They have always been places in which particular atmospheres hover and are often home to myths and legends, thanks to their mysterious and suggestive aspect: the forests they recall the fairy tales we listened to as children but also some of our worst nightmares. Some are made up of dense vegetation, others continue for miles and miles hosting only one species of trees. They are the home of many animals that find their refuge in ravines, caves, holes and elevations created by roots and branches.
they are also a very important asset for our life, they are the green lung of the planet, so much so that an international day is also dedicated to them, which is celebrated on 21 March. We have selected the 15 most beautiful and special forests in the world, to remind us once again that nature gives us incredible shows, to which we owe only a little respect.
15 - Black Forest, Germany
The Black Forest stretches along a mountain range and is located in the southwestern corner of Germany in the German federal state of Baden-Württemberg. This ancient mountain range is famous for its legends and for the black firs which make up a large part of the landscape. The Romans called it Silva Nigra or Silva Carbonara due to the dense vegetation that prevents light from penetrating between the branches.
It is the largest forest in Germany and also the most fascinating, much appreciated by the Germans that they also give the same name to a typical cake.
14 - Hallerbos Forest, Belgium
This forest is located right on the border of Flanders and Wallonia, in the municipality of Halle, about 30 minutes south of Brussels. From late April to early May a few acres of forest are covered with a beautiful carpet of wild bluebell hyacinths. The spectacle for visitors is breathtaking, it seems to be the protagonists of a fairy tale.
13 - Rata Forest, New Zealand
Remember the Treebeard who starred in an episode of The Lord of the Rings? Rata is a very common type of tree in New Zealand, with a typical "gnarled" shape. This forest is located on the island of Enderby, which presents itself on its own full of gnarled trunks, whose branches create a fairy tale tangle.
There are plenty of trails in the forest and on the island itself, allowing visitors to immerse themselves in this book-like atmosphere.
12 - Stanton Moor, UK
This beautiful forest is located on Stanton Moor in the north of England. The moor houses four mysterious stone circles dating back to the Bronze Age, the most famous of these circles is nicknamed "Nine Ladies", the others are called "Stanton Moor I" (the Northern circle), "Stanton Moor III" (the central circle) and "Stanton Moor IV "(the circle of the South). These other circles are largely abandoned and destroyed, only a few stones remain. Although some of these formations are of natural origin, there are many legends surrounding the forest and its stones, almost all related to Druids and to the cult of some ancient divinity, even if there is no archaeological evidence to support this thesis.
11 - Tsingy integral nature reserve, Madagascar
Known as the Forest of knives, the Tsingy Forest is an amazing area that is made up of sharp limestone rocks that protrude from the earth and even reach a height of 70 meters. Although it is perhaps one of the most dangerous national parks you can visit, it is really worth it!
In fact, this locality has some unique characteristics: in addition to the limestone conformations, in fact, it is the home of mangrove woods, of many species of wild birds, of different populations of lemurs. The reserve was also declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1990.
10 - Otzarreta Forest, Spain
Located in the Basque Country in Spain, the Otzarreta Forest represents the most fascinating and spectacular part of the Gorbea Natural Park. The ancient trees, along with the foggy atmosphere, give this forest a truly mystical air.
9 - Caddo Lake, Lousiana - Texas (USA)
This forest takes its name from some populations of Native Americans who inhabited the area, called Caddo. It covers an area of 25.400 acres and is internationally protected under the treaty of Ramsar. Caddo Lake it is the largest cypress forest in the world, the presence of the waters of the lake actually make the area a bit disturbing, even if the atmosphere is undoubtedly magical.
8 - Bamboo forest of Arashimaya Sagano, Japan
To the west of Kyoto there is a real green district, that of Arashiyama. It was originally an imperial place of relaxation, located away from the main court in central Kyoto, but the palaces were later converted into Buddhist temples and monasteries. Today visitors go to this enchanted place to explore these temples and for the amazing bamboo forest of the area. A well constructed and maintained path winds through the green statuary trunks, that seem to sigh and whisper in the wind.
