We surveyed over 555,000+ Instagram followers, asking them one question…
What’re the best tropical beach destinations?
After spending a ton of time filtering responses, we narrowed it down to 65 destinations. From the Caribbean to the South Pacific, here are the best tropical beach destinations.
Let’s start with…
65. Oahu, Hawaii
A beautiful option for your Hawaii trip is Oahu. Oahu is a very popular destination as it’s home to Hawaii’s capital, Honolulu. Nightlife, gourmet cuisine, authentic culture, and of course, a beautiful tropical environment. Oahu is a great island if you want a little bit of everything. Most visitors start their journey to Hawaii in Honolulu, so why not spend a little extra time exploring all that Oahu has to offer?
Popular things to do in Oahu
- Check out Diamond Head, a dormant volcano and beautiful landmark
- Waikiki Beach is Hawaii’s most famous beach, and it is located in Oahu!
- To see turtles and other wildlife, visit Hanauma Bay
64. The Big Island, Hawaii
The Big Island is Hawaii’s largest island and a great place to plan your first trip to Hawaii. Known for its two active volcanoes, The Big Island also has beautiful places to get away and relax. Whether you’re looking for (active) volcanoes, lush forests, or sandy beaches, The Big Island has what you want. Nature-lovers should consider this island for their Hawaii destination, as it is home to unique natural beauties in the state.
Popular things to do in Big Island
- Visit Kilauea Volcano, one of the most active volcanoes in the world
- Hike Mauna Kea, a dormant volcano with Hawaii’s highest peak
- Check out Akaka Falls State Park
63. Utila, Honduras
Known for its coral reefs and diving is Utila, another one of the Bay Islands located north of Honduras’ coast. Utila is the smallest of the Bay Islands, following both Roatan and Guanaja, but is still teeming with reasons to visit. Whether you go to check out the amazing (and affordable!) marine life by diving or just relax on the beach, you’ll surely book a trip back as soon as you can.
Popular things to do in Utila
- Go diving or snorkeling in one of the many dive sites in the coral reefs
- Check out the iguanas at The Iguana Research and Breeding Station
- Enjoy Utila town’s vibrant nightlife
62. Christmas Island, Australia
South of Indonesia is an Australian territory island, Christmas Island. This beautiful island is filled with wetlands, waterfalls, and wildlife, on top of its stunning beaches. Its location in the Indian Ocean surrounded by reefs makes it the perfect place for adventure lovers who want to snorkel. Perhaps you could take a day to hike and see the wildlife, a day to snorkel in the reefs, and a day to visit the waterfalls! Whatever you want to do, you can do it on Christmas Island.
Popular things to do in Christmas
- Visit Christmas Island National Park
- Go snorkeling and swimming in the coral reefs
- Check out the popular Dolly Beach
61. Cocos Islands, Australia
Cocos Islands, also known as Keeling Islands, are an island group of 27 islands in the Indian Ocean. This remote territory of Australia is well-known for its white-sand beaches, lagoons, and palm trees. Even more, it is a great place to explore a unique culture — that of the Cocos Malay people who inhabit the island.
Popular things to do in Cocos
- Pulu Keeling National Park is a must-see for its bird colonies and shipwreck
- Check out Direction Island and its famous, serene, and beautiful white-sand beach
- Swim and tour one of the many unique lagoons
60. Madagascar, East Africa
Madagascar is a large island off the eastern coast of Africa – in fact, it is the fourth-largest island country in the world. With its size, there is pretty much everything that you could ever want in an island. Whether you’re looking for a secluded getaway, a vacation filled with hikes and adventure, or a mixture of the two, you can find it here.
Popular things to do in Madagascar
- Avenue of the Baobabs is a famous stretch where you can see tons of the Baobab tree
- Go hiking in Tsingy de Bemaraha National Park and see the unique rock formations
- Take a trip through the rainforest in Ranomafana National Park
59. Guanaja, Honduras
The sister island of the popular Roatan island is Guanaja, an incredible island in Honduras. Guanaja is located off the northern coast of the mainland and is a part of the Bay Islands. Its untouched and well-preserved natural beauty, along with its unique town feel gives you plenty of reason to visit the island. Guanaja is known to be a Caribbean Venice, as it is home to colorful buildings packed together, surrounded by canals. Whether you go to see that, relax on the beaches, go on a hike, or snorkel, you’re sure to enjoy your time there.
