St. John

Virgin Islands National Park, renowned throughout the world for its breathtaking beauty, covers approximately 3/5 of St. John, and nearly all of Hassel Island in Charolette Amalie harbor on St. Thomas. Within its borders lie protected bays of crystal blue-green waters teeming with coral reef life, white sandy beaches shaded by seagrape trees and coconut palms, and tropical forests providing habitat for over 800 species of plants. To these amazing natural resources, add relics from the pre-Colombian Amerindian civilization, remains of the Danish colonial sugar plantations, and reminders of African slavery and the subsistence culture that followed during the 100 years after emancipation- all part of the rich cultural history of the Park and its island home.

t. John, the smaller of the three U.S. Virgin Islands, has two main towns seperated by a mountainous interior. To the west and main entry point to the island is Cruise Bay. You can get there by ferry from the largest of the islands, St. Thomas.

Cruise Bay is home to most of the island’s restaurants and resorts. Be sure to check out the great BBQ at Smok’n Joe’s! You can get your car rental there but remember to drive on the left side of the street!

Taking just about any street out of Cruise Bay will eventually land you in Coral Bay, on the other side of the mountain. Be cautious when driving across the island as the roads are narrow, the cliffs are steep and the chickens, cows and donkeys run wild. You may find that the locals zip down these roads, but it’s dangerous.

Coral Bay is a smaller town that is much lest touristy. It has a small diner that’s great for breakfast (Donkey Diner) and small shops along the coast. If there for snorkeling, be sure to visit Salt Pond and Water Lemon as they offer some of the best underwater views. If new to snorkling and want to warm yourself up first, be sure to head to Trunk Bay as it’s great for a first timer. Coral Bay is also home to a lot of great villa’s with great views. Be sure to check prices as they are fairly affordable.