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The Most Amazing Islands in the World
Tuesday, 27 May 2008

One in every ten people in the world lives on an island! There is even a word for a "craze or a strong attraction to islands" - islomania! Here are listed the most amazing, most wonderful, most unusual, most beautiful, most attractive and the scariest islands in the world! Whether you have islomania or not - you will find this list really amazing! Welcome to the world of islands!

The Most Amazing Islands in the World



1. Easter Island - The Most Mysterious Island

 Easter Island - The Most Mysterious Island

It is one of the most isolated islands in the world but 1200 years ago a double-hulled canoe filled with seafarers from a distant culture landed upon its shores. One of the world's most famous yet least visited archaeological sites, Easter Island is a small, hilly, now treeless island of volcanic origin. Located in the Pacific Ocean at 27 degrees south of the equator and some 2200 miles (3600 kilometers) off the coast of Chile. Sixty-three square miles in size and with three extinct volcanoes (the tallest rising to 1674 feet), the island is, technically speaking, a single massive volcano rising over ten thousand feet from the Pacific Ocean floor. The oldest known traditional name of the island is Te Pito o Te Henua, meaning "The Center of the World". Over the centuries that followed a remarkable society developed in isolation on the island. For reasons still unknown they began carving giant statues out of volcanic rock. These monuments, known, as "moai" are some of the most incredible ancient relics ever discovered. The people of Easter Island called themselves the Rapa Nui. Where did they come from and why did they disappear? Science has learned much about the enigma of Easter Island and has put to rest some of the more bizarre theories, but questions and controversies remain.

2. Alcatraz - The Prison Island

Alcatraz - The Prison Island

Alcatraz Island, sometimes informally referred to as simply Alcatraz or by its pop-culture name, The Rock, is a small island located in the middle of San Francisco Bay in California, United States. It served as a lighthouse, then a military fortification, then a military prison followed by a federal prison until 1963, when it became a national recreation area.

Because of its natural isolation in the middle of a bay, surrounded by cold water and strong sea currents, Alcatraz was considered by the U.S. Army as an ideal location for holding captives. The maximum number of inmates was 302.

Despite the strict rules for criminals, Alcatraz primarily functioned in a minimum-security capacity. The types of work assignments given to inmates changed depending on the prisoners, their classification, and how responsible they were. Many inmates worked as general servants who cooked, cleaned, and attended to household works for the families who lived on the island. In many cases, select prisoners were given the responsibility to care for the children of staff members.

Due to rising operational costs because of its location, the War Department decided to close this famous prison in 1934, and it was subsequently taken over by the Department of Justice, and later became the famous federal prision and finally a recreation area.

3. Bishop Rock - The Smallest Island (according to the Guiness Book of Records)

Bishop Rock - The Smallest Island

It is a small rock at the westernmost tip of the Isles of Scilly known for its lighthouse. The rocks rise sheer from a depth of 45m and are exposed to the full force of the Atlantic Ocean making this one of the most hazardous and difficult sites for the building of a lighthouse. The rock acts as the barrier between the British Isles and the Atlantic Ocean. The original lighthouse was begun in 1847, but was washed away before it could be completed. The present building was completed in 1858 and was first lit on 1 September of that year. Bishop Rock was converted to automatic operation during 1991 with the last keepers leaving the lighthouse on 21 December 1992.

4. Sri Lanka - The Most Magical Island

Sri Lanka - The Most Magical Island

Sri Lanka (formerly known as Ceylon) is a tropical island lying close to the southern tip of India and near the Equator. Sri Lanka Culture is fascinating. The Yaksha and Naga tribes Civilized before 300 B.C. using agriculture and irrigation, Nourished from the Buddhism in early 2nd Century B.C. and also influenced by Indian invasions and going through Portuguese, Dutch and British rule, Sri Lankan Culture is diverse like it's Natural Heritage. Known as the Smiling People though out the world Sri Lankans enjoy a unique lifestyle that's humble, artistic, entertaining and touching someone's heart with Sri Lanka hospitality known for centuries. The intimate connection between Society and Buddhism as well as traditional forms of Art, Dance and Music are the fusion of the Sri Lanka Culture. And what about miracles and mysteries - the island of Sri Lanka has been a favorite haunt of aliens, extra terrestrials, gods, devas, angels, sky dwellers, demons, deities whichever way you describe them. The chronicles, traditions, folklore, prehistoric cave drawings, archaeological evidence and ancient traveler's records testify that there have been strange beings living in this island from time immemorial. There were and there are Mountains, Hills, buildings and even plants with full of mysteries, power and wisdom which are beyond human understanding.

