The World is divided into continents and continents into countries. But, this division is just for the sake of defining boundaries. There is hardly any country in the world that prevents the citizens of another country from visiting its territory as a tourist. While there could be some restrictions in case of bilateral disputes or conflicts between two countries but even then, a complete ban is highly unlikely. Globalisation has converted the entire world into a family and we can legally visit any country in the world.

People who travel frequently would know that there’s more to the world than we see on a world map or google. Despite the global connectivity and internet reach, a large part of the world remains unexplored and several such areas exist in some of the most connected countries. However, in the case of the connected countries, it’s not because of the geographic complication but authority restrictions that common people can not visit these places. This might come to you as a shock but there are hundreds of such places where the entry of a common person is not allowed. This list features 9 such places.

9. Tomb of Qin Shi Huang: It is the place where the mausoleum of China’s first emperor Qin Shi Huang is buried for 2,200 years. The mausoleum is buried underneath a pyramid. This place remains a mystery for historians and archaeologists due to restricted access. All the contents of the tomb remain sealed. The Chinese government has banned the excavation of the tomb making it one of the most forbidden places in the world.

8. Area 51, USA: Despite many protests and demonstrations to reveal the secret hidden in Area 51, the US government has managed to keep it a secret. Located in Nevada, Area 51 is one of the leading topics giving birth to conspiracy theories. While the US claims that it is a military area that is used for testing of weapons and aircraft, conspiracy theorists claim that the base is related to Alien study and elements related to aliens are kept here.

7. Doomsday Vault, Norway: While it appears to be secret confinement from some distance, the Doomsday Vault is a seed bank located at the centre of Arctic Svalbard archipelago. A variety of plant seeds are stored in the vault. The seeds are kept here to ensure their safety in case of an apocalypse or a global crisis. Only certain people can access the vault and that too on certain days. Seeds are sent from every corner of the world for storage in the vault.

6. Heard Island, Australia: Located between Antarctica and Madagascar, Heard Island remains to be one of the most unexplored places on the earth. While its location is far away from Australia, the country has political control over this island. The Australian government has restricted entry into the island as it is made up of debris and limestones formed due to volcanic eruptions. There are two active volcanoes on the island.

5. North Brother Island, US: Despite being one of the freest countries, US still has imposed restrictions over a number of areas in the country. North Brother Island is another restricted place in the US. Once a quarantine hospital and home to Typhoid Mary, North Brother Island remains a forbidden place for common people and it has a bird sanctuary.

4. Ise Grand Shrine, Japan: Japan is known for respecting its culture and protecting its values and shrines that are a symbol of its existence. Ise Grand is the most important of over 80,000 shrines in Japan due to its unique architecture. The temple is a symbol of the Shinto traditions dating back to the 8th century. The shrine is rebuilt every 20 years and only the royal family can enter the premises.

3. Surtsey Island, Iceland: Iceland is one of the most beautiful and touristic places in the world. Surtsey is a little island formed due to a volcanic eruption off the southern coast of Iceland. It is regarded as the newest island on the planet and only a few scientists and geologists are allowed to enter the island. 

2. North Sentinel Island, India: You can’t separate Indian and mysteries for very long. The North Sentinel Island is home to the Sentinelese tribe that has remained isolated for thousands of years. Located in the Andaman chain, the North Sentinel Island remains unexplored as the Sentinelese tribe turns violent whenever someone approaches them. The Indian government provides security to the Sentinelese tribe and has restricted entry into the island.

1. Lascaux Caves, France: A famous place for archaeologists, the Lascaux caves is the home to prehistoric paintings that are nearly 17,300 years old. The cave has remained closed to the general public since 1963. This is because archaeologists believe that human interference may destroy ancient paintings.