The most beautiful national parks in the world

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National parks are unique in several ways, about 15% of all land and 8% of all water in the world is protected. National parks are protected pockets of nature that offers a unique opportunity for both recreation, science and of course animal and nature protection for future generations.

Fun facts about national parks

Number of national parks: There is no exact number as different countries have different definitions and management systems for protected areas, but there are thousands of national parks globally.

Protected land area: The total protected land area of national parks worldwide is also difficult to determine, but it is in the millions of square kilometers.

Biggest national park: The largest national park in the world is Northeast Greenland National Park, which covers an area of 972,000 square kilometers.

Oldest national park: The oldest national park in the world is Yellowstone National Park in the United States, which was established in 1872.

Here you can find more bucket list ideas.

Reasons why people visit national parks

Scenic beauty: National parks offer breathtaking landscapes, scenic views, and unique geological formations.

Wildlife: Many national parks are home to a diverse range of wildlife, including rare and endangered species, making them popular destinations for wildlife viewing and photography.

Conservation: National parks play a critical role in conserving and protecting natural and cultural resources for future generations.

Outdoor recreation: Many national parks offer opportunities for outdoor activities such as hiking, camping, fishing, and kayaking, making them great destinations for adventure and physical activity.

Education and inspiration: National parks provide educational and inspirational experiences, offering visitors a chance to learn about the history, geology, and ecology of the areas they visit.

Stress relief: Spending time in nature has been shown to reduce stress and improve mental health, making national parks a great escape from the hustle and bustle of daily life.

Our list of beautiful national parks

Let's get down to business, here are some of the most beautiful national parks in the world, you should definitely add some of these to your travel bucket list! Do you know you can make your bucket lists for free here at Humbo.

Torres del Paine National Park

National park in🇨🇱 Chile

Torres del Paine National Park is located in Patagonia, Chile, and is known for its unique and stunning natural beauty. The park features towering granite peaks, shimmering glacial lakes, and rolling grasslands, making it a breathtaking destination for outdoor enthusiasts.

The park is home to a wide range of wildlife, including guanacos, Andean condors, and the world's southernmost population of gray wolves.

Torres del Paine is a popular destination for hiking, with numerous trails that offer incredible views and a chance to experience the park's diverse landscapes.

The park has been recognized for its efforts to promote sustainable tourism, including measures to reduce its environmental impact and educate visitors about the importance of conservation.

Explore Torres del Paine National Park

Banff National Park

National park in🇨🇦 Canadarated
5

On the bucket list for every adventure junkie

Banff National Park is located in the Canadian Rockies (Rocky Mountains) and is the country's oldest and probably most famous national park.

Banff is known for its stunning scenery, including rugged peaks, glaciers, turquoise lakes, and hot springs. The park offers a wide range of outdoor recreation opportunities, including hiking, skiing, snowboarding, and wildlife viewing.

Banff was the first national park in Canada and played a key role in the creation of the country's national park system, making it a significant part of Canadian heritage. Banff is home to a diverse range of wildlife, including grizzly bears, wolves, and mountain goats.

Banff Center is also bringing the best movies and documentaries on the Banff Mountain Film festival World Tour every year.

Banff has a rich history of mountaineering and outdoor adventure, and today it remains a hub for outdoor enthusiasts and adventure-seekers. If you like adventures, Banff is definitely a place for your bucket list

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Safari in Serengeti National Park

National park in🇹🇿 Tanzaniarated
5

Serengeti National Park is located in Tanzania and is one of the world's most famous wildlife reserves. If you want a great safari experience for your bucket list, Serengeti might be the perfect place to visit.

Serengeti is known for its large herds of wildebeest, zebras, and gazelles, as well as its predators, including lions, leopards, and cheetahs. If you are lucky you might just tick of all the big five.

Serengeti is famous for its annual migration, one of the world's largest and most spectacular wildlife migrations, in which millions of wildebeests move across the savanna in search of food and water.

Serengeti is protected by the Tanzanian government and is managed for conservation, providing important habitat for many threatened and endangered species.

