The travel experts at Leisure have curated a list of 13 top islands to visit in the US. These gorgeous islands stretch from Hawaii to Lowcountry with stunning cities, national parks, mountains, and rainforests. These islands are a treasure trove of biodiversity. You can explore them after the pandemic ends while adhering to the local government guidelines. So, without wasting any more time, let’s dive into the list.
The most popular area on the gorgeous island is Oak Bluffs, famous for its whimsical gingerbread houses built in the 19th century. There are several public parks, including Great Ocean park. If you add Martha’s Vineyard to your leisure vacations, you have to taste the chowder from the Chowder Company. There are five lighthouses along the clear and wide beaches, making Martha’s Vineyard among the top islands to visit in the US.
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Hilton Head Island is recognized as the best island in the US with serene beaches and natural beauty, as per Conde Nast Travelers. Every May to October, countless sea turtles visit this island. This is one of America’s favorite leisure vacations with 12 miles of pristine beaches. The locally-made handicrafts, bike trail, paddleboard, and world-class golf courses are among the top things to check out on the island. The Sea Pines resort is a classic spot for a family vacation.
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Block Island is located about 45 minutes from the mainland, enclosing 3 miles of beaches. The famous tourist attraction in Block Island is Mohegan Bluffs. These are clay cliffs that rise almost 200 feet above the sea. Charlestown beach is the perfect romantic spot to enjoy the sunset. North Light and South Light are the two historic lighthouses at the opposite ends of the island. It is an ideal place for biking, sailing, fishing, and hiking.
Galveston Island is situated an hour southeast of Houston. On a hot day, visit Schlitterbahn Waterpark, or take adventure rides on the tall swings and giant cartwheel of Pleasure Pier, which constitutes 16 rides. This is one of the top islands to visit in the US for its adventure activities. The Kemah Boardwalk, with its rides, is among the top weekend destinations. The most important feature here is the floating paddlewheel boat dinner cruise for luxury travelers.
Mount Desert Island houses the Cadillac mountain, one of the most popular hiking spots on the East Coast. The rays of the rising sun first touch the summit in the United States. One should not miss the town of Bar Harbor, the largest town in Mount Desert Island. It has a plethora of shops, restaurants, and celebrity residents. This explains why Mount Desert Island is one of the top islands to visit in the US. Acadia National Park preserves the wilderness inside its 47,000 acres; we need a whole day to experience it to the fullest.
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Amelia Island is popularly known as ‘Isle of Eight Flags’ as historically, French, Spain, and Mexican rebels staked their claim on this island. The palm-tree-lined, white sandy beaches are a relaxing spot for romantic evenings. Take a ride on the river cruise and get a view of alligators and manatees. This is one of the islands in the US where they allow horse riding. Amelia Island is among the top islands to visit in the US, thanks to its luxury resorts, numerous beaches, and golf courses.
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Golden Isles encloses four barrier islands: Jekyll Island, Little St.Simons Island, Sea Island, and St. Simons Island. These islands are home to many whales and preserve the migrating wildlife. The secluded beach views are perfect for bird watching. The luxurious five-star resorts offer delicious meals and great cocktails. Golden Isles is also home to loggerhead turtles once a year. The island offers nature at its best, making it one of the best picks for leisure vacations.
It is no surprise most of the top islands to visit in the US lie in Hawaii. Kauai receives rainfall almost every day. The splendid biodiversity in Kauai has made it among the most popular islands to see in the state. You shouldn’t miss Waimea Canyon State Park, which is often referred to as Pacific’s Grand Canyon, an excellent natural attraction site.
San Juan Island, which lies on the Northwest coast of Washington, attracts killer whales every year. You can explore the Whale Museum and the Museum of Arts. Lime Kiln Point State Park offers shore-based orca whale watching and a lighthouse to admire. This archipelago comprises activities like hiking, kayaking, and farm-to-table dining. If whale watching is something you would enjoy, San Juan is one of the top islands to visit in the US.
Oahu is the most visited Hawaii island, and hence it is called “The Gathering Place.” It is home to Chinatown, which will introduce you to a wide variety of food and culture. No traveler should miss out on Honolulu’s food and nightlife. North shore makes your mouth water with its garlic shrimps. You can also watch beautiful dolphins while sipping a Mai Tai at the local beach.
Maui, also known as ‘The Valley Isle,’ is the second-largest island in Hawaii. Maui is home to the Haleakala volcano and a national park. You can find paradise in Oheo Gulch waterfalls, accessed via scenic breezy Hana Highway. The 30-mile beach stretch is an excellent place for snorkelers and hikers. For people who love to explore underwater canyons and mosses, Maui is a top island to visit for its crystal clear water.
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Sandwiched between Naples and Everglades on the Gulf Coast, Marco Island is one of the top islands to visit in the US. Mango lovers should not miss this destination. The temperature rarely drops below 50 degrees which explains the gorgeous weather of the island. Take the kids along to pick shells from Tigertail Beach and South Beach for an ideal getaway.
The Channel Islands, an archipelago, is located off the coast of California. It is often known as the “Galapagos of North America.” The five of the eight islands come under the Channel Island National Park. It is best known for its camping adventures inside the National Park.