Thinking about a new place for a cruise, a charter or just a vacation? Take a look at some of these islands, which Coastal Living calls the “best secret islands on earth,” with white-sand beaches, fresh seafood and, best of all, no crowds.
Skopelos, in Greece (pictured above), caught my eye, with its hidden coves, blue-roofed tavernas, Byzantine churches and endless views of the turquoise Aegean. It also has the beach that Hollywood used for scenes in Mama Mia.
In Belize, Caye Caulker is a laid-back, five-mile-long strip of land where you can snorkel among the nurse sharks and rays at Shark Ray Alley or go scuba diving in underwater caves at Blue Hole. Half a world away, you can get away from it all on the bone-white beaches in the Andaman Islands, a series of 550 atolls in the Bay of Bengal in India.
If white sand isn’t your thing, try Sandön Island in Sweden, the setting for Stieg Larsson’s Millennium thriller trilogy, with mossy forests and windblown, fog-shrouded beaches. Or Flatey Island in Iceland, a rocky, one-mile hideway with lush meadows and multi-colored timbered houses where the sun shines 21 hours a day in summer.
For beautiful views of the South China Sea, the list includes Con Dao, 110 miles off the coast of Vietnam, part of a 16-island chain that’s still to be discovered by tourists. “Imagine a tropical Amalfi Coast without the crowds.” For more: