List of island countries
This is a list of island countries. An island is a landmass (smaller than a continent) that is surrounded by water. Many island countries are spread over an archipelago, as is the case with the Federated States of Micronesia and Indonesia (both of which consist of thousands of islands). Others consist of a single island, such as Barbados or Nauru, or part of an island, such as the Dominican Republic or Brunei. Australia is a continent, although it has historically been referred to as an island, due to it having no land borders. The list also includes states with limited diplomatic recognition which have de facto control over territories entirely on the islands, such as Taiwan.[n 1] Indonesia is the world's largest island country by area (1,904,569 km2), and by total number of islands (more than 18,307), and is also the world's most populous island country, with a population of 267,670,543 (the fourth-largest population in the world, after China, India, and the United States).
Sovereign states and states with limited recognitionEdit
|Name||ISO code||Geographic configuration||Geologic location||Area (km2)||Population ||Population
|Geographic location||Establishment/ Independence|
|Antigua and Barbuda||AG
|Two main islands (Antigua, Barbuda)||Continental shelf||442||97,120||220||Caribbean Sea, Lesser Antilles||1981 November 1|
|Archipelago||Continental shelf||13,939||389,480||28||Atlantic Ocean, Lucayan Archipelago||1973 July 10|
|Archipelago (centered around Bahrain Island)||Continental shelf||778||1,641,170||2,109||Persian Gulf||1971 December 10|
|One island||Continental shelf[n 2]||430||287,020||667||Caribbean Sea, Lesser Antilles||1966 November 30|
|Part of a larger island (Borneo)||Continental shelf||5,765||433,290||75||Maritime Southeast Asia||1984 February 23|
|Archipelago||Oceanic||4,033||549,930||136||Atlantic Ocean, Macaronesia||1975 July 5|
|Archipelago||Oceanic||1,861||850,890||457||Indian Ocean, Africa, Comoros Islands||1975 July 6|
|One main island, and several smaller islands (Isla de la Juventud, etc.)||Continental shelf||109,884||11,346,346||103||Caribbean Sea, Greater Antilles||1868 October 10 |
1902 May 20
|Part of a larger island (Cyprus)||Continental shelf||9,251||888,005||96||Mediterranean Sea||1960 October 1|
|One island||Continental shelf||754||71,810||95||Caribbean Sea, Lesser Antilles||1978 November 3|
|Part of a larger island (Hispaniola), and several smaller islands (Alto Velo, Catalina, Saona, Beata, etc.)||Continental shelf||48,671||10,738,960||221||Caribbean Sea, Greater Antilles||1821 December 1 |
1844 February 27
|Part of a larger island (Timor)||Oceanic||14,919||1,293,120||87||Maritime Southeast Asia, Lesser Sunda Islands||2002 May 20|
|Archipelago||Oceanic||18,274||889,950||49||Pacific Ocean, Melanesia||1970 October 10|
|One main island, two dependencies (Carriacou, Petite Martinique)||Continental shelf||344||112,000||326||Caribbean Sea, Lesser Antilles||1974 February 7|
|Part of a larger island (Hispaniola), and several smaller islands (Gonave, Tortuga, Les Cayemites, etc.)||Continental shelf||27,750||11,743,017||423||Caribbean Sea, Greater Antilles||1804 January 1|
|One main island||Oceanic[n 4]||102,775||361,310||4||Atlantic Ocean||1944 June 17|
|Archipelago, including parts of larger islands (Borneo, New Guinea, Sebatik, and Timor)||Various[n 5]||1,904,569||270,625,570||142||Maritime Southeast Asia, Indian and Pacific oceans||1945 August 17|
|Part of a larger island (Ireland), and several smaller islands||Continental shelf||70,273||4,977,400||71||Atlantic Ocean, British Isles||1919 January 21|
