Welcome to US Virgin Islands
Looking for a Caribbean destination that offers the perfect blend of natural beauty, adventure, and relaxation? Look no further than the U.S. Virgin Islands! Comprised of three unique islands – St. Thomas, St. Croix, and St. John – each offers its own charm and attractions. St. Thomas boasts world-class shopping and dining, while St. Croix is known for its rich cultural history and stunning beaches. St. John is perfect for outdoor adventurers, with two-thirds of the island preserved as a national park. Our guide will take you through some of the top things to do in USVI. We will also give you tips on when to visit the U.S. Virgin Islands, the weather to expect, and how to stay safe during your travels. So pack your bags and get ready to immerse yourself in the local culture of this breathtaking island nation!
US Virgin Islands Map
Take the Skyride to Paradise Point
This short gondola ride will take you up to the highest peak in the islands’ capital city, Charlotte Amalie. From this vantage point, you will experience panoramic views that overlook Water Island and Puerto Rico in the distance. There is also a restaurant, bar, and gift shop at the top! This ride is around $25 for adults and $17 for children 12 and under.
Go Diving or Snorkeling
It is no secret that the U.S. Virgin Islands has some of the best diving and snorkeling in the Caribbean. You can observe various coral types, sea turtles, an array of colorful fish, and so much more! Not surprisingly, there are an abundance of beaches with great DIY snorkeling opportunities. However, boat snorkeling and diving tours tend to explore much more of the beautiful reefs.
Check out a number of excellent snorkeling day tours in St. Thomas here.
Visit the Phantasea Tropical Botanical Garden
For the nature and flower-loving tourist, the Phantasea Tropical Botanical Garden offers beautiful blooming orchids, lilies, palms, and so much more! A stroll through the gardens can be relaxing for the whole family.
With lizards scurrying about and butterflies floating gracefully by, this experience is sure to leave you feeling enchanted and mesmerized. There are also several animal attractions, such as parrots, peacocks, tortoises, and chickens.
For those without transportation, this inexpensive 2 hour tour to the gardens includes hotel pick up and drop off.
Spend the Day as a Pirate
The Virgin Islands are famously known to have been a safe harbor for pirates back in the day. Today, you can spend the day as a pirate and visit many historical pirate sites, such as Blackbeard’s Castle. This tower was originally created in 1679 as a watchtower for the Danes but was taken over in the 18th century by pirate Blackbeard.
Near Blackbeard’s Castle, you will find the famous 99 steps. These were originally built by the Danes to make it easier to climb the steep hillsides and is a popular location for a photo-op today. End your day in a natural pirate fashion by sipping one of the plentiful rum drinks at any of the local restaurants.
Visit Blackbeard and Bluebeard’s castles as part of this half day group tour.
Want to try something really different? Check out this popular night time pirate treasure hunt!
Relax on the Beach
One of the best activities on any island is relaxing on its beaches, and St. Thomas has one of the best! On the northern coast of the island is Magens Bay (pictured above), known to be one of the most photogenic and swimmable locations in the Caribbean.
Visitors love the snow white sand and crystal clear water. You can check this beach out on your own, or you can join one of a variety of tours that visit Magens Bay by land or boat!
Check out a number of great Magens Bay tour options here.
For more great beach ideas, check out our Best Beaches In U.S. Virgin Islands Guide!
Explore Virgin Islands National Park
The Virgin Islands National Park comprises two-thirds of the island of St. John. Nature-lovers will enjoy exploring more than 20 trails, relaxing on the various beaches, or adventuring into the waters for boating and snorkeling excursions.
Discover the Bays
St. John is home to several bays with gorgeous panoramic views that shouldn’t be missed. Trunk Bay (pictured above), nearby the Virgin Islands National Park, has fluffy white sand beaches and mesmerizing turquoise water.
There is also a 225-yard snorkeling path that is abundant with coral and fish. On the East End of St. John lies Hansen Bay, which offers serene waters and great snorkeling with glimpses of turtles and stingrays.
In the north is Maho Bay, which is a favorite among locals and tourists alike. It offers glittering white sands shaded by towering coconut trees. Cruz Bay, on the west coast, is one of St. John’s most lively ports with 28 miles of restaurants, stores, and bars.
Lastly, Salt Pond Bay in the South, is a moderate hike from the road, which brings you out to a protected cove that offers a more private beach experience and pristine snorkeling.
This top rated 4 hour private tour in an open air tour taxi visits Trunk Bay, Maho Bay and Cinnamon Bay as well as 4 other beaches.
This popular small group boat tour visits Cinnamon Bay, Hansens Bay and Salt Pond Bay.
Hire a private boat to see all the bays you want in a customizable tour!
Go Hiking or Kayaking
With two-thirds of the island being a national park, there are numerous kayaking locations and jungle hikes in St. John. Easy hiking trails include Drunk Bay and Lind Point, while slightly more advanced trails are Cinnamon Bay (pictured above), Reef Bay, Johnny Horn, and Bordeaux Mountain Trail.
No matter which bay or trail you choose, you are sure to see beautiful greenery, breathtaking views, and maybe even some wildlife.
Get active with this kayaking/snorkeling/hiking combo tour.
Night kayaking is also very popular.
Take a Sunset Sail
Sunsets are the perfect time to set sail off the coast of St. John. Numerous sunset sails offer food, champagne and an experience not to be missed. While some sunset tours set out for an hour and a half and include champagne and hors d’oeuvres, other lengthier experiences include a stop on Lovango Cay where guests can have dinner at the private resort before sailing back to the mainland under the moonlight.
This 1.5 hour sunset tour includes champagne, hors d’oeuvres and an open bar.
This 4.5 hour experience includes champagne, hors d’oeuvres and an open bar on the sailboat and several hours on the beautiful Lovango Cay for dinner. Note that dinner is not included.
Salt River Bay National Park and Ecological Preserve
This national park preserves watersheds, forests, and marine environments that are home to many endangered species. There are also many prehistoric and colonial-era archeological sites, such as the Columbus landing site.
Visit Buck Island
This island is about one and half miles off the coast of St. Croix. It is about nearly 200 acres of land surrounded by over 700 acres of a coral reef system. This island is a heaven for snorkelers, divers, and jungle adventurers!
Caribbean Museum Center for the Arts
For art-lovers or those wanting to escape the sun for a bit, the Caribbean Museum Center for the Arts is a great place to visit. There is an ongoing home exhibit, as well as visiting exhibits that rotate throughout the year. Check out their website for the newest exhibitions.