With months of lockdowns and restricted movement across the country, comes a strong desire amongst Aussie travellers to visit destinations they’ve never been before. So if you’re searching for an island holiday that’s secluded and a little different, you’ve certainly come to the right place.
Here’s our list of the best holiday islands that are a little lesser known but just as close to paradise as your perennial favourites. Be aware however, some of these elusive destinations can be a little hard to get to, so reach out to your local Travellers Choice agent to plan your secret getaway!
Saipan, Northern Mariana Islands
This secluded island is the ideal destination for historians, marine lovers and hikers alike, with plenty to do and discover on the island. Saipan is the largest of the Northern Mariana Islands, which are located just north of Guam in the Pacific Ocean and, like Guam, are part of the US Commonwealth. Whether it’s diving with turtles and reef sharks in the coral-filled Grotto, exploring the World War 2 battlefields or hiking through the island’s best trails, Saipan is the perfect place to get away from it all.
Rangitoto Ki Te Tonga / D’Urville Island, New Zealand
D’Urville Island, or Rangitoto Ki Te Tonga as it is known in Te Reo Maori, is a small island in the Cook Strait (the body of water between New Zealand’s North and South Islands). With only about 52 inhabitants, D’Urville is a nature lover’s paradise. Explore the protected pest-free native bush and expect plenty of birdlife, in fact, you’ll be woken in the morning by a cacophony like nothing you’ve heard before. Travel to the island is a little long-winded, you’ll need to fly to Nelson or Blenheim, drive for a few hours and then catch a quick boat ride to get to your destination, but take our word for it, the seclusion and rugged coastlines are well worth the journey.
Fair Isle, Scotland
Amongst the Shetland Islands of Scotland is a quaint little destination called Fair Isle, known by knitting enthusiasts the world over as the origin of a unique style of stranded knitting. If crafting history isn’t your thing, there’s bird watching, peaceful walks and classic Scottish Isle coastlines to help you feel totally sequestered. Plus, big storms and foggy weather has made the isle a shipwreck hotspot, so there’s plenty of interesting seafaring history to get your head around. To make the most of all that Fair Isle has to offer, we recommend visiting in June or July to see the exquisite display of flowering plants - there are over 250 species on the island to discover!
Desroches Island, Seychelles
If you’re dreaming of a tropical island destination to travel to next year, look no further than Desroches Island in Seychelles. Historically part of British Indian Ocean Territory, Desroches Island reclaimed its independence in 1976, becoming part of the Republic of Seychelles which lies north of Madagascar and East of Kenya. Expect clear reef waters, swaying palm trees and fresh coconuts from the local plantation. With only one place to stay on the island, an intimate and luxurious resort, you won’t have anything to do but relax, swim offshore from white sand beaches, read a book and unwind.
Lord Howe Island, Australia
If you’re not keen to venture too far from home, Australia has plenty of secluded islands to offer you the hideaway holiday you’ve been looking for. One such destination is Lord Howe Island, located in the Tasman Sea about 700km from the mainland. QantasLink can take you there from Brisbane or Sydney in just over 2 hours - or you can make your own way by boat. Once you arrive, you’ll be blown away by the unique flora and fauna on the island. Due to its remote destination and varied volcanic landscape, Lorde Howe is home to 113 plants and 960 insects that are found nowhere else in the world. With wellbeing experiences, island tours, snorkelling, fishing, luxury accommodation and plenty of dining destinations, Lorde Howe Island is the relaxing island getaway you deserve.
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