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The World’s 10 Best Vacation Islands

posted in: World  |  posted by: Jennifer Gregory on July 6, 2008  |  70 Comments

We’ve all heard the ultimate wish, uttered under breaths in the midst of a strenuous work day or after a tedious task. “I wish I was on an island.” Islands are the ultimate destination for fun, sun, and plain old relaxation. There’s no reason why your next vacation destination can’t be an island, and there are dozens of choices all over the world. Here you’ll find just a few of our favorites!

1. Bali


Located in the Asian Pacific, the island of Bali is an exotic oriental destination in Indonesia. It is here that you will find yourself immersed in authentic Indonesian culture, dance, and food. The level of customer service on the island of Bali is astounding and you’ll never feel out of place as the locals bend over backward to help you get acclimatised to the atmosphere. Relax on the beach by day, explore the bustling nightlife, and then find comfort in some of the world’s finest villas and hotels. Experience ultimate relaxation while enjoying the authentic Indonesian spirit and drinking in the fantastic scenery. You won’t want to go home.

2. Boracay


Also located in the Asian Pacific is the island of Boracay in the Philippines. Arguably one of the most breathtakingly beautiful places in the world, Boracay is an incredibly popular tourist destination. The island is the perfect destination for both those seeking relaxation and those in search of adventure. The island boasts beautiful climbing, hiking, biking, and horseback riding trails as well as amazing locations for snorkeling, scuba diving, and jet skiing. The White Beach is more commercial, home to dozens of restaurants, spa services, and sun bathers. The Bulabog Beach is for more active guests interested in windsurfing and other water sports.

Find discounted Boracay beach resorts

3. Bora Bora

Bora Bora

In the Australian Pacific you’ll find the island of Bora Bora in French Polynesia. The island was once used as a strategic landing point for the United States Military but was home to hundreds of soldiers who decided to return, or just stay, after the war was over. Now known as a hot destination for tourists, residents of Bora Bora are dedicated to exposing visitors to authentic Polynesian culture. It’s your choice – stay in a beautiful hotel or camp in the great outdoors. Go fishing in the tropical waters or spend the day sunbathing on a sandy beach!

4. Maui


Maui, the second largest island in Hawaii, is known not only for its incredible beauty but also for welcoming both romantic couples and families with open arms. Relax on your own or consider taking advantage of a healing massage, often given right on the beach. The beautiful weather and amazing waters make Maui an optimal destination for surfers. Honeymooning couples will enjoy evening walks on the beach and private Jacuzzi’s in their hotel rooms while families with children will find hula lessons and bamboo fishing trips an excellent way to spend the day.

5. Anguilla


In the heart of the northern Caribbean you’ll discover the tiny island of Anguilla. Currently under British control, Anguilla is a melting pot of cultures blended with the beauty of the beaches and landscape of the island itself. The locals do everything possible to accommodate tourists while at the same time holding dearly to their own cultural standards. You’ll stop by for a relaxing vacation but you’ll leave treasuring and appreciating the island’s rich heritage.

6. Jamaica

JamaicaLast minute Jamaica hotel deals

A perfect climate, amazing tropical plants and landscapes, sandy white beaches, and crystal clear blue waters – what more can you ask from an island vacation destination. The island is affordable for anyone as you can choose to camp or stay in a lavish hotel. Spend some time on the beach, experience true Reggae, party with the locals, or hike the Blue Mountains. There’s something for everyone in Jamaica.

7. The Seychelles


Situated in the Indian Ocean is a cluster of 115 islands known as The Seychelles. The islands are old, but are largely undeveloped, making them a perfect destination for someone who wants to visit an island (or group of islands!) that hasn’t been taken over by commercial resorts. Relax on the white beaches under a shady palm tree, or explore the marine life by taking a dive in the coral reefs. Better yet, each of the 115 islands is easily accessible, so you’re free to explore (though we recommend finding a guide so you don’t end up lost)!

