must-see attractions u.s. virgin islands
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Imagine standing where the sky meets the ocean, where the waves tell stories of never-ending voyages and the sun helps the sand glisten like diamonds—this is where your dreams merge with reality in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Here, every corner whispers tales of discovery and every hidden cove invites you to stay a little longer. From the vibrant streets of St. Thomas to the untouched sanctuaries on St. John and St. Croix, the archipelago offers a recipe for adventure, tranquility, and delight that can’t be found anywhere else. Whether you aim to explore the U.S. Virgin Islands attractions or simply find the best spots to let your soul dance with the palms, this guide is your compass to the must-visit spots in the U.S. Virgin Islands, ensuring your vacation brims with the essence of Caribbean enchantment.

With a captivating mix of pristine beaches, historical depths, and natural wonders, the islands serve not just as a destination but as a transformative experience. The best things to do in the U.S. Virgin Islands are not just acts of visiting, but of embracing; feeling the heartbeat of the earth in each step you take on its ancestral grounds and allowing the timeless beauty to rejuvenate your very spirit. Ready your senses to bask in the cultural tapestry and verdant allure as you explore the attractions of the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Table of Contents

Key Takeaways

  • Embrace the natural beauty and historical richness of the U.S. Virgin Islands.
  • Identify the top locations that make the U.S. Virgin Islands a perfect Caribbean getaway.
  • Blend adventure with relaxation as you explore diverse landscapes and cultures.
  • Capture the essence of the islands through must-visit spots and hidden gems.
  • Plan an itinerary that includes the best experiences the U.S. Virgin Islands have to offer.
  • Discover why these islands are renowned for their breathtaking beaches and vibrant local life.

Discover the Beauty of Virgin Islands National Park, St. John

Welcome to a corner of paradise where the natural world seamlessly intertwines with centuries-old stories, the Virgin Islands National Park on St. John. Recognized as one of the must-see attractions in the U.S. Virgin Islands, this area covers an astonishing two-thirds of the island and offers a treasure trove of breathtaking experiences for the intrepid explorer in you.

Uncover the Rich History and Diverse Ecosystems

The park’s landscape is a quilt woven with the vibrant threads of biodiverse ecosystems and fascinating history. Here, amidst the natural splendor, you can encounter remnants of the presence of the Taino Indigenous peoples and explore historic ruins that bring the island’s colonial sugar production days to life. As you wander, keep your eyes peeled for wildlife, including the elegant white-tail deer and the charming feral donkeys, sure to add a thrilling dimension to your visit.

Embark on Hiking Adventures Through Tropical Rainforests

If you’re yearning for adventure, lace-up your hiking boots and set out on the trails that carve through lush tropical rainforests. These paths are more than mere routes; they’re passages into an enchanting world, where every step can lead to a new discovery—from a hidden cascade to the sight of a rare bird perched in the canopy.

Relax on Secluded White Sand Beaches

Your journey through Virgin Islands National Park wouldn’t be complete without some time spent on its secluded white sand beaches. Imagine lounging by the edge of the crystalline waters of the Caribbean Sea, where the gentle lapping of waves and the caress of the tropical breeze conspire to create a serene escape from the outside world.

Whether you’re seeking to delve into the intriguing tales of the past or to immerse yourself in sheer natural beauty, Virgin Islands National Park stands out as one of the premier U.S. Virgin Islands travel destinations. Its vibrant tapestry of history, wildlife, and idyllic landscapes await your discovery.

Stroll Through the Historic Town of Christiansted, St. Croix

When you explore U.S. Virgin Islands attractions, the quaint cobblestoned streets of Christiansted, St. Croix, offer a tapestry of history and culture that entices every traveler. Here, the past and present merge at every corner, inviting you to uncover historic landmarks of the U.S. Virgin Islands and immerse yourself in the distinctly Danish colonial architecture that defines this storied town.

Christiansted’s heartbeat is its National Historic Site, where the vibrancy of island life has thrived for centuries. Take a step back in time and feel the ghost of Alexander Hamilton’s footsteps, as it was here that one of America’s founding fathers spent his formative years. Allow yourself to be enchanted as you wander through well-preserved fortifications and marvel at the stately Government House and the old Danish Customs House.