Serengeti National Park is a must-visit destination for those interested in wildlife and nature.

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Kakadu National Park

National park in🇦🇺 Australiarated
5

Kakadu National Park is located in Australia's Northern Territory and is one of the country's largest and most iconic national parks.

Kakadu is rich in Indigenous culture and is home to some of Australia's oldest rock art sites, with thousands of rock paintings that tell the stories of the area's traditional owners.

Kakadu is known for its diverse ecosystems, including wetlands, woodlands, and savannas, that support a wide range of wildlife, including saltwater crocodiles, wallabies, and many bird species.

Kakadu is a leader in ecotourism, offering visitors a range of sustainable tourism experiences, including guided walks, wildlife-watching, and cultural tours.

As all national parks Kakadu is protected by the government and is managed for conservation, providing important habitat for many threatened and endangered species.

No matter what time of year you visit Kakadu, there is always something to see and do.

Explore Kakadu National Park

Doi Inthanon National Park

National park in🇹🇭 Thailandrated
4

Doi Inthanon National Park is located in Thailand and is one of the country's most popular national parks. The main park entrance is about 70 km southwest from Chiang Mai city center..

Doi Inthanon is known as "The Roof of Thailand", Doi Inthanon National Park covers an area of 482 km². The park is part of the Himalayan mountain range.

Doi Inthanon is located at a high altitude, making it one of the few places in Thailand where visitors can experience cool weather and mountain landscapes. The park is known for its diverse ecosystems, including montane forests, grasslands, and wetlands, that support a wide range of wildlife, including many bird species and rare flora.

Doi Inthanon is considered sacred by the local hill tribes and is home to several important temples and monuments, making it a destination of cultural and historical significance.

Explore Doi Inthanon National Park

Vatnajökull National Park

National park in🇮🇸 Iceland

Hot springs and one of the largest glaciers in Europe

Vatnajökull National Park is located in Iceland and is one of the country's largest and most popular national parks.

Vatnajökull is home to one of the largest glaciers in Europe, covering an area of over 8,000 square kilometers. The park is known for its breathtaking scenery, including rugged glaciers, towering peaks, and scenic lakes, making it a popular destination for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts. What about trying out glacier hiking, ice climbing or snowmobiling?

The park is known for its unique geology, including hot springs, geysers, and volcanic formations, making it a destination of geological interest.

Vatnajökull is easily accessible from Reykjavik and other parts of Iceland, making it a convenient destination for those traveling to Iceland.

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Kruger National Park

National park in🇿🇦 South Africarated
5

Home to the big five

Kruger National Park is one of the largest game reserves in South Africa and is located in the northeastern part of the country. It covers an area of over 19,000 square kilometers and is home to a wide range of wildlife, including the Big Five (lion, elephant, buffalo, leopard, and rhinoceros). The park is also known for its scenic beauty, with rolling hills, savannas, and forests that support a rich variety of plant and animal life.

Tourists visiting Kruger National Park can experience a range of activities, including self-drive game drives, guided walks, and wildlife-watching from open-air vehicles. The park also offers accommodation options, from luxury lodges to budget-friendly camping sites, making it a convenient destination for visitors with different budgets and travel styles. Whether you're an avid wildlife enthusiast, a nature lover, or just looking for a unique African adventure, Kruger National Park is a great destination to visit.

Explore Kruger National Park

Göreme National Park

National park in🇹🇷 Turkeyrated
5

Hot air baloon is the best way of experience Geröme

Göreme National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in the central part of Turkey's Cappadocia region. The park is known for its unique rock formations, including fairy chimneys, valleys, and cave dwellings, many of which were carved into the soft volcanic tuff rock over thousands of years.

Visitors can explore the park on foot, by hot air balloon, or on horseback, and take in the stunning landscapes, scenic valleys, and ancient cave dwellings. In addition to its natural beauty, Göreme National Park is also a cultural destination, with several important religious sites and rock-cut monasteries, including the Dark Church and the Apple Church.

