Spin the globe, pick a spot and odds are good you’ll alight on the color blue: 71% of the Earth’s surface is covered with water.
Vast stretches of ocean spread from the edges of the continents, and what lies between the coasts is true wilderness. Far from terrestrial plants and light-filled shallows, the open ocean makes no accommodation for human comfort or survival.
Islands are the exception. These widely scattered landing places offer respite in the form of fresh water, abundant food and the occasional fruity cocktail.
Maybe that’s the travel secret behind the evocative power of beautiful islands. Like the rainforest-cloaked island of Kaua’i, some are the summits of drowned volcanoes, smoking and burning above the waterline. Others, such as the Seychelles, are the scattered shards of continents, while atolls are coral crusted over a sinking landmass.