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Islands in England are a major part of the great United Kingdom that is bordered by the Irish Sea in the northern region, the Celtic Sea in the southern part and connected to the grand European continent by the English Channel in the South and the North Sea in the East.
Thinking of England, the main highlighting facts that pop in our mind are its rich British culture and traditions, picturesque scenic beauty, historical heritage sites at every turn, medieval towns and plenty of age-old castles.
Besides all this, England has another huge beautiful side, which is its group of islands. England covers almost five-eighth part of Great Britain’s islands that includes numerous Big and smaller islands that have panoramic scenic beauty and offers you mesmerizing ferry ride for a memorable experience of a lifetime.
While many of these islands in England are the major tourist attractions, many are less explored but equally beautiful for a perfect holiday destination.
So if you are planning to travel to England, do not forget to visit its gorgeous islands that are surely going to leave you speechless. To help you with the travel bucket list, here are the ten most beautiful islands in England that are a necessary visit for everyone.
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Table of Contents
Top 10 Pretty Islands in England to Visit (The UK)
The Isles of Scilly
The Isles of Scilly is a beautiful small isolated archipelago located off the Cornwall’s coast in its south-western tip. It comprises a group of five inhabited islands known as St. Mary’s, St. Agnes, Bryher, Tresco, and St. Martin’s.
The Isles of Scilly is just 35miles from the Cornwall coast and one of the precious and pure destinations in England being completely unspoiled and having gorgeous pristine beaches whose beauty directly reaches from the heart to the soul.
The journey to this destination is extremely adventurous, and you can take various modes of transportations like a ferry, AirBus, and even Island Helicopters. You can reach this exceptional destination from four locations with different modes of transportation.
If you choose to go by Skybus, Exeter, Newquay, and Land’s End are the departure points; if you decide Island Helicopters, Land’s End is the departure; and if you choose Schillinoan III passenger ferry, Penzance is the departure point.
The famous Tresco Abbey Garden is the main attraction housing ancient castles, forts, gorgeous lighthouses, Bronze Age Remains, Bishop Rocks, and most importantly 20,000 species from different parts of the word.
Other attractions include island trips, Pop up shopping centers on the island, heritage sites, wildlife exploration and exciting sightseeing trips for exploring the island by walking as well as by boat riding.
Isle of Portland
Portland is an island come town lying on the south coast of England’s West Country. The island is a part of the famous English Channel and stretches over a length of 6km in length and breadth of 2.7kms. The island is a limestone tied beauty and a hub of adventure activities like diving, kayaking, rock climbing, abseiling and diving.
It seems to be built specifically for the adventure enthusiasts and tops in terms of its natural beauty and important landmarks starting from museums, lighthouses, and castles to the heritage locations.
The island’s sailing water has a spectacular beauty due to which it is famous across the world for the water Olympics. The biggest attraction here is the Olympic Rings situated in the northern part that gives mesmerizing views of the sailing water and Chesil beach to gasp for.
Some of the best attractions of this are- Portland Bill Lighthouse, a walk in the ‘Isle of Portland circuit’ which is the southwest coastal path of the island, bird watching, Sculpture Park, Pulpet Rock Point having awe-inspiring sea views and definitely Fishing Boat Trips and Predator Trips to have some spectacular views of Sharks, Mako and Porbeagle.
It is definitely among the most adventurous islands of Great Britain.
St. Michaels Mount
This is the most beautiful island in England straight out of a dream that is going to transport you into a fairyland. The island is the most beautiful asset of Cornwell and is situated in the Mount’s Bay in England.
The island has an interesting tale associated with it. It is believed that before thousands of years when the island was a trading route, the holy St. Martin was seen by a fisherman, roaming in the top of the island. Followed by which it was declared to be the major pilgrimage and religious center., And got involved in a series of battle soon by many rulers during that time to gain its ownership.
Finally, in 1659, Colonel John St. Aubyn bought it after the Spanish Invasion, and in 1954 it was gifted by Aubyn to National trust that is the authority until date.
The island is famous for its beautiful harbors, canons, sub-tropical gardens, ancient pathways having a historical touch in each point with uncovered stories and the most breathtaking attraction is the giant age-old castle belonging to the 12th century located at the top of the island with cobbled pathways overlooking the mesmerizing sea.
You can also go for a ferry tour exploring the entire island and dip yourself into the flavors of history and romance. It is among the smallest English islands with heavenly beauty all over.
Lundy Island is an exquisite pleasure in the coastal area OF North Devon where the Atlantic Ocean met the Bristol Channel having the 3-mile long and a half-mile wide outcropped granite in between serving as a connector.
The destination has picturesque scenic beauty to spend some quality time under the clear skies surrounded by the Blue Ocean and picturesque green valleys to relax and rejuvenate in the lap of Mother Nature.
On the western part, it is covered with rugged hills overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, while on the eastern part it is more about manicured green valleys dressed with various flowering species and plants.
The best attractions of the island are a ferry ride to explore its beauty, a tour of Bristol Channel wildlife near the granite outcrop, go for underwater diving; feel the adventurous climb up to the Devil’s Slide and various other entertaining activities to get involved.
The island is a paradise for wildlife lovers due to its water onshore wildlife sanctuary that is home to numerous bird species in England and famous for sika deer and red squirrels. It is referred to as the most significant island of Poole Harbour in Dorset County of England.
