Top 10 Things to See and Do

Top 10 Things to do on St John US Virgin Islands

The US Virgin Islands are a world away from the hustle and bustle of Stateside life. With a history and culture that’s distinctly Caribbean; the Virgin Islands really are more like visiting another country.

The US territory of the Virgin Islands is made up of St Croix, St Thomas and St John. Each island has its own unique charms and character. Little St John is largely undeveloped – with the VI National Park protecting over 2/3rds of the island and surrounding reefs! So come discover the unique charms of St John with our TOP 10 List of must – see activities!


Top 10 Must – Do List
for St John Virgin Islands


#1 on our list has to be Trunk Bay St John!

Trunk Bay is the most popular beach and most photographed beach in the Virgin Islands. Wonderful white sand, aqua blue waters, majestic coconut palms and an Underwater Snorkeling Trail secure it our top spot among St John beaches !

Factoid: The National Geographic Society labeled it the most beautiful beach in the world.


#2 Swim with a sea turtle.

There’s nothing like swimming with one of these amazing creatures! The best spots to see a turtle are Maho Beach, Francis Bay, Saltpond Bay and Waterlemon Cay.

Factoid: Green Sea Turtles eat mostly sea grasses and algae and can live up to 80 to 100 years.


#3 Enjoy a tropical drink.

Vacation means relaxing with a cold island libation! We recommend a Virgin Island’s favorite Painkiller or Bushwacker or a Lime’n a Coconut or tropical Margarita. Best served at one of the island’s beach bars! We recommend you try The Beach Bar, Joe’s Rum Hut, Motu and High Tide Bar & Grill. They all share wonderful views of Cruz Bay harbor. Or look for St John’s only floating bar, Angel’s Rest. Capt Pete is usually anchored up in Hansen Bay!

Factoid: Reputation has it that the original Painkiller® was created in the 1970s at the Soggy Dollar Bar at White Bay on the island of Jost Van Dyke in the British Virgin Islands.


#4 Kayak or SUP.

St John is largely undeveloped. To put some perspective on it get out on the water and discover St John the way the earliest settlers did. By sea. There are several great kayak rental and ecotour operations on St John. Check out our ecoutours and watersports listings for recommendations.

Factoid: The US purchased St John, St Thomas and St Croix from the Dutch in 1917 for $25 million in gold.


#5 Hike and snorkel Waterlemon Cay.

If you do and see nothing else …Waterlemon Cay has it all … ruins, hiking, snorkeling and a good chance to see a sea turtle …all in one excursion! NOTE: the Cay can be subject to strong currents. Always snorkel with a buddy and never exceed your level of  experience or physical conditioning.

Factoid: At its peak in the early 1800s the Annaberg Plantation produced over 300 gallons of sugar cane juice per hour!


#6 Ram Head Trail hike.

The trail begins at one of the most popular beaches on St John, Saltpond Bay. The hike to the top of Ram Head is strenuous – so bring water and try to go early in the morning. The view from the top is of St John’s rugged southern shoreline. Stunning. And you can add a short hike to Drunk Bay to see the many stone and coral sculptures that dot the rocky shoreline.

Factoid: This 1.0 mi. trail takes you to 200 feet above sea level.


#7 Shopping at Mongoose Junction.

Enjoy duty-free shopping at over 3 dozen shops, galleries and restaurants all set amid beautiful Caribbean-style stone architecture! We recommend an ice cold beer at St John Brewer’s Tap Room, a wonderful dinner at Virgin Fire Restaurant or a quick bite at Deli Grotto. And don’t miss the amazing arts and crafts galleries with stunning fine jewelry!

Factoid: Mongoose Junction started out with just 5 stores including R&I Patton Goldsmithing ( still in business and located on the main level)!


#8 Rent a Jeep and see the island.

The only way to really see St John is by renting a 4×4 vehicle. The island is 9 miles of twisting and turning roads; with scenic overlooks dotting much of North Shore Road. So get out and explore!

Factoid: Originally called the “GP”, short for General Purpose military vehicle. In the late 1940’s the cartoon character Popeye poked fun at it, calling it a “Jeep” and the same stuck.


#9 Skinny Legs – famous bar and grill.

