America is filled with amazing island getaways that offer sandy beaches, oceanfront resorts, incredible seafood, and plenty of opportunities for rest and relaxation. From the warm waters of the Florida Keys to the rugged beauty of the Pacific Northwest, these island escapes provide the perfect setting for an unforgettable vacation.
1. Oahu, Hawaii
The island of Oahu is one of Hawaii’s most popular destinations, thanks largely to the famous beaches of Waikiki. Outside of the Waikiki strip, visitors can explore lush rainforests, towering waterfalls, quiet coastal towns, and epic surf breaks along the North Shore. Don’t miss snorkelling at Hanauma Bay, watching big wave surfers at Pipeline, or hiking to Manoa Falls. And be sure to sample traditional Hawaiian cuisine like fresh poke and kalua pork.
2. Mackinac Island, Michigan
Step back in time with a visit to car-free Mackinac Island on Lake Huron between Michigan’s Upper and Lower peninsulas. Without motor vehicles, visitors get around via bike or horse drawn carriage as they explore Victorian-era architecture, browse downtown boutiques, and indulge in Mackinac Island’s world-famous fudge. The 8-mile perimeter road circumnavigates the island, offering spectacular views of Lake Huron along the way. And a ride on the Shepler’s Ferry is one of the best ways to reach the island.
3. Block Island, Rhode Island
A mere 13 miles off the coast of Rhode Island lies Block Island, an idyllic New England refuge with 17 miles of pristine beaches. Visitors arrive via ferry to explore Block Island’s wildlife reserves, sandstone bluffs, pirate legends, and two historic lighthouses. Kayaking, sailing, fishing charters, and wildlife cruises are popular during warmer months, while cross country skiing and winter bird watching take center stage once the fall chill sets in. This is definitely one to add to your itinerary if you plant to visit Rhode Island during future family holidays to the USA.
4. San Juan Islands, Washington
Tucked between Seattle and Vancouver lies the San Juan Islands, an archipelago counting 172 landmasses and hundreds of nearby islets. The three most populated islands are San Juan, Orcas, and Lopez, each with their own unique personality and claim to fame. Visitors feel worlds away thanks to the islands’ remoteness, tranquility, sheep-dotted hills, and slower pace of life. Expect abundant whale watching, kayaking, hiking, farm-to-table dining, and peaceful relaxation.
5. Florida Keys
Over 1,700 tiny islands make up the 120-mile island chain known as the Florida Keys. Most visitors flock straight to Key West, the southernmost point of the continental US, where sunset celebrations, live music, tasty seafood, and frozen cocktails never stop flowing. But the less-visited keys like Islamorada, Marathon, and Big Pine Key also warrant exploration for their state parks, hidden beaches, and backcountry camping. And of course the Keys’ underwater world amazes, with some of the nation’s best snorkelling and diving easily accessible right off the islands’ shores.
From tropical Hawaii to historic Mackinac Island and everywhere in between, America’s islands offer memorable adventures. These unique destinations let you unplug, relax, and experience nature’s beauty up close, all while soaking up incredible views of the surrounding sea or lake. Plan your next vacation around one of these great island escapes.