Island | Definition, Types, Examples, Facts, Area Size, Population

What is an Island?

Islands are strips of land that are not connected to the mainland and are surrounded by water. Islets are sometimes called dunes, keys, or islets. A group of islands is often referred to as an archipelago.

There are two types of islands; Continental islands and Oceanic islands.

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Continental islands are part of the continental shelf. An example of this is the United Kingdom which is an island located on the continental shelf of Europe.

Oceanic islands are islands that are not on the continental shelf. Many of the islands under the ocean were formed by underwater volcanoes like Hawaii in the Pacific Ocean.

Here below we have provided some of the main islands in the world:


Greenland is by far the largest island in the world that is not a continent. It has an area of ​​822,706 square miles, twice the second largest island, New Guinea. For such a large island, Greenland is home to only about 56,000 people, making it one of the least densely populated places in the world. Indeed, much of Greenland is covered by a layer of ice. Greenland is part of the North American continent, but politically it is generally part of Europe through the country Denmark.

Great Britain

Great Britain is the ninth largest island in the world and the largest of the British Isles. It is the third most populous island in the world. The British Empire was centered here and at its height from the 18th to 20th centuries was the largest empire in world history. It is part of Europe and is located off the northwest coast of France.


Madagascar is the fourth largest island in the world. It is located off the southeastern coast of Africa. Madagascar is home to many species of animals and plants found nowhere else on the planet. About 80% of the plants and animals on the island are found only in Madagascar. It is so unique that some scientists call it the eighth continent.


Honshu is the largest island that makes up the country of Japan. It is the seventh largest and second most populous island after Java with a population of over 100 million. The highest mountain in Honshu is the famous volcano Fuji and the largest city is Tokyo.


Luzon is the main island of a large number of islands that make up the country of the Philippines. It is the fifth most populous island in the world and is home to the city of Manila. Manila Bay is considered one of the best natural harbors in the world due to its size and location.

Interesting Facts about Islands of the World

Java is the most populous island in the world with more than 130 million inhabitants.

The highest mountain on an island is Puncak Jaya on the island of New Guinea.

Some islands are man-made. An example of this is Kansai Airport in Japan, located on an artificial island.

The term uninhabited island is an uninhabited island. This does not mean that the island is a desert, but rather that it is deserted.

Napoleon Bonaparte was born in Corsica.

The largest island in the Mediterranean is Sicily.

About 1 in 6 people on this planet live on an island.

Top 10 Islands by Area Size:

Country Area (Sq. Miles)
Greenland 822706
New Guinea 303381
Borneo 288869
Madagascar 226917
Baffin Island 195928
Sumatra 171069
Honshu 87182
Victoria Island 83897
Great Britain 80823
Ellesmere Island 75767

Top 10 Islands by Population

Island Population (Till Date)
Java (Indonesia) 148,756,685 (2021)
Honshu (Japan) 104,000,000 (2017)
Great Britain (United Kingdom) 66,397,821 (2021)
Sumatra (Indonesia) 59,185,500 (2021)
Luzon (Philippines) 64,260,312 (2021)
Taiwan (Republic of China) 23,865,820 (2021)
Sri Lanka (Sri Lanka) 21,919,000 (2021)
Mindanao (Philippines) 27,021,036 (2021)
Madagascar (Madagascar) 28,479,665 (2021)
Hispaniolaominican (Republic, Haiti) 22,278,000(2020)