Every Terraria world holds several floating islands that can contain game-changing loot for early-game players. Getting to them should be one of your first priorities, especially for the Lucky Horseshoe accessory.
The best way to find Floating Islands in Terraria is with Gravitation Potions. There are other ways to find them, but they take longer and require some setup.
The problem is, it’s very hard for new characters actually to get up to the islands in the first place. Over our years of Terraria experience, we found many ways to get up to these islands.
9. Sky Bridge
Although this is the most tedious way on the list, it works. To do this method, all you have to do is tower up extremely high (a little ways below outer space), then create a bridge in your chosen direction.
However, this can take an extremely long time and be very dangerous. If you decide to find them like this, Extendo Grip and Brick Layer are extremely helpful for placing blocks at a faster pace.
New players won’t often resort to this method because it requires mining a lot of blocks with a very slow pickaxe, so unless you have a lot of blocks and time to spare, you should try out some of the better methods below.
When you find a floating island, you’ll likely have to tower up to it anyway, so why not build many towers to locate them? The best way to do this is to collect a ton of sand and then simply build towers wherever you think there might be an island. Sand can be collected easily with a pickaxe and even easier with explosives.
The tower method is best paired with an item like a Magic Carpet, allowing you to travel in both directions to check for them. Once you’ve uncovered the map in both directions, break your sand tower and move to the edge of where you last explored. Another benefit of using sand is that you can sit at the bottom and mine the entire tower.
Be careful, though, as once your Magic Carpet runs out of steam, you’ll fall to the ground and die unless you have another accessory like a Cloud in a Bottle. Out of all the methods on this list, this is the only way to find an island as soon as you spawn.
Wings are great, but you can’t get them before hardmode. The closest thing you can get to wings is the rocket boots, which barely get you off the ground. By the time you can even craft wings, you’ve probably made it to the floating islands, so this isn’t a good method for new characters.
If you want to find more islands, this is a great way to find more after beating the Wall of Flesh. The glide ability of the wings allows you to easily map out most of the black areas of the world, so it’s the best way to find any floating islands you might have missed.
Developer wings (which have a 5% chance of dropping from a Hardmode boss in an Expert world) are amazing for this, too, so you’ll have no trouble locating more if you are lucky enough to get a pair of those.
6. Bee Mount
Depending on what size world you’re on, the Honeyed Goggled can be the answer to all your floating island problems. In small and medium worlds, the bee mount will most likely have enough range to at least see the bottom of them. Large worlds are so big that most islands won’t even be in visibility range of the bee mount, which I noticed in a recent playthrough.
However, using the bee mount to fly from a tower or another floating island can quickly help you find another island. Some islands spawn right next to each other, so there’s a chance you’ll get lucky and fly right onto another one.
Be sure to let the bee mount rest for 3 seconds after each flight, or it’ll be too tired to make it to it’s full height. Large trees and tall hills are also great areas to take off from, so use the terrain to your advantage.
5. Water Bolt
The Water Bolt is one of the best pre-hardmode weapons, so you should definitely go get one even if you aren’t looking for an island. They can be found in the dungeon by breaking a gold and blue book on the bookshelves.
Water Bolts projectiles will bounce off any surface, which is perfect for locating islands. Simply walk (not run) in one direction and fire the Water Bolt straight into the air. The slow-moving projectile will bounce off the island and come back down, which you can easily see if you’re moving slowly.
I didn’t put this higher on the list because the bolt moves very slowly, so it can take a long time to find one. This method will work 100% of the time if you’re patient, so you’ll easily find an island if you take a little time.
4. Space Gun
If you have good ears, this method can work well for you. Once you’ve had a meteor land in your world, create a Space Gun and a set of Meteor Armor. This will give you unlimited lasers for the gun, which helps.
Next, quickly run in one direction while firing the Space Gun at a 45-degree angle. Eventually, you’ll hear the impact of the laters hitting a hard surface, which means you’ve found an island. Here’s the sound it’ll make upon impact:
This is made much easier by temporarily turning the music off. The impact sounds are further away, so turning the music off allows you to better listen for the sound effect.
While this is potentially the best method on the list, it requires creating a new character, which many players often see as cheating. To do this, you must first create a character on Hardcore Difficulty.
Hardcore characters will become a ghost upon death and will be completely deleted once the ghost player leaves the world. However, you can fly around with the ghost for an unlimited time.
If you don’t mind character hopping, you can fly around worldwide and discover many interesting things. This method is too close to cheating, but I have done it once or twice.
2. Meteor Shot
The Meteor Shot Method is sometimes the best way, depending on how far along you are. If you managed to break a Shadow Orb / Crimson Heart to summon a meteorite, you have all you need to find the rest of the islands.
Mine the meteor, craft Meteor Bars, then turn the bars into Meteor Shot. Earlier, I said the Space Gun is a viable option too, but this is much easier and takes less time.
Load the Meteor Shot into your gun of choice, aim at the sky, and fire away. Eventually, you’ll see the bullets bouncing back toward you. The cheapest way to do this is to buy the Flintlock Pistol from the Arms Dealer, but I’ve done this with a gun as slow as the Musket. A Boomstick will work, too, even though it’s less accurate.
The fastest (and most expensive) way to use the Meteor Shot method is to load it into a Minishark. You’ll find islands insanely fast, although it’ll eat up your bullets and cost 35 to purchase in the first place. If you don’t want to spend the gold, the Flintlock Pistol is the next best choice.
1. Gravitation Potions
The number one way to find floating islands at any point in the game is to use Gravitation Potions. I’ve used every other method on this list at some point, but nothing beats the speed and ease of flying around the map by flipping gravity.
However, these potions are dropped randomly and are somewhat difficult to craft early game. If you find even one Grav Potion, you have a guaranteed island. Finding one in a cave minutes after spawning for the first time is possible, so it all depends on luck.
Sometimes you’ll search for hours and never find one; in that case, refer to one of the previous methods. However, try to find a Grav Potion because it’s the best way.