Saint John (Virgin Islands)

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Saint John (Virgin Islands)

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Saint John is the smallest, but many say the prettiest of the Virgin Islands because of its world-class beaches. Two-thirds of Saint John is Virgin Islands National Park.

Understand

The main community on the island is Cruz Bay, located on the western side of the island.

Get in

By plane

Fly into Saint Thomas' Cyril E King Airport (IATA: STT), and take a taxi to the nearest ferry service (see below).

By boat

Hourly ferry service from Red Hook, Saint Thomas (a 20-minute ride) is available to Cruz Bay, St. John and operates from 6:30AM, then hourly from 7AM - midnight. Ferry service from St. John to St. Thomas runs on the hour from 6AM-11PM. Less frequent ferries travel between Charlotte Amalie, Saint Thomas and Cruz Bay, St. John (a 45-minute ride). Ferries also run to and from Virgin Gorda, Jost Van Dyke, and Anegada (in the British Virgin Islands).

Get around

Renting a car is the best way to see all the beaches and other sites. However, be aware that the terrain is extremely hilly, and you have to drive on the left. If you rent a car, it's a good idea to request a Jeep or other four-wheel-drive vehicle. Cab service is affordable and plentiful, especially to the north shore beaches.

See

Do

  • Take a tour by jeep and boat around the island or sit on the white sandy beaches.
  • Take a taxi or rent a car. Drive around the island and stop at the beaches and spend all day snorkeling.
  • Miles of hiking trails criss-cross the entire island. Maps are available from the U.S. Park Service office in Cruz Bay. Ranger guided hikes can also be scheduled for a small fee at the same office.

Learn

The surrounding woods and brush areas are often populated with native wildlife. It is not uncommon to see a donkey, chickens, goats or mongoose.

Work

Buy

  • St. John Bracelet Company, family-owned-and-operated store that sells handmade Caribbean jewelry for men and women,

340-776-6465, [1]

Eat

St. John has more than 35 places to dine, ranging from chic and expensive restaurants to funky beachside food stands. After dark the island comes alive with hotel and villa guests seeking out one of the island's cozy and romantic restaurants.

Budget

Mid-range

Splurge

Drink

  • Woody's Seafood Saloon, [2]. Woody's happy hour is daily, 3PM-6PM. Happy hour is nearing when you hear music from The Blues Brothers, and ends when the theme song from the TV show Rawhide is finished playing.
  • The Tap Room - St. John Brewers, [3]. St. John's first and only brewpub serves locally created draft beer including their own Virgin Islands Pale Ale and Island Summer. A cool place to meet locals in an air conditioned bar or outdoor patio. Located at Mongoose Junction.

Lizard's Landing. Located downtown it's where all the locals party. You can most certainly score something upstairs. Ask the guy servin you food if they are serving any, or any of the friendly locals.

Sleep

Budget

Mid-range

  • Estate Lindholm, 340-776-6121, [4]. An intimate bed and breakfast inn set amongst Danish ruins.
  • Hillcrest Guest House, (340) 776-6774 or (340) 998-8388, [5]. "Perfect place to feel human again" Ocean views all around and free Wi-Fi available for guest. Established in 1966 by the Hall Family.

Splurge

  • Caneel Bay, PO Box 720, Tel (340) 776-6111, [6]. A luxury beach resort in the Caribbean located within the Virgin Islands National Park. Caneel Bay offers meeting and wedding facilities, seven secluded beaches, family and honeymoon vacation packages, and meditation retreats.

Contact

Stay safe

Crime is not a major problem in St. John. You will find residential villas and locals are very friendly. The usual common-sense precautions are advised, such as locking your doors, not displaying large amounts of cash, jewelery, or cameras (especially at Waterlemon Cay on the North Side of the island) Never use your car as a safe place for your wallet while at the beach. Otherwise, your stay on St. John should be worry-free.

If you act cool you can always score something sweet from the right locals. remember to ask ya alright?

Cope

Everything is expensive because everything has to come in on boats from the bigger islands (which have much more capacity for cargo).

Get out

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