"Everything is down there, and you're almost looking back at creation in a way. You feel a little bit like it's the Garden of Eden, like you're the first person to ever see this."

The accommodations are luxurious, imaginative and fanciful, she said.

Rates start at $720 per person, which includes meals, drinks and scheduled safari activities.

4. The Springs Resort & Spa, Costa Rica

For a bit of a thrill with your beautiful view, why not stay near a volcano?

This boutique hotel sits on a mountain ridge less than four miles north of Costa Rica's Arenal Volcano but is "safely outside the government declared danger zone," the resort says on its website.

"When I was there, it didn't blow, I was really bummed," Veith said. "(But) you can see the eruptions when the lava is flowing from the volcano."

(Arenal was Costa Rica's most active volcano until 2010 but entered into a resting phase last fall.)

Observe the volcano from your room or from one of the resort's 18 pools and natural hot mineral springs.

Rates start at about $385 a night.

5. Hotel Villa Ducale, Sicily

This boutique hotel features just 11 double rooms and six suites, but there is nothing small about the sweeping views.

Each room has a private balcony or terrace that lets guests take in vistas of Giardini Naxos Bay, Mount Etna, Italy's mainland coastline or the Strait of Messina.

The Hotel Villa Ducale was among the winners of TripAdvisor's 2011 Travelers' Choice awards -- chosen by the site's members as one of the top 10 luxury hotels in the world.

Rates start at about $285 a night in September.

6. The Cambrian Hotel, Switzerland

Expect endless mountain views from this picturesque location in the village of Adelboden in the Swiss Alps.

Built in the late 19th century and revamped in recent years, the hotel is a scenic and luxurious base for hiking and mountain biking in the summer, and world-class skiing in the winter.

And when it comes to promising relaxation for guests, the resort takes a whimsical approach.

"Just look at the cows reclining in the meadows outside," the hotel instructs on its website. "They don't look stressed, do they?"

Rates start at about $225 in September.

7. Hayman Island Resort, Australia

A favorite with honeymooners, this five-star resort is on a private island within the Great Barrier Reef.

Guests can take in uninterrupted views of the Coral Sea and the Whitsundays -- a chain of islands known for their idyllic white sand beaches.

Then there are the underwater vistas -- Hayman offers memorable snorkeling and scuba experiences, as well as night diving on the Great Barrier Reef.