The Ultimate Martian Adventure: 8 Amazing Places to Visit on Mars

by Rida Fatima

Tourists on Mars
(Image Credit: Dall-e)

Mars, our neighboring planet, has long captivated the imagination of scientists, space enthusiasts, and even the general public. With its stark beauty and vast, barren landscapes, it’s a world of contrasts that fascinates and intrigues us. Imagine standing on the edge of a massive volcano or gazing into the depths of a canyon that dwarfs even the Grand Canyon on Earth. Picture yourself exploring the craters and valleys, searching for signs of life or evidence of ancient civilizations. For future tourists, the possibilities are endless, and the adventure is just beginning. While the landing sites for these missions will likely be chosen for safety and practicality, there’s no shortage of interesting geology to explore. Here are just a few of the incredible locations that await the intrepid travelers of the future.

Olympus Mons

Olympus Mons is one of the most fascinating destinations on Mars, and it’s a must-visit for any future Martian tourist. This massive shield volcano towers over the surrounding landscape, rising to a height of 22 kilometers (13.6 miles) above the Martian surface. To put that in perspective, Olympus Mons is nearly three times the height of Mount Everest, the tallest mountain on Earth! The volcano is so massive that its base is over 550 kilometers (340 miles) wide, making it wider than the entire state of Arizona. Standing on the slopes of Olympus Mons, you’ll feel like you’re on top of the world – or at least, on top of a very large mountain! Whether you’re a geology enthusiast or just looking for an awe-inspiring adventure, Olympus Mons is a destination you won’t want to miss.

Tharsis Volcanoes

Tharsis is a volcanic plateau on Mars that’s home to some of the largest and most impressive volcanoes in the solar system. The Tharsis volcanoes are a must-visit destination for any intrepid Martian traveler, offering breathtaking views and fascinating insights into the geology of this amazing planet. The largest volcano on Tharsis is called Arsia Mons, which stands a towering 16 kilometers (10 miles) high. That’s nearly twice the height of Mount Everest! Another fascinating Tharsis volcano is Pavonis Mons, which is surrounded by a mysterious hexagonal pattern that has puzzled scientists for decades. And then there’s Ascraeus Mons, which is home to a gigantic fissure system that stretches for over 1,000 kilometers (620 miles). Whether you’re a geology enthusiast or just looking for an adventure, the Tharsis volcanoes are a destination you won’t want to miss.

Valles Marineris

Valles Marineris is one of the most breathtaking and awe-inspiring destinations on Mars. This massive canyon system is over 4,000 kilometers (2,500 miles) long and up to 7 kilometers (4.3 miles) deep, making it the largest canyon in the solar system. To put that in perspective, Valles Marineris is ten times longer and five times deeper than the Grand Canyon on Earth! But the canyon is not just big – it’s also home to some fascinating geological features. One of the most interesting is the massive cliff known as the “Great Tharsis Ridge,” which is over 7 kilometers (4.3 miles) high and runs for hundreds of kilometers along the eastern edge of the canyon. And if you’re a fan of extreme sports, Valles Marineris offers some truly out-of-this-world experiences – imagine rappelling down the side of a 7-kilometer-deep canyon, or hiking across a Martian landscape that looks like it belongs on another planet entirely! So if you’re looking for adventure, excitement, and some of the most stunning natural scenery in the solar system, Valles Marineris is the destination for you.

The North And South Poles Of Mars

The poles of Mars are some of the most fascinating and unique destinations in the solar system. Unlike the Earth’s poles, which are covered in ice, the poles of Mars are covered in a mixture of ice and frozen carbon dioxide, known as dry ice. This creates a stunning landscape of white and blue, with towering ice cliffs and deep valleys. One of the most fascinating features of the Martian poles is the seasonal changes – in the winter, the poles are shrouded in darkness and extreme cold, while in the summer, they are bathed in sunlight and relatively warm temperatures. The polar regions of Mars are also home to some fascinating geological features, including massive canyons and valleys, as well as the largest volcano in the solar system – Olympus Mons, which is located near the northern pole. And if you’re lucky, you may even catch a glimpse of the stunning auroras that light up the Martian sky.

