Although there is only one that has been named as such, our planet is home to many grand canyons. From steep cliffs to narrow valleys, each evoke a sense of wonder and amazement while documenting thousands of years of geological history.
The Vintgar gorge is one of the most popular natural features in Slovenia. From Bled the route leads north towards the village of Podhom. All along the road there are clear signs for Vintgar, and then by local roads the route leads to the entrance to the gorge itself (3.5 km from Bled).Along the narrow passage, where the Radovna river thrashes loudly against its rocky confines, there are paths, galleries and bridges constructed in the rock. The trail runs through the 1600 m long gorge. The Radovna flows over cascades and rapids, and in clear pools it finds peace for a few moments. The Vintgar gorge ends at the delightful Šum waterfall, the highest river fall in Slovenia. At the waterfall the trail leaves the Radovna and rises up a track heading south-east to the chapel of St Catherine above Zasip. From here there is one of the finest views over the entire area of Bled. The way back goes down to Zasip and then along the road to Bled.
The Grand Canyon of Verdon
Verdon Gorge in France is said to be the most beautiful canyon in Europe. The turquoise color of the Verdon river distinguishes the area and the canyon itself, while attracting numerous travelers for hiking and rock climbing, especially during the summer.The Verdon Gorge is 25 kilometers long and its depth varies from 250 to 700 meters (about 2 297 feet. maximum). Its most popular segment is that situated between the towns of Castellane and Moustiers-Sainte-Marie, where the river has cut a spectacular ravine through the limestone mass, 700 meters below. Its proximity to the French Riviera makes it highly accessible. The friendly and visually impressive landscapes attracts hikers, rock climbers and kayak enthusiasts from all over the world.
The Oneonta Gorge is a slot canyon just barely 6 mile long. Designated by the U.S. Forest Service as a botanical area, the steep basalt walls of the canyon are home to numerous rare plants. The cool canyon is narrow, with 100 foot walls of rock on either side.
Glen Canyon is a true paradise for nature lovers from all walks of life; there really is something for everyone. Whether you’re a geologist, a biologist, an anthropologist or just a regular visitor, it’s pretty much guaranteed you’ll enjoy the splendor Glen Canyon has to offer. But at this majestic site, it really pays to study rock formations, as they are the region’s true storytellers, recording the environmental changes caused by climate, weather, fires and geological processes throughout the millennia.
Canyon Uvac, Serbia
Situated in one of Serbia’s most picturesque settings–the Uvac River valley–the Uvac Special Nature Reserve is home to 104 species of birds of which the Eurasian Griffon–one of two remaining types of vultures–now reside. Another of the reserve’s unique features is the Uvac Canyon and its majestically meandering river valley. Here, you will find numerous caves varying in size from cavelets to the largest cave system yet to be discovered in Serbia–the 6,185 meter (3.8 mile) long Ushac cave system. This system boast a wealth of natural cave ornaments, from stalactites, stalagmites, and columns.
El Tajo Gorge, Spain
Known as El Tajo, the gorge was created by constant erosion of the rio Guadalevín which is fed by mountain streams and melting snow high in the mountains of the Sierra de las Nieves.The rio Guadalevín exits El Tajo into the valley below where it was used by a number of flour mills to drive their grinders but all activity ceased in 1917 after a rock slide destroyed the mills.
The Narrows is an ecologically fragile, beautiful Texas property. Several endangered species make their home in these unique cliffs and the surrounding ranch lands. The Narrows provides habitat for the endangered bird species, the Golden-cheeked warbler and Black-capped vireo. The globally rare plant, the Canyon mock-orange, can be found on the Narrows, as well as the rare wild Smoke tree, maidenbush, and chatterbox orchid.
Zion Canyon is a magnificent crevice forged by rock/landslides as powerful floods of the North Fork of the Virgin River forcefully tear through the canyon leaving single massive rocks, monoliths, protruding from the canyon floor.
Leutasch Gorge, Austria
The Leutaschklamm is the narrow gorge through which the Leutascher Ache river rushes before passing the German border and joining the Isar river in the Mittenwald valley.