Some of the world's most beautiful islands are also some of the weirdest in terms of shape. Take Hawaii's Molokini, which is shaped like a crescent moon, and Galesnjak in the Adriatic, which is perfectly heart-shaped. We've collected our top weird and wonderful-shaped islands around the world. Let us know if your favourite isn't here and we'll add it!
World's weirdest shaped islands
Weird and beautiful islands around the world
The largest island of the Galapagos Islands in Ecuador is the most volcanically active and amazingly shaped like a sea horse. Isabela Island is home to an abundance of land tortoises and active volcanoes that could erupt at any moment. Iguanas, penguins and pelicans are also found on the island, and there are many parts of Isabela for visitors to explore, such as the tranquil southern town of Puerto Villamil and the second largest crater in the world, Sierra Negra.
The small and unusual island located south of Poda in Thailand is called Koh Kai or Chicken Island due to its large rock formation that resembles the head and neck of a chicken. With cliffs covered in vegetation, a beautiful beach and plenty of coral reefs and tropical fish for snorkellers to explore, Chicken Island is perfect for a day trip if you're staying in Krabi and is reached by longboat, lying just 30 minutes away.
The heart-shaped Galesnjak Island in Croatia is the perfect spot for lovers and is one of the world's few naturally-occurring heart-shaped islands. Also known as the Island of Love or Lover's Island, the tiny, deserted island is full of wild plants and trees. It is located in the Zadarski Kanal between Zadar and the Island of Pasman, and there are just two ways of reaching the lover's retreat - by renting a Love Story boat or jumping on a taxi boat. Sail Dalmatia offers tailor-made visits to the island, where you can even rent Galesnjak for the weekend!
This breathtaking coral reef island off the north coast of the undiscovered Flores Island in Indonesia is shaped like a dolphin swimming out of the sea. Flores is home to great diving sites, pristine lakes and mysterious caves. There is a chain of volcanoes along the 450km-long island, as well as prehistoric heritage sites and traditional villages. Some of the sea life found around Flores includes huge manta rays, dolphins, dugongs and whales. Image: Flickr/Mangiwau
The island of Tasmania, known to Aussies as Tassie, is the same size as Ireland and shaped like a Tasmanian devil or tiger, with two smaller islands above the main island resembling the ears of the creature. Also shaped like a heart, it's known as 'Love Island', while there's a famous expression among Australians which refers to female pubic hair as a 'map of Tassie'!
In the extreme south of the Maldives lies the eye-shaped Hadahaa Island, which is protected by a 360-degree house reef that rings the island and sits just 30 metres from the beach. Deep in the heart of the island you'll find the Park Hyatt Maldives, a paradise resort perfect for exploring the stunning coral reef around the island and enjoying an idyllic holiday in the Maldives.
This stunning shot of Canada's Belcher Islands looks like sweeping brushstrokes of pink and green against the deep blue of Hudson Bay. The Belcher Islands' only inhabitants live in the small town of Sanikiluaq, near the upper end of the middle island, and despite the green hues in the image, the 1,500 rocky islands that make up the archipelago are too cold for many plants and trees to survive. The satellite image was taken by the U.S. Geological Survey and shows the planet Earth as a work of art as part of a collection of photos from space.
The small, crescent moon-shaped island of Molokini located just five kilometres from the Hawaiian island of Maui is a paradise for divers with its reef-filled waters and over 250 species of tropical fish. There are tours available from Maalaea Harbour and the best time to explore the island, which is also a State Marine Life and Bird Conservation District, is in the early morning. If you're visiting in winter don't miss whale watching.
They may not be natural but Dubai's Palm and World Islands are certainly some of the most iconic islands of the world. The man-made Palm Islands measure five by five kilometres and cover a total area larger than 800 football pitches! They were built using one billions cubic metres of dredged sand and stone taken from Dubai's seabed and sculpted into individual islands that make up two palm shapes. Similarly, The World is made up of 300 man-made islands that resemble the entire world when seen from above. Luxury villas, hotels, shopping malls and water theme parks can be found on the islands.
Pulau Manukan, Pulau Mamutik and Pulau Sulug are three islands in Malaysia that welcome visitors flying over them with a smile on their face! They are part of a cluster of five islands that include Pulau Gaya and Pulau Sapi, making up the Tunku Abdul Rahman Park in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo. The smiling islands are characterised by shallow waters, coral gardens and spectacular white beaches. Image: Wikimedia Commons/Flickr/thienzieyung