20 Most Searched for Islands of 2012

We dug deep into Google search data to find and rank the top most searched island travel destinations throughout 2012 -- with links to ISLANDS stories, tips and photos from each place. You'll be shocked at which island is No. 1.

20. dominican republic most searched for islands
No. 20 - Dominican Republic Whether you're going to the all-inclusive mecca of Punta Cana, windsurfing in Cabarete, exploring the culture of Santo Domingo or finding your own adventure, the Dominican Republic is loaded with travel possibilities. It also happens to be the site of the first ISLANDS On Assignment photo tour!
19. oahu hawaii most searched for islands
No. 19 - Oahu, Hawaii ISLANDS photo editor Lori Barbely presented her ultimate foodie trip to Oahu this year, going from the low-end shrimp trucks to high-end Alan Wong tomatoes. See Lori's Oahu photo gallery.
18. puerto rico most searched for islands
No. 18 - Puerto Rico You love Puerto Rico, we love Puerto Rico. Whether walking the streets of Old San Juan, hiking into the beauty of El Yunque or venturing to Vieques and Culebra, this is an island destination that's incredibly convenient and endlessly fascinating. Even if you lived here, you'd never see it all. Speaking of which, see why Puerto Rico is on our Best Islands to Live On ranking.
17. kauai hawaii most searched for islands
No. 17 - Kauai, Hawaii If you're searching for the perfect Hawaiian Island, Kauai may be the ultimate place for you. Every ISLANDS editor who has visited there -- and we've enjoyed many trips over the years -- has ranked it as one of their favorite islands anywhere. It's also one of the best islands to live on in the world. Dream about moving there with our new Best Islands to Live On: Hawaii Guide.
16. jamaica most searched for islands
No. 16 - Jamaica Jamaica is known for its all-inclusive resorts, its famous beaches, its Dunn's River Falls and its bobsledding. But this island is incredibly rich both culturally and scenically (wait ... "scenically"?!). If you can name where this quiet little slice of scenery is, we'll be very impressed. Oh, and it's also known for reggae. See our epic Jamaica reggae feature article.
15. cuba most searched for islands
No. 15 - Cuba Cuba continues to be the mystery of the Caribbean -- at least to would-be U.S. tourists. What's it like there? Will I ever get to visit Cuba myself? Those are the questions that likely fuel Cuba's high ranking for travel searches, that and the fact that Canadians and Europeans alone make this one of the most visited islands in the Caribbean. See our feature article on Cuba now and next.
14. scotland most searched for islands
No. 14 - Scotland You may say, "Wait a minute, 'Scotland' isn't an island!" And that is true, Scotland is on an island, just like the Dominican Republic. Still, we're breaking it out as its own entry on this ranking because people are desperate for more Scotland. Take a look at our Scotland photo gallery to inspire your own trip there.
13. ireland most searched for islands
No. 13 - Ireland How can you not love the magical emerald isle? It's actually been way too long since ISLANDS visited Ireland. Maybe 2013 is the year we'll go back for you. In the meantime, see one of our favorite ISLANDS feature articles ever -- the ultimate foodie tour of Ireland.
12. indonesia most searched for islands
No. 12 - Indonesia Of course travelers are searching for "Indonesia" -- it encompasses so many travel destinations, from Bali and Komodo to Sumatra and Mentawai. ISLANDS has been to many of those top spots, and so have you. Some of our favorite reader photos ever in the ISLANDS Photo Contest have come from Indonesia, including a couple stellar shots from the 2012 contest. See them and more in our gallery of the 101 Best Reader Photos Ever.
11. england united kingdom most searched for islands
No. 11 - England There are so many ways to enjoy England, whether you want to experience this history and buzz of London or see the charming countryside. But the best way we've ever covered is seeing England coast-to-coast -- on foot. See this classic tale of walking across England.
10. maui hawaii most searched for islands
No. 10 - Maui, Hawaii You want to live here. You know you do. See our Best Islands to Live On: Hawaii Guide.
9. japan mount fuji most searched for islands
No. 9 - Japan Climb Mount Fuji, each stunning sushi, immerse yourself in the countryside. See more of our Japan tips.
8. mallorca spain mediterranean most searched for islands
8. Mallorca, Spain We were surprised to see Mallorca ranked so highly on Google searches? Yes and no. It's not as iconic as, say, Bora Bora or Fiji. Yet if you want to see the islands of the Mediterranean, you have to see the rich history and rolling interior of Mallorca -- and its sister island Menorca. See our classic Mallorca cruise story.
