15 Destinations With Sublime and Ridiculous Claims to Fame

From having the world’s largest salt flats to the most active volcanoes, here are 15 destinations with unique claims to fame.

The world is nothing if not diverse. While we’re all joined by a common humanity, no two places are alike. Whether it’s America, Iceland, India, or Brazil, every country has its own history, culture, traditions, and identity.

It’s what makes travel so exciting! Everywhere you go, there’s something new to see and experience.

However, some places have specific claims to fame that set them apart. From their geological marvels to their location or the amazing people who live there, these special destinations stand out from the crowd. Read on to discover 15 such places and what makes them famous.

1. Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia

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Located in the southwest of Bolivia, Salar de Uyuni is the world’s largest salt flat. This surreal environment sits 11,975 feet above sea level and extends as far as the eye can see. It covers approximately 3,800 square miles and contains around 10 billion tons of salt.

2. Great Barrier Reef, Australia

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The Great Barrier Reef is the largest coral reef system on Earth. It’s also one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. Located off the coast of Queensland, in the northeast of Australia, it covers over 133,000 square miles, comprises 2,900 individual reefs, and provides a home to over 1,500 species of fish.

3. Tokyo, Japan

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A few hundred years ago, Japan’s capital was a small fishing village (named Edo). It’s since turned into the most populated metropolitan area on the planet. An incredible 37 million people live there, which is roughly 30% of Japan’s entire population. The second most populous city is Delhi, in India, with 33.8 million people.  

4. Tuvalu

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This tiny island nation in the South Pacific has the dubious honor of being the least visited country on Earth. In 2023, Tuvalu welcomed 3,136 visitors. However, thanks to the lifting of travel restrictions, that was a ten-fold increase from the number of tourist arrivals in 2022.

5. Tristan da Cunha

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This overseas territory of the United Kingdom is considered the most remote inhabited archipelagos in the world. A group of six small islands in the South Atlantic Ocean, it’s located in the middle of nowhere – around halfway between South America and South Africa. Amusingly, one of the islands is called “Inaccessible.”

6. Ilha da Queimada Grande, Brazil

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Otherwise known as Snake Island, this Brazilian island is often called the deadliest place on Earth. Why? Because nowhere else has such a high concentration of venomous snakes. It’s home to thousands of lancehead vipers – one of the deadliest in the world. Their venom can kill a human in under an hour and is potent enough to melt skin.

7. Death Valley, USA

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Located in California, Death Valley is notorious for having one of the most extreme climates in the world. Temperatures here reach up to 134 °F or 56.7°C. High winds and dust storms are also common in Death Valley, adding to its inhospitable nature. Despite its extreme weather, the Badwater 135-mile Ultramarathon takes place here every year.

8. Papua New Guinea

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Papa New Guinea takes first prize for being the most linguistically diverse country on Earth. Despite having just 8.8 million inhabitants, a staggering 840 languages are spoken here. That’s more than you’ll encounter in the entire continent of Europe and 129 more than Indonesia – the world’s second most linguistically diverse country.

9. Indonesia

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The Indonesian Archipelago does rank first for something, though. It’s officially the most volcanically active country on the planet. Apparently, over 197 million Indonesians live within 62 miles of a volcano, and close to nine million are within 6.2 miles. According to Statista, 55 volcanoes have been active there since 1960 – more than any other country.

10. Kiribati

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Pronounced “Ki-ri-bahss,” Kiribati is one of the planet’s most at-risk destinations due to rising sea levels caused by global warming. This small island nation in the Pacific comprises 33 coral atolls that provide a home to 120,000 people. Its highest point above sea level is two meters, and some areas have already been flooded.

11. Amazon Rainforest

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Spanning roughly 2.6 million square miles, the Amazon Rainforest is twice the size of India and 28 times bigger than the United Kingdom. It’s officially the most ecologically diverse place in the world. An estimated 10% of the planet’s known species live here, and new ones are discovered almost daily. 

12. Finland

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Finland is famous for two things. First, it’s ranked every year as one of the happiest countries on Earth in the World Happiness Report. Second, research suggests it’s the world’s most literate country (both in terms of reading ability and other factors, such as the number of libraries and years of schooling).

13. Monaco

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Tokyo might be the planet’s most populous metropolitan area, but the Principality of Monaco is the world’s most densely populated country. Surrounded by France, this so-called “Microstate” covers an area of just 0.76 square miles and has over 38,000 inhabitants. It’s officially the second smallest country in the world and the smallest of the United Nations.

14. Llanfair­pwllgwyngyll­gogery­chwyrn­drobwll­llan­tysilio­gogo­goch, Wales

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This Welsh village is famous for having the longest place name in the United Kingdom. It’s located on the Isle of Anglesey on the Menai Strait. Apparently, the translation from Welsh means “St. Mary’s Church in the hollow of white hazel near a rapid whirlpool and the Church of St. Tysilio near the red cave.”

15. Australia

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Australia’s Great Barrier Reef isn’t its only claim to fame. It’s also home to the world’s oldest continuous living culture. Evidence suggests that the Aboriginal people have lived there for at least 65,000 years. This diverse group comprises hundreds of separate nations and clans, which were among the first to migrate from Africa.


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Author: Danny Newman

Title: Writer and Content Creator

Expertise: Travel, Digital Nomadry, Outdoors, Blogging

Danny Newman is a writer, content creator, and digital nomad from the UK. He founded the travel and lifestyle blog What’s Danny Doing, a popular resource for people seeking more adventure, self-discovery, and purpose. A nationally syndicated writer, Danny’s work features in dozens of online publications, including MSN.com and news sites across the US.