Taking a holiday in a remote, off the beaten track location can be a life-changing experience. Being able to completely get away from it all for a week or two of total disconnected solitude can change a person’s perspective and open the doors to lots of different possibilities. For some people, an off the beaten track holiday is the only option.
As someone who appreciates the healthy voyager mindset, maybe this sort of holiday appeals to you. If so, do not forget that remaining safe relies heavily on planning. By definition, those remote holiday locations you are seeking are not equipped with even the basic necessities of life. Go off the beaten track and you will be fending for yourself. Planning is paramount to your safety.
Get to Know the Lay of the Land
The first step in planning an off the beaten track holiday is to get to know the lay of the land. Once you have a general idea of where you would like to go, get your hands on as much information as you can. Look at maps, read reviews, study news articles, etc. The goal is to consume as much information about the area as you can.
Getting to know the lay of the land includes knowing and understanding:
- geography and topography
- the area’s proximity to civilization
- typical weather patterns
- how the area can be accessed in case of emergency
- local capabilities for mobile phone and GPS service.
Knowing the lay of the land puts you in a good position to understand what you might be up against should an emergency arise. You will then know how to prepare in terms of first aid supplies, communication devices, contingency plans, and the like.
Plan Your Movements
You might be the type of person who prefers to go to that holiday destination, set up your camp, and then not move again until it’s time to go home. But if you plan to move around the area, plan those movements. Clearly indicate in what direction you will be moving every day. Plan for how much distance you intend to cover and the amount of time you think it will take you.
Planning your daily movements makes it easier for others to identify when there might be trouble. For example, if you don’t show up at your next stopping point on schedule, that’s a sign that you might need help. And just for the record, you have to give copies of your plan to other people if you want them to know where you are going and what you’re doing.
Assemble a First Aid Kit
It is amazing how many people go out into the wilderness without taking at least a few basic first aid supplies. Simply put, doing so is just not smart. Accidents happen even in urban and suburban environments; to expect that they will not happen in the wilderness is to defy logic. The problem with having an accident off the beaten track is that there are no doctors or hospitals to run to.
The best travel first aid kits on the market contain a variety of bandages, dressings, plasters, and splints. They also contain things like emergency blankets and scissors. You might also want to think of adding a few extra items given that you will be enjoying your holiday in the middle of nowhere:
- Insect repellent
- Antibiotic ointment
- Burn cream
- Cleansing wipes
- Eye wash
- Pain reliever
- Antidiarrheal medication.
A good first aid kit doesn’t have to be big, bulky, and excessively heavy. In other words, you do not have to take the entire hospital with you. Take the basics along with a good plan of action and you should be fine.
Make Copies of Essential Documents
Even holidays in the great outdoors should not be embarked upon without the right documents on hand. Essential documents include a driving licence, health insurance documents (where applicable), and a passport if you plan to travel overseas. Make copies of each of your documents as well. The copies are there just in case you need them.
Arrange for Travel Insurance
Finally, complete your holiday plan by arranging for travel insurance. A good travel insurance policy protects you against things like missed flights, delayed or cancelled flights, theft, property loss, and injury/illness. In regard to this last item, it’s wise to have a policy that pays for immediate medical care and transport home.
A holiday off the beaten track is the stuff dreams are made of. If that’s your cup of tea, get out there and have a good time. Just make sure that you adequately plan. Then be sure to share that plan with friends or family.