The Gale Crater and Mount Sharp (Aeolis Mons)

The Gale Crater and Mount Sharp, also known as Aeolis Mons, are two of the most fascinating and scientifically important destinations on Mars. The Gale Crater is a massive impact crater that’s over 150 kilometers (93 miles) in diameter, and it’s home to the Curiosity rover – one of the most advanced robotic explorers ever sent to Mars. Mount Sharp, located at the center of the Gale Crater, is a towering mountain that rises over 5 kilometers (3 miles) above the surrounding landscape. But Mount Sharp is more than just a mountain – it’s a geological time capsule, with layers of sediment that have been laid down over billions of years. By studying these layers, scientists hope to unlock the secrets of Mars’ past, and learn more about the planet’s geology and history. And if you’re looking for adventure, the Gale Crater and Mount Sharp offer plenty of opportunities for exploration and discovery. From hiking across the Martian landscape to studying the rocks and sediments up close, there’s something for everyone on this incredible planet.

The Recurring Slope Lineae in Hale Crater

The Recurring Slope Lineae (RSL) in Hale Crater are some of the most mysterious and intriguing features on Mars. These dark streaks, which appear to flow down the sides of the crater walls during the Martian spring and summer, have puzzled scientists for years. Some believe that they may be evidence of liquid water on Mars, while others think that they may be caused by dry, flowing sand or dust. Whatever their cause, the RSL in Hale Crater offer a tantalizing glimpse into the geological and environmental mysteries of Mars. And if you’re looking for adventure, exploring the RSL in Hale Crater offers a unique and thrilling experience – imagine rappelling down the side of a Martian crater wall, or hiking through the rugged terrain in search of these elusive features.

Ghost Dunes

The ‘Ghost Dunes’ in Noctis Labyrinthus and Hellas basin are some of the most fascinating and enigmatic features on Mars. These dunes, which are believed to be millions of years old, have been preserved as ghostly outlines in the Martian rock. They were likely formed when Mars had a thicker atmosphere and more abundant liquid water, and they offer a glimpse into the planet’s past climate and geology. The dunes are also a reminder of the incredible power of wind on Mars, which is capable of shaping the landscape in ways that are both beautiful and mysterious. And if you’re looking for adventure, exploring the ‘Ghost Dunes’ offers a unique and thrilling experience – imagine hiking through the rugged terrain in search of these ancient formations, or camping under the Martian sky as you marvel at the wonders of the Red Planet.


Exploring the wonders of Mars is an adventure like no other. From towering mountains and vast canyons to mysterious dunes and ghostly outlines of ancient features, the Red Planet is a treasure trove of geological and environmental marvels. Whether you’re a seasoned explorer or a curious traveler, there’s something for everyone on this incredible planet. So pack your bags, grab your spacesuit, and get ready to experience the wonders of Mars. Who knows what discoveries and adventures await us in the future as we continue to explore and unlock the secrets of this fascinating planet!

What Astronomers have to say about the Mystery of Bermuda Triangle?

by Rida Fatima

Bermuda Triangle
(Figure 1: Secrets of the Bermuda Triangle.

For years, many cases of mysterious disappearances in the Bermuda Triangle, a region of the North Atlantic Ocean, have come to light. Since the middle of the 19th century, more than 50 ships and 20 aircraft have disappeared without a trace. However, that does not imply that the search for an explanation has not been entertaining. Maybe there are some extraterrestrial beings involved, something is tugging things under the sea, perhaps there is a connection to the storied lost city of Atlantis. It can also be just bad weather leading to a human error, or a lot of traffic in the area? In reality, there aren’t any more disappearances in this part of the ocean than in any other well-traveled region, yet conspiracy theories still abound. From space, we can investigate a similar phenomenon known as the “Bermuda Triangle of space”. This region above the Earth is known to cause trouble for any spacecraft that happens to pass through it. No one is saying that the ships in question are suddenly dissipating into thin air, but the disturbance nonetheless poses severe issues for both the astronauts’ equipment and safety (Crookes, 2020).


The South Atlantic Anomaly (SAA), sometimes known as the Bermuda Triangle of Space, is located above the South Atlantic and stretches from Chile to Zimbabwe. It’s located where the inner Van Allen radiation belt is most in close proximity to the planet’s surface. The magnetic field of Earth is very weak here. In order to better understand, let’s look at Earth’s two Van Allen belts, which are magnetically locked rings of charged particles that circle our globe. High-energy protons make up the majority of the inner half, while electrons make up the majority of the outer part. The belts end up shielding the planet’s surface from dangerous radiation because they catch the particles that are firing from the sun’s surface.

Van Allen belts
(Figure 2: How the South Atlantic Anomaly (SAA) is created.