Popular things to do in Guanaja
- Take a boat tour through the canals and the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef
- Snorkel, swim, and dive in the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef
- Hike through its national marine parks and forest reserves
58. Pemba Island, Tanzania
Part of Tanzania’s Zanzibar archipelago is Pemba Island, an island that will teach you the art of switching off. Though the island has around 500,000 inhabitants, there are rarely more than a few dozen tourists visiting. If you are looking for an authentic remote trip, this is the island for you. On Pemba Island, you can expect to be overwhelmed by untouched natural beauty and welcomed by friendly locals.
Popular things to do in Pemba
- Swim or fish in Chake Chake Harbour
- Visit the mangroves, swamps, and forests
- Visit one of the many clove plantations
57. Corn Islands, Nicaragua
Corn Islands are two islands located off the eastern coast of Nicaragua, in the Caribbean Sea. While you may have never heard of them, Corn Islands are a popular destination for surfers and backpackers who were already in Nicaragua and were directed toward the Corn Islands by a local or fellow traveler. They are the définition of “off-the-beaten-path,” and offer visitors an authentic, stunning experience.
Popular things to do in Corn Islands
- Surf and snorkel – enjoy the chill surfing vibes and amazing marine life
- Take diving lessons for a very affordable price
- Relax with the friendly locals at a beach bar, on a boat, or wherever else
56. Coiba Island, Panama
Located off the Pacific Coast of Panama is Coiba Island, a small island in the Gulf of Chiriqui. Coiba Island is a marine preserve as well as a lush, beachy island, known for its unique marine life and jungle animals. If you want to snorkel, dive, and hike your way to diverse wildlife, this is the place for you. Even if you don’t, consider giving it a visit for its turquoise waters and relaxed beaches.
Popular things to do in Coiba
- Snorkel or dive your way to diverse marine life, including both whales and hammerhead sharks
- Take a hike through the rainforest
- Relax at one of the many beaches on the coast
55. Tortuga Island, Costa Rica
Accessible by boat from mainland Costa Rica is Tortuga Island, an island with amazing beaches and lush forests that make the extra step worth the visit. Well-known for its forests and snorkeling, you can expect to see incredible wildlife on this island, including dolphins, octopuses, monkeys, and more. Additionally, Tortuga Island makes a great day trip if you don’t have too much extra time while in Costa Rica.
Popular things to do in Tortuga
- Go snorkeling or scuba diving
- Take a boat tour around the island
- Try out a hike or walking trail in the forests
54. Vieques, Puerto Rico
Vieques, Puerto Rico is a small island off Puerto Rico’s coast. Located in the Caribbean, Vieques is known for its culture, wild horses, and bioluminescent microorganisms, on top of its stunning beaches. As it is a less well-known Caribbean destination, there’s a good chance that you’ll find peace and quiet while in Vieques. Then, when you’re ready for some excitement, you can head on over to the mainland.
Popular things to do in Vieques
- Visit Bioluminescent Bay
- Tour Fuerte de Vieques, a 19th-century fort and museum
- Visit Vieques National Wildlife Refuge to see the wild horses
53. St Kitts & Nevis, Caribbean
Another great option in the Caribbean is St Kitts and Nevis, two islands that make up a country. These islands are located in between the Caribbean and the Atlantic Ocean, giving them a beautiful and unique environment. Both of the islands are filled with culture and activities, as well as lots of spots to enjoy the sun and sand. St Kitts is more lively while Nevis has more of a Caribbean island vibe, so you can pick your destination accordingly.
Popular things to do in St Kitts & Nevis
- Hike Mount Liamuiga Volcano
- Check out one of the many sugar plantation ruins
- Visit Frigate Bay, an island cove with beautiful beaches and fun bars
52. Grenada, Caribbean
Grenada is a country and island group in the Caribbean, located to the northeast of Venezuela. Its largest island, Grenada, is the main tourist island, though you can and should visit the others. It’s known for its beaches, nutmeg plantations, 18th-century remains, and tropical vibes. It’s also known for its amazing resorts and nightlife. Win-win for your calm, cultural, and fun getaway.
