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Whenever I am in a new city or neighborhood, I almost always check out the nearby fountains. I can toss a penny, make a wish, splash through the water and take a few photos. The other wonderful thing about fountains…seeing them is usually FREE!
Here are (in my opinion) some of the world’s most incredible fountains. If you happen to be traveling this summer, keep an eye out for them:
Swarovski Fountain, Innsbruck
Some people might find this wide-eyed guy a little creepy, but I think he is pretty cool. Covered with moss and two shiny giant crystal eyes, he is has a nozzle stuck in his mouth to create the remarkable fountain which also serves as the entrance for the Swarovski Innbruck Museum (Crystal Worlds). A striking display of art with an environmentally friendly theme.
Banpo Bridge Moonlight Rainbow Fountain, Seoul
You already know I love bridges, so how could I resist a bridge fountain? The Banpo two-tiered bridge over the Hangang River is home to the spectacular Moonlight Rainbow Fountain. It is the world’s longest, with 380 water jets and over ten thousand LED multi-colored lights. The water jets line both sides of the 370 foot bridge and are set to music to create an entertaining light show.
Crown Fountain, Chicago
I will always remember my first visit to Millennium Park when I saw Crown Fountain at night. It was a truly unique experience and I was amazed and impressed by the creativity and sense of community here. The faces were so friendly and the fountains coming out of their mouths (after puffing out their cheeks) onto the visitors framed an image that might just stay with me forever.
Stravinsky Fountain, Paris
If you’re a bit quirky like me and attracted to the unusual, then you’ll want to visit the very whimsical Stravinsky Fountain on your next trip to Paris. The amusing fountain features 16 black and brightly colored sculptures that move and spray water. The sculptures were designed by composer Igor Stravinsky and represent characters from his music. So fun!
Bellagio, Las Vegas
When I think of dramatic and one-of-a-kind, the Fountains of Bellagio come immediately to mind. Seeing the fountain show is one of the most beautiful and spectacular things you can experience when you’re in Vegas. Bellagio’s fountains come alive, blending complex choreography with beautiful displays of color, light and motion of the water. The music changes regularly and the latest features the music of Tiësto a DJ and dance music producer. [Watch Video]
Magic Fountain of Montjuïc, Barcelona
When you are visiting Barcelona, take the subway out to the Montjuïc neighborhood to see the Font Magica (Magic Fountain). It is one of the most fabulous things you’ll see during your trip. Be sure to arrive after dark so you can see the dazzling colors light-up fountain. If you have time stay for multiple shows since they all offer different colors, music and water choreography.
People’s Friendship Fountain, Moscow
The impressive People’s Friendship Fountain features 16 gleaming gold sculptures wearing national costumes, that represent the republics of the Soviet Union. The fountain, created in the 1950’s is quite large and very beautiful using 4,000 cubic meters of water and 800 nozzles that send water 24-meters into the air. You’ll find it at the center of the All-Russian Exhibition Center.
Archibald Fountain, Sydney
This understated, yet splendid fountain opened in 1932 as a gift to the city of Sydney from J.F. Archibald to commemorate the alliance between Australia and France in World War I. Located across from the Cathedral in Hyde Park, the landmark’s sculptures pay homage to the French and serves as a central resting spot for tourists and local workers on their lunch break.
Buckingham Memorial Fountain, Chicago
Really, I should have moved on and selected a fountain from another part of the world. But I just couldn’t leave out this wonderful Chicago landmark which has to be one of America’s finest fountains. If you are in Chicago, walk through Millennium Park and then through Grant Park to Buckingham Fountain. You’ll enjoy taking photos and Lake Michigan is right across the street so you can sit, relax and enjoy the view!
Note: For many of these fountains, the best time to visit is in the summer. You know, because it’s warm outside.
Featured image by Sean Murray/Flickr
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