This visitor put up is written by Theresa McKinney, a USVI fanatic and journey blogger:
Are you touring to St. John within the U.S. Virgin Islands quickly, however worry crowded seashores will put a damper in your journey? Whereas it’s true that many well-liked seashores, like Maho and Trunk, refill every day, there are nonetheless loads of methods to keep away from the crowds. Merely head to those underrated St. John seashores that draw far much less folks, however are simply as gorgeous.
As St. John is two-thirds lined by Virgin Islands Nationwide Park, there may be loads of pristine magnificence to go round. These signifies that whereas some lesser-known seashores might sacrifice facilities and comfort, they may nonetheless ship unbelievable views and solitude. There are additionally methods to counteract the inconveniences, or just embrace them, like a doing a scenic hike that results in a seaside.
With that, let’s dive into six of probably the most underrated St. John seashores, and why they’re completely value your time.
1. Denis Bay
Denis Bay is a prolonged seaside lined with fluffy white sand and delightful jewel-toned water. Whereas this seaside just isn’t very protected and will get some swells and wind, it’s nonetheless attainable to swim and snorkel right here. Simply remember the fact that some components of the seaside are a bit rocky, and that you simply could be alone.
What deters most individuals from reaching Denis Bay is the truth that it requires 1 / 4 mile hike down a slender path. Whereas not tough when taking place to the seaside, the gradual uphill climb heading again is a bit of tougher. That is additional sophisticated in the event you carry lots with you, like chairs and coolers.
There’s a small parking zone firstly of the path, the place it’s normally simple to discover a spot. As soon as on the seaside, there are many timber for shade, and certain only a couple different teams round. Benefit from the view of the British Virgin Islands within the distance.
As an added tour, take into account mountain climbing 100 toes as much as the Peace Hill Windmill destroy after visiting the seaside. From this perch you may see a number of of St. John’s different North Shore seashores beneath.
2. Salomon Bay
Salomon is a small north shore seaside that may solely be reached through mountain climbing the Lind Level Path or by boat. This restricted entry helps preserve the seaside low key and relaxed, making it a lot simpler to get pleasure from its translucent, rocky waters.
Most guests hike the Lind Level Path to achieve Salomon Bay, which is a few mile every approach. Whereas this generally is a ache for beachgoers wishing to hold coolers and chairs with them, the path is generally flat and provides sweeping views over Cruz Bay.
Salomon Bay’s clear water lends itself properly to snorkeling, and the seaside appears out towards the small cays of Pillsbury Sound. When you occur to develop uninterested in this small seaside, merely hop again onto the Lind Level Path and take the 100-meter hike onward to Honeymoon Seashore. Then you may benefit from Honeymoon’s perks, together with kayak and stand-up paddleboard leases, a snack shack, and actual bogs.
When you hike the Lind Level Path, you have to to search out parking close to the trailhead on the Cruz Bay Customer Middle. Keep away from getting towed by merely stopping inside and asking for a parking go to place in your windshield.
3. Salt Pond Seashore
For a number of the stillest waters on St. John, head to Salt Pond Seashore on the south shore. This seaside’s tremendous clear water is ideal for snorkeling, or just enjoyable with a pool floaty. The one downside is the shortage of shade and a few delicate rockiness within the sand.
A 3-quarter mile hike down a large, however bumpy path is required with a view to attain Salt Pond Seashore. Due to this fact, benefit from your onerous work by packing a lunch and making a day of it.
Moreover having fun with the dreamy water, there are a pair worthwhile hikes close by. The quick path to Drunk Bay is simply about 200 meters lengthy, flat, and doable for all ability ranges. The hike ends at a rock seaside with rougher waters than you’ll see at any of the opposite St. John seashores, because it faces out to the open Atlantic.
The cactus-lined Ram Head Path is one other hike with even higher views of the cliffs alongside St. John’s south shore. The tip of this out-and-back path is a cliff, from which you’ll be able to see the deep blue sea beneath and St. Croix within the distance.
4. Hansen Bay
Hansen Bay is positioned on St. John’s East Finish, which is one other, lesser-visited a part of the island. It’s a little bit of a drive to achieve at round half-hour from Cruz Bay, so simply sit again and benefit from the island views alongside Freeway 10.
Hansen Bay is privately owned, and there’s a discretionary donation required with a view to go to. That stated, after fee you might be free to park and use all of the facilities, which embody bathrooms, kayaks, and stand-up paddleboards. Moreover, for individuals who can’t fairly disconnect for his or her entire journey, this seaside additionally provides free WIFI.
Even with these nice perks, Hansen Bay by no means will get that crowded and has protected, clean water good for stand-up paddleboarding. That is additionally an incredible snorkel spot, the place you may see corals, all kinds of fish, and even sea turtles.
5. Francis Bay
Francis Bay has been deemed by some to be “the brand new Maho” lately. It’s because, pre-Hurricane Irma, you would get pleasure from Maho Seashore’s waveless waters and sea turtles with out crowds. Since Irma, plenty of growth has occurred round Maho, which has turned it into extra of a celebration scene.
Francis Bay is positioned on St. John’s north shore, throughout the bay from Maho, and delivers most of the identical perks. It additionally has calm waters and sea turtles, however with out the event of Maho. The draw back is that Francis Bay faces immediately into the solar all day, making it onerous to search out lasting shade.
Francis Bay has some parking obtainable close to the seaside, or you would park on the trailhead to the Francis Bay Path and take the quarter mile hike. The Francis Bay Path is comparatively flat, passes an previous destroy, and ultimately turns right into a boardwalk that passes past the seaside alongside a salt pond.
6. Brown Bay
Brown Bay Seashore requires mountain climbing the Brown Bay Path to achieve it. This path entails climbing a hill each coming and going, which supplies nice views, however is difficult when carrying seaside gear with you.
Nonetheless, it’s well worth the effort, as not many individuals make it out to Brown Bay. Meaning you’ll have your decide of shade spots on this slender seaside. From shore, there’s a lovely view of Tortola within the British Virgin Islands that beats nearly another vantage level on St. John.
Brown Bay has shallow, light waters, which makes it a dream for snorkeling. Simply watch your step on the way in which in, as there are some rocks within the water. Even inexperienced snorkelers will love the straightforward waters of Brown Bay, and it’s possible you’ll get fortunate and see a starfish.
For extra on St. John take a look at my information!
Ideas for Visiting Underrated St. John Seashores
- Hire a automobile to extra simply attain lesser visited seashores on St. John, since taxis don’t journey to them as regularly. St. John Automobile Rental and Mr. Piper’s Jeeps are each nice choices.
- For seashores with much less shade, fight these highly effective rays by packing a conveyable seaside tent in your carry-on.
- Don’t overlook to carry reef protected sunscreen, as all different varieties have been outlawed on the island.
- Pack gentle! For instance, relatively than lugging chairs down a path to the seaside, merely sit on a towel as a substitute.
Whereas these seashores might need much less facilities and conveniences than the extra well-liked choices on St. John, their lack of crowds is a uncommon reward to these in search of solitude. Plus, you aren’t sacrificing something in the way in which of surroundings, as their environment are simply as attractive. Everybody ought to squeeze at the very least one in all these underrated seashores into their St. John trip schedule.
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Concerning the writer: Theresa is the creator of Fueled By Wanderlust. Though she didn’t begin touring till her mid-twenties because of some pesky scholar mortgage debt, with cautious budgeting, she was in a position to pay that off and begin planning journeys. Since then, she has traveled an increasing number of annually to numerous locations within the U.S., Europe, and the Caribbean. You possibly can observe together with Theresa’s adventures on Instagram.