The World’s Most Beautiful Islands: Escape to Paradise | Ponant Magazine
A short, subjective (but tried and tested) guide to the planet’s most beautiful islands.


The time has come to cross seas and oceans to seek out some of the world’s most stunning treasures! Five heavenly, spellbinding and fascinating islands – something to give you some ideas for trips to take on your next holiday.


1.
Siargao in the Philippines

Surf’s up on Siargao ! This island and its crystal-clear lagoons are perfect for diving, but this is also a dream destination for experienced surfers. To ride some of the biggest waves in the region, you simply have to head to Cloud 9.

Siargao also has the Philippine’s largest mangrove reserve. This is a perfect spot to take a canoe trip and discover the island’s hidden gems, such as Tak Tak waterfall or Sugba lagoon, with its hypnotic emerald waters. Say goodbye to stress with a stroll on the immaculate white sands of this divine island. Siargao’s appeal lies chiefly in the fact that it is unsullied by crowds of tourists, as well as in its natural pools , such as Magpupungko, its dreamy islands and lagoons.

2.
Santorini in Greece

Blue churches?, Did you say blue churches? Santorini , the largest island of the small Santorini or Thera archipelago is the pearl of the Cyclades, which lies to the south of Greece . The island which was shaped by an underwater volcano, charms visitors with its picturesque blue and white buildings set against the horizon.

Another stunning sight on the island: the amazing expanses of black sand at Red Beach, White Beach and Black Beach which are well worth a trip. Contrasted with the redness of volcanic rocks and the intense blue of the sea, these beaches are an unforgettable sight.

3.
The Kei Islands in Indonesia

Home to possibly the world’s most beautiful beaches, known as the Kei Islands, the Evav Islands or Pulau-Pulau Kei in Indonesian, these magnificent islands including Kai Dulah, Kai Besar and Kei Kecil, form the outer edge of the Maluku archipelago, which lies between the Banda and Arafura seas.

A bird’s eye view of these sandy expanses, bordered by turquoise lagoons and strips of sand of a pure whiteness, will have you dreaming of relaxation an escape from the daily pressure of life. Keen divers, will find that the marine environment here is unbelievably well protected and impressively rich: thresher sharks, turtles, barracudas, bumphead parrotfish…you’ll be spoilt for choice!

4.
Spitsbergen in the Arctic

Norwegian explorer Fridtjof Nansen said of Spitsbergen: “Here and there the tall ridges of the sea ice light up with glimmers of pink”. Exploring the largest island of the Svalbard archipelago is a real change of scenery. Svalbard forms the Arctic crown to the north of Norway. Far from the glacial cold which you might expect, Spitsbergen enjoys a relatively mild climate and remarkably varied flora and fauna thanks to its proximity to the famous Gulf Stream.

You can see reindeer, arctic foxes and, if you’re lucky, the king of the islands, the polar bear. On Spitsbergen you can visit old whaling stations that have become ghost towns and enjoy spectacular views of the fjords. More adventurous souls will find there’s nothing quite like spotting seals over the sea ice.

5.
Hvar in Croatia

Last but not least… Hvar ! This island, which is one of Croatia’s Dalmatian Islands, has an air of the Rivieria about it. Located between Split and Dubrovnik, its Venetian-era port regularly attracts a whole host of yachts to its bay. It is one of Europe’s, and even the world’s, most beautiful islands. Its small port dates from the Renaissance and is home to some stunning coves which bring out the explorer in everyone.

Our favourites? Pokonji Dol Beach and Mlini Beach. Hvar, is also a destination where nature is both breathtaking and unspoilt. The subtle fragrance from the lavender fields wafts here and there all over the island, whilst few can resist exploring the Red Rocks natural cave near Španjol Fortress.

Our Top 5 most beautiful islands in the world gives you a starting point for discovering some tried and tested destinations.


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