The least visited places in the Atlas

I’m curious about places in the Atlas that nobody has been to (eg: https://www.atlasobscura.com/places/lake-tele). I’m even more curious about the places that exactly one person has been to (eg: https://www.atlasobscura.com/places/southern-pole-of-inaccessibility). And I’m most curious of all about who those singular explorers in our community are. If you are one of those people who has been to one of those places, we’d like to hear your story!

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What are other places no one has been to, Josh?

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I don’t know. I stumbled on Lac Tele, since it’s one I originally posted (and once came very close to actually visiting.)

Is it possible to run a query of the AO database to get a list of others spots that nobody has been to? Or only one person has been to?

This article from a few years ago listed some places, although it looks like all of them have at least one visitor now.

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Even with one person there, I think most of the places would make for one hell of a journey!

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@Josh @davidplotz, here is the last page of all the places in the Atlas, sorted by most “Been Theres”: https://www.atlasobscura.com/places?page=841&sort=visits_count.

841 pages. Woah. You can navigate backward from those links above to browse the most elusive spots.

(Bonus: Here’s a list of the places in the Atlas that need the most love. They have the least “Want to Visits”: https://www.atlasobscura.com/places?page=841&sort=likes_count. :frowning_face: )

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I would very much like to be the first member of the Atlas Obscura community to make a pilgrimage to pay tribute to the only three human beings to have ever died in outer space.

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I submitted this for consideration two years ago. It’s still pending, for whatever reason, but I don’t believe that anyone else is aware of it. It’s a museum, but not advertised as such, as it’s located directly over an eye-wateringly expensive outlet.

It’s one of my favourite things in all of Paris.

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This looks interesting! Do you have any more information about the actual location of the museum? What store it’s a part of, etc?

It’s above the Breguet shop on Place Vendome, Paris, in the little known museum. Staff are very helpful and seemed surprised to receive visitors. Unfortunately I didn’t take any good quality photos; only one, in fact, so it’s not suitable for inclusion.

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You could always try to email the museum

That’s helpful! Thank you!

What I want to know is who are the other people who’ve been to a place I added and how did they find my entry for it almost immediately.

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I visited there a few years ago, in 2016, I think. I was on a kind of aimless, solo roadtrip around central and western PA. Had camped the previous night in the Gallitzin State Forest and was doing a roundabout scenic drive to the Johnstown Dam and happened to see a sign for it on the side of the road and made an unplanned stop.

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Neat-o. I went to school near (Pitt Johnstown) and the locals were into random visits in the name of scaring the bezeesus out of newbies or just a fun place to be creeped out whilst under the influence of some… uh… substances.

Now, what I’d enjoy is a way to see who’s ticked off a place as visited. I don’t know if that would dissuade people from marking their explorations but it wouldn’t for me at any rate.

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I’d like to visit 4, 6, 7 and 8. I’ve probably walked over #5 quite a few times without knowing the history. Thank for sharing.

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It occurs to me that there are a few places in AO that are impossible to visit.

For example, this place might not exist at all (even though 15 people claim to have been there):

And this place was last seen in 1912 (even though 37 people claim to have been there):

This begs the question: Should a place that is impossible to visit even be included in AO?

Of course, there are also many places listed that are illegal to visit (like most abandoned buildings). But those places are probably valid inclusions, as one could consider a place “visited” if merely glimpsed from the outside and behind the no-trespassing signs.

Does anyone know of any other impossible AO places to visit?

With more than a hundred extra pages of places since, I figured it’s time to update both links:

Least “want to visit”: https://www.atlasobscura.com/places?page=958&sort=likes_count

Least visited: https://www.atlasobscura.com/places?page=958&sort=visits_count

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I would say it makes sense to keep the entries for these unvisit-able sites if the appeal is the story itself. Clipperton Island, for example, is very difficult to go to. To me however, the point of its page is not to make people want to go there but to make its dark past and peculiar history (being officially an overseas territory of France closest to Mexico) better known.

Others of course, aren’t places but objects or even concepts. The Begger’s Benison artifacts, for example. If I were to visit the Museum of the University of St. Andrews, even if I didn’t make an appointment to see the artifacts themselves, I think I’d mark it as visited just because I was in the vicinity of the artifacts and thanks to AO I know they exist. I think I’d do the same with the Cow Tunnels you mentioned.

Same with the entry on Chichén Itzá’s Castillo, which doesn’t talk about the building itself but its peculiar architectural feature that plays with shadows during the equinox. I would consider marking it as visited even if you didn’t go during this date or if you saw the “crawling snake” thanks to the nighttime show. Some might think of that as “cheating” but I’d say it makes sense to keep the pages just to give people the option.

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The number on “been there?” is unreliable. Gangkhar Puensum is supposed to be “the tallest unclimbed mountain in the world”, but somehow, 2 people have been there - or so it seems. Not quite the same, but Mongolia/Russia Border Crossing No. 487 is very remote, even by Mongolian standards, it is complicated to obtain permits to get to, and to top things off, it is pretty fat from being breathtaking. However, 2 people have been there. I know for a fact that one is legit, but I have serious doubts about the second one.