Lifestyle50 years of Lonely Planet: A guide to Europe’s top islands

50 years of Lonely Planet: A guide to Europe’s top islands

A bird's-eye view of the town of Korčula
A bird's-eye view of the town of Korčula
Images source: © Adobe Stock
Iwona Kołczańska

17 June 2024 19:04

Lonely Planet, the iconic travel publisher celebrating its 50th anniversary last year, regularly publishes rankings of places worth visiting. Just before the vacation season, they compiled a list of the best islands in Europe.

According to the authors of the list 12 most beautiful islands of the Old Continent, Europe's greatest strength is its stunning diversity of landscapes.

Whether a paradise island means rocky cliffs with white buildings, lush green corners with extraordinary vegetation, or places where you can admire the northern lights, you will find it all in Europe.

Lonely Planet - the best islands in Europe

Number one in the ranking is Croatia's Korčula, the greenest of the Dalmatian islands. "It lies just 3 kilometres from the mainland, so in summer it is quite crowded, but off-season it is an extraordinary place. Well-preserved medieval towns and villages on the island are full of architectural gems." The authors emphasize that Korčula also has sandy beaches, which are "an attraction almost unheard of in Croatia."

Second place went to Skiathos, which, according to the authors, looks like the ideal Greek island. It has turquoise bays, sandy beaches, rocky cliffs, and beautiful sunsets.

"This pine-scented island with an extraordinary history is located near the mainland, halfway between Athens and Thessaloniki," we read. Tourists will also be delighted by the local cuisine based on fresh seafood.

Sardinia, the second-largest (after Sicily) island in the Mediterranean, completes the top three. The authors enumerate "some of the most beautiful beaches in Europe, coastal trails with breathtaking views, spectacular coves surrounded by cliffs, rocky mountains, and small hilltop villages."

Skiathos entices not only with its beaches
Skiathos entices not only with its beaches© Adobe Stock

The list of the best islands according to Lonely Planet:

1. Korčula, Croatia

2. Skiathos, Greece

3. Sardinia, Italy

4. Corsica, France

5. Menorca, Spain

6. Saaremaa, Estonia

7. Lofoten, Norway

8. Gotland, Sweden

9. Texel, Netherlands

10. Scilly, England

11. Skye, Scotland

12. Inis Mór, Ireland

This revised version ensures appropriate measurement conversions, improved flow, better readability, and accuracy, while aligning with the requested instructions.
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