Your stroll through the historic district isn’t just a passage through time—it’s also an invitation to savor today. Engage with local artisans in vibrant marketplaces, sip on a bespoke rum cocktail from a waterfront tiki bar, and bask in the warm hospitality of the town’s charming cafes.

Historic LandmarkDescriptionVisitor Tip
Fort ChristiansvaernA well-preserved yellow citadel offering insights into colonial life and defense mechanisms.Check out the dungeon and courtrooms, and view the historical exhibits inside the fort.
Steeple BuildingAn iconic structure that served various purposes over time including a church, town hall, and bakery.Don’t miss out on the upstairs exhibits which rotate throughout the year.
Scale HouseThis historic building was where goods such as sugar and molasses were weighed before export.Take a look at the old scales and weighing equipment still present in the building.

The allure of Christiansted St. Croix is more than its landmarks; it’s in the seamless blend of historical discovery and leisurely beach life. After exploring, take a short journey to nearby Shoys Beach where the soft sand and crystal-clear waters promise the perfect endpoint to your adventurous day in one of the most captivating historic landmarks in the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Unveiling the Mysteries of Buck Island, St. Thomas

As one of the must-see attractions in the U.S. Virgin Islands, Buck Island St. Thomas is a sanctuary hidden beneath the waves. Here you are promised a tapestry of aquatic life, pristine waters, and a sense of adventure that beckons with every splash. Although the island itself is out of bounds to protect its natural ecosystem, the waters around it are a playground for snorkelers and divers alike, offering some of the most breathtaking underwater experiences in the Caribbean.

Snorkel in the Renowned Turtle Cove

Imagine gliding alongside majestic sea turtles in their natural habitat; this is the reality at Turtle Cove. Here, the clear visibility of the warm Caribbean Sea allows for an unparalleled snorkeling U.S. Virgin Islands experience. The vibrant marine life, coupled with the serene beauty of the coral gardens, provides a snorkel adventure that’s both meditative and awe-inspiring.

Witness a Shipwreck at Shipwreck Cove

The mysterious allure of the ocean depths unveils a piece of history at Shipwreck Cove. The site features Señor Cartanza, a sunken vessel that serves as a living museum and a testament to maritime history. Enthusiasts can dive to explore the intimate details of this underwater relic, observing how an artificial reef has begun to form and support local sea life, adding another layer of intrigue to the island’s offerings.

Snorkeling with Sea TurtlesTurtle CoveSwim amidst the gentle sea turtles and vibrant coral reefs
Shipwreck ExplorationShipwreck CoveDive to discover the submerged history of Señor Cartanza

Your journey to the U.S. Virgin Islands is not complete without delving into the underwater mysteries that await at Buck Island, St. Thomas. Whether your interest lies in snorkeling with the ocean’s gentle giants or uncovering the secrets of shipwrecks, the treasures beneath the sea’s surface promise an unforgettable escapade.

Honeymoon Beach and Water Island Explorations

Imagine a secluded slice of paradise where the sun caresses your skin, and the soft melodies of the ocean’s waves whisper peace into the air. This is the reality at Honeymoon Beach on Water Island, one of the popular attractions in the U.S. Virgin Islands that truly captures the hearts of those who visit. Known for its elegant shorelines and serene waters, Honeymoon Beach offers an intimate retreat just across the bustling harbor of St. Thomas.

Honeymoon Beach Water Island

Your journey to Water Island is an adventure in itself. As you arrive, the notion of island time seizes you, suggesting a slower, more deliberate way of enjoying life’s pleasures. Whether you’re soaking up the sun with your loved one, reveling in the lively atmosphere of tiki bars, or engaging in exhilarating water sports, this destination is clearly among the top places to visit in the U.S. Virgin Islands.

For the curious explorers at heart, consider renting a golf cart to navigate the quaint pathways that criss-cross the island. Here, you’ll discover historical treasures like the remnants of a World War II fort, creating a tapestry of the past against the backdrop of Water Island’s lush landscapes.

  • Take in the island’s picturesque scenery and unwind to the rhythmic ebbing of the Caribbean Sea.
  • Engage with the local community and imbibe the flavors of island cuisine at a beachside eatery.
  • Experience the tranquility that is so often sought and seldom found, which Water Island effortlessly delivers.