However, the solar cosmic ray particles are not being repelled to the same degree at the SAA position as they are elsewhere above the globe. As a result, the distance between the sun’s rays and the Earth’s surface is reduced to 200 kilometers (124 miles), and the region experiences an increase in the flux of energetic particles due to the sun’s stronger radiation. The lower geomagnetic field intensity in that location eventually makes satellites there more susceptible to energetic particles, to the point that spacecraft damage could happen when they pass through the zone (Keating, 2018). Due to the decreasing magnetic field intensity, the inner Van Allen radiation belt, or Earth’s radiation belt, is able to approach the planet’s surface, which causes issues with communications satellites and other equipment.

According to a researcher, satellites travelling through this area will be exposed to greater radiation levels to the point where damage may result. “Imagine a discharge or arc in an electrical system. A satellite may become charged as a result of increased radiation arriving, and the ensuing arcs may cause significant harm.


Due to the decreasing magnetic field intensity, the inner Van Allen radiation belt, or Earth’s radiation belt, is able to approach the planet’s surface, which causes issues with communications satellites and other equip. According to a study, satellites travelling through this area will be exposed to greater radiation levels to the point where damage may result. “Imagine a discharge or arc in an electrical system. A satellite may become charged as a result of increased radiation arriving, and the ensuing arcs may cause significant harm. Shutdowns protect a number of significant operations, such as those employing the Hubble Space Telescope, which travels through the SAA ten times per day and spends about 15% of its time there. Unfortunately, but necessary, Hubble cannot gather astronomical data at these times. System failure is probably what would happen if measures weren’t taken. Undoubtedly, there is a greater chance for issues to arise the more complicated electronics have grown. For instance, the onboard oscillator frequency shifts for satellites using the microwave tracking method DORIS, which stands for Doppler Orbitography and Radiopositioning Integrated by Satellite (Aron, 2014).

Van Allen Probes
(Figure 3: The Van Allen Probes (VAP) were launched in 2012 and operated for seven years to better understand Earth’s radiation belts.

Computer issues on board spacecraft that pass by the SAA have also been observed by astronauts. “Putting equipment into a safe mode” involves restricting operations that are more radiation-sensitive. In fact, the SAA is the reason that the International Space Station (ISS) has robust shielding around the areas that are used the most, such the gallery and the sleeping areas, limiting the radiation the astronauts are exposed to. Additionally, it explains why astronauts are required to wear dosimeters, which monitor an individual’s exposure to ionising radiation in real time and issue alerts when harmful levels are reached.


The weak magnetic field above the South Atlantic is a result of Earth’s irregular shape, which is not entirely round. The Earth’s magnetic dipole field is located approximately 300 miles (500 km) away from the planet’s center due to a modest middle bulge (300 miles). Charged particles and cosmic rays are fairly close to the Earth’s surface. They provide minimal protection from interplanetary space where the dip is located. The magnetic bubble still blocks the surface from the solar wind, though.

The magnetic field is maintained by a dynamo mechanism that rises up from the fluidized metal in the Earth’s outer core, producing electric currents. The tumultuous movement of molten, charged material as the globe rotates on its axis creates the magnetic field that gives the planet its north and south poles at the surface. The Earth’s magnetic field, however, is continually moving and changing strength, thus the poles aren’t fixed. The SAA is currently expanding because the magnetic field is diminishing in that region (ESA, 2020).

NASA is actively investigating. Ionospheric Connection Explorer was orbited by a Northrop Grumman Pegasus XL rocket on October 10, 2019. Its mission-required monitoring of the weak region in the magnetic field revealed that the “dent” in the magnetic field is basically travelling west and dividing in two. NASA reported that this is making satellite missions more difficult. Terry Sabaka is a geophysicist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland, according to Terry,

“The SAA is slow-moving but it is undergoing some change in morphology, so it’s also important that we keep observing it by having continued missions because that’s what helps us make models and predictions.”


Can we establish Human Civilization in Space in the next 50 years?

by JkTheAnonymousWriter

“The human race must colonize space within the next 100 years or it will become extinct”
~ Stephen Hawking

International Space Station
(Credit: Nasa)

Let’s start this from the start. Isaac Newton must have thought about space travel in his thought experiment to evaluate orbital motion. Cannonballs when fired from the mountain top with a high muzzle speed and if the velocity is much higher, then their paths curve downward no more sharply than the Earth’s surface curves away underneath them; therefore, the cannon-balls will surely go into orbit. This experiment is still the neatest and easiest way to teach the concept of orbital flight.

Newton estimated that to throw a cannonball into the Earth’s orbit, its speed must be about 25000 km/h. However, even after knowing that we weren’t able to achieve that speed until 1957 with the launch of Sputnik 1, 12 years later, we stepped on the moon.