It’s the fate of every popular spot. With fame comes “touristy”; but no worries, they still deliver their burgers with the famous “same day service” that made them famous!

Factoid: Opened in 1991, the Skinny Legs logo was modeled after the founders, Moe Chabuz and Doug Sica, own legs.


#10 Brunch at Miss Lucy’s.

This off-the-beaten-path restaurant  is located right on the cobblestone beach of Friis Bay. Their brunch is almost as famous as their Full Moon Parties!

Factoid: The moon’s distance from Earth increases by 3.8 cm each year. Scientists theorize that the moon started just 14,000 miles from the planet. That distance has increased to over 230,000 miles!


Snorkeling Etiquette

Snorkeling on St John US Virgin Islands

Are You Reef Friendly?

Each year millions of people travel to the US Virgin Islands on vacation. And one of the top vacation activities is snorkeling our world-class shallow reefs. But all of that human traffic can have a negative impact on coral, fish and marine eco systems. So, here are few snorkeling tips to help you enjoy these wonderful experiences; while minimizing your effect on sensitive marine life, coral reefs and sea grass beds.

#1 – DON’T STAND ON CORAL. Standing on or inadvertently kicking coral can kill decades of coral growth. Adjust your mask and snorkel BEFORE you go out. Use a commercial anti-fogging agent or spit method to reduce fogging. And if you get tired or need to adjust your equipment – find a shallow sandy spot to put your feet/fins down. If you are a poor swimmer or just enjoy a more relaxed adventure – consider wearing a life jacket or other floatation.

Sea turtle at Maho Bay beach#2 – AVOID SHALLOW AREAS. Coral is home to millions of bacteria and stinging coral cells. Even minor contact can leave you with cuts, scrapes and a nasty infection or stinging “burn”. In addition to being painful,  these toxins can even induce an allergic reaction in some people.

#3 – SEA TURTLES – They are amazing creatures; but avoid the temptation to touch them or ride them. If you stay motionless they will actual go back to feeding and you can watch them for hours!

#4 – AVOID COLLECT SOUVENIRS. The coral, starfish and shells you find are an integral part of the eco system. Shells are reused by other creatures for protection. The calcium and minerals of dead coral dissolve and are used by living coral to build the reef.

#5 – DON’T FEED FISH – It alters their natural feeding habits, diet and can help you and others avoid potential injury from aggressive feeding.

#6 – SEA GRASS BEDS – In many places it is illegal to damage sea grass beds. They are an important marine eco system . Sea turtles, conch and fish rely on the grasses for food. They also act as a nursery for many small fish, larval coral and crustaceans.

#7 – POLLUTION – Be sensitive to your “chemical impact” on marine life and aquatic plants. Retrieve plastic bags and bottles that blow into the water. Not only do they take many years to degrade; but countless creatures die each year because they mistake the plastic for food. Never discharge human waste or bilge water into the sea. And take care not to spill fuels, oils, lotions or other chemical contaminants.

#8 – USE CAUTION – When it comes to snorkeling, know your physical limitations and experience level and NEVER exceed them. Always snorkel with a buddy. Check local weather conditions, currents and surf advisories.

Snorkeling is a wonderful way to discover the amazing world beneath the waves while on vacation. And with a bit of care we can all experience the beauty and diversity of marine life that lives and depends on the coral reefs and sea grasses for their existence.


Discover St John’s TOP SNORKELING DESTINATIONS

Check out our ST JOHN SNORKELING MAP


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Lux’ St John Villa Rental – Bismarkia

Bismarkia, 2 bedroom St John rental villa in Fish Bay

Whether a seasoned St John visitor or new, and ready to discover the Island’s charms, the villa Bismarkia is a fantastic choice for accommodations. This luxury 2 bedroom, 2 bath villa is sure to impress. From the stately entrance to the island stonework …from the tropical landscaping to the relaxing pool area. Bismarkia is the ultimate island retreat.

After snorkeling, hiking or exploring we enjoyed coming “home” and relaxing by the pool. In fact, some days we never left the house. It was so peaceful to listen to the birds and wind through the palms – and watch the deer when they made their daily late day visit. – SL

Located in Fish Bay, Bismarkia sits between Fish Bay to the west and Reef Bay to the east. Far enough from the hustle and bustle of Cruz Bay. Yet just a 15 minute drive in to town for dinner, shopping and the Island’s ferry dock.

