|by Sean O'Neill||Nature Appreciation||17|
Each year, the United Nations unveils a list of the world's most stunning natural attractions, called World Heritage sites, and chances are, you've never heard of them—Papahanaumokuakea, anyone? The designation shines the spotlight on a handful of hidden gems, while also protecting them from man. See eight that made the cut for 2010, including China Danxia, pictured.
Over the past 28 years, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has identified more than 180 of these natural wonders across 77 countries. These "World Heritage Sites" are deemed "unique, irreplaceable, and authentic." The esteemed club includes the likes of the Grand Canyon, Mount Everest, and Victoria Falls among other iconic sites. (Manmade landmarks, such as Rome's Colosseum, are counted separately.)
This summer, the UN agency added some particularly picturesque (and hard to pronounce) landscapes to its list. Check out our slide show of the Eight "New" Natural Wonders—complete with our very own pronunciation guide.
Are there any that didn't make the list that should be on there? Tell us about them!