We all know what it’s like – eager to get away from it all, you book a holiday and jet off to sunnier, quieter climes. But when you arrive, those shores may be very sunny but they’re anything but quiet, with flocks of other tourists having had exactly the same idea. So, is there nowhere you can go to escape the crowds? The good news is there are plenty of secluded spots left – you just need to know where to look.
I’ve put together a list of some of the top places for crowd-free relaxation.
If it’s seclusion you’re after, I don’t think you’ll find anywhere better than the Maldives, which seems almost designed for quiet holidays. It’s not, of course – in fact, it’s one of those all-too-rare unspoilt destinations that has a real natural beauty.
So, what’s it all about? Well, the Maldives is an archipelago made up of thousands of little islands, many of which are uninhabited. This means you have the chance to escape to deserted isles for day trips during your stay, which is bound to appeal to any crowd-weary travellers!
What really makes it stand out in my mind, though, is the fact that there is a legal limit of one resort per island. So, even when staying in an ultra-luxurious, well-established resort (which the Maldives is renowned for), you needn’t worry about being greeted by hordes of other holidaymakers when you hit the beach.
Like the Maldives, Mauritius is nestled in the Indian Ocean and also offers a lot for the traveller keen to relax. What’s great about this destination is that it manages to achieve an excellent balance between having a sound tourist infrastructure, lots of activities and tranquility.
Its diverse landscape helps keep it low on crowds, I think; for instance, the fact that its home to sights like the Morne mountain critical error start menu and cortana aren’t working mean that the interior is as interesting as the coast, so people are more spread out than they might be in places where the shore is the sole attraction.
What’s more, there are plenty of beaches to choose from, with different parts of the island having their own appeal. The beaches in the west and south-west, for example, are great for enjoying a little peace and quiet and spotting dolphins.
The beauty of going to the Seychelles is that it really does mean you’ll experience a slice of tropical paradise. The last of my destinations in the Indian Ocean, this archipelago is made up of 115 islands known for being home to some of the world’s most stunning – not to mention pristine – beaches.
Like the Maldives, the Seychelles gives you brilliant opportunities for island hopping and, as with the Maldives, you can also visit uninhabited paradises; Bird Island and Cerf are among your options.
However, the inhabited islands are pretty hard to beat too. Head to the quiet little isle of Praslin, for example, and you can experience the lush Vallee de Mai – a UNESCO World Heritage Site – and some of the most picturesque beaches on the planet, like Anse Georgette. Plus, as the population here only hits the 7,000 mark, it’s not exactly crowded.
For my last destination, we’ll leave the Indian Ocean behind and head to the Caribbean – more specifically, Antigua. Now, this island’s probably most famous for the fact it literally has one beach for every day of the year, and this is actually part of what makes it so good for secluded holidays.
You see, since there are so many beaches, you don’t have to look too far to find one that’s not crowded. Avoid the usual tourist traps and head somewhere like Half Moon Bay, which is wonderfully peaceful. Being a little windy, it’s absolutely ideal for sports like windsurfing, but if you’re planning to stay on the sand you can head to the northern end where it’s more sheltered.