Where to get a taste of silent travel around the world
On the quest for quiet, travelers are searching for places and spaces with no-noise policies.
Whether you want to completely disconnect in the wilderness or just spend an hour or two soaking up the benefits of silence, these quiet places and activities around the world will help you cultivate a deeper sense of calm.
Ring in the New Year silently in Bali
New Year’s Eve parties can be boisterous, sure, but the Balanese mark the occasion with 24 hours of silence. On Nyepi Day, which falls on the third day of a six-day festival celebrating the Balinese new year in March, the entire island of Bali falls silent and remains indoors, taking time for self-reflection. The evening before Nyepi Day, join locals for the parade of ogoh-ogoh, when papier-mâché effigies are carried through the streets.
Deep dive into underwater sounds on a luxury yacht
Luxury yacht cruise line PONANT boasts the Blue Eye underwater lounge, offering near-total acoustic immersion via hydrophones that transmit the natural symphony of the sea into the lounge. To take the zen immersion one step further, the lounge is also outfitted with Body Listening Sofas that vibrate in unison with the sounds of the ocean to create an underwater experience that taps all the senses.
Experience 10 days of silence on a Vipassana Meditation Retreat
Held at retreat centers across the world, Vipassana is a meditation technique taught to new practitioners over the course of 10 days. For the duration of their stay, attendees must remain silent and are not permitted to engage in anything that might distract them from the task at hand—learning to focus the mind with sustained attention—including smart phones, books, and exercise (excluding a daily walk outside). Vipassana is not for the faint of heart, but advocates say it’s one of the best ways to quiet the mind-chatter.
Leave the hustle and bustle behind in Swedish Lapland
The clue is in the name at Peace & Quiet Hotel, a remote getaway in Swedish Lapland, where guests stay in luxury glass cabins overlooking a snowy, watery landscape. During the day, local guides lead wilderness expeditions and activities like dog sledding and ice fishing. After dark, warm up at the shared spa before heading back to your cozy cocoon to watch the Northern Lights dance overhead.
Try mindful eating at a silent dinner
Part performance art, part opulent meal, The Silent Dinners is an international event series that invites guests to dine in silence. During the three-course affair, diners are asked to refrain from talking, reading, or using cell phones—all the better to absorb the experience and savor the meal. Since its launch in 2006, The Silent Dinners has hosted 49 meals in 10 countries. Get on the waitlist to be notified of upcoming events.
Visit the quietest national park in the United States
The popularity of America’s national parks may be booming, but that doesn’t mean you can’t find a crowd-free place to enjoy nature. The least visited U.S. national park in 2021 was Alaska’s Gates of the Arctic National Park & Preserve, which is so remote that visitors must backcountry hike or fly into the park—there are no marked trails or roads. Those determined enough to make the journey will be rewarded with glacier-forged valleys and arctic tundra blanketed in wild flowers. And best of all: no other humans for miles.