Four Truly Off-the-Beaten Path Destinations

Four Truly Off-the-Beaten Path Destinations

the most over-used phrase in travel, “off-the-beaten
path” usually refers to a “local” enclave promising “authentic”
cuisine to those who think they’re “in the know”. In reality, these
“hidden gems” are often overrun with travellers who have read
exactly the same guidebook. Fear not, we’re lifting the lid on the
few remaining destinations that have retained their original
identity and provide an unspoilt and well-preserved insight into
little-explored cultures, histories and landscapes. Dispelling the
cliché, here are four the last remaining off-the-beaten path


Landlocked between China and Russia, Mongolia
is a patchwork of terrain where vast open spaces and cloudless
skies melt into one. With one of the lowest population densities in
the world, its emptiness is undoubtedly its biggest draw. Nomadic
children learn to ride before they can walk, so saddle up for a
horseback tour across the rolling green steppe, home to the last of
the world’s nomadic communities. Take advantage of the
free-spirited culture and pitch up anywhere. For those seeking
21st-century comforts, the Monge Tengri combines
traditional felt-walled gers with intricate lattice-wardrobes and
Mongolian wool throws. Once the homeland of the world’s most
formidable warrior, Genghis Khan, his legacy is prevalent
throughout the country and plays a central role to Mongolia’s rich
history. The museum at his birthplace of Dadal (located in the
northeast) is one of the more prolific options however his dynasty
is carried across everything from statues to milk cartons.


Perched high in the Himalayas is the last remaining Buddhist
kingdom. A country where wellbeing is viewed as a higher priority
than economic growth, tourists are required to spend a minimum
amount per day in order to prevent destructive low-cost tourism.
What travellers once saw as a hassle is now being seen as an
advantage; the whitewashed monasteries are exquisitely preserved,
trekking groups are small and lush valleys remain unspoilt. At the
heart of its alluring culture is peacefulness and serenity; traits
perfectly mirrored at each of the five Amankora lodges. Set among glacier landscapes
and dense forests, experience Bhutan’s culture and heritage through
a multi-destination Amankora journey. Fiercely independent, certain
sacred mountains are forbidden for hikes due to the fear they will
disturb the spirits that reside there and Western cuisine is
virtually non-existent, instead food rich in spices and coated in
flaming hot chilli graces the majority of menus. Bhutan probably
isn’t suited for spontaneous souls, but those who do venture into
this independent land are immediately met with an aurora of magic
and a country little touched by modernity.

Christmas Island

Finding unspoilt blonde-sand beaches and twinkling crystalline
waters is often a crusade better suited to Roberson Crusoe, but
this minute Australian island boasts tourist numbers that rarely
reach five figures – unless you count the 50 million red crabs that
also call it home. Swim in the warm, translucent waters of the
grotto (a sandy-bottomed cave that flows into the ocean) or dive
deeper and share the waters with turtles, whale sharks, spinner
dolphins and manta rays – all island residents. Accommodation on
this eco-paradise isle isn’t the most luxurious, but the rooms at
Captain’s Last Resort all have
balconies ideally positioned for catching the Indian Ocean sunsets.
Besides, in between discovering deserted coves, acting out
shipwrecked fantasies at Dolly’s Beach (voted the seventh best in
Australia) and hiking Hugh Dale’s waterfall, you won’t be spending
much time indoors.

St Helena

It wasn’t long ago that access to St Helena was restricted to a
mail ship that passed by the lonely shores once every three weeks;
it took a five days and cost a hefty package. But the island’s
first commercial flight recently launched, opening up this
previously isolated land mass 1200 miles off the coast of Africa in
the mid-Atlantic – commonly referred to as the last place of exile
for Napoleon, the islet offers an age-old history tied to a fiery
Frenchmen. Climb Jacob’s Ladder, a collection of 699 steep steps in
the capital Jamestown to gaze across the pocket-sized Georgian
mansions nestled in the dramatic ravine. In order to catch a
glimpse of the exotic marine life, charter a boat for a tour around
the island where you’re likely to be joined by pods of dolphins.
Leave the 21st century far behind and forget about social media
location updates, venture out on one of 20 walking trails (all
varying in difficulty) and send a postcard instead. At the end of
each walk there’s a quaint postbox, ink stamp and visitors book to

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