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30 Places Where Even Presidents Aren’t Welcome 

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Imagine the kind of places where even the presidents aren’t welcome. And, these are not your run-of-the-mill ordinary tourist spots with velvet ropes and ‘No Entry’ signs; these are locations shrouded in enduring mystery, secrecy, even danger. From top-secret government facilities to sacred sites protected by tradition, find out why these 30 places deny access to everyone—including the most powerful people on the planet!

30. The Mormon Church Secret Vault, Utah, USA  

Deep within the mountains of Utah is the Granite Mountain Records Vault, simply known as The Vault, that is effectively a large archive owned by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church). The access to this vault is notoriously restricted, with only authorized church personnel allowed exclusive access to the contents of the vault. The church’s motivations for secrecy have often been questioned and speculated upon by the public.

29. The Queen’s Bedroom, Buckingham Palace, London, United Kingdom 

Buckingham Palace is emblematic of the English monarchy and their history, with a large portion of the palace available for public viewing. However, there’s one corner of the palace that has been kept under the wraps in mainstream media and otherwise—the Queen’s Bedroom. This private area within Buckingham Palace is reserved exclusively for the ruling monarch and her trusted associates. Entry is restricted to authorized personnel, with access closely monitored to maintain the family’s privacy and security. 

28. HavenCo Data Haven, Sealand  

Founded in the year 2000, HavenCo Data Haven—data hosting services company—was set up in Sealand which was a self-declared, unrecognized principality. Garnering massive media attention and public interest at its launch, HavenCo was established as a promise of freedom from government surveillance and censorship. Eight years into its journey, HavenCo Data Haven ceased all operations in November of 2008. Interestingly, no explanation was offered for this sudden move and the site has since remained off-limits.

27. Mount Athos, Greece 

Mount Athos is an autonomous region in Greece, popularly known as the ‘Holy Mountain’. It is home to 20 Eastern Orthodox monasteries and its long Christian presence and historical monastic traditions—which date back to at least 800 AD during the Byzantine Era—garner interest from both the public and the scholarly circles. Since the area is governed by Greek law and religious tradition, entry is restricted to men only.

26. The Church of Our Lady Mary of Zion, Ethiopia 

Located in Axum, Ethiopia, The Church of Our Lady Mary of Zion is believed to house the ‘Ark of the Covenant’, a sacred relic mentioned in the Bible. Access to the chapel containing the ark is restricted to a select group of Ethiopian monks, with no entry permitted to outsiders. 

25. Snake Island, Brazil 

Snake Island—also known as ‘Ilha da Queimada Grande’—is an uninhabited island off the coast of Brazil and is home to one of the world’s most venomous snakes, namely, the golden lancehead viper. To protect visitors from the dangerous snakes, entry to the island is strictly prohibited. 

24. The Tomb of Qin Shi Huang, China 

Guarded by strict security measures, the tomb of China’s first emperor, Qin Shi Huang, remains sealed to this day. It is believed to contain a vast underground mausoleum with a life-sized terracotta army, along with priceless artifacts and treasures. However, the tomb has remained unexplored to date due to concerns over preservation and potential booby traps installed at the time of construction. 

23. Swiss Bank Vaults, Switzerland 

Swiss bank vaults are renowned for their security and privacy, serving as storage for valuables, documents, and assets of high-net-worth individuals and institutions. The access to these accounts is strictly controlled by the banks and limited to their respective account holders and authorized personnel. 

22. The Coca-Cola Vault, Georgia, USA 

The Coca-Cola Vault is a highly secure facility at the World of Coca-Cola museum in Atlanta, Georgia, where the secret formula for Coca-Cola is reportedly stored. Owing to the nature of the stored asset, the access is restricted to a select few individuals with high-level security clearance and not open to those outside of the Coca-Cola group. 

21. Fort Knox, Kentucky, USA 

Fort Knox is a United States Army post and the site of the United States Bullion Depository, purportedly holding a large portion of the country’s gold reserves. While it is occasionally open to public tours, access to the depository itself is highly restricted. Fort Knox is named in honor of Henry Knox, Chief of Artillery in the American Revolutionary War and the first United States Secretary of War.

20. Pine Gap, Northern Territory, Australia 

Pine Gap is a joint defense facility operated by the United States and Australia, involved in signals intelligence, satellite tracking, and missile defense. Due to the nature of operations at Pine Gap, the access is restricted to authorized personnel, and the facility is surrounded by extensive security measures to ensure privacy. 

19. The Royal Mausoleum of Hawaii, Hawaii, USA 

The Royal Mausoleum of Hawaii, also known as Mauna ‘Ala, is the final resting place of several members of the Hawaiian royal family. While it is open to the public on certain occasions, entry to the mausoleum itself is restricted to authorized individuals and ceremonial events. 

18. Woomera Prohibited Area, Australia 

The Woomera Prohibited Area is a vast military testing range in South Australia, primarily used for missile launches, weapons testing, and aerospace research. Due to the nature of operations and overall sensitivity around defense in general, the entry is restricted to authorized personnel and the area is closely monitored to prevent unauthorized access.

