Guest Post by Jennifer Schultz
Island camping isn’t like other camping. For starters, it’s usually not far from a beach, so you’ll get to enjoy sandy shores as well as fun water-based activities like swimming, surfing and scuba diving. Pick the right island and you’ll also have the chance to explore natural wonders such as mountains and volcanoes.
Another benefit of island camping is the novelty of it all. You’ll see tropical birds instead of grizzly bears; you’ll go cliff diving rather than riding on roller coasters. Many islands have unique cultures and histories as well, so if you like checking out shipwrecks, traditional villages and underwater pirate caves, you’re in luck!
Let’s talk about island camping getaways. Let’s explore the many possibilities of your trip abroad.
- Oceania: Stargazing at the International Dark Sky Reserve
If you like astronomy, island camping is a great way to get an unhindered look at the night sky. Far away from the lights of the big cities, you’ll camp under dazzling blankets of stars that seem to stretch over the horizon forever.
New Zealand is one of the best places to count the constellations. In fact, it’s home to the only International Dark Sky Reserve in the southern hemisphere! This is a protected area of land where things like air quality and clean sight lines are carefully preserved.
Hike the terrain. Spread out your sleeping bags. If you have a telescope, point it anywhere up high. A trip to the International Dark Sky Reserve will let you see right into the heart of the galaxy, so if you’re at all interested in stars, moons and other celestial objects, this is the best place to go.
- The Caribbean: Exploring Caves and Coves in Curacao
The Caribbean is famous for its beautiful beaches, but did you know that some of its most incredible sights are under the palm trees?
Home to a number of caves, coves and caverns, Curacao is an island where you can really explore the unknown. There are limestone tunnels formed millions of years ago; there are underground grottos where you have to dive deep before emerging in blue-tinted swimming holes surrounded by rock.
Another nice thing about Curacao is its many options for camping. You can rent a room in a variety of hotels, resorts, inns and villas, or you can claim a spot outdoors with either a rent or an RV.
Do something a little different on your Caribbean vacation. Rather than having the typical “beach” experience, go for a subterranean adventure that will give you lots of interesting stories for when you get back home.
- Asia: Diving in the Maldives
The Maldives are known for their stunning natural beauty. Whether you’re interested in sipping cocktails on white sand beaches or hiking into the lush greenery of a wild forest, this is a destination that can deliver.
One of the most exciting things to do in the Maldives is going for a dive. Deep dives will require training and certification, but even if you don’t want to spring for that, a shallower dive can reveal tons of interesting underwater sights.
The fish, for example, come in every color of the rainbow. The rays and eels will lazily swim around the turtles and the anemones. The coral is also wondrous to behold: It’s an extensive network stretching all across the Maldives that contains thousands of vibrant species and ecosystems.
Long story short, if you want a peek at life under the sea, a trip to the Maldives is in order.
- Africa: Living Luxuriously in the Seychelles
The Seychelles are a five-star island destination. That said, they also have a five-star price tag, so this is definitely a place to save for a splurge.
When you have the cash, however, the Seychelles are a great way to live out your fantasies of a million-dollar lifestyle. The beaches are pristine. The huts and bungalows will offer fancy amenities under their thatched roofs. Cruises take off from the coast on the regular, and there are ample opportunities for boating, paddling and snorkeling and more.
If you’re looking for an island paradise, what you’re really looking for are the Seychelles.
- North America: Watching the Sea Turtles at South Padre Island
Texas might not be the first place that springs to mind when you think about tropical islands, but South Padre Island is proof that looks can be deceiving.
Located right off the Gulf of Mexico, South Padre Island offers enough blue sky and warm water for any beach-loving tourist. There are dolphins swimming in the waves; there are trees rustling along the boardwalks.
The island is also known for its sea turtle conservation. Every summer, local animal groups release thousands of hatchlings into the water. Time your trip correctly, and you can have a one-of-a-kind vacation experience as you watch these cute little critters make their voyage!
- South America: Getting the Adrenaline Pumping at Robinson Crusoe Island
With a name like Robinson Crusoe Island, you’d expect this place to be full of adventure, and you’d be right.
Formed by lava flows from nearby volcanoes erupting and eroding the land over the centuries, this picture-perfect island has tons of cool and interesting things to do. You can tour colorful villas and historic forts; you can go crabbing on the beach or hiking in the cliffs; you can even scuba dive and explore the ghostly remains of underwater shipwrecks!
Camping is allowed at designated campgrounds. Your options are sleeping in rustic cabins or roughing it in the wilderness with nothing but a love of the outdoors and your handy-dandy pocket knife.
Adventure awaits at Robinson Crusoe Island. Are you going to answer the call?
These are just a few of the best destinations for island camping getaways. As you can see, they span the entire globe, so it doesn’t matter if you’d prefer kayaking in Asia or whale watching in Oceania. There’s a place out there that will make amazing memories for you
Jennifer is a professional outdoor guide, instructor, and naturalist with a passion for helping people get outside. She works as a freelance outdoor instructor for a number of different organizations in Northern Norway and abroad, giving newcomers to the outdoors the skills they need to enjoy themselves in the mountains.
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