|One main island, and several small islands (Port Royal Cays, etc.)||Continental shelf||10,991||2,734,092||249||Caribbean Sea, Greater Antilles||1962 August 6|
|Archipelago (Japanese archipelago)||Continental shelf||377,976||126,264,930||334||Pacific Ocean, East Asia||660 BC February 11 [n 6]|
|Archipelago||Oceanic||811||117,610||145||Pacific Ocean, Micronesia||1979 July 12|
|One main island||Continental shelf [n 7]||587,041||26,969,310||46||Indian Ocean, Africa||1960 June 26|
|Archipelago||Oceanic||298||383,976||1,289||Indian Ocean, Laccadive Sea||1965 July 26|
|Archipelago||Continental shelf||316||502,650||1,591||Mediterranean Sea||1964 September 21|
|Marshall Islands[n 8]||MH
|Archipelago||Oceanic||181||58,790||325||Pacific Ocean, Micronesia||1979 May 1|
|Archipelago||Oceanic||2,040||1,265,710||620||Indian Ocean, Africa, Mascarene Islands||1968 March 12|
|Micronesia, Federated States of[n 8]||FM
|Archipelago||Oceanic||702||113,810||162||Pacific Ocean, Micronesia||1979 May 10|
|One island||Oceanic||21||12,580||599||Pacific Ocean, Micronesia||1968 January 31|
|Two main islands (North Island and South Island) plus other smaller islands||Continental shelf [n 9]||270,467||5,125,451||19||Pacific Ocean, Polynesia||1907 September 26|
|Northern Cyprus[n 10]||CY
|Part of a larger island (Cyprus)||Continental shelf||3,355||313,626||93||Mediterranean Sea||1974 July 20|
|Archipelago||Oceanic||459||18,010||39||Pacific Ocean, Micronesia||1981 January 1|
|Papua New Guinea||PG
|Part of a larger island (New Guinea), and several smaller islands||Continental shelf||462,840||8,776,110||19||Pacific Ocean, Melanesia||1975 September 16|
|Archipelago||Continental shelf||300,000||108,116,620||360||Maritime Southeast Asia||1898 June 12 |
1946 July 4
|Saint Kitts and Nevis||KN
|Two main islands (St. Kitts, Nevis)||Continental shelf||261||52,830||202||Caribbean Sea, Lesser Antilles||1983 September 19|
|One main island||Continental shelf||616||182,790||297||Caribbean Sea, Lesser Antilles||1979 February 22|
|Saint Vincent and the Grenadines||VC
|Archipelago||Continental shelf||389||110,590||284||Caribbean Sea, Lesser Antilles||1979 October 27|
|Archipelago||Oceanic||2,842||197,100||69||Pacific Ocean, Polynesia||1962 June 1|
|São Tomé and Príncipe||ST
|Two main islands (São Tomé Island, Príncipe)||Continental shelf||1,001||215,060||215||Atlantic Ocean, Gulf of Guinea, Africa||1975 July 12|
|Archipelago||Various[n 11]||455||97,630||215||Indian Ocean, Africa||1976 June 29|
|One main island, plus other smaller islands||Continental shelf||728||5,703,570||7,831||Maritime Southeast Asia||1965 August 9|
|Archipelago||Oceanic||28,400||669,820||24||Pacific Ocean, Melanesia||1978 July 7|
|One main island, plus other small islands||Continental shelf||65,610||21,803,000||332||Indian Ocean, South Asia||1948 February 4|
|Republic of China (Taiwan)[n 1]||TW
|One main island, and several smaller islands||Continental shelf||36,193||23,603,121||652||Pacific Ocean, East Asia||1912 January 1 |
1949 December 7 [n 12]
|Archipelago||Oceanic||748||104,490||140||Pacific Ocean, Polynesia||1970 June 4|
|Trinidad and Tobago||TT
|Two main islands (Trinidad, Tobago) plus other smaller islands||Continental shelf||5,131||1,394,970||272||Caribbean Sea, Lesser Antilles||1962 August 31|
|Archipelago||Oceanic||26||11,650||448||Pacific Ocean, Polynesia||1978 October 1|
|United Kingdom[n 13]||GB or UK
|One main island, part of second island (Ireland), plus several minor islands||Continental shelf||244,820||67,886,004||277||Atlantic Ocean, British Isles||1707 May 1|
|Archipelago||Oceanic||12,189||299,880||25||Pacific Ocean, Melanesia||1980 July 30|
Associated states, dependencies, and other notable territoriesEdit