And now we are in the Cenozoic Era. Hundreds more have now traveled into space, which means we have done nothing more than circle the Earth in a space station. The ISS (International Space Station) was one of the most expensive artifacts ever constructed. The ISS acts as a microgravity and technical payoff space environment research laboratory. Extensive scientific research is conducted there in fields like astrobiology, astronomy, meteorology, physics, and some other major fields that might lead us to successful space colonies.

We have so far developed many technologies, space inventories, and robots that will easily help us to explore the entire universe. But the main problem is that we depend on chemical fuel, and at the speed we are going, it might take more than billions of times infinity to explore the entire universe. However, in this century, we will successfully explore our solar planets up to the very edge. We have sent the JWST (James Webb space telescope) into space, which will reveal the mysterious unknown things of the universe. The discoveries will lead us to a new space era and will expand our vision of the entire cosmos.

We are moving towards better communication through networking satellites. In total, about 4,852 active satellites are orbiting the Earth as of January 1, 2022. Researchers and astronomers are planning to take the next step toward planet mining and space fabrication. In that way, they plan to lower the cost of space missions by using space materials as fuel and other means for better and cheaper exploration.

In 2024, NASA is launching a moon base camp mission – Artemis. They are planning to build a gateway in lunar orbit so that they can easily export robots, human beings, and other materials for further research. Also, it will help us learn more about the major effects of disrupted Space Space circadian rhythms, isolation, and high doses of radiation—all this information is quite necessary for establishing space territorial civilization and exploration.

It’s quite complex and sophisticated, as we see in sci-fi movies, to colonize space. Initially, it will be robots who will be sent, not humans, into Mars, space, and exoplanets. The robots that can work and utilize information without any signals or input, such as AI robots, can work for long hours with no human contact. Because it will almost certainly take a long time to send a signal from another planet to Earth and then back again. In the coming years, private space organizations like SpaceX, led by Elon Musk, Blue Origin, and Jeff Bezos, will surely bring the silicon valley culture to space tourism. Elon Musk is planning to launch 100 missions in 2023. He has already succeeded in building reusable rockets. Reusable rockets, which seemed impossible a few years back.

We would have already built a space colony by now if we had solved the problems of the cost price of every mission, space radiation, intrinsic inefficiency of chemical fuel, weight load, and much more. If we remain dependent on our usual means, then surely it will take a lot of time and money to even build a base camp on another planet.

Despite the endless hurdles, scientists are working day and night on many innovations and intriguing ideas that might change the course of our space journey. Project RAMA has proposed a unique and faster way to explore space by turning space rocks and asteroids into autonomous spacecraft. It will use robotic processes to transform asteroid elements into programmed automata.

Another innovation is Nasa’s smart spacesuits with stretchable self-healing skin. It will be a hybrid, intelligent, mobile EVA space suit that helps humans detect signals, weather, and survive on Mars missions.

If Elon Musk succeeds in Mars colonization, then we will surely need breathable air. Ivan Ermanoski, an extraordinary research professor at Arizona State University, has proposed that he can help in making that possible through a process called thermal swing sorption/desorption, which is also known as TSSD. TSSD will help in generating breathable oxygen on the red planet. This portable oxygen generator will use 10 times less energy as compared to our other leading methods.

Also, space mining can transform space rockets. Nasa is planning to work on a technique called optical mining. They plan to transform the asteroid using concentrated sunlight into rocket propellants.

Establishing space colonies on other planets will surely mold and transform our human species’ future. Scientists are planning to do so with 3D printers to create 3D-printed homes, which will not only protect you from the outer atmosphere but radiation too.

Virgin Galactic aims to make space tourism active soon. Virgin Galactic has claimed to have already taken around 600 deposits for space passengers booked on the first-ever commercial space flight that might soon take off in the coming few years.

So, the answer to the question of: will we be able to establish space colonization? Well, we can surely say space tourism will be a big thing and a billionaire-making industry in the coming 50 years. As for space colonization, as far as we are going, many private companies will surely succeed in making base camps and transportation camps, and that will surely lead to Mars civilization in the coming 50 years.

We need a habitable atmosphere, where gravity can hold the habitable atmosphere in its grasp and can sustain life. Even if we move to Mars and build artificial gravity and camps for organic sustainability and evolution, it will lead to a generic constraint. It will further lead to organic intelligence species that will evolve on another planet.

But forget about mass emigration from Earth. It will not be possible within such a feasible budget. Also, political obstacles and public opinion do play a part in that. It is quite possible to take measures and transform the earth while preserving what we have.

However, in doing so, we won’t ever get an answer to our prime question, “Are we alone?”.

