If your idea of an island holiday involves 24-hour pool-side service, umbrellas in fruity mixed drinks and sandy, warm water beaches, you should reconsider descending on Ascension Island. This volcanic island lies in the South Atlantic between South America and Africa, and while romantic in theory - remote, far from humanity, untouched by tourism - it's a dry, barren patch of land with few facilities for visitors.

Though used mostly as a military outpost for the Brits, the island is also home to the European Space Agency's Ariane 5 tracking station and what's been described as the world's worst golf course. Golfers don't putt on the green, they putt on volcanic ash and basalt lava flows. The island is also notable as a nesting ground for the green sea turtle, which come ashore from December to June to lay their eggs. Hatching peaks between March and June, and the island's conservation department leads turtle tours. Visiting the island requires an entry permit at least 28 days in advance, and travellers can either fly from the UK on a Royal Air Force-commissioned aircraft, or arrive by sea from Cape Town.

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