Exciting Places to Visit in the US Virgin Islands
Your best travel guide to the islands of the Caribbean and more.
Exciting Places to Visit in the US Virgin IslandsPosted on June 4. 2014
Once you have decided to go to the U.S. Virgin Islands, you may find yourself starting to wonder what you will do once you get there. It goes without saying that your days will be filled with plenty of sun, sand and sea, but for those times you would like to venture a little further, St. Thomas, St. Croix and and St. John are all full of sights to keep you busy on your holiday. Here is our list of the best places to visit in US Virgin Islands.
Blackbeard’s Castle – St. Thomas
Originally constructed by the Danish and dubbed “The Sky Tower”, Blackbeard’s Castle is a national historic place, and a wonderful reward after the steep walk up Charlotte Amalie’s famous 99 Steps. A sight to behold in their own right, the 99 Steps lead from the main center of town straight up to the castle, which provides a great vantage point over Charlotte Amalie’s harbor and was allegedly often used by the famous pirate Blackbeard for just that purpose. According to legend, Blackbeard would lurk in the grounds around the castle keeping an eye on the harbor below for potential threats. You don’t have to trek up the 99 Steps to reach the castle, as taking a cab to the castle is also an option, but to fully recreate Blackbeard’s journey, we recommend the 99 Steps. Just make sure to pack a bottle or two of water.
Drake’s Seat – St. Thomas
A lonely green bench doesn’t usually make our lists of top tourist sights, but not all benches are Drake’s Seat. Another famous vantage point on St. Thomas, Drake’s Seat was used by a much different type of sailor than Blackbeard, the one and only Sir Francis Drake. Drake used this vantage point to scout ships in the distance and to gauge the incoming weather and now the bench is there as a symbol of the time he spent on the island and provides breathtaking views. We recommend stopping by around sunset to avoid the bulk of the daytripper crowds and the colorful skies the islands are famous for.
Virgin Islands National Park – St. John
The most touristed sight and one of the best places to visit in US Virgin Islands, Virgin Islands National Park was created when a member of the famous Rockefeller family donated thousands of acres of land under the condition they be used for preservation. In doing so, a national park was created that covers two-thirds of the island, essentially making St. John an unparalleled natural oasis. The park is home to plenty of secluded bays with wide sandy beaches, scores of hiking trails, snorkeling and diving opportunities and the remnants of old sugar mills. There are some places to stay in the park, but most people use it as the ultimate day trip.
Cruzan Rum Distillery – St. Croix
Billing itself as “The World’s Most Honored Rum Distillery”, the Cruzan Rum Distillery on St. Croix is a sight to behold, and good place to hold and sip a bit of rum. The distillery has been in operation for over 250 years and is so much a part of the culture on St. Croix that their name is an homage to the nickname for residents of the island, which is “Crucian”. A stop by the distillery will fill you with history and a sample or two of the smooth rum.
Fort Christiansvaern – St. Croix
Built by the Danes in 1749, this pastel yellow fort is a meticulously maintained relic to a time gone by. In its heydey, the fort served as a defense against pirate raids and a shelter from hurricanes, but nowadays it is a U.S. National Park that allows you to step back in time. The dungeons are always a hit with tourists, even though they aren’t for the faint of heart or the claustrophobic.
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