Normally, booking a holiday – even for us adventure types – simply means going online and buying a flight. But if you want to visit this island paradise, it’s going to be a lot more complicated than that!
We are talking about Tristan da Cunha, a part of the British overseas territory Saint Helena and a true sub-tropical heaven. The island sits in between South Africa and South America, 1,491 miles (2,400 kilometres) from the former and 2,088 miles (3,360 km) from the latter. It’s closest neighbour with actual residents is Saint Helena, which is located a whole 1,243 miles away.
Despite (or perhaps because of) its remoteness, this tiny island (it’s only 7 miles (11 km) long!) is brimming with rocky shores, pristine waters and truly incredible flora and fauna. There is only one town on the island: Edinburgh of the Seven Seas. It is known by locals – of which there are less than 300 by the way – simply as ‘The Settlement.’
Wait a second, there is still an island out there that humans haven’t ruined?! What’s the catch?
Well, the issue here is that this place is practically impossible to get to.
To get to Tristan from, say, London, you first need to fly to Cape Town, South Africa, which takes 11 and a half hours. From there, it will take you five to six days by boat to travel the remaining 1,746 miles (2,810 km). However, spaces on these boats (usually fishing vessels) are limited to 12, so you’ll need to book months in advance.
The only other possible way to get to Tristan is by taking a month-long cruise of the general region. These vessels only have around 40 seats.
And even once you’ve secured a spot on one of these boats, you run the risk of being bumped off by priority passengers (medical personnel, government officials and Tristan residents).
Basically, if you want to check out the world’s remotest island, your planning needs to be immaculate! But remember – even if you’ve timed your travels absolutely perfectly, and are not delayed in any way, you will still be travelling for at least five days straight.
What awaits you on the other side, however, is a virtually untouched, natural wonderland. As the old saying goes: good things come to those who wait.