Most Beautiful Mountain Views on Earth
People climb mountains for the rare chance to enjoy bird's-eye views of the world below. Looking down into valleys, over clouds and across great expanses of land, the climbs can be strenuous but are definitely worth the reward.
But for those who aren't exactly ready to scale Everest, here's a collection of images that showcase the best mountaintop views around the world. It's all about perspective, after all.
Canion do Funil, Brazil
Deep within Brazil is Presidente Kubitschek in the State of Minas Gerais.
Here, you can hike Canion do Funil and experience these amazing views in person.
Umpqua Hot Spring, Oregon
Found in the national forest of the same name, three cascading pools welcome hikers — clothing optional!
Sharp Top Mountain, Virginia
Virginia's Blue Ridge mountains feature many outstanding views, but Sharp Top is renowned in Lynchburg for its sunrise and sunset hikes.
Great Dividing Range, Australia
Australia's largest mountain range can be found along the eastern coast.
Mount Cordeaux, where this shot was captured, can be found at Cunningham's Gap and gives hikers views to the south.
Val d'Isere, France
The French ski resort town provides spectacular views any time of year.
Located near the Vanoise National Park, you can even ski in the summer from Grande Motte glacier.
Rainbow Mountain, China
It's mountains like these that make one succumb to Mother Nature in awe.
These colorful mountains can be found in Zhangye Danxia Landform Geological Park in northwest China's Gansu province.
Lake Lookout, Austria
In western Austria, Vorarlberg is a ski resort destination that borders Lake Constance.
Cable cars will take you to the hiking and ski runs found on Mt. Pfander, which has amazing views.
El Chalten, Argentina
El Chalten is the gateway into Los Glaciares National Park in Patagonia.
At night, the stars can be seen by the thousands.
Northern Italy's alpine mountain range features rugged peaks, the tallest of which is 10,964 feet.
The destination spans nearly 10,000 square miles and is a hiker's and skier's paradise.
Mt. Evans, Colorado
You can reach the 14,264-foot summit by hike or by car via the Scenic Byway.
It's one of the highest peaks in the Rocky Mountains, and the road is the highest paved in North America.
Cordillera Blanca, Peru
Within Huascaran National Park, the "White Range" in the Andes have peaks reaching more than 9,600 feet into the sky.
Glacial lakes set in the hills are turquoise in color because they are so pristine.
The tallest peak on Norway's Moskenesoya island is 3,375 feet above the Lofoten archipelago.
Pirin Mountain, Bulgaria
The tallest mountain in Bulgaria gets its name for an ancient god and, with views like these, is certainly heaven.
Popovo Lake is the largest of lakes in the mountains.
Rainbow Basin, California
It's easy to see how Rainbow Basin got its name.
Part of the Calico Peaks found in the Mojave Desert, Rainbow Basin Natural Area is a National Natural Landmark.
Wallflower Hall, India
Not all mountain views require a hike. Some, you can enjoy from the rooftop of Oberoi Hotels & Resorts' Wildflower Hall, which overlooks the Himalayas.
The Shimla resort was the former home of Lord Kitchener and is now a five-star hotel.
But the best views of the Himalayas are within the mountains on foot.
Great Smoky Mountains, Tennessee
This mountain range is home to one of the most popular national parks in the U.S.
It's especially beautiful when the autumn leaves change from green to red and gold hues.
Les Houches, France
A famous European mountain, Mont Blanc (White Mountain) lies in the Alps where France, Switzerland and Italy meet.
And nearby Les Houches is where you set off to explore this mountain.
While Arches National Park is not a mountain, its sandstone arches and carved landscape makes a unique mountainous landscape.
At 4,605 feet, Zugspitze is Germany's tallest peak.
It is said you can see the mountaintops of 400 different peaks from its top on a clear day.
Koolau Mountain Range, Hawaii
Hawaii's mountainous landscape provides 564 hiking trails across its 13 mountains.
This one on Oahu’s Windward Coast is one that can't be beaten.
Table Mountain, South Africa
Table Mountain overlooks Cape Town as well as the South Atlantic Ocean (next stop, Antarctica).
The popular tourist attraction provides the best views from its peak, Maclear's Beacon.
Green Mile, Scotland
The Scottish Highlands are some of the prettiest green hills you'll see, especially when taking in the view of the Green Mile on the Isle of Skye.
Bryce Canyon, Utah
Nothing prepares you for seeing the hoodoos of Bryce Canyon for the first time — what a bewitching landscape!
After all, hoodoo means "to bewitch" and is the name for the spiring rocks that stand like chimneys from the canyon floor.
Machu Picchu, Peru
It's getting harder and harder to capture this once-in-a-lifetime shot.
With millions descending upon the sacred site, permits have been limited to 2,500 people on the mountain per day.
Castle Mountain, Canada
Banff National Park is stunning, especially when viewed at more than 9,000 feet.
Castle Mountain is part of the Canadian Rockies' Sawback Range.
Alila Jabal Akhdar, Oman
Another hotel that is on top of the world is this Hyatt property, which sits more than 6,500 feet above sea level in the Al Hajar Mountains.
This mountain hike will take you 4,062 feet above the nearby city of the same name, which rests above the Arctic Circle.
The Needles, California
The towering trees may get the attention within Sequoia National Forest, but the Needles Lookout Trail will take you above them and give a view into the mountain valley.
Mauna Kea, Hawaii
Technically the tallest mountain in the world (as its base begins on the seafloor), Mauna Kea stands 33,464-feet tall on the island of Hawaii (aka the Big Island).
Above sea level, the dormant volcano is 13,802 feet to the top.