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5 alternatives to Petra

Cappadocia, Turkey

Guys, seriously, if you're into that ancient history sort of vibe, you have to get to Cappadocia, pronto. Picture this: a landscape more like Mars than Earth, strewn with fairy chimney rock formations that you can actually live in. Like, people have carved those into homes and churches since like, the Bronze Age. And duh, while you're there, get in a hot air balloon – it's literally iconic. Trust me, the sunrise view from up there is going to blow your Instagram up, no cap.

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Meteora, Greece

Alright, if you haven't heard of, Meteora, better buckle up. It's in Greece and it has this group of crazy ancient monasteries literally perched on ginormous rocks. Is it even physics? The mind boggles. Look, you don't have to be religious to appreciate an incredible feat of human determination and hardcore architecture. Also, that view, people! It's like, can you even imagine being a monk up there? But, friendly warning, lots of stairs, so bring your most comfortable shoes.

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Goreme, Turkey

Don't even get me started on Goreme. It's also in Turkey (obsessed much?) but listen, it's like a real-life time machine. Tons of beautiful rock formations (do we sense a theme?) and underground cities - yes, actual cities beneath the earth! No biggie, just a whole town living their best mole life. C'mon, it's a whole ton of fun exploring tunnels and feeling like Indiana Jones or whatever.

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Ellora Caves, India

Well, wouldn't be doing my job if I didn’t throw in some love for Ellora Caves. Nestled in the Indian state of Maharashtra, these UNESCO World Heritage Site is like 34 monasteries and temples, scooped out of a mountain. Just imagine that for a sec. Yeah, humans did that. Experience chills for free. Don't forget to explore the largest single monolithic rock excavation in the world, the Kailasa temple. Just don’t skip the part about the proper dress code. Respect, y’all.

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Sigiriya, Sri Lanka

Have you heard about this insane rock fortress called Sigiriya in Sri Lanka? If you haven't, let me enlighten you. It's like this massive column of rock nearly 200m high with ruins of a palace on the top! It's just chilling there in the middle of the jungle like, 'yeah, I’m a rock that was once a palace. What of it?' The climb can be a bit of a workout, but it's worth every huff and puff, promise.

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