Once in a while, who doesn’t wish to escape into the wild? Away from the known and into the unknown? To someplace devoid of crowds or any trace of the modern world. It may seem lonely, but, gradually, one falls in love with the solitude and the wilderness. The numerous Islands of the world promise to give you the ultimate getaway you seek. Be it Daniel Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe or Chuck Noland from Cast Away – none failed to fall in love with the uninhabited feel of an island. No, we are not talking about unexpected circumstances carrying you away to an unknown island. But, a perfectly crafted beach vacation that will rejuvenate you from within.
With crystal clear blue waters, sandy beaches, and subtropical jungles, islands are a trendy destination to visit nowadays. In fact, with a hundred different activities, islands are the most-visited places these days. Your version of paradise may differ, but, the major islands of the world deliver eye candies galore. The beauty of an island might blow you away or just put your mind right in place. Beaches, bays, boulders, cliffs, caves, ruins or rainforests. What you ask, you get. So, if you are in the mood for some blue skies and sunshine, we have got you covered. In today’s post, we have put down a list of islands in the world. Starting from the best to the unexplored to the secret ones. Choose any or many, and your next vacation is set.
List of 25 Best islands in the World
- Maui, Hawaii
- Cumberland Island, USA
- Cayman Islands, British Oversees Territory
- Mallorca, Spain
- Crete, Greece
- Bay Islands, Honduras
- Hvar Islands, Croatia
- Lord Howe Island, Australia
- Moorea, French Polynesia
- Bali, Indonesia
- Ischia, Italy
- Galapagos Island, Ecuador
- Fiji Islands
- Santorini, Greece
- Palawan, Phillipines
- Raja Ampat Islands
- Yaeyama Islands, Japan
- Kauai, Hawaii
- Boracay Islands, Phillipines
- Cebu, Phillipines
- Corfu, Greece
- Phuket, Thailand
- Anguilla, British Oversees Territory
1. Maui, Hawaii
Whether you are a biker or the good old hiker when it comes to the trendiest of islands, Maui wins the show. A celebrity sibling within the Hawaiian-island family, it’s one of the best islands of the world. Since the 1960’s this island has lured ‘explorers’ for it’s healing energy. It’s in the recent few years that even millionaires and Hollywood A-listers go down there for a week-long pampering. You can be the cool dude with your bike hurtling past the rows of eucalyptus or pine. Or just choose to walk down the trails winding through bamboo forests. Have it your way. Maui is a traveller’s delight for sure.
- Places to visit in Maui: Road to Hana, Sunset at Haleakala, Keawakapu Beach
- Best season to visit Maui: From December to March.
- Activities to do in Maui: Snorkelling, Scuba diving, Wind boarding, Paddleboarding, Surfing, Biking and trekking
2. Cumberland Island, USA
Camping is one of the best activities you can do on this island. It’s one of Georgia’s largest barrier islands. Needless to say, Cumberland is one of the major islands of the world. The wilderness and seclusion from the community give this island an otherworldly charm.
Still an undeveloped island, there’s a National Park which protects almost 36,000 acres of the island. The thing is that touring this island requires very little money. You can actually go on a budget vacation to Cumberland Islands. Two best ways on how to enjoy the most on this island – either visit for a day or camp overnight.
- Places to visit in Cumberland: Dungeness Ruins, Lucy Carnegie’s Island, Plum Orchard Mansion
- Best season to visit Cumberland: From December to February/ Mid-March and April.
- Activities to do in Cumberland: Camping, Biking, Stargazing
3. Cayman Islands, British Oversees Territory
One of the major islands of the world, it attracts over 2 million visitors every year. Needless to say, Cayman is mainly for the upper and elite, given its sophisticated rich culture. Explore the island and go towards Bodden Town, East End or Cayman Brac. You would very well understand as to why the island is cosmopolitan. Cayman is definitely one of the most talked about islands of the world. Mainly, it’s an archipelago of three islands, lying 90 miles south of Cuba. An amazing Carribean getaway, it’s a must-visit for both adventure and relaxation-seeking travellers.
- Places to visit in Cayman: Seven Mile Beach, Stingray City, Kittiwake Shipwreck and Artifical Reef.
