While we’re all about convenience in our daily routine, when it comes to vacation, we’re acutely aware that sometimes the most memorable experiences take us off the beaten path. Such is the case with these far-flung luxury lodges. Located in some of the most remote places on the planet, the properties ahead aren’t exactly what you’d call easily accessible, but they’re definitely worth the effort. For many travelers, the journey is part of the appeal! An irresistible combination of unbridled natural beauty, supreme privacy, and posh comforts certainly doesn’t hurt either.
The best things in life don’t come easy—and these bucket list retreats prove that’s true without a shadow of a doubt.
Emirates One&Only Wolgan Valley | Australia
Tucked away in a 7,000-acre conservation reserve—surrounded by sandstone cliffs, verdant vales, and fragrant eucalypt forests—Emirates One&Only Wolgan Valley delivers a distinctive Australian bush experience. The ambience is refined yet down-to-earth. There are 40 free-standing villas, each with its own fireplace, heated pool, and spacious veranda, plus gratis binoculars and mountain bikes. Guests can opt for a range of outdoor activities, from horseback riding and birdwatching to guided 4WD vehicle tours and stargazing. Among the pampering perks is a holistic spa with rejuvenating rituals and majestic vistas.
Helena Bay Lodge | New Zealand
If the idea of getting away from it all intrigues you, consider Helena Bay Lodge. Set on the peaceful shores of New Zealand’s North Island, it’s reachable by high-speed helicopter (or you could drive approximately three hours from Auckland). And when we say private, we mean it. A maximum of five couples can stay at a time. Meaning the entire 800-acre expanse is pretty much your personal playground. Forage for fresh ingredients in the garden, fish from a pontoon, meet the alpacas, indulge in massage therapy, or savor an estate-to-plate picnic.
Minam River Lodge | Oregon
Forget the road less traveled, they’re aren’t even paved paths leading to Minam River Lodge. So, how do you venture to this ultra-secluded respite? Horseback, charter plane, or hike (it’s a pleasant 8.5-mile trek through Oregon’s gorgeous Eagle Cap Wilderness). Once there, cast your line in the trout-filled lakes and stroll the many scenic trails. As far as accommodations, expect wall tents, log cabins, rustic rooms, and a sumptuous master suite. What you won’t find? Wi-Fi and cell service. Further evidence that this is truly a place to unplug.
Amankora | Bhutan
Seeking an escape from the hustle and bustle? It doesn’t get much more remote or relaxing than Amankora. With five Himalayan havens spread across Bhutan, it immerses guests in the untouched beauty and cultural heritage of the last surviving Buddhist Kingdom. At Paro, cozy up in front of a bukhari, a wood-burning stove. Peep endangered black-neck cranes at Gangtey, set in the little-visited Phobjikha Valley. Explore 29 temples and monasteries at Bumthang. Unwind with a soothing soak in a terrazzo-clad bath at Thimphu. Stay in a traditional rammed-earth farmhouse, overlooking rice paddies, at Punakha.
Four Seasons Safari Lodge Serengeti | Tanzania
Four Seasons Safari Lodge Serengeti is hidden deep in the heart of the savannah, where gazelles, lions, rhinoceros, and zebras roam free. Start the morning with a cup of coffee on your balcony. You might even spot elephants gathering at the nearby watering hole. Then it’s off to the bush for an exhilarating game drive excursion. See stunning wildlife up close in a Jeep or take in the aerial views from a hot air balloon. After a day of exotic adventures, return to the property for a refreshing dip in the picturesque infinity pool.