Explore Göreme National Park

Plitvice Lakes National Park

National park in🇭🇷 Croatiarated
4.8

Plitvice Lakes National Park is located in Croatia and is known for its stunning network of waterfalls and lakes surrounded by dense forests and rolling hills. The park covers an area of over 300 square kilometers and is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna, including endemic species of fish and rare species of birds. Visitors can explore the park on foot, following a network of wooden walkways and bridges that wind through the waterfalls and lakes. The park also offers opportunities for hiking, fishing, and picnicking, as well as scenic boat rides and guided tours.

Explore Plitvice Lakes National Park

Canaima National Park

National park in🇻🇪 Venezuela

The worlds tallest waterfall

Canaima National Park is located in southeastern Venezuela and covers an area of over 3 million hectares. It is known for its stunning landscapes, including the world-famous Angel Falls, the tallest waterfall in the world, and a range of other waterfalls, rivers, and lagoons.

The park is also home to a rich diversity of flora and fauna, including several species of primates, jaguars, and giant otters. Visitors can explore the park on foot, by boat, or by plane, taking in the scenic beauty and wildlife, and experiencing traditional indigenous culture.

While in Venezuela don't miss Canaima!

Explore Canaima National Park

Jiuzhai Valley National Park

National park in🇨🇳 China

Jiuzhaigou Valley National Park is located in the Sichuan province of China and is known for its stunning scenery, including crystal-clear lakes, waterfalls, and hot springs, surrounded by forests, valleys, and snow-capped peaks. The park covers an area of over 720 square kilometers.

This is one of few places in the world where the giant panda lives. Jiuzhaigou was inscribed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site in 1992 and a World Biosphere Reserve in 1997.

Explore Jiuzhai Valley National Park

Arches National Park

National park in🇺🇸 United Statesrated
5

Arches National Park is located in southeastern Utah and is known for its unique geology and stunning rock formations, including over 2,000 natural sandstone arches, spires, and towers. The park covers an area of over 76,000 hectares and is home to a range of diverse landscapes, including canyons, deserts, and high plateaus.

Delicate Arch is one of the park's most iconic landmarks. Arches National Park is also a popular destination for rock climbing, camping, and stargazing.

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The amazing Grand Canyon National Park

National park in🇺🇸 United Statesrated
4.8

Grand Canyon National Park is located in northwestern Arizona and is one of the most iconic natural wonders of the world. The park covers an area of over 1.2 million hectares and is home to a massive and intricately carved canyon, over 277 miles long, up to 18 miles wide, and over a mile deep.

The Grand Canyon is one of the most iconic and breathtaking natural wonders in the world, showcasing millions of years of geological history and offering breathtaking views from the rim, as well as from the river below.

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Kaziranga National Park

National park in🇮🇳 India

Kaziranga National Park is located in the northeastern state of Assam in India and is a popular destination for wildlife enthusiasts, nature lovers, and travelers seeking a unique and memorable experience.

The park is home to a rich and diverse range of flora and fauna, including the one-horned Indian rhinoceros, elephants, tigers, and several species of birds and reptiles.

The park covers an area of over 430 square kilometers and is home to a range of landscapes, including grasslands, wetlands, and forests, providing visitors with breathtaking views and unique opportunities to immerse themselves in nature.

Visitors can take guided wildlife safaris by jeep or elephant to explore the park and see its incredible wildlife up close.

Kaziranga National Park is one of the most important conservation areas in India and is home to several ongoing efforts to protect and conserve its unique and diverse wildlife.

Explore Kaziranga National Park

Komodo National Park

National park in🇮🇩 Indonesiarated
5

Komodo National Park is located in the Indonesian archipelago and encompasses three major islands: Komodo, Rinca, and Padar. It is a popular destination for tourists seeking a unique and unforgettable experience in one of the world's most biodiverse regions.

The park is known for its incredible wildlife, including the Komodo dragon, the largest species of lizard on the planet, as well as a range of other unique and exotic species, including birds, monkeys, and marine life.

Visitors can take guided tours or go on independent treks to explore the park's rugged and pristine landscapes, including forests, hills, and beaches. The park also offers opportunities for snorkeling, diving, and kayaking.

