There are tons of optical illusions around the web, but these quirky photos are so mind-boggling, they made us do a double take. Some of these photos were so hard to understand at first glance, they left us stumped for a few seconds.
Who’s ready for their mind to play tricks on them? If you think you'd know a decorated Christmas tree from a rocket launch at first glance, you might overestimate your abilities to see these crazy illusions...
An Armadillo That Looks Like a Baby Dragon
No, we aren’t looking at baby pictures of one of the three dragons from “Game of Thrones.” This baby armadillo just happens to look like Rhaegal, Daenerys Targaryen's ferocious companion on the TV show. Well, he may be an armadillo, but he’s got 100% dragon blood for sure.
Not Our Grandma’s Knitting
Is 2020 so boring, that even spiders are getting into crochet to pass the time? Nope, this is a frozen spider web that happens to look like someone’s macramé project. Hey! At least the spiders didn’t get frozen too!
Luna and Artemis’ True Doppelgangers
This white cat’s shadow almost looks like a black cat is standing by its side. And that’s because it is! There are actually two cats sitting side by side – a handsome white cat and a furry black sidekick. Don’t they look exactly like Luna and Artemis from Sailor Moon?
Not Just One of Van Gogh’s Paintings
At first glance, this looks like an obscure painting by Van Gogh. After all, his dramatic signature brushstrokes are easy to spot. But this painting optical illusion is actually just a pattern a Redditor found on some rocks that look like a close up of “Starry Night” by Van Gogh.
Christmas Trees or Rocket Launch?
The weather outside if frightful, and these Christmassy trees are so delightful, right? Well, they are! But doesn’t this photo also look like a couple of rockets launching into space? We may not be witnessing an epic rocket launch but these trees wrapped in Christmas lights are just as beautiful.
An Amazonian Forest? Think Again
This aerial shot does a great job at capturing the larger-than-life Amazonian forest. This photo even looks like the establishing scenes of an epic adventure movie like “Jurassic Park.” But wait a minute! This isn’t a photo of a paradisiacal valley. It’s just the top of a fence post. Go figure!
A Rare Photo Opportunity
Landscape photographer Francisco Sojuel captured an astounding image that looks like an asteroid ring wrapped around the moon. But a quick double take will show this photo is nothing but smoke and mirrors (and a tricky angle!). This is actually a sheet-like cirrostratus cloud. They usually appear 12 to 24 hours before a snow storm or rain storm, and they’re made out of ice crystals.
Someone Adopted a Bear
Whoever adopted this baby bear is in for a rude awakening when it finally grows old and becomes a terrifying beast. Oh, wait. Never mind. It’s just a doggo with a bear-like hairdo right after taking a bath. Well, it’s un-bear-ably cute either way.
This Kitty Just Had a Great Idea
Cats get lots of ideas. Sadly, most of them involve breaking lamps, clawing a sofa, sleeping on a keyboard, or running around at 5 a.m. to wake their owners up. But this is just another optical illusion that makes it look like there’s a light bulb on top of this kitty’s head.
Don’t Get Hiss-terical Just Yet!
Don’t let it fool ya! Those are not venomous snakes looming in the shadows of a wild and primeval forest. While this mysterious creature resembles two threatening predators, it’s actually the wings of the beautiful Atlas moth.
The Sky is Lava
The first thing we thought when we laid eyes on this pic was “Mother Nature really outdid herself with these molten lava flows.” After all, there isn’t a greatest artist on earth than her! But after doing a quick double take we realized this is just a gorgeous shot of the sun setting behind clouds.
The Cutest Baby Hippo on the Land
What happens when someone shaves a baby guinea pig and takes a photo from the side? We end up with a cute baby hippopotamus lookalike. If we saw this at a pet shop, we’d definitely have to do a double take.
A Recipe That Calls for Two Cups of Cuteness
If it weren’t for this cat’s adorable little face, we would’ve assumed this was nothing but a bowl of flour that someone left on the kitchen countertop before fetching other ingredients to bake a cake. This proves we should always double check before throwing anything in the oven!
A Living and Breathing Pine Cone
Is it a hedgehog? Is it a piece of tree bark? Or is it a pine cone? Nope, it’s actually an adorable baby bird that was found near the border between Brazil and Argentina. Luckily, the person who found it posted a photo on Reddit and some commenters identified it as a Striped Cuckoo.
