With its growing regional tourism, it’s not surprising that Asia dominated the rankings of Global Destination Cities Index with 10 out of 20 coming from Asia and Pacific Region Cities. Given its size and diversity, Asia has a lot more to it aside from its culture, ethnic groups, economics, different climates, etc. One of its best kept wealth are the beautiful paradise islands. With its crystal clear water, best diving spots, colorful underwater life, white sand beaches and lush green hills, Asia’s beautiful islands are the closest thing to heaven we have here on earth. Today, we listed down the 20 most beautiful islands to visit in Asia.
1. Similan Islands, Thailand
Similan Islands is a group of Islands in the Andaman Sea off the cost of, and part of, Phang Nga Province in Southern Thailand. Some of the major attractions are Ko Similan which is the largest island. The sea in the area has an average depth of 60 feet.
Underwater it is full of rock formations and coral reefs in several shapes and forms resembling such things as deer, leaves, brains, and mushrooms. Another tourist attraction is the Ko Huyong and its famous diving sites for its variety and abundance of marine life.
2. Pom Pom Island, Malaysia
Pom Pom Island is a small coral reef island in the Celebes Sea, North East of Semporna town in Sabah, East Malaysia. Enjoy the white sand coral beach of Pom Pom Island and is a significant nesting location site for Green and Hawksbill turtles. This is one of the most popular dive destination in the Semporna district.
3. Macleod Island, Myanmar
Macleod Island is located in the Mergui archipelago off Myanmar’s coast. Find peace with its natural, untouched, serene and full of simple beauty. Macleod Island is fringed by soft white sands, palm trees and is also known for its inland rainforests and offshore coral reefs.
4. Koh Rong, Cambodia
Koh Rong is the second largest island of Cambodia and it’s located in Commune No. 5 or Sangkat Koh Rong of the Mittakpheap district in Sihanoukville Province off the coast in the Gulf of Thailand. You’ll definitely enjoy its spectacular southern coastline that is exposed to the weather and open sea. Whereas the eastern coast is characterized by a sequence of smooth hills, gently slopoing towards the numerous crescent-shaped beaches, inlets and bays.
5. Cat Ba Island, Vietnam
Cat Ba is the largest of the 367 islands in Northern Vietnam. Its surface are maintains the dramatic and rugged features of Ha Long bay and is commonly used as an overnight hotel stops on tours to Ha Long Bay. This island belongs the famous city of industry in Vietnam – the Haiphong City. You’ll be amazed by the different types of natural habitats – limestone karsts, coral reefs, mangrove, sea grass beds, lagoons, beaches, caves, tropical limestone forest and willow swamp forest. Cat Ba has become a tourist hub for both the Island and greater Ha Long Bay. Free wifi on this island has deployed all over the island so it’s now easy for all working travelers.
6. Komodo Island, Indonesia
Komodo is one of the 17,508 islands that compose the Republic of Indonesia. The island is particularly notable as the habitat of the Komodo dragon, the largest lizard on Earth. Komodo island is also a popular destination for diving. It also contains a beach with pink sand, one of only seven in the world.
7. Palawan, Philippines
Province of Palawan is located in the Mimaropa region of the Philippines. Irregular coastline of Palawan are dotted with roughly 1,780 islands and islets, rocky covers, and sugar white sandy beaches. Named as best island in the world by different Travel and Tourism Organizations. Palawan has a lot of attractions to offer namely Calauit Game Preserve and Wildlife Sanctuary, Coron Reefs in Busuanga, El Nido Marine Reserve Park, Malampaya Sound Land and Seascape Protected Area, UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Ursula Island, Rasa Island Wildlife Sanctuary and a lot more.
8. Perhentian Islands, Malaysia
Located in the northeastern coast of West Malaysia in the state of Terennganu, Perhentian Islands have become a popular travel destination for families and backpackers alike due to the many lodging options that accommodate almost any budget. Popular tourist activities include scuba-diving, snorkeling, and swimming. On most beaches, the water is
shallow with many rays, cuttlefish and parrotfish. For diving, there are dozens of dive sites around both main islands, as well as several off-shore sites. Apart from these, activities like camping, canoeing, fishing, jungle trekking, and banana boat riding are
also available. As for accommodation, most of it can be found on Perhentian Besar, the larger island. Hotels are usually aimed at budget travelers.