- Best season to visit Cayman: From February to April
- Activities to do in Cayman: Snorkelling, Scuba diving, Surfing, Swimming
4. Mallorca, Spain
Mallorca or Majorca is one of the most famous islands in the world. A bright personality and classic Mediterranean waters make it one of the best islands of the world for vacations. It’s one of the largest of Spain’s Balearic Islands. Combining an age-old history, culture, and alluring beach lifestyle, Mallorca makes for a perfect summer-destination. This island has some of the most amazing beaches and a dozen picturesque coves to choose from. The Mediterranean waters are aqua-blue and the sandy beaches a golden hue. To add to it, there’s a backdrop of the stunning mountains and hills towering over the bright blue sea.
- Places to visit in Mallorca: Explore Alcudia, Visit the historical town of Palma de Mallorca, Monastery of Valldemossa, Sóller’s Beautiful Seaside Scenery, Port Town of Pollença
- Best season to visit Mallorca: Semanta Santa (Easter Week) / from September to November.
- Activities to do in Mallorca: Water sports, Mountain biking, Take the Hairpin Drive to Sa Calobra & Torrente de Pareis.
5. Crete, Greece
Splendid beaches, ancient treasures and gorgeous landscapes. Sum it up, and you get to visit one of the best islands of the world for vacations. Once in Crete, you would get to experience the most wonderful cuisine and generous spirit. This island gives you the opportunity to travel like a local, share their tradition and explore their dreamy villages. There’s something irrefutably poetic in the way the Cretan landscape unfolds. Sun-kissed beaches in the north to the rugged canyons revealing themselves at the cliff-lined southern coast. One of the largest islands in Greece, Crete is eye candy to any traveller who puts their first step in.
- Places to visit in Crete: Balos Lagoon in Chania, Falarsana Beach, Exotic Elafonissos
- Best season to visit Crete: February to mid-April / September to November
- Activities to do in Crete: Canyon hiking, Scuba diving, Snorkelling, Surfing, Swimming.
Also See: Top 11 beaches in Greece you must visit
6. Bay Islands, Honduras
The three Bay Islands Roatán, Utila and Guanaja are the most important islands of the world. Located between 25km and 50km off the north of Honduras, Bay Islands draws visitors from all around the world. With the second largest barrier reef in the world, snorkelling and scuba diving becomes an even more fun activity. Among the three, Utila is quite low-key. You can find lodging and food at reasonable rates. It’s more of a fun budget-island. The other two, Roatán and Guanaja are comparatively expensive, but, water sports are quite affordable.
- Places to visit in Bay Islands: Bay of Islands Maritime Park, Russell, Pompallier Mission, Paihia
- Best season to visit Bay Islands: December to February
- Activities to do in Bay Islands: Backpacking, Water sports
7. Hvar Islands, Croatia
The second largest Croatian island, Hvar belongs to the central Dalmatian archipelago. Considered as one of the most important islands of the world, Hvar is long, lean with a weird shape of a human reclining on a sunlounger. The sunniest spot in the country, Hvar is the most luxurious island and an amazing beach destination. For a holidaymaker with love for adventure, it’s the perfect dream spot.
- Places to visit in Hvar: Hvar Fortress, Arsenal theatre, Dubokovic garden, Hvar piazza, Trim Stari Grad Plain
- Best season to visit Hvar: From July to September
- Activities to do in Hvar: Water sports, Dine in a deserted village called Humac, Hike east of Hvar town towards Milna, Sample some of Croatia’s best wines or sail the Pakleni islands, Explore the lavender fields
Also See: Top Incredible Romantic Places in Europe
8. Lord Howe Island, Australia
An irregularly crescent-shaped volcanic remnant in the Tasman Sea, Lord Howe is one of the most beautiful islands of the world. Chiselled mountain peaks rising dramatically from crystal blue waters offer an otherworldly view of the islands. A place of extraordinary contrasts, this island is also called as ‘the last paradise’. As you go towards the west coast, you would find a sandy semi-enclosed coral reef lagoon. Teeming with vibrant marine life and rare coral, they are protected as part of the Lord Howe Island Marine Park.
- Places to visit in Lord Howe: Ned’s Beach, Lagoon Beach, Ball’s Pyramid
- Best season to visit Lord Howe: From September to December.
- Activities to do in Lord Howe: Explore the island by bicycle and stroll through the native, Kentia palm and Banyan Tree forests, Snorkelling over pristine coral reefs, Trek up to Mt. Gower, Scuba dive or bird-watch
Also See: Top things to do in Gold Coast Australia
9. Moorea, French Polynesia
Northwest of Tahiti lays Moorea, an island you have never heard of. It’s one of the most beautiful islands of the world. Utterly stunning and surrounded by a bright blue lagoon, it’s a hidden paradise. But, to reach this island involves a whole lot of processes. And it starts with first having to get to Papa’ete in Tahiti.
