Get away from it all with a visit to these hideaway destinations
A restorative break from our busy, bustling, and overloaded lives features high on wish lists, as the promise of travel moves into view once more.
From mountain refuges to nature reserves, island hideaways to tropical rainforests, there are tons of sublime secluded places to travel to that will allow travellers to escape the modern world and provide plenty of peace and quiet.
Mexcaltitán, Riviera Nayarit
A short boat ride from Riviera Nayarit´s coast brings travellers to the small island of Mexcaltitán, nicknamed the “Mexican Venice”, thanks to the many canals that crisscross through it. Mexcaltitán is a place shrouded in mystical and magical history that is well-worth a visit.
The northern area of Riviera Nayarit located alongside Mexico’s Pacific coast immerses visitors in the history of ancient Mexico. A day trip to Mexcaltitán will whisk visitors away to a world of mystery and unique cultural experiences. The island is deep-rooted in ancient Aztec history and many historians believe that this island is the birthplace of modern-day Mexico.
Visitors will find no cars. A canoe ride around the charming island takes about 30 minutes and provides numerous photo opportunities as well as many surprises including a close-up view of the island’s only soccer pitch—in the middle of a lake. Travellers will be enchanted by thousands of colourful Mexican houses and local restaurants offering fresh shrimp ceviche or tlaxtihuil (a traditional corn-based shrimp chowder) with the ingredients caught right outside their very doors.
Samana, Dominican Republic
Samaná is one of the Dominican Republic’s best kept secrets. Tucked away on the northeastern tip of the Dominican Republic, stretched out into the Atlantic, the Samaná Peninsula enjoys a splendid isolation from the rest of the country and many Dominicans say this is the most appealing part of their country. With traditional charm, a laid-back vibe and long, uncrowded, white-sand beaches, Samaná Peninsula is a hidden gem with most of its land still wild and undeveloped.
The Samaná province is full of incredible scenery: craggy limestone cliffs with panoramic views and rolling hills blanketed in coconut trees, tropical forests, colourful villages dotted along the rough roads, vibrant local markets scattered around the port town and a handful of sea view restaurants.
Those who travel here often come in search of one of the most secluded and stunning beach in the Dominican Republic: Playa Rincón: a dreamy three-mile long, undeveloped stretch on the peninsula's easternmost tip.
A popular activity in Samaná is the jungle trek on horseback to the Salto El Limón. In the middle of the Samaná Peninsula, the Salto El Limón (Lemon Waterfall) is a 170-foot majestic waterfall that cascades into a swimming hole. The 1.5-mile trek to the waterfall can be made on foot, or on horseback and a dive into the refreshing fresh turquoise water is highly recommended.
Travellers looking for a sense of seclusion from the outside world should look no further than the remote, uncharted lands of Guyana. Over 80% of Guyana’s territory is dense, pristine rainforest where human contact is seldom and total immersion in raw nature is an inevitability. Guyana’s eco-systems have evolved over millennia undisturbed by human development meaning that even the most impressive landmarks such as Kaieteur Falls, the world’s largest single-drop waterfall, is free of hordes of tourists.
Wildlife Worldwide’s tour ‘Guyana: A Pristine Wilderness’ takes travellers into a variety of ecosystems including tropical rainforest, savannahs, wetlands, mighty rivers, mangroves, and mountains. Visitors will have the chance to spot iconic animals such as black caiman, giant anteater, giant river otter, arapaima, harpy eagle, capybara, and green anaconda.
Refugi L’illa, Andorra
Nestled in between Spain and France in the heart of the Pyrenees, the tiny principality of Andorra is a hidden gem for those looking for a remote mountain break.
For the ultimate escape in the clouds, guarded ‘refuges’, or catered mountain huts, are located high in the mountains and are only accessible via foot (or helicopter), offering a comfortable bed for the night and a hearty meal after a day of hiking. The refuges are completely surrounded by the spectacular Pyrenees, where guests can take in the fresh mountain air and admire the stunning views feeling completely disconnected from everyday life. There are 27 mountain huts that are hidden along hiking routes in Andorra, four of which are catered and can be found along the Coronallacs walking trail. These rural, yet well-equipped refuges, are the ideal cosy spot for guests to relax ahead of another day of exploring.
Lihou Island, Guernsey
Lihou is a tidal island situated off the west coast of Guernsey, and only accessible via a quarter-mile causeway at low tide. Visitors have to check the tide timetable at the start of the causeway before venturing over to the island to ensure that the tide doesn’t come in and cut them off from the mainland – otherwise a 6 hour wait ensues. The island is home to the ruins of a Benedictine Priory, founded in the 12th century, and locals’ favourite secret spot for swimming – the Venus Pool – which traps water at high-tide providing a safe and warm place to enjoy the sea water. Along the shoreline, there is plenty of wildlife to explore, which has made this tiny place their Island home.
For the ultimate remote island break, there is a self-catered house on the island available for overnight stays, enabling residents to enjoy the peace and tranquillity that can be absent from modern life. There is no television or music system in the house but there are engaging views that are ever changing with the weather, light, and tides.
Ses Salines Natural Reserve, Ibiza
Ses Salines Natural Reserve, located in the south of Ibiza and spreading across to the north of Formentera, provides visitors with the opportunity to experience the island’s lesser-known side, including its characteristic salt dunes, hidden coves, and wetlands.
With its diverse and varied landscape, Ses Salines Natural Reserve is home to many animal and plant species, including the underwater meadows of Posidonia Oceanica, the unique seagrass growing around the coast, said to be a vital source of oxygen; and a reason behind the sparkling clear waters for which the Balearic Islands archipelago is known. Ses Salines also plays an important role in bird migration. Over 200 bird species pass through the park annually, including flamingos which rest in Ibiza for a few days every year between August and October. The area is also home to several sparsely inhabited villages, such as Sant Françesc, an authentic and traditional village built by salt workers in the 18th century, which allow visitors to fully immerse themselves in the cultural and historical heritage of the White Island and experience its peaceful and relaxing atmosphere.
Agroturismo Sa Talaia, Ibiza
Those looking for an isolated and relaxed setting on the beautiful island of Ibiza can seek quiet refuge at Agroturismo Sa Talaia. Nestled on a charming hilltop along country lanes in the east of the island, the 12-room private manor house is perfect for couples and friends seeking exclusion and complete relaxation on the White Isle. Rooms are set in separate buildings around the grounds, creating an exclusive oasis surrounded by pine trees and exquisite gardens. The manor’s alluring central pool surrounded by palm trees and a modern indoor restaurant serving tapas next to a chic bar completes the intimate atmosphere.