Revel in the laid-back charm and hidden wonders that Water Island presents, truly making it a jewel among the U.S. Virgin Islands’ popular attractions.

Must-See Attractions U.S. Virgin Islands

As you chart your course through the U.S. Virgin Islands, set sail for an exploration of the top spots that epitomize the allure of this tropical haven. Your journey will uncover the vibrant lifestyle, marine adventures, and the untouched natural beauty that these islands generously offer to each traveler.

Capture the Essence of Cruz Bay’s Caribbean Lifestyle

Submerge yourself in the laid-back yet spirited atmosphere of Cruz Bay, the heart of St. John. This bustling waterfront is a treasure trove of local boutiques, fine dining, and golden-hour celebrations that typify Caribbean bliss.

Experience the Underwater Wonderland at Coral World Ocean Park, St. Thomas

Adjacent to the cultural immersion of Cruz Bay lies Coral World Ocean Park on St. Thomas—your gateway to an aquatic spectacle. Combining education with exhilaration, the park presents an incredible opportunity to swim alongside majestic sea turtles and a myriad of marine life, placing you at the center of an enchanting underwater universe.

Savor the Natural Bliss of Sandy Point National Wildlife Refuge, St. Croix

No visit to the U.S. Virgin Islands would be complete without experiencing the serene sanctuary of Sandy Point National Wildlife Refuge on St. Croix. It is a bastion of the islands’ commitment to conservation, serving as a vital nesting ground for the leatherback sea turtles and introducing you to coastal landscapes that remain touchingly unspoiled.

AttractionHighlightsExperience Type
Cruz Bay, St. JohnShopping, Dining, Sunset ViewsCultural & Coastal
Coral World Ocean Park, St. ThomasMarine Life Encounters, Educational ExhibitsAdventure & Learning
Sandy Point, St. CroixWildlife Observation, Pristine BeachesNature & Relaxation

In signing off on this section, prepare to mark these popular attractions in the U.S. Virgin Islands on your itinerary. Seize the chance to revel in the diverse tapestry of experiences from the vivacious Cruz Bay to the underwater wonders of Coral World Ocean Park, St. Thomas, ending with the tranquility of Sandy Point in St. Croix—a snapshot of why these islands emerge as premier U.S. Virgin Islands travel destinations.

Top Places to Visit in U.S. Virgin Islands: Magens Bay, St. Thomas

Encounter the serene beauty of Magens Bay St. Thomas, where a sweep of white sands and azure waters create a panorama of Caribbean perfection. Known as one of the stunning beaches in the U.S. Virgin Islands, Magens Bay is enveloped by lush greenery and the gently rolling hills. Your visit to this heavenly retreat promises a tranquil escape from the bustle of everyday life.

Serenity and scenic views are the hallmarks of Magens Bay, making it a priority on your list of top places to visit in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Whether you’re sunbathing on its soft sands or taking a refreshing swim in its clear waters, the bay’s natural enclave offers a sense of privacy rare in popular tourist spots.

Magens Bay is where the symphony of waves and the whisper of tropical breezes create an ambience that’s purely magnetic.
  • Swim in the calm, sheltered waters ideal for families and leisurely swims.
  • Explore the nature trail winding through the rich coastal flora.
  • Experience kayaking and paddleboarding in the bay’s serene waters.
  • Indulge in a picnic under the shade of sea grape trees lining the shore.

As the sun sets on Magens Bay St. Thomas, the skies paint a breathtaking scene—one that captivates and stays with you long after your return. Plan your visit to this celestial cove, a gem among the top places to visit in the U.S. Virgin Islands, and immerse yourself in its astounding natural elegance.

Experience Tranquility in Coral Bay, St. John

If you’re aiming to explore U.S. Virgin Islands attractions, a haven of peace and local charm awaits you in Coral Bay, St. John. Here, the pace of life slows, inviting you to immerse in an ambiance that stands in contrast to the livelier spots of the islands. Coral Bay is not only a place to unwind but also a destination replete with authentic island culture. Let’s delve into what makes Coral Bay a tranquil U.S. Virgin Islands destination worth visiting.