Chinese Mars Simulator in Gobi Desert

Mars Base 1
(Image Reference: C-Space /
As China continues to grow as a leading superpower in the new century, they have set their sights at space along with just about everything else. And – they are already making some impressive inroads. A few days back, on April 17, 2019 the brand new “Mars Base 1” opened in the Gobi desert, with the goal of simulating a habitat on the red planet. The initial visitors to this facility are teenage students, with the goal of exposing them to and instilling in them the excitement and wonder of a multi-planetary society; at least I would hope that is the goal because it’s a good one!

The base will also be open for tourism soon as well, going to show that China appears to be embracing a more open approach to their space-faring ambitions, and are sharing the steps along the way with educational and economic forces. These two aspects are sure to be force-multipliers to their efforts, and are really the only way to make these sorts of bold projects work, as we enter the second Space Race. Let’s hope the US is taking a hard look at other competitor nations and making sure we not only keep up but stay in the lead. As the Gazette is fond to report, local hero Elon Musk and his SpaceX technology of reusable rockets was the catalyst for this new era, but now, like the T-800 arm and chip, once people know something can be done it is usually a small matter to replicate it. Most other serious space programs in the world are now focusing on re-usability (except for NASA’s SLS, which will hopefully be defunded and scrapped soon). Pushing ahead quickly with a lunar base and then extending the mission to Mars, with the full visibility of the public and the backing of corporate sponsors, is I believe the best, fastest and most likely to succeed path through this new complex landscape!


Space Beer

Vostok Space Beer
(Image Credit: 4 Pines Brewing Company)

For the short history of mankind in space, there has typically been a prohibition on alcohol consumption once you are up there in orbit. Well, more precisely that rule has been applied to American astronauts – I really can’t say about the Cosmonauts except I hope that someone was having a good time up there! The theory of course being that space is a very dangerous place, and it was very expensive to get you up there. As a result, you have to be on your A-game all of the time, conducting important experiments, taking good care of yourself, and not messing up any of the sensitive equipment. Plus due to the outdated methods and equipment still being used to launch goods, it costs about $10,000 per pound to get materials into space. When SpaceX is able to lower that cost (very soon) then firing your case of booze into the heavens with you becomes a lot more doable.

It is a testament to the normalization of space travel that we can now have the conversation about being able to relax in that environment, instead of being a scientist/test pilot/NASA expert 24×7. Granted astronauts in recent times haven’t been all business to a fault, but have made time to show the public the more fun side of space, in an ongoing effort to keep people interested in our future among the stars. One recalls Chris Hadfield and his frequent guitar videos to show us at least a little fun being had while on assignment.

Well, if you want to kick back with a cold one while you listen to Hadfield’s latest live performance, 4 Pines Brewing Company has just the product for you: they have teamed up with Saber Astronautics to create Vostok – The World’s First Beer for Space! They approached this goal as true pioneers and scientists, considering the changes in human physiology effecting alcohol absorption, the challenge of pouring in zero gravity, and even how strange and uncomfortable a beer-burp is up there. I’m just glad that someone is thinking about these things, and it reminds me of the soon-to-be prophetic words from Elon Musk regarding Mars. In his SXSW Q&A, his reply to how we can all help with the space effort was: they will get us there and provide a stable environment where the flowers can bloom, then the entrepreneurs must step up to provide the business and innovation. Small steps like this beer, while seeming perhaps trivial, are actually laying the vital groundwork, critical in allowing basic humanity to exist off of our original home world.

I like to imagine a time in the not-too-distant future where someone will be enjoying the track ‘Space Beer’ by thrash metal stalwarts and beer heroes Tankard, while on the way to the 4th planet with ‘old home’ receding in the background, enjoying a fine Vostok.

First-ever luxury hotel in space

Aurora Station
This is exactly the sort of accelerated pace that I hoped, in my fondest wishes, would be a direct result of the recent Falcon Heavy launch and subsequent spaced Tesla roadster. I am convinced that it will encourage and unleash a flood of entrepreneurial excitement and draw the attention of investors and boardroom executives from all corners of the world. Reading today an announcement of a planned “first ever luxury hotel in space” helps to joyously confirm my hopeful assumptions.

The past three days have seen the Space 2.0 Summit held in San Jose, and I will absolutely have to investigate further what was discussed there, since one of the items to emerge was the Aurora Station project proposed by developer Orion Span. This exciting new company is chartered to “build and sustain human communities in space” and I wish them goodspeed and the best success; as they say, a rising tide raises all boats, and I think this starts to show how Elon has opened the floodgates.

Check out the article at for more details of this new project and how you can reserve your room!