8. The Island of Hvar


The Island of Hvar can be found in the Mediterranean Sea amongst a myriad of other islands. The island is situated along the Croatian Dalmation Coast and is full of history. It takes a bit of travel time to arrive at the Island of Hvar, but the scenery, culture, food, and history makes the trip well worth the effort.

9. Galapagos Island

Galapagos Islands

The South American Galapagos Island is well loved by those interested in nature and botany. The group of islands is home to more than a dozen islands, and hundreds of amazing animal species, including iguana, hawks, penguins, sea lions, and turtles. While the islands are protected as a national park, they are constantly plagued by littering and illegal fishing activities which threaten to damage the plants and animals that call the Galapagos home. If you should visit, please take care and treasure one of the most amazing gifts nature has given the planet.

10. Aruba


Aruba, found off the coast of Venezuela, is yet another amazing destination for individuals, couples, and families alike. Choose to stay in a hotel or, if you’re independent enough, simply rent a local villa for a week or an extended period of time. Everyone will enjoy the beautiful white beaches, blue waters, relaxed fishing trips, or adventurous water sports. The island is home to some of nature’s most beautiful art projects – explore the landscape and enjoy.

You are guaranteed an amazing, educational, and relaxing vacation regardless of which island you choose to visit. All you have to do now is make your reservation and pack your bags.

Photo Credits: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10

Responses to this Article

70 Responses to “The World’s 10 Best Vacation Islands”

  1. Russell Ri says on

    Boracay is definitely a must in every travellers list of places to go.

    Be it for relaxation, adventure or night life, it has something for everyone.


  2. Thai Hotel Expert says on

    Bali? I went there a few years ago with my bf but I have to say it’s not that good. The beaches aren’t that clean hmmm food was ok ..service was great but definitely not in my top 10 list.

  3. says on

    Glad to see Boracay ranking on 2 :) Yes … White Beach is great and you can also find many affordable accomodations at Station 3 area !

  4. Mitz says on

    I’m really glad to see Boracay on the list! If you find yourself there, it would also be good to visit surrounding islands to maximize your visit to the Philippines. Cebu and Palawan are great locations too.

  5. Eduardo says on

    Interesting sense of humor but I like it!

  6. Michael says on

    Everyone I?ve spoken to who has visited Jamaica say the begging is very bad and often becomes aggressive. Nobody would return there for a vacation.

  7. Chris says on

    a small mark at the time of my passage on your very beautiful blog!
    thanks for making us share your moments
    you have a translation of my English space!
    cordially from France
    ?..? ???)) -:?:-
    ?.?? .????))
    ((??.?? ..?? -:?:-
    -:?:- ((??.??* ~ Chris ~ -:?:-

  8. Tony Cooke says on

    I`ve worked in both Jamaica and El Salvador (during the `troubles`) – felt a LOT safer in El Salvador!


  9. Tony Cooke says on

    In Bali it depends very much where you go! For example, Kuta Beach (where the bombings took place) is full of pot-bellied, hairy-armed, beer-swilling Australians (and the men are as bad!)


  10. Vera says on

    Oh yes, go Boracay!

  11. Tom says on

    Nice top ten,
    Though there are a few islands that i miss in this ranking
    Borneo, Langkawi and the Maladives. !

  12. The Fitness Diva says on

    OMG, those pics are absolutely incredible! Definitely makes you want to be there! :)

  13. Clifford says on

    Very nice….

  14. Jet says on

    Bali…tourist area beaches weren’t very clean, lots of hawkers that could be quite overwhelming, food ok…look behind the tourist veneer and you’ll see that only those in the tourism business have a reasonable standard of living, the rest are mainly dirt poor. But the Balinese in general are friendly and kind-hearted, a huge shame that their beautiful island is exploited by western tourists.

  15. n0ne says on

    Hvar is not an island, it is a city with 3 or 4 very small islands about a mile into the sea facing it. Beautifull medieval city but there’s no beaches there.
    Good bars.

