Recommend Jan 2018 - 33

ST. THOMAS

FASTFACTS
BEST TIME TO GO: November
through May
GETTING THERE: Delta flies
from Atlanta to St. Croix and
St. Thomas
ENTRY DOCUMENTS:
Government ID for U.S. visitors;
valid passport for Canadians
CURRENCY: U.S. Dollar
INFORMATION PLEASE:
United States Virgin Islands-
visitusvi.com

Bird's-eye view of picturesque St. Thomas.

The most populous of the U.S. Virgin Islands and its capital city,
Charlotte Amalie, was not as lucky as St. Croix during hurricane
season. However, it, too, is welcoming cruise ships again, and
that has helped shops, restaurants on Main Street and Havensight
Mall, among other places to rebuild. Several resorts are in the
process of rebuilding, as well.
SEE/DO: Tour St. Thomas' historical sites, which, like those in
St. Croix, have the distinction of having been built in the tropics
by Danes. Island Tours VI and some other companies guide
couples and larger groups, offering (for example) a 2-hour tour
of three sites chosen by visitors from a menu of nine. Above
all, Fort Christian should be in that threesome because of the
architecture and the strange stories about the Danish settlers.
SIGNATURE EVENT: Fact: St. Thomas hosts the second largest
Carnival in the Caribbean, and unlike the traditional pre-Lenten
carnivals, this one, except for two preliminary events, takes place
during and after Easter weekend. It attracts many of the best
steelpan calypso bands and features a carnival village and all
sorts of parades, parties, and contests. Not only is there
a Children's Parade, but this carnival has a senior citizens'
night as well.
STAY: Emerald Beach Resort was the first resort to reopen after
hurricane season. Rooms are in 3-story buildings on Lindbergh
Bay, and every one of them has an ocean view. There's a pool,
of course, but guests can also take out kayaks or go snorkeling
right off the beach. The bartenders offer good company and artful
drinks, and the signature restaurant, Caribbean Fusion, would be
worth visiting even for people staying somewhere else.

33

U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS DEPARTMENT OF TOURISM

The largest of the U.S. Virgin Islands, ST. CROIX was also the luckiest: Lying almost 50
miles south of St. Thomas, it escaped the worst of Hurricane Maria. Resorts are either
recovering or have already re-opened, cruise ships are stopping at Christiansted, and the
island is returning to normal. St. Croix is also a fortunate island in that it can offer visitors
unsullied landscapes, excellent snorkeling and diving, and superior restaurants.
SEE/DO: Take a half- or full-day trip to Buck Island Reef National Monument,
just off the coast of St. Croix. It consists of a small, uninhabited island with a perfect
beach that's surrounded by living coral reefs-an increasing rarity-that attract great
concentrations of angelfish, parrotfish, and other colorful creatures as well as rays and
harmless barracuda and nurse sharks. Just beyond the reef are huge sea turtles and
dolphins, too.
SIGNATURE EVENT: Balter, Zion Modern Kitchen, and other restaurants have made
St. Croix a destination for foodies, and since the turn of the 21st century the island has
spotlighted its cuisine at the annual Taste of St. Croix Festival. The 2018 edition, April
12-15, will gather chefs, farmers, international rum and wine makers, and gourmets for
a series of tastings, cooking contests, a cooking class for children, and Cuisine on the
Green for golfers.
STAY: Occupying a long beach at the edge of semi-Bohemian Frederiksted, Sand
Castle on the Beach offers a warm welcome, kayaking and snorkeling gear, and one
of the best beach bar/restaurants in the USVI. Sand Castle attracts families and both
mixed- and same-sex couples with accommodations, mostly in single-story cottages,
that offer a range of rates, views, and layouts, including a few that have kitchen facilities.

U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS

ST. CROIX


http://www.visitusvi.com

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