For starters, the rustic and cozy allure of Coral Bay’s bars and eateries embodies the area’s unpretentious appeal. It’s a spot where you can savor local cuisine with a backdrop of stunning, unspoiled coastal views. Away from the bustle of more tourist-centric locales, Coral Bay offers a glimpse into the life of residents, lending itself to a genuine experience for travelers seeking to connect with the essence of island living.

Surrounding the tranquil village are gatekeepers of natural beauty. You’ll find entry points to some of Virgin Islands National Park‘s secluded gems, such as Salt Pond Beach. These treasured spots provide a quiet retreat into nature, where the Caribbean sun pairs with gentle sea breezes to craft the perfect serene day out. To help you visualize your journey, here’s a snapshot of the quiet allure that Coral Bay offers:

AttractionActivityWhy It’s Tranquil
Salt Pond BeachSwimming, SnorkelingSecluded setting for a peaceful beach day
Coral Bay Bars & EateriesDining, Live MusicIntimate, close-knit community vibe
Nature TrailsHiking, Wildlife ViewingQuiet pathways amidst lush greenery

The allure of Coral Bay St. John lies in its ability to provide visitors with a setting that feels a world away from the ordinary. Whether you’re lounging on the sun-warmed sands of a hidden cove, sampling the catch of the day in a breezy beachfront shack, or simply taking in the panoramic vistas, Coral Bay invites you to experience tranquility on your terms.

Seize the Day at Point Udall, St. Croix

As the sun peeks above the horizon, there’s no place you’d rather be than Point Udall, St. Croix. For those looking for the best things to do in U.S. Virgin Islands, a visit here is an encounter with the sublime open vistas that captivate both the heart and soul. Revel in the moment where America’s day begins and envelop yourself in the profound natural beauty U.S. Virgin Islands are celebrated for.

Sunrise at Point Udall St. Croix

Marvel at Sunrise from the Easternmost U.S. Point

Witnessing the daybreak at Point Udall is more than a mere item on a traveler’s itinerary; it’s a profound experience that becomes etched in memory. As the easternmost point of the United States, Point Udall offers a unique geographical significance, making every sunrise shared here deeply personal and intrinsically beautiful.

Connect with Nature’s Splendor and Serenity

Boasting minimal human interference, Point Udall is a sanctuary where the Caribbean Sea meets the sky in harmonious splendor. It’s a vantage for self-reflection, a retreat from the hum of daily life, and an unmissable chance to connect with the earth. Here, every sense is engaged, from the sound of the rolling waves to the gentle caress of the tropical breeze – an embodiment of the untouched allure of the natural beauty U.S. Virgin Islands proudly owns.


As your journey through this article comes to an end, the adventure awaiting you in the U.S. Virgin Islands is just about to begin. Immerse yourself in a travel experience that’s as rich in history as it is in breathtaking scenery. From the lush trails of Virgin Islands National Park to the historic streets of Christiansted, every corner of this archipelago offers something wondrous to explore.

Planning Your U.S. Virgin Islands Adventure

Your itinerary can be as diverse as the islands themselves—chart a course that will have you traversing through the heart of St. John or lounging on the renowned sands of Magens Bay. Whatever your travel desires, the U.S. Virgin Islands cater to all with a seamless meld of cultural vibrancy and natural splendor. Prepare to navigate the must-visit spots of the U.S. Virgin Islands, ensuring to include the lesser-known, yet equally captivating, attractions that make this destination truly unique.

Why the U.S. Virgin Islands are a Caribbean Gem

The U.S. Virgin Islands are not just a place to visit; they are a mosaic of experiences that will enchant you with their singular charm. Here, you can savor local flavors, delve into the depths of marine life, and stand at the edge of America’s daybreak at Point Udall. With each U.S. Virgin Islands travel destination offering its own story, you’ll find that to truly explore U.S. Virgin Islands attractions is to uncover layers of an untold narrative. The allure of these islands is undeniable—a Caribbean gem waiting for you to discover its full glory.


What are the top must-see attractions in the U.S. Virgin Islands?

When visiting the U.S. Virgin Islands, the must-visit spots include Virgin Islands National Park on St. John for its pristine beaches and hiking adventures, the historic town of Christiansted on St. Croix, the snorkeling paradise of Buck Island near St. Thomas, and the tranquil Magens Bay on St. Thomas.

Can you uncover the rich history and diverse ecosystems in the Virgin Islands National Park?