7. thailand asia most searched for islands
No. 7 - Thailand The islands of Thailand are spectacular, especially if you're staying in one of the coolest jungle resorts we've ever seen. See why our special Thailand trip is on our official ISLANDS Wish List.
6. new zealand most searched for islands
No. 6 - New Zealand Hey, ISLANDS was big on New Zealand before it was overrun with hobbits and rebranded as "Middle Earth." We want to live there, stay in treehouses there, cruise there, drink wine there, even raise sheep there. See our New Zealand overview.
5. hong kong most searched for islands
No. 5 - Hong Kong Asia continues to blossom not just as an economic powerhouse but as a travel destination. One of the hottest spots is Hong Kong. We love it because of that perfect blend of natural island with modern city. Read our Hong Kong feature: Where Nature Meets City.
4. italy venice most searched for islands
No. 4 - Italy Italy has some of the most beautiful islands in the Mediterranean ... or anywhere. And remember, Venice is an island, so you see it popping up a lot here on islands.com, including in our 2012 gallery of Photo Contest winners.
3. australia most searched for islands
No. 3 - Australia And if you think Italy has a lot of islands, you'll love Australia. From Tasmania to Lord Howe Island to the Whitsundays, Australia has so many remarkable island destinations off its coast. If you subscribe to ISLANDS magazine, you may have already seen this image on the magazine cover. Find out where it is and download it from the ISLANDS Wallpaper Gallery.
2. bali indonesia most searched for islands
No. 2 - Bali You may say that we technically already covered Bali in our listing of Indonesia. But "Bali" is such a popular search term, we just had to give it its own listing here on our Top 20 ranking. See more Bali coverage.
1. singapore most searched for islands
No. 1 - Singapore If you guessed that Singapore would be No. 1 on this list, you deserve 100 points. If you knew Singapore is an island, an extra 50 points. Can you redeem these points for a free trip to Singapore? That would be nice. See why people love it so much in our story on living in Singapore.
10. Belize
Editor's note: We've kept our 2011 ranking here too -- though this one is measured by islands.com searches and not the whole world's Google searches. Enjoy! 10. Belize It’s 2012, the beginning of the apocalypse according to the Mayan calendar. We proposed going to tenth-most popular Belize to ride it out. Looks like our readers wanted to come along, too. **Belize: Could this be the end? (pdf) » **Brand X Pictures
9. Barbados
9. Barbados A 2010 pick for one of the Best Islands to Live On, Barbados is perfect for families with children. 2010 Best Islands to Live On »Jon Whittle
8. Bora Bora
8. Bora Bora Forget the next Bora Bora — the first Bora Bora still knows how to seduce us. A picnic on a Tahitian motu was one of our picks for best island dining experience. Top 10 Island Dining Experiences »Eddy Patricelli
7. Jamaica
7. Jamaica The food! The music! The high-inducing greenery (of the landscape, of course)! The birthplace of reggae can still show us a thing or two about how to live. According to our article on the best jobs in the islands, Jamaica’s raft polers get tipped in cash and Red Stripes. The Best Jobs in the Islands »iStockphoto
6. Aruba
6. Aruba The A in the “ABC” islands of the south Caribbean, Aruba’s uniquely arid landscape, epitomized by the green desert of Arikok National Park, and colorful Dutch architecture give it a distinctly different flavor from its Caribbean cousins. Aruba's Arikok National Park: Green Desert »iStockphoto
5. Maui
5. Maui This particular Hawaiian island captured our readers’ hearts. Maybe it’s what resident Martin Lenny says: “While it’s a beautiful place, and we speak English and use American dollars, Maui is a foreign country.” Raise a Family in Maui »Comstock
4. Fiji
4. Fiji Fiji allows foreigners to own land, unlike other countries in the South Pacific – that’s why we named it another one of our top islands for families. Top 5 Islands for Families »Photodisc
3. Hawaii
3. Hawaii American? Yes. Predictable? Never. Hawaii’s local traditions, like the iconic Merrie Monarch Festival of hula pictured here, enchanted our editors and readers. The Heartbeat of Hawaii »
2. Puerto Rico
2. Puerto Rico The vibrant commonwealth of Puerto Rico blends 18th-century charm with lush rainforests and footloose nightlife. For our U.S. readers, it’s full Caribbean immersion – no passport required. Destination: Puerto Rico »iStockphoto
1. Roatan
1. Roatan One ISLANDS editor declared this gem off the turquoise waters of Honduras the world’s best island to retire on. With small waves, a huge reef, and scads of unmarred sands, we can see why this was our readers' most searched-for island destination. Best Islands to Live On: Retire on Roatan »Jon Whittle