Popular things to do in Grenada
- Visit Grenada’s main beach, Grand Anse Beach
- Tour the Nutmeg plantation at the Belmont Estate
- Check out Grand Etang Lake
51. Niue Island, South Pacific
Niue Island is one of the smallest and most remote nations in the world. Located about 1500 miles northeast of New Zealand, it’s a tropical gem that most people don’t even know exist. To give you more context, it’s located in the center of Samoa, Tonga, and the Cook Islands. Temperatures range from 70°F – 85°F year-round. If you’re searching for a remote tropical destination that’s filled with adventure, check out Niue.
Popular things to do in Niue
- Swim at Avaiki Cave
- Walk the Togo Chasm
- Snorkel at the Limu Pools
50. Ouvéa, New Caledonia
Ouvéa is a small island located in the South Pacific, northeast of Australia. It’s an Overseas French Territory, known for its beautiful white-sand beaches and untouched landscapes. If you haven’t heard of Ouvéa, you should definitely add it to your bucket list.
Popular things to do in Ouvéa
- Sail to ‘Pleiades du Nord’ for incredible snorkeling
- Visit their shark nursery on the northern end of the island
- Swim in the blue hole of Hanawa (often where sea turtles are spotted)
49. Aitutaki, Cook Islands
Aitutaki is one of the Cook Islands in the South Pacific Ocean. It’s located north of Rarotonga (the most visited island in the Cook Islands). With only about 1800 people living here, it’s a tiny island most common among honeymooners. They even have a beautiful overwater bungalow resort, called Aitutaki Lagoon Private Island Resort. (worth checking out).
In the lagoon and surrounding reef, there’s a vast amount of marine wildlife, making it a perfect island for snorkeling.
It’s made up of three main parts…
- The main island
- A crystal clear lagoon
- And a barrier reef
Popular things to do in Aitutaki
- Hike Mount Maungapu for a beautiful view of Aitutaki
- Paddleboard through the turquoise lagoon
- Take a boating cruise and go snorkeling
48. Rarotonga, Cook Islands
Briefly mentioned above, we have the most popular and largest of the Cook Islands, Rarotonga. Surrounding the island is a 20-mile round-the-island road, making transportation simple. Visit their tropical beaches, go scuba diving or climb one of their volcanic mountains.
Popular things to do in Rarotonga
- Embark on the Cross Island Hike
- Go on a glass-bottom lagoon cruise
- Take a day trip to Aitutaki, snorkeling the lagoon
47. Ambergris Caye, Belize
Ambergris Caye is Belize’s largest island, located northeast of the mainland. With average temperatures ranging from 70°F – 80°F, it’s a perfect tropical getaway that’s fairly close to the USA. It has beautiful beaches and an environment that’s not overpopularized.
It’s well known for being near Belize’s barrier reef, which is the second-largest barrier reef in the world. If you’re looking for a low-key island vacation that has a bunch of beautiful snorkeling/diving spots, Ambergris Caye is a great option.
Popular things to do in Ambergris Caye
- Go snorkeling/diving at the Hol Chan Marine Reserve
- Visit the (not-so-secret) Secret Beach
- Shop at the famous Belizean Arts gallery in San Pedro
46. Magnetic Island, Australia
Magnetic Island is located about 5 miles off the northeastern coast of Australia in Queensland. Its accessibility to mainland Australia makes it the perfect destination for a short beach trip.
You can take a 20-35 minute ferry from Townsville. From hostels to luxury resorts, this is a must-visit if you find yourself in Northeastern Australia.
Popular things to do in Magnetic Island
- Discover World War II forts at the National Park
- Take a horseback ride on the beach
- Watch the beautiful sunset at West Point
45. Perhentian Islands, Malaysia
The Perhentian Islands are a group of islands located off the coast of Kuala Besut, Malaysia. Though they aren’t as popular as the main tourist destinations in Malaysia, they have a good mixture of activities and relaxation. The two main islands are Perhentian Besar and Perhentian Kecil. You can snorkel, sunbathe, or hike the many trails found on the islands.
Popular things to do in Perhentian
- Hike through the lush tropical jungle
- Look for turtles at Turtle Sanctuary Beach
- Relax at Long beach located on Perhentian Kecil
44. Exuma, The Bahamas
A district of The Bahamas, Exuma is a group of over 365 islands, also known as cays. Great Exuma and Little Exuma, are two of the main destinations. They’re known for shallow, turquoise sandbars and world-famous swimming pigs. Whichever cays you choose, you’ll be on a beautiful island enjoying the Bahamian sun.