Yes, Virgin Islands National Park on St. John offers a rich tapestry of history with relics from the Taino Indigenous people and sugar plantation ruins, alongside a diverse ecosystem of tropical rainforests, white sand beaches, and marine habitats.

What historic landmarks can you explore in Christiansted, St. Croix?

Christiansted, St. Croix, is home to a wealth of historic landmarks including the Christiansted National Historic Site, which highlights the Danish colonial architecture, Fort Christiansvaern, and various historical buildings that reflect the island’s storied past.

What underwater wonders can you explore near Buck Island, St. Thomas?

Near Buck Island, St. Thomas, adventurers can explore the famous Turtle Cove, known for its sea turtles, and Shipwreck Cove, which houses the enchanting marine life around the sunken ship Señor Cartanza.

What makes Honeymoon Beach on Water Island a must-visit?

Honeymoon Beach on Water Island is a must-visit for its serene beauty, local tiki bars, and water sports that encapsulate the laid-back island lifestyle. It’s easily accessible from St. Thomas and offers a peaceful retreat.

How can you experience the essence of Cruz Bay’s Caribbean lifestyle?

In Cruz Bay, St. John, you can immerse yourself in the Caribbean lifestyle by strolling through the waterfront district, shopping at local boutiques, dining at exquisite restaurants, and enjoying the festive atmosphere during the evening’s happy hours.

What unique experiences does Coral World Ocean Park in St. Thomas offer?

Coral World Ocean Park in St. Thomas allows visitors to swim with turtles, encounter marine life up close, and learn about the ocean through interactive exhibits and activities, providing an exceptional blend of education and entertainment.

Why is Sandy Point National Wildlife Refuge important for wildlife conservation?

Sandy Point National Wildlife Refuge on St. Croix plays a critical role in wildlife conservation, especially as a nesting habitat for the endangered leatherback sea turtles, and it offers visitors a chance to observe these creatures in their natural environment.

Why is Magens Bay considered a stunning beach in the U.S. Virgin Islands?

Magens Bay on St. Thomas is renowned for its stunning natural beauty, with a sheltered white sand beach, clear calm waters, and lush green hills surrounding it, making it ideal for swimming, sunbathing, and enjoying the tranquility of the Caribbean.

What experiences can you have in Coral Bay, St. John?

In Coral Bay, St. John, you can experience a quieter side of island life, with its quaint and rustic charm, local eateries, and access to some less frequented yet exquisite parts of Virgin Islands National Park such as Salt Pond Beach.

What can visitors expect when they visit Point Udall, St. Croix at sunrise?

Visitors to Point Udall, St. Croix at sunrise can expect breathtaking views as the day dawns over America’s easternmost point, offering a unique moment of tranquility and a connection to the untouched beauty of the Caribbean landscape.

Why are the U.S. Virgin Islands considered a Caribbean gem?

The U.S. Virgin Islands are considered a Caribbean gem for their combination of unspoiled beaches, historical and cultural richness, vibrant local lifestyles, and unique ecological wonders, offering an authentic and diverse travel experience.

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By Guy Wann

About the Author: Guy Wann's lifelong enthusiasm for fishing traces back to his childhood when he and his friend Jeff Hass embarked on youthful fishing adventures, laying the groundwork for a lifelong passion. Together, they established a fishermen's club, a cornerstone in their lives, reflecting their dedication to the sport. In addition to his love for fishing, Guy is a talented artist, channeling his experiences and emotions into his paintings. His fishing quests have led him to diverse destinations worldwide, from the vibrant canals of Amsterdam to the serene Gulf of Thailand, the lush Philippine islands, the rich Mexican waters, and the picturesque Florida Keys. Born and raised in Ojai, California, Guy has honed his fishing skills in local waters before expanding his horizons globally. Now, alongside Jeff, Guy pours his passion into the "Take Me Fishing Travel" blog, documenting their fishing expeditions and the unique destinations they uncover. The blog not only chronicles their adventures across Amsterdam, the Gulf of Thailand, the Philippines, Mexico, and the Florida Keys but also serves as a platform for their future aspirations. It stands as a tribute to their enduring friendship and shared love for fishing, highlighting Guy's journey from a young enthusiast in Ojai to a worldly fisherman and artist.

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