Lagoons are typically an area of calm sea water that is separated from the ocean by a barrier of rock or sand, and if Instagram is anything to believe, make a very beautiful natural landscape for holiday photos. In new research by JW Marriott Venice Resort & Spa - a luxury resort on the private island of Isola delle Rose within the Venice lagoon, 14 of the world’s most stunning lagoons have been analysed to determine their popularity on the photo sharing app.
Most Instagrammable lagoons in the world
Blue Lagoon - Iceland
Jökulsárlón - Iceland
Lord Howe Island - Australia
Venice Lagoon - Italy
San Alfonso del Mar - Chile
Teti’aroa - French Polynesia
Aitutaki Lagoon - Cook Islands
Ko Olina - Hawaii
Comino - Malta
The New Caledonia Lagoon - New Caledonia
Chuuk Lagoon - Micronesia
Blue Lagoon - Croatia
Bora Bora - French Polynesia
The Coorong - Australia
In first place is Iceland’s iconic Blue Lagoon. WIth more than 107,000 photos tagged to this location on Instagram, the milky-blue geo-thermal spa is a must-visit (and obviously a must-gram) for anyone visiting Iceland. The lagoon, while man-made, is naturally heated by a local geo-thermal power station and is a comfortable 37-39 degrees celsius. In direct contrast to this is Jökulsárlón, number two on our list and another of Iceland’s incredible lagoons.
The name of this lagoon directly translates to “glacial river lagoon”, because it formed naturally as the the Breiðamerkurjökull glacier began to recede from the Atlantic Ocean. It is said that the lagoon presents as a “ghostly procession of luminous blue icebergs” for those driving on nearby roads, and has also featured in a number of Hollywood films. With more than 73,000 posts on Instagram, this is the most popular icy lagoon on our list.
We skip Down Under next, with Lord Howe Island taking position three. As a volcanic remnant, Lord Howe Island sits between Australia and New Zealand, but is officially part of the Australian state of New South Wales. Along the west coast is the stunning coral reef lagoon that draws tourists year-round, and has landed more than 43,000 posts on Instagram.
The first European lagoon appears at number four: Venice. While this watery city is built on a group of 118 islands separated by canals and connected by 400 bridges, the islands are actually sitting in a shallow lagoon that is connected to the Adriatic Sea by three inlets: Lido, Malamocco, and Chioggia. The Venice Lagoon is well known for its incredible Spring tides which can see the city flooded for a few days every year, but also for the impressive canal system that makes it so Instagrammable. More than 40,000 snaps of this lagoon on Instagram mean this lagoon is one of the most popular, and one of only three lagoons in Europe that make our list.
Rounding out the top five is our first South American lagoon, San Alfonso del Mar in Chile. This is another man-made lagoon, and it is also the current Guinness World Records holder for the biggest pool in the world, at 1,013m long. The water is pumped in from the adjacent Pacific Ocean then treated for commercial use. The lagoon is only accessible to guests of the private resort, of which there have been many as this lagoon has managed to accumulate more than 21,000 photos on Instagram - half that of the Lord Howe lagoon, and almost a fifth of the Blue Lagoon in Iceland, which are both accessible by the (paying) general public.
When we look at those same 14 lagoons and how often Brits are searching for them, we get a wildly different line up. While Bora Bora in French Polynesia only has little more than 1,100 photos attributed to it on Instagram, the idyllic island paradise has those back in the UK Googling it more than 135,000 times per month. In April of this year, searches for Bora Bora peaked at 165,000 - presumably as Covid-19 restrictions began to lift in the UK, the nation was looking for a real-time escape.
The second most-searched lagoon destination is Venice, with 60,500 searches per month. Venice is also the first destination to make the top five in both most Instagrammable, and most searched.
Again, searches for Venice peaked earlier in the year, when Brits upped their Google searches for the green-lit city to 90,500 times a month. With Italy still sitting comfortably on the green list of international destinations that travellers from the UK can visit with more ease than many others, and with so many incredible photo opportunities on offer, adding Venice to the “must-see” list is a no brainer.
Rounding out the top three is the Blue Lagoon in Iceland, the second destination to make both lists. Interest in the hydro-thermal spa peaked in March of this year, seeing 40,500 Brits Googling this lagoon; presumably off the back of the latest volcanic eruption that occurred in Iceland at this time.