British artist Richie Sowa has built two artificial floating islands

June 19, 2013 in Amazing, Crazy and bizarre, North America


What would you do if you really wanted your own private island, but couldn’t afford one? Richie Sowa from Britain really wanted an island and decided to take matters in his own hands, so to speak.

Spiral Island Richie Sowa

(Photo: RandyMac McCallum)

In 1998, using more than 250,000 plastic bottles, he built the Spiral Island in a lagoon on the Caribbean coast of Cancun, Mexico. Richie filled nets with empty plastic bottles, put them under a deck of  bamboo and plywood and topped it with sand, plants and a two-story house. He also installed other amenities such as a self-composting toilet, a solar oven and three small beaches. The size of the Island was as much as 66 by 54 feet until it was destoyed in Hurricane Emily in 2005.

Hurricane Emily left the Spiral Island in such a condition, that is wasn’t able to be saved. But that didn’t stop Richie from his dream of living his own island. During 2007 and 2008 he constructed a new island, named Joyxee Island, also near Cancun, Mexico. The new island has a roundish shape and measures more than 82 feet in diameter. His new island has three beaches, two ponds, a house and even a small waterfall and river.

Since 2008 it has been possible to visit the island as a tourist. (Source: