"Hermits in religion" just didn't sound right.
Christian hermits in the past have most often lived in caves, forests, or deserts, but some of them preferred an isolated cell in a monastery or even a city. From what we know from their contribution to our Christian heritage, male hermits were more common than female.
The solitary life is a form of asceticism, wherein the hermit renounces wordly concerns and pleasures in order to come closer to the God. In ascetic hermitism, the hermit seeks solitude for meditation, contemplation, and prayer without the distractions of contact with human society, sex, or the need to maintain socially acceptable standards of cleanliness or dress. The ascetic discipline can also include a simplified diet and/or manual labor as a means of support; for example, the early Christian Desert Fathers often wove baskets to exchange for bread.