15 Of The Most Colorful Places On Earth (10 That Are Totally Drab)

All we can ask for is a world that's just a bit more colorful, right? Luckily, we live on a planet that features color in abundance. Nature is home to nearly every shade on the color spectrum and many places worldwide display these in full array at various times of the year. From flora and fauna to natural rock structures and magnetic anomalies, Mother Nature has no shortage of vibrancy. Many travel from around the world just to witness these brilliant displays of color and we don't blame them.

On this list, you'll find photos and descriptions of places that look like they're straight out of the first Technicolor film. It's amazing that these locations actually exist at all! Additionally, there are plenty of places around the world that are... Well, not as colorful. Cities, in particular, are fairly monochromatic in nature and offer cement paradises full of high-rises and glass fortresses. These places are often colorless but offer a certain fascination in their neutral and stark appearances. This list offers the best of both worlds for comparison and contrast, whether you're a fan of concrete jungles or wild, untamed nature.

Continue scrolling to keep reading

Click the button below to start this article in quick view

Start Now

25 Colorful: Lavender Fields Of Provence, France


Lavender is a powerful herb that lends its healing properties to us in the form of scent and flavor. It's used to treat a variety of ailments and also as a calming aid, so you can imagine how breathtaking it would be to stand in fields full of it. In Provence, France, you might just have that opportunity. Every year, the lavender fields explode with a vibrant, light purple color that just seems to exude happiness and serenity. They go on for miles with no end in sight, making it seem as though you're swimming in an ocean of tiny purple buds.

24 Monochrome: Ottawa, Canada


Canada is known for many things but Ottawa, not so much. This Canadian city doesn't really hold much to be desired as far as color or activities go and is, in all honesty, quite gray much of the time. While there are various small parks separating office buildings, they don't do much in the way to light this city up. When compared to neighboring cities Montreal and Toronto, Ottawa simply can't hold a candle to their colorful nature. The city's many neutral-colored building with their white-washed green roofs doesn't make for much of a display.

23 Colorful: Tulip Fields Of Holland


This is one thing that Holland is known for, as the aerial view of its tulip fields is a sight to behold. Bursting in bright reds, yellows, purples, greens, and oranges, these fields create anything but an ordinary garden. Enormous square patches explode into color annually, offering a view from above that holds more color than anything you'll have ever seen. It looks like patchwork from above but down below, you'll find yourself immersed in miles of some of the most beautiful flowers you've ever seen.

22 Colorful: Mendenhall Ice Fields Of Alaska


Cool colors can be just as stunning an array as anything else and Alaska is proof of that. When sunlight hits the ice in just the right way, it casts the most brilliant light blue color that can be seen for miles. In Juneau, the Mendenhall Glacier is home to one of the greatest ice displays in North America. Underneath thick slabs of ice are perfect aquamarine reflections, and these are reachable only by hiking or kayaking to the glacier itself.

21 Monochrome: Atlanta, Georgia


Georgia holds many surprises for visitors who have never been there, especially near Savannah, where Spanish moss grows en mass. However, Atlanta lacks much of this charm, being everything you'd think a city would be. While it does have buildings that vary slightly in color and height, preventing it from being the most boring city to look at, it's not a very interesting past that. There are no colorful festivals or even plant life that add to this busy city and thus it remains simply a hub.

20 Colorful: Lake Natron In Tanzania


Tanzania is a beautiful country, to begin with, but Lake Natron offers a mindblowing array of pink shades that even Barbie would be envious of. This lake is consists of a saline mixture, meaning it's inhospitable to most life aside from the plant life that erupts there every year. These plants, in various hues of pink, are adapted to deal with the harsh conditions near the lake, resulting in a unique environment, untouched by most life. Even the water itself is pink due to the chemical composition of its shores, resulting in a fantasy novel-like setting.

19 Colorful: Bluebonnet Fields in Texas


Some people are in awe by sunflowers that take over miles of fields during summer, while others are captivated by a color that's slightly on the cooler scale. Bluebonnets are well-known in the south and have become somewhat of a symbol for states like Texas. In the Spring, they spread like wildfire and pop up all over the state, resulting in a brilliant display of electric blue. The flowers themselves are beautiful and can span for miles, seeming to pose perfectly for a once-a-year photo op.

