Somalia

Category: 2-World

 

(Photo: RapidTravelChai / Flickr)


Indeed, most of the world’s least visited countries seem to fall in one of two categories. There are the Naurus, where you’ll puzzle over what to do, and the Somalias, where it’s simply too dangerous to do much of anything at all. (As Somalia’s Wikitravel page aptly notes, “the easiest method for staying safe in Somalia is not to go in the first place.”)

Most of the “nothing to do” countries are the crumbs that dust a map of the Pacific Ocean: the Federated States of Micronesia, the Solomon Islands, Kiribati, and Tuvalu. The latter shares with the Maldives the dubious distinction of having "highest elevation points" that are the lowest on earth – 15 feet above sea level. Visit while you can, as rising sea levels could make the island uninhabitable within a century.

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Except, perhaps, in Turkmenistan (#7), where visitors who brave the onerous Soviet-esque visa application process are rewarded with sites like a 50-foot golden statue of former dictator Saparmurat Niyazov in the capital Ashgabat, which rotates throughout the day to face the sun. But the country’s most indisputably impressive site is a massive flaming crater deep in the Karakum Desert. Measuring 230 feet across and almost 70 feet deep, the so-called “Door to Hell” has been burning continuously since Soviet scientists lit it on fire in 1971.

Obscure? Yes. But that's part of the charm.

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(from http://peakwater[dot]org/)