9. Cebu Island, Philippines
Located in the Central Visayas of the Philippines, Cebu is consisting of the main island itself and 167 surrounding islands and islets. Cebu Island has narrow coastlines, limestone plateaus and coastal plains. It also has rolling hills and rugged mountain
ranges traversing the northern and southern lengths of the island. Beaches, coral atolls, islands and rich fishing grounds surround Cebu.
10. Havelock Island, Andaman Islands, India
Havelock Island is the largest of the islands that comprise Ritchie’s Archipelago, a chain of islands to the east of Great Andaman in the Andaman Islands. One of the most popular beaches in Havelock Island is the Radha Nagar and was named as “Best Beach in Asia” by Time. Other notable activities include snorkeling at the Elephant Beach, Scuba Diving, Fishing, Cruising to nearby uninhabited islands and kayaking.
11. Aka Island, Japan
Commonly known as Aka or Aka-shima and is located in the Southwest of Okinawa Island. Akajima is also noted for its terrestrial wildlife, especially its birds, butterflies and Golden silk orb-weaver spiders. Kerama deer are unique to the Kerama islands group and are able to swim between the islands. These deer have been designated a national
protected species of Japan.
12. Jeju Island, South Korea
Also known as Jejudo Island. Jeju offers unbelievably breathtaking views from coast to coast, ranging from the waterfalls at Hae-anjidae to the naturally sculpted cliffs at Jusang Jeolli. Tourists can enjoy each season in Jeju with a particular splash of color; brilliant yellow-colored flowers in the spring that spread across the landscape, the golden beaches and sea vistas in the summertime, the Eulalia’s light brown wispy reeds flowing in the autumn winds, and the lovely snow flowers of Hallasan in winter are all must-sees of Jeju.
13. Raja Ampat, Indonesia
Located off the northwest tip of Bird’s Head Peninsula on the island of New Guinea, in Indonesia’s West Papua province, Raja Ampat is considered the global epicenter of tropical marine bio-diversity and is referred to as The Crown Jewel of the Bird’s Head Seascape, which also includes Cenderawasih Bay and Triton Bay.
14. Mentawai Islands, Indonesia
The Mentawai Islands are a chain of about seventy islands and islets off the western coast of Sumatra in Indonesia. These islands have become a noted destination for surfing.
15. Baros Island, Maldives
Baros Island is part of the North Male Atoll, home to the capital Male. Baros, an island offering a small dose of Paradise, is home to the Baros luxury hotel. The quiet, peaceful and stunning beaches circling the perimeter are perfect for relaxing and sunbathing.
16. Bali, Indonesia
Located at the westernmost end of the Lesser Sunda Islands between Java to the west and Lombok to the east. Bali is a popular tourist destination, which has seen a significant rise in tourists over the years. The Island of Bali received the Best Island award from Travel and Leisure in 2010. This Island won because of its attractive surroundings, diverse tourist attractions, excellent international and local restaurants, and the friendliness of the local people.
17. Phuket, Thailand
Phuket, a rainforested, mountainous island in the Andaman Sea, has some of Thailand’s most popular beaches, mostly situated along the clear waters of the western shore. The island is home to many high-end seaside resorts, spas and restaurants. Phuket City, the capital, has old shophouses and busy markets. Patong, the main resort town, has many nightclubs, bars and discos.
18. Boracay, Aklan, Philippines
Boracay is a small island in the Philippines located in Western Visayas region of the Philippines. Boracay Island and its beaches have received awards from numerous travel publications and agencies. Apart from its white sand beaches, Boracay is also famous for being one of the world’s top destinations for relaxation. It is also emerging among the top destinations for tranquility and nightlife.
19. Langkawi Island, Malaysia
Officially known as Langkawi the Jewel of Kedah, Langkawi Island has two main island areas: the Southern Islands, with a heavier tourist population and the islands to the north east which are more secluded with little tourist traffic. Langun Island has a fresh-water lake like Pregnant Maiden Lake only without the tourists and has Sand Spit Beach on its south-facing orientation. Dendang Island next to it forms a bay popular with Langkawi sailing yacht tour operators who favour the area for its natural beauty and peace.
20. Iriomote Island, Japan
Iriomote Island is the largest of the Yaeyama Islands and the second largest in Okinawa Prefecture after Okinawa Island itself. The island is famed for the Iriomote cat, a Critically Endangered wild cat found only on Iriomote.