Where is it? The Cocos (Keeling) Islands lie 2750km north-west of Perth in the Indian Ocean
How to see it for yourself?
Virgin Australia flies to the Cocos (Keeling) Islands from Perth via Christmas Island. Comprising the South Keeling Islands (which ring a central lagoon) and the separate North Keeling Island, only two of the 27 islands are inhabited. These coral atolls were visited by Charles Darwin in 1836 and his studies here contributed to his theory on how coral reefs form. The islands were settled for copra production in 1826 and the small population is descended from the original, mostly Malay Muslim workers. They voted to become part of Australia in 1984. A quintessential tropical paradise, you come here to dive, snorkel, camp, surf, kite-surf, birdwatch and chill out, not party.
Why I love it
“The image is taken from the south end of West Island looking over the lagoon. Sometimes the water is glassed off, sometimes it’s littered with colourful kite-surfing sails, and sometimes it has the most magical sunsets and moon rises! All together on a beautiful and remote tropical island.” – Jules Bush, Cocos Keeling Islands Visitor Centre