17. The Great Pacific Garbage Patch 

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is a vast area of marine debris floating in the Pacific Ocean, primarily composed of plastic waste. While it can be accessed by researchers and environmental organizations, there are no official entry points or organized tours due to its remote location and environmental hazards. 

16. Room 641A, San Francisco, USA 

Room 641A is an alleged surveillance facility operated by the National Security Agency (NSA) within a telecommunications building in San Francisco. While its existence has been documented, the access to its operations are likely to be restricted to authorized personnel. The facility was first established and operated in 2003. The true nature and purpose of its existence was only disclosed publicly in 2006.

15. The Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), Korean Peninsula 

The DMZ serves as a buffer zone between North Korea and South Korea and is one of the most heavily fortified borders in the world. Considering the recurring tensions between the two nations, the access is strictly controlled by military authorities on both sides of the DMZ, with only limited tourist access to designated areas. 

14. Google Data Centers, Various Locations Worldwide 

Google’s data centers house the servers and infrastructure that power its vast network of services and store immense amounts of user data. Entry is restricted to authorized employees and contractors to ensure security and protect sensitive information. 

13. The Vatican Necropolis, Vatican City 

The Vatican Necropolis is an ancient burial ground beneath St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City. It is widely believed to contain the tombs of several popes and early Christians. Owing to the sacredness attached to the remains at this burial ground, the access is limited to guided tours and scholars under Vatican supervision. 

12. Cheyenne Mountain Complex, Colorado, USA 

The Cheyenne Mountain Complex is a military installation and command center built within a mountain in Colorado. Its primary purpose is to provide protection and continuity of government in the event of a nuclear attack or other catastrophic event. Considering the importance and infrastructure investment made towards the fulfillment of this installation, the access is restricted to authorized personnel. 

11. Metro-2, Moscow, Russia 

Metro-2 is a rumored secret underground metro system in Moscow, allegedly built during the Soviet era for the exclusive use of high-ranking government officials. While its existence has never been officially acknowledged, it is safe to assume that if it did exist, the access would undoubtedly be restricted to the political elite. 

10. Bohemian Grove, California, USA 

Bohemian Grove is a private campground in California where an exclusive men’s club—including prominent political figures—gathers for an annual retreat. While the activities within the grove are kept confidential, owing to the privacy detail of the high profile attendees, the entry is restricted to members and invited guests only. 

9. Mezhgorye, Russia 

Mezhgorye is a closed town in the Republic of Bashkortostan, Russia. It is believed to house secret nuclear facilities and military installations. Owing to the power dynamics that Russia is a part of and its current state of political unrest, the access is restricted to authorized personnel. The town is also surrounded by extensive security measures. 

8. Dulce Base, New Mexico, USA 

Dulce Base is the subject of numerous conspiracy theories alleging secret underground facilities and extraterrestrial encounters. While its existence remains unconfirmed, access to any such underground complex would undoubtedly be restricted. 

7. Diego Garcia, British Indian Ocean Territory 

Diego Garcia is a strategically important military base leased by the United States from the United Kingdom. Entry is restricted to military personnel as well as other authorized personnel, with limited access granted to researchers and contractors. 

6. Mount Weather Emergency Operations Center, Virginia, USA 

Mount Weather serves as a relocation site for high-ranking US government officials in the event of a national emergency. Owing to the nature of its establishment, the access is restricted to authorized personnel, and the facility is equipped with bunkers, communication systems, and emergency provisions to ensure the continuity of government operations.

5. Vatican Secret Archives, Vatican City 

Despite its name, the Vatican Secret Archives are not a repository of sinister secrets but rather a collection of historical documents spanning centuries of papal history. However, access to the archives is tightly controlled, with limited entry granted only to qualified researchers under Vatican supervision. 

4. Room 39, North Korea 

Room 39 is a secretive organization in North Korea responsible for generating foreign currency for the ruling regime through illicit activities such as counterfeiting, drug trafficking, and arms sales. Considering the notoriety attached to the operations of this establishment, the access to its operations is restricted to top government officials and trusted operatives. 

3. North Sentinel Island, Andaman Islands, India 

Inhabited by the Sentinelese, one of the last uncontacted tribes in the world, North Sentinel Island is protected by Indian law to preserve the tribe’s isolation and way of life. The entry to this island, therefore, is forbidden due to the risk of introducing diseases within the tribe and potential violence against outsiders.

2. Svalbard Global Seed Vault, Norway 

The Svalbard Global Seed Vault serves as a backup storage facility for seeds from around the world, safeguarding agricultural biodiversity in the event of a global catastrophe. While researchers can access the vault under strict conditions, public entry is prohibited to prevent contamination or tampering with the collection stored in the vault. 

1. Area 51, Nevada, USA 

Area 51 is perhaps the most famous restricted area in the world, known for conspiracy theories and alleged extraterrestrial encounters. This highly classified United States Air Force facility is off-limits to the public due to its role in testing experimental aircraft and weapons technology. 

So, there you have it folks! From classified military installations to ancient sacred sites, these 30 places are off-limits to all but a select few. While their allure may tempt the curious traveler, their restricted access only adds to their mystique and intrigue!

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