The world's top 10 islands to visit

National Geographic has come up with a top 10 islands to visit. Now you might expect to see the islands of the Maldives or maybe one or two of the Greek islands, but no… this list is quite different. There’s no Fiji, no Seychelles, and it seems that even the Galapagos don’t make the grade for National Geographic this time around.

Here’s their list of the top 10 islands to visit.

1. Nantucket, Massachusetts, USA
2. Isles of Scilly, England, UK
3. Saba, Netherlands West Indies
4. Canary Islands
5. Fair Isle, Scotland, UK
6. Lord Howe Islands, Australia
7. Capri, Italy
8. Channel Islands, California, USA
9. Tahiti, French Polynesia
10. Islands of the Andaman Sea, Thailand

What do you think?  Are you surprised at the selection?  Are there some islands that you think they’ve missed, or some that you think shouldn’t be there?

Comments (23)

  1. Travis James says:

    I love the list of islands. Especially Fair isle, Scotland. There is another island up there called Skara Brae, very historic and filled with mystery.

  2. Eleni says:

    Santorini isn’t one of them? Nor Mykonos? Are you serious? How can you talk about “the best islands of the world” and not mention them?

  3. Bob Thomason says:

    A very good personal list (I love #1) – my additions would be Sardinia, Hvar, and Tobago, and New Zealand. Great starter for a discussion.

  4. Laura says:

    Agree Mykonos would be there for me. One of the Maldive islands, perhaps Ibiza. And what about good old GB!

  5. Giorgos says:

    Greece is a country made out of islands and not one is included. Many of them such as Santorini, Patmos,and Crete are astonishing in terms of beauty, extremely rich in terms of their culture, and full of activities!

  6. I can appreciate the rankings of the top 10 islands. I feel that Capri should have faired a little better, the island offers such great views from the top of Mt. Solaro or inside the Blue Grotto. Not to mention the world’s best Lemoncello.

  7. These are all great choices….but Cape Breton Island is also another one that could make this list! Located off the coast of Nova Scotia, it is everything including spectacular scenery, sandy beaches, history, culture and friendly locals!

  8. alex says:

    Great to see the Canary Islands getting on the list. Seven islands, eight with little La Graciosa, each with its own personality. So much more to the Canaries than tourist resorts but that is all most people seem to see :-D

  9. Christopher says:

    Great list, would’ve liked to see some more Caribbean Islands like St. Lucia, Trinidad and Tobago, Antigua.

  10. John says:

    Great list but I am disappointed not to see any of the stunning Caribbean islands such as St. John, usvi, and St. Barths.

  11. Sf Susu says:

    Good idea: Saba, St Barts, and Santorini. Patmos is also unexpectedly cool. Some places to think about for the slots #10-#20 on this list: Matzu (off coast of Fujian China, accessible from Taipei, Taiwan); Liu Dao (Orchid Island) between Taiwan and Philippines, accessible from Taitung, Taiwan…); Penghu (in Straits of Formosa, accessible from Taiwan…)….Lantau Island (Hong Kong…) and Bermuda. I know, it’s hard to decide….

  12. nert says:

    Nantucket? Really? This place absolutely sucks… even in the summer time. Yuppie/illegal filled dump.

  13. Lacey says:

    I was born and raised on Nantucket so I am very excited to see that we are #1! Yay for my home town!

  14. Tyler says:

    Nantucket my home town. Great people and even better charm. The fishing is the best on the east. If you come down you have to take a ride in milestone taxi, best.

  15. mike says:

    The best kept secret island in the world is (ile a vache) in Haiti. A lot of people don’t know about this paradise island. The best in the Carribean.

  16. David C says:

    It is perplexing how Santorini could not make the cut. I have only been to one these islands on the list (Nantucket). Nantucket is one of my favorite places in the world. With great food, shopping, sightseeing, and History, it is no wonder how it made the top of the list. If you have never been it is so worth it. Plan your trip around one of the many festivals and stay in any of the many choices in downtown.

  17. Paul Johnson says:

    There has been another list since, from Tripadvisor, where Santorini did make the cut.

    More here:

  18. John Reade says:

    Very pleased to see Isles of Scilly on your list. Was first taken there before my first birthday and 44 years later still visiting an still adore them.

    Other islands? Sicily is very special. And Skomer, Wales is a naturalists dream island.

  19. Canopache says:

    Hey nert, you must of had the wrong people show you around, Someday you should consider giving this amazing place some more of your time

  20. Ana says:

    Have you ever visited Puerto Rico, outside of Old San Juan and the tourist areas in the San Juan area? Puerto Rico has sooo many unique things! I would like to know if you have ever showcased PR? We have 2 out of 3 Bioluminescent Bays, The only tropical Rain Forest in the Americas, beaches featured in the Travel Channel as # 1 in the world 3 times; Flamenco Beach and so may other things such as food, festivals,and most important the people.

  21. Paul Johnson says:

    Yes, Ana, Puerto Rico has received coverage on ALTB quite a few times:

  22. Samuel Diaz says:

    Awesome list and happy to see you didn´t forget Canary Islands.
    NIce beaches and nice cultural offer as well in cities such as La Laguna, original capital of the Islands and Human Heritage Site by UNESCO.

  23. Mercedes Monteys says:

    These are great, but there are more than 100 great islands in the world.. Cuba, Hong Kong, Sardinia, Fiji, Santorini, Capri, Mallorca, Ibiza, Hvar, Zanzíbar, Seychelles, Maldives…

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