Vacations are a time to relax, explore, and re-charge before going back to your daily life, but it can be difficult to enjoy a vacation when there are crowds of tourists all around, trying to do the exact same thing. If you have ever wanted to get away from it all and relax on a secret island somewhere, then this list is for you. Below are a few little known islands from all over the world that offer amazing views, activities, and culture.
1. Marettiomo, Italy
photo courtesy travelviaitaly.com
Marettimo is the smallest of the Egadi Islands off the west coast of Sicily, and was known by ancient Greeks as "Sacred Island." It can only be reached by ferry, but the sights, hiking, diving and swimming are worth the trip.There is one small town on Marettimo that shares the island's name. It known as a calm village with almost no traffic, but has a few small restaurants and cafes to cater to tourists during peak season. Because the island is so remote, there are no resorts or hotels, so guests usually stay in rented rooms or privately owned residences.
2. Nevis, Caribbean Sea
photo courtesy of nevisisland.com
Nevis is the neighbor of the more widely known St. Kitts island in the Caribbean Sea. It is reachable by plane and boat, and has plenty of hotel and resort accommodations. Nevis Peak, a dormant volcano, is central to the island and boasts beautiful views for those willing to hike it. The Botanical Gardens are also a must-see, where you can walk among incredible native tropical flora and fauna. This small island is also the birthplace of Alexander Hamilton, one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. His childhood home is preserved as a museum in the capital of Charlestown.
3. North Stradbroke Island, Australia
photo courtesy visitbrisbane.com
Known to locals as "Straddie," this gem is about 20 miles off the coast from Brisbane. Naree Budjong Djara National Park covers roughly half the island, and preserves many threatened and endangered species of plants and animals alike. Straddie is known as a laid back spot, so you are unlikely to find any fine dining or five star accommodations, but you will find plenty of diving, hiking, surfing, and whale watching on it's shores. There are also plenty of hotels, B&Bs, and restaurants for tourists and day-trippers.
4. Pico, Portugal
photo courtesy of Portugal Holidays
Home the highest peak in Portugal, the volcano Ponta de Pico, this small island is known for its vineyards and views. Also called "the mountain island," It is the second largest island in the Portugese Azores, and can be reached by plane from a variety of airlines. Fishing, kayaking, hiking, and paragliding are just a few of the attractions Pico has to offer. There are also a variety of accommodations for any budget or traveler. from hotels and hostels to campgrounds, allowing you to immerse yourself in the unique natural habitats.
5. Solta, Croatia
photo courtesy Total Croatia News
Only about 9 miles from Split, Solta is the perfect getaway for those who want to explore other islands, but would rather stay somewhere more secluded. The island is home to many family farms that specialize in fine wines and olive oils, and many offer affordable tasting packages. Although it is known for it's beautiful, relaxing beaches, Solta also has activities like biking, sailing, scuba diving, and much more. It is less likely to be crowded with tourists than Croatia's other islands, but offers the same natural beauty and experience.