Feeling restless? Here at i-escape we’ve got a serious case of itchy feet and a visit to one of these untamed outposts may be the only cure.
Geneticists mapping modern human migration recently identified a gene, in 20 percent of all humans, which actually makes us more curious and prone to wanderlust. This niggling urge to explore has pushed people to discover new continents, to trek to the farthest poles and even to launch shuttles into space. Suddenly it all makes sense. No wonder we can’t stop globetrotting.
Are you one of the nomadic few? Do you yearn for adventure in far-flung destinations? If so, we have the perfect wilderness escapes to placate those restless genes.
Eolo in Patagonia combines luxurious creature comforts with a stunning “back to nature” location. This exclusive hideaway has unparalleled bedroom views of blue skies and rugged mountain vistas.
Get your hiking boots on and trek to the Perito Moreno glacier, grab your binoculars to watch the flamingos at sunset, or perhaps just chill out on the veranda with a G&T and take in the spectacular scenery.
Equally remote, but just as dramatic is this South African ecolodge in Kruger National Park.
With 12 open-air, warehouse-style rooms perched high above the hillside, The Outpost is in a class of its own. Each one showcases an amazing panorama of the Luvuvhu Valley’s pristine wilderness.
Watch the sunrise over the horizon while you soak in your freestanding bathtub, or take a game drive at dusk through the bush to see elephants and buffalo roaming the park.
The land belongs to the indigenous Makuleke tribe and the ecolodge is a unique, sustainable development that provides support for the local community through staffing and sales. You can sample some of the delicious local food, like ostrich, in the restaurant; the savoury crepes, in particular, are not to be missed.
If it’s pure simplicity you crave, head to neighbouring Namibia where arid desert meets fertile savannah in one of our favourite hideaways.
KuanguKuangu is a secluded couple’s cabin, made from wood and stone, set against the magnificent backdrop of the Naukluft Mountains. The adventurous can fly over the Namib Desert in a hot air balloon or head off to Sossuvlei to see the sand dunes at sunset.
Powered by solar energy, the cabin is eco in every sense. Leave all your mod-cons behind, as there’s no WiFi or mobile phone reception. Instead you get plenty of tranquillity and a never-to-be-forgotten escape from the world.
But for those who really crave something other-worldly we refer you back to those smart geneticists. Apparently a number of us also carry Neanderthal DNA in our genetic make-up. Pardon!? True. Perhaps that explains the hugely popular trend for cave hotels cropping up across Europe.
These distinctive rock formations dominate the region of Cappadocia and were created by volcanic eruptions millions of years ago. Clever architects have carved into the soft rock to create a unique set of subterranean hotels. The Hezen Cave Hotel in Ortahisar is one such marvel.
Turkish designer Halide Didem’s inspired use of red and green furnishings adds a dash of colour against the white stone walls and delivers a contemporary twist to this traditional hotel. The outdoor spaces are equally impressive with sun-drenched terraces providing the perfect place for breakfast. Choose from a Turkish buffet of white cheese, cucumber, olives, freshly baked bread or pastries, fruit and cereal. Nearby, explore the ancient underground cities of Derinkuyu and Kaymakli; just be careful not to get lost in the labyrinth of narrow passageways.
Check out more of our top picks for outdoor-themed getaways.