Desert Island Tourism: Adventure Travels for the Wanderer Traveller
The term desert island is a fairly misleading one. Most people assume that it is a hot, sandy island with the odd palm tree or so in sight, akin to an actual desert. It is actually just an archaic form of the word deserted. It doesn’t mean that the island in question is dry, but simply that it is uninhabited. There have been several novels throughout history which have highlighted these pristine, untouched wonders of nature. The most famous of them all would certainly be Daniel Defoe’s ‘Robinson Crusoe’ whose protagonist gets stranded in a location that is clearly not a ‘desert island’ but a deserted one. The story of Brendon Grimshaw who purchased Moyenne Island in the Indian Ocean is also well-known. He bought the island for $20,000 in 1964, moved there in 1973 and spent the remaining four decades of his life on it. This has given rise to a very niche aspect of tourism called desert island tourism. Many novels, films and TV shows have inspired people to experience the great outdoors, seclusion and intimacy that can only be offered by the desert island tourism. Tour operators have also eagerly cashed in on this fad and offer several options to discerning customers which allow them to escape civilisation and truly feel like a ‘part of nature’ again.
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Desert Island Tourism: Drivers
Honeymooners and people seeking to visit an offbeat destination are likely to be the biggest customers for desert island tourism. Desert islands offer seclusion, privacy and intimacy like no other destination on the planet which makes them very appealing to newlywed couples. Some desert islands even offer private villas, secluded retreats, eco-resorts and luxury hotels now so that couples can spend time on their own without sacrificing any modern day creature comforts. The second largest group would be people who seek out exotic destinations that are not the traditional tourist magnets. What better way to attract these tourists than their very own desert island for a few days? The third driver could be people wishing to indulge in adventure sports or any outdoor activities. Desert islands frequently offer the option of hiking, mountain biking, walking, trekking, fishing, snorkelling and scuba diving. These options can satisfy the adventure junkie who might also crave some isolation from the hustle and bustle of modern day life.
Desert Island Tourism: Restraints
A major challenge for desert island tourism could be psychological barriers in people’s minds. It is quite unnerving to spend time so far away from civilisation without any access to modern technology. These destinations must make it clear to their customers that they are very much safe and can reach their customers within a very short time in case of any emergency or untoward incident. Customers are also provided with walkie-talkies or satellite phones which they can use if the whole experience is a bit too much. The second major challenge to desert island tourism is cost. Several tour operators charge anywhere between GBP 500 to 1000 for merely a week’s stay for two people with flights not being included. This makes it very expensive for all but the keenest, discerning or well-heeled of travellers.
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Desert Island Tourism: Options
There are thousands of desert islands across the world which people can visit if they wish to explore. Some of the notable ones include Okunoshima Island (Japan), Jaco Island (East Timor), Clipperton Island (Mexico), Tree Island (South China Sea), Palmyra Atoll (Hawaii), Auckland Islands (New Zealand), Mu Ko Ang Thong (Thailand), Ball’s Pyramid (Australia), Cocos Island (Costa Rica), Aldabra Island (Seychelles) and many others.
Desert Island Tourism: Key Players
Some companies offer their customers desert island tourism packages are Docastaway, Phu Quoc Tours, Freedom Adventures, Kantiang Tours, Williams Tours, Emmanuel Tours, Island Safari etc.
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