The United States of America is home to a huge variety of environments – from rolling plains to dense forests – so it makes sense this country would also be home to some amazing islands. Here are our top 10 U.S. islands you’ll want to plan a trip to!
1. The San Juan Islands
Located in the Pacific Northwest – Washington State, specifically – the San Juan Islands are a great spot for whale watching, experiencing the Pacific Northwest, and getting away from the city. Consisting of over 20 islands, San Juan Island, Orcas Island, and Vancouver Island are among the most popular to visit. Several of the islands are accessible via ferry.
2. Catalina Island
Head off the coast of southern California to experience this dreamy, peaceful island. Catalina Island has long been a prime vacation spot on the west coast, and it’s no wonder as to why. Boasting mild weather year-round, the island is a great spot for snorkeling, boating, or relaxing on the beach.
3. Amelia Island
This gorgeous island off the coast of Florida is said to be home to some of the best beaches in the world! Amelia Island is also home to several luxury hotels, golf courses, and shops, making this a great option for those looking for a retreat without leaving too many amenities from home behind.
4. Key West
One of the five Florida Keys, this island offers a little something for everyone! Those interested in history will love getting to see historic sites, such as Ernest Hemingway’s house, first hand. More interested in nightlife? Not to worry – this island has a vibrant bar and nightlife scene as well! And everyone is sure to love the dreamy beaches that border Key West!
5. Martha’s Vineyard
Located off the coast of Massachusetts, Martha’s Vineyard has long been a popular getaway. With gorgeous beaches and a variety of attractions – such as film festivals, fairs, and farmer’s markets – you’ll definitely want to consider visiting this island!
Another island off the Massachusett coast, Nantucket is a great option for those looking to relax. The island is home to many restaurants, shops, and beaches, and is a great place to visit year-round – though swimming may be best reserved for summer, as temperatures do get chilly in the winter months. The island is accessible by plane or ferry and is a popular vacation spot as well as a great place for a day trip.
7. Marco Island
This dream island is situated in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Florida. Home to several resorts, you won’t want to miss out visiting this island getaway! Stroll along any of the sandy beaches lining the island, or go kayaking in the tidal lagoon at Tigertail Beach Park – you’re sure to have a memorable time either way!
8. Sanibel Island
Another island just off the coast of Florida, this is a great option for nature and wildlife lovers! This peaceful island is one of the world’s best shelling spots. The waters surrounding it are also home to a lot of manatees and dolphins, and the island itself contains several short hiking trails. The island is accessible by short boat or plane trip, making it ideal for either a day trip or a longer stay.
9. Pine Island
Located near Sanibel Island, this retreat makes for a serene and relaxing time! Popular activities on the island include scuba diving, shell collecting, and viewing the mangroves. In addition to being one of the larger islands in the area, Pine Island is also home to several resorts. This makes it a great option for a longer stay!
10. Hilton Head Island
Located in South Carolina, Hilton Head Island is home to a variety of attractions that make it worth visiting. You’ll want to check out the 12 miles of beaches surrounding the island, of course. You may also want to head inland to check out the vibrant art scene, which includes live music, museums, and so much more!
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com
Thursday 16th of September 2021
Just an FYI - there's actually 172 named islands in the San Juan archipelago. Not all are inhabited. Vancouver Island is not included as its part of Canada. Thanks!