15 Most extraordinary natural phenomena

Sailing stones

Back in the pre-industrial era, it was nothing special to be a nature lover. Back then, whether you loved it or not, you had to spend most of your time with nature. However, it is no more possible now. We live in a world of triumphant materialism with most of the world’s population living in the cities. Now nature doesn’t present its beauty to us, we have to go out and seek it. Every natural place has something unique to offer to us. However, there are certain places where this unique is so unique that it completely blows our mind. These are the places where you see the most extraordinary natural phenomena.

15 – Most extraordinary natural phenomena

There are beautiful natural events occurring all around the world. These events, derived from natural phenomenon, are unusual because of their rareness. Some of the events are so spectacular that they simply mesmerize us, and truly describe the uniqueness of nature and its entire machinery. Here is a list of 15 extraordinary natural phenomena.

1. The red tide

The red tide

The red tide never ceases to amaze anyone. The phytoplankton in the ocean looks unusual in the day with thick algal growth. However, in few parts of California and the entire bay of Puerto Rico, the algal species Noctiluca scintillans glows with blue luminescence. The ocean appears to be lit just like the blue back light of the latest phones. If you go close to the place where the waves hit the rocks, you will find the rocks too glowing blue in dark.

2. Firefox


It sounds like the browser name that we all fondly use but the browser was named after this exotic variety of glowing mushrooms. The mushroom variety grows in dark area with moist woods. Therefore, it is abundantly available throughout the tropical rainforests of Sao Paulo in Brazil. The greenish glowing bioluminescent mushrooms makes the forest creepier as well as mesmerizingly beautiful.

3. Fiery rainbows

Fiery rainbow

These rainbows are the spectacular phenomena that rule the high altitude cirrus clouds. These extraordinary natural phenomena are created when the high altitude clouds get condensed to form an abundance of ice crystals that glows with rainbow lights refracting the sunlight. The phenomena are observed at all high altitude regions near the equator as the sun and the clouds need to be sufficiently high. However, the phenomena can be observed throughout the world in high altitude regions.

4. Glowing clouds

Glowing clouds

The equator region has fiery rainbows but the far regions have other spectacular events. Glowing pearl clouds in the northern skies are indeed mesmerizing. These high altitude clouds glow even in onset of darkness. Actually, the sun may be down the horizon for people living in the ground but the sun rays still hit the clouds due to the round shape of the earth and high altitude of the clouds.

5. Snow wheels

Snow wheel

In high altitude areas with lots of snowy mountains, the snow wheels are formed. These snow wheels are formed by natural friction. When a cloud hits the mountain and condenses into snow, the peaks are flooded with mass of snow. These snow rolls down the icy mountain surface. The friction causes the snow to form a wheel like structure while the icy temperature makes it solid by freezing water formed with the frictional heat.

6. Raining fishes

Raining fishes

You certainly have heard about raining water or even snowfall but surely, you never have heard about raining fishes. There are certain instances when clouds actually rained fishes on mainland near ocean. Actually, the phenomenon is unusual but very easy to explain. In vast ocean areas, high temperature of sun makes a low-pressure zone that sucks out smaller ocean animals such are crustaceans and fishes in the stormy clouds. These clouds travel to the mainland with these small creatures and condense to form the raining fish phenomenon.

7. Fancy stormy clouds

Fancy stormy clouds

These clouds look ferocious with storm alarm but often they do not result in any storm or even rain. Actually, these clouds are similar to the normal clouds. However, when they are caught up in high altitude jet streams, they form fancy shapes. You may not feel the wind but actually, these winds in high altitude carry the cloud out of your area.

8. The green flash

The green flash

The phenomenon is similar to the rainbow formation where you can see a green flash when sun sets or rise from horizon. The sunrays in horizon have to travel a long part of atmosphere to reach the eyes that causes the prismatic effect resulting in this green glow. It is very rare event with only few lucky witnesses.

9. Dual Rainbow

Dual Rainbow

The event is unusual but the phenomenon is the same prismatic effect of sunlight on water droplet in the atmosphere. It is a very rare phenomenon when sunlight actually refracts twice with dual layers of droplets to form the dual rainbow.

10. Continuous lightning

Continuous lightning

The phenomenon is still unexplainable but the occurrence of the event is very frequent in Venezuela. The clouds over the Catatoumbe river mouth and Maracaibo Lake have clouds that have frequent lightning. The lightning moves in a series between clouds.

Read More: Catatumbo lighting tours best time, accommodations and more

11. Ice disks

Ice disks

An ice disk or ice pan is another fascinating natural phenomenon, which occurs in slowly flowing water in frosty climates. These are thin and circular in shape that moves freely along with the flow of water current. Scandinavia, North America and occasionally in Wales as well as in England, the ice circles can be seen. Formation of ice disks can be defined as the flowing water that generates a rotational shear force that cuts the side of a large piece of ice and shapes it into a disk.

12. Aurora Borialis

Aurora Borialis

Aurora Borealis is one of the most beautiful naturally occurring phenomena in the form of colorful lighting the sky at high altitudes, also termed as Northern Lights. It is named after Aurora, a Roman Goddess and Boreas, Greece name of northern wind. This phenomenon is caused by particles from the sun (Known as a photon) approaching toward the earth with the solar wind. When these photons strike the earth’s magnetic field, different gaseous atoms and molecules get excited and when they come to their original state, they emit a beautiful combination of light. Oxygen atoms emit green and red light whereas nitrogen atoms give a blue and red glow. In the season of spring, when these lights are very intense, crackling sounds can be heard. This noise is actually the earth’s magnetic field, but one should have to be far away from a city and at a calm place to hear it.

13. Penitentes


Penitentes are wonderful snow formation normally occurred at high altitude. These structures take a shape of tall thin blades of compact snow, which may be as tall as a human. Penitentes are resulted by random dimples formed by the sun rays due to uneven melting of ice. The curved surfaces of the troughs concentrate the sun rays speeding up the sublimation in the depression and they further deepen into long troughs forming hardened structures of several meters of height.

14. Sailing stones

Sailing stones

The mysterious sailing stones or moving rocks found in racetrack playa, packed mud-deserts of Death Valley. The stones of some hundreds of ponds slowly move across the surface of the playa, leaving a track behind, without the involvement of human or animal. The force behind the movement of these rocks is still not established and under subjects of research. After comparing the two independently moving rocks, it has been found that the track and length may be different whereas it is sometimes parallel. Physicists have denied the theory that the wind blowing hundred miles per hour may be causative agent for the movement of these several pounds weighted mysterious rocks.

15. Columnar Basalt

Columnar Basalt

Columnar Basalts are very hard stones equally shaped in a pillar form. These extraordinary natural phenomena are shaped into the columnar form due to a significant force developed during the rapid cooling of lava evolved from a volcano. Usually, the shape and texture of basalt is determined by the way and place where the lava erupted. Some of the famous columnar basalts formed are Samson’s ribs, Devil’s Postpile, Giant’s Causeway, Narooma Basalt (Narooma, New South Wales, Australia), and Isle of Staffa.

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