All articles

Remote locations in Canada and the rest of the world

Are you craving a little holiday inspiration right about now? Maybe a getaway to a faraway remote island or a gorgeous secluded town right here in Canada? While we know that travel is difficult at the moment, we still want to inspire your future travel plans so you can get back out there when the world opens up again. Have any questions about travel? You can always keep up to date with the latest travel news and guidance during these times with our coronavirus travel advice article.

We’ve done our research and sourced some of the most beautiful secluded places in Canada and abroad just for you. From the most remote islands and towns in Canada to secluded desert landscapes, get ready to discover some of the world’s most remote destinations in our guide below.

Most remote islands in Canada

clouds, rocks, and sea in Baffin Island, a large and remote island in Canada
Remote destinations: Baffin Island, Nunavut

Haida Gwaii, BC

There’s perhaps no place in Canada more beautiful and more remote than the sacred archipelago of Haida Gwaii just off the west coast of British Columbia. This stunning temperate rainforest region is home to the Haida First Nations, and a trip to their lands is an experience you won’t forget. Book a whale watching tour, check out the beautiful beaches and coastline in Naikoon Provincial Park, and learn about the fascinating heritage of the Haida First Nations at the Haida Heritage Centre. Visitors can only access this remote Canadian destination by boat or seaplane from the mainland.

Hecla Island, Manitoba

If you’re looking for a remote destination for a family vacation in Canada this summer, head to the secluded Hecla Island located in Lake Winnipeg. Just an hour and a half drive from the capital, Manitoba’s Hecla Island is an ideal island getaway with plenty of outdoor activities and stunning scenery along the way. Pay a visit to the remote and historic village of Hecla, check out the lighthouse overlooking the Gull Harbour, and spend a few days in a cabin in the woods for a refreshing city getaway. Be sure to get your daypack ready, as tons of beautiful hiking opportunities and wildlife spotting await.

Need ideas for a little family vacation this summer? Here are some of the top family getaway destinations in Canada.

Fogo Island, Newfoundland

One of our writers Lora Pope, who runs the Explore with Lora travel blog, is a native Newfoundlander and loves discovering new tourist attractions in her home province. “Newfoundland is a remote place to visit on its own, but a trip to Fogo Island brings it to a whole new level. An island within an island, to get here most visitors will have to take several plane connections, a long bus ride, and a one hour boat ride.”

Lora recommends planning a trip to this Canadian remote island, which has a beautiful community and so many outdoor experiences just waiting for you. “In 2013, the five-star luxury Fogo Island Inn was built, along with an artist residency program that attracts people from all over the world. While locals have been surviving here for years on traditional jobs, the increase in tourism has breathed new life into the economy. The hotel was built with sustainability in mind, with all of the hotels operating surpluses reinvested into the local communities.”

“Like all of Newfoundland, you’ll be warmly welcomed here by the some 2,500 residents that make up the 11 communities. It’s the perfect place to experience traditional Newfoundland culture, and immerse yourself In the incredible nature here. There are hundreds of kilometres of hiking trails, including Brimstone Head. Whales are often spotted from the harbour, in the spring you can see giant icebergs make their way down from Greenland, and in the summer you can see puffins nesting in the island’s cliffs.”

Most remote islands in the world

horse in the remote island of Barra, off the coast of Scotland
Remote destinations: Barra, Scotland

Baffin Island, Nunavut

Some of the most remote island destinations in the world can be found just up north, with one of them being beautiful Baffin Island. Located in our third northern territory of Nunavut, Baffin Island is a once in a lifetime adventure trip for the books. This is the spot in Canada for unique wildlife sightings such as the Arctic hare, fox, and wolf, and of course, caribou and polar bears. Fun fact: Baffin is actually the biggest island in all of Canada!

Barra, Scotland

There are lots of rugged islands off the coast of the UK, one of them being beautiful Barra in Scotland’s Outer Hebrides region. There are accommodation opportunities scattered along the coast and lots to do for a long weekend getaway. Visit the historic Kisimul Castle and hike along the shores of Cliad Bay for some of the most impressive views. Travellers can access the island via plane or ferry, and then take the local public bus around the island. It’s just less than a three-hour flight to Barra from Glasgow.

