Best Places To Watch The Sunset In The World

The setting sun is more than just a daily ritual—it's an example of just how beautiful the natural world can be.[slideshow:1279]

When people are lucky enough to marvel at the sun dipping below the horizon, the display is celebrated as more than just another day passing into night. It brings people out to watch, tour operators plan entire trips around the sunset and the transition inspires art and entire festivals.

In Key West, both tourists and locals head to Mallory Square to participate in a nightly festival celebrating the magnificent sunset. Over on the island of Bora Bora, some travelers take private sunset cruises, complete with champagne and unmatched views.

There are plenty of places to watch the sun setting, but here are 10 that are particularly spectacular.

Ipanema Beach—Brazil

Ipanema Beach is the iconic sandy spot in Rio de Janeiro that lends beach-wear trends to the rest of the world. The beach is so famous it's even been named in a song from the 60s, and for good reason. Ipanema is well known for wild surf, fantastic sunsets and posts that divide up the beach into cultural sections. To see the surrounding area, take a bike tour or take a cable car up Pao de Acucar.

Key West—Florida

The sunset at Key West is so magnificent there is a nightly festival to celebrate it. Each evening locals and tourists from around the world head to Mallory Square two hours before the sunset to enjoy local musicians, street performers and food vendors. When the time comes, the sun dips into the Gulf of Mexico in a magnificent array of pink and orange, while the crowd watches in awe.

Check out 8 other Spectacular Sunsets