World’s Most Isolated Retreats: Where to Go When You Need to Disappear

Have you ever felt the urge to just drop everything and escape? I know I have, and honestly — far more often than I would like to admit. I would start dreaming of secret islands and mountain peaks, just wishing to be left alone by everyone. Not forever, but just for a couple of days until my social battery is recharged. So, inspired by my daydreams, I decided to do some actual digging and find if places like that actually exist. Let me tell you — they do. So if you ever feel the urge to disappear, here are some of the world’s most isolated retreats where no one would be able to find you.

Svalbard, Norway

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If you’re someone who enjoys pure wilderness and you aren’t afraid of the cold, then Svalbard may be the perfect location for you. This is a frontier of rare wildlife and frozen landscapes. Days here are spent under the ethereal glow of the aurora borealis or basking in the midnight sun, depending on the season. Don’t worry, you don’t have to actually be in the unprotected wilderness. You can also check into eco-friendly lodges like the Basecamp Explorer or the modernist Funken Lodge in Longyearbyen. You won’t be bored either. Activities range from guided glacier hikes, polar bear safaris, to visits to abandoned Soviet-era towns.

Atacama Desert, Chile

High in the northern reaches of Chile, the Atacama Desert offers an otherworldly escape. Known as the driest place on Earth, its landscapes encompass salt flats, hot springs, and geysers. If you really want to recharge your social batteries and get some well-deserved rest, this place could be an amazing option. You will not only be able to do some stargazing sessions in one of the clearest skies in the world, but also indulge in some soothing spa treatments using local volcanic mud. The Atacama is also a cultural hub, with nearby towns like San Pedro de Atacama offering insights into indigenous Licanantay traditions and history.

The Galápagos Islands, Ecuador

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The remote Galápagos Islands are a living museum of evolutionary changes, with a plethora of endemic species. But besides that, it’s also a beautifully quiet place that offers plenty of opportunity for rest from the outside world. But don’t worry, you won’t feel lonely here either. Daily tours allow for close encounters with giant tortoises, marine iguanas, and endless bird species. And who needs human encounters when you can have this? If you’re feeling extra adventurous, you could als opt for a live-aboard cruise, which includes visits to less accessible islands and expert-led educational talks.

The Cook Islands, South Pacific

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For those dreaming of a tropical hideaway for one of the best isolated retreats, the Cook Islands are a paradise of soft sands and clear waters. One of the most popular resorts here is the Pacific Resort Aitutaki, where you can enjoy beachfront villas with private pools. Activities include lagoon cruises, cultural nights with traditional dance and music, and underwater adventures like snorkeling and scuba diving in coral gardens. To really rejuvenate your spirit, enjoy some local Polynesian massages and herbal treatments. And for extra fuel, try their local fresh seafood and tropical fruits.

Kanita is a wanderlust-fueled traveler with an inclination for unraveling the mysteries of history, the paranormal, and the bizarre world of medicine. As a true crime buff, Kanita's nights are often spent delving into the depths of chilling mysteries. Yet, it's not just the paranormal that captivates her—her background in medicine fuels a fascination with the weird and wonderful world of medical oddities, from twisted historical practices to the myths and legends that shroud the field. From exploring haunted locales to uncovering the strange and morbid tales of medical history, Kanita is your guide to the unconventional, the unexplained, and the downright eerie.

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