The word ‘island’ usually conjures thoughts of sun soaked sands, idyllic turquoise ocean and gently swaying palm trees.
But a recent World’s Best survey conducted by Travel & Leisure proves there is no single formula for paradise.
Based on activities, natural attractions, beaches, food and friendliness, thousands of wanderlust enthusiasts voted for their favourite island havens around the world.
Beating out traditional favourites like Maui in Hawaii, Bora Bora and Tahiti, the densely populated Indonesian island of Java took first place in an unusual twist.
But it was the final entry to the top ten shortlist that proved more surprising still.
Taking tenth place was the south Australian isle of Tasmania, a rugged wilderness of natural parkland and protected eco reserves.
According to Lonely Planet, Tasmania is a one stop destination for travellers to ‘revel in isolation’ and get back to the serene peace of nature.
Known for its incredible landscape and natural beauty, Tasmania is roughly the size of Ireland with a tenth of its population and a similarly changeable, often rainy climate.
THE TOP TEN ISLANDS ON EARTH
1. Java, Indonesia
2. Bali, Indonesia
3. Lombok, Indonesia
5. Waiheke Island, New Zealand
6. Palawan, Philippines
8. Cebu, Philippines
9. Paros, Greece
10. Tasmania, Australia
Top attractions for adventure seekers and lovers of the great outdoors include Freycinet National Park, Cradle Mountain and the Overland Track where you can embark on a famous six-day guided tour and Franklin-Gordon Wild Rivers National Park.
The south west of the island in particular offers an unrivalled opportunity to hike in solitude.
The Tasmanian capital of Hobart provides cultural and culinary entertainment thanks to a wide variety of galleries, museums, boutique hotels and restaurants stocked with fresh produce straight from the island.
The Australian island is particularly renowned for its world class seafood.
Night owls can head to Hobart’s Salamanca district for an eclectic mix of cafes, bars and eateries, as well as the ‘unmissable’ Salamanca Market held on Saturday mornings.
Port Arthur, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is one of Tasmania’s most popular attractions and a guaranteed day of enjoyment and education for history enthusiasts.
The former prison was home to convicts throughout much of the 1800s until the adjoining church was burnt to the ground in 1886.
Flights to Hobart from Sydney’s Kingsford Smith airport start from $191 adult return on Skyscanner.