7 - Crooked forest of Gryfino, Poland
This forest consists of about 400 trees curved in a truly unique way. They are very normal pines which, under normal conditions, would not have anything special. Instead they are all curved in the same, odd way. Nothing is known about the origins of this forest, the causes of the curvature of the pines remain, even today, a mistery: human intervention or a freak of nature?
6 - The submerged forest, Kaindy lake, Kazakhstan
What if one of the most impressive forests in the world was even underwater? This is precisely the case evergreen Asian spruce forest, submerged by the waters of Lake Kaindy, in the Tien Shan mountains, in Kazakhstan.
In 1911, an earthquake caused a large landslide that blocked the entrance to a canyon, which was subsequently filled by the waters of a river. The name of the lake, keindy, really means "falling rocks". The water here is very cold (the lake is about 2000 meters above sea level) and this prevents the submerged trees from decaying. The tops of the fir trees emerge from the surface of the lake, creating a unique and surreal effect.
5 - Yili Apricot Valley, China
In the northwest of China is Xinjiang province, and in the northwest of Xinjiang is Yili. It is a remote and difficult to reach area, but that doesn't stop visitors from going to enjoy the show. This valley, in fact, has been attracting intrepid tourists for years who are eager to admire the majestic expanse of pink and white, typical coloring of apricot blossoms that bloom every spring.
This area is home to the largest apricot forest in Xinjiang, the natural spectacle begins in June and continues until the end of September.
4 - Thorny forest, Madagascar
On an island full of strange and wonderful living beings, the thorny forest is without a doubt the most unusual ecosystem of Madagascar. Endemic to the south of the island, the forest is distinguished by plants belonging to species of the didiereaceae family, which represents 95% of the species found in this particular ecosystem. To see they are very similar to cacti, although the thorns here arise directly to protect the leaves, which in turn grow directly on the branches of the plant. While being very important for the life of numerous living species, such as the ring-tailed lemur or the dancing lemur, the forest is endangered due to deforestation, due to the manufacture of coal and wood for construction.
3 - Goblin Forest, New Zealand
The name speaks for itself: the scary Goblin Forest is truly unique and if you are lucky enough to visit it, you will never see anything like it again anywhere else. The trees appear covered with moss in a really disturbing way: the area is often foggy and humid, for this reason the moss almost completely covers the vegetation, creating the effect that recalls the Goblin monsters.
2 - The Dancing Forest, between Lithuania and Russia
Enchanted forest or dancing forest, it seems that the name by which this wooded area is commonly known is quite clear. Here, pines and firs do not grow straight as usual, but they take on strange and bizarre forms: the trunks seem to dance, twist and tangle on themselves, stand out against the sky zigzagging or crawl on the ground like huge snakes. The silence that reigns in this place is almost otherworldly and hypnotizing, so much so that even the birds do not dare to make their song heard, perhaps fearing to break some spell.
The explanation to the mystery of the dancing trees It has not yet been found, but legends and fantastic stories related to this place abound, handed down by the elders of a small Orthodox community living near the forest.
La legend tells that many years ago a young and beautiful girl called Predislava lived here, who one day began to be courted by a prince of the Prussi. He was a pagan while she was a Christian: she devised a stratagem to convert her future husband, inviting him right into the depths of the forest. Here, with its sweet song, made the trees and other plants dance, until the Prince, convinced of the power of the Christian faith, was converted and had all his people converted. When all the Prussis were baptized, the trees stopped in the very bizarre positions they are in today.
1 - The Painted Forest, Maui - Hawaii (USA)
It is hard to believe your eyes as you walk through this forest: along the way you will find groves of Rainbow Eucalyptus, a very special species of plant found only on this island of Hawaii. As the name suggests, due to the bark peeling off in the summer, this tree takes on many different colors, with shades ranging from red, to yellow, green and brown. When the trees are wet with rain, everything appears even more brilliant and incredible.