18 Monochrome: Houston, Texas


When many people think of Texas, they do think of this city and what it could have to offer. The fact is that there are so many other places in Texas that offer areas of interest as well as color. Houston is a typical city, great for a quick bite and some entertainment but past that, it's a business hub. You won't find anything worthy of visiting here other than elevated highways and lackluster buildings, along with a few traffic jams and an awful rush hour.

17 Colorful: Panjin Red Beach In China


Panjin Beach is an interesting place not only because of its location but also due to its environment. Known as the largest wetland in the world, this beach is covered in reed marsh and is home to a fiery display of seaweed that thrives in its soil. The alkaline composition of this beach lends itself to a bright red plant that takes over its shores every year, surrounding its glassy waters with vibrant red flora. It can be seen at its peak during the Autumn months.

16 Monochrome: Casablanca, Morocco


What's so disappointing about Casablanca is the reputation it once had from the movie that shared its name. Morocco, in itself, is a beautifully vibrant and diverse country -- which is why it's surprising to know that Casablanca doesn't have much to offer. Its streets aren't tremendously interesting and the entertainment value is fairly low, leading to a low-energy atmosphere as well as a relatively boring visual. While the movie made this town look bustling and full of life, in reality, it's just another simple town.

15 Colorful: Cano Cristales River In Columbia


Much of the earth's vibrant color displays are due in part to a healthy ecosystem and the plant life that flourishes within it. This is the case with the Cano Cristales River, which is home to a specific species of underwater plant life that blooms in spectacular color each year. This river also goes by the name of the "river of five colors" and makes way for an Autumnal display of bright reds every season. The plant in question is rare and is a sight to behold if you're ever in Columbia.

14 Monochrome: Canberra, Australia


While this city has earned its name due to its capital nature, it's not much fun past that. There's nothing overwhelming as far as entertainment goes for this city and it's certainly not colorful, save room for the few museums that tourists can find surrounding it. Additionally, it stands in the shadow of cities such as Sydney and Melbourne, both tooting their own horns as far as nightlife, festivals, and atmosphere goes. Australia is a colorful country, to begin with, but Canberra isn't an example of that.

13 Colorful: Rainbow Mountains In China


These otherworldly mountains can be found in Zhangye Danxia National Park which spans roughly 200 miles. The area has been protected since 2009 and for good reason; every mineral in this park plays a part in turning its mountains a multitude of colors. It's easy to determine which minerals and sandstones are responsible for which colors based on their zebra-like appearance. Various weather phenomena affect these colors as well, and after recent rain or extremely sunny and warm day, they'll be at their most vibrant.

12 Monochrome: Nagoya, Japan


If color and life are what you're seeking, then Nagoya might not be the city that you're seeking. With locations like Tokyo and Kyoto providing brilliant city and nature displays, Nagoya sadly lacks what the surrounding areas offer. It was named the "most boring city" in 2016 and still holds true to that title. As an industrial city, it doesn't offer much in the way of vibrancy and offers even less in the way of stunning visuals. Japan offers so much, but just not quite in this city.

11 Colorful: Lake Hillier In Australia


Australia is home to some strange creatures, but their microscopic aquatic life can be just as fascinating. Lake Hillier is well-known on social media by its bright, pastel pink appearance and while it looks pretty Kawaii, it's pink for a simple reason: Saline solution, algae, and bacteria. The combination of these three things causes the water to reflect this stunning color, easily spotted from the air, making it a popular destination for aerial overlooks. Visitors can also see the lake from the ground via a special cruise, making it a popular tourist destination.

10 Monochrome: Frankfurt, Germany


Surprisingly, this German city made the list due to how little time tourists actually spend here. While its residential buildings are rather colorful and architecturally pleasing to the eye, it lacks in attraction and vibrancy in other areas. During the second world war, much of its brilliant buildings and architecture were destroyed and never rebuilt in the same glory, making this city a bit locked in the past. There isn't much to explore here and many people find themselves just passing through on their way to bigger and bolder cities with more to offer.