Popular things to do in Exuma
- Visit the swimming pigs at Pig Beach
- Grab a drink at Chat ‘N’ Chill Beach Bar
- Explore Coco Plum Beach during low tide
43. Culebra, Puerto Rico
Culebra is a small island located off the northeastern coast of Puerto Rico. It’s known for its crystal clear beaches and variety of marine life. A must-visit is Flamenco Beach, a long stretch of white sand with turquoise waters on one side and tree-covered hills on the other. You can take a cheap ferry from Fajardo to access Culebra.
Popular things to do in Culebra
- Visit Culebra’s Museum of History
- Snorkel at the incredibly tropical Flamenco Beach
- Escape the crowds and take a boat tour with Culebra VIP & East
42. Ko Samui, Thailand
Ko Samui is Thailand’s second-largest island, located off its eastern coast. Known for its beaches, nightlife and warm climate, Ko Samui is one of the best tropical destinations for families, friends, and couples. Whether you’re searching for a budget vacation or luxury getaway, you can find it all in Ko Samui.
Popular things to do in Ko Samui
- Hang out at Chaweng Beach
- Go on a four-wheeling safari jungle tour
- Explore Mu Koh Angthong National Marine Park
41. Anna Maria Island, Florida
Anna Maria Island is a fun mix of both city and beach, located on Florida’s Gulf Coast. If you’re the type of beach vacationer who wants to shop, eat, and go to the beach, this is the perfect place for you. Anna Maria Island gives off a small town beach vibe that’s perfect for your next family vacation.
Popular things to do in Anna Maria
- Swim and relax at Manatee Beach Park
- Explore the island on bikes
- Take a walk at Bean Point
40. Moorea, French Polynesia
Moorea is apart of French Polynesia, located between the island of Tahiti and Huahine. It’s a short 15-minute plane ride from Tahiti. Snorkeling is a popular activity and you can often spot stingrays, sharks and sea turtles. While known for its breathtaking beaches, Moorea also has beautiful volcanic mountains that you can hike. And if you’re searching for authentic overwater bungalows, this is one of the best places to find them.
Popular things to do in Moorea
- Help the Coral Gardeners restore Moorea’s coral reefs
- Go on a boat snorkeling tour
- Take an ATV tour
39. Palau, Oceania
Located in the Pacific Ocean is an archipelago of 500+ islands, known as Palau. There are a variety of landscapes on the islands, ranging from stunning beaches to palm tree-lined forests. They’re known for incredible diving, especially at its world-famous Jelly Fish Lake.
Popular things to do in Palau
- Swim at the Jelly Fish Lake
- Explore the tropical Long Beach
- Take a diving tour around the Rock Islands
38. San Blas Islands, Panama
The San Blas Islands are a group of over 370 islands located off the coast of Panama. If you’re into island hopping, this is the perfect destination for you. You can hop in between the San Blas islands, or start in Panama and sail to Colombia. And of course, there are a bunch of beautiful beaches, and activities to do along the way.
Popular things to do in San Blas
- Go on an island-hopping snorkeling tour
- Take a tour through the Indigenous Guna VIllage
37. Miyakojima, Okinawa
Miyako Island, Japan (Miyakojima) is located in-between Okinawa Island and the Yaeyama Islands. It has some of the most beautiful tropical beaches in the world. A great place for snorkeling and diving. It’s a popular tourist destination due to the mixture of urban city and island life vibes.
Popular things to do in Miyakojima
- Visit the mysterious Toriike Pond
- Check out the longest free bridge, Irabu Ohashi
- Climb the Higashi Hennazaki Lighthouse for a beautiful view
36. Roatan, Honduras
A small island located off the northeastern coast of Honduras, in between the islands Útila and Guanaja. Roatan is one of the most tranquil tropical destinations that won’t break the bank. Known for its serenity, white sand beaches, coral reefs, and wildlife, it’s a great place to unwind.
Popular things to do in Roatan
- Relax at West Bay Beach
- Take an ATV or ziplining tour
- Tour the Manwakie Eco Nature Park
35. Anguilla, Caribbean
From Justin Bieber to Lebron James, Anguilla is a Caribbean destination that the celebs often visit. And it’s no surprise why. With beautiful tropical beaches to delicious restaurants, Anguilla is a tropical island worthy of your bucket list. Check out our must sea beaches in Anguilla (written by a local).
