Up until as late as the year 1900, there remained a good part of our planet that was left to be discovered by brave souls who were happy to navigate the seas and unmapped lands of the world. That era of exploration and excitement lead not only to scientific discovery and names in history books, but also to exposing humanity to some of the world’s unseen wonders, an act that served to inspire those lucky enough to experience it.
In an age of Google Earth, rapid development, and diminishing nature, it may seem like there’s nothing new under the sun to be uncovered, but there are still a surprising number of places that, while not exactly undiscovered, have had very few lucky eyes laid upon them.
If you’ve got a taste for journeying where few before you have, check out these four places around the globe of unseen beauty:
1. Maui, Hawaii
Maui is the most visited island of the Hawaiian chain, far out in the Pacific ocean off of the west coast of the mainland United States. With that many tourists, there may be little left that is truly “unseen,” but that doesn’t mean that Maui isn’t a unique destination for rare beauty, offering up lush forests, bubbling volcanoes and endless beaches that have had relatively few eyes laid upon them. Check out this guide to Maui for more insight!
Once on Maui, you can also make your way out to the chain’s smaller islands, immersing yourself in local culture as you break away from common tourist attractions, giving you the opportunity to put your feet in sands that few human toes have had the pleasure of feeling beneath them!
Discovered by Viking sailors before even Christopher Columbus made his fateful journey to the Americas, Newfoundland has been a home to humanity for at least 1,000 years, but still has only about 500,000 people living on the island. Covered in high mountains, deep valleys, sheer cliffs, and beautiful forests, this Canadian province gives anyone the ability to discover the easternmost point of the North America, exploring its beauty and knowing all the while that very few feet, if any, have trodden in your path.
From boasting some of the oldest fossils known, to presenting every visitor with its unique modern culture, Newfoundland is a gem that most tourists never even consider, making it a truly peaceful and highly affordable place to visit!
Its name translates as “stone” in Arabic, a moniker that couldn’t possibly be more suitable for the prehistoric city of Petra in modern Jordan. Built upwards of 2,000 years ago before being abandoned for unknown reasons, this ancient city was only rediscovered in 1812, allowing humans to lay eyes its mind-blowing structures and exceptionally beautiful facades for the first time in two millenia.
Petra is open to tourism now, but it remains a hidden gem that the vast majority of us will never be so lucky to visit in our lifetimes. Its unnatural beauty and sheer magnitude have been known to overcome visitors, immersing them in a culture so rare that we know nothing of it, making Petra a true place of unseen beauty for the vast majority of modern people.
Ranking as the fourth smallest country in the world and one of the least visited by tourists, Tuvalu is a tiny island that sits in the midst of the vast Pacific Ocean, sporting beautiful tropical forests surrounded by white sand beaches, and playing host to only about 12,000 full-time residents.
If a quiet getaway to a region that remains largely untouched by humanity is up your alley, consider a journey into the heart of the world’s largest ocean in order to pay a visit to one of the its smallest nations!