10 World’s Most Beautiful Countries People Don’t Know About
All the way back in the 3rd century B.C. Plato said ‘the sense of beauty is itself transient in nature’, which today translates into ‘beauty is in the eye of the beholder’ or one man’s meat is another man’s poison. For that reason, compiling a list of the ten most beautiful countries people don’t know about is doubly difficult as no two people would agree on what beauty is. Our planet is infinitely beautiful, from the pale turquoise sea lapping at a glittering beach in Tahiti to the Northern Lights shifting and shimmering over Iceland, or people watching over a tiny coffee cup in a Parisian cafe, the delights that our world has to offer are almost endless. With travel becoming easier, the recent pandemic notwithstanding, more and more people are exploring the world and discovering for themselves what their idea of beauty is. The travel industry is rife with polls on the matter and it would seem that, although a definitive answer is not possible to the question of which is the most beautiful country in the world, a general consensus is plausible and some names just keep popping up time after time. If you looka the table at the end of this article, you’ll see that we’ve rounded up a few of these polls and you can check out which countries got the most mentions.
What Makes A Country Beautiful?
There are many things that make a country beautiful, from unspoiled countryside to the friendliness of its people. Uniqueness also has a part to play, that and grandeur, scale and contrasts. But then we start getting into subjectives, and again have to ask the question, What is beauty? Well, philosophers have pondered that for millenia so I’m not sure we’ll get to the bottom of it here. You probably know your own taste, no-one is better placed than you to know what lights up your beholden eye; here we offer a few teasers to spark your interest and see if you agree with our choice of the top ten of the world’s most beautiful countries.
A Closer Look At The Most Beautiful Countries In The World
1. Peru – A Hidden Gem In South America / Home Of Amazon Rainforest And Machu Picchu
Say Peru to most people, and they will reply with, ‘Oh! Machu Picchu!’ but there’s so much more to see, not that the Inca ruins aren’t spectacular and an absolute must if you are to visit. The capital city of Lima is delightful. The Colonial old town with its wide, open square, 16th century cathedral and the Museo Larco, home to a collection of pre-Columbian art, are at the heart of a large, busy city. For a quiet escape, the oasis of Huacachina can be found in the heart of the Ica desert, from here you can explore the neighboring dunes, or the rainbow coloured mountain of Vinicunca, close to Machu Picchu.
Best Time Of The Year: Winter (May – September) Summer (December – March)
- Machu Picchu
- Sacred Valley
- Colca Canyon
- The Inca Trail
- Cusco’s Architectural Treasures
- Lake Titicaca
- Lima’s Historic Center
2. Thailand – A Home To Tropical Beaches And Ancient Ruins
Thailand is the jewel in the crown of Southeast Asia. Bangkok, the capital, is a great starting point. Ultra modern buildings nestle against ancient temples and the Chao Phraya River provides riverboat transport through the many canals. With 1,430 islands to explore there is an almost endless choice of which tropical paradise to visit. The incredible karst landscape around Krabi and Phi Phi, made famous by Holywood, will not disappoint while the ancient city of Chiang Mai, situated in the north of the country, is a seat of learning and artistry. The culinary tastes of Thailand are world famous and you’ll be spoilt for choice with the aromas of street vendor’s wares filling the air. Be sure to be respectful when visiting any of the thousands of Buddhist temples and shrines, the spectacular golden or glistening white monuments are well worth it.
- The Grand Palace
- Wat Arun
- Wat Phra Chetuphon
- Railay Beach
- Chatuchak Weekend Market
- Koh Phi Phi
- Sukhothai Old City
- Historic City Of Ayutthaya
- Floating Market
3. Japan – A Home To Sakura Blossom Season And Onsen Hot Springs
Japan is a country of efficiency, tradition and innovation, attributes which it manages to offer simultaneously with grace and style. The sublime natural beauty of the countryside is breathtaking, if your visit is timed right, witnessing the eruption of the cherry blossom is a wondrous sight, and Kyoto’s Arashiyama bamboo forest offers a calm sanctuary away from the excitement of the city. The culinary delights are well worth exploring, from street food to Michelin stars. The country is punctuated with centuries-old shrines and temples while Tokyo offers a vision of the ultra modern and the future.
Best Time Of The Year: Winter ( January – February)
- Mount Fuji
- Imperial Palace
- Osaka Castle
- Nara Park
- Snow Monkey Park
- Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park
- Historic Kyoto
- The Island Shrine Of Itsukushima
4. Iceland – The Land of Fire and Ice / A Home To Northern Lights And Blue Lagoon
Iceland offers a wealth of unique experiences. The majority of the country’s population, which is less than that of New Orleans, live in and around Reykjavik. With the city’s museums and galleries, its imposing concrete Hallgrimskirkja church and colorful houses, it’s a great place to base yourself before setting off to visit the island’s spectacular landscape. From ice caves to lava fields, geysers to glaciers, Iceland is an explorer’s paradise; it’s possible to take in the whole thing on a circular trip around the 828 mile coast road, and be sure to relax in the hot springs after your trip.
