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Top Five Tropical Island Escapes

Let’s face at this point of the year in the Northern Hemisphere, we could all use some Vitamin Sea and Vitamin Sun. Even those of us who live on the Cloud are starved of warmth and sunshine. So, what better time to recommend the Top Five Tropical Islands Escapes? If you’re dreaming of a life made in the shade, here are my top recommendations in order:

 

5. Zanzibar

Set your sites for this beautiful archipelago of tropical islands off the east coast of Africa. This wonderfully exotic location offers one of the most beautiful island experiences in the world. Zanzibar is the perfect setting for a unique tropical retreat.

 

tropical islands Escapes - zanzibar

You’d be coconuts to miss Zanzibar!

Famous for its spice plantations, diverse culture, and many exotic species found nowhere else in the world, there is plenty to see and do whilst enjoying the gorgeous beaches and tropical weather. Make a visit to Stone Town, part of the capital Zanzibar City, to see where Persian, Arabic, Indian and European cultures mix harmoniously. Enjoy a must-taste trip to the Forodhani Food Market. Experience the islands’ biodiversity with a trip to Jozani Chwaka Bay National Park to count butterflies, chance a rare sighting of the Red Colobus Monkey, or marvel at the variety of lush greenery. Of course, take time to smell the tropical flowers, sinking your feet into the warm sands and let your worries drift out to the crystal clear azure sea on Nungwi’s beaches.

 

4. Aruba

Perhaps the Beach Boys said it best, “We’ll get there fast and then we’ll take it slow – that’s where we want to go”. This little island in the middle of the Caribbean Sea gently soothes all who visit into a slower, more tranquil pace of life. It is one of four countries that make up the Dutch Kingdom, which is why most Arubans speak Dutch alongside the native Papiamento creole language. Home to more than 90 different nationalities including Haitian, Dominican and Columbian cultures, all which have had a large influence on the local culture, this is one of the most ethnically diverse tropical islands in the world, with a landscape to match.

Nature lovers will be spoilt for choice with a variety of ecosystems including towering sand dunes peppered with succulents like aloe (great for sunburns!), wildlife-filled marshes and rocky volcanic coastlines. Take a dip in the Natural Pool, visit Dos Playas to observe a natural turtle nesting and hatching hotspot, or visit pink-feathered friends at Flamingo Beach.

Aruba, top 5 islands

Aruba’s where you want to flamin-go

Whether you’re on a seafood or ‘see food’ diet, you’ll be right at home with daily catches including mahi-mahi, grouper, lobster and more alongside Brazilian, Portuguese, Dutch and Aruban cuisines, reflecting the truly multi-cultural background of the islanders. Aruba is also known for its vibrant and often rum-soaked nightlife, for those looking to party. Aruba will rub you the right way!

 

3. Seychelles

Returning across the world to the Indian Ocean, this group of 115 volcanic islands, nestled in the warm current of seasonal winds will capture your heart. Sun yourself on one of the many beautiful beaches, scuba dive at Marianne Rock or snorkel at Anse Lazio for dramatic, up-close views of rocky and tropical marine life, or bike along the coasts of La Digue island.

seychelles top 5 islands

Can’t see the rainforest for the trees!

Whether you are someone who is constantly active on holiday or someone who doesn’t want to move from their sun lounger, these tropical islands accommodate all your desires. Calling all bird-watchers; the Seychelles is home to over 250 species of exotic and beautiful birds, so don’t forget your binoculars. Hikers will also enjoy the many trails available such as Glacis Trois Freres, Morne Blanc and Cassendent. Delicious seafood is ubiquitous on the islands, barbecue and creole cuisine will delight all tastes, and markets like Sir Selwyn-Clarke selling some of the best fresh fish and vegetables will delight your senses. Save room in your suitcase to bring home luminous black pearls, a local treasure worth a special shopping trip to Black Pearl Farm on Praslin Island.

2.  Fiji

One of my favourite places to visit on the earth, Fiji is made up of over 300 islands well known for their natural beauty, biodiversity and ideal conditions for diving, snorkelling and surfing. If warm water exploration is what you’re after, this is the place for you. Fiji is also has one of the most developed economies of the pacific Islands and enjoys a modern and influential local tourism industry. Fijian people are generous and welcoming and encourage all who visit to take part in some of their more traditional customs. This might include the chance to walk over hot coals! Try the national stimulant drink called kava, experience a lovo; a delicious below-ground barbecue technique, or attend a Meke comprised of traditional song and dance. Visit Mantaray Island for the unique opportunity to swim amongst the graceful rays or dance the night away on a floating open-air dance club, appropriately named Cloud 9.

Fiji is a wonderful place to experience the local indigenous island culture, idyllic clear waters, coral reefs, dense forests and a rich ecotourism industry that showcases the republic’s wonderful natural resources. Fiji is a fantastic and exotic place to visit that will refresh your soul as well as your body!

Love it or lovo it!

1. Maldives

These are my absolute favourite tropical islands location in the world! The Maldives is spread over one thousand tiny coral islands in the Indian Ocean but leaves a large impression for anyone who has stepped foot onto its shores. This beautiful country is known for its sustainable tourism industry. It is a world leader in combating the climate crisis, ever-rising sea levels and the preservation of indigenous ecosystems, cultures and languages. Visitors will be enamoured with the volume of coral reefs, pristine beaches with their deep blue oceanic hues and caster sugar-like sands. It is also a sun-worshipper’s dream. Home to numerous innovating and luxurious features such as underwater restaurants, serving the freshest seafood, or yoga-based retreats, it adheres to a “one island, one resort” rule in order to remain in balance with the ecology. Head to the island of Dhigurah, known as the “marine playground” to experience whale sharks and dolphins.

 

Maldives tropical islands

The Maldives are never a last resort.

Enjoy popular Ari Atoll to explore pristine beaches or embark on underwater diving or snorkelling adventures. For locally, boutique resorts I highly recommend a visit to The Mirihi Island Resort or Coco Bodu Hithi. The Maldives offers breath-taking beauty, fun in the sun and outstanding hospitality. It is most certainly paradise on earth!

Each of these wonderful tropical islands escapes is a huge treat for a shivering denizen of northern climes. We all would enjoy a visit to any one of these wonderful locations. There are many other beautiful island locations we’ve featured but each of these is simply exquisite

 

Love,

 

Isabella

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