Post that, travellers then travel to Moorea by a high-speed ferry. From Papa’ete to Moorea, it’s approximately 12 miles. It’s a hue of green and blue with turquoise waters splashing against emerald green cliffs. The island’s stunning beauty can only be viewed better in real life.
- Places to visit in Moorea: Ned’s Beach, Lagoon Beach, Ball’s Pyramid
- Best season to visit Moorea: From December to February
- Activities to do in Moorea: Hike the island’s lush hills, Opt for snorkelling through the coral reefs, Hop on a whale or dolphin, Glorious Sunsets
10. Bali, Indonesia
One of the most popular islands of the world, Bali is more than just a place. An aspiration for many, it’s a tropical state of mind. Almost everything in Bali has got a spiritual meaning. Bali has got a rich and diverse culture which plays out at all levels of life. Dominated by overpowering volcanoes and hillside temples, it’s one of the top islands of the world.
- Places to visit in Bali: Pura Tanah Lot, Mount Batur, Uluwatu Temple, Ubud Forest, Tegallalang and Jatiluwih Rice Terraces in Bali
- Best season to visit Bali: April, May, June and September
- Activities to do in Bali: Visit Ulun Danu Temple, Visit Bali Treetop Adventure Park and have fun, Muck diving in Padang Bai, Strap on a jetpack in Tanjung Benoa
11. Ischia, Italy
A volcanic island on the Tyrrhenian Sea, it’s one of the top islands of the world. Considered by many to be beautiful, it has a coastline of 34 km and covers an area of 46.3 sq km. Almost entirely covered by mountains, the highest peak in Ischia is Mount Epomeo. The calmer south coast offers a view of the languid blend of the cosy harbour and lazy beaches.
- Places to visit in Ischia: Aragonese Castle, Gardens of La Mortella, Villa La Colombaia, Maronti Beach, Bay of Sorgeto
- Best season to visit Ischia: From April to October.
- Activities to do in Ischia: Explore the towns of Ischia (Ischia Porto, Lacco Ameno, Forio), Hit the beaches, especially the Fisherman’s Beach, Trek on Mount Epomeo, Go for a wine tour taste
Also See: 10 Best Places to visit in Italy in 2019
12. Galápagos Islands, Ecuador
An archipelago of volcanic islands, Galápagos is one of the most important islands of the world. Most of the islands have scanty vegetation. SO, don’t expect to stumble upon a pristine tropical paradise. These islands of Ecuador offers wildlife and landscapes. It’s a place where humans don’t attract attention but, all that part is left to flora and fauna. Galápagos is an island which would provoke you to think differently.
- Places to visit in Galápagos: Devil’s Crown (Floreana Islands), Punta Moreno, Elizabeth Bay, Punta Espinosa
- Best season to visit Galápagos: From December to June.
- Activities to do in Galápagos: Snorkelling and diving, Bird-watching, Visit the Charles Darwin Research Station, Visit the Sierra Negra volcano
13. Fiji Islands
One of the most popular islands of the world, Fiji Island is a part of Oceania in the South Pacific. The island is situated about one-third of the way from New Zealand to Hawaii. It consists of an archipelago of 332 islands, among which 110 are inhabited. A product of volcanic mountains and warm tropical waters, the vibrant coral reefs draws tourists to Fiji from all around the world.
- Places to visit in Fiji: Wailoaloa, Denarau, Vanua Levu, Taveuni, Fiji Museum, Suva Municipal Market, Sigatoka Sand Dunes
- Best season to visit Fiji: Throughout the year.
- Activities to do in Fiji: Explore the culture in Nadi, Fly over the Mamanucas, Watch fire-walking in Beqa, Drink Kava on Vanua Levu
A paradise whose islands lie scattered on the Indian Ocean, Seychelles is an archipelago in the ocean. The island has got some of the most spellbinding beaches with luxurious laces of sand. Right from the top, the island looks exquisite when the turquoise waters lap the gorgeous sands. And to add to it are the lush hills, palm trees and the Dali-esque boulders.
- Places to visit in Seychelles: Anse Intendance, Mahé, Anse Lazio, Praslin, Cousine Island, Aride Island, Baie Lazare, Mahé, La Digue Island
- Best season to visit Seychelles: From April to November.