Enjoy over 3,300 sq’ of sophisticated yet comfortably modern island decor. Dark woods give way to cream colored walls reflected across the travertine flooring. A gourmet kitchen will delight guests …even if you never put the Bosch appliance to a proper test! A generous living room is the perfect place to socialize or just kick back and read a book. The living room seats 6 and is the perfect spot to enjoy a home cooked meal or invite in one of St John’s private chefs for an evening of food, wine and conversation that will be a lasting memory.

Named for the beautiful Bismarckia Blue Palms that dot the property, the villa embodies all that is its namesake.

With two bedrooms and two baths, Bismarkia comfortably sleeps four. The villa is equipped with central air conditioning, ceiling fans, satellite TV, wifi, outdoor grill, spa and private pool. Children are welcome.

After a day at the beach, gather around the 15′ x 24′ pool and enjoy a cool island drink. Lounge chairs and umbrella seating provide a welcome spot to soak up the sun or relax in the shade. Splash in the pool under the watchful eye of the resident mermaid statue. Or let the water cool you as you take in the garden view!

RATE INFORMATION & AVAILABILITY

Visit Bismarkia’s VRBO Listing
or contact Tammy Donnelly at (340) 779-4478

 


Disclosure: We received compensation for this article and its timing. As a for-profit company in a niche travel destination, we sometimes review local businesses that are also advertisers on our site. When we bring you items of interest, written by us, with editorial rights given to the featured advertiser you’ll see this disclosure. We do not receive commissions.


Want to know what guests had to say about Bismarkia?

Here’s a selection of testimonials. Or click to view all the VRBO testimonials of Bismarkia guests.

I started looking at villas and fell in love with Bismarkia on sight. The furniture and design were very much our style. I looked no further and immediately scheduled our week.- The Marshalls / AZ

After snorkeling, hiking or exploring we enjoyed coming “home” and relaxing by the pool. In fact, some days we never left the house. It was so peaceful to listen to the birds and wind through the palms – and watch the deer when they made their daily late day visit. – S&L / NC

The house was fabulous. You can see from the pictures what a serene setting it is. The pool and hot tub were great… – Kate / AL


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Scoops on St John

Scoops ice cream, Mongoose Junction, Cruz Bay, St John, USVI

Where: Mongoose Junction, Cruz Bay
Hours: Open daily from 9am – 11pm

Big kid or small, everybody loves ice cream! So where can you get ice cream on St John? The answer is simple …Scoops!

Located on the eastern end of Mongoose Junction in Cruz Bay, is a tiny shop that puts out some HUGE flavor! So lets check d’em out.

WOW! Adult Flavor – Stoli Orange Creamsicle!

Because these sweet concoctions are hand-made each day – flavors change almost daily! On our visit there were some old favorites and some really interesting island-inspired choices. We tried the Vanilla Bean. Full disclosure: I’m a vanilla snob. Scoops vanilla bean was sweet but not overly sweet with a really nice “real-vanilla” flavor! I would get that one again! My friend tried an adult-flavor Stoli Creamsicle. Mmmmm, another great choice! The taste of your childhood-favorite orange creamsicle with a tingly sensation of alcohol! Another round bartender …I mean ice cream lady ; )

Not in the mood for ice cream? Scoops also creates incredible raw superfood smoothies, hot and iced coffee and green tea and salt water taffy!

They post their flavors on their Facebook Page. Check it out here > Scoops Ice Cream Flavors

Secret Beaches on St John

st john virgin islands secluded beaches

Ever heard of Cololoba Beach, Limetree Cove or Mermaid’s Chair?

If you haven’t … no worries. You’re not alone. Discover these and other “secret” beaches of St John. Some are surprisingly easy to get to. While others present a bit more of a challenge! Happy beaching!

