How to survive on a desert island

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Survive on an island or forest

Surviving in a place far from civilization can be very difficult and even more so if you find yourself lost without knowing what to do. You must be prepared to face any situation whether you have lost yourself on a desert island or a huge forest. Preparation can make a difference to the outcome. This little manual will help you survive and stay healthy anywhere.

Survival Guide

Keep calm

If you find yourself in this situation, the first and foremost thing to remember is to stay calm, if you get stressed, you will not be able to think clearly and prioritize. Relax, the most important thing is that you are still alive and you are capable of doing anything if you put your mind to it.

Assuming that you have just arrived or woke up on an unknown island, your clothes will be wet, so put them in the sun and let them dry, you will not want to catch a cold as soon as the adventure begins.

Inspect the area

Every situation is different and requires different analysis and solutions. Take your time.

Once the nerves of the new situation have been overcome, it is convenient that you inspect the area in which you are, find out what animals there are, if the site is safe, if it can flood, if you have the necessary materials nearby to build a shelter later, etc.

As an advice, do not stay near the coast, in case you go up the way or you cut yourself with a coral, but do not go too far, preferably look for a high place and with good peripheral vision. This will increase your chances of being seen or of you seeing something.

Prioritize your needs

It is clear that once you have calmed down and after inspecting the area, you will have many questions and desire to do things, or on the contrary, you will not know where to start.

Well, in that case, remember the rule of 3. A person goes 3 minutes without oxygen, 3 days without water and 3 weeks without food.

According to the above, the water will go before the food. And before all that, your own safety of course.

In short, your priorities in the proper order are, safety, the Water, the refuge and the food.

Evaluate available resources

For all of the above, you must know what you have, either in nature or in your personal belongings.

Ideally, you would have lost yourself with a knife, with a rope, cables and laces (which you can get from your shoes if you wear them), flint and canvas (or raft). But since nobody is prepared for these situations, you will have to be creative to achieve everything else.

Protect yourself from animals

You should find an area where you can build your shelter soon and that is also a safe area for animals. To do this, look for a wide area, where you can observe what is happening around, if possible where you can build a high shelter. So that the chances of animals or insects preventing you from sleeping are reduced. In addition, it is also very important at this point, to learn to make a fire, more to protect yourself than to cook.

In the event of dangerous animals, use a fire at night to help keep them away.

flint fire

As surely you do not have at hand flint to make fire. Here we will teach you some ways to make fire:

One way to make fire is with dried herbs and leaf litter, all placed in a compact way on top of a fine and dry firewood, with a small groove where the tinder will be placed. Rub with another stick until smoke appears, then go blowing and repeat the process until the first sparks appear.

And although these last two methods are more difficult to carry out if you do not have the firesuitable tools. Exists, the magnifying glass methodWith an optical or camera lens, through the sun direct the rays towards the tinder and hold that position until it ignites.

The strap method it is easier to carry out than the previous one, if we do not have rope or cords, we can use a strip of fabric of firebowour own t-shirt. With a soft wood log, we raise it a little with some stones so that it is slightly inclined. You pass the rope or cloth underneath, surrounding the trunk, and pulling alternately from one end to the other, we are causing the friction that will generate the necessary spark to have fire

As we discussed earlier, building a shelter is necessary, to protect yourself from predators and to find a safe place to return to when you go hunting or inspecting, in this way you can protect yourself from nature, even imagine that a torrential rain falls.

shelter_brocha3Normally in this type of guides it is usually explained how to build a refuge, but it must not be forgotten that it can also be a natural refuge such as a cave.

The first thing that is recommended is that it be a shelter a couple of meters high, to avoid insects or other animals.

Once we have the area, the simplest thing is to build an A-shaped shelter, with two refugegroups of long branches separated by 2-2.5 meters, nail them to the ground and join them at the upper ends so that there is a hole underneath. Cover the sides of branches and leaves. If you have a raft, place it covering the poles to act as insulation.

Traps are another way to secure the area, or placing dry branches that break when something steps on them can be a warning.

Get water

There are several ways to get water, depending on the utensils you have. We will start with the simplest:

  • leisure methodSpray method: it consists of tearing a little fabric and knotting it at the ankles, for this technique you have to walk in the morning, which is when there is still dew. You can then squeeze the piece of cloth and store or drink the spray liquid.
  • Rain harvesting– If there is no natural source of water nearby, you will have to build yourself something to collect rainwater. It is a not very effective method since for this you must wait for DEW WATER DESALINATIONlet it rain and find a way to store that water, either with a container, with an inclined blade that guides the rain into the bowl and even tie a shirt or piece of cloth on a branch and then drain it as in the previous way.
  • Water filter: with a T-shirt, dirt or sand and stones water filteryou can make a filter for dirty water. You won’t completely clean the water, but you can remove most of the impurities. The way to use it is the following, you make the water pass and you place yourself underneath to drink the drops that are falling.
  • Distillation: there are several ways to build a still, although the functionality is the same, here we will explain the most common. A still allows you to obtain water from solar energy.

For the next model we will need a plastic or several large sheets, a container or container, rocks to act as a counterweight and the excavation of a hole.desalination water

At the bottom of the hole we will place the container and cover today with the canvas or sheets, the stones must be placed on top of the canvas to act as a counterweight. In this way you collect water and desalinate it two in one.

There is another method that requires the lighting of a fire and the use of two containers to boil the water and another to store the desalinated water; joined by a piece or sheet that acts as a bridge. When you boil water, do it for at least 3 min.

  • Fruits and coconuts: remember that if you got lost on a desert island, fruits and coconuts have a high percentage of water and vitamins in addition. Coconuts can serve as containers or as tinder (the outer shell).

Get food

Food is necessary and that is why it is important that you investigate the area before occupying to locate the places where there are fruit, roots, berries and coconuts.

As a tip, before continuing, if you are not sure if a fruit or plant is poisonous, break the membrane and rub the inside on a part of your arm, wait 10 to 20 minutes and see if something happens (rash, inflammation …) If nothing happens, chances are that nothing will happen.

Another source of food is insects, although it seems disgusting they have many nutrients.

An original way to fish without a hook is to place large rocks and make a small wall in the shape of a “V” where the peak enters the sea, when the tide rises and falls again, some fish will get caught in your trap and you will get a delicatessen for dinner.


Maybe after a while you don’t want to get out of there, but just in case, we will tell you how to do the best distress signals to be rescued.

One of the most typical signals is the SOS signal, you can form this signal with stones; when large so that it can be seen from the sky, you can also place objects along the entire beach, something that is out of the ordinary it can be used to attract the attention of any nearby ship.

Another good idea is to make the international distress sign, a triangle, for this you can serve 3 fires in the shape of a triangle. After you’ve made a fire, shoot live plants for thick smoke. This will help make you more noticeable and can be seen from further afield. During the night, the fire works well, as a beacon for ships or airplanes.


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