- Activities to do in Seychelles: Rock climbing in Constance Ephelia, Scuba Diving and Snorkeling, Island Hopping, Exploring the Copolia Trail, Find the secret waterfall in Praslin
15. Santorini, Greece
About 200 km southwest of Greece’s mainland lies Santorini, an island in the southern Aegean Sea. It’s the largest island of a small, circular archipelago. Famous for its dramatic views and spectacular sunsets from Oia town, Santorini is a popular tourist destination. In this island, you would find the most fantastic beaches like Perissa and Kamari.
- Places to visit in Santorini: Fira Town, Kamari Beach, Perissa Beach, Pyrgos, Akrotiri – the Venetian Castle, Megalochori – the traditional village
- Best season to visit Santorini: From April to June / September to October.
- Activities to do in Santorini: Walk along the volcano on Nea Kameni, Watch the spectacular sunsets, Explore the wineries of Finikia, Scuba-dive in volcanic waters
16. Palawan, Philippines
Palawan is one of over 7000 islands which make up the Philippine archipelago. A slice of heaven on earth, the island stretch between Mindoro in the northeast and Borneo in the southwest. The water around it defines the islands of Palawan. Vast seascapes with terrestrial and aquatic wildlife make this island a sure charmer.
- Places to visit in Palawan: El Nido, Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park, Puerto Princesa, Coron and Calamian Islands, Linapacan Islands, San Vicente Long Beach
- Best season to visit Palawan: From mid-June to September
- Activities to do in Palawan: Explore Taytay, Go wreck diving, snorkelling and island hopping in Coron and Calamian, Trek to the waterfalls in Puerto Princesa, Island hop in Honda Bay, Explore rock adventures in Ugong
17. Raja Ampat Islands
Comprising of more than 1500 islands just off Sorong, Raja Ampat is a sparsely populated island. The archipelago is a part of the Coral, and it contains the richest biodiversity on earth. Jungle-covered island, fine white sand beaches and spooky caves. Pretty much sums up the description.
Places to visit in Raja Ampat: Pianemo, Arborek Village, Batanta Island Waterfall, Pasir Timbul
Best season to visit Raja Ampat: From October to April
Activities to do in Raja Ampat: Watch the gorgeous sunsets and sunrise, Hike to Pianemo for a spectacular view, Walk on a floating sand island, Feed the Fish at Sawinggrai
18. Yaeyama Islands, Japan
These islands are situated on the most southwestern part of Japan. It’s quite close to Taiwan and even Batanese of the Philippines. Yaeyama belongs to the tropical rainforest climate. The island is home to numerous species of subtropical and tropical plants and mangrove forests. Vibrant coral reefs prove to be ideal places for dolphins, turtles and other marine life.
- Places to visit in Yaeyama: Taketomi Island, Kohama Island, Hateruma Island, Yonaguni Island
- Best season to visit Yaeyama: From March to October (except in May)
- Activities to do in Yaeyama: Day trip from Ishigaki to Taketomi Island, Maryudo Falls adventure, Irimote Island Kayaking, Mangrove forest tour, Snorkelling
19. Kauai, Hawaii
Geologically, Kauai is the oldest of all Hawaiian Islands. It’s the fourth largest of these islands and the 21st largest island in the United States. Known as the “Garden Isle”, the breathtaking beauty of Kauai is what draws tourists to this island. The island is identified by it’s lush, rich lands, vast tropical rainforests, stunning beaches and mountainscapes.
- Places to visit in Kauai: Na Pali Coast State Park, Koke’s State Park, Kauai’s best beaches, Polihale State Park
- Best season to visit Kauai: September and November or from April to June
- Activities to do in Kauai: Hop in a canoe and paddle up the Wailua River, Sail across the Na Pali Coast, Visit Waimea Canyon, Feast your eyes on Opaeka‘a Falls, Kayaking, Snorkeling, Fishing and Swimming
20. Boracay Islands, Philippines
One of the crowd-pleasing islands of the Philippines with its vibrant beaches, this tiny drop is a top tourist draw. The centre of the island is its the main attraction with a dreamy White Beach. A 4 km postcard-perfect stretch of sand and sea. The sand is lined on the other side with the hippest of places: restaurants, hotels, bars and dive shops.
- Places to visit in Boracay: White Beach, Puka Shell Beach, Diniwid Beach, Baling Hai Beach
- Best season to visit Boracay: December to May.
