Beaches are beautiful, but there’s something about being surrounded on all sides by water that makes an island feel even more spectacular than a typical beachfront. While we certainly wouldn’t discourage you from traveling far and wide to experience the best islands in the world, you might be surprised to learn that the U.S. has its fair share of gorgeous islands to visit, no visa required.
And no, we’re not just talking about Hawaii. It turns out, where there is water, there may also be islands, and humans have long looked at these remote places and thought, “Let’s live there!” Lucky us, too, because it’s given us everything from luxury resort hotspots to rustic camping-only getaways.
Whether it’s just off the coast of Georgia, a ferry ride away in Washington or a long-haul flight to the middle of the Pacific, here are some places you can take the island vacation you’ve always dreamed of… without leaving the United States.
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A version of this post was originally published June 2018.