Take a midnight stroll through the golden foliage-filled woods this fall and you might discover foxfire, a type of fungus that primarily grows in decaying wood. Also called fairy fire, the fungi creates light during a chemical reaction that occurs when the quick-growing, healthy fungal cells consume wood and the oxidative enzyme luciferase reacts with luciferin. Though air pollution and other factors can affect the foxfire’s brightness, some say the fungus’ bioluminescence is so bright that one could read a book with only the fungus’ light. Foxfire is the informal term for many different bioluminescent fungi including Panellus stipticus, which grows as small clusters of glowing mushrooms.
Cascading for 226 feet over mossy basalt, the Proxy Falls serve as one of Oregon’s most photographed land features. With views like this, it’s obvious why.
Could this place be any more stunning? Beyond its stellar bends, the Saar River region is home to quite a few Riesling wine orchards.
Located in Siberia, Laka Baikal is the largest freshwater lake on the planet that contains approximately 20 percent of the Earth’s freshwater. Apart from being the oldest lake in the world at over 25 million years old, Lake Baikal is also home to over two thousand varieties of flora and fauna, of which almost 1,600 are endemic to the lake.
The water of Lake Baikal is renowned for being some of the clearest in the world. When the lake freezes during the winter, an amazing phenomena takes place: large shards of transparent ice form on the surface of the lake, giving the amazing appearance of turquoise ice.
Set aside by Spanish king Alfonso XII in 1876, El Yunque is the only tropical rainforest in the US National Forest System, as well as one of the oldest examples of reserves in the Western hemisphere. It was a good move, too: the rainforest is home to some of the world’s rarest and most unique flora and fauna known to man.