Looking For Peace And Quiet? Four Countries Where You're Sure To Find It9:17:00 AM
Peace and quiet. It's such a commonly-used phrase that the words sometimes seem to lose all meaning. "What do I want? Just some peace and quiet", we say, meaning that we just want to sit for a while with our thoughts. When we say it, we mostly mean that we just want to have a moment to ourselves. What do we do with that time? It doesn't matter - the time itself is what we're after.
However if you put some thought into getting real peace and quiet, there is actually more meaning to the phrase. Peace and quiet aren't about having a moment to think. More accurately, we should say that it is about having time not to think. To just be. When you book a holiday to get away from the daily hubbub, why not get as far away as possible? Go to the places where you can feel real peace and quiet. Don’t forget to bring your travel kit, but don’t worry too much about earplugs!
By at least one definition, Iceland is the most peaceful country on the planet. This has been confirmed by the Institute for Economics and Peace. Their index rates countries based on levels of violent crime and military activity. Iceland, which does not have a standing army, has a quiet and bucolic charm. Its high scores on standard of living and tolerance - along with its famous hot spas - make it attractive to those seeking peace.
With a population of over a billion and a substantial landmass, India has a bit of everything for everyone. Certainly, in the cities it is hard to describe it as peaceful and quiet. And yet within those same borders there are shrines to some of the world's most reflective faiths.
The Dalai Lama lives in India at Mcleodganj, a temple complex that stands as a pilgrimage site for many Buddhists. If inner peace is what you crave, you may find it here. If you're in the city of Delhi and want some quiet time, try the Lotus Temple.
Peru is immediately associated by many of us with the Incas, known as one of the most peaceful ancient civilizations. Indeed, some argue that that kind-hearted nature was their downfall. And while the Incas died out, Peru itself is still a country where peace and thinking time are valued hugely. Huacachina is an oasis in the South-West of the country that is one of the world's most peaceful spots. If you're of a meditative bent, this is the place for you.
In 2016, a study showed that there are only ten countries - out of nearly 200 worldwide - not involved in any military conflict. That's around 5% of the world, and Costa Rica is one of those countries. In Latin America, which has historically not been without its military problems, Costa Rica is a jewel.
Its happiness as a nation is put down to its social engagement, with citizens feeling valued and comfortable about life. To some outsiders, its green approach to the environment and lack of conflict may seem naive. But ask the people what they think - they'll be happy to tell you.