After Every Country? For Me: Islands!

Direction Island, Cocos (Keeling) Islands, an Australian territory in the Indian Ocean.

By Henrik Jeppesen.

What is next after visiting every country in the world? After the United Nations list of 193 countries, you have organisations like NOC (206) and FIFA (211), but after completing those, what is next? Maybe opinion-based lists made by other people like the Travelers’ Century Club’s list of 329 countries and territories would be the most obvious. I have visited 300 on that list (all 193 countries and 107 territories), but some destinations are not open to tourists, and instead of focusing on lists made by other people, I prefer to focus on islands.

Why Islands? 

Visiting islands can be a very similar experience and feeling to visiting a new country. Each island is different, and some are more interesting than others, but almost all I have visited have been interesting in one way or another. A lot of islands are completely safe, great for hitchhiking, good for interacting with locals, have clean air and are very relaxing. Some islands can also feel like going back in time. I am fascinated with islands, and for me, it’s a lot more interesting to focus my travels on that than cities, regions, and world heritage sites. I don’t think it would be possible to visit all inhabited islands in a lifetime, even if travelling every day, so this is not about completing a list, but rather about being thankful for each island experience I get in my life. 

No bucket list

There are no islands in the world I must visit. I prefer going to interesting islands that are possible on a low budget, when there are promotions, if I do a partnership or if I’m booked for a lecture. Many remote islands would be interesting to visit, but it must make sense financially for me. It’s better to travel this way than following a list of specific destinations you should visit made by other people.

Ranking

With the inspiration of the Michelin guide, I rank islands below.

0 = Not interesting enough to get a recommendation.

R = Recommended island experience.

1 = 1 Star. A good or special experience in one way or another.

2 = 2 Stars. A great or very special experience in one way or another.

3 = 3 Stars. My favourite islands. No limit. A fantastic experience. Each island that gets three stars deserves them.

The Island List

Below are some of the islands I have visited, with a ranking for each and a description of some.

Aegna, 1

One hour by boat from Tallinn. As of the 1st of January 2020, Aegna had 16 permanent residents. Round trip ticket: 6 Euros. This island was lovely and clean. A nice destination for a relaxing day trip.

Aitutaki,Cook Islands, 3
Alrø, R
Als, 1
Amager
Ambon Island, Maluku Islands, R
Andros Island, Bahamas, R
Anguilla, 2
Anholt, 1

A beautiful Danish island located closer to Sweden than Denmark. The boat 3-hour boat trip from Jutland wasn’t enjoyable but the island itself was a good experience. There are also flights from Læsø and Roskilde.

Annobon, 1

A remote island in the Atlantic Ocean belong to Equatorial Guinea.

Antigua, 1
Aruba, 2
Avernakø, 1
Babeldaob, Palau, 2
Bahrain Island, Bahrain, R
Bali, 3
Baltra Island, Galapagos, 1
Barbados, 1
Basse-Terre, Guadeloupe, 1
Bazaruto, Mozambique, 1
Beef Island, British Virgin Islands, 1
Bermuda (main island), 1
Bioko, 1
Bird Island, Seychelles, 1

A nice day trip in 2009. 200 Euros round trip from Mahé wasn’t cheap but a good experience.

Bogø, R
Bonaire, 2
Bora Bora (main island), French Polynesia, 1
Borneo, 1
Bornholm, 2
Bågø, 1
Carrot Cay, Turks and Caicos Islands, 1
Christmas Island, Australia, 1
Corfu, R
Corsica (main island), 1
Crete, 1
Cuba (main island), 1
Curaçao, 1
Cyprus (main island), R
Desroches Island, 1
Dominica, 2
East Falkland, Falkland Islands, 1
Efate, Vanuatu, 2
Egholm
Enø
Eskilsø
Espiritu Santo, Vanuatu, 1
Falster
Fanø, 1
Farø
Fasta Åland (Aland Islands), 2
Fejø, 1
Fernando de Noronha, 2

Maybe the only destination in Brazil that can be considered safe. Located around an hour by plane from the Brazilian mainland. Stunning beaches. A daily tourist fee applies.

