Craving an Island Escape? These Are the 12 Best Underrated Islands to Visit in 2019

Unsplash | Jeremy Bishop

Vacations are no longer just about going to an all-inclusive resort for the week and lounging in a beach chair while sipping on a few too many margaritas. While, yes, that is still amazing, getaways in 2019 are more about adventure and finding the road less traveled. It's an escape from your everyday life. It's venturing out into uncharted territory and seeing the world – really seeing it. No photo you take will validate the view because it's just that drop-dead gorgeous. Besides, taking mental pictures just for yourself is kind of better anyway, no?

If you're itching for an amazing escape that isn't overcrowded with tourists, we've rounded up our best underrated islands to visit this year. These islands offer a different perspective of the world that isn't seen enough — views that don't involve our phones, Facebook, Instagram, or clever captions that we text our friends for approval. Think bigger. These are the types of trips you'll be telling your kids about. Ready for the adventure? If your answer is yes, keep reading.


Mo’orea, French Polynesia

Referred to as the "Magical Island," it encapsulates a relaxed vibe and welcoming spirit just as the local Tahitians. With eight picturesque mountain peaks rising from it's translucent lagoon, visitors can explore these jagged volcanic mountains, sandy beaches, and winding rainforest.


Channel Islands National Park, California, USA

Hidden right in LA's backyard, visitors are a 45-minute boat ride away from secluded sea-cave kayaking, hiking along the highest elevations of the island, and snorkeling in the cove. The only place in the world where you can find the once endangered Island Fox is on this island — over 2,000 of them.


Gili Islands, Indonesia

Home to three tiny islands off the coast of Indonesia, each boasts sandy beaches, palm trees, and coral reefs offshore, including sea turtle sightings. Visitors can explore the underwater world, including ancient statues and a sunken ship at Wreck Point near Mentigi Beach. There's no motorized vehicles allowed on this island — a destination just as inexpensive and beautiful as Bali.


Crete, Greece

Crete is Greece's largest island, but not nearly as visited by tourists as much as Mykonos and Santorini. Known for their beautiful sand beaches and mountains, there's a wide range of activities for visitors. If you're into Greek Mythology, you can visit Odeon Cave, which was the birthplace of Zeus.


Isla Holbox, Mexico

This island that sits between the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico is a perfect Mexican getaway if you're looking for something less crowded than Cozumel. This laid-back island has no motorized vehicles and is filled with marine life such as sea turtles and beautiful beaches such as Punta Coco Beach.


Mergui Archipelago, Myranmar

Only accessible by tourism boats, these 800 islands are comprised of beautiful coral reefs and beaches. Referred to as "one of the last paradises on Earth," you can find yourself exploring uncharted waters and an undiscovered world.


Assateague Island National Seashore, Maryland, USA

Some call it a dream, where you can find hundreds of wild horses roaming the beach, and we agree. Visitors can explore beaches, salt marshes, forests, and camp, and explore the 19th-century Assateague Lighthouse.


Faroe Islands, Denmark

If you're not the tropical beach type, this unique group of 18 volcanic islands between Iceland and Norway is for you. You'll explore and hike through the island's mountains and steep coastal cliffs, which are all connected by road tunnels, ferries, and bridges.


Aleutian Islands, Alaska, USA

The Aleutian Islands are comprised of 14 large islands and 55 smaller islands, and they all scream adventure. With one-in-a-lifetime fishing excursions, ancient village sites, beaches, untamed landscapes, and active volcanoes, visitors will definitely not feel like they're in the U.S.


San Blas Islands, Panama

Run by the Kuna Indians, this archipelago is comprised of approximately 365 islands and cays, of which 49 are inhabited. Very affordable, this is a complete escape from the world with no cell phone service, no power, and no running water. Without these, though, tourists will take in the beautiful sunsets, clear waters, and the Milky Way at night.


Lord Howe Island, Austrailia

Lord Howe Island is an irregularly crescent-shaped volcanic remnant in the Tasman Sea. Just a two-hour flight from Australia's East Coast, this is truly a lost paradise. With a population of 350, only 400 tourists are allowed on the island at a time. It's also home to the world's most southern coral reef ecosystem.


Martinique, France

If you're searching for a Caribbean island that's less traveled, Martinique will make all the difference. In overseas territory of France, it doesn't go unnoticed with it's largest town named Fort-de-France, which features narrow streets, steep terrain, and a garden bordered by shops and cafes. This visit is complimented with it's beautiful beaches for the perfect getaway.