The island provides cinematic views of the Purbeck Hills due to its strategic location in the middle of Poole Harbour and consists of woodland areas, lagoons, and heathland for the wildlife species to thrive in the naturally beautiful island.
The wildlife boat tour over the island is exceptionally adventurous to watch its vivid wildlife species and capture some amazing shots of the spectacular bird species rare to find elsewhere in the world. The journey through the cliffs, woodland, beaches is something that you will cherish for a lifetime.
For the trekkers and hikers too, this is an incredibly amazing destination to enjoy the best of adventure and wildlife.
Channel Island is one of the largest archipelagos of the English Channel situated off to the French coastal area of Normandy. The island technically does not lie in Britain and not even in France either. It is a beautiful old-world charm slightly hopping off from England that comprises stunning coastlines and breathtaking shaded lanes with panoramic views of the surrounding ocean.
It is divided into two parts- Bailiwicks of Guernsey and Jersy. The island was initially under the supervision of Duchy of Normandy but gradually passed to Britain when William was crowned as the king of England in 1066. Since then it has ranked among the most famous islands in England.
The island is famous for its amazing scenic beauty, flowering plant species acing the beauty, pleasant climate and the beautiful resorts providing the best kind of accommodation facilities for the tourists to feel the beauty of the island.
Some of the breathtaking attractions of this island are- Santa Cruz Island, Sea Caves, Anacapa Island, Santa Rosa Island, San Miguel Island and the Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary.
This island serves as a visual treat lying off the Northumberland coast in the northwestern part of England close to the south border of Scotland. The name of the island is derived due to the purity of the location, which is considered extremely divine by the Anglo-Saxon community of England.
This island was chosen back in 635AD by Saint Aiden who came from Lona and established his holy monastery here, which gradually led to the spreading of Christianity and its messages all over the world from this sacred location.
The island is not just a beautiful coastal area but also a picturesque village displaying the ancient beauty of the 12th century. The island is the most prominent pilgrimage location in England famous for its Ancient Round Tower, Ruins of Six Churches, Holy Well, a graveyard from the 8th century, an ancient cell, Bullaun stones, and bargaining stone.
The island has a fascinating fusion of history and religion with mysterious untold stories. The boat tour of Holy island can be best explored from Mountshannon Pier in April to the last week of September.
Planning your trip to England? Check out our guide on how to find cheap flights!
The Isle of Wight
It is the largest island of England lying in the English Channel at a distance of 2 to 5 miles from the coast of Hampshire. If you are wondering about what is the most populated island in England, this ranks second in terms of population.
It has been the most favorite holiday destination of Britishers from the Victorian era due to its beautiful coastal areas and eye-arresting landscapes.
Plenty of tourists across the world come to visit this evergreen beauty throughout the year and hence it also serves a significant tourist destination in England. The island looks like a beautiful glittering blue diamond stretching 22.5 miles and 13.5 miles from East to west and north to south respectively.
The Chalk ridge serves as the backbone of the island extending from Culver Cliff to The Needles from East to west. The southern part of the island is guarded by three rivers-The Eastern Yar, Medina, and Western Yar.
The destination has vivid geographical beauty when viewed from different corners and makes it extremely unique and mesmerizing. The best attractions here are- Isle of Wight Steam railway, Nunwell House and gardens, Godshill Model Village, Newtown national nature reserve, Butterfly and Fountain world, Amazon World Zoon park, Godshill Church, Osborne House, and the list goes on.
This island is a small one and belongs to the group of Farne islands in England. The island is famous for its wildlife species like Atlantic puffins, kittiwakes, razorbills and grey seals that are the rarest species but can be found in abundance on this island.
This is an ideal destination for nature lovers, bird watchers, and photographers for some fantastic shots in the magical background.
It is also famous as the seabird breeding area in Britain. The island is an isolated area and can be enjoyed best with the ferry rides to have a glimpse of the various seabirds dancing along the waves of the sea and the breeding species like puffins, kittiwakes that are the main attraction over here.
It is also well known for its lighthouse, which is currently in ruins and serves as a heritage attraction in the island.
Don’t know what to pack? Check out our handy Minimalist Travel Packing List!
It is a small beautiful island on the east side of St.Ives Bay to the west of Cornwall in England. The island is widely known among the tourist for its lighthouse standing like a jewel on the island that was built from 1858 to 1859.
It is situated on the island at an elevation of 300 meters above sea level in a tall white structure serving as a visual treat in contrast to the pure blue seawater with crashing white waves.
The lighthouse is an octagonal structure made of rubble stone layered in the mortar with a height of 26meter. The lighthouse first flashed its beaming white light followed by a red one in 1859 and worked well for many years.
The lighthouse carries a huge history behind it and is the prime attraction of this small isolated island. Apart from that, the sandy beaches and the dramatic coves accompanied by the sea are a natural blessing that every visitor will love to enjoy.
Is England too expensive of a destination? Check this list of cheap destinations in Europe!
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Founder of Pretty Wild World and one of the leading experts in Europe travel, the Nordics, and Scandinavia Destinations.
Evan Kristine has been mentioned in big publications such as The Huffington Post and the Thought Catalog has been sharing her useful travel tips and hacks to the world for more than five years now.
Nowadays, she is a full-time traveler exploring and documenting her journey around the world providing you the next best travel idea for your great next adventure.