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10 Safest Places During Martial Law (During martial law, the constitution, your civil rights, and any other existing laws may be suspended, so do what you think is necessary to...

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Imagine a very likely scenario, of civil order collapsing and a martial law being imposed over the entire nation. As a survivalist, you cherish your personal freedom. Therefore, you should be concerned regarding what the safest place during martial law is.

In this article, I will list the safest places during martial law, as well as the best spots to hide your survival supplies. But first, a few words about martial law and what it means. Let us begin, shall we?

Table of Contents

1. What Is Martial Law?

2. Top 10 Safest Places During Martial Law

What Is Martial Law?

Martial law takes place when a government suspend everyday civil laws and rights. In some instances, a military is the one that imposes its control over the civilians. Martial law is declared during nation-wide or region-wide emergencies, such as war, natural disasters, civil unrest, and so forth.

According to the established U.S. legislations, a country-wide martial law can be declared by either the Congress or the President. In addition, any State Governor can declare martial law in their state. Similar laws can apply to almost any country, with varying levels of strictness of the said law.

Martial law is not a rare phenomenon by far. In the USA alone it was declared almost 70 times, while only 2 of these times are related to a war against a foreign nation. A large portion of these instances is, in fact, related to riots, civil unrest, or even labor disputes.

The situation can be even more harrowing outside the United States, especially in the countries where democracy and personal freedom are completely unheard of.

As you understand by now, martial law, even if it’s seemingly necessary, can hinder your rights, privacy, and independence. We will now take a look at what measures can be taken during martial law. Please keep in mind that I do not support physically resisting governmental or military forces.

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Top 10 Safest Places During Martial Law

1. An Off-Grid Cabin or Tiny House


A small and remote house is the ideal location during martial law. This could be a cabin, a tiny house, or some sort of a secret retreat. It should be off the grid for two reasons:

  • An off-the-grid house does not depend on external power sources, such as the national powerlines. You can produce your own energy by using solar panels, hydropower, or wind power. You can read more about these natural electricity sources from the linked articles. If you produce your own electricity independently, no one can control you by turning the power off.
  • Every house and apartment usually have an address. Eventually this makes the things easier for the military and the government, as they go from door to door, checking on everyone. An off-grid house does not need to have an official address. You can remain almost anonymous and disappear off the grid, as you wait out whatever caused the martial law to be deployed.

2. A Bunker


A classic location: your bug out shelter or any other bunker can definitely function as a safe haven. You will need to ensure that it’s appropriate stocked with such supplies and items as:

  • Water
  • Canned and unperishable food
  • Fuel for the generator. Alternatively, you can use a portable power station, it’s much more reliable and quieter.
  • Spare clothes
  • Radio
  • Blankets
  • First aid kit 
  • Self-defense weapons
  • Flashlights

Once you have the place prepared, never disclose its location to anyone outside your small group. If the martial law is imposed, choose the most inconspicuous route to get to your bunker. Listen to the radio to stay updated when the things have cooled down and you can go back home. You will need a radio that does not require batteries and can last for a long time. I recommend getting American Red Cross Emergency Radio. It can be powered by hand crank or solar panel. This radio also includes a smart phone charger, flashlight, flashing beacon, and an alarm clock.

3. Away From Most of the Civilization


Unlike the specific places on this list, this one is a general recommendation. Staying away from other people and the cities could be the solution you’re looking for. As history proved time and time again, it’s not just the military or the invading forces that you should be concerned about. It’s also the people next door.

When the supplies run low, the unprepared people will start looting their neighbors. The civilized ones will quickly become uncivilized. The urban streets will be unsafe, with riots and looting everywhere. It’s understandable on some level, since everyone wants to survive. But it’s also a good reason to look for a shelter elsewhere, as far from the urban centers as possible.

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4. Your Own House


That’s right, your house can be more than enough during the martial law period. Think about it, you already have all the supplies and comfort, why look for it in remote places? As long as you do not confront the authorities, you might do just fine by staying in your house.