5. The World - The Most Amazing Man-Made Islands

The World - The Most Amazing Man-Made Islands

The World is a man-made archipelago of 300 islands constructed in the shape of a world map and located 4 kilometres (2.5 miles) off the coast of Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The World is one of several artificial island projects being constructed in Dubai, others being the Palm Islands. Like the other artificial island projects, The World is built primarily using sand dredged from the sea. Each island in the archipelago ranges from about 14,000 m² to 42,000 m². The distance between each island will be an average of 100 metres. The entire development covers an area of 9 km in length and 6 km in width, surrounded by an oval breakwater. Roughly 232 km of shoreline has been created. The overall development cost of The World was estimated as 14 billion USD. As for the individual islands, prices range between 15 and 50 million USD. One island is still for sale at a price of 250 million USD.

The project was unveiled on 6 May 2003 by Sheikh Mohammed. Dredging began four months later in September 2003. By January 2008, 60% of the islands had been sold, 20 of which were bought in the first four months of 2007. On 10 January 2008, the final stone on the breakwater was laid, completing initial development. The next phase of the project is to hand over the individual islands to developers.

6. Tiny Island of Sark - The Last Feudal Island

Tiny Island of Sark - The Last Feudal Island

The island of Sark is only three miles long and one and a half mile wide making it the smallest of the Channel islands of which there are 4. The tiny island of Sark in the English Channel has been known as the Western world's last bastion of feudalism. Sark was considered the last feudal state in Europe. Formally, the Seigneur, the highest official on the Island, holds it as a fiefdom, reenfeoffing the land owners on the island with their respective parcels. The political consequences of this construction were abolished in the recent years, particularly remarkable in the reform of the legislative body, Chief Pleas, which was finished in 2008.

This small island has 40 miles of the most beautiful coastline you could wish to see. Aside from the natural beauty that Sark offers one of the main reasons it is so relaxing is the absence of cars. This wonderful island lacks the noise and bustle of modern day life. People here get a round on bicycle or horse and cart. It is known as one of the most peaceful places in Britain-the police force is just one officer. It is almost like stepping back in time when you visit this tiny island. There is nothing but peace, tranquility, beautiful scenery and an abundance of wild flowers and sea birds.

7. Gunkanjima - The Most Forbidden Island

Gunkanjima - The Most Forbidden Island

Gunkanjima is one among 505 uninhabited islands in the Nagasaki Prefecture about 15 kilometers from Nagasaki itself. The island was populated from 1887 to 1974 as a coal mining facility. The island's most notable features are the abandoned concrete buildings and the sea wall surrounding it. It is known for its coal mines and their operation during the industrialization of Japan. Mitsubishi bought the island in 1890 and began the project, the aim of which was retrieving coal from the bottom of the sea. They built Japan's first large concrete building, a block of apartments in 1916 to accommodate their burgeoning ranks of workers, and to protect against typhoon destruction. In 1959, its population density was 835 people per hectare for the whole island, or 1,391 per hectare for the residential district, one of the highest population density ever recorded worldwide. As petroleum replaced coal in Japan in the 1960s, coal mines began shutting down all over the country, and Gunkanjima's mines were no exception. Mitsubishi officially announced the closing of the mine in 1974, and today it is empty and bare, which is why it's called the Ghost Island. Travel to Gunkanjima is currently prohibited.

8. Bouvet - The Remotest Uninhabited Island in the World

Bouvet - The Remotest Uninhabited Island in the World

Bouvet Island is an uninhabited sub-antarctic volcanic island in the South Atlantic Ocean. Is roughly 75 square miles of surface is mostly covered by glaciers and and very little survives on the island aside from moss, seals, seabirds and penguins. However, the island has been at the center of some peculiar mysteries. An early discoverer of the island documented second island nearby that was never seen again. In the 1960s an abandoned lifeboat was found on the island, though nothing was ever seen of its passenger. In the above satellite images, it can only be picked out by spotting disturbances in the weather patterns.

9. Tristan da Cunha - The Remotest Inhabited Island in the World

The Remotest Inhabited Island in the World

It is in the South Atlantic, 2575 km (1600 miles) south of St Helena, which is an island a few hundred kilometres (miles) off the coast of South Africa. Tristan da Cunha has no TV but it has one radio station. The population totals 242 and they only have 7 surnames (last names) between them, so they are all related. All Tristan families are farmers, owning their own stock. All land is communally owned. Livestock numbers are strictly controlled to conserve pasture and to prevent better off families accumulating wealth.

Tristan da Cunha

No outsiders are allowed to buy land or settle on Tristan. The islands' main source of foreign income is the lobster factory and the sale of stamps and coins to overseas collectors. Most people have dual occupations, often working for the local government. Many inhabitants have plots of land (at the patches) on which they grow potatoes.Tristan da Cunha does have a capital, called Edinburgh of the South Seas.

10. Bali - The Most Popular Island 2007

Bali - The Most Popular Island 2007

Bali, a tropical island in the Indonesian archipelago, is so picturesque and immaculate it could almost be a painted backdrop. It has rice paddies tripping down hillsides like giant steps, volcanoes soaring up through the clouds, dense tropical jungle, long sandy beaches, warm blue water, crashing surf and friendly people who don't just have a culture but actually live it. In Bali spirits come out to play in the moonlight, every night is a festival and even a funeral is an opportunity to have a good time.