Snow Has a Mind of Its Own
The owner of this car probably wants to protect it from the harsh winter months, but they didn’t throw a fuzzy blanket on their car to keep it warm at night. It’s actually some snow that for some mysterious reason ended up perfectly folded on top of the car.
An Eggs-quisite Beach
Ahh! This paradisiacal beach is exactly what the doctor ordered! Visitors can relax next to crystal-clear turquoise waters and picturesque mountains cliffs that engulf Seychelles beach. Not only that, but they’ll also get to rest their backs on the soft rounded pebbles around the water. Doesn't it look like someone scattered a bunch of hard boiled eggs on the beach?
The Most Picture-Perfect Illusion
There’s a great many incredible artists whose realistic paintings get mistaken for photographs. But this isn’t a painting or a photograph. It’s actually the window of a house that’s sitting along a beautiful coast.
Bad Taxidermy or Just a Snapchat Filter?
This creature looks like the type of taxidermy “décor” we’d expect to find at a cheap hotel, complete with fake googly eyes and a vacant stare. But this odd-looking pup is actually Jubilee, a real-life dog who happens to be a bit unphotogenic. Hey! She’s serving some taxidermy realness! And despite having a bad angle, she’s still oh-so cute.
Ever Been to the Everglades?
Doesn’t this shot look like someone flew over the Everglades in Florida and snapped a photo? Well, as tricky as it sounds, this is nothing but a big old puddle of water by a rock. But it does look like the type of swampland where alligators and other wildlife roam free, doesn’t it?
A Colossal Lego Playground
Nope, these aren't part of a special edition all-white Lego set. It’s actually what a company’s cooling system looks like after a snow storm. Doesn’t it look like a massive Lego set only a giant could play with?
Are We Seeing Stars?
This beautiful flower looks like something that came straight out of the movie “Avatar.” But these very-much real “galaxy flowers” are a unique hybrid known as the Night Sky Petunia, a flower that’s known for its constellation-inspired blossoms that would steal any gardener’s heart.
Ready For a Fiesta!
This cute-as-a-button turtle looks like it’s ready to blast some mariachi music, grill some carne, and dance until the late hours of the night with its adorable Mexican sombrero. But take a second glance! It’s actually this turtle's shell.
Someone Ran into a Baby Dinosaur
This tiny fellow looks like it came out of “Jurassic Park,” but this isn't a 3D rendering of a dinosaur or an intricate sculpture. This rare creature is a baby Snapping Turtle, and it's just as real as every one of us. Its lifespan is about 30 years. But given the right conditions, it can live up to 50 years!
The Uncanny Blue Mosaic Illusion
Stained glass art isn’t easy. Not only does it take incredible attention to detail but it also takes a lot of practice to be able to cut through glass while sticking each piece next to the other. But this isn’t a close up of stained glass artwork. This is actually a photo of rice fields taken from above.
This Jumping Dog’s Limbs Have Disappeared
This fluff puddle likes to jump over grates on the street while they’re walking, but when they do so, their little arms and legs disappear into their fluffy body, creating this absolutely hilarious illusion.
The Reflection of the Lamp in a Pair of Glasses
Imagine the surprise to find your own glasses looking back at you! The reflection of this perfectly placed lamp looks exactly like a pair of bloodshot eyes, which would make anyone working from home jump out of their chair.
A Black Hole Has Appeared on a Pillow
Having a black cat comes with tons of surprises. They’ll always be hidden at night, in shadows and under the table. But they also create some pretty mysterious photo ops when these bundles of joy snuggle up in a perfect ball.
Frost on the Roof of a Car Looks Like a Satellite Shot of Earth
At a first glance, this photo looks like a photo of the planet Earth taken from outer space, complete with cloud formations and islands visible. But it is actually frost that collected on a car’s roof overnight and what looks like could formations is really just ice.
This Lake View Yard Looks Like A Path to the Sky
The cloudy blue sky reflecting off of this crystal clear lake looks like something that would only exist in a work of art. It totally seems as though the dock is leading directly into a sunny sky.
This Pup Looks Like He Was Cut in Half
Oh no! This log creates the illusion that the poor dog in this photo was victim to a magician’s ‘saw an audience member in half’ trick! Luckily, as anyone can tell from the nonchalant expression on this dog’s face, he’s completely fine.
