Remote Rangiroa is the world’s second largest atoll; all of Tahiti—<a href="https://www.nationalgeographic.com/travel/article/french-polynesia-tahiti-what-to-do" target="_blank">French Polynesia’s</a> largest island—could fit inside. Stroll a deserted pink sand beach. Or head to the area around Tiputa Pass, an inlet that funnels clear water and wildlife into and out of the lagoon with the tides, to spot a bevy of marine creatures including schooling grey reef sharks.
Remote Rangiroa is the world’s second largest atoll; all of Tahiti—French Polynesia’s largest island—could fit inside. Stroll a deserted pink sand beach. Or head to the area around Tiputa Pass, an inlet that funnels clear water and wildlife into and out of the lagoon with the tides, to spot a bevy of marine creatures including schooling grey reef sharks.
Photograph by Marco Moretti, Anzenberger/Redux

These 20 islands are an adventurer’s dream

From offshore waters to inland wilds, these isles offer activities for every explorer.

By virtue of their geography, islands are natural havens for adventure seekers: Surrounded by water, a voyage is required just to reach them.

Yet some islands are a cut above. These places are extra remote, have wild natural features, or rare (and sometimes dangerous) creatures that lend a particular allure. Some have existing infrastructure making the adventure experience as seamless as booking a tour, while others require a little more effort for the reward. (See 21 of the world’s best island escapes.)

From swimming through teeming reefs to trekking up jungle volcanoes, from skydiving and rock climbing to surfing alongside penguins, these extraordinary islands all but guarantee adventure—you just have to be bold enough to seek it.

Meghan Miner Murray is a contributing researcher for National Geographic Traveler, a freelance writer, and a scuba guide based on Hawaii Island. Follow her on Instagram @meghanminermurray.
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