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A new book by Australian writer PENNY WATSON shines the spotlight on some of the planet’s greatest treasures.

Arches National Park. PHOTO:  Intricate Explorer/Unsplash

AS THE population emerges from a modern-age global catastrophe, a new reality dawns: a truth-telling that says the planet’s greatest commodity is not its iron ore or petroleum.

It’s our wilderness, the pockets of the planet where, by definition, we humans have been mostly absent.

These wildernesses that need to be protected have extraordinary wildlife, ecology and biodiversity.

Wilderness: The Most Sensational Natural Places on Earth is a new coffee table book that is part travel inspiration, part lounge chair eye-candy, part battle cry.

Within its 240-pages there are 40 destinations featuring some of the most incredible wilderness areas around the world.

Whether you want to armchair travel or pack your bags, the destinations in the book include information about conservation and regeneration alongside opportunities for travellers to tread more lightly while travelling to the world’s remote places.

From the wild grasslands of the Mongolian Steppe to the incredible biodiversity of the Galápagos Islands, Penny demonstrates how to travel consciously and sustainably to these destinations.

While some may argue that the best way to preserve these incredible places is by not travelling there at all, many of the communities in these wildernesses rely on tourism for their future.

The income derived from visitors assists in furthering conservation efforts, funding research and spreading awareness, particularly where wildlife is concerned.

Vatnajokill Glacier. PHOTO: srybarmarekk/Shutterstock

Galapagos Islands. PHOTO: BlueOrange Studio/Shutterstock

South America. PHOTO: Se?bastien Lecocq/Alamy Stock

Turtle, Great Barrier Reef. PHOTO: Tourism and Events Queensland


Penny Watson is a traveller, writer and storyteller. Her award-winning words about people, places, food and adventures in the wild have found a home in a ream of magazines, newspapers and digital spaces in Australia and around the globe.

Penny’s books include Slow Travel and Ultimate Campsites: Australia. Penny is a member of both the British Guild of Travel Writers and Australian Society of Travel Writers. In 2021, she took her own slow travel advice and moved from her hometown of Melbourne to Bali.

She lives there with her amazing partner Phil and their two exceptional children, Digby and Etienne.


Wilderness: The Most Sensational Natural Places on Earth. By Penny Watson.

Published by Hardie Grant Explore, September 20. Hardback RRP: $45.