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Our Readers’ Favorite Islands in Europe of 2024

Our Readers’ Favorite Islands in Europe of 2024

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If your idea of a perfect island getaway involves little more than melting into a lounge chair under a cabana while sipping mai tais, there are plenty of great destinations you can reach with little effort. But for those who dream of chasing sun-baked mornings with art-filled afternoons, or who long to delve into history at any new destination, or who spend their idle hours plotting their next unforgettable meal — well, the islands of Europe are calling.

How Voting Works

Every year for our World’s Best Awards survey, T+L asks readers to weigh in on travel experiences around the globe — to share their opinions on the top hotels, resorts, cities, islands, cruise ships, spas, airlines, and more. Over 186,000 T+L readers completed the 2024 survey. A total of more than 700,000 votes were cast across over 8,700 properties (hotels, cities, cruise lines, etc.).

Islands were specifically rated on the criteria below:

  • Natural attractions/beaches
  • Activities/sights
  • Restaurants/food
  • People/friendliness
  • Value

For each characteristic, respondents could choose a rating of excellent, above average, average, below average, or poor. The final scores are averages of these responses.

Amanda Blackard/Travel + Leisure

What Readers Loved

No island on this list escaped mention without one or more readers highlighting the beauty of its landscapes. If stunning views are what you’re after, none of these places will do you wrong. And though sun-soaked islands in the Med won the day, a few outliers made the cut: Madeira (No. 8), the Azores (No. 12), and Skye and the Hebrides (No. 9), with one reader calling the latter an “outstanding place to visit,” and another writing, with admirable brevity, “just beautiful. Peaceful. Friendly.”

Sardinia’s fans were similarly to-the-point, with many voters calling it simply “perfect,” though still more remarked on its natural beauty, especially for its innumerable beaches. Hvar and the Dalmatian Islands, meanwhile, seemed to catch visitors by surprise with how much they fell in love, with one unexpected devotee calling it “one of my most memorable and favorite destinations.” Another waxed poetic about the region’s many charms: “You will immediately fall in love. The beauty of the beaches and island will put you in awe of what nature has to offer. The cuisine will feed your soul. The people are warm and treat you like family. You will want to go back.” Perhaps a universal truth for all the spots on the list ahead — read on for the full rundown.

The Winner

Mílos, Greece

Amanda Blackard/Travel + Leisure

This dark horse winner skyrocketed from last year’s ninth-place finish to nab the top slot in this year’s list. The most southwesterly island in the Cyclades, Mílos has all the pristine beaches, whitewashed architecture, and unbelievable tavernas you’ll find elsewhere in the Aegean, with a fraction of the crowds of the most famous islands like Santorini or Mykonos, which was a major selling point for one reader. “Mílos was beautiful and much less crowded,” one voter wrote. “The food was great, and there were plenty of things to see and do. Everyone was very friendly and we loved it.” Another agreed on the culinary front, writing “the food is superb” and noting that despite its small size, Mílos has “a variety of beaches to offer.” And for some T+L readers, voting for Mílos was a no-brainer: “Hands down the best island in the Cyclades.”


You will immediately fall in love with Hvar and the Dalmatian Islands.


The Full List

1. Mílos, Greece

Reader Score: 93.08

2. Crete, Greece

Reader Score: 92.38

3. Hvar and the Dalmatian Islands, Croatia

Reader Score: 91.53

4. Ischia, Italy

Reader Score: 90.95

5. Sicily, Italy

Reader Score: 90.14

6. Corfu and the Ionian Islands, Greece

Reader Score: 89.42

7. Sardinia, Italy

Reader Score: 89.39

8. Madeira, Portugal

Reader Score: 89.12

9. Skye and the Hebrides, Scotland

Reader Score: 89.05

10. Páros, Greece

Reader Score: 88.97

11. Ibiza, Spain

Reader Score: 88.94

12. Azores, Portugal

Reader Score: 87.17

13. Mallorca, Spain

Reader Score: 87.04

14. Malta

Reader Score: 85.73

15. Santorini, Greece

Reader Score: 85.67

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