Providence Canyon State Park

by Lydia Schrandt for USA TODAY 10Best

Most beautiful natural wonders in the South

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10Best has rounded up the best natural attractions in the United States. These are the best in the South.

Photo courtesy of Alabama Tourism Department (ADT) / Chris Granger

Alabama - Dismals Canyon

This sandstone gorge tucked away in North Alabama earned National Natural Landmark status in 1975, and it remains largely under the radar despite its immense beauty.

Arkansas - Buffalo National River

This natural wonder flows for 135 miles through the Ozark Mountains and remains one of the few un-dammed rivers in the continental U.S.

Delaware - Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge

This Delaware wildlife refuge protects one of the mid-Atlantic’s largest tidal salt marshes. It’s also one of the best spots in the nation for birdwatching.

Florida - Three Sisters Springs

If you want to see manatees in the wild, spend some time at Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge in Florida. Three Sisters Springs serves as a winter habitat for these gentle giants.

Georgia - Providence Canyon

Stand above Providence Canyon, one of Georgia’s Seven Natural Wonders, and you’ll quickly see why it’s nicknamed the “Little Grand Canyon.”

Kentucky - Mammoth Cave

Below the earth’s surface in Kentucky lies one of the world’s longest known cave systems. Mammoth Caves comprise more than 400 miles of mapped subterranean passageways.

Louisiana - Atchafalaya Basin

Louisiana’s Atchafalaya Basin covers 14 parishes in the state, providing an enormous natural habitat of swamps, lakes and water prairies rich in wildlife.

Maryland - Chesapeake Bay

The Chesapeake Bay, North America’s largest estuary, offers serene beauty in spades, whether you’re exploring its marshes, sandy beaches, wetlands or open waters.

Mississippi - Greenville Cypress Preserve

This 16-acre cypress preserve offers a quiet place to walk amid meadows, cypress brakes and bottomland hardwood forests.

North Carolina - Chimney Rock

The 315-foot rocky outcrop affords phenomenal views of Hickory Nut Gorge and the Rocky Broad River for visitors who climb the 499 steps to the top.

Oklahoma - Mountain Fork River

Oklahoma’s Mountain Fork River ranks among the best whitewater streams in the state, offering a year-round destination for trout fishing, rafting, canoeing and kayaking.

South Carolina - Angel Oak

This massive, ancient Southern live oak tree near Charleston towers above the ground at nearly 70 feet tall and about 25 feet in circumference.

Tennessee - Fall Creek Falls

Fall Creek Falls, Tennessee's largest and most visited state park, gets its name from the 256-foot cascade – one of the highest in the eastern United States.

Texas - Santa Elena Canyon

The Rio Grande River passes through Santa Elena Canyon, a jewel in Big Bend National Park, wending between walls that tower some 1,500 feet above the water.

Virginia - Luray Caverns

These Shenandoah Valley caves (the largest complex in the Eastern U.S.) include pristine calcite formations and cathedral-like chambers that are 10 stories high.

West Virginia - New River Gorge

The Main Overlook here is 1,400 feet above the New River, offering some of the most breathtaking scenery anywhere in the park (and in the state).

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