In Photos: Places That Are Forbidden to Tourists

Lascaux Caves, France

A landslide which clogged up the entrance meant that these French caves went undisturbed until they were rediscovered in 1940. Home to Stone Age wall art believed to be a staggering 17,300 years old, they quickly became a hotspot for tourists until experts warned that the visitors were ruining the priceless paintings. As a result, the caves were shut to the public in 1967—meaning the only way you can enjoy them is through photos.


Surtsey Island, Iceland

This island simply didn’t exist until it sprouted from the ocean following a volcanic eruption in 1967. But rather than let tourists traipse through the rocky outpost roughly 20 miles south of the mainland, the Icelandic government immediately closed it to all visitors in order to examine how nature colonized the virgin land on its own.


North Sentinel Island, Andaman Islands

Located in the Bay of Bengal, this remote forest island is probably most famous for its inhospitable inhabitants. It’s home to the Sentinelese, a small tribe who have remained isolated from the rest of the world for more than 60,000 years. And they want to remain that way, so much so that they have been known to kill unwanted visitors.


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