Here’s a hypothetical situation. Imagine we got visited by aliens who came from another star system. Not to conquer us or to share their secrets. Instead, imagine they just came as tourists visiting our Solar System. Now, here’s a question. What should we show them as our best tourist attraction?
What Is a ‘Good Tourist Attraction’
Let’s start with making our definitions clear. Every good tourist place has some kind of place of interest or an attraction. It is usually something unique for this particular place that you can’t find anywhere else. It might be a landscape phenomenon, like a mountain or a waterfall. It might be a natural phenomenon, like a forest or a habitat for a certain species. It can be an artificial thing that has some significance, like a cool architectural creation or a thing with some historical significance to it.
So, when it comes to choosing a tourist attraction within our Solar System, it has to be something that the visiting aliens don’t have at home, whichever planetary system they came from. Something they definitely didn’t see in other places they could have visited in the Universe.
Of course, we all understand that bringing aliens into this is just a bait that makes any story more interesting by engaging with your imagination. But the real question here is not that funny or hypothetical. It actually makes a lot of sense and is rather important for Astronomy.
If we take away the ‘alien factor’, the real question we’re trying to find an answer to is the following:
Is there something truly unique in our Solar System? Something that you are unlikely to see in any other places of the Universe?
Now, when we have the rules of the game established and all the definitions sorted out, let’s explore the options that we have.
The first thing that probably comes to mind is biological life. After all, that is what defines our place in the vast emptiness of the Cosmos. We don’t see any evidence that life as we know it exists anywhere else. That is what the Fermi Paradox is all about.
But, with the rules of the game we just established, this point kind of eliminates itself. If there are alien tourists coming from somewhere else, it
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