|Name||Geographic configuration||Geologic location||Sovereign state||Area (km2)||Population||Density
|Åland Islands||Archipelago[n 14]||Continental shelf||Finland||1,580||28,355||17.9||Baltic Sea, Gulf of Bothnia|
|American Samoa[n 15]||Archipelago||Oceanic||United States||199||54,947||276||Pacific Ocean, Polynesia|
|Anguilla||One main island||Continental shelf||United Kingdom||91||15,423||169||Caribbean Sea, Lesser Antilles|
|Aruba||One main island||Continental shelf||Netherlands||180||107,635||598||Caribbean Sea, Lesser Antilles|
|Bermuda||Archipelago||Oceanic||United Kingdom||53.3||62,500||1,170||Atlantic Ocean, North America|
|British Indian Ocean Territory||Archipelago||Oceanic||United Kingdom||60||3,000||50||Indian Ocean|
|British Virgin Islands||Archipelago||Continental shelf||United Kingdom||151||31,148||206||Caribbean Sea, Lesser Antilles|
|Caribbean Netherlands||Three main islands||Continental shelf||Netherlands||127||21,133||166||Caribbean Sea|
|Cayman Islands||Three islands||Continental shelf||United Kingdom||264||52,560||199||Caribbean Sea, Greater Antilles|
|Christmas Island||One main island||Oceanic||Australia||135||1,496||11.1||Indian Ocean, Australasia|
|Cocos (Keeling) Islands||Archipelago||Oceanic||Australia||14||596||42.6||Indian Ocean, Australasia|
|Cook Islands[n 16]||Archipelago||Oceanic||New Zealand||236||10,777||45.7||Pacific Ocean, Polynesia|
|Curaçao||One main island||Continental shelf||Netherlands||444||145,834||328||Caribbean Sea, Lesser Antilles|
|Easter Island||One Island||Oceanic||Chile||163.6||6,148||37.5||Pacific Ocean, Polynesia|
|Falkland Islands||Two main islands||Continental shelf||United Kingdom[n 17]||12,173||3,140||0.26||Atlantic Ocean, South America|
|Faroe Islands||Archipelago||Continental shelf||Denmark||1,393||49,483||35.5||Atlantic Ocean|
|French Polynesia||Archipelago||Oceanic||France||3,827||274,512||71.7||Pacific Ocean, Polynesia|
|Greenland||One main island with archipelagos||Continental shelf||Denmark||2,166,086||57,695||0.03||North America|
|Guadeloupe||One main island||Continental Shelf||France||1,628||405,500||250||Caribbean Sea, Lesser Antilles|
|Guam[n 15]||One main island||Oceanic||United States||544||159,914||293||Pacific Ocean, Micronesia|
|Guernsey[n 18]||Three main islands||Continental shelf||United Kingdom||78||65,849||844||English Channel, Channel Islands|
|Isle of Man[n 18]||One main island||Continental shelf||United Kingdom||572||85,421||149||Irish Sea, British Isles|
|Jersey[n 18]||One main island||Continental shelf||United Kingdom||116||94,949||819||English Channel, Channel Islands|
|Martinique||One island||Continental shelf||France||1,128||403,795||360||Caribbean Sea, Lesser Antilles|
|Mayotte||One main island||Oceanic||France||374||194,000||498.5||Indian Ocean, Africa, Comoros Islands|
|Montserrat||One main island||Continental shelf||United Kingdom||102||5,164||50.6||Caribbean Sea, Lesser Antilles|
|New Caledonia||One main island||Continental shelf[n 9]||France||18,275||260,166||14.2||Pacific Ocean, Melanesia|
|Niue[n 16]||One main island||Oceanic||New Zealand||260||1,269||4.9||Pacific Ocean, Polynesia|
|Norfolk Island||One main island||Continental shelf[n 9]||Australia||36||2,182||60.6||Pacific Ocean, Melanesia|
|Northern Mariana Islands[n 15]||Archipelago||Oceanic||United States||464||51,395||111||Pacific Ocean, Micronesia|
|Pitcairn, Henderson, Ducie and Oeno Islands||Archipelago||Oceanic||United Kingdom||47||48||1.0||Pacific Ocean, Polynesia|
|Puerto Rico[n 15]||One main island, archipelago||Continental shelf||United States||8,870||3,690,923||416||Caribbean Sea, Greater Antilles|
|Réunion||One main island||Oceanic||France||2,512||893,500||330||Indian Ocean, Africa, Mascarene Islands|
