Technically, the Faroe Islands are part of the Kingdom of Denmark, but they’re still a self-governing territory, stuck between Norway and Iceland in the North Atlantic Ocean. The volcanic islands have become massively popular for their dramatic landscapes, jagged peaks, and treacherous waters, and even more so because you can traverse many of the 18 islands by car using a system of tunnels and causeways.

The Faroe Islands understand the consequences of overtourism, though, and for the past two years they’ve closed to tourists for a weekend so volunteers can maintain and improve the local infrastructure. The archipelago of only 50,000 people sees over twice that many people visit every year, but the islands still feel like a windswept world away. And as you hike through its villages and volcanic mountaintops, you’ll gain a new perspective on how people live in environments far different than your own.