Below are just a few highlights for what could be
your vacation in these beautiful islands.
Flag of the United States Virgin Islands
St Thomas USVI: You might choose St Thomas’ Cyril E. King airport (STT). View the airport’s location and history here.
- No customs or immigration is required for US Citizens.
- If your charter is scheduled to begin from St Thomas, it is a short taxi ride to the East End of St Thomas to meet your yacht at the large marina there.
- If your charter is scheduled to begin from Tortola, BVI (many charters start from there) you can catch one of the frequent fast ferries over to either the West End or Roadtown, BVI ferry terminals there. Ferries run usually up until 430PM daily, but you must check the current schedule when close to your charter departure date. Slip Aweigh Charters will help you coordinate the transfer. Holidays, Weekends, Off Season days will often affect the schedule for these ferries.
Planning where and how you will go is almost as much fun as actually being aboard! Well, maybe not quite as much. Many of our clients are “first-timers”, soon to be “second and third-timers”. We’d like to introduce you to the Virgin Islands so you can explore some of the fascinating places you will see, if you choose to, on your charter in the beautiful waters of the Virgin Islands. But remember: This is only a sampler. The beauty of a private yacht charter is the ability to change everything from day to day. No schedules, no fixed route.
Flag of the British Virgin Islands
Tortola, BVI: If you choose to fly into Tortola’s Beef Island Airport (EIS) instead, view the link here, you will enter into the BVI through customs and immigration at the airport. Please note: No jets fly into Beef Island, only prop-planes. You likely will fly into San Juan, PR (SJU) to connect with one of the local feeder airlines such as Cape Air, American Eagle or Liat, among others. Private air charter transfers can also be arranged. Starting from Tortola allows you to begin your trip further into the waters of the BVI. The beautiful “drowned island” of Anegada then becomes more easily reached. (More about this magical place later)
Special Note: The British Virgin Islands only accepts US currency.
Tortola, BVI: If you choose to fly into Tortola’s Beef Island Airport (EIS) instead, view the link here, you will enter into the BVI through customs and immigration at the airport. Please note: No jets fly into Beef Island, only prop-planes. That might be changing at the end of 2017, into 2018 as BVI Airways cranks up.
You likely will fly into San Juan, PR (SJU) to connect with one of the local feeder airlines such as Cape Air, American Eagle or Liat, among others. Private air charter transfers can also be arranged. Starting from Tortola allows you to begin your trip further into the waters of the BVI. The beautiful “drowned island” of Anegada then becomes more easily reached. (More about this magical place later)
Special Note: The British Virgin Islands only accepts US currency.
Slip Aweigh Charters is here to help you plan the most convenient and trouble-free way to arrive to meet your chosen yacht. Contact us now to start this adventure
Some things to see and do on your British Virgin Islands’ Cruise
Please understand, this is not a cruise ship itinerary where you have no freedom to choose. This is a personalized, customized cruise where you get to make daily changes on where you go and what you do. Basically, you’re in charge of all the fun!!
(Please note: This is a sample itinerary only. There are so many places and things to see and do. Discuss your plan on your first day of charter. However, remember, your professional captain will determine whether weather and/or sea conditions are right for your preferred plan. The focus is on your comfort and safety as well as your total enjoyment.)
Startings from Tortola, British Virgin Islands (BVI)
Day 1 – From Road Town or West End, Tortola to the Bight, Norman Island
Either arrival location from STT offers easy access to The Bight for the night at Norman Island BVI. There you will find the “Indians” and the Treasure Caves. Both offer exquisite snorkeling and diving opportunities. But that’s not all. Here in this cove and on this island made famous by Robert Louis Stevenson’s book, “Treasure Island” now reside modern day pirates. You will find them at Pirate’s Bight Restaurant. Ye’ll know when happy hour begins as they sound a cannon from the beach when it’s time.
Kids will LOVE this beach for exploring and digging and building sand castles or Pirate’s Lairs. Here you’ll revel in the Pirate lore and dine, if you wish, on local roti (spicy curry wrapped meat and vegetables) and sunset cocktails. Enjoy the sunset and their after dinner party time.
