Musement takes a look at eight lesser-known islands, each with its own particularities, but all true havens of peace and odes to Earth’s natural wonders.
No one’s probably ever told you to avoid Bora Bora, Bali, Tahiti, the Greek Islands or Seychelles for your next destination. Fine, but if you really want to benefit from a little R&R in a secluded environment on your next vacation, we have selected eight off-the-beaten-path islands that are also worth a visit.
1. Mou Waho, New Zealand
Located in southern New Zealand, Mou Waho Island is a nature reserve and sanctuary on Lake Wanaka. Travelers to New Zealand generally prefer open spaces and wild nature, and Mou Waho fits the bill. Between breathtaking panoramas, flora and the myriad bird species that inhabit the unspoiled nature, one finds total fulfillment. No excursion here is complete without having reached “Arethusa Pool” at the summit. Imagine, a lake on an island within a lake on an island!
2. Salt Spring, Canada
Located between British Columbia and Vancouver, Salt Spring Island, home to a large self-sufficient hippie community, is a true paradise for artists and nature lovers. If you have the chance to visit Salt Spring, perhaps between a hike and a kayak ride, don’t miss the Saturday morning market! It’s an essential stop.
3. Saba, the Caribbean
A peaceful, secluded, volcanic island far from the hordes of tourists in the heart of the Caribbean? Welcome to Saba, the smallest island of the Caribbean Netherlands! It’s possible to reach this little corner of paradise by sea or air, but only for the bravest. Saba’s runway is actually the shortest in the world! The atmosphere of this small, secret island assures tranquility and relaxation for any traveler deciding to visit.
4. Quilalea, Mozambique
Think of “Luxury, Serenity, and Pleasure” by French painter Henri Matisse. Quilalea is a private island of the Quirimbas Archipelago in Mozambique. Deserted and surrounded by the Indian Ocean, the island is completely uninhabited except for the few travelers who can afford to stay in one of the nine villas managed by Azura Quilalea Private Island. The villas are arranged to offer maximum privacy for visitors as well as breathtaking views of the Indian Ocean. The protected marine reserve is ideal for diving enthusiasts, and flora and fauna lovers will also find plenty to discover.
5. Tashirojima, Japan
Cat Island. That’s right, you read that correctly. The nice feature of Tashirojima lies in knowing that it has several hundred cats but only around a hundred people! The tale of Tashirojima’s human and feline inhabitants is a true love story. Indeed, for residents of the island, especially the fishermen, cats are synonymous with luck and prosperity.
6. SuperShe, Finland
“Who runs the world?” In Finland, there’s an island reserved exclusively for women! Purchased by a German-American entrepreneur, this no man’s land, located off the shores of Helsinki accepts only a hundred women annually through a rigorous selection process. Days here are spent to the rhythm of yoga, meditation, fitness, healthy cooking, all interspersed with kayak tours, massages, organic meals, all for €4,000 minimum. FYI, when it was first announced last summer, this project made media waves around the world!
7. Oak Island, Nova Scotia
More than an island populated exclusively by cats or women, the island in the collective imagination, is really a “treasure island!” It was inconceivable for us to publish this post without telling you about Oak Island, a small island in Nova Scotia which has been hosting an ongoing treasure hunt for more than 200 years! It’s said that even Franklin Roosevelt even have participated before running in the presidential election…unsuccessfully.
8. Viðey Island, Iceland
A venture to Viðey is simply unforgettable. This island off the coast of Reykjavik is uninhabited, with large expanses of endless wilderness, but there are nonetheless some discrete trails. Travelers who find themselves here alone surrounded by landscapes that unroll beneath their feet, the open sea, the imposing mountains, the towering cliffs, can indulge in contemplation and relax in unspoiled nature.