Here’s our map of St John’s “Secret Beaches”

It’s no wonder that St John’s beaches are more popular every year. As travelers bring their stories, pictures and videos back home – others are inspired to make St John their next vacation destination. But all of that popularity comes at a price and that price can be crowds. During high season St John’s top beaches like Trunk Bay beach, Cinnamon Bay and Caneel Bay see large numbers of visitors. Some are staying on island while others are cruising the Caribbean and come over from St Thomas for the day. For most of us “sharing” a beautiful beach is no problem; but for some … they seek the private adventure of a secluded beach. And St John has several destinations … so pack a lunch and set out for a day at the beach …

St John Secluded Beaches: An interactive and mobile-friendly Google Map


North Shore Beaches

It’s tough to hide a beach on the North Shore! That said, the following North Shore Beaches aren’t on everybody’s beach radar. And with world-class beaches like Trunk and Cinnamon drawing most of the attention; these beaches go relatively unnoticed! So if you’re looking for a spot away from the crowds – give one of these gems a try! We can’t promise you’ll be alone …but you just might be …!


Mermaid's Chair Beach on St John US Virgin IslandsMermaid’s Chair Beach

This secluded St John beach is well know by the local charter captains but rarely visited by anybody else. One of the reasons – it’s tough to get to by any other means than a boat. But for the adventurous, just snorkel/swim/kayak to the east side of Hawksnest Bay. About 200 yards from the beach at Oppenheimer, along the eastern shoreline, is a gem of a pocket beach. Mermaid’s Chair Beach is tiny – perhaps 25′ wide with soft white sand. NOTE: It does get shade in the first half of the day – and the beach is very narrow at high tide.


Litlle Cinnamon Bay Beach on St John

Little Cinnamon Beach

lies to the west of Cinnamon Bay beach. It’s best reached by going west along the Cinnamon Bay beach. At the end you’ll pick up a narrow trail that leads to Little Cinnamon Beach. Snorkelers will enjoy searching for the sunken airplane that’s just off the eastern section of the beach.

 

 


Little Hawksnest Beach on St JohnLittle Hawksnest Beach

lies to the left of the popular beach at Hawknest Bay. A short hike through the thicket to the left of the parking area brings you to a little pocket beach. Most travelers don’t even know it’s there. The path isn’t the easiest since it will require you to navigate across some sharp rocks and stones. But just take your time and plant each foot carefully. No rush. You’ll get there in no time. Stake out your spot and enjoy!

 


Little Maho Beach on St JohnLittle Maho Beach

lies between Big Maho and Francis Bay Beach on St John’s North Shore. You can swim/snorkel, take a dinghy or hike down from the former Maho Bay Campgrounds. This little crescent of beach gets plenty of shade – but does provide a bit of easy-to-get-to adventure if you’re tired of the crowds at Maho or Francis Beaches.

 

Click for our Complete List of North Shore Beaches


East End Beaches

White Sand Beach on St John, US Virgin IslandsWhitesand Bay

located in Hurricane Hole just past Coral Bay. you’ll need a kayak to get to the couple of sandy beaches that line Whitesand Bay. Enter where the mangroves meet East End Road. Head out and back to the west ( toward Coral Bay and Fortsberg). Just around the first point you’ll see several narrow sandy beaches. Wonderful spots to grab some beach time away from the more crowded beaches of the North Shore.

 


Limetree Cove, Saint John, US Virgin IslandsLimetree Cove

located on St John’s East End is Limetree Cove. You can reach it from Haulover South or Vie’s Hansen Bay Beach by kayak. There are several small pocket beaches; but the only sandy beach lies right in the middle of the cove. Because the properties surrounding the cove are private – you’ll have to swim/snorkel/kayak to this little gem! No worries about the little cottage right above the beach – you are free to use the beach right up to the high water mark ( where the vegetation starts) throughout the US Virgin Islands.


Mennebeck Bay, St John, US Virgin IslandsMennebeck Bay

while not technically the East End of St John, Mennebeck Bay is really only accessible via the East End. Located just west of Haulover North, this rugged coast is lined with treacherous coral reefs and high surf. If you’re looking for the ultimate adventure location, Mennebeck would be on the short list. It does have a sandy beach; but only a narrow bit of sandy access to the water! Lots of current, steep access and a nearly impossible spot to anchor make this one of the few places we don’t recommend visiting!

