Are you having trouble finding a place to get away during these turbulent times due to COVID-19? Trust me, so is everyone. What you might want to consider is what has turned out to be the easiest charter location in the Caribbean: The US Virgin Islands. Having run charters on Guiding Light, my Lagoon 410, in the Virgin Island for most of the last decade, I can tell you St. John is an amazing charter location and one you will not regret checking out.
I know what you are thinking: A week to go around one island? Simply stated, you bet. St. John is packed with such a variety of different activities that you will love it and below is a sample of what a week around St. John would look like. Enjoy!
Day 1 – Pick up or meet your boat. I prefer to start in Red Hook because it is on the east end of St. Thomas and a good jumping-off spot. If you start in Charlotte Amalie then you simply need to add a two-hour upwind motor to get to the east end. The first stop is on the southwest corner of St. John and it is the secluded Rendezvous Bay. Tuck up into the eastern part of the bay just off a rocky beach. Here you have the choice of two different snorkel spots. The one to the left is against the cliff side and you will be amazed at the variety of sea creatures you will find. The second spot is on the opposite side of the boat. This one is from the edge of the beach all the way out to the point. Halfway out you will start to find large rocks, walls, and overhangs that are covered in coral and fish. This snorkel is a bit deeper (15-25 feet) and more advanced, but is amazing.
Day 2 – The first stop will be in Reef Bay in order to hike up to see the 500- to 1000-year-old Pre- Colombian Petroglyphs and the last active sugar factory on St. John. It is also the only one that brought in steam equipment to run the factory. Once you are done with your hike head half a mile or so to the east and snorkel Tektite Point in Great Lamshur Bay. This spot has some cool history as NASA and NOAA ran underwater tests here back in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Finish your day off at Salt Pond Bay where you will find only five other boats since you have to take a mooring while inside the US National Park that makes up two-thirds of St. John.
Day 3 – Start your day off with a sunrise hike out to Ram’s Head, one of the most popular hikes on St. John. Other highlights of Salt Pond Bay are the wonderful beach, turtles, and snorkeling. If you want a more adventurous snorkel then check out the cliff between Salt Pond Bay and Blue Cobblestone Beach to the south (also where the Ram’s Head hike goes by). You can also walk from the beach to the other side of the peninsula and check out the artwork people have made using the coral on the beach at Drunk Bay. Around 2-3 pm head around Ram’s Head with the boat and find a place to anchor in Coral Bay so you can have dinner at Skinny Legs, which is a funky little burger and sandwich joint that people love to visit.