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Want to get away from everyone? CNN suggests 10 European islands

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And of course, a Greek island could not be missing from such a list

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Europe has islands for all tastes. However, for every Mykonos, Santorini and Ibiza, CNN notes that there are lesser-known and equally gorgeous destinations where travelers can escape the crowds and get close to nature.

Among the ten “quiet” islands recommended by the American network is one from Greece: the picturesque Skyros.

Here are the 10 secluded islands recommended by CNN.

Schiermonnikoog, Netherlands

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The Netherlands is best known for its canals and tropical islands of the Dutch Caribbean, rather than the sandy islands along the country's North Sea coast.

For a quiet getaway, CNN recommends Schiermonnikoog in the West Frisian Islands, located off the north coast of Netherlands, in a shallow area of ​​the North Sea called the Wadden Sea.

With a population of just 950 people and a lonely town, Schier – as the locals call their island – is a national park, covered in sand dunes and forests and with some of the most pristine beaches in Europe.

'Except from its beautiful nature and vastness, there is not much to do on the island. And that's exactly its charm,” says Annemarieke Romeijn, who has a holiday home in Schiermonnikoog and has been visiting it all her life.

Visitors can go amber 'hunting' on the island's beaches, learn kitesurfing and cycle or hike its trails.

Heimaey, Vestmannaeyjar, Iceland

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The island where you will see more Atlantic Fritters (aka as puffins, these are small penguin-colored birds with distinctive beaks) rather than humans. After all, its population is 4,500 people compared to almost 1 million puffins!

Heimaey in the Vestmannaeyjar (Westman Islands), off the south coast of Iceland, looks like something out of a fairy tale, with emerald hills dotted with sheep, a black sand beach and sea caves along its rugged coastline.

As soon as you reach Heimaey, the view will take your breath away: the harbor is surrounded by high hills inhabited by various species of seabirds.

A cataclysmic volcanic eruption in 1973 covered the area with 200 million tons of ash and lava, but miraculously there was only one fatality. Today, it's completely peaceful, with secluded hiking trails to explore and endless ocean views.

Flores Island, Azores, Portugal

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One of the most remote islands in an already remote archipelago, Flores Island is a nature lover's dream.

Craters with blue lakes, vivid green slopes, waterfalls and hot springs are among the unusual attractions on the 55-square-mile volcanic island that is home to about 3,400 people.


One of the most magical sites in Flores is Rocha dos Bordões, an interesting columnar geological formation, dressed in green, that looks like a dinosaur movie set.

Naustholmen, Norway

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Visitors must fly into Bodø in Northern Norway and then continue north by boat to reach this private island owned by Randi Skaug, the first Norwegian woman to climb Mount Everest.

The island features just three houses with rooms. Visitors can spend their days kayaking on white sand beaches surrounded by clear blue waters or hiking to nearby peaks for views of the Lofoten Islands to the north.

They can also just curl up in a hammock and do absolutely nothing, surrounded by the silence and beauty of this remote place.

Tiree Island, Scotland

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A look at the turquoise and deep sapphire waters and the perfect waves for surfing make it clear why the Isle of Tiree is sometimes referred to as the Hawaii of the North.

The westernmost island in the Inner Hebrides archipelago, off the west coast of Scotland, Tiree is known for its mild climate , fresh air and beautiful white sand beaches. In August the water temperature reaches 14 degrees Celsius.

The flat island offers easy hiking and biking trails.

Berlengas Archipelago, Portugal

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One of Portugal's most stunning island destinations awaits visitors arriving by boat for day trips or camping.

Located in the Berlengas Archipelago, a cluster of mostly uninhabited islands within the UNESCO Berlengas Biosphere Reserve.

The archipelago is best known for São João Baptista, a fortress dating back to the 1600s.

The landscape is arid but beautiful and the sight of the Atlantic Ocean “lapping” the islands is spectacular. The archipelago is one of the best diving spots in Portugal, thanks to the unique currents and climate influenced by the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean.

Alicudi, Sicily, Italy

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Wild and rugged, Aliduci is the most remote and least populated of the seven volcanic Aeolian Islands, off the northern coast of Sicily.

“It is the wildest island of Sicily. They still use donkeys to transport goods to Alicudi,” says Sicilian Francesco Curione. “If you want peace and feel like a castaway, this is the place.”

The island is like a postcard: a volcanic landscape combined with colorful fishing boats.

There are no cars or hotels on this island of 100 inhabitants, so finding a quiet spot all to yourself is never a problem.

The higher you walk along the lava stone steps leading up the volcanic slopes, the deeper the silence.

Skyros, Greece

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For Skyros, CNN reports that it is a calmer experience compared to the crowds of Santorini and Mykonos.

There are plenty of secluded beaches to explore, a Byzantine castle towering over the town and the sea as well as tiny Scyrian horses.

< p>With the exception of the Halloween season, when the famous carnival sets the island into a non-stop party rhythm, with parades, costumes, feasts and a deluge of Athenians, Skyros is an extremely peaceful place.

Island Rathlin, Northern Ireland

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Six miles long in emerald hue and only a mile wide , Rathlin Island off the coast of Northern Ireland is home to only about 150 permanent residents.

Visitors can enjoy the wild rocks that are battered by the sea and that are home to thousands of birds. At the same time, they can also see colonies of seals in more remote places.

This wild island offers hiking trails, as well as diving opportunities. Experienced divers can explore the many shipwrecks on the high seas, including the HMS Drake, torpedoed by a German U-boat during World War I.

Don't miss a visit to Rathlin West Light, a lighthouse built upside down on the rocks.

Fasta Åland, Finland

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In the Gulf of Bothnia between Sweden and Finland, the Åland archipelago has more than 6,500 islands, of which only about 60 are inhabited.

These islands belong to Finland, but are considered an autonomous region and are only 25 miles from Sweden, while the official language is Swedish.


Fasta Åland is the largest island in the archipelago and a good base for exploring.

Cycle around nearby islands connected by ferry and bridges, or just enjoy the sauna and sea view .

Photos: Shutterstock, Unsplash

Source: www.kathimerini.com.cy

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