Virgin Islands

I have been fascinated with the Virgin Islands since I was a child. We kept postponing a trip there because we knew it would be more expensive than our usual trips and ultimately decided it wasn’t going to get any cheaper! We ended up visiting the spring following hurricanes Irma and Maria so keep that in mind as you read about our trip. Many places were closed or damaged and many schedules disrupted. We still had a wonderful time and found the islands relaxed and beautiful. And we have never had so many people thank us for being on vacation!

Food and Beverage $68 per day

Average per person per day, not including any meals furnished as part of a tour. We ate all meals out except breakfast.

Lodging $117-$223 per night

We typically try to keep lodging to less than $100 per night if we can. That was not possible in the Virgin Islands while still having a private bath.

Transportation $617 per person

Includes our flight from St Croix to St Thomas, ferries, taxis, and rental cars for 10 days.

Entertainment $108 per person

Big Beard's snorkeling trip to Buck Island and entrance to The Baths on Virgin Gorda.

Days 1-3: St Croix, US Virgin Islands

Planned Activities

  • Buck Island snorkeling
  • Christiansted
  • St George village
  • Cruzan Rum distillery

Actual Activities

  • Buck Island snorkeling
  • Sandy Point Wildlife Refuge

The Plan: The key draw was snorkeling at Buck Island. We also thought we’d briefly check out the island to see if we wanted to return and spend more time.

The Reality: We did go to Buck Island and it was good snorkeling. St Croix was not what I expected. More rural, less scenic. But we were there post hurricane so it’s hard to tell.    

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Fly from home

Stay at Sand Castle on the Beach

A lovely hotel and cafe in a quiet area on a sandy beach.

Get around by rental car

We rented from Centerline Car Rentals, a great local company with locations at the airport and in Christiansted.

Days 4-9: St John, US Virgin Islands

Planned Activities

  • Hiking
  • Snorkeling from a beach

Actual Activities

  • Hiking Lind Point
  • Hiking Ram Head
  • Snorkeling at Trunk Bay
  • Volunteering at the national park

The Plan: I’ve been fascinated by St John for years. We almost went there on our honeymoon. We knew our focus would be on the national park beaches and hikes. 

The Reality: It was everything we hoped for. I don’t know what it’s like when the big swanky resorts are open, but it was very relaxed and low key. 

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Fly from St Croix to St Thomas

Via Seaborne seaplane

Ferry from St Thomas to St John

Via taxi to Red Hook, then regular St John ferry

Stay at Hawks Rest

A great Airbnb on the south coast with million-dollar views and a great host.

Get around by rental car

We rented from our host and it worked great.

Days 10-13: Virgin Gorda, British Virgin Islands

Planned Activities

  • The Baths
  • Hiking Gorda Peak
  • Touring the island by car

Actual Activities

  • The Baths
  • Hiking Gorda Peak
  • Touring the island by car

The Plan: We went to Virgin Gorda for the Baths, and to hike Gorda Peak. 

The Reality: The Baths alone were worth the trip. Hiking the peak was anticlimactic without the views from the top.  

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Ferry from St John to Virgin Gorda

We'd planned to take a direct ferry but it wasn't running due to hurricanes so we had to go via St Thomas and Tortola. It was more complicated but it works!

Stay at Fischer's Cove Beach Hotel

Conveniently located near Spanish Town and walking distance to The Baths.

Get around by rental car

We rented from Mahogany Car Rentals, who kindly dropped the vehicle off and picked it up from our hotel.

Days 14-16: Jost Van Dyke, British Virgin Islands

Planned Activities

  • Hanging out at White Bay

Actual Activities

  • Hanging out at White Bay
  • Helping our host with repairs

The Plan: We went to hang out at White Bay in particular, and at a tiny laid back island in general.

The Reality: Check and check. Just an utterly relaxing and unfussed place to be. There isn’t a whole lot to do, but we didn’t want a whole lot to do! 

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Ferry from Virgin Gorda to Jost Van Dyke

The ferry from Virgin Gorda lands at Road Town. The Jost Van Dyke ferry leaves from West End, so we took a taxi between the two.

Stay at Ali Baba's

Ali Baba's has three pleasant en suite rooms at a reasonable rate on an island with not many options. We loved it.

Get around by taxi

After walking to White Bay once, we took a taxi to and from!

Days 17-18: St Thomas, US Virgin Islands

Planned Activities

  • Spending the day at the beach

Actual Activities

  • Spending the day at the beach

The Plan: We only went there because we flew home from there and didn’t want complicated connections the day we flew.

The Reality: Easiest trip to the airport ever: just walk around the corner. And it was a pleasant place to spend a day or two. 

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Ferry from Jost Van Dyke to St Thomas

We'd planned to take a direct ferry but it wasn't running due to hurricane damage, so we went via Tortola.

Stay at Lindbergh Bay Hotel and Villas

We booked a hotel room and they upgraded us to a villa for free. A five-minute walk to the airport!

Resources

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