Popular things to do in Anguilla
- Visit Meads Bay (West end of the island)
- Tacos & margaritas at Olas Taco Bar
- Snorkel Little Bay marine park
34. Saipan, Northern Mariana Islands
Saipan is the largest and most well known of the Northern Mariana Islands. A part of the United States commonwealth, it’s located northeast of Guam in the Western Pacific. Though it’s the largest of the NMI, it still will only take you about an hour to travel the entire island via car. It’s known for its gorgeous beaches, mountains, golfing and scuba diving. It’s one of the best tropical destinations for adventurers.
Popular things to do in Saipan
- Scubadive a World War II shipwreck
- Visit the historical suicide cliff
- Snorkel the grotto cave
33. Whitsunday Islands, Australia
Between Queensland and the Great Barrier Reef lie the Whitsunday Islands, a group of 74 tropical islands in Australia. Complete with stunning beaches, rainforests, and many other activities. Most of the islands are national parks, however, there are a couple of nearby island resorts that are conveniently located.
Popular things to do in Whitsunday
- Explore at Whitehaven Beach
- Stay at an underwater reef suite
- Hike the trails at Hill Inlet
32. Montego Bay, Jamaica
Is the resort life what you’re looking for? Then Montego Bay, Jamaica is a perfect option for you. Filled with tropical beaches, golf courses, water sport activities, and even an amusement park, Montego Bay is great for every type of traveler. Whether you’re searching for an all-inclusive or boutique resort, they’ve got you covered.
Popular things to do in Montego Bay
- Go rafting down the Martha Brae river
- Golf at the world-famous Cinnamon Hill Golf Club
- Horseback ride at the Half Moon Equestrian Centre
31. Turks and Caicos Islands, Caribbean
The Turks and Caicos Islands are a British Overseas Territory located in the Caribbean. They consist of 40 low-lying islands surrounded by coral reefs, turquoise waters, and uninhabited cays. There are seven main islands, the most popular being Providenciales. Check out our Turks & Caicos travel guide before planning your next vacation.
Popular things to do in Turks & Caicos
- Snorkel at Smith’s Reef
- Relax at the beautiful Grace Bay Beach
- Go on an excursion with Big Blue Collective
30. Varadero, Cuba
Varadero is a beach town in northern Cuba, spanning the 12-mile Hicacos Peninsula. Along the 12-mile stretch are several resorts and spas. If you want an affordable tropical beach vacation in Cuba, this is the spot for you.
Popular things to do in Varadero
- Explore Josone Park
- Swim at Saturno Cave
- Visit the Varahicacos Ecological Reserve
29. Cayman Islands, Caribbean
The Cayman Islands are a British Overseas Territory, made up of three large islands…
- Grand Cayman
- Cayman Brac
- Little Cayman
Located in the Caribbean, they’re a popular destination known for fishing, snorkeling, and scuba diving. The most popular island is Grand Cayman, whereas Cayman Brac has more for the adventurers. Little Cayman is the smallest and quietest of the three.
Popular things to do in Cayman
- Walk along Seven Mile Beach
- Go for a hike on the Mastic Trail
- Go bird watching at Booby Pond Nature Reserve
28. Raja Ampat Islands, Indonesia
The Raja Ampat Islands are located in West Papua, Indonesia. They’re made up of hundreds of islands, covered in tropical jungles and lined with mesmerizing beaches. Raja Ampat is home to over 540 different types of coral, making it a popular spot for snorkelers and divers. To get to these remote islands, you’ll either have to take a flight to Waisai or a ferry from Sorong.
Popular things to do in Raja Ampat
- Go diving at Cape Kri
- Take a speedboat to Pulau Wayag
- Hike to the top of Pianemo Island
27. Isla Mujeres, Mexico
Famous for its tranquil tropical feeling, Isla Mujeres is an island located in southern Mexico off the coast of Cancun. Though it’s close to Cancun, it has a much more laid back vibe. While you can indulge in the beaches, water sports, and other activities, you shouldn’t miss out on visiting the ancient Mayan ruins.
