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10 Best Street Foods From Around the World
Sure, you can get a cheeseburger almost anywhere, but when you're traveling, why not sample the food the locals specialize in – and love? Street food gives you a tasty window into another culture. Here are our recommendations for your next trip. Read more »

Author's Note: 10 Places on Earth That Look Completely Alien

When I was young, I enthusiastically devoured a series of juvenile science fiction novels about a team of future space cadets led by the intrepid Tom Corbett. The depictions of other planets in the books bore little resemblance to reality — Venus, for example, was a hot and humid but otherwise Earth-like environment. But those books started me pondering about what other places in the cosmos must look like, and I've been thinking about that ever since. That curiosity made this assignment even more interesting for me, because I could at last see places on Earth that were comparable to the worlds conjured by my imagination.


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  • Bordenstein, Sarah. "Rio Tinto, Spain." Carleton.edu. Jun. 21, 2013. (March 17, 2014). http://serc.carleton.edu/microbelife/topics/riotinto/index.html
  • California Department of Parks and Recreation. "Red Rock Canyon SP." Parks.ca.gov. 2013. (March 20, 2014) http://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=631
  • Choi, Charles Q. "Why Jupiter's Great Red Spot Has Lasted So Long." Space.com. Nov. 25, 2013. (March 17, 2014) http://www.space.com/23708-jupiter-great-red-spot-longevity.html
  • Etosha National Park. "The Etosha Pan." Etoshanationalpark.org. (March 17, 2014) http://www.etoshanationalpark.org/etosha-pan
  • McMurdo Dry Valleys. (March 15, 2014) http://www.mcmurdodryvalleys.aq/home
  • Mother Nature Network. "Kilauea Volcano, Hawaii." MNN.com. (March 17, 2014)http://www.mnn.com/earth-matters/space/photos/10-places-on-earth-that-resemble-alien-planets/kilauea-volcano-hawaii
  • NASA. "Atacama Desert (NASA Ames participation)." Nasa.gov. May 9, 2007. (March 17, 2014) http://www.nasa.gov/centers/ames/research/expeditions/atacama.html
  • NASA Earth Observatory. Untitled page. Nasa.gov. (March 17, 2014) http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=2561
  • National Geographic Traveler. "The Pinnacles (Western Australia)." National Geographic Traveler. (March 17, 2014) http://travel.nationalgeographic.com/travel/traveler-magazine/photo-contest/2012/entries/129472/view/
  • National Park Service. "Craters of the Moon National Monument & Preserve: Geologic Activity." Nps.gov. (March 15, 2014) http://www.nps.gov/crmo/naturescience/geologicactivity.htm
  • New Zealand Department of Conservation. "Waiotapu Thermal track." Govt.nz. (March 16, 2014) http://www.doc.govt.nz/parks-and-recreation/tracks-and-walks/bay-of-plenty/rotorua-lakes/waiotapu-thermal-track/
  • Russo, Joe; Landsman, Larry; and Gross, Edward. "Planet of the Apes Revisited: The Behind-The-Scenes Story Of The Classic Science Fiction Saga." Thomas Dunne Books. 2001. (March 16, 2014) http://books.google.com/books?id=SnSqvH6RRSoC&q=arizona#v=onepage&q=forbidden%20zone&f=false
  • Trivedi, Bijal P. "Scientists Return to Galápagos Sea Vents." National Geographic News. May 29, 2002. (March 17, 2014) http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2002/05/0529_020529_TVgalapagos.html
  • U.S. Geological Survey. "Kilauea—Perhaps the World's Most Active Volcano." Usgs.gov. May 7, 2009. (March 16, 2014) http://hvo.wr.usgs.gov/kilauea/
  • Vesilind, Priit J. "The Driest Place on Earth." Nationalgeographic.com 2003. (March 16, 2014) http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/ngm/0308/feature3/