In the past few years, it has developed into a competition for globetrotters to collect the coolest and most unusual passport stamps. For a particularly well-decorated passport, they take some daring detours and routes, lasting several days, to pick up a stamp in some of the most remote places in the world. Some stamps are particularly popular due to their delightful designs. Others are very rare, because they are issued by countries which are not frequently visited.
The ruined city, built in the 15th century by the Incas and located 2,430 metres between the peaks of Huayna Picchu and Machu Picchu, belongs to Peru. The city issues souvenir stamps to tourists, which ensure that you will not forget this extraordinary experience in a hurry. If you are one of the lucky ones who ever gets to visit Machu Picchu, one of the new seven wonders of the world, then you can pick up your stamp in a hut to the left of the entrance.
2. Easter Island
Due to its remote location in the South Pacific, Easter Island is a fascinating spectacle for every visitor. Most people do not know much about them, but a picture immediately appears in our head when we think of them – the colossal stone sculptures, the Moai. How fitting then, that the landmark of Easter Island forms the stamp, which is issued to you here! Even in a passport overflowing with stamps, the Easter Island stamp has an extraordinary recognition value. It occupies a special place in the heart of travellers.
The southernmost continent is usually the last one to be visited by globetrotters. Travelling here is usually expensive and time-intensive. Often, the only way is to join a research expedition by ship or aeroplane from Argentina, Chile, New Zealand or South Africa. The Antarctic is not an official country, but rather 50 nations and their respective research centres, represented by one continent. Many of these stations have their own passport stamps. Particularly hardworking polar explorers may even have more than one at the end of their trip! You’ll probably get the most special stamp at the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station at the South Pole.
4. Tristan da Cunha
Tristan da Cunha is considered the most remote island in the world. The only way to get here is to take a 5-day boat trip, starting in South Africa. No wonder then, that this stamp is in high demand and can only be proudly showcased by very few people.
5. Guantanamo Bay
The American Guantanamo Bay Naval Base in the south of Cuba sounds like an absurd tourist destination, mainly due to the highly controversial prison camp. Since the easing of relations between the US and Cuba, it has become somewhat easier to visit Guantanamo Bay, but undertaking a trip there still takes lots of planning and effort. Many wonder if this rare stamp is really worth the trouble…
6. Checkpoint Charlie
The ‘GDR stamp‘ does not come from the past, but is issued for a few euros in Berlin at Checkpoint Charlie. Of course, this is just a souvenir for tourists and not proof of a distant journey. Nevertheless, it’s an unusual addition to your passport. A real travel fan is happy about every new stamp!
I have not just randomly typed some letters – the above place actually exists. Believe it or not, the village in Wales has the longest name in Europe, with 58 characters. (It is even the second longest in the world!) To mark this record in your passport, you can get it stamped in the ‘James Pringle Weavers’ shop as a souvenir.
8. North Korea
The highly controversial political situation in North Korea, and the fact that only a very limited number of visitors are allowed to cross the borders of the country every year, make this passport stamp a very special one. The North Korean government only allows tourists to enter the country, if they have booked a trip through a recognised tour operator. For many of you, a stay in a poverty-stricken country is probably not desirable, but travellers always tell us how informative and interesting their trip into the unknown was.
Akhzivland is a so-called micronation, which there are quite a few of worldwide. By definition, these are fantasy-states, which appear to the outside as sovereign states. However, they are not recognised as such under international law, and they lack important features. Akhzivland lies on the west coast of Israel. It is about 10,000 square metres in size and has a population of two. Nevertheless, it has its own flag, its own national anthem and issues passport stamps, which is why it always attracts curious tourists.
Ushuaia in Argentina is the southernmost city in the world and has its own passport stamp to pay tribute to its geographical peculiarity. More precisely, there are two different stamps. One is issued by the Tourist Information Centre, and the other by the Tierra del Fuego National Park. At the sight of the sweet penguins, which you can actually encounter in Ushuaia, and the Argentine flag with the writing Fin del Mundo, ‘end of the world’, your friends at home will be completely green with envy.
Have you got holiday fever now? Of course, a holiday destination doesn’t always have to be so far away, but it’s cool to find these extraordinary passport stamps
If you like what you've seen on this page so far, why not check out our shiny new podcast. Holidayguru's Gurucast is our newest way to inspire and interact with you beautiful people. Here you can learn about new and exciting places, pick up some great tips on how to save on your travels and also listen to interviews with some of the world's most influential personalities. Happy listening! :)