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Discovering a tropical island paradise that hasn’t lost its authentic beauty to stampeding tourists yet is a rare occurrence nowadays. If you were to visit the island of Koh Phi Phi in Thailand during the early 1990s, you would have found beautiful coral reef systems, untouched marine fauna and crystal clear blue waters — fast-forward to 2017 and you’ll find fast food restaurants and hotels on every corner. What was once an immaculate tropical island has since suffered major damage due to increasing amounts of visitors. Here are five beautiful under-the-radar tropical places to visit before the tourists take over.

This enchanting little village perched on the eastern half of Busuanga Island is without a doubt one of the most stunning tropical places I’ve had the pleasure of visiting. Eight years ago the entire island was without roads, phone lines or even a water system, but word has begun to spread and its recent growth has me worried that a steep spike in tourism is looming just around the corner — just look at what happened to its neighboring island, Boracay, over the past 10 years. If you visit Coron Island today, you’ll have the option to hop around 3,000 little islands, scuba dive in a plethora of clear water locations including Kayangan Lake, climb up mountains with breathtaking views, swim in natural hot springs and eat like a local without a Starbucks in sight.
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A swimmers’ snorkel is a tube typically about 30 centimeters long and with an inside diameter of between 1.5 and 2.5 centimeters, usually L- or J-shaped and fitted with a mouthpiece at the lower end; constructed of rubber and plastic. It is used for breathing air from above the water surface when the wearer's mouth and nose are submerged. The snorkel usually has a piece of rubber that attaches the snorkel to the outside of the strap of the diving mask.
Snorkeling is mentioned by Aristotle in his Parts of Animals. He refers to divers using "instruments for respiration" resembling the elephant's trunk.[11] Some evidence suggests that snorkeling may have originated in Crete some 5,000 years ago as sea sponge farmers used hollowed out reeds to submerge and retrieve natural sponge for use in trade and commerce.[12] In the fifteenth century, Leonardo da Vinci drew designs for an underwater breathing device consisting of cane tubes with a mask to cover the mouth at the demand end and a float to keep the tubes above water at the supply end.[13][14] The following timeline traces the modern history of the swimmers' snorkel during the twentieth and twenty-first centuries.
Hi Kyle… interesting roundup. I’ve been to most of the places you mention over the past twelve years — the period of time I have been living as a “global gypsy.” I know San Marcos well, love the Oaxaca coast, used to really love my village in Goa until the tourists discovered it, and I really love Africa — for those who want a chill cheap life, Swaziland is an interesting choice, hugged by South Africa and Mozambique. It home to the Bushfire Festival, one of the most acclaimed music/ art/ culture/festivals in the world. I also really love Kenya and the beautiful Diani Beach. Ok, here’s my current situation: I have grown weary (and older!) of living out of a backpack and am currently looking for a base. I have also accidentally adopted a rescue dog and am traveling with him. As such I need a beach destination with calm waters b/c he loves to swim — so Oaxaca is out. I also make and sell jewelry so some tourists are needed. I am currently on Roatan and it is just not resonating. It is more expensive than I expected and doesn’t seem to have that sort of “mindful” community I prefer. So… any suggestions? I’m really stymied… I sometimes feel there is such a thing as too much freedom… peace and out.
These little coral islands are surrounded by excellent diving, snorkeling, and white sand beaches, and are filled with friendly locals. Private resorts litter the islands, and a vacation here is also very pricey. Luckily, Bangkok Airways offers cheap flights to and from Thailand. The best time to go to the Maldives is from November to May, when the weather is cool and dry. June through October sees wetter and hotter weather due to the monsoon season.
Some of the most relaxing vacations mean finding a secluded spot where you can unplug from the stress of modern life. The Cook Islands is a secluded paradise with welcoming people, great dancers, drummers and singers, with strong Polynesian traditions and culture that make visiting the islands so memorable. The largest island and the home of the capital Avarua, is Rarotonga. Avarua is famous for its fascinating churches made of white coral, and don’t miss the islands Saturday market. Northeast of Rarotonga, visitors to Atiu may want to learn about the local “moonshine” known as tumunu at a local bush beer school. Neighboring Mitiaro stands in water 14,750 feet deep and has white coral streets lined with bright orange Pumarumaru trees. Although it is surrounded by coral reefs and is home to many underground caves and lakes, Ma’uke is known as “the garden island.” Finally, the second largest and oldest island is Mangaia, a beautiful location known for its fossilized coral, otherwise known as “makatea.”
Located on the eastern coast of Malaysia, the Perhentians consist of two islands. Both are stunningly covered with a lot of palm trees, wide beaches, and crystal blue water. There’s not much to do here, and visitors typically lay on the beach all day, resting from last night’s drinking. It’s the perfect place to put up a hammock. A strong monsoon season limits when to go to between March and October. During the other times, it’s best to head to Thailand, where the weather is nicer.

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Lounging by the water is great but at some point you'll want to take a break, so be sure to throw a cute cover-up and sandals in your bag, too. If you're planning a jaunt to the beach as part of a longer vacation, you'll be glad to know that we also have a great selection of resort looks perfect for keeping cool and looking hot at dinner, a show, or on the deck of a cruise ship. Lulus is where to buy cute bikinis and everything else you need to look fabulous for any occasion--and in any location. Get Instagram-ready looks for the club, polished and professional styles for the office, and pretty formal dresses for special occasions.
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