    I’d replace that by the Mljet island & national park about 3 or 4 hours by boat from Dubrovnik ; next to no tourists, amazing forests, amazing salt lakes, amazing 10m long little beaches with amazing sealife.

    A place of peace & harmony.

  16. Ivo says on

    Have been to Hvar, Croatia, really great place. Hope goin on the mentioned above sooner or later :)

    Great list anyways !

  17. Carrie says on

    I would most definitely recommend Bonaire over Aruba if you’re going to the Dutch Antilles–not nearly as built up, way less crowded, cheaper, and even more beautiful.

  18. Beverly says on

    These islands are beautiful and anyone would be perfect for a vacation!

  19. bob says on

    Hvar is in the Adriatic.

  20. Ricky says on

    if you go to Bali, try dreamland beach. i give 11 out of 10 scale.

  21. azorean says on

    You forgot to post Azores!

  22. nemo says on

    you forgot my country: Mauritius – Island in the Indian Ocean

  23. ebru says on

    one best world’s island marmara adas?, Turkiye

  24. Eve says on

    omg! u left out the maldives!

  25. Scott says on

    I kept on looking to see how many islands I had been to. Great list. Photos were awesome, yet I believe there are better photos for Maui.

  26. jaden says on

    Wow a beautiful vacation island!! i love it!!thumb up!!

  27. Peter says on

    Nice pictures! These pictures are really awesome. The island of Boracay is looking very nice.

  28. Asia Flights says on

    These island vacation spots look incredible! Bali and Bora Bora look amazing!

  29. London78 says on

    I really like you site – you have chosen some of the most beautiful spots in the world! I am very happy to see Boracay since it is very often overlooked and not well known in North America.

  30. Tom says on

    All are beauty full islands. But there is more to beauty. Nice people, few tourists and relaxed surroundings make all the difference to me. My favourite till so fare is Langkawi, Malaysia. Excluding Borneo, which in my opinion is not an island. Otherwise,the ultimate number 1!

  31. Lee says on

    I would have liked to seen Ibiza in that list! Still one of the best party Islands in the world

  32. Anguilla says on

    Anguilla in the Caribbean offers an exotic trip of a life time with different cultures on every island and the chance to enjoy all that our unspoiled world has to offer

  33. coach sydney says on

    looks so beautiful, I would love the opportunity to go there one day!

  34. Melissa says on

    Looks beautiful!!!
    Playa del Carmen could be one. Or Cozumel.

    These one, are touristic beaches. Excelent environment,
    Weather, everything!!

    You can stay at Grupo Mayan Resorts in The Riviera Maya
    Read a lot of travel vacation guides….

  35. Ismelina says on

    Bali’s sands are not as pristine white and powdery as Boracay’s. The # 1 ranking probably owes to the fact that there are more well known accommodations in Bali than in Boracay, but that’s about to change soon.

    Nonetheless, glad to see my one of my country’s pride and joy sitting comfortably at #2!

  36. Kris@Apex Professionals Services LLC says on

    Ok.. now I need a vacationl. Boracay is looking mighty nice. Never heard of it before I read this. Think its going on my list for places to travel to next year.

  37. Jim@seychelles resort says on

    thanks for the post.

  38. Rochelle Currie says on

    so hard to just choose one of these places but never go to Aruba because it is sooo close to venezuala and they are in the middle of a war or something horrible

  39. bundyrum says on

    Boracay is overated 2 many tourists prooly over 1,000 when i was there,,i live a lot in Bali but Lombok is better for sandy beaches.any black is from volcainoes….go to Philippines..look around and Batayan island off Cebu.cheers Bundy.

  40. Tiffany says on

    Nice photos. But I think Maldives should definitely be on this list!

  41. James h says on

    BORACAY is PARADISE on Earth…
    Not only is it so beautiful, the atmosphere, restaurants and especially nightlife is just out of a dream…

    I have been everywhere in the World, nothing is like it…

  42. dita says on

    I’m proud to be Indonesian.

