U.S. Virgin Islands Back to Caribbean

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Courtesy of Caneel Bay

Four-hour flight, no time change, no passport, no foreign currency or language. And yet: gorgeous beaches, perfect weather, fabulous snorkeling and a wonderful sense of place. These are just a few of the reasons the U.S. Virgin Islands are a particularly beloved beach escape.

Cheat Sheet

  • Sleep…to the sound of the waves in an oceanfront room at Caneel Bay
  • Experience…the world-class snorkeling at Buck Island, off of St. Croix
  • Splurge…on a Luxury Beachside Doubloon at the Buccaneer
  • Eat….creative dishes at the romantic Asolare while the harbor lights twinkle below you
  • Drink….mojitos at the sexy, knockout Havana Blue, on St. Thomas
  • Savor….a full-moon cruise on the Ritz-Carlton St. Thomas’s 53-foot catamaran
  • Visit….Coral World, on St. Thomas, for a swim with the sea lions
  • See….the evocative stone ruins of a 16th-century sugar plantation
  • Know…that as an Indagare member you can contact our Bookings Team for customized recommendations and itineraries

Lay of the Land

Numerous airlines fly into St. Thomas International airport (STT), making it the arrival hub for the USVI, as well as a gateway to the British Virgin Islands. St. John, the most scenic of the islands (more than half of the island is protected National Park) is only accessible by boat. A ferry service runs between Charlotte Amalie, on St. Thomas, and Cruz Bay, on St. John. The trip takes 45 minutes; ferries leave about every two hours. For a schedule, visit: st-thomas.com/ferries. If you are staying at Caneel Bay, however, the resort will arrange for an airport transfer on its private boat.

St. Croix is the largest of the USVI, but it’s also one of the least visited. Because there is an oil refinery on the island, tourism was never their big industry, the way it was on St. Thomas. Their airport, St. Croix International airport (STX), is served by a variety of carriers, notably American Airlines and JetBlue. Seabourn Airlines also offers regular seaplane service between St. Thomas (Charlotte Amalie) and St. Croix (Christiansted) during daylight hours. Flights leave twice an hour and take about twenty-five minutes. Be aware that seaplanes have strict weight restrictions; you will be charged extra for heavy bags. If you have noise canceling headphones, bring them along, as seaplanes are quite loud. There is also a ferry that runs between St. Thomas and St. Croix, but service is very infrequent and the ride can be quite rough, so it is not recommended.

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