Sipping cocktails by the seashore, diving on a perfect reef or basking in midnight sun above the Arctic Circle – whatever your dream, somewhere out there is the right island for you. Jill Crawshaw reveals the world’s most fabulous castaway experiences
1 Mnemba Island, Zanzibar
Barefoot luxury is the theme at Mnemba, the heart-shaped coral atoll which has been voted one of the most romantic islands in the world. You’ll kick off your sandals when you wade ashore from the boat bringing you from Zanzibar.
Your HQ will be a banda, or cottage, made from handwoven palm, thatch and driftwood, with a verandah and your own patch of shell-strewn sand. There are only 10 of them hidden among the casuarina trees, so you are more likely to meet a turtle or flock of waders than your nearest neighbour as you stroll around the island.
Why head for the airport when there is plenty to occupy you closer to home, says Samatha Warwick
Win a home break
See Stonehenge at dawn
By day, you could take your place in the traffic jam that regularly snakes nine miles from Salisbury on the A303. A better option (summer solstice aside) is to set your alarm so you hit the site at sunrise.
· Guide Friday (01225 444102) operates two-hour tours to Stonehenge from Salisbury (around £13.50).
2 Walk Hadrian’s Wall
You can’t quite see it from space, but at 73 miles Hadrian’s Wall was the greatest single engineering project undertaken by the Roman Empire and is now a World Heritage Site. The country’s newest national trail – the Hadrian’s Wall Path – sweeps over the north of England’s hills and moorland.
· Hadrian’s Wall Tourism Partnership (01434 322002).