Beautiful Blue Destinations Around The World

Post Thumbnail

The third Monday in January is coined ‘Blue Monday’ and is said to be the most depressing day in the calendar due to the combination of gloomy weather and the Christmas comedown. It’s most likely going to hit a little harder this year too, so if you’re in need of some escapism, then submerge yourself in our roundup of heavenly, blue-hued destinations — ranging from crystalline topaz to midnight indigo.

Chefchaouen and Jardin Majorelle, Morocco


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by MOROCCO PLACES (@moroccoplaces)

It’s not clear why the walls of the small village of Chefchaouen in the Rif mountains were originally painted blue, but theories include that the cooling pastel shade deters mosquitoes, and that the colour was painted by Jewish refugees who wanted to replicate the sky, which in Judaism is a symbol of God. Whatever the reason, the results are far from gloomy: the aqueous nooks and crannies — which are repainted annually — provide endless photo opportunities. One of the best things about Chefchaouen is that it’s located about a three-and-a-half hour drive from the nearest main city, Tangiers, so you won’t have to elbow other tourists out the way.

For a splash of sapphire without the long journey, the Majorelle Garden in Marrakech features a Moorish art deco villa, which is painted a saturated cobalt blue — now officially known as Majorelle blue. The garden and villa were built by French artist Jacques Majorelle, and were later bought by Yves Saint Laurent. The fashion designer’s ashes were actually scattered in the rose garden, and the street in front of the site was renamed Rue Yves Saint Laurent.

Banff National Park, Canada

The Rocky Mountains provide one of the most staggering backdrops in the world and make for some epic road trips, but it’s not just the mountains that will blow you away. Tranquil and impossibly turquoise lakes lie waiting to be discovered around unexpected corners. One of the most spectacular is Lake Louise, which is framed by the astonishing Victoria Glacier. The surrounding hamlet of Lake Louise is Canada’s highest settlement and is a hub for winter sports.

Around a half-an-hour drive from Lake Louise, another ethereal body of water can be found. The vista of Moraine Lake with the Valley of the Ten Peaks behind it used to be printed on Canadian twenty-dollar notes, and was thus nicknamed the ‘twenty-dollar view’.

Marble Caves, Chile


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Nature (@nature)

Just like the Rocky Mountains hide glassy lakes, the waters of Patagonia conceal unfathomable natural wonders. General Carrera Lake spans 1850 square kilometres and straddles both Argentina and Chile. It is fed by glacial water that runs from the nearby Andes, and while this scenery is a sight to behold in itself, visitors must take to the water to discover its masterpiece.

The aptly-named Marble Cathedral, Chapel and Cave are the result of 6,000 years of erosion, and are only accessible by boat when the water levels are low. The stone is decorated with swirling patterns and the shimmering aquamarine colour of the dome-like caverns is actually a reflection of the glacial water beneath.

Jodhpur, India


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Zostel (@zostel)

Jodhpur is nicknamed the ‘Blue City’ because of the painted buildings that brighten up its old town. The cerulean hue in this part of Rajasthan’s second-largest city is thought to have been instigated by Brahmins – Hindu priests – who jazzed up their dwellings in order to let others know that a holy person lived there. The trend then caught on with non-Brahmins and resulted in a glorious swash of colour. The scene is best viewed from the majestic 15th-century Mehrangarh Fort that presides over the city.

The Blue Eye, Albania


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Oksana (@_ksu_erm_)

This deep, natural spring in the south of Albania was named ‘The Blue Eye’ because the water that bubbles from it appears darker than that around it, reminiscent of a pupil at the centre of an iris. There’s a platform from which daring visitors jump into the depths, even though it is technically prohibited. If you’re planning to do the same, be warned: the water is incredibly cold and the strong pressure pushes you immediately to the surface. It’s unclear just how deep the spring actually is — no one has managed to dive to the bottom — but we do know that it flows into the Bistricë river and eventually reaches the Ionian Sea.

Júzcar, Spain

We’ve already learnt that blue is a popular colour to paint your home, especially if you live in a hot country, so it’s no surprise that the residents of Júzcar in the mountains of Andalusia decided to keep their walls a very specific shade… Smurf blue. Yes, you read that correctly. Sony painted this unassuming Spanish town a bold shade of bubblegum in 2011 to promote its upcoming film, The Smurfs, and when the contract was up, the villagers decided that they wanted their homes to remain this eye-catching hue. In some corners of Júzcar, visitors may even come across Smurf murals, statues and giant mushrooms.

Blue Lagoon, Iceland


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Blue Lagoon Iceland (@bluelagoonis)

Iceland’s famous Blue Lagoon is an inviting 39 degrees celsius and the water is rich with beneficial minerals, particularly sulphur and silica, which contribute to its unusual milky hue. Its mud is also said to have healing and rejuvenating properties, and you can indulge in a massage or treatment in the luxury spa located on-site. Despite what you may assume, the lagoon was actually manmade — it’s a by-product of a nearby geothermal power plant where Iceland’s natural hot water and steam is used to heat homes all over the country.

Still in the mood for blues?

If Frida Kahlo thinks it’s cool, then it’s cool… | Why Porto is the place for a weekend on the tiles | Discover why a cave in New Zealand glows in the dark