Thousands of Travelers Agree This Is the "Best Island in the World"

Though you might imagine the best islands in the world to share similar characteristics, Travel+Leisure's World's Best List proves there are many destinations that don't fit the palm-fringed mold. The travel authority tapped thousands of readers to vote on the number one island destination and the winner might be considered surprising.

Beating popular choices like Bora Bora, Tahiti, and Santorini, Greece, the title of "best island in the world" was awarded to Java, Indonesia. Unlike many of the small islands on the list, Java is the geographic and economic center of the country, home to half of its population. It's the first time Java has featured on the annual list and readers gave it a total score of 95.28, thanks to its idyllic waterfalls, towering volcanos, and protected parks. In fact, Indonesian islands took out the top three awards, with Bali and Lombok voted the second and third best islands in the world. 

Best Island in the World—Java, Indonesia
Getty Images

The 10 Best Islands in the World

1. Java, Indonesia

2. Bali, Indonesia

3. Lombok, Indonesia

4. Maldives

5. Waiheke Island, New Zealand

6. Palawan, Philippines

7. Mauritius

8. Cebu, Philippines

9. Paros, Greece

10. Tasmania, Australia

Packing List

Small Wicker Basket
Hat Attack Small Wicker Basket $104
Lumiere Swimsuit
Broochini Lumiere Swimsuit $235
Adam Selman The Last Lolita Cat-eye Acetate Sunglasses
Le Specs Adam Selman The Last Lolita Cat-eye Acetate Sunglasses $120
ban. do Aloha Towel Aloha Towel $38
Sol Sana Teresa Slide Sandal - Women's
Sol Sana Teresa Slide Sandal $90
Klint Bolero Hat
Janessa Leone Klint Bolero Hat $190

Next up: This was voted the best island in Europe.

Related Stories