The Fabled Willie T Party Boat
There is a ton ‘o fun to be had at the Willie T. floating bar and restaurant, also a destination for several of the numerous regattas held in these waters every year.
Day 2 – Leave early from the Bight on Norman Island so you can get to the Baths early.
The main attraction today is the huge rock formation called the Baths, on the southwestern tip of Virgin Gorda. Click HERE to view the Island. We consider it tops on our favorites list.
If going to the Baths, we strongly recommend getting there early in the morning, especially when visiting in popular seasons.
It’s quite possible to leave from the Bight or from your anchorage in front of Spanishtown, Virgin Gorda and sail up to North Sound, Virgin Gorda, home to the famous Bitter End Yacht Club anchorage. More on this location, below.
(Picture compliments of www.britishvirginislands.com)
Anegada’s local name is The Drowned Island. Its highest point is about 28 feet. You can visit with the re-introduced flock of flamingos, see roadside fields full of the beautiful indigenous purple orchids, and in settled conditions, snorkel on the most beautiful Reef from Loblolly Bay, in my opinion, in all of the Virgin Islands.
Your Captain will tell you if conditions are right for making this trip, but if you leave from North Sound, Virgin Gorda, location of the world famous Bitter End Yacht Club, it’s usually a straight shot usually on a reach, if sailing. If you have chosen to eat dinner off the yacht, this is the BEST place to do that. You will never again taste the delicious flesh of the Caribbean Spiny Lobster the way they do it here. Grilled outdoors, slowly steamed on the local Manjack branch fires. Oh, it is just so yummy!
Before you leave: Things to do while visiting North Sound Virgin Gorda:
Eustatia Reef is just to the North of the Cut between Prickly Pear Island and the North end of Virgin Gorda. A short dinghy ride will take you there. View unbroken vistas of the Atlantic Ocean while floating over fields of colorful fish and corals.
Try your skill at windsurfing off a little beach near the resort. Hike up the goat trail just West of Byras Creek resort (currently closed, but there are plans to reopen it). At the top, the whole Atlantic comes into view. It’s staggeringly beautiful. Imagine the pirate ships approaching to plunder the square rigged traders in the Sir Francis Drake channel. Stroll the whole area surrounding the Bitter End Yacht Club. It is a truly lovely little hike and suitable for all ages
PS: There are NO poisonous snakes on any of these islands.
If going to Anegada as described above, your Captain will direct the right time of day to leave. It is essential that the sun be at the right angle to watch out for black coral heads in the shallow water. You can troll for fish on your way over. (Please inquire about BVI fishing licenses well ahead of your charter. You must have one to fish anywhere in the BVI waters.)
As you depart North Sound, and clear Prickly Pear Island on starboard and Mosquito Island to port, be sure to take a long, long look at Necker and Moskito Islands
You might have heard of Sir Richard Branson? Necker is his island and it too could be yours for around $27,000 for one week for two. BUT, this is only for a few special weeks set aside. This island is private, including the beaches and sparkling celebs have frequently stayed here. Sir Richard has lemurs on this island, and is busily working to reintroduce Scarlet Ibis, Flamingos and Roseate Spoonbills. You might see some flying from there.
Recently, tours of the lemurs and other wildlife on this island can be arranged for some periods during the year with arrangements well in advance.
Day 3 If not going to Anegada:
Prepare to slide off the wind west to enter the backside channel, past Marina Cay, near Great Camanoe, Scrub Island Resort and go through the cut at Trellis Bay to make a lunch stop at World Famous Monkey Point on Guana Island. All our charter guests got a special prize when they could see and guess the reason for the name of this place.
If not dining aboard, visit De Loose Mongoose Restaurant in the Beef Island Guest House, a favourite with the locals.
You can also visit Marina Cay (pronounced like “key”), a small island with a big history.
Here you will find the famous red phone booth unchanged for oh, so many years.
Take a rest for a while. No shoes here.
Day 4: You can choose to stay in the area for a second night, but this one in Cam Bay, just off Great Camanoe island or in Lee Bay, around the back side. (Cam Bay is a tight fit and might not be available for nightly anchoring. Your Captain will advise.) Fabulous snorkeling behind the protecting reef and hiking through the dry forest, an archeological site. Bonefishing on the flats there is very popular as well.
