So yes, traveling is fun (visiting a museum in flip-flops, what a joy). But what is a little less pleasing is that mass tourism, which has multiplied, has consequences on our beautiful planet, which has asked for nothing. As a result, secret places become far too touristy and tourist sites close to the public to avoid being completely destroyed. It’s not too dreamy. Fortunately, we can still count a few places preserved from man and his total bullshit. Admire them well because at any moment, some jerk is going to open an Instagrammable concept restaurant over there and it will be finished pipo.
1. Heard and McDonald Islands
In the middle of the Indian Ocean, between South Africa and Australia, there is a very remote island and archipelago: the Heard and McDonald islands, rare island ecosystems that are still virgin. These islands are so far from land that it takes several days of sailing to get there. But don’t expect to spend your next quiet holiday there: these active volcanic islands are off-limits to humans, except for “compelling scientific reasons”. Moreover, the McDonald Islands have only been visited twice and Heard Island has not hosted long stays since 1992. That’s a long time!
2. North Sentinel Island in India
We already told you the story of this terrifying island in the top places impossible to visit. This Indian island, located near Myanmar, is only inhabited by a people, called The Sentinels, very withdrawn from society and who do not let anyone approach their territory. Several people tried to get in touch with them, but all attempts failed (the explorers having ended up killed by spears and arrows, it calms down). Since then, the Indian government has banned access to the island to prevent tourists with too big a melon from going there.
3. Queimade Grande Island in Brazil
Big atmosphere on this Brazilian island located 35km from São Paulo: if not completely uninhabited, the island is populated by jararaca-ilhoas, large snakes with deadly venom (five per square meter according to legend, not very nice guys). So you can imagine that the island is only reserved for well-prepared scientists. A local myth also tells that until 1920, a family lived on the island to support its lighthouse but that it completely disappeared, killed by snake bites. Since then, the animals have made a small comfortable T3 in the lighthouse.
4. Surtsey Island in Iceland
Formed in 1960, this completely virgin volcanic island, near Iceland, interests the scientific community by the fauna which develops there. For this reason, the island is closed to the public and only a few scientific representatives can go there to study the evolution of this surprising island.
5. Tepuys in Venezuela
These flat-topped mountains are widespread in Latin America, and especially in Venezuela where they dominate the tropical jungle. Very difficult to reach, only three peaks of the Gran Sabana mountains can be reached on foot. The rest you can forget. For this reason, the fauna and flora of these environments are very rich, because they are completely free from the useless gestures of humans (like the abandonment of waste in the middle of nature, I say that, I say nothing).
6. Some areas of Wollemi National Park in Australia
In 1994, a forest ranger discovered a previously unknown tree, the “Wollemi Pine”, in a canyon in the Blue Mountains region of New South Wales, a vast natural area located 200 km from Sydney. The forest, then preserved from man, had kept these trees warm for nearly 1,000 years. To prevent idiots from ruining everything with their big shoes, scientists have kept the exact location of these trees a secret. In 2020, during the great fires that ravaged Australia, the government set up a special operation dedicated to the preservation of this species very threatened by the flames.
7. The Mariana Trench
Another beautiful place where no tourist has ever set foot. At the same time, it would be a little risky: the Mariana Trench, located in the Pacific Ocean, is the deepest oceanic trench known to date with approximately 10,984 meters deep. If you have little chance of doing cushy diving there, it is mainly because the pressure there is around 1,100 times higher than on the surface. Only a few people have ever visited the bottom of the pit so far, hence its good preservation, so far. But guess what: we’re such big shits that a plastic bag was found at the bottom of the pit in 2018. There’s nothing to be proud of.
8. The Forest of a Giant Pit in Leye County, China
At the beginning of May 2022, an exploration team discovered an incredible fully preserved forest hidden in a 306 m high sinkhole in the Zhuang Autonomous Region of Guangxi, in southern China. In this primitive forest, explorers came face to face with centuries-old trees and shoulder-high shade plants. Finally, wouldn’t that mean that when nature is preserved from human activities, it lives very well?? To meditate.
9. The Gangkhar Puensum, between China and Bhutan
This eastern Himalayan mountain range, made up of three peaks, on the border between Bhutan and China, rises to more than 7,570 meters high, making it the highest virgin peak in the world. The height and climatic conditions of this summit also make it impossible to climb: no human has ever managed to reach the summit, all expeditions having failed. And it’s a little too late to take on this challenge: Bhutan banned the ascent of peaks over 6,000 meters in 1994 and mountaineering in 2003.
10. Tsingy de Bemaraha National Park in Madagascar
We end with a small wonder of nature that is very desirable, but that you will certainly never see. This Malagasy national park is a labyrinth made up of 157,000 hectares of sharp mineral rocks, sculpted by the limestone of the monsoon rains. If this area has been preserved, it is because it is very difficult to access. There are therefore virgin forests, lakes and mangroves that are home to lemurs in particular. And since we don’t want them to die, we’re going to stay warm at home watching them on Arte, ok??