Explore Komodo National Park

Galápagos National Park

National park in🇪🇨 Ecuador

Galapagos National Park is located in the Galapagos Islands, a UNESCO World Heritage site located off the coast of Ecuador. The park covers over 97% of the total land area of the Galapagos Islands and is considered one of the most important protected areas in the world.

The Galapagos Islands are famous for their unique and diverse array of wildlife, including giant tortoises, marine iguanas, and a range of bird species found nowhere else on earth. Visitors to the park can take guided tours to see these incredible creatures in their natural habitats, as well as go snorkeling or diving to see the stunning underwater landscapes.

Galapagos National Park is sure to be a highlight of any trip to South America.

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Yosemite National Park

National park in🇺🇸 United Statesrated
4.7

Yosemite National Park is located in the Sierra Nevada Mountains in California, and is one of the most popular and iconic national parks in the United States. The park covers an area of over 748,000 acres.

Half dome, Upper and Lower Yosemite falls, Glacier Point and El Capitan is some of the amazing and scenic places to experience while in Yosemite national park.

Yosemite is also known for its rich cultural history, including the Mariposa Grove of giant sequoias, one of the largest collections of these ancient trees in the world.

Explore Yosemite National Park

Kidepo Valley National Park

National park in🇺🇬 Uganda

Kidepo Valley National Park is located in the northeast region of Uganda and is considered one of the country's most beautiful and remote national parks. The park covers an area of over 1,442 square km and is home to a diverse range of wildlife, including elephants, lions, cheetahs, and over 475 species of birds.

The park's remote location also means that it sees fewer visitors compared to other national parks in Uganda, making it a great option for those seeking a more intimate and serene wildlife experience.

Explore Kidepo Valley National Park

Virgin Islands National Park

National park in🇺🇸 United States

Virgin Islands National Park is located on the island of St. John in the United States Virgin Islands. The park covers over two-thirds of the island and is known for its stunning beaches, turquoise waters, and lush tropical landscapes. Visitors to the park can enjoy a range of outdoor activities, including snorkeling, diving, hiking, and camping, as well as scenic drives and guided tours.

The park is also home to a rich and diverse array of wildlife, including sea turtles, iguanas, and over 200 species of birds. Whether you're a nature lover, an outdoor enthusiast, or simply seeking a unique and relaxing vacation destination, a visit to Virgin Islands National Park is sure to be a memorable experience. The park's location in the Caribbean also makes it a popular destination for those seeking sun, sand, and sea.

Explore Virgin Islands National Park

Sarek National Park

National park in🇸🇪 Sweden

Sarek National Park is located in the northern region of Sweden and is considered one of the country's most remote and pristine national parks. The park covers an area of over 2,000 square km. Sarek is a high alpine area where the Sami people have lived from time immemorial. Sarek is a part of the World Heritage Laponia including

Visitors to the park can enjoy a range of outdoor activities, including hiking, camping, fishing, and wildlife viewing. The park is also home to a rich and diverse array of wildlife, including reindeer, wolverines, and a range of bird species.

Here are our bucket list for Sweden.

Explore Sarek National Park

Maasai Mara National Reserve

National park in🇰🇪 Kenyarated
5

The Maasai Mara is a wildlife reserve in southwestern Kenya that is part of the greater Serengeti ecosystem. It is famous for its large populations of African wildlife, including the big five (lion, elephant, leopard, buffalo, and rhino), as well as the annual wildebeest migration.

Visitors can go on guided game drives to see the wildlife, hot air balloon rides for a unique view of the reserve, or visit Maasai villages to learn about the local culture. The Maasai Mara is a popular destination, there is multiple lodges and camp sites within the park, staying in the park makes the visit even better. Ask your guide for local recommendations.

Explore Maasai Mara National Reserve

Yellowstone National Park

National park in🇺🇸 United Statesrated
4.5

Yellowstone National Park is a unique and protected area in the western United States known for its geothermal features, including geysers, hot springs, and mud pots, as well as its diverse wildlife, such as grizzly bears, wolves, and herds of elk and bison.

