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What are the World’s Most Populated Islands?

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See this visualization first on the Voronoi app.

A chart ranking the 25 most populated islands on Earth, along with their area to scale.

What are the World’s Most Populated Islands?

This was originally posted on our Voronoi app. Download the app for free on iOS or Android and discover incredible data-driven charts from a variety of trusted sources.

The word “island” tends to bring up images of remote paradise—a brisk sea breeze, waving palms, and inviting beaches, all ingredients for an idyllic life.

However, they can also be hubs for human activity, home to 730 million people, or about 9% of the world’s population.

This chart, by creator Perrin Remonté, ranks the 25 most populated islands in the world, colored by their population density patterns, along with an overview of their size relative to each other. Data for this graphic comes from a variety of sources listed at the end of this article.

Ranked: Top 25 Islands by Population

At the top of the list sits Java, Indonesia’s most populous island and the most populous island on Earth. Over 150 million residents inhabit the 130,000 km² landmass, resulting in a density of nearly 1,200 people/km².

Its capital, Jakarta—also the capital of Indonesia—is a vibrant metropolis teeming with skyscrapers, bustling streets, and a rich tapestry of traditions.

Even historically, the island has been the political and economic center of the region: the seat of empires and also the heart of the Indonesian independence movement.

RankIslandPopulationAreaAverage Density
1🇮🇩 Java, Indonesia153M130K km21,177/km2
2🇯🇵 Honshu, Japan103M228K km2452/km2
3🇬🇧 Great Britain, UK67M209K km2321/km2
4🇵🇭 Luzon, Philippines64M105K km2480/km2
5🇮🇩 Sumatra, Indonesia59M443K km2133/km2
6🇲🇬 Madagascar30M592K km251/km2
7🇵🇭 Mindanao,
Philippines
27M95K km2284/km2
8🇹🇼 Taiwan24M36K km2666/km2
9🇮🇳 Salsette, India
(Mumbai)
24M619 km238,772/km2
10🇮🇩 🇲🇾 🇧🇳 Borneo,
Indonesia, Malaysia,
Brunei
24M751K km232/km2
11🇭🇹🇩🇴 Hispaniola,
Haiti & Dominican
Republic
22M76K km2289/km2
12🇱🇰 Sri Lanka22M66K km2333/km2
13🇮🇩 Sulawesi, Indonesia20M181K km2110/km2
14🇮🇩🇵🇬 New Guinea,
Indonesia & Papua
New Guinea
15M821K km218/km2
15🇯🇵 Kyushu, Japan12M37K km2324/km2
16🇨🇺 Cuba11M105K km2105/km2
17🇨🇳 Hainan, China10M34K km2294/km2
18🇺🇸 Long Island, U.S.8M4K km22,000/km2
19🇮🇪 🇬🇧 Ireland,
Ireland & UK
7M84K km283/km2
20🇸🇬 Singapore Island,
Singapore
6M704 km28,523/km2
21🇯🇵 Hokkaido, Japan5M78K km264/km2
22🇮🇹 Sicily, Italy5M26K km2192/km2
23🇵🇭 Negros, Philippines5M13K km2385/km2
24🇵🇭 Panay, Philippines5M12K km2417/km2
25🇮🇩 Bali, Indonesia4M6K km2667/km2

Note: Numbers are rounded. Area source: Encyclopaedia Britannica. Population source: See bottom of the article.

Meanwhile, Japan’s Honshu Island ranks second, home to approximately 103 million people. Honshu is the largest and most populous island in Japan, housing iconic cities like Osaka, Kyoto, and Tokyo—the country’s capital, the world’s largest urban area, and one of the three biggest financial centers in Asia.

At third place, Great Britain, the largest of the British Isles, boasts of around 67 million residents, of which England alone accounts for 83% of the population.

Back in Southeast Asia, the island of Luzon, with 64 million people, is home to more than half of the Philippines’ total population.

