English Islands


Comprising England, Scotland, and Wales, the large island of Great Britain has many smaller islands all around the coastline. The English islands offer lots of diversity and variety and provide a different glimpse of the country. Visit some of the different islands for a totally different view of England. Some are popular holiday destinations and receive many visitors throughout the year, whereas others are fairly remote and rugged, with lots of wild beauty and few visitors. Some are accessible at low tide, when you can walk across the sands to the islands, others are connected by bridge, and others still must be reached by boat or plane. 

The Scilly Isles

Located off the Cornish coast in the south west of England, there are numerous small islands and islets. There are five main islands that are inhabited and they are fairly easy to visit. They are St Mary’s, Tresco, St Martin’s, St Agnes, and Bryher. St Mary’s is the largest of the islands, although it is still really small. It is easy to explore by foot, and the Isles of Scilly Museum is well worth a visit. The smallest of the islands is Bryher. The islands are renowned for their picturesque scenery and terrific bird watching opportunities. Many people like to take boat trips between the different islands. Traditional and cosy pubs await and the pace of life is really relaxed. Enjoy the friendly atmosphere on this splendid archipelago of English islands.


The Isle of Wight

Situated a short way from the Hampshire coast, The Isle of Wight has been a popular summer retreat for a very long time. Indeed, people were holidaying on the Isle of Wight when Queen Victoria was still on the throne! It is fringed with charming and lively seaside resort towns, with the natural multi-coloured sands of Alum Bay, a popular sightseeing spot. Other things to do and see on the island include the well-known headland called The Needles – a dramatic and beautiful part of the island with stunning views, the stunning Steephill Cove, Shanklin Chine Gorge, the unusual and somewhat odd theme park at Blackgang Chine, the historic and atmospheric Carisbrooke Castle, and the previous summer home of Queen Victoria. The island boasts plenty of places to eat, drink, and sleep.


Situated off the coast of Northumbria, Lindisfarne Island is also often known as Holy Island due to having once been home to a large group of monks. Today, guests enjoy bird watching and visiting the remains of the monastery and castle.  It is a great place for those who like to combine nature and history. 

Burgh Island

Burgh Island sits off the coast of Devon in the southern part of England. It is a tidal island, meaning that it can easily be reached by foot in low tide. Literary fans will enjoy visiting the Art Deco Burgh Island Hotel, which was the scene for the suspense novel, “And then There Were None”, by Agatha Christie. There is also an old traditional pub where you can enjoy a hearty meal or a refreshing drink.


Lundy is a granite island located in the Bristol Channel, not far from the mainland. Easy to walk around, it is especially popular with nature lovers and bird watching enthusiasts. It is the country’s only marine nature reserve, and visitors can also enjoy excellent snorkeling to see a wide variety of water creatures. There is a castle, a church, two lighthouses, and pubs. 


A haven for wildlife, there are plenty of woodland walks to enjoy on Brownsea Island. It is located on the south coast, near to Bournemouth. It is famous for having been the place chosen by Lord Baden-Powel for his very first Boy Scout camp. Branksea Castle is worth a stop if you are on the island. 

Hilbre Island

Lying off the coast of West Kirby on the Wirral in the north west of England, Hilbre Island is popular with nature enthusiasts. It sits in the Dee Estuary and is an important place for birds and wetland conservation and research. It can be walked to in low tide.

Canvey Island

Close to London, Canvey Island is reclaimed land, home to a large number of chalets, guest houses, and holiday homes.



Mersea is situated off the coast of Essex, at the mouth of the Colne River, and it is the most easterly of England’s inhabited islands. There is a short causeway that connects the island to the mainland, and it is believed that this was built during the Roman era. There are some nice beaches on the island, and it is well-known for its delicious oysters. Summer holiday makers often enjoy pleasure boat trips around the island.


There are plenty more islands off the coast of England, as well as some stunning islands that are Scottish and Welsh territories.  The Isle of Man is another popular spot, lying almost halfway between Great Britain and Ireland, and the islands in the English Channel also have their own individual charms.