Are you a mountain person or a beach person? For some people, hot weather, long beaches that are empty for as far as the eye can see and the pristine blue oceans are what they long for from a holiday.
Other people are content to be up in the mountains, where the weather is colder, away from it all.
If you fall into the former category as a beach person then a tropical island is probably the place for you. Unlike beaches on the mainland, island beaches are often not crowded, remote and have their own unique culture that stems from being an island nation, cut off from everything else.
Here are five of the best islands to get away from it all for a family vacation.
The island of Nevis is St Kitts’ younger sister in the Caribbean. It has just one newly built resort, in the way of the Four Seasons, all of the other developments are former plantations that have been lovingly converted to hotels.
There’s years of history to behold up in the jungle areas where you can see the ruins of former plantations once worked by slaves. You can also see the ruins of the 18th century Bath Hotel where the likes of Lord Nelson, the future King William IV of Britain and Samuel Taylor Coleridge used to hang out.
For food, there is an abundance of freshly caught seafood and local delights such as rabbit pie and the island is known for having some of the best mangos in the world.
With everything it has to offer and such beautiful scenery, Nevis is perhaps the perfect spot to set up an island webcam.
2. Koh Lanta
This paradise island in Thailand is a peaceful retreat. But compared to some of the other islands on the list it is more touristy.
There are over 12 beaches here, all of them pristine and beautiful. Simply relaxing is an option. If you work remotely and want to network there is an award-winning co-working space on the island, right by one of the best beach spots.
However, if diving and snorkeling is more your thing then this can be arranged. If you want to see some of the smaller islands then you can take a long-tail boat, which is the local way to travel.
To get here you will need first to fly to Bangkok and then make your way down south to the islands by bus and by boat. A trip to Koh Lanta can be combined with other islands nearby such as Phi Phi or Koh Samui.
This tiny island in the Philippines has a reputation for dark magic. The locals are fearful but travelers love hearing the spooky tales. You can visit the balet tree, the local springs and various other historical monuments such as churches.
There are also diving trips out to Apo Island where you can go snorkeling, see the coral and swim with turtles.
To travel here you will need to fly to either Cebu or Manila and then catch a series of local ferries which stop off at the bigger island of Bohol. You can combine a trip to Siquijor with other islands in the Philippines – there are over 7,000 of them.
The sunsets from the Coconut Grove resort are stunning. Even if you are not staying here be sure to take a Tuk-Tuk (taxi) here and have dinner or drinks on the beach one night.
4. The Cook Islands
The Cooks Islands are a paradise in the Pacific but the 15 islands are spread over a vast area so visiting them all would be a difficult challenge.
With almost perfect weather all year round, however, the Cook Islands are the perfect place to get away from everything. There are no built-up resorts and you can go kite-surfing or cycling and a host of other sports.
Better still you can chill on one of the long-empty beaches in a hammock, taking in the sights.
Rarotonga is the capital of the island group and where you will fly into. There is a variety of accommodation from luxury villas to hotels to family-friendly holiday homes, making it the ideal family vacation idea.
Another island in the Philippines, this one offers visitors an authentic Filipino experience with the local bustling town at the center of this paradise. You can walk down to the harbor and get a local meal – pork adobo, anyone?
There are some beautiful beaches here a short scooter or Tuk-Tuk ride away but the main reason people come to the island is for the diving opportunities. Even if you don’t dive you can snorkel and swim in shipwrecks and spectacular coral reefs.
On Coron, there are also waterfalls that you can take a trip to and there is a stunning viewpoint with a sign similar to the Hollywood sign.
To get here you can take a flight from nearby Cebu or Manila. Alternatively, there is a 30-hour ferry from Manila for a cheaper price.
There are a variety of places to stay from home-stays where you will get the local experience to home-stays.
Tropical Islands Are Magical Places
If you’re wondering about where to go on your next vacation be sure to think about some of these beautiful islands. Tropical islands are the ultimate place to lounge around in a hammock to get away from it all and soak up the sun.
Islands can be special communities because they are detached from the rest of the continent. And in places such as Thailand or the Caribbean, you can become immersed in the cuisine and the culture in ways that might be more difficult on the mainland.
From the Philippines to the South Pacific Cook Islands, there are islands across the world that suit everyone’s style and budget.
If you are interested in other stories on travel, be sure to read the travel tips section on the blog.