Most remote deserts in Canada

sign for the entrance to Carcross Desert in Yukon, a remote place in Canada
Remote destinations in Canada: Carcross Desert in Yukon

Carcross Desert, Yukon Territory

It’s no doubt that Canada’s northern territories are some of the most remote regions of the world, but they are filled with endless beauty and endless adventure opportunities. Did you know that Yukon has its very own sand dunes? Sometimes referred to as the world’s smallest desert, the dunes at Carcross, Yukon, are the remains from a glacial lake from the last ice age. These ancestral lands and small sand dunes are beautiful to explore and make a great stop on your Yukon itinerary.

Athabasca Sand Dunes, Saskatchewan

Sand dunes? In Saskatchewan? Yes, that’s a thing. Head north to this remote region in the Land of the Living Skies and be inspired at the Athabasca sand dunes. These dunes are much larger than the ones in Yukon, stretching for 100 kilometres just south of nearby Lake Athabasca. Saskatchewan’s remote desert region is definitely a great addition to your travel bucket list, as these sand dunes are the northernmost active sand dunes in the world. This Canadian natural wonder is definitely remote; travellers can only access the dunes via boat or floatplane.

Most remote countries

one lone yurt in the remote desert land of Mongolia
Remote destinations: Mongolia

Mongolia

Adventure trips go to the next level in a place like Mongolia. Set in the Gobi Desert between the remote regions of northern China and Russia to the north, Mongolia is where you go to get away from it all. Other than the capital city of Ulaanbaatar, the only accommodation you’ll have on a trip here is a stay in a yurt, where you can really escape and relax under the comfort of countless stars covering the clear night sky. These desolate lands get cold at night, so we recommend planning a trip here during the summer months. Mongolia is the most isolated corner of the world, with a population density of fewer than two people per square kilometre. When you get out to the countryside you’ll soon discover that the camels outnumber the people about 20-1.

Kyrgyzstan

One of the most remote places on Earth is Central Asia, and the former Soviet country of Kyrgyzstan is the perfect place to start exploring this fascinating part of the world. The country has invested a lot in tourism over the past few years, and with visa-free entry for Canadians, the remote destination of Kyrgyzstan is waiting to be discovered once it’s safe to travel again. Be a responsible tourist by booking a community-based tourism getaway to the secluded alpine lake Song-Kul, where you can stay in a yurt by a gorgeous turquoise lake.

Most remote cities and towns

mountain and lake in New Zealand's remote south island
Remote destinations: Glenorchy, New Zealand

Port Rexton, Newfoundland

If you want to experience more of the best of what our 10th province has to offer, head to the remote town of Port Rexton in Newfoundland. There are so many remote destinations to explore throughout Newfoundland, but Port Rexton is bound to capture your travelling heart. Catch the local vibes at Port Rexton Brewing, the town’s only brewery, join a kitchen party, or stay in one of the inviting jellybean-coloured houses along the breezy and beautiful shores of Newfoundland. For a hiking experience that will leave you inspired for years to come, head out to the Fox Island Trail (and make sure to bring your camera).

Glenorchy, New Zealand

Surrounded by ocean and a three-hour plane ride away from its only neighbouring country, you can’t really get more remote than New Zealand. This beautiful country in the southern hemisphere is as far away from Canada as you can get, with lots of gems to be discovered along the stunning coastline. Secluded in the southern region of New Zealand’s south island is the remote town of Glenorchy, a perfect little spot for your remote holiday. Just a short drive from the adventure capital of Queenstown, Glenorchy has plenty to do when it comes to relaxation and outdoor fun. Explore the nearby hiking trails, go kayaking in Lake Wakatipu, or even go zip-lining! This town has been featured in your favourite movies like Narnia and Lord of the Rings, so the scenery will definitely impress.

Start planning your adventure trip

Even if we’re just at the planning stages of travel, start dreaming about your next getaway and find your perfect accommodation in these remote destinations around the world.

Discover where you can go

Making plans to get back out there? Find out which borders are open with our interactive global map. You can also sign up to receive email updates when your top destinations reopen.

Want to read more?

We’ve got all the travel info and inspiration you need right here. Check out some of our latest articles: