In this post, I’m going to talk about digital detox holidays. If you use the internet every day, you take part in over 2,000 digital interactions daily, on average. We are so used to this, that it seems very normal and we don’t realise that it can be a source of stress.
For this reason, digital detox holidays – holidays where you disconnect your phone – are becoming increasingly popular.
It is true that you could make the choice of spending less time on your phone and living more in the moment. However, if the temptation to look at your phone is too big, there are some places where there is no access to your phone, TV or laptop and no internet, and these are the perfect places to really disconnect from the stress of everyday life and reconnect with yourself.
Want to organise a digital detox holiday but don’t know where to go? Below are 4 destinations ideas to suit all tastes: an island, a mountain, a desert and a forest.
1. San Blas Islands – Panama
The San Blas Islands is an archipelago east of the Panama Canal, in the Caribbean Sea. There are over 300 islands and some of them are uninhabited. No need to say that on these islands, there is no internet access and so you are ‘forced’ to slow down, enjoy the nature and join the local people, from the Guna community, in some of their activities.
But don’t worry, you will not get bored in this place! You can go island hopping, snorkelling, explore the bigger islands, visit the Guna community main village or just read a book on hammock while enjoying one of the best sunsets of your life.
I spent four nights on one of the islands and going back to reality was very hard. If you love the sea and want to leave your daily worries behind for a while, this is the destinations for you.
2. Torres del Paine – Chile
If to the sea you prefer mountains, there are some destinations for you to visit too, if you want to leave your phone behind. On most trekking trips, you will have to disconnect due to the lack of internet coverage. Patagonia is one of these.
I hiked the W trek of the Torres del Paines National Park, in Chile, and spent three nights hiking and a few nights in Puerto Natales, the village where I based myself before the hike. It was easy to detox here for a full week, as there was obviously no internet connections during the trek, but also a very week signal in the village.
The best part of this trip was that I visited this place in April, the start of the winter in the region, and so there were also very few people around and we almost always had the path to ourselves. In this scenario, it was easy to really immerse yourself with the incredible nature and landscape around you, enjoy the silence and reconnect with yourself.
If you are the type of person who doesn’t enjoy just relaxing during their holidays, but still want to disconnect from your phone, Torres del Paine – and Patagonia in general – is the place you are looking for.
3. La Guajira Desert – Colombia
Nothing says ‘no signal’ like a desert! La Guajira Desert is one of the most impressive places I visited in Colombia. Over the three days I spent crossing this place in a jeep, I came across 60 metre high sand dunes, blue sea, burnt cliffs and, finally, the most northerly point of South America.
For the first time after quitting my job and leaving Europe, I had no internet and no phone, and so I was able to spend these four days completely stress-free.
But don’t worry! This place isn’t just sand dunes. Along the way, you can stop for a short hike or maybe go for a swim. If you are crossing the whole desert, your first stop will be Cabo de la Vela, where you can even go surfing or kitesurfing, in this small village where time seems to have stopped. Detoxing from your digital interactions will be easy here, where you are surrounded by lots of smiling faces and people who live in the moment.
Once you get to Punta Gallinas, you will find less and less people. By the time you are here, you will have forgotten you even own a phone and will be able to fall asleep at night on a hammock on the beach, under the stars, while listening to the sound of the waves. To find out how to visit La Guajira desert, click here.
4. The Amazon Rainforest – Ecuador
The Amazon Rainforest is one of the most remote places of the planet. For this reason, it’s no surprise that you will have no signal here. Here, there is so much nature around you, that it’s impossible not to feel a connection with it.
Despite the fact that I packed my days here with activities, to make sure I saw as many things as possible, you will still find yourself slowing down and really enjoy every sound, smell and sight. If you meet people living in the heart of the rainforest, they will invite you to join an improvised football match, make chocolate or yucca bread with them or simply have a chat. Although I’m sure that living in such a remote place has its challenges, these people always seem happy and kind. It’s a nice reminder that living without an internet connection is good for you!
These are just some of the places you could visit on your digital detox holiday. Have you been to any of them or any other place where you could really reconnect with yourself? Let me know in the comments!