The Reflection of a Bakery’s Goods in the Window
It looks as if someone is attempting to steal today’s pies and bread from their local bakery! But actually, it is just the reflection that makes it appear as if all of the baked goods are located in the back of a pickup truck when they’re actually safely stored inside.
When the Sun is Directly Overhead, There Are No Shadows
This image might look like a screenshot taken in a video game with poor graphics, but it’s actually a photo taken outside of a gas station in Hawaii while the sun was directly overhead. It must have been so much stranger to witness this phenomenon in person.
These Dogs Look Like They Have Joined Together
Is this Cerberus’s long lost brother? No, it’s just two normal dogs, one of which happens to be invading the other’s personal space. But they’re both good boys who deserve a pet on the head from their owner.
Two Pigeons Perched on a Ledge Overlooking a Parking Lot
This is what it looks like when a couple of pigeons forget where they parked. Kidding, it’s actually a picture taken from the second story of the parking lot, where these two little guys were standing on the ledge.
Snow Melting Off of the Roof Looks Like a Tornado
When an object, like this icicle, perfectly lines up with the horizon, it can create some pretty strange illusions. This normal piece of ice looks like its a twisting and turning ice tornado that will soon destroy everything around it.
Where Are the Bride’s Legs?
This bride was so happy when she got to view her wedding photos, but her sister was just confused. When she posted this photo online, she captioned it, “For the past 10 minutes I've been trying to explain to my sister-in-law that it looks like her legs are over her husbands shoulders...she doesn't see it.”
The Drinks Look Like Bar Stools
At a first glance, this just looks like a photo of any normal bar with an array of bar stools. But after a second look, its easy to see that those bar stools are really drinks with foamy tops sitting on the top of the bar!
Where Did the Cat’s Body Go?
This cat looks like it’s auditioning for a bit part in “Beetlejuice” as a cat who got in a strange and unfortunate accident. So where is its body? It’s hidden under the folds of the cover of the cushion, completely camouflaging his body.
A Kite Sails the Seven Seas
This perfectly timed photo makes it look like this pirate ship kite is actually sailing on the water. It’s just a kite in the air, but the way it is perfectly aligned with the horizon would fool anyone.
A Floating Cruise Ship at the Coal Harbor
The angle of this photo makes it look like this cruise ship has rested on two spokes high above the ground. That looks like a very dangerous place to park a ship, that is, if it was actually there.
The Sunset’s Reflection Looks Like a Burst of Flames
If you looked over at your neighbor’s balcony and saw this, any reasonable person would immediately call the fire department or run out of the building. But the reality is just a reflection of the glowing sunset on glass, there’s no need for alarm!
A Building Seemingly Designed by M.C. Escher
The shadows on the windows of this building create an optical illusion that make it look like the side of the building is concave where it is actually flat. Any design fan would applaud the sense of mystery that this architecture creates!
A Giant Bug Scales a Skyscraper
This is either an unlikely sequel to Godzilla, or a perfectly timed photograph. Thankfully for the citizens of this metropolitan area, it’s the latter, but this is one way to imagine how 2020 could get any worse!
An Invisible Mirrored Building
At a first glance, this is just a photograph of a bright blue sky. But focusing on the outline of the building pictured, it becomes clear that this mirrored skyscraper is doing an incredible job camouflage itself from the city around it.
Ships Traveling Through the Sky
The clear water on this day and the sun shining through the water make it appear as it these ships have defied gravity to sail high above the water. In actuality, it’s just a beautiful day by the shore.
Is it a Puddle, or a Beach?
This photo was taken in Iceland and although it may appear to be an aerial photograph of a deserted beach below, it is actually a photo of a puddle. If you look at the foliage on the side of the photo it’s a bit easier to tell, but this is definitely a great illusion.
A Glowing Castle or a Light’s Reflection?
While staying at a hotel, this person caught a glimpse of a small glowing castle in their mug, leading to a lot of questions until they looked up and realized it was just the reflection of the chandelier above.
This Hotel’s Ominous Hallways
The carpet and lighting combination the hotel owner’s chose create a scary illusion that would make any guest afraid to walk through these halls by themself at night. Hopefully this hotel isn’t as terrifying as the hallways make it seem!
Cookies Create a Reflection of One Giant Cookie
While this person was baking cookies, they noticed one hidden cookie on the reflection of their mixing bowl. It looks like these chocolate cookies became one giant chocolate chip cookie.