 

Click for our Complete List of East End Beaches


South Shore Beaches

Cololoba Beach

Located between Fish Bay and Reef Bay is a “best kept secret” among residents here. For the adventurous, you’ll discover a secluded sandy beach with dramatic waves and a small cay, Cololoba Cay, just off shore. It’s not a good swimming beach because of rocks, surf and urchins,; but  a decent snorkel and a wonderful spot to enjoy St John all to yourself. Check out this off-the-beaten-path location on Flash Earth before deciding to make the trek … Map of Cololoba Beach, St John or reference our Secluded Beaches of St John Map [ above or via the link].


Europa Bay Beach on St JohnEuropa Bay

Looking for a breathtakingly-rugged spot that’s doesn’t get crowds? Then this off-the-beaten-path “beach” might be right for you. But first you should know, the beach is cobblestone and coral, requires a 4X4 drive and hike and the bay can be subject to rough waves. Still reading? Then Europa awaits you. Pack a lunch and drinks and make a day of it. Snorkeling is best toward the eastern shoreline.

 


Kiddel Bay on St John, US Virgin IslandsKiddel Bay

lies just west of Salt Pond. It’s “beach” is pebble and stone – but it’s a great spot to spend a secluded day. Snorkeling is best along the western shoreline ( right) and treats snorkelers to dramatic structure, arches and caves teaming with fish and corals. Kiddel is reached by taking the first left after Salt Pond and then bearing left at the fork in the road. There are villas out here but this is definitely a 4×4 kind of adventure!


Grootpan Bay Beach on St John US Virgin IslandsGrootpan Bay

a couple of bays west of the ever popular Salt Pond Bay lies Grootpan Bay. It’s reached by taking the left just after Salt Pond. The road itself is narrow and poorly maintained – but well worth the trip. The beach at Grootpan is sand turning to pebble the farther you go from the parking. The water is beautiful and the bay is surrounded by a dramatic windswept landscape.


Genti Beach on St John, US Virgin IslandsGenti Bay

For the more adventurous ( and physically fit ) there’s Genti Bay. You’ll need to arrive by sea or, as is more common, hike the Reef Bay Trail. The beach is white sand but the water is a mix of coral and sea grasses. Take great care when entering the water. We recommend watersocks!

 


Parrot Bay Beach St John USVIParrot Bay

Another remote beach that is for the adventurous! Parrot Bay has a white sand beach and some wonderfully private spots for sunbathing. However, the water is shallow with a strong surf break just off shore. We do not recommend swimming or snorkeling here. Just soak up some sun and pretend you have the island to your self!

 

Click for our Complete List of South Shore Beaches

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Relax + Play at Honeymoon Beach

Honeymoon Beach All Day Pass - St John USVI

Save on St John travel promotions, deals, discounts

 

Honeymoon Beach Relax + Play Day Pass / Discount Package Deal
50% OFF Expires Dec 15th, 2014

Honeymoon Bay Beach, St John mapRELAX

Relax and spend a day at beautiful Honeymoon Beach on St John. Our All Day Pass allows you to enjoy our luxurious foam float. Need some relief from the sun? Rock yourself to sleep under tropical coconut palms in one of our hammocks! Or just sit back and watch the waves come in at Honeymoon Beach from the comfort of your beach chair. You’ll have access to flush toilets and a wide variety of cold drinks, ice cream and gifts at the Honeymoon Hut water sports shack. And relax … your valuables will be safe in your own locker!
Food and Bar Beverages are available through Caneel Bay Resort.


 

PLAY

Ready for some activity? Then you’ve come to the right place! The Honeymoon Beach Relax + Play Day Pass includes all the toys for fun at the beach. Discover the amazing world underneath the water with our snorkel gear. Or perhaps you’d like to venture farther in one of our kayaks? Need more adventure? We include a SUP, or stand up paddle board, so you can explore St John from the water.
The Honeymoon Beach Day Pass includes:
•locker •beach chair •snorkel gear: mask, snorkel, fins & flotation •floating matt • standup paddleboard • kayak •hammock
All of the above water sports equipment, including chairs, lockers and underwater cameras, can be rented individually if available.  During season, space fills up quickly for the limited equipment, so reserve early to avoid disappointment!
If you have any questions please call us toll free at 1-877-845-2925.