|Saint Barthélemy||One main island||Continental shelf||France||21||7,332||349||Caribbean Sea, Lesser Antilles|
|Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha||Three main islands distant from each other||Oceanic||United Kingdom||308||7,728||25.1||Atlantic Ocean|
|Saint Martin||Part of a larger island (Saint Martin)||Continental shelf||France||54.4||30,959||569||Caribbean Sea, Lesser Antilles|
|Saint Pierre and Miquelon||Two main islands||Continental shelf||France||242||5,831||24.1||North America|
|Sint Maarten||Part of a larger island (Saint Martin)||Continental shelf||Netherlands||34||39,088||1,150||Caribbean Sea, Lesser Antilles|
|South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands||Archipelago||Continental shelf||United Kingdom[n 17]||3,903||30||0.008||Atlantic Ocean|
|Sovereign Base Areas of Akrotiri and Dhekelia||Part of a larger island (Cyprus)||Continental shelf||United Kingdom||254||15,700||61.8||Mediterranean Sea|
|Svalbard[n 19]||Archipelago||Continental shelf||Norway||62,045||2,752||0.03||Arctic Ocean|
|Tokelau[n 16]||Archipelago||Oceanic||New Zealand||12||1,368||114||Pacific Ocean, Polynesia|
|Turks and Caicos Islands||Archipelago||Continental shelf||United Kingdom||948||46,335||48.9||Atlantic Ocean, Lucayan Archipelago|
|U.S. Virgin Islands[n 15]||Archipelago||Continental shelf||United States||346||105,275||304||Caribbean Sea, Lesser Antilles|
|Wallis and Futuna||Three main islands||Oceanic||France||264||15,289||57.9||Pacific Ocean, Polynesia|
Former sovereign island nations and primarily island-based countriesEdit
- East Asia
- Southeast Asia
- Aceh Sultanate
- Aru Kingdom
- Bali Kingdom
- Sultanate of Banjar
- Banten Sultanate
- Blambangan Kingdom
- Bruneian Empire
- Buton Sultanate
- Kingdom of Butuan
- Sultanate of Cirebon
- Sultanate of Deli
- Demak Sultanate
- Galuh Kingdom
- Sultanate of Gowa
- Kediri Kingdom
- Lanfang Republic
- Sultanate of Maguindanao
- Mataram Sultanate
- Medang Kingdom
- Melayu Kingdom
- Pagaruyung Kingdom
- First Philippine Republic
- Pontianak Sultanate
- Riau-Lingga Sultanate
- Sultanate of Sambas
- Kingdom of Sarawak
- Sultanate of Siak
- Kingdom of Singapura
- Sultanate of Sulu
- Sunda Kingdom
- Sultanate of Ternate
- Sultanate of Tidore
- South Asia
- West Asia
- Mediterranean Sea
- Archaic Greek city-states
- Kingdom of Corsica (1736)
- Corsican Republic
- Anglo-Corsican Kingdom
- Emirate of Crete
- Cretan State
- Kingdom of Cyprus
- Duchy of the Archipelago
- Gozo (independent state)
- Hospitaller Malta
- Hospitaller Rhodes
- Kingdom of Majorca
- Triarchy of Negroponte
- Sardinian Judicati
- Republic of Sassari
- Emirate of Sicily
- Kingdom of Sicily, (1282-1816) [n 22]
- North Europe/West Europe
- Commonwealth of England / Commonwealth of England, Scotland and Ireland
- Kingdom of England
- Kingdom of Great Britain
- Heptarchy (seven kingdoms before the unification of England )
- Kingdom of Mann and the Isles
- Commonwealth of Iceland
- Kingdom of Iceland
- Gaelic Ireland
- Norman Ireland
- Kingdom of Ireland
- Irish Free State[n 23]
- Soviet Republic of Naissaar
- Kingdom of Scotland (Kingdom of Alba before the First War of Scottish Independence)
- Kingdom of Strathclyde
- Principality of Wales
Former colonies, possessions, protectorates, and other territoriesEdit
- Cape Breton Island, now part of Nova Scotia, Canada
- Danish West Indies, now the United States Virgin Islands
- The Territory of Hawaii, now Hawaii, a state of the United States
- Hong Kong Island (1841–1860), now a part of Hong Kong, a special administrative region of China[n 24]
- United States of the Ionian Islands, protectorate of the United Kingdom.