Yellowstone was the first national park in the world helping set standards for many coming parks.

Three things you have to see in Yellowstone

Old Faithful Geyser: This famous geyser erupts every 45 minutes to two hours and is a unique and spectacular sight.

Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone: This stunning canyon features bright yellow walls and two stunning waterfalls, the Upper and Lower Falls.

Yellowstone Lake: The largest high-altitude lake in North America, Yellowstone Lake offers stunning views of the surrounding mountains and is a popular spot for boating and fishing.

Explore Yellowstone National Park

Jotunheimen National Park

National park in🇳🇴 Norwayrated
5

Jotunheimen National Park is a stunning natural wonder located in central Norway. Here are some key facts and features:

  • Jotunheimen is Norway's largest national park, covering an area of approximately 3,500 square kilometers.
  • The park is known for its dramatic mountain landscape, which includes Norway's two highest peaks: Galdhøpiggen (2,469 meters) and Glittertind (2,464 meters).
  • Jotunheimen is also home to numerous glaciers, rivers, and lakes, including the famous Gjende and Bygdin lakes.
  • Visitors to the park can enjoy a variety of outdoor activities, such as hiking, climbing, fishing, and skiing (in the winter months).
  • There are many well-marked trails in the park, ranging from easy strolls to challenging multi-day hikes.
  • The park is home to a variety of wildlife, including reindeer, elk, wolverines, and golden eagles.
  • Accommodation options in the park range from basic campsites to luxurious mountain lodges.
  • The nearest towns to Jotunheimen are Lom and Otta, both of which have a range of services and amenities for visitors.

We wish you a great nature experience in Jotunheimen national park!

Explore Jotunheimen National Park

Abisko National Park

National park in🇸🇪 Sweden

Abisko National park is situated in the north of Sweden. In the heart of Lapland's alpine expanse lies a timeless region characterized by majestic mountains and a stunning valley known as Abiskodalen. This picturesque landscape features colorful alpine meadows, serene rapids, and Scandinavia's largest alpine lake. In the summertime, visitors can bask in the constant daylight and catch a glimpse of the mesmerizing midnight sun.

Abisko National Park has something to offer year-round. The tourist station is now open all months of the year, but we would recomend visting during winter or summer season.

Read more here.

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Corcovado National Park

National park in🇨🇷 Costa Ricarated
5

Don't miss this beautiful national park in Costa Rica

Corcovado National Park is located on Costa Rica's Osa Peninsula and it's considered to be one of the most biologically-diverse places in the world. Its unique features are what make this national park so special: rainforests, cloud forests, mangrove swamps, and coral reefs are all found within the park. It is home to a diverse variety of plants and animals, some of which are endangered or rare, making Corcovado National Park a must-see destination for nature lovers. Visitors have the opportunity to observe all kinds of wildlife such as wild cats, tapirs, peccaries, jaguars, harpy eagles, and four species of monkey! Corcovado National Park is truly a stunning and unique place that will not disappoint.

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Glacier Bay National Park

National park in🇺🇸 United States

Glacier Bay National Park, located in Alaska, is widely recognized as being one of the most beautiful national parks in the world. From vast glaciers to vibrant wildlife, the park is a mesmerizing display of nature untouched. It's a place of profound beauty, where you can get closer to wild Alaska than ever. Glacier Bay offers a variety of activities that will take your breath away: you can capture stunning views of glaciers calving - when large chunks of ice break off and crash into the ocean - or take a kayak tour and explore the bay’s icy tidal waters in search of wildlife. No matter what adventure you decide to undertake, Glacier Bay National Park is a true jewel of our planet, and it's one of the world's most remarkable national parks.

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Ranthambhore National Park

National park in🇮🇳 Indiarated
5

Ranthambore National Park is a beautiful gem, situated in the Sawai Madhopur district of eastern Rajasthan in India. The sheer beauty of this park, combined with its rich diversity of flora and fauna, makes it a must-visit destination. It is home to a broad range of species, including tigers, leopards, nilgai, chausingha, sloth bears, sambar, chital, hyena, jackal, jungle cats, and many many more. A safari through the park is an amazing experience, and you can even spot spotted deer and a huge variety of birds as you pass through. Not only is this park great for its wildlife, but its picturesque greenery, lush forests, and mesmerizing landscapes are unmatched. Make sure to check out Ranthambore National Park if you're ever looking for an unforgettable adventure!