Bali Island, the perfect holiday destination for all ages offers something for everyone. This tropical paradise has a unique blend of modern tourist facilities combined with wonderful shopping and a rich past and heritage. The Balinese people are proud of having preserved their unique Hindu culture against the advance of Islam, the dominant religion throughout Indonesia. This is still reflected in day to day life and can be seen in the numerous ceremonies, Balinese festivals and magnificent temples and palaces. Some of the best surfing beaches in the world can be found on the western side of the island whilst conversely the eastern side is a wonderful haven for families, with beautiful white sand beaches and gentle seas.

11. Cyprus - The Most Romantic Island

Cyprus - The Most Romantic Island

On the eastern end of the Mediterranean, the island of Cyprus is both European and Middle Eastern, Greek and Turkish. Cyprus is the third-largest island and one of the most popular tourist destinations in the Mediterranean, attracting over 2.4 million tourists per year. This island was once a center for the cult of Aphrodite, the place where the Greek goddess was supposedly born from the waves. Even today, locals say eternal youth will grace those who swim three times around a rock that protrudes from the sea. For all its Greek reminders, however, many call the cruise port of Limassol the "Paris of the Mediterranean" because of its European air, sidewalk cafes, and stylish atmosphere. A romantic spirit is also found in the villages of this island. Here life goes on as it has for centuries.

12. Java - The Most Populated Island

Java - The Most Populated Island

Java is an island of Indonesia and the site of its capital city, Jakarta. Once the centre of powerful Hindu kingdoms and the core of the colonial Dutch East Indies, Java now plays a dominant role in the economic and political life of Indonesia. Housing a population of 130 million in 2006, it is the most populous island in the world, ahead of the nation of Japan. Java is also one of the most densely populated regions on Earth. Java is crossed from east to west by a chain of mountains rising to 2,750 m/9,000 ft. Of these mountains, 112 are volcanic and 35 are active. Despite its large population and in contrast to the other larger islands of Indonesia, Java is comparatively homogeneous in ethnic composition. Only two ethnic groups are native to the island - the Javanese and Sundanese. A third group is the Madurese, who inhabit the island of Madura off the north east coast of Java, and have immigrated to East Java in large numbers since the 18th century. The Javanese comprise about two-thirds of the island's population, while the Sundanese and Madurese account for 20% and 10% respectively.

13. Seychelles - The # 1 Islands for Doing Nothing

Seychelles - The # 1 Islands for Doing Nothing

Maybe it was as an infant, a toddler,or a total slacker in high school. But at some point you were extraordinarily skilled at the art of doing nothing. Since then work, kids, and relationships have made you a master at multitasking. Shelve those responsibilities for a crash course in relaxation. So now you just need to visit Seychelles. Even the aerial view of this tropical paradise is relaxing: lush green island plop in the middle of a bright blue waters. But here is one instance where the view from the top pales in comparison with that from the bottom. Set foot on Seychelles, which overlooks the Indian ocean, and take in some of the rarest species of plants and wildlife in the world. Just relax and enjoy!

14. Ronde Island - The Most Expensive Private Island

Ronde Island - The Most Expensive Private Island

A 2000-acre emerald gem in stunning Grenada for sale.It can be yours just for $100 million. Beautiful topography of hills and small valleys, with several large well protected bays for yacht anchorage. Collectively miles of pristine beachfront and waterfront property. Isolated and untouched by development, fishing or run-off, this island archipelago's marine life is prolific and stunning. Superb visibility typically exceeds 100 feet, and turtles, large pelagics and green moray eels are common. Dramatic underwater topography includes breathtaking drop-offs over 'bottomless' vertical walls, coral-encrusted canyons - and even a swim-through cave which opens to an underground cavern decorated with stalactites and quartz crystals. Who said you can't buy a Paradise?;)

15. Greenland - The Largest Island

Greenland - The Largest Island

Greenland is the largest island in the world. Its northerly location, at the point where the Atlantic meets the Arctic Ocean, means that Greenland is surrounded principally by cold ocean currents, so the coasts are constantly being cooled. This, combined with the radiation of cold from the inland ice, gives Greenland its arctic climate.

The ice cap or inland ice covers 1,833,900 square km, equivalent to 85 percent of Greenland's total area, and extends 2,500 km (1,553 miles) from north to south and up to 1,000 km from east to west. At its center, the ice can be up to 3 km thick, representing 10 percent of the world's total fresh water reserves. If all the ice were to melt, the world's oceans would rise seven meters. Greenland is often associated with cold and darkness and it can, of course, get very cold. However, there is also plenty of light and, although the polar darkness often reigns (in Qaanaaq, the sun doesn't rise for a whole three months!), it is never totally dark. Greenland enjoys more hours of summer than anywhere down south, but the weather is nowhere near as warm, even though the light is much more intense. Greenland summers won't give you an all-over tan, but your face and neck will turn a beautiful shade of brown.


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