- Septinsular Republic, protectorate in the Ionian Islands under nominal Russo-Ottoman joint sovereignty.
- Labuan, briefly part of British North Borneo, the Straits Settlements and Sabah, now a federal territory of Malaysia
- Mayotte, now an overseas department and region of France
- Colony of Newfoundland (1583–1907) [n 25]
- New Hebrides, now Vanuatu
- Prince Edward Island, now a province of Canada
- Réunion, now an overseas department and region of France
- Saint Christopher-Nevis-Anguilla, former British overseas territory dissolved in 1983.
- Socotra Archipelago, now a governorate of Yemen
- Tasmania, now a state of Australia, shares a land boundary with Victoria (Australia) on Boundary Islet
- Vancouver Island, now a part of British Columbia, Canada
- People's Republic of Zanzibar, now a member of the United Republic of Tanzania.
- Archipelagic state
- List of archipelagos
- List of Caribbean island countries by population
- List of countries that border only one other country
- List of divided islands
- List of islands
- List of islands by area
- List of islands by population
- List of islands by population density
- List of Oceanian countries by population
- List of sovereign states and dependent territories in Oceania
- List of sovereign states and dependent territories in the Indian Ocean
- Small Island Developing States
- Since the conclusion of the Chinese Civil War, the Republic of China (ROC) retains actual rule over the islands of Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen, the Matsu, and other minor islands, all of which are collectively known as "Free Area" or Taiwan Area in contrast to Mainland China being under communist rule, thus making it a de facto island nation, and has become known colloquially as simply "Taiwan" due to the island of Taiwan forming the majority of the ROC-controlled territories; nonetheless, the ROC has not officially renounced its constitutional-defined territories which include areas effectively controlled by the People's Republic of China, Mongolia, Tuva (a Russian republic) etc. If claimed territories were taken into account, the ROC would not be a borderless country, nor a country centred around a major island. The ROC-controlled territories are also claimed by the People's Republic of China. See: Political status of Taiwan, Two Chinas, One-China policy, and Cross-strait relations.
- A microcontinent on continental crust.
- The northern part of the island of Cyprus is the de facto independent state of Northern Cyprus, which is recognized only by Turkey. In the south of the island are the Sovereign Base Areas of Akrotiri and Dhekelia, controlled by the United Kingdom.
- The largest oceanic island in the world.
- The western portion of the country is on the continental shelf of Asia while the eastern portion of the country is on the continental shelf of Australia. The central portion of the country consists of oceanic islands in Wallacea.
- In Japanese tradition, 11st of February in 660 B.C. is regarded as the accession date of the first Emperor of Japan in legendary, Emperor Jimmu, marking the establishment of Yamato Dynasty. However, no historical evidence that Jimmu actually existed and his story was largely narrated by Japanese mythology. February 11 was also the day when the Constitution of the Empire of Japan was proclaimed in 1889. See: National Foundation Day
- The largest microcontinent in the world.
- The Federated States of Micronesia, Marshall Islands, and Palau are in free association with the United States, under the Compact of Free Association.
- A part of the submerged continent of Zealandia.
- In 1983, Northern Cyprus declared independence from Cyprus. Northern Cyprus' sovereignty has been recognized by only one United Nations member state (Turkey). It is not a member state of the United Nations. Most states recognize Cyprus' claim to sovereignty over Northern Cyprus.
- The Granitic Seychelles is a part of the Seychelles microcontinent. The Coralline Seychelles consists of oceanic islands.