Popular things to do in Isla Mujeres
- Visit the Ancient Mayan ruins
- Relax at Playa Norte (North Beach)
- Dive at the MUSA (Underwater Museum of Art)
26. St Lucia, Caribbean
St Lucia is both a country and an island in the Caribbean, located north of Venezuela. It’s well known for its dramatic mountains (the Pitons), as well as its nightlife, volcanic beaches, and rainforests. The north end is most popular for tourists to stay, whereas the south end is closest to the airport.
Popular things to do in St Lucia
- Hike the Tet Paul Nature Trail
- Take a mud bath at the Sulphur Springs
- Hit the nightlife scene at the Rodney Bay strip
25. El Nido, Palawan, Philippines
Located on Palawan Island, El Nido is a municipality in the western Philippines. Visitors go to enjoy the pristine white sand beaches, as well as the various dive sites and lagoons. Its jagged cliffs contrasting against the turquoise sea, make for a picturesque view. Easily one of the best tropical destinations in the Philippines.
Popular things to do in El Nido
- Hike to the Taraw Peak
- Visit the secret lagoon beach
- Stay in an overwater bungalow at El Nido Resorts
24. Seychelles, East Africa
Situated in the Indian Ocean, Seychelles is an archipelago of 115 islands off the coast of East Africa. They islands fall under two main groups…
- The Inner Islands (43)
- The Outer Islands (72)
From their rare marine wildlife to the smooth granite rocks, Seychelles is a tropical destination worth visiting. Their official tourism website even put together some great custom itineraries for different types of travelers.
Popular things to do in Seychelles
- Visit the Tempio Hindu
- Hike the Morne Blanc Trail
- Take a guided tour to Anse Marron
23. Reunion Island, East Africa
Reunion Island is located off the southeastern coast of Africa, just east of Madagascar. The island has diverse natural scenery, including volcanoes, rainforests, coral reefs, and beaches. It’s most famous attraction being Piton de la Fournaise, which is one of the most active volcanoes in the world (peaking at 8,635 ft).
Popular things to do in Reunion
- Hike the trails of Piton de la Fournaise
- Go on a Segway all-terrain tour
- Visit the Kelonia turtle center
22. Guadeloupe, Caribbean
Guadeloupe is a French overseas territory in the Caribbean, located between Dominica and Antigua. You may have heard of its unique shape, which resembles a butterfly. Guadeloupe is popular for its beaches, sugarcane fields, and volcanoes. With an average temperature ranging from 75°F to 85°F, it’s one of the best Caribbean destinations.
Popular things to do in Guadeloupe
- Walk along the Trace des Ruisseaux
- Go on a whale-watching excursion
- Hike the La Soufriere volcano
21. Gili Trawangan, Indonesia
Gili Trawangan is the largest of the three Gili Islands in Indonesia, located off the coast of Lombok. It’s often referred to as the party island, filled with bars, restaurants, and guesthouses. It makes for a lively vacation destination, though you can always find some time to relax on the beach.
Popular things to do in Gili Trawangan
- Go on a scuba diving excursion
- Take a snorkeling tour around the 3 Gili Islands
- Watch the beautiful sunset at Hotel Ombak Sunset
20. Curaçao, Caribbean
Located north of Venezuela, Curaçao is a Dutch Caribbean island located in between Aruba and Bonaire. It’s a great island if you’re interested in colonial architecture, as the capital Willemstad is known for that. The island itself is also known for its beaches, huge coral reef, and diverse marine life.
Popular things to do in Curaçao
- Snorkeling at Blue Bay Beach
- Visit the capital of Curaçao, Willemstad
- Go on a scooter, underwater Aquafari tour
Tired of white sand beaches? Then Bermuda’s pink sand beaches are the place for you. Bermuda is an Overseas British Territory located southeast of the United States in the Atlantic Ocean. Along with the pink sand beaches, Bermuda is known for its distinct history and culture.
Popular things to do in Bermuda
- Explore the Crystal Caves
- Take a dip at Blue Hole Park
- Relax and snorkel at Horseshoe Bay
18. Zanzibar, East Africa
Zanzibar, also known as Unguja, is an island located off the eastern coast of Africa. It’s a semi-autonomous region of Tanzania and home to a mixture of Islamic/African culture. You can either take a plane or ferry to get to Zanzibar. A ferry being a smoother ride unless you get seasick.