- Activities to do in Boracay: Island and beach hopping boat tour with snorkelling, Scuba Diving
Kiteboarding, Helicopter beach tour, Kite Surf on Bulabog Beach, Parasailing
21. Cebu, Philippines
Yet another crowd-pulling gem of Philippines, Cebu is the most densely populated island there. Considered as the most prosperous regions in the country, the tourist numbers has shot up off late. The prime attractions of this island are its white beaches and spectacular diving. And the Cebu city could give any other cosmopolitan city a run for its money. Lively bars, emerging eating joints and burgeoning retail appeal.
Places to visit in Cebu: Sirao Flower Garden, Pescador Island, Osmena Park, 10,000 roses of Cebu, Temple of Leah, Magellan’s Cross, Casino Peak, Dalaguete
Best season to visit Cebu: November to March.
Activities to do in Cebu: Dive with whale sharks, Visit the 1730 Jesuit House, Shop at SM Mall Cebu, Swim in the Inambakan Waterfalls
Also See: 8 Best honeymoon destination in Asia
22. Corfu, Greece
Corfu or Kerkyra is one of the most beautiful islands in the world. Not to mention, it’s essential as well. Unmatched in natural beauty, this island attracts lakhs of visitors every year with dozens of sightseeing places. The roads that take you to the island are in excellent condition. Corfu has a very well developed road network.
- Places to visit in Corfu: The Achilleion Palace, Mon Repos, Kanoni and Pontikonisi, Angelokastro, Vidos Island
- Best season to visit Corfu: April to May / September to November
- Activities to do in Corfu: Day trip to Paxos and Antipaxos, Explore Corfu town, Renting an independent boat and exploring the sea, Going on an Olive Oil tour and tasting, Visiting an ancient monastery
Also See: 25 Amazing things to do in Greece
23. Phuket, Thailand
Jade-hued waves and relaxed beaches. Thailand’s largest island is so diverse that you might want to stay back forever. Phuket lies at the west coast of the country in the Andaman Sea. The most unique element about this island is its beaches. Each of them is different and worth a visit. Apart from the beaches, Phuket also boasts of a rich cultural heritage and welcomes every traveller to taste the same.
- Places to visit in Phuket: Nai Harn Beach, Kata Noi Beach, Surin Beach, Phuket Elephant Sanctuary, Phang Nga Bay
- Best season to visit Corfu: November to February
- Activities to do in Phuket: Take a Tour of The Chalong Bay Rum Distillery, See the Phuket Big Buddha, Hike to Karon viewpoint, Take a trip to Wat Chalong, Take the Phi Phi Island Day trip
Also See: How to travel cheap in Thailand
24. Anguilla, British Overseas Territory
As told, there are islands, there are extraordinary islands, and then there’s Anguilla. A Caribbean paradise, Anguilla is tranquillity wrapped in blue. This island has everything a traveller needs from a Caribbean island. Jade waters, white sand beaches and a necklace of lined palm trees as far you can see. The slow and laid-back atmosphere is what the tourists prefer to enjoy when in Anguilla.
- Places to visit in Anguilla: Meads Bay, Rendezvous Bay, Shoal Bay, Scrub Island, Scilly Cay, Blowing Point, The Valley
- Best season to visit Anguilla: May to August
- Activities to do in Anguilla: Explore the 33 beaches of Anguilla, Watch the sunsets, Try out some local street food at Ken’s BBQ, Sail with Traditional Sailing, Kitesurfing, Kayaking
A beautiful blend of luxury, stunning white beaches and amazing underwater world. Maldives is surely one of the best islands of the world. The island is home to some of the best beaches you would find. Almost every island of the country’s 1200 islands has one beach which is unique. It’s an obvious choice for a true holiday experience.
- Places to visit in Maldives: Como Cocoa Island, Baros Island, Male, Sun Island, Banana Reef
- Best season to visit Maldives: November to April
- Activities to do in Maldives: Snorkelling, Fun Tubing, Parasailing, Diving, Dolphin Spotting
Islands are a special destination if you are looking out for some offbeat travel. Travelling to an island can be pretty unpredictable. It can either give you a luxurious holiday or take you back in time when life was much more peaceful. Whatever you choose, an island visit surely does provide you with the best travel experiences of all. And, our world does have some of the best islands, some explored while there are other hidden ones as well. Waiting to be discovered!