Coming back to Indonesia, parts of Sumatra, population 59 million, are more along the lines of a postcard picture, from the lush rainforests of Bukit Lawang to the pristine shores of Lake Toba.

In total, Indonesia has six islands on this graphic, with tourist favorite Bali—consistently one of the most popular places to visit—coming in at the 25th spot.

Missing from this list is Australia, home to nearly 30 million people, which would make the top five on this list, were it not for the continent-island debate.

Most Densely Populated Islands

For Salsette Island (ranked 9th by population)—administratively known as Greater Mumbai —magnification is required as it appears as a dot on the scale for the other most populated islands in the world.

Consequently it’s one of the most densely populated islands in the world; at more than 30,000 people/km².

Singapore (ranked 20th), is similarly dense, though not quite at the scale as Mumbai: 8,500 people/km².

Other extremely populated and dense islands in the world include: Manhattan, Haizhu, Guangzhou, and Lagos Island, but none with the total population close to Singapore or Mumbai.

Where Does This Data Come From?

Population sources:

Creator Note: For Great Britain and the Indonesian islands, the population figures are reverse engineered from the total population of the country and the percentage share of each island, available on Statista.

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This article was published as a part of Visual Capitalist's Creator Program, which features data-driven visuals from some of our favorite Creators around the world.

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Misc

Airline Incidents: How Do Boeing and Airbus Compare?

This graphic shows U.S. airline incidents across the two largest aircraft manufacturers in the world as Boeing faces increased scrutiny.

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This area chart shows airline incidents across Boeing and Airbus since 2014.

Airline Incidents: How Do Boeing and Airbus Compare?

This was originally posted on our Voronoi app. Download the app for free on iOS or Android and discover incredible data-driven charts from a variety of trusted sources.

For decades, the global airline manufacturing industry has been run by a duopoly, split between American titan Boeing and European manufacturer Airbus.

After years of safety issues, the American aircraft manufacturer has come under fire after a door flew off a Boeing 737 MAX 9 on an Alaska Air flight in January, which recently led its CEO to resign. This incident follows two fatal crashes of its aircraft in 2018 and 2019.

This graphic compares the number of U.S. aviation incidents between Boeing and Airbus, based on data from the National Transportation Safety Board.

A Closer Look at Airline Incidents

The U.S. stands as Boeing’s largest market, comprising 58% of annual revenues in 2023.

By contrast, North America was Airbus’s third-biggest market, making up 21% of annual revenues, following Europe and Asia. Below, we show the number of aviation incidents between the two giants since 2014 in the U.S. and international waters:

YearBoeing IncidentsAirbus Incidents
2024204
202313740
202211132
20219924
20205822
20198637
201811225
201710824
201610222
20157121
20146613

*Data for 2024 up to the end of February.

So far this year, Boeing has faced 20 incidents, with the Alaska Air flight as the most high-profile case due to missing bolts in the emergency door causing it to fly off the hinge.

One potential driver that has been identified by the company is that employee bonuses have been heavily tied to financial incentives. Prior to the incident, they accounted for 75% of annual bonuses in its commercial unit, with the remainder tied to operational targets that included safety and quality measures. Now, as the company overhauls its production process, the company is making safety and quality metrics 60% of the annual reward.

For many years, Boeing has faced safety concerns with its aircraft, leading regulators to ground its 737 MAX 8 planes for two years after a fatal crash in 2019. Making matters worse, aircraft regulators have faced sharp budget cuts since 2013, allowing manufacturers to “self-certify” their planes on safety requirements.

Yet quality issues are not exclusive to Boeing. In some of the latest deliveries for Airbus, customers have raised quality concerns along with complaints of delays. In January, for instance, an Airbus A319 plane on a United Airlines flight made an emergency landing due to a potential faulty door.

Leading up to this point, incidents for both Boeing and Airbus hit decade-highs in 2023 amid a record 16.3 million flights in America. The good news is that there were no reported fatal accidents across passenger jet aircraft in 2023. In fact, there have been no fatal crashes across U.S. airlines in almost 15 years.

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