Best Time Of The Year: Summer (July – August)
- Whale Watching, Reykjavik
- Soak In The Blue Lagoon, Grindavik
- Watch Spectacular Geysers
- The Northern Lights, Aurora Borealis
- Maelifell Volcano & myrdalsjokull Glacier Park
- Askja Caldera
- Dettifoss Waterfall
- Visit Iceland’s Quirky Museums
5. Kenya – World’s Best Safari Destination
Kenya is home to the famous Maasai Mara Reserve, a protected savannah home to lions, cheetahs, elephants, zebras and hippos. But that is not all that Kenya has to offer. From the sparkling white beaches on the Indian Ocean to the spectacular Great Rift Valley and the peak of Mount Kenya, Africa’s second highest mountain, there’s a lot to take in. The capital city of Nairobi offers a modern central base and is a great jumping off point to explore the rest of the country.
Best Time Of The Year: Dry Season (July – September)
- Hell’s Gate National Park
- Lamu Island
- Tsavo National Park
- Lake Nakuru
- Nairobi National Park
- Mount Kenya
- Samburu National Reserve
6. Namibia – A Home To The Highest Dunes In The World
Namibia takes its name from the Namib desert, which stretches for 1,200 miles along the Atlantic coast where the rolling golden dunes meet the sea; it’s the world’s oldest desert and is thought to have existed for nearly 80 million years. There is a wealth of wildlife living in the savannas and Caprivi Strip wetlands of Namibia and it’s home to the largest cheetah population of any of the African nations. The capital, Windhoek, and coastal town Swakopmund contain German colonial-era buildings, which are set off against the other modern buildings in the cities. It is a country of great beauty and vast spaces.
Best Time Of The Year: Spring (July – October)
- Skeleton Coast
- Caprivi Strip
- Cape Cross
- Fish River Canyon
7. Greece – A Home To Olympic Games And The Birthplace Of Democracy
Greece is an ancient and noble country with a history stretching back to eight centuries B.C. with 6,000 islands, 227 of which are inhabited. A famous landmark is the Parthenon, perched on the Acropolis of Athen, which is difficult to miss when visiting the capitol. Greece has an island for every taste, from the partying Mykanos to the eclectic Nisyros or the peace and tranquility of Lemnos, whatever you’re looking for, you’ll find it in Greece. Don’t forget to take your camera as the picturesque views of whitewashed villages perched over the sparkling Mediterranean sea are sights you’ll want to keep with you for a long time.
Best Time Of The Year: Spring ( April – June) Autumn (September – October)
- Acropolis Of Athens
- Acropolis Museum
- Rhodes Town
8. New Zealand – Paradise Of The Pacific
New Zealand may be dwarfed by its nearby antipodean cousin but it packs a punch when it comes to beauty, culture and artistic identity. The country is made up of two major islands and 600 smaller islands, a fraction of which are inhabited. The natural beauty of New Zealand takes some beating, turquoise lakes reflect mountain peaks lined with fields of purple and pink wild flowers, truly a sight to behold. The capitol, Wellington, is home to the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa whose exhibits pay homage to the rich cultural history of the Māori people and demonstrates their importance to the nation of New Zealand.
Best Time Of The Year: Summer (December – March)
- Fiordland National Park
- Bay Of Islands
- Lake Taupo
- Coromandel Peninsula
9. Chile – The Mysterious Easter Island
Chile greedily hugs the Pacific Ocean’s coastline, stretching for over 6,000km down the western side of South America. With such long distances, Chile’s geography, culture and climate are pretty diverse. From the glacial fjords in Patagonia to the country’s world renown vineyards of Elqui Valley, you’ll need to spend some time here to say you’ve really seen it all. Santiago, the capitol, offers views of glistening skyscrapers set off against the snow capped peaks of the Andes, a view you’ll see nowhere else. The Lauca National Park is a haven for wildlife with over 130 species of animals including alpacas, pumas, flamingos, and foxes and the beautiful Chungará Lake.
Best Time Of The Year: Autumn (September – November) Spring (March – May)
- Torres Del Paine National Park
- Marble Caves
- Cape Horn
- Valle De La Luna
- Easter Island & Rapa Nui National Park
- Lauca National Park
- Los Pinguinos Natural Movement
10. Italy – A Home To Renaissance Era And Pizza
It’s hard to know where to start when talking about Italy so let’s start with Rome, the ancient city and the birthplace of the Western world, built on seven hills it’s a glorious mix of old and new, with sights such as the Coliseum, the Trevi fountain and the very modern Museo Nazionale delle Arti del XXI. The north of the country offers such delights as Milan, Lake Garda and Venice while the south boasts Capri, Naples and the Amalfi Coast. The whole country often looks like a film set, breathtakingly beautiful villages etched onto the mediterranean hills. You can’t talk about Italy without talking about food, pizza and pasta lead the way but are by no means all there is on offer, and don’t forget dessert, Italian Gelato is world class or choose the cheese board, you won’t be disappointed.
Best Time Of The Year: Spring (March -May) And Autumn (September-November)
- The Vatican
- The Grand Canal In Venice
- Leaning Tower Of Pisa
- Vatican City
- Lake Como
- The Uffizi Gallery In Florence
- Cinque Terre
- Florence Duomo Santa Del Fiore
- Trevi Fountain
- Amalfi Coast
- Roman Forum
Where Will Your Next Vacation Be?
So, where will your next holiday be?
Somewhere steeped in history in Europe maybe?
Or perhaps a trip to the tropical paradise of Thailand?
Or maybe an exhilarating safari in Kenya?
Your next holiday ought to be in one of these naturally stunning countries in the world, though beauty is in the eye of the beholder, you may find another more beautiful country from this list. Whichever it may be, we hope you enjoyed our blog and if you are ever planning to visit Thailand, or better yet, relocating to Thailand, then make sure to check out our tips on living in Thailand. You might just find them useful.