Is It Natural or Manmade?


By: Robin Tyler

5 Min Quiz

Image: Shutterstock

About This Quiz

The earth is a staggeringly beautiful place filled with unbelievable sights found all over the globe. 

Of course, we remember the natural wonders of the world like the Great Barrier Reef off the coast of Australia, the Grand Canyon in the United States of America, Mount Everest in Nepal and Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe, Africa. 

These are all obviously natural, incredible places that have been created at some point in the earth's long life. But there are also many natural places on this earth that can fool you. 

How? Well in the fact that they actually seem manmade, but simply are not. They have been formed over millions and millions of years, normally by erosion of some kind, most notably wind or water erosion. 

And then there is the complete opposite.

Over the years, we have become so good at making many manmade objects look totally natural. We make them look like they have existed on the planet since the dawn of time. Lakes, mountains, rock formations - you name it and humans can make them. But did you know we can also make precious minerals as well?

So will you be able to tell the difference between a natural or manmade thing from just an image?

Let's see how well you do!

What a beautiful setting! But are these 'stepping stones' natural or manmade?

Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland is filled with hundreds and hundreds of what appear to be stepping stones leading out to sea. These would seem to have been deliberately placed but are totally natural and were formed during volcanic eruptions.


Look at those massive stones! Did man do this or nature?

How these rock ever got to Salisbury plain in Great Britain, no one knows. In fact, it seems they came from miles and miles away. Stonehenge is certainly manmade.


Is this rose manmade or natural?

No, these roses do not appear in nature but are produced artificially by humans.


Are these basins found in Turkey natural or manmade?

Pamukkale contains many basins filled with water which has a white appearance thanks to calcite deposits. This looks like a massive outdoor bath built by humans in times gone by but again, its all natural.


This body of water has a surface area of 2,030 miles. It's huge but is it manmade or not?

Lake Nasser has a surface area of 2,030 miles is 341 miles long and 22 miles wide at its widest part. It is also 600 feet deep. This impressive body of water is all manmade.


Found in the Sahara desert, the structure in this image can be seen from space. Does it occur naturally or is it manmade?

Also called the Richat Structure, this rock structure stands 650 feet high and is 30 miles in diameter. It can be seen from space. Originally, it was thought to have been formed from a meteor impact but now it is believed it was a product of a symmetrical uplift that has been eroded over time.


Surfs up! Found in the Vermilion Cliffs National Monument in northern Arizona, do you think this is natural or constructed?

A place of stunning beauty, the likes of this rock formation are not seen elsewhere. It is all perfectly natural, however.


Are these manmade structures at the bottom of a lake or are they natural? You decide, please.

Yes, there are pyramid structures at the bottom of Rock Lake in Wisconsin. Surely they are natural? No, say experts who believe they may have been built by the Incas.


Millions and millions of stones. Which answer below best describes how they got there?

Millions of stones have been stacked at Mystery Hill, New Hampshire, but for what reason, no one really knows. Certainly manmade.


From the image shown here, do you think this is manmade or natural?

The Longsheng Terrace in China was was actually built during the Ming Dynasty. It certainly does look fairly natural but it is manmade.


A sphinx in Pakistan? Yes, but but who put it there? Nature or man?

This rock outcrop, found in Hingol National Park in Pakistan does resemble the sphinx as seen in Egypt. It is all natural, however, and actually formed by winds over millions of years.


Is the structure in this image natural or manmade?

Well, it certainly looks like a manmade arena that was either covered by water or fell into the sea but in truth, this spectacular site is all natural. The Yonajuni Monument, or underwater arena, in Japan is a popular diving spot.


Found in South Africa, is the massive hole in the ground natural or manmade?

Yes, the Big Hole in Kimberley, South Africa, is totally manmade and as a result of man’s craving for diamonds. Miners rushed to Kimberley when diamonds were first found and simply dug downward. Incredible.


These protrusions are found in Turkey. Do you think they are an act of nature or human-built​?

For as far as you can see, these strange rock formations jut out of the landscape in Cappadocia, Turkey. When you are close enough, you can see they are natural but from afar, they seem manmade.


Is this body of water natural or manmade? It is found in Ghana and covers 3,275 square miles.

Lake Volta in Ghana is a manmade lake that covers an area of 3,275 square miles! Incredible.


Providence Canyon is found in Georgia in the United States. Did Mother Nature shape it with her hand or did humans with lots of hard work and tools?

It sure looks natural but Providence Canyon is all manmade.


A girl's best friend! Is the one shown in this image natural or manmade?

Bet you got this one wrong. Yes, diamonds can actually be grown in a lab.


More love! Natural or manmade?

Yet another heart shape in a rock, except this one penetrates right through. It must be manmade right? It’s not. This beautiful rock outcrop is found in the Valley of Enchantment, California.


Are the colors produced in this pool natural or manmade?

The colors of Morning Glory Pool in Yellowstone Park. Although the pool is a natural structure, the colors it produces have changed over the years. The bright, vivid colors are the result of people throwing pennies, rocks and other things into the pool. This caused the temperature to drop and changes to occur.


It's not as obvious as you think. Did the animal in the image occur naturally in nature since the beginning of time or are they manmade or bred?

Yes, its true. Domesticated cows simply didn’t exist. Their forefathers were known as aurochs. Eventually, cows were bred from more docile animals that were interbred and led to the cow.


The Honghe Hani terraces are found in China. Are they formed by man or nature?

Covering 1 million acres, these rice terraces were made by man over 1,200 years ago.


Found in New Zealand, are these large boulders formed by nature or manmade?

Marbles for giants? These almost perfectly round boulders, although they look as they are placed by humans at some point, are perfectly natural. Some are 9 feet in diameter. They are known as the Moeraki boulders.


Is the human face found in this mountainside natural or sculptured by man?

A human face carved out of the mountain side, the Great Stone Face is anything but that. Visible from the correct angle, the face was actually formed by glaciers. It is found in the White Mountains in New Hampshire.


Another one that is not that obvious, is the pearl shown here natural or made with the help of man?

Finding enough pearls in nature to fuel the jewelry industry is simply impossible. For that reason, pearls are made by oysters in a cultured environment with everything controlled by human intervention.


Found in Bulgaria, is this beautiful area naturally occurring or made by man?

Pobiti Kamani (The Stone Desert) in Bulgaria is an incredible rock formation that seems like it must have been placed by humans. This is, in fact, a desert and only one of a few in Europe. Some stone columns stand up to 7 meters high.


Known as the Fly Geyser, is this structure natural or not?

A drilling expedition that went wrong resulted in Fly Geyser. It is found in Nevada in the United States.


Is the Amazon Basin natural or manmade?

What? Yes, the tribes living in the Amazon certainly sculptured the Amazon Basin as their needs required, planting, terracing, redirecting rivers and performing many other activities that changed the basin over time.


Lake Powell. Is it manmade or natural?

Found in the United States, this lake was formed when the Colorado River flooded into Glen Canyon. This happened during the construction of the Glen Canyon Dam.


This structure is twice the size of the Hoover Dam. Did it occur naturally or was it made by man?

The beaver dam at Wood Buffalo Park in Canada can actually be seen from space. It is 2,970 feet in length, twice the size of the Hoover dam.


The Analavory cold water geysers are found in Madagascar. Are they naturally occurring or mamade?

Although they look natural, these cold water geysers are not. They were formed as the result of underground mining operations.


Another body of water but is it natural or manmade?

Lake Piva is in Montenegro. It may be manmade but it sure is beautiful.


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