If someone asked me to name my top 5 most memorable holiday destinations, the entire list would consist of islands. There's something about island hopping that makes you feel like you're really on an adventure. Maybe it’s the enveloping coastline that wraps around a mini-eco system, the ocean breeze that sweeps in, the combination of beaches and forests, or maybe it's the secluded atmosphere that does the trick. But not all islands are the same (some aren't that great, actually), so here's my top 5 for the world's best islands for a relaxing escape:
If you're talking scenic beauty and the diversity of the landscape, there are few islands that can compete with Bali. Fantasy world beaches, volcanic mountains covered in lush greenery, Sumatran elephants, and amazingly majestic pagodas give this heavenly Indonesian island a unique look that is hard to forget. The best time to visit is between the months of April and October, if you intend to stay dry, as the rest of the year is considered the wet season. However, the climate varies between 80 and 95 degrees year-round, so if you don't mind the precipitation you can find cheaper flights during the wet season. I packed my Salsa Rimowa suitcase full of rainwear and had a great 3-week holiday in Bali during the off season for a fraction of what I would've paid had I gone in mid-April.
2. Bora Bora
Contrary to the phonics of the name, Bora Bora, is anything but boring. When you're approaching the island, either via plane or boat, it literally looks like you're traveling back in time to the land of the dinosaurs. This exotic island in the Southern Pacific is home to some of the world's most relaxing beaches lined with thatched-roof huts that sit suspended over the turquoise clear waters below. White sand beaches combine with jungles and mountains to make this place a must see.
Of all the islands in the Mediterranean, I'd have to say that Santorini is my favourite by far. The people here have done an amazing job of preserving their culture and architecture for thousands of years, and the local Greek cuisine is on par with the best food ever. Red sand beaches, stunning views of the Aegean Sea, and the ancient remains of Akrotiri and Thira make this place a popular honeymoon destination.
If you're thinking of taking a trip to Hawaii, the island of Maui would be your best bet for relaxation without complete isolation. Unlike Lanai, there are enough accommodations scattered about to keep you comfortable, yet it's not as busy as Oahu. Snorkelling, nature tours, and walks on the beach in Maui are some of the most relaxing and enjoyable things you can do on this planet.
5. St. Kitts
The twin islands of Nevis and St. Kitts in the Caribbean are some of the most luxurious tourist destinations on Earth. Nevis is the more relaxed of the two, while St. Kitts is home to more hospitality and entertainment venues like hotels and restaurants. It's nice to have quick access to the hustle and bustle of St. Kitts while still being secluded enough to relax on Nevis.