The trick to staying home is laying low. Continue your life as if nothing happened. This might go against your beliefs, but your survival should be the priority. Stock your house with extra food and water, and simply behave “normally”. Going outside could be dangerous because of two major reasons: the military presence, and whatever disaster or disorder that forced the military presence to appear. Staying home could be the wisest thing to do.

5. An Abandoned Location


If you don’t have a bunker, tiny house or cabin, any abandoned building might do. You still need to ensure that its location is as removed as possible from the military and governmental presence. If it’s outside the city, then it’s even better. This can be an abandoned factory, farm, barn, warehouse, and so forth.

Scout this location before deciding whether or not this will be your shelter. Ensure that it’s not visited by other people throughout the day. Check its general state and structure. Rotting or infested buildings are too unsafe to stay in.

Once you decide on a building, stash essential supplies there. This way, whenever you need to relocate, the supplies will already be there, waiting for you.

6. The Mountains


The mountains are a very secluded and inaccessible location. No law representative will bother climbing a cliff just to reprimand you for leaving the city.

Retreating to the mountains can also feel like going back to the roots, to your true self. While the martial law limits you as individual, the mountains free you. The air is fresh up there, and no law is enforced on you.

Of course, you need to be completely prepared to spend some time in that challenging environment, especially during the winter. The supplies might get very low and scarce. The weather makes it even more difficult, and you need to know how to treat frost injuries.

7. Any Prepper Community


Why facing a country-wide crisis alone, when you can rely on a large group of like-minded preppers, survivalists and off-gridders? Sometimes a group of people has better chances of survival, especially during a large crisis.

As a group or community, you can pool your resources together. Different people can have different skills that are useful to others. One is a medic, while another one is a hunter or an experienced cook. Together, your skills and expertise complement each other and strengthen your community.

While prepper communities are not wildly advertised, I do have a list of known off-grid communities. If some of them are nearby, consider joining them during trying times.

8. A Neighboring Country


While seemingly abandoning your country may look like an unpatriotic action, it’s actually quite the opposite. When the government imposes its regime and strips away basic human rights, the most patriotic action can be crossing the border into a more “relaxed” country. There, you can recuperate, regroup, and then return when the circumstances allow it.

For example, if you live in the United States and the martial law is declared, you can relocate to Mexico, Canada, or a nearby island country or territory. The government won’t pursue you there, since they will probably have much bigger objectives on their hands.

Make sure you’re familiar enough with the local language and customs. They will come handy should you seek a temporary employment and a place to stay.

Keep in mind that in some cases, you might need to leave for a much farther country, such as the safest country in case of nuclear war.

9. The Armed Forces


This might be a surprising suggestion, but the military is probably the most secure and well-supplied environment to be in. I’m not encouraging you to enlist just for the sake of surviving a particular scenario. I’m just saying that if you’re already in the military, or a civilian working at a military base, then you don’t have to hide elsewhere during the martial law.

The military’s obvious advantage is that it received supplies and working equipment before the rest of the population. Also, the military bases are well-fortified and guarded. The downsize, of course, is that during an international conflict or a civil war, the bases are the first ones to be attacked.

10. The Great Outdoors


Mountains and cabins are specific places in the wild, where you can stay safe during the martial law. But they are not the only ones. In fact, the entire wilderness is at your disposal. In almost every country, the inhabited areas are much smaller in comparison to the uninhabited outdoors. You can literally pitch a tent in the woods and weather the national crisis.

Naturally, this requires a few skills, which are listed in my article on basic survival skills. In addition, you will need a lot of knowledge and information on such topics as making tools, identifying plants, foraging, hunting, fishing, building a shelter, defending against animals, and so on.

Final Thoughts

The purpose of this article is to provide you with ideas of what can happen when authorities declare martial law. When they do declare martial law, I am in no way telling you that you should misbehave and ignore civil law, civil authority, the federal government, the president, or a military commander.

Ignoring existing laws could cause a person to end up in a federal court, or in military tribunals that go through a military court that could be on almost any military base.


During martial law, the constitution (in America), your civil rights, and any other existing laws may be suspended, so do what you think is necessary to retain some sort of justice and control over your own life and safety.

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