Its becoming increasingly difficult to get back out to nature, to turn off the screens and step out of the AC. To be able to say that theres literally no one around for miles.I live for that, for finding myself alone on a beach, for traveling to the furthest corners of the planet to find places so remote that only a handful of people live there.
Deception Island, Antarctica
The now quite thoroughly abandoned site of Antarctic bases for Russian and British expeditions, Deception Island lies inside a volcano, making it a prime spot to study geothermal activity (for the handful of Argentinian and Spanish researchers who live there). The island sees the occasional tourist on the lookout for Chinstrap penguins, and those looking for the ability to dig themselves a volcanic bath in the sand virtually anywhere they feel like it.
North Sentinel Island
In the Bay of Bengal, North Sentinel Island is the real-life version of those remote islands from the movies. Yknow, the ones where the adventurers come ashore and are instantly met by spear-toting warrior-tribesmen? The dozen or so reported cases of contact with the Sentinelese (most recently in 2004, when two fishermen were killed having washed up there) suggest that its exactly that. So, if youre trying to leave a life of laptop luxury behind, its probably the best place you can go provided you can convince the Sentinelese to take you in.
Alert, Nunavut, Canada
Though it has a permanent population of 0, Alert is the northernmost inhabited place on the planet. Just 500 miles away from the North Pole, Alerts inhabitants all exist in a small pocket of the region, and consist of scientists monitoring the atmosphere and weather, and military personnel operating the military signals intelligence radio receiving facility there.
Kerguelen Islands, South Indian Ocean
Also known as the Desolation Islands, the Kerguelen Islands rank as one of the most isolated places in the world. The total population of the 2,786 square miles of island fluctuates between 70-110 people, so its really easy not to bump into another person if you dont want to.
Gangkhar Puensum Mountain, Bhutan
A remote mountain (or triplet of mountains, actually) on the border between Bhutan and Tibet, Gangkhar Puensum is the highest point in Bhutan, and possibly the tallest mountain never summitted on the planet. Failed expedition after failed expedition went after the peak, and ultimately mountaineering in the region became completely forbidden. Few bother to make the trip to the mountain any more, making it a great place to ditch people all together.
Populated by the descendants of the famous mutineers of the Bounty, the Pitcairn Islands are largely uninhabitable, and therefore the island chain has a total population of about 56 on the main island of Pitcairn. The southernmost tip of French Polynesia, the Pitcairn islands are only accessible by boat, so they are rarely visited by outsiders (excluding the handful of tourists taking day-trips from one of the 10 cruise ships which pass through the region each year).
Tristan da Cunha, South Atlantic Ocean
The "most remote archipelago in the world," Tristan de Cunha (population: 264) is a group of volcanic islands near South Africa. It takes a carefully planned 6 days by boat to reach the islands, and fewer ships are making the trek these days, so with getting there becoming increasingly difficult you can bet its going to remain practically untouched forever.
Easter Island, Chile
Also known as Rapa Nui, this island of giant-stone-head-acclaim is notably more populous than most equally remote places (for example, it ranks comparably to Tristan da Cunha, and the closest inhabited island is Pitcairn). Located over 2,000 miles off the coast of Chile, the island does see many times its population in visitors each year, but thats about the extent of what actually makes it out there from the mainland.
Socotra Island, Yemen
Situated among three other islands in the Indian Ocean, Socotra is the largest in the chain, and possibly the most unusual. With a third of the native flora unique to the island and found nowhere else, its landscape has earned it the title as one of the most alien looking place[s] on Earth.
Arctic Pole of Inaccessibility
Furthest from any landmass on the planet, the Arctic (North) Pole of Inaccessibility is not on land, but rather the northernmost mass of Arctic ice. As a result, the shifting of the ice shelf means that no permanent structures can be erected there. And they dont call it the pole of inaccessibility for nothing, theres still debate over whether or not anyone has actually ever reached it on foot by crossing the ice.
Amazon Rainforest, Brazil
2,123,562 square miles of dense jungle comprise the Amazon Rainforest Basin, which sprawl across parts of 9 separate nations, and whose estimated 390 billion trees provide plenty of coverage to get lost in. Fun fact: Over half of the nutrients the soil of the Amazon needs to maintain its lush growth arrives each year as 50 tons of dust, blown over the Atlantic from the Sahara.
The most remote community in the contiguous United States, the 208 residents of Supai still send and receive their snail mail by mule. Seriously.
One of the most remote towns in the already-remote Greenland, Ittoqqortoormiit has a population of 452. Translating to Big House Dwellers in Eastern Greenlandic, the economy of Ittoqqortoormiit is still based on a long-standing tradition of whale and polar bear hunting.
Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station
Located at the southernmost point of the world, the Amundsen-Scott research station is stocked with between 50 and 200 researchers at any given time. And thats it. Seated on shifting ice at the Earths axis, the research base experiences one 6 month long day, where the temperatures can raise to -15 degrees, and one 6 month long night where the temperatures can drop to -100 degrees.
Possibly the most remote of Great Britains inhabited islands, Foula (or Bird Island as it translates from old Norse) seems to have been inhabited for over 5000 years, which is impressive given its current population is about 38 people. Its isolation meant that Foula was one of the last places in the world where the Norn language (a derivative of Old Norse) was actually spoken, well into the 19th century.
McMurdo Station, Antarctica
Though its claim to fame is being the largest community in all of Antarctica, thats not saying much. The cornerstone of the United States Antarctic Research Program, McMurdo serves as the last stop before the final push to the South Pole, and is home to 113 scientists and some support staff.
With its proximity to the North Pole, Oymyakon maintains a small population due to its status as one of the coldest inhabited places in the world. The ground is permanently frozen, which is particularly unusual considering it can get as warm as 81 degrees in the summer.
Formerly known as Spitzbergen, Svalbard stands as the halfway point between Norway and the North Pole. There are 5 types of terrestrial mammals that inhabit it: Svalbard reindeer, polar bears, the arctic fox, the accidentally introduced southern vole, and humans. With a majority of its population a multi-racial mix of researchers, coal miners, and those working in the tourism sector, Svalbard is considered one of the safest places on Earth, with next to no reported crime annually.
St. Kilda, Scotland
Though St. Kilda may have had a standing population of up to 180 residents for over 2000 years, it has had no permanent residents since 1930. To get an idea of how historically isolated St. Kilda has been, anecdotes say that islanders would communicate with the rest of the world one of two ways: By climbing to the highest point on the island and lighting a bonfire, or by placing messages into tiny carved boats and sending them out to sea.
Bouvet Island, Norway
The singular most remote island in the world, the Norweigan Bouvet Island is completely uninhabited. The first successful mission to summit the highest point on the island took place just recently in 2012, and the team of four left behind a time capsule to be retrieved in 2062.
South Keeling Islands, Australia
Also known as the Cocos islands, only 2 of the 24 of the South Keeling islets are inhabited, with a combined population of 600 people. Located between Australia and Sri Lanka, the islands have served a historically tactical function given their proximity to the Indian Ocean and South China shipping routes, and the presence of a major communication station on Direction Island vied for during both World Wars.
Macquarie Island, Australia
Situated between New Zealand and Australia, Macquarie Island is home to two key things: between 20-40 people, and the entire Royal Penguin population during nesting season. All of the Royal Penguins. On Earth. In one place.
Rapa Iti, French Polynesia
The little counterpart of Rapa Nui (Easter Island), Rapa Iti is home to 497 people and several migratory bird species, making the island an IBA (Important Bird Area). Known colloquially as Rapa, the name refers to territory which includes a small handful of largely uninhabited islands, and 4 large volcanic rocks.
The sprawling farmland of Motuo county averages one person per square mile, and has a pleasant climate giving life to over 3,000 distinct species of plants. The last county in all of China without road access, Metuo only gained a highway in 2010, which means that its only a matter of time before buildings start cropping up aggressively in the region.
Cape York Peninsula, Australia
A remote peninsula marking the very northern tip of Queensland, Cape York Peninsula remains the home of many aboriginal communities, despite the infertility of the soil in the region. The secret of Cape York might be out (as the area is seeing an influx of nature and camping-minded tourists) but preservation of the peninsula has been a priority since the 90s, and development there is strictly controlled.
Koryak Okrug, Russia
The massive 116,400 square miles that make up Koryak Okrug houses the smallest population of all of the Federal subjects of Russia. For whatever reason, people seem to be moving away from Koryak Okrug at a relatively steady rate, meaning it may become one of the largest abandoned areas in the next few decades.
Peter I Island, Antarctica
This volcanic island 280 miles from Antarctica is completely uninhabited, largely due to pack ice and glacial cover making it all-but-inaccessible. The majority of life that exists on Peter I consists almost exclusively of seals and seabirds.This volcanic island 280 miles from Antarctica is completely uninhabited, largely due to pack ice and glacial cover making it all-but-inaccessible. The majority of life that exists on Peter I consists almost exclusively of seals and seabirds.
Representing a huge chunk of the fabled Tibetan Plateau, Changtang is home to almost exclusively nomadic peoples, who roam with livestock as the climate is too harsh to set up permanent farms. It is also home to the worlds highest inhabited village, Karzok, on the bank of the Tsomoriri lake.
After the Russian word for forest, the Siberian Taiga is an ecoregion in the largest biome in the world. Spanning over 1,505,700 square miles, the Siberian Taiga is remarkably biodiverse, with over 2,300 species of plants alone despite harsh growth conditions.