Hardest Countries To Visit

Travel Forums Off Topic Hardest Countries To Visit

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1. Posted by Trebor Illusion (Budding Member 268 posts) 27w Star this if you like it!

Isn't Saudi Arabia difficult to get a visit/non bussiness visa to?

Like, I've heard that you must be a male, and have ties to Saudi Arabia, before you're allowed in (for non business purposes), I don't know, but, that's what I've heard.

Can anyone clarify Saudi Arabia for me please?

And..While we're at it/talking about this;
Can anyone else think of anywhere else that's perhaps difficult to get into (on a UK passport)(or other if you have it or've heard of it and going somewhere isn't happening because of it).

I believe I can go to Cuba but an American passport holder can't?
I also believe I can catch a direct flight from London's Gatwick Airport (LGW) to Havana, and I'm not sure, but, Miami has a fight to Havana too, now, and it was a huge step in diplomacy to get under the Obama administration, I believe, but I don't know; I also heard that that shut during the Trump administration, but IDK; all I know is, I'm a British Citizen with a UK passport and Havana has a direct flight from Gatwick Airport.

I've heard stories of Russian and Chinese visas taking a long time to process so you've got to apply for them many, many, months in advanced; but I'm not talking about that - I'm talking about countries harder to visit than that, which in my eyes, getting into Russia or China's possible.
I'm talking about countries that're probably-actually impossible to visit, like what I believe to be true of Saudi Arabia, going for non work purposes.

Anyone care to shed any light on this?

Anyone know of anywhere that's impossible to visit?

I'm not sure about N. Korea. Seems it's a given you're not getting in there unless you're Dennis Rodman, but, IDK.

[ Edit: Edited on 14 Apr 2021, 12:55 GMT by Trebor Illusion ]

2. Posted by Trebor Illusion (Budding Member 268 posts) 27w Star this if you like it!

A quick search on google and short glance and...

It's showing me how to get a business visa or visit visa if I'm a Muslim; which, makes sense, as in Islam, Muslims are required to make the Hajj which is a pilgrimage to Mecca in the country, so I understand why that's important for getting into Saudi Arabia for non business purposes.

But I still didn't see in and amongst my google search result's glancing anything about non Muslim visiting visa (opposed to business visa).

I mean, if it was for love and she was a Muslim, I'd convert if it was important to her and her family and we were getting married and starting our own family, but outside of that, I'm good, so I'm thinking Saudi Arabia is off the table because I'm a non Muslim?
I don't know.

I knew a British guy who had a Saudi parent so he got to go; I don't think he was Muslim or that that mattered since he had a Saudi parent, so, he got to go regardless of his faith to visit the country (on a non business trip).

[ Edit: Edited on 14 Apr 2021, 13:01 GMT by Trebor Illusion ]

3. Posted by leics2 (Travel Guru 3335 posts) 27w 1 Star this if you like it!

>Like, I've heard, that you must be a male and, have ties to Saudi Arabia before you're allowed in for non business purposes,

You are wrong to state that you must be male. Muslim UK citizens of both sexes can obtain visas for Umrah and/or Hajj. Detailed info here:


>I believe I can go to Cuba

UK citizens can visit Cuba. https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/cuba/entry-requirements

US citizens cannot visit Cuba for tourism purposes: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/international-travel/International-Travel-Country-Information-Pages/Cuba.html

>I'm not sure about N. Korea.

UK and other citizens can visit N Korea, including for tourism purposes as part of an organised tour group. Tourist visits have been possible for quite a long time: I know several people who have visited over the years.

>Anyone know of anywhere that's impossible to visit?

I'm not aware of any countries which blanket-ban allUK citizens, though many require a visa and some visas are very difficult..sometimes impossible... to get. You can check entry requirements here: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice

At the moment, of course, lots of countries have bans on UK (and other) citizens.

Additionally, there are always some countries on the UK 'do not visit' list. That ...and the 'advise against all but essential visits'....means travel insurance is automatically invalidated. It is almost impossible to get the necessary (and imo 100% essential) travel insurance to visit those countries. If cover can be found it is very, very expensive.

4. Posted by AndyF (Moderator 2418 posts) 27w 1 Star this if you like it!

Wikivoyage is useful for this stuff - their "get in" section for each country generally gives a good idea of the hoops that different nationalities need to jump through. https://en.wikivoyage.org/wiki/Main_Page

The authoritative answer is to look on your country's government website to find out entry requirements and advice for your nationality. In our case, https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice

Often the obstacles aren't a blanket ban on a nationality but other barriers, for instance Russia now require UK passport holders to attend their embassy for fingerprints to be taken, brought in for political reasons to make access harder, or an individual may have problems upon entry if their passport contains the stamp of that country's enemy. Other places charge a punitive visa fee that reflects how their citizens are treated. Bhutan make it hard, only selling visas to tourists who buy an approved tour costing $250 a day apparently. We'll take you, if you make it worth our while.

Makes Yorkshire look positively friendly.

5. Posted by Trebor Illusion (Budding Member 268 posts) 27w Star this if you like it!

I'm left thinking it's not going to happen unless I were Muslim now, when thinking about Riyadh and going as me as I am now, like my friend with a Saudi parent was able to.

This thread is teaching me that it's easier for me to get into North Korea than it is into Saudi Arabia.

[ Edit: Edited on 14 Apr 2021, 15:36 GMT by Trebor Illusion ]

6. Posted by Teoni (Travel Guru 1742 posts) 27w 1 Star this if you like it!

Quoting Trebor Illusion

I'm left thinking it's not going to happen unless I were Muslim now, when thinking about Riyadh and going as me as I am now, like my friend with a Saudi parent was able to.

Perhaps this information will help :
‘Let us welcome you to Arabia’: Tourists are now welcome in Saudi Arabia

And this :
About e-visa

[ Edit: Edited on 14 Apr 2021, 16:30 GMT by Teoni ]

7. Posted by goodfish (Full Member 260 posts) 27w Star this if you like it!

Teoni beat me to it: see the second link she provided.
You just can't go NOW because of COVID. Not sure why you think it's otherwise more difficult than N. Korea.

Post 8 was removed by a moderator
9. Posted by karazyal (Travel Guru 3586 posts) 27w 1 Star this if you like it!

"Hardest Countries To Visit..."

I have not been to this country but from what I read Bhutan can be a little difficult to visit on the cheap. Just getting there you have requirements that tourists obtain hotel bookings through Bhutan travel agencies. There are limits on how many can visit. There are daily spending limits too.


I prefer to book my own flights and hotel rooms.

When I have a big lottery win I may consider visiting in the future.

10. Posted by Teoni (Travel Guru 1742 posts) 27w Star this if you like it!

Tokelau I think is pretty difficult place to visit. You need a permit arranged by a liaison officer in Apia along with a exit and re entry permit from Samoa immigration that takes about two weeks to process along with permission from the leaders of every island you want to visit in the atoll (and it is not uncommon to be denied) then you need a police and medical report from Samoan doctors and after you have all those documents you may not even get a place on the boat to Tokelau as it is frequently full and locals are prioritised.

[ Edit: Edited on 15 Apr 2021, 01:32 GMT by Teoni ]