Day 5: Prepare to slide off the wind west to enter the backside channel, past Marina Cay, near Great Camanoe/Scrub Island Resort and go through the cut at Long Bay, Tortola, BVI to make a lunch stop at World Famous Monkey Point on Guana Island. All our charter guests got a special prize when they could see and guess the reason for the name of this place.
And I’m not tellin’!
Snorkel in pristine waters off this point, watch for octopus, tarpon, squid and so many more fishes to play with. And the bird activity is fabulous.
The moorings there are only for day stops, so depending on weather and time of year, see below for what Day 6 might include
Day 6: Cane Garden Bay, North shore of Tortola, BVI
“I hear it gets better, that’s what they say
Just as soon as we sail on to Cane Garden Bay.”
Songster, Poet Jimmy Buffett knew exactly what he was talking about. This is a wonderful place to get off the boat, walk around, visit some of the world famous restaurants. It’s a leisurely stroll suitable for all ages
Note: If the wintertime North Swell is running, it’s best to choose Alternate Day 6, below. Your Captain will make this decision based on conditions.
Alternate Day 6:
Jost Van Dyke, BVI
Oh, my who hasn’t heard about Jost? (Pronounced with a soft “J”)
(Map compliments of www.onlinebvi.com)
Next stop: Diamond Cay, Little Jost Van Dyke
Here you will find the home of Foxy’s Taboo. Take a look HERE.
Visit Sandy Spit, one of the most beautiful beaches anywhere on earth. That could be you anchored off there. Just ask
Photo by famous BVI photographer, Christian Wheatley.
View his page HERE where you can purchase prints.
His photographic collection is awesome!
Green Cay and Sandy Spit off of Little Jost Van Dyke
And what about the now world famous (well, maybe not the whole world, yet, which is a good thing) Bubbly Pool!! It’s a short walk down a goat trail and is fabulous when the North Swell is running!! You will be immersed, safely, in ocean foam from the North Atlantic.
Click this link: Visit this magical place. Your Captain will instruct you how to stay safe when the waves are high, usually in the Winter months.
Here you can spend the night or slide on down to Great Harbor on Jost Van Dyke, home to so many famous bars and restaurants.
Foxy’s son, Seddy Callwood, has a great little bar/restaurant. “One Love”
And here, too, is the home of the famous Painkiller: The Soggy Dollar Bar. (Named for decades of sailors who swam shore to get a cold one. Of course, with dripping wet money!)
And Seddy’s brother, Wendell, offers Wendell’s World. Great fun, and all of this situated on the gorgeous white sand beach.
Visit Corsairs Bar/Restaurant. Pirates were often called Corsairs and you’ll be meetin’ Pirates here, matey!
For more complete information about the whole of Jost Van Dyke, please visit this link.
As one local told me: “It is illegal in the BVI not to try its most famous drink!” So, you wouldn’t want to violate the law, right? Try one of these Famous Painkillers!
For now, our little excursion has ended and I had to stop counting the days for your trip. It’s just so hard to do and so much is up to you! Come, see for yourself.
Most charters are for 7 nights/8 days from noon to noon. Of course, you could always opt for longer on board. Why not see more?
You can see that we, of Slip Aweigh Charters Inc. truly love this place. It was hard to leave the charter yachting business afloat after so many years. But we still can have fun booking your unforgettable vacation in the BVI. It’s a natural jewel of an island chain featuring protected waters, delightful snorkeling and diving sites and sunsets unable to be described. More colors of blue than you ever thought possible.
Don’t you think it’s time you came to visit?
Give us a call at 866.297.0163 (US Phone/Fax)
or local office: 727.289.4372 Cell: 727.324.9471 Eastern Time Zone
Oh, and here’s an easy way to contact us. Click here to fill in this form and we’ll set to work creating a vacation especially for you and unlike any other you’ve ever dreamed about.
Some links for additional information on the British Virgin islands…
A lot of information is found HERE
See yourselves on the Web.
Yacht Shots BVI will shoot action pictures of you on your yacht
available for viewing, sharing and for purchase online.