- The Republic of China (ROC) was formally established on 1 January 1912 following the Xinhai Revolution, which succeeded the former Qing dynasty's territories on mainland China, while the islands of Taiwan and Penghu were under Japanese rule at the time. The ROC gained control over the latter after the surrender of Japan in 1945, but soon lost its control of mainland to the communists due to the Chinese Civil War. The ROC government was relocated to Taipei in 7th December 1949 as its provisional capital. Constitutionally, the ROC on Taiwan still views itself as the continuation of former Chinese republic, with legitimate sovereignty over mainland China despite no actual control. 7th December 1949 is listed as the date of formation of its governing authority fully established on the islands. See: Political status of Taiwan, Retreat of the Republic of China to Taiwan and Four-Stage Theory of the Republic of China.
- The British overseas territory of Gibraltar is a peninsular exclave which shares a land border with Spain and can thus be regarded as a part of continental Europe, with the UK retaining the full authority for its defence and foreign relations. However, Gibraltar as well as other BOTs are considered as dependent territories of the British Crown with varying degrees of self-governance, not parts of the United Kingdom itself nor of any of its four constituent countries.
- Finland and Sweden share a border over the small island of Märket; however, the property including the lighthouse is owned by the Finnish rather than Åland government.
- An insular area of the US. See Territories of the United States.
- The Cook Islands and Niue are in free association with New Zealand. See Niue Constitution Act. Tokelau is a dependent territory of New Zealand.
- The Falkland Islands and South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands are also claimed by Argentina.
- The Bailiwicks of Guernsey and Jersey, and the Isle of Man are peculiars of the British Crown and not part of the United Kingdom; foreign relations and defence are provided by the UK.
- Administered by Norway under the Svalbard Treaty.
- Dissolved in 1962 and then divided into Anguilla, Antigua, Barbados, Barbuda, the Cayman Islands, Dominica, Grenada, Jamaica, Montserrat, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, and the Turks and Caicos Islands.
- By 1910, the Empire of Japan was restricted to the majority of the Japanese archipelago and Taiwan before its official annexation of Korea.
- Before the outbreak of Sicilian Vespers in 1282, the Kingdom of Sicily encompassed both the island of Sicily and south Italy; the war resulted the division of the kingdom into two parts as "Kingdom of Trinacria" (island part), and Kingdom of Naples (mainland part) which still officially called itself "Kingdom of Sicily". The two Sicilian kingdoms had since remained separate until 1816, when they remerged to form the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies.
- Under the Anglo-Irish Treaty, the Irish Free State included all of the island of Ireland but Northern Ireland exercised its option to leave the Irish Free State and rejoin the United Kingdom on 8 December 1922. Therefore, from 6 December 1922 to 8 December 1922, the Irish Free State was a borderless island country.
- The Crown Colony of Hong Kong covered only Hong Kong Island from 1841 to 1860. Kowloon, south of Boundary Street on the continent, was added in 1860, and extended to include the New Territories in 1898.
- The colony covered the island of Newfoundland before 1809. In 1809, part of the Labrador Peninsula was transferred to Newfoundland from Lower Canada. In other words, before 1809, Newfoundland was an island colony. From 1809 onwards, the Colony of Newfoundland and, since 1907, the Dominion of Newfoundland had been an island plus Labrador (an area on the continent of North America).
- "Definition of island". Oxford University Press.
- Löffler, Ernst; A.J. Rose, Anneliese Löffler & Denis Warner (1983). Australia:Portrait of a Continent. Richmond, Victoria: Hutchinson Group. p. 17. ISBN 0-09-130460-1.
- "Island Countries Of The World". WorldAtlas.com. Archived from the original on 2017-12-07. Retrieved 2019-08-10.
- "Total Population Estimates 2015-2019". data.worldbank.org. The World Bank. Retrieved 21 April 2021.
- "令和元年全国都道府県市区町村別面積調（１０月１日時点）2020年" (in Japanese). 国土地理院. 25 December 2020. Archived from the original on January 1, 2021. Retrieved 3 January 2021.
- TRNC SPO, Economic and Social Indicators 2014, pages=2–3
- "The Overseas Territories" (PDF). Foreign and Commonwealth Office. June 2012. Retrieved 29 November 2020.
- "Channel Islands". Archived from the original on 21 September 2012. Retrieved 22 August 2013.