring reads that rose to the top.

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Man teaches people ASL so no child experiences what he did

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Children who are born without the ability to hear often still go through those same stages with the exception of their frequently used words being in sign language. But not all hearing parents know sign language, which can stunt the language skills of their non-hearing child. Ronnie McKenzie is an American Sign Language advocate that uses social media to teach others how to sign so deaf and nonverbal kids don't feel left out.

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Even though it’s 2023 and schools are much more concerned with protecting children from bullying than in the past, parents still have to be aware that kids will be kids, and having a child with a funny name is bound to cause them trouble.

A mother on Reddit is concerned that her future children will have the unfortunate last name of “Butt,” so she asked people on the namenerds forum to help her convince her husband to name their child something different.

(Note: We’re assuming that the person who wrote the post is a woman because their husband is interested in perpetuating the family name, and if it were a same-sex relationship, a husband probably wouldn’t automatically make that assumption.)

"My husband’s last name is Butt. Can someone please help me illuminate to him why this last name is less than ideal,” she asked the forum. “I totally get we can’t shield kids from everything and I understand the whole family ties thing, but c'mon. Am I being unreasonable by suggesting our future kid either take my name, a hybrid, or a new one altogether?"

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Bus driver comes to the rescue for boy who coudn't afford outfit for school's Pajamas Day

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Representative Image from Canva

One thoughtful act can completely turn someone's day around.

On the morning just before Valentine’s Day, school bus driver Larry Farrish Jr. noticed something amiss with Levi, one of his first grade passengers, on route to Engelhard Elementary, part of Jefferson County Public School (JCPS) in Louisville, Kentucky.

On any other day, the boy would greet Farrish with a smile and a wave. But today, nothing. Levi sat down by himself, eyes downcast, no shining grin to be seen. Farrish knew something was up, and decided to inquire.

With a “face full of tears,” as described on the JCPS website, Levi told Farrish that today was “Pajama Day” at school, but he didn’t have any pajamas to wear for the special occasion.
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via Imgur

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The test in question asked kids to solve "5 x 3" using repeated addition. Under this method, the correct answer is "5 groups of 3," not "3 groups of 5." The question is typical of Common Core but has many questioning this type of standardized testing and how it affects learning.

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