9 Colorful: Daigo-Ji Temple In Kyoto, Japan


You might be reading this and wondering why -- if this is all about colorful places -- a temple has been listed. What's so fascinating about the Daigo-Ji temple is the flora that surrounds it; while it's a beautiful and sacred structure in itself, it's surrounded by trees that turn the brightest reds and oranges once the season changes. Known as Japan's national treasure, the red design of this temple helps it to perfectly reflect the forest that surrounds it. The colors blend and stand out in a bold statement to autumn before winter moves in.

8 Colorful: Cherry Blossom In Washington, D.C.


Many people flock to the D.C. area come springtime just to witness these pretty pink buds in action. The Tidal Basin is home to roughly 3,750 cherry blossom trees, each coming into full bloom by March. The display is so stunning that the city has even devoted a festival to this pastel array of color, appropriately titled the "National Cherry Blossom Festival". Nowhere in the country can you see such flora in one place, making it a popular destination spot on the east coast.

7 Monochrome: Brussels, Belgium


Similar to Canberra, Brussels has a capital reputation with not much to offer other than that. Not only does this old-world city lack in color, but it also lacks in attractions and ways to have fun and enjoy what could be a history-filled experience. The entire city seems to doze off once the sun goes down, leaving tourists to wonder in a ghostly city that's somewhat devoid of human life for those who love to come out after dark. While the food is something to try, waffles aren't exactly the most colorful thing, either.

6 Colorful: Tunnel Of Love In Ukraine


While some locations on this list have paved paradise to build a parking lot, this is one instance where modern industrialism has given way to nature. Trees took root once again over this railroad track that has fallen into disuse in Ukraine, allowing plant life to flourish. While the tracks are still visible beneath the bright green of the forest floor, the trees are really what makes this scene so stunning. They've grown in such a way that a perfect tunnel has formed, transforming this way of transportation into a spectacular display of nature's artwork.

5 Monochrome: Oslo, Norway


Home to the famous Northern Lights display, Oslo lacks what its surrounding area provides. Not only will you be paying an arm and a leg just to eat or drink in this city, but it's not exactly filled with exciting --  or visually pleasing -- attractions. It's also devoid of human life past a certain hour, leading to an excruciatingly boring trip through what could have been a bustling city. The streets aren't exactly the safest, leading to not only a boring city but one that requires you to keep your eyes peeled as well.

4 Colorful: Kawachi Fuji Garden In Japan


We've seen blues, pinks, reds, and even greens -- But what about purple? The Kawachi Fuji Garden in Kitakyushu is private but open to the public in the spring and autumn months. What makes this garden so alluring is its brilliant display of wisteria, which covers some garden houses from end to end. Here, you'll find 20 different types of the violet plant in all different shades. It has been left untamed to grow on its own, causing tunnel-like growths which make you feel as though you truly are strolling through a magical garden.

3 Colorful: Quaking Aspens In Colorado


Colorado is known for its gorgeous winter scenery and striking mountain peaks, but it also holds a secret: Aspens. Due to much of Colorado being high in elevation, plant life grows differently and is fairly diver1se. Its neon yellow aspens can be seen anywhere between 6,500 feet to 11,500 feet in elevation. These tall, wintery-looking trees bloom in bright yellow every year and can span for miles, making up over 5 million acres throughout the state in total. They sway gently when the wind blows, creating a serene and peaceful high-altitude atmosphere.

2 Monochrome: Singapore


Known well for its shopping and attractions, Singapore is surprisingly lacking in color. Its red-roofed buildings are eye-catching from an aerial point of view but once on the ground, there's not much to keep you from getting bored quickly. Additionally, the city has incredibly strict rules to accompany its very pricey nature, leading to a somewhat tense atmosphere for tourists. Anyone who isn't familiar with these rules will find their visit a bit restrictive as well as unadventurous in its shopping-related reputation.

1 Colorful: Northern Lights In Norway


Perhaps one of the most striking places in Europe is Norway, home to humbling mountains, untamed wildlife, and stunning winter displays. In addition to this Northern country being so beautiful, it's also home to a well-known magnetic phenomenon known as the Northern Lights. This intense aerial display can only be seen at certain times of the year when the atmospheric conditions are just right, giving way to waves of neon color that seemingly just float through the sky. The peak time to seek out this lights display is during the months of September and March when it's most active.

References: travelzoo.com, huffpost.com, insidermonkey.com, smartertravel.com, daily.social

More in Travel