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This time last year, as the coronavirus tightened its grip, The National identified 10 of the world’s most remote destinations which were untouched by the pandemic.

By that point, more than 1.5 million infections had been reported across 209 countries and territories.

The rapid spread of the virus made finding a safe haven a daunting task.

Fast-forward 12 months, about 143 million cases have been confirmed around the world, making the challenge more arduous.

But what of our 10 far-flung lands which were untouched by the outbreak?

With travel to most countries still locked down, this seems a good time to take an online trip to see how they fared.

La Rinconada intrigues experts

Despite being recorded as the world’s highest town, the remote mining community of La Rinconada in the Peruvian Andes seemed ill-equipped to fend off the coronavirus.

Plagued by crime, pollution, poor sanitation and diseases among its workers, La Rinconada is said to have two doctors for a population estimated at 30,000. Worst of all, Peru has so far recorded 1.7 million cases and at least 57,000 deaths.

Yet La Rinconada is reported to have escaped relatively lightly, although precise figures are hard to find. While people have been catching coronavirus, they seem much less likely to die from it than in lowland Peru.

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