  43. Loremi says on

    I was in Croatia 2008 and I really love the place. Hvar is a great place to go to when you visit Croatia. You may want to go boating to really appreciate the islands.

  44. Sumedha says on

    Hey, the info is great! I feel as if i just visited all the places myself. I wish I could travel at the speed of thought….

  45. Maui Beach Home Rentals says on

    I would say that Maui, Hawaii is a pretty nice place for family travel especially with kids. I agree Aruba is pretty cool but with small kids Maui is perfect.
    Happy Travels!

  46. Adha19 says on

    Proud to be Indonesian !!!!

  47. healthy society says on

    I love Baly very much. There is great place for vacation

  48. juan enrico says on

    as usual bali is still the best….what ever all these people say bout it but there is no doubt that this place still #1..if you guys travel around indonesia n have a look that we still have thousands n thousands of our island that even more beautiful..if you look only for the beaches well we have them …more powdery sandy beaches, if you look for the accomodation (remember that the hotels n spas in bali are rated the best in the world too), well we have them..if you look for nite life, well we absolutely have them.. for alternative option you all can try the island close by sumtimes..island of lombok..n you will forget to go back home…a lots of foreigner live n make a bussines there..for out side of indonesia, i like crotia…its beatiful…stunning..amazing..i’ve been there..n i luv it…

  49. Kirsten Larrivee says on

    Thanks a lot you regarding your ultimate advice

  50. Alex says on

    Maui definately belongs in the top five. Kuaui should also be there.

  51. Howard Roark says on

    Great list. Been to couple of places mentioned above and they were exquisite.

  52. Maui Vacation Rentals says on

    What beautiful pictures. The white, sandy beaches can make anyone ready for a vacation!

  53. FlatBushPretty says on

    Jamaica is awesome. The food, parties and people are great. Montego Bay, Ocho Rios and Negril are the tourist areas. If you go to the bad areas which all islands have bad areas you will feel overwhelmed. The resorts are sweet as well and the beahces are nice and clean. I have been to many island and Jamaica is the only island I really can say I enjoyed every single day that I was there. Highly recommend anyone to visit that has not done so yet.

  54. Timmy says on

    Go to Aruba, come up missing and never be found again.

  55. Boracay Hotels says on

    Wow lovely photos. One of them is boracay. There a good atmosphere there, mostly at nightlife.

    Tanya Gemarin

  56. BRITNEY says on

    Jamaica is really cute and i saw chris brown at their sun fest it was the bomb and i saw him and rihanna at their hilton hotel and got pics with them and hung with them the entire day ccccccccccccccccccooooooooooooolllllllll

  57. BRITNEY says on

    jamaica ccooolll met chris brown and rihanna there ps rihanna is way tooo cute for chris brown

  58. high eq people says on

    Valuable information and excellent design and style you got here! I would just like to thank you for sharing your thoughts and also time in the stuff you post!! Thumbs up

  59. ANGELIQUE says on


  60. anne says on

    i love snorkeling in Bali! the sea is so beautiful, colorful coral and shells, and filled with various kinds of fish!
    i agree, it depends very much where you go :D

  61. Joe Sun says on

    You just missed the island of Taiwan(Formosa).

    Joe Sun

  62. Pacqman says on

    I agree for the #1. Bali island is amazing. great place for a long vacation. Bali has many beaches, Compare to Boracay, bali is better. many more white sand beaches in bali and even smoother than the sand in Boracay, and also fine as talcum powder (maganda talaga parang Paradise). there’s beaches for crowded people, and there’s quite like a private beach.. in Boracay 2 days vacation is enough, because if stay more than 2 days in Bora will be bored. in Bali besides enjoying the beach, can also enjoy the festival of Balinese culture. and also the Hindu Festival. In case of nightlife, bali nightlife also better, clubs in Bali more exclusive. I just want to share .. thanks, salamat.

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