As you review your bucket list, there are certain places you may want to prioritize visiting. Rising sea levels, earthquakes, floods, global warming and other natural phenomenon are threatening cities around the world.
Definitely add these 10 places to visit to your bucket list before they disappear. These popular tourist locations are at-risk from the effects of Mother Nature.
The city of water had been one of the most visited cities in Europe. Connected by canals and bridges, it’s a place like no other that will induce wonder into your heart. However, this beautiful city faces threats from the rising sea level. Already actively pumping water out to stay ‘afloat’, there is no telling what the future holds for this magnificent UNESCO world heritage site. Unfortunately, this is a geological phenomenon. Venice is dragged down as the tectonic plate it resides on is subducting.
Another victim of rising sea level, a large part of the Netherlands is actually below sea level already! Increased urbanization also causes cities to subsidize at the same time, making flooding an additional risk. Large-scale coastal protection plans are currently being implemented. But you still might want to give the Netherlands a visit sooner rather than later.
Even the Dead Sea is not exempt from being claimed by Mother Nature. In theory a lake, the Dead Sea has 9.6 times the salinity of normal ocean and is the home to the world’s first health resorts. It has an illustrious history, providing minerals for the surrounding cultures, including Egyptian empires. Currently, it is dropping on average one meter per year in sea level. Sink holes begun to appear as water from River Jordan, its only source, is diverted from it. If you want to make a pilgrimage to this natural wonder, you’ll want to do it soon.
San Francisco’s famous hills are also under the disappearing threat in a city that is pledged by both earthquakes and land subsidence. Due to poor land management and stripping of soils, the subsidence rates have increased in the past few decades at an alarming rate. Another threat comes from the San Andreas Fault. If the recent movie isn’t foreboding enough already, it’s well known in the geological world that the longer the period between earthquakes, the more violent it could be.
The effect of global warming is still fresh on everyone’s mind. Many of the world’s low lying areas are on the verge of disappearing. The Bahamas are commonly considered paradise. With their secluded location, crystal clear water and swaying palm trees, it’s not hard to see why. And honeymooners would be definitely be sad to see it disappear under the sea.
While most people are concerned about rising sea level, it’s easy to forget the source of the melting glacier is rapidly changing too. The West Antarctic Ice Sheet is marine-based and is melting at an alarming rate. One of the most remote and unique ecosystems on Earth, Antarctica is home to over 700 endemic species (not found anywhere else). It is also the sole breeding ground of Leopard, Crabeater and Ross Seals. Although expeditions to this environmentally-sensitive region are restricted, there are still chances to go.
Guangzhou’s home to the fertile, populated Pearl River Delta is increasingly at risk. Guangzhou is also one of the world’s most flood-prone cities. It is a toxic cocktail of urbanization, global warming and overpopulation. The area is under the constant threat of typhoons during the long summer season, as global sea temperature continues to increase. Photos of citizens dragging themselves through the muddy water are becoming the new normal. Make sure you visit it outside of the typhoon season!
Great Barrier Reef
The Great Barrier Reef is becoming rapidly more endangered due to ocean acidification and global warming. Bleaching of corals not only reduces habitats for organisms, but also along the entire food chain. Book your tickets to see one of the most delicate ecosystems in the world before it is gone.
Gaining popularity over the last few decades, Vietnam has been thrust into the limelight, especially for backpackers. With long stretches of gorgeous beaches, amazing food and friendly people, what’s not to like? However, the influx of tourists, rising sea level and flooding are all constantly threatening the beautiful country.
The perfect tropical blend of Caribbean and Spanish culture brimming with history, great food with emerald green hills and sparkling blue sea, Cuba’s charm is hard to resist. Sharing the same slice of paradise as the Bahamas, Cuba is under the threat of sea level rise as well. So if you want to dance to some soul music, sip delicious cocktails by the night and soak up culture by the day, head to Cuba before it’s too late.