When it comes to the world’s best island holidays, we can help you choose the right one for you. You could be looking for the perfect island hotel for your honeymoon, somewhere to take your family, or searching for a stay with a foodie twist. We’ve travelled the world to get to know the best holiday islands and handpick the most luxurious places to stay, so read on...
Best island holidays for romance
The Maldives is hands-down our top choice for a romantic holiday or honeymoon. You can wake up in a luxurious overwater villa and watch the fish dart through the lagoon below; or stay in a beach bungalow, the view from your private deck stretching out towards the dazzling white sand and crystal clear warm water in front of you. From big islands such as Kuramathi Maldives with a choice of restaurants to tiny islands like Kandolhu with only a few rooms – and the most incredible service and castaway feel – we’re here to help you find the right one for you both. Come and chat to us and we can tell you about the most romantic experiences, such as having a candlelit dinner on a deserted island.
Best island holidays for families
Cyprus is one of the most welcoming islands for families and we’ve picked out hotels such as The Elysium where you can travel light if taking a baby – they can organise a pushchair, steriliser, baby bath – whatever you need to make your family holiday easy. Crete is also perfect for a holiday with a short flight, and Porto Elounda Golf & Spa Resort has its own splash park with slides, a Noah’s Ark with toddler sleeping areas and full-on children’s activities, including yoga sessions. Alternatively, we can book a villa holiday on one of the Greek islands if you want the independence of your own space and private pool; and long-haul recommendations include Kuramathi Maldives or one of the incredible all-inclusive resorts in Mauritius that welcomes families.
Best island holidays for foodies
Our Highlights of Sicily small group tour is a culinary island exploration, where you can try the best gelato, famous chocolate in Modica, renowned dessert wines in Marsala and wander around traditional food markets. All this mixed with Roman amphitheatres and seaside towns along the way. Our Highlights of Sardinia escorted small group tour also has a real focus on food and drink, and we’ve planned meals to ensure you get a true taste of the island, visiting local wineries, the best trattorias and the chance to have an al fresco lunch in the Supramonte highlands. The islands of Thailand are also a foodie paradise. Try Mom Tri’s Villa Royale on the island of Phuket, which has impressed the likes of the Hairy Bikers; and, in the Caribbean, Sandals Resorts offer fine dining, such as French cuisine with white-gloved service. Closer to home, IKOS Olivia on the island of Halkidiki offers an all-inclusive concept with Michelin-starred dining.
Best island holidays for activities
If days filled with sailing, windsurfing, tennis and mountain biking sound perfect, we can help you plan a Neilson activity holiday. Many are set on some of Greece’s lesser-known islands, such as Lesvos and Lemnos, giving you a chance to explore unspoilt Greek landscapes and make the most of the locals’ traditional hospitality. Further afield, Sri Lanka’s island activities include going on safari in one of the many national parks – Sri Lanka is one of the best places to spot leopards in the world and you can see herds of wild elephants roaming free. You can climb Sigiriya Rock Fortress for the most astounding views; and try your hand at tea picking in the rolling tea plantations in Nuwara Eliya. If you’re looking to recharge and be pampered, try The BodyHoliday in Saint Lucia. There is a 50-minute spa treatment included on each full day of your stay and fitness classes, personal sports tuition, watersports and diving is also included.
Best island holidays for culture
Bali isn’t all about the beach – the island is easy to explore and you’ll find stunning landscapes and friendly locals proud of their ancient culture. It’s not uncommon to see an elaborate religious ceremony; and you’ll spot daily offerings of fresh flowers decorating the streets. Head inland to Ubud, where you can discover art galleries, a thriving café culture and surrounding rice terraces; or the coastline, where you can photograph temples such as Tanah Lot, perched above the crashing waves. In Thailand, you can visit temples, giant Buddha statues and buzzing markets on many of the beautiful islands; or book one of our Japan tours and discover extreme contrasts with an expert guide, from futuristic Tokyo to the ancient temples, tea houses and geishas of Kyoto. If you’re looking for an island holiday in Europe, you could explore the cobblestone streets, Renaissance cathedrals and Baroque palaces of Malta.
Luxury island hotels and resorts
If total luxury is top of your wishlist, then try one of these incredible island hotels and resorts.