Without a doubt you need people around. It's one of those questions you cannot fully answer until you are in a situation when there are no people you know around you at all excpet for your partner for example.
I've never been a very social person, I thought having friends is nice but not really necessary until I moved to different country with different culture and language.
After two years of not having anyone around I could potentially call and have a little chat, I felt like a fish without water. I was going crazy.
Luckily when I moved to new location and started actively looking for new friends, it all changed. Now I feel back like at home, with a group of people I can hang out with whenever I want. The difference is that now I value them a lot - I know how it is when it's gone.