Floreana Island, Galapagos, 1
Fongafale, Tuvalu
Frégate Island, 3
Funen (Fyn), 2
Fur, R
Glænø, R
Gorée (Senegal), 2
Gran Canaria, 2
Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands, 2
Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos Islands, 1
Grande Comore, Comoros, 1
Grande-Terre, Guadeloupe, 1
Grande-Terre, Mayotte, R
Great Britain, 1
Greenland, 2
Grenada, 1
Guadalcanal, Solomon Islands, R
Guam
Guernsey, 1
Hainan, R
Hiiumaa, 2
Hispaniola, 1
Hjarnø, R
Home Island, Cocos (Keeling Islands), R
Hong Kong Island, R
Iceland (main island), 3
Ireland (main island), 3
Isabela Island, Galapagos, 1
Isle of Man, 1
Jamaica (main island), 1
Java, 1
Jegindø
Jeju, 1
Jersey, 1
Ko Kut, 2
Koh Phangan, R
Koh Samui, R
Korcula, R
La Digue, 2
Lampedusa
Langeland, R
Langkawi (main island), 1
Livø, 1
Lolland
Lombok, R
Luzon, Philippines, R
Læsø, R
MacCarthy Island, Gambia
Madagascar, 1
Madeira, 1
Mahe, 2
Majuro Atoll (main island), Marshall Islands
Mallorca, 1
Malolo Island, Fiji, 1
Malolo Lailai, Fiji, 1
Malta, R
Mandø, R
Martinique, 1
Masnedø
Mauritius, 2
Montserrat, 1
Mors, R
Motu Tautau, French Polynesia, 1
Muharraq Island, Bahrain
Muhu, 1
Mykines, 1
Mykonos, 1
Møn, 1
Nauru R
Nevis, R
New Britain (PNG)
New Caledonia (main island), 1
New Guinea, R
New Providence, Bahamas, R
Ngerekebesang Island, Palau, 1
North Island, New Zealand, 2
North Island, Seychelles, 2
Nørrejyske Ø, 2
Oahu, Hawaii, 1
Ogasawara (main island: Chichijima), 1
Okinawa, R
Omø, R
Oreor Island, Palau, 1
Orø, R
Palm Jumeirah, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, R
Pamanzi, Mayotte, R
Paradise Island (Hog Island), Bahamas
Phuket, 1
Prangli, 1
Praslin, 2
Prince Edward Island, Canada, 2
Principe, 2
Providencialas, Turks and Caicos Islands, 1
Puerto Rico (main island), R
Raiatea, French Polynesia, 1
Rarotonga, Cook Islands, 1
Ratua, Vanuatu, 1
Rhodes, 1
Robben Island, South Africa, 1
Rodrigues, 2
Réunion, 2
Rømø, R
Saadiyat Island, United Arab Emirates
Saaremaa, 2
Saba, 2
Saint Croix, R
Saint Lucia, 2
Saint Vincent, 1
Saint-Barthélemy, 2
Saint-Pierre, 1
Saipan, 1
Sal, Cape Verde
Samsø, R
San Andrés, R
Santa Cruz Island, Galapagos, 1
Santorini, 1
Sao Tome, 1
Sardinia, 1
Schiermonnikoog, 2
Sejerø, 1
Sicily, 1
Sint Maarten/Saint Martin, 1
Sir Bani Yas, United Arab Emirates, R
Siø
Socotra, 2
South Andaman, Andaman Islands (India)
South Caicos, Turks and Caicos Islands, R
South Island New Zealand, 3
South Tarawa, Kiribati, R
Spitsbergen, 2
Sri Lanka (main island), 1
St. David’s Island, Bermuda
St. Kitts, R
Streymoy Island, Faroe Islands, 2
Sulawesi, R
Sumatra, R
Sylt, R
São Miguel Island, Azores, 1
Tahiti, French Polynesia, R
Taipa, Macau, R
Taiwan (main island), R
Tasmania (main island), 1
Terceira, Azores, 1
Thurø, R
Timor, R
Tinian, 1
Tongatapu, Tonga, 1
Trinidad, R
Tutuila, American Samoa, R
Tåsinge, R
Upolu, Samoa, 1
Vancouver Island, 1
Venø, R
Vieques, Puerto Rico, R
Virgin Gorda, British Virgin Islands, R
Viti Levu, Fiji, 1

Vormsi, 1

A historical island.

Vágar, Faroe Islands, 1
West Island, Cocos (Keeling Islands), 1
West Point Island, Falkland Islands, 1
Yap, Federated States of Micronesia, 1
Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, R

Zanzibar, 1

Been several times.

Zealand, 1

Ærø, R
ʻUtu Vavaʻu, Tonga, R

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