From islands swallowed by rising water levels to melting glaciers at a skiing hotspot, we count ten places you should visit before they’re gone forever!
10 – The Maldives,
- If you like an element of danger with your island holiday, try visiting the Maldives: a collection of 1,200 tropical islands that are less than a metre above sea level.
- The Maldives are super popular with honeymooners, but they might not be for long. Environmental studies suggest the Maldives are in danger of disappearing under rising water levels.
- It’s gotten so bad that the President had to announce a contingency plan. He said the federal government is purchasing land in other nations so that citizens will have somewhere to go. I wonder if they all sleep in their scuba gear. Y’know, just in case.
9 – Magdalen Islands,
- The Magdalen Islands are a beautiful getaway destination in Quebec’s Gulf of St. Lawrence. They have pristine beaches and amazing sandstone cliffs, but if you want to check them out you better be quick before they literally erode from memory!
- This stunning archipelago needs to learn how to stand up for itself because it spends most of its time getting mercilessly pelted by heavy winds. A huge ice wall protects against the worst of it, but even it hasn’t been able to prevent the coast from eroding up to forty inches a year.
- Oh, and if that weren’t bad enough, the protective ice is melting. Experts believe it will be completely gone within seventy-five years, which will leave the island vulnerable to some seriously destructive storms.
8 – Venice,
- Venice, Italy’s ‘City of Water’, is one of the most romantic cities in the world. It’s basically a photographer’s wet dream, and every year tourists flock there to sample local wines, paddle across canals and take photos on its many charming bridges.
- Unfortunately water levels in this unique city have been rising for years and experts believe the place will be uninhabitable by the year 2100. And that’s assuming flood waters get it first. Many of its buildings have been structurally compromised because of water immersion.
- However it happens, Venice seems destined to go the way of Atlantis. But before it does visitors are advised to check out the Grand Canal cruise and the breathtaking mosaics of the Basilica di San Marco. Of course, tourism will basically make the situation worse so, yeah, there’s that…
7 – The Alps,
- The Alps are the largest mountain system in Europe and a paradise for skiers and outdoor enthusiasts. Unfortunately, they’re at huge risk, as experts think the glaciers will completely melt by 2050.
- Because they sit at a relatively low altitude, the Alps are especially susceptible to climate change. The region has been warming at three times faster than the global average, causing it to lose three percent of glacial ice every year.
- Aside from ruining thousands of perfectly good ski trips, this could also affect Europe’s freshwater, as forty percent of it originates in the Alps. Scientists better get their (ice) skates on if they hope to fix this problem.
6 – The Dead Sea,
- The salty Dead Sea is a lake that lies between Israel, Palestinian territory and Jordan. For a long time tourists and pilgrims have flocked there believing its waters had special healing abilities.
- Unfortunately mineral mining and a diversion of water flow is drying the lake up. As the natural mineral-rich water has receded, freshwater has taken its place, which are dissolving the salt deposits and causing dangerous sinkholes to form.
- In the last forty years, the lake has shrunk by a third and sunk eighty feet. Experts believe it could disappear in less than fifty years, so if you want to float in the incredible naturally buoyant water you should probably buy your ticket, like, now.