10 Largest Island Countries ...


10 Largest Island Countries ...
10 Largest Island Countries ...

We’re going to take a look at the world’s largest island countries. These are not necessarily going to be the world’s largest islands because a number of those are split and owned by more than one nation, and for the purpose of this article I’m also discounting Australia as, depending on which definition you choose, it is now classed as a continent. So, these are the 10 largest island countries, islands solely occupied by one nation.

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Greenland Greenland is a place of wonder and top of the world’s largest island countries by area – some 823,000 square miles. It is a land of ice and snow for most of the year. Roads are few and the best way to get around is by dog sled, although during the summer months islanders will use cars and kayaks. In winter it is blindingly white, but come the summer, for just a short time, the island blossoms and green appears along with some surprisingly beautiful flowers.



Madagascar Madagascar is an island of incredible contrasts. Lying off the east coast of Africa, it has a stunning coastline on the Indian Ocean where beaches are the epitome of tropical paradise. Inland, however, there are areas of virgin forest, massive rivers, desert plains, incredibly craggy mountains and forbidding plateaus. Covering 227,000 square miles, Madagascar is one of the most bio-diverse countries in the world, with not only an absence of the usual animals of Africa, but with a massive array of species of animal and plant life not found elsewhere – such as the lemurs.



Japan Japan is one of the most fascinating places anywhere, as well as being one of the world’s largest island nations. Four main islands account for 97% of its 377,000 square miles, but the Land of the Rising Sun also has more than 6,300 smaller islands. Over 127 million people call Japan home, making it the 10th most populous country in the world. It is an incredible place where the culture is probably the most unique of anywhere, it having not been subject to external influences right up until the 17th century. Japan offers an experience where the ancient really does meet the modern, in fact – uber modern.


The Philippines

The Philippines The 7,107 islands of The Philippines have a land mass of 116,000 square miles. The main island, Luzon, covers 42,500 square miles and is the 15th largest island in the world. The Philippines is not only one of the largest island countries but is also the world’s 12th most populous country with there being more than 92 million Filipinos. The islands have enjoyed a rich history, having once been a colony of Spain (the country is named for King Philip II) and the scene of much fighting in WWII. Today, it is a peaceful nation with a fabulous experience for travelers, especially on its stunningly gorgeous beaches.


New Zealand

New Zealand Few travelers would argue with the contention that New Zealand is probably the most beautiful country in the world. The two main islands cover 89,000 square miles and there are numerous tiny islands too, offering something for every kind of vacation. The Land of the Long White Cloud is geographically a superb patchwork of mountains, lakes, rivers, forests, fjords and beaches. It has become familiar to many as the setting for stunning movies, and is now the accepted adventure sports capital of the world. With a culture that’s a charming mix of Polynesian and old colonial, NZ is one of the friendliest and most peaceful countries on earth.

Famous Quotes

Love is like a friendship caught on fire. In the beginning a flame, very pretty, often hot and fierce, but still only light and flickering. As love grows older, our hearts mature and our love becomes as coals, deep-burning and unquenchable.

Bruce Lee

Great Britain

Great Britain There are so many clichés about Britain – but actually, most of them are probably true; it is a land of chocolate box villages and dismal weather and the stiff upper lip. But it remains one of the most influential countries in the world politically as well as being one of the most visited. Britain is one of the largest island nations (9th biggest island with an area of 81,000 square miles) but contrary to what I said in the introduction about not covering shared islands, it is actually split between different nations. It makes the political map confusing. The island is shared by England, Scotland and Wales, but for UN purposes and some global sports bodies, it is one nation under the title Great Britain. When you add in Northern Ireland, it becomes the United Kingdom – this is what it says on our passports. To add further to the confusion, the island of Britain and the island shared by Ireland and Northern Ireland are together known as the British Isles. Ireland is an independent republic. Here endeth the lesson!



Cuba Cuba is the largest island country in the Caribbean, covering 40,000 square miles and lying less than 100 miles south of Florida. It’s a very dry island with the largest body of water being the man-made Zaza Reservoir. The coastline is everything you demand of a tropical Caribbean paradise, whilst the internal terrain is mountainous in the south east and rolling plains elsewhere. It holds much fascination for visitors, especially because it is a communist country so close to the US. Havana, the capital, is a striking place where in places it seems like it is still stuck in the 1950s and there are still many remnants of the beautiful Spanish colonial architecture.



Iceland Iceland is the island where two worlds collide – the world of ice and the world of fire. These two opposites combine to make a magical place of erupting volcanoes and behemoth glaciers. Icebergs float off its coast and geothermic pools and geysers fill the air with steam. Stark flat plains and mirror glass lakes of supreme beauty give rise to craggy peaks with gushing waterfalls, in a landscape that could come right out of a sci-fi movie. Anchored by Reykjavik, the welcome to visitors is heart-meltingly warm and, as if not already provided with bounteous gifts by Mother Nature, Iceland is also one of the best places to see the Northern Lights.


Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka Sri Lanka was not so long ago a very troubled place. 30 years of civil war and the devastation of the 2004 tsunami put terrible strain on this developing nation, but thankfully it is recovering – so much so that it is becoming a hotspot for eco-tourism. Covering 26,000 miles still makes it one of the world’s largest island countries but, if you want to experience the sort of mysticism, spirituality and stupendous beauty of the East in a more intimate package, Sri Lanka is the place to head: Magnificent Buddhist temples and monuments vie for your attention with tea and spice plantations. The beaches are as awesome as any tropical island and the cities vary from the frenetic and chaotic capital Colombo, to the cool, serene Kandy.



Jamaica For the last of the largest island nations we’re heading back to the Caribbean. Covering only 4,300 miles, there are many, many more islands bigger than Jamaica, but apart from the ones already listed, none of them are sole nation islands. Jamaica is the most well developed island touristically – maybe because it is the largest of the sole nation islands (Cuba used to be closed to tourists) – and it set the standard for Caribbean vacations. Luxury hotels and resorts, legendary beaches, a landscape that offers plenty of adventure and an exciting and intriguing culture mean Jamaica will forever remain a favorite among tropical islands.

The world’s largest island countries certainly make an interesting and eclectic bunch, don’t they?

Feedback Junction

Where Thoughts and Opinions Converge

Australia is the biggest island country (it's also a continent).

the philippines, pearl of the orient <3

Philippines is indeed an amzing place, its like a place to escape cities

Go Philippines:())

Philippines is Love! Wonderful countries indeed

How did you forget Indonesia? The world's largest island nation, including Java and Bali!

Philippines is one of the best.

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