Get us in your inbox

Indonesian islands
Photograph: Shutterstock

The 17 most Instagrammed islands in the world

Daydreaming about island life? Fuel your fantasies with these photogenic social faves

Ellie Walker-Arnott
Written by
Ellie Walker-Arnott

For the last few months, we’ve been travelling almost exclusively in our daydreams – and much of the time, those daydreams have been fuelled by Instagram. Looking at snaps of other people’s travels can be an ace way to plan your own future adventures, whenever they may be. Ready to set off on another virtual adventure to somewhere beautiful and remote? Then get a load of this lot: the most ’grammed islands on the planet, from little Mediterranean spots to large islands lush with life.

The ranking is based on the number of live, hashtagged posts associated with each island. (Some aren’t technically individual islands but archipelagos, island nations or groups of islands generally lumped together as one.)

Many of these islands could be ideal places to swerve crowds, once flights resume and international travel is back on the agenda. For now, they’re something lovelier to look at than your now very familiar four walls.

The most beautiful islands in the world, according to Instagram

Photograph: Shutterstock

1. Bali

No surprise that this mega-popular Indonesian island is the most posted about, with more than 60 million hashtags. With its glorious beaches, lush jungles, hippie yoga retreats, surf culture and ultra-luxe hotels, islands don’t get more photogenic than Bali.

Photograph: Shutterstock

2. Hawaii

The US state of Hawaii is made up of a collection of jaw-droppingly beautiful islands, with huge peaks and volcanoes and palm tree-studded, soft-sand beaches. Those tropical vibes make it the second most Instagrammed island on earth.

Photograph: Shutterstock

3. Ireland

One of the biggest islands in Europe, Ireland is made up of the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. Both are stunners, with large swathes of untouched greenery, rugged coastline and natural wonders, plus buzzy cities and pretty towns to explore.

Photograph: Shutterstock

4. Flores

Flores is one of the Lesser Sunda islands in Indonesia. Near Bali, it’s less popular with travellers but no less lovely to look at, with incredible wildlife and dramatic scenery. The island’s Kelimutu National Park is home to a volcano and a number of vibrantly-coloured crater lakes – no filter required.

Photograph: Shutterstock

5. Ibiza

Ibiza’s more than 16 million Instagram hashtags might just be people sharing wild nights out, thanks to the island’s world-class clubbing scene. But the rocky Balearic island has much more than that going for it. Visitors are greeted by attractive, white-washed villages, dreamy beaches and even dreamier sunsets.

Puerto Rico
Photograph: Shutterstock

6. Puerto Rico

Waterfalls, mountains and tropical rainforests await on the Caribbean island of Puerto Rico. But there are plenty of man-made sites that are screaming out for a snap too, like the colourful Spanish colonial buidings of San Juan.

Photograph: Shutterstock

7. Sicily

Just off the ‘toe’ of Italy’s ‘boot’, Sicily is rich with history, culture and incredible food. It’s also all very pleasing to look at: as well as pretty fishing villages, bussling Baroque cities and world-class beaches, the island boasts a number of incredibly well-preserved ancient Greek ruins.

Photograph: Shutterstock/Sean Pavone

8. Cuba

The original centre of the Cuban capital, Old Havana is popular with photographers thanks to its ancient technicolor buildings. Elsewhere in Cuba you can also find lush rural areas and stunning beaches, all dotted with eye-catching vintage cars – the result of a ’60s import ban on new American vehicles.

Photograph: Shutterstock

9. Jamaica

With crystal-clear waters, lush rainforests and thriving towns, it’s clear why the buzzy, paradise-like Caribbean island of Jamaica is popular on Insta.

Photograph: Shutterstock

10. Majorca

Away from the package-holiday hotspot of Magaluf and the villa where reality TV show ‘Love Island’ is filmed, sheltered coves and pretty stone villages are the big draws on the sunny Mediterranean island of Majorca.

Photograph: Shutterstock

11. Phuket

Popular with backpackers, divers and fans of really great food, Phuket Island is the biggest of Thailand’s islands, dotted with stunning white beaches and incredible natural scenery.

Photograph: Shutterstock

12. Okinawa

The Okinawan Islands, including Okinawa itself, are a group of beautiful islands found between Taiwan and Japan’s mainland. Their tropical vibes and balmy temperatures make them a huge draw for visitors from Japan and far beyond.

Photograph: Shutterstock

13. Jersey

One of the Channel Islands, Jersey sits between England the north coast of France, and has a vibe that spans the two. You’ll find rugged beaches, lush gardens, neat coastal architecture and fascinating fortresses and bunkers.

Photograph: Shutterstock

14. Maldives

An island nation perched in the Indian Ocean, the Maldives are almost indescribably lovely to look at. Travellers will discover clear jewel-toned waters, white beaches and bobbing palm tresses, plus plenty of luxe hotels with huts that sit right on the waves.

Photograph: Shutterstock

15. Lombok

Bali’s neighbour, Lombok draws in travellers looking for untouched beaches and stellar surf spots. The island is spotted with grid-worthy places, but the idyllic, car-free Gili Islands, just off the main island’s coast, are probably the prettiest of them all.

Photograph: Shutterstock

16. Tenerife

Topped by a dormant volcano, Tenerife is the largest of the Canary Islands. There are great hiking trails in Tenerife’s national park, as well as popular beaches around the island’s edge – some with incredibly Insta-worthy black volcanic sand.

Photograph: ArtMediaFactory/

17. Sardinia

Hiking trails and boat trips around Sardinia’s attractive coastline are two good reasons to visit this Italian spot, as are the Bronze Age ruins dotted across the island.

This list was compiled using data from No Frills Excursions.

When will be actually be allowed to visit islands like these?

    You may also like

      The best things in life are free.

      Get our free newsletter – it’s great.

      Loading animation
      Déjà vu! We already have this email. Try another?

      🙌 Awesome, you're subscribed!

      Thanks for subscribing! Look out for your first newsletter in your inbox soon!