Earth, Wind and Fire: Cool Places Created by the Elements - Atlas Obscura
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Earth, Wind and Fire: Cool Places Created by the Elements

Sure, we all want to curse Mother Nature when it’s rainy or windy. But that annoying weather actually helps create cool rock formations and other geological marvels. Here are a few sites around the world created by the elements. 

Earth
The Devil’s Town Rock Formation
Kursumlija – yeah, we can’t pronounce it, either – Serbia is home to a rock formation created by Satan himself. OK, not really, but the legend goes that “The Devil’s Town” rock formation is actually the dead bodies of a wedding party petrified by the devil. In reality, national erosion has whittled these 202 rocks into bumpy pillars. They stand 15-meters-tall and are capped by stone blocks.
 

Wind
Cappadocia, Turkey
A city carved into volcanic rock formations–the stuff of fiction? The stuff of the Turkish town Avcilar. Cappadocia got its beginnings when a volcano erupted a few million years ago. Over time, wind helped carve the remaining soft rock left by the ash into spires and other forms. The rock stayed soft and allowed locals to build houses and other structures into them, resulting in towns both above and below ground. How’s that for resourceful?  


Water
Loch and Gorge
Along the Great Ocean Road outside Melbourne, Australia, you can see erosion at its finest. Part of the cliff of Loch Ard Gorge in Port Campbell fell into the ocean in 2009, and you can stand on a secluded beach and peer up at the monstrous arches. A pair of twin pillars are named Tom and Eva, after the sole survivors of an 1878 shipwreck.

 

Fire
Mount Thielsen
You’ve always heard taller things attract lightning, right? Take that idea to the nth degree and you get the imprints left behind on Mount Thielsen in Oregon. Technically an extinct shield volcano, the mountain contains exogenic fulgurites, glassy objects formed when lighting repeatedly strikes, yet fails to penetrate, the mountain. What’s interesting about these formations is that they can take the shape of the lightning itself.