Popular things to do in Zanzibar
- Visit Nakupenda Beach
- Go on a snorkeling excursion
- Explore the culture of Stone Town
17. Formentera, Spain
The smallest of the Balearic Islands, Formentera is an island that belongs to Spain. More commonly known for the parties is its neighbor, Ibiza. If you’re looking for beautiful Spanish waters and beaches, but a quieter vacation, Formentera is a great spot for you.
Popular things to do in Formentera
- Relax at Ses Illetes Beach
- Visit Barbaria Lighthouse
- Explore the island on a bike
16. Viti Levu, Fiji
Located to the northeast of Australia is Viti Levu, Fiji’s largest island. It’s well known for its mountainous landscape that’s surrounded by beautiful beaches. Viti Levu is a great starting point to visit Fiji, as it’s home to the capital and Fiji’s main airport.
Popular things to do in Viti Levu
- Take a visit to Cloud 9 Fiji
- Go on a snorkeling tour to Beqa Lagoon
- Explore Castaway Island where Castaway was filmed
15. Boracay, Philippines
Boracay is an island in the Philippines, located in the center of the country. In Boracay, you’ll find a mixture of beaches, water sports, coral reefs, shipwrecks, and more… Pretty much everything you could ask for in a tropical destination.
Popular things to do in Boracay
- Check out Willy’s Rock
- Go cliff jumping at Ariel’s Point
- Experience the interactive Motag Living Museum
14. Key West, Florida
What is an island, a city, and Florida’s most southernmost point? You guessed it, Key West! It’s a great tropical destination, especially if you don’t want to travel outside of the USA. The crystal clear water and coral reefs, make Key West a great destination for snorkeling.
Popular things to do in Key West
- Visit Ernest Hemingway’s Home
- Take a ferry to Dry Tortugas National Park
- Go rum tasting at Papa’s Pilar Rum Distillery
13. Mauritius, East Africa
Mauritius (also known as the Republic of Mauritius), is an Indian Ocean island located off the southeastern coast of Africa (about 500 miles East of Madagascar). Whether you’re looking for tropical beaches that are lined with reefs, or a place to go hiking, you should definitely check out Mauritius.
Popular things to do in Mauritius
- Go on a Blue Safari Submarine tour
- Go hiking at Black River Gorges National Park
- Visit the Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam Botanical Garden
12. Aruba, Caribbean
18 miles north of Venezuela, you’ll find Aruba, a Dutch constituent country located in the Caribbean. Aruba is a popular tropical destination, as it’s known to be one of the safest Caribbean countries. It has beautiful beaches, a stunning national park, and a variety of other activities. Aruba is easily one of the best tropical islands to vacation, especially since the weather is consistent year-round.
Popular things to do in Aruba
- Relax at Eagle Beach
- Explore Arikok National Park
- Watch flamingos on Renaissance Island
11. Barbados, Caribbean
Barbados is an independent British Commonwealth nation located off the northeastern coast of Venezuela in the Caribbean. The capital is home to colonial-style architecture and is a popular cruise-ship port. Around the island, you can visit beautiful beaches, caves, gardens, and get a taste for old British culture.
Popular things to do in Barbados
- Take a dip at Carlisle Bay
- Go on a catamaran snorkeling tour
- Go on a tour through Harrison’s Cave
10. Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
Punta Cana is located at the easternmost tip of the Dominican Republic, bordering both the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean. Many spring breakers rush to Punta Cana in March, so if you’re looking for a party atmosphere, that’s the time to go. Otherwise, you’ll find serenity in its clear waters and large beaches year-round.
Popular things to do in Punta Cana
- Go on a monkey tour
- Relax and swim at Bavaro Beach
- Swim at the crystal clear waters of Hoyo Azul
9. Tulum, Mexico
Tulum is a Mexican town on the edge of the Yucatan Peninsula, bordering the Caribbean coast. While it definitely has beautiful tropical beaches, Tulum is famous for its well-preserved Mayan ruins, mangroves, and cenotes (AKA natural sinkholes that you can swim in).
Popular things to do in Tulum
- Relax at Paradise Beach
- Explore the Tulum Mayan Ruins
- Swim at Cenotes Dos Ojos or Cenotes Sac Actun
8. Sardinia, Italy
Often flocked to by the celebs, Sardinia is an Italian island in the Meditteranean Sea. Its location makes it easily accessible from Italy, France, Spain, and northern Africa. The jagged mountains contrasting against the tropical sea, make for scenery as you’ve never seen before.