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Manuel Antonio National Park

National park in🇨🇷 Costa Ricarated
4.3

Manuel Antonio National Park in Costa Rica is renowned for its breathtaking beauty and unique biodiversity. This rugged paradise is located on the Central Pacific coast of Costa Rica and is the country’s most visited national park. It features white sand beaches, a lush rainforest, a wide variety of wildlife, and stunning views of the Pacific Ocean. Manuel Antonio is known for its abundance of wildlife, including three species of monkeys, over 100 species of birds, white-faced coatis, and iguanas. Visitors can explore the park on foot or take a guided tour for a better understanding of the local wildlife. With its stunning beauty and unique wildlife, Manuel Antonio National Park is definitely worth a visit while you're in the magical country of Costa Rica.

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Hardangervidda National Park

National park in🇳🇴 Norwayrated
5

The biggest national park of Norway

Hardangervidda national park in Norway is one of the most beautiful national parks in the world. Located in the Hardanger Plateau, the natural landscape here features dramatic mountains, tundra, rivers, and crystal clear lake. With its 3,422 square kilometers the park is the largest in Norway and is home to over 1,000 species of flora and fauna, including the rare wild reindeer. The pristine nature of Hardangervidda means it's never too crowded, making it the perfect spot for hikers, backpackers, cyclists, and even fishermen. With its towering mountains and picturesque fjord, the park boasts some of the most breathtaking views in Europe. Whether you're in search of a hiking adventure or simply want to take in the stunning natural beauty, Hardangervidda National Park is a must-visit for nature lovers.

Explore Hardangervidda National Park

Lake Nakuru National Park

National park in🇰🇪 Kenya

Lake Nakuru National Park in Kenya is one of the most spectacular parks in the world. Located in the Great Rift Valley, the park is best known for its millions of vibrant and colorful flamingos that call it home. As well as the flamingos you can also find a variety of other birds and wildlife, including baboons, zebras, impalas, endangered Rothschild giraffes, buffaloes, and even the occasional leopard or rhino. This stunning landscape is comprised of both shoreline and grassland. While exploring the park you will certainly be awed by the wide variety of flora and fauna, the beautiful views of Lake Nakuru, and the breathtaking sunsets. It's a great place to spend a day or two, and it's sure to create wonderful memories that will last a lifetime.

Find more beautiful national parks of Kenya

Explore Lake Nakuru National Park

Yakushima National Park

National park in🇯🇵 Japan

Yakushima national park is Japan's hidden gem. Located off the coast of Kyushu, it is known for its stunningly beautiful landscape that looks straight out of a fairytale. This national park is blanketed with a mix of lush forests, crystal clear streams, towering mountains, and dramatic seascapes. The crown jewel of the park is Yakusugi, the largest Cedar tree in the world that is over 7,000 years old. With its unique ecology and unique range of plants and animals, Yakushima national park is a great destination for hikers, nature lovers, and wildlife photographers alike.

Explore Yakushima National Park

Fiordland National Park

National park in🇳🇿 New Zealand

Fiordland National Park in New Zealand is the epitome of beauty. Located in the southwest corner of the South Island of New Zealand, Fiordland National Park is a huge area of rugged and wild terrain that includes some of the most spectacular sights on the planet. From shimmering rivers, to thick forests, to majestic mountains, Fiordland National Park will blow your mind with its unrivaled beauty. One of the most stunning spectacles in Fiordland National Park is the Milford Sound, an eight-mile fjord with sheer cliffs that plummet to the sea below and waterfalls thundering down its sides. This incredible piece of nature will make you feel like you are in a whole new world. With some of the world’s rarest wildlife, stunning views of the Southern Alps, and countless hikes and walking trails, Fiordland National Park is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful national parks in the world.

More places to visit in New Zealand

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