The final 28 sites in contention to be one of the Official New7Foundation Wonders of Nature were announced this week in Switzerland. Now it is up to the public to vote on the seven wonders.
The 28 finalists represent a range of natural wonders including rivers, islands, waterfalls and rock formations, and hail from all corners of the Earth. Among the better-known names are the Amazon River, Table Mountain and the Black Forest in Germany. The list, however, also recognizes some less-familiar wonders such as Azerbaijan's Mud Volcanoes, South Korea's Jeju Island and El Yunque in Puerto Rico.
The Grand Canyon has made it through to the final as the sole site located in the continental United States, and Fundy Island in Nova Scotia is Canada's only representation.
The campaign itself was born of the success of another campaign to find the New 7 Wonders of the World. The new campaign's slogan explains that "if we want to save anything, we first need to truly appreciate it!"
Voting is currently open and will continue for the next two years. The foundation's Web site will update voters on rankings throughout the voting period. The first is scheduled for July 28.
Bernard Weber, founder and president of the New 7 Wonders Foundation, has said that the campaign "is an extraordinary achievement and the eyes of the planet will be upon these 28 stunning locations." Over 1 billion people are expected to cast their vote.
The public will be able to vote via the Web site, where they will also be able to find links and descriptions of all the finalists, as well as by telephone. Voting by phone requires voters to key in a four-digit code for their chosen Wonder, and can be done by dialing +41 77 312 4041. Calls are not free and the costs vary depending on regional providers.