Popular things to do in Sardinia
- Snorkel at Cala Goloritze
- Relax and swim at La Pelosa Beach
- Explore the cave at Capo Caccia Vertical Cliffs
7. Maragogi, Brazil
Often referred to as the Caribbean of Brazil, Maragogi is a beach town located on the eastern coast. This is a great place for snorkeling because of it’s protected coral reefs. Its tropical shallow lagoons will take your breath away. If you find yourself thinking about traveling to Brazil, you should definitely consider Maragogi.
Popular things to do in Maragoi
- Relax at Xareu Beach
- Take an excursion to the Gales Marine Reserve
6. Cancun, Mexico
Our tropical destinations list wouldn’t be complete without Cancun, Mexico. Located on the Yucatan Peninsula, just north of Tulum. From it’s thriving nightlife scene to its all-inclusive family resorts, Cancun has options for every type of traveler. Similar to Punta Cana, it’s one of the most popular Caribbean destinations for spring breakers.
Popular things to do in Cancun
- Swim at the Cenote Ik kil
- Relax and swim at Playa Delfines
- Visit the Chichen Itza Mayan Ruins
5. Maui, Hawaii
Last on our Hawaiian island list is Maui, Hawaii, another great island if you’re looking for nature and serenity. Maui is known to be much calmer than Oahu, but just as beautiful as all of the other islands. Well-known for its active and dormant volcanoes, 30-miles of beaches, and pools and waterfalls visiting Maui will make you feel like you’ve entered a dream.
Popular things to do in Maui
- Visit Haleakala National park to hike, see pools and waterfalls, and climb a volcano
- Sunbathe at the beaches, such as the beautiful Kapalua Beach and Kaanapali Beach
- Check out all that the Hana Highway Region has to offer
4. Tahiti, French Polynesia
The largest island in French Polynesia is Tahiti, located between Australia and South America. Tahiti is shaped like the number eight and divided into two islands…
- Tahiti Nui (Western Side)
- Tahiti Iti (Eastern Side)
It’s famous for its black sand beaches, waterfalls, crystal clear lagoons, and volcanoes. When most people think of the holy grail of tropical destinations, Tahiti usually comes to mind.
Popular things to do in Tahiti
- Check out James Norman’s Hall House
- Learn about pearls at the Robert WAN Pearl Museum
- Visit Fautaua Waterfall (One of the largest in the world)
3. Bora Bora, French Polynesia
Bora Bora is a French Polynesian island, located between Australia and South America. It’s surrounded by an incredible turquoise lagoon and coral reef, making it a popular destination for tropical lovers. It’s one of the most visited places amongst honeymooners because of it’s out of this world scenery and serenity.
Popular things to do in Bora Bora
- Go on a lagoon snorkel tour
- Sightseeing at Mount Otemanu
- Swim with sharks and rays at the Lagoonarium
2. Bali, Indonesia
Bali is known for its volcanic mountains, rice fields, beaches, and of course, parties. It’s home to various religious sites and famous for its yoga/meditation retreats. It’s a great destination for those who like to do more than just relax on the beach. Oh, and not to mention it’s one of the cheapest tropical destinations in the world.
Popular things to do in Bali
- Soak up the views at Sekumpul Waterfalls
- Go to Penida Island and explore Diamond Beach
- Visit the Instagram-worthy Tegalalang Rice Terrace
1. The Maldives
Number one on this list is the Maldives, a small island nation located in the Arabian Sea of the Indian Ocean. The Maldives is known for its white-sand beaches, warm waters, and friendly locals. If you’re thinking about traveling here, check out our Maldives travel guide which goes over the best time to visit, transportation tips and more. Oh and not to mention their incredible underwater restaurant.
Besides it being mentioned by hundreds of our followers, it was the number one most searched destination on Google in the USA. If you’re looking for one of the most tropical places on earth, look no further.
Popular things to do in Maldives
- Search for bioluminescent plankton
- Stay in a gorgeous overwater bungalow
- Sleep under the stars in a beach bubble tent
And there you have it, the best tropical destinations in the world. Hopefully, you got some new ideas for your upcoming trips! Safe travels.