Relax & Play Pass details and Rates

The ALL DAY Relax & Play includes all day use of:
snorkel gear, kayak, standup paddleboard, float, life jacket, lockes, beach chair, hammock, restroom facilities.
Hours Of Operation:
9:00 to 4:00 pm 7 Days A Week.
Location:
The honeymoon hut at the Caneel Bay Resort’s, honeymoon beach.  The beach just one mile from the Cruz Bay Ferry Dock, on the Scenic North Shore Road. Its very easy to get to!
Rates: [ subject to change without notice]
Adults $49.00, Children 12 and under $10

Reservations

Space is limited! Please reserve early to avoid disappointment.

Click here to book now…

Getting to Honeymoon Bay Beach
Hiking from Cruz Bay: you pick up the Lind Point Trail which starts at the Virgin Islands National Park Visitor Center on the east side of Cruz Bay. The approx. 1 mi. hike is not particularly challenging – but plan on 20 to 30 minutes each way. Along the way you’ll have several scenic overlooks to stop and take a break and just enjoy the view.

Drive and hike: The second way to get to Honeymoon Bay beach is by taking a taxi to the Caneel Bay Resort and making the short hike along the western shoreline of Caneel Bay. You must check in at the gatehouse and pay a fee ( refunded with a $20 purchase at the Resort). Then you can either hike back along the Lind Point Trail to Cruz Bay – or call for a taxi from Caneel.

St John beaches: An interactive and mobile-friendly Google Map

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St John USVI Web Cameras

St John Web Cams

Book your St John vacation rental directly with Villa Owners and managers


St. John Ferry Dock

LIVE IMAGE! – St John Spice Cam – Cruz Bay Ferry Dock, St. John

OUR FAVORITE ST JOHN WEB CAMS – VIRGIN ISLANDSSt John USVI web cameras map
The Beach Bar – Cruz Bay
Estate Lindholm  Cruz Bay WebCam
East End of St John – East End Cam
Coral Bay St. John – East End Cam
Coral Bay ( Mtn Haven Cottage -  Bordeaux Mtn) - Coral Bay Webcam
Chocolate Hole / St John – Chocolate Hole Web Cam
Rendezvous Bay, St John – Rendezvous Bay, St John Web Cam
Peter Bay – Peter Bay Web Cam
Catherineberg  – Catherineberg Web Cam

>>> See Our Complete List of St John and Virgin Islands  Web Cameras!


Our list ( see below ) of the Most Popular St John USVI Web Cameras – including the St John Spice Cam at the Cruz Bay Ferry Dock and Estate Lindholm’s sunset cam!

There are lots of reasons to love or hate the technology-rich time we live in. We’ll save our disdain for cellphone obsessed texting teenagers for another post. What we want to focus on ( forgive the pun ) is the growing number of web cams on the island of St John in the US Virgin Islands.

>>> Click for a List of St John and Virgin Islands  Web Cameras!


SEE FOR YOURSELFWeb cams on St John in the US Virgin Islands

The most popular web cam is the St John Spice Cam. Ruth and Ron run one of St John’s most popular shops, St John Spice, located just outside the ferry dock. Their popular web cam has had 10s of millions of visitors since it was installed! That’s right over 20 million as of the writing of this article! The camera is pointed at the Cruz Bay Ferry and dinghy dock. It’s a great spot to watch visitors come and go AND to gauge the weather in Cruz Bay.

A reader wrote: This is my secret for escaping a long winter here in Connecticut – a quick “visit” to St John!

Know before you go … using St John’s web cams! Many people ask about the weather and our favorite answer includes … “Check out one or more of the web cams on the island”. Using web cams in Cruz Bay or Coral Bay and across the island it is possible to judge the weather and rate snorkeling and beach conditions on the North Shore vs East End or South Shore. For instance, using one of the East End web cams we can see what the snorkeling conditions are likely to be at Haulover North. Nothing else comes close to providing this level of up-to-the-minute information – short of driving out and seeing for yourself. So, before you load the family and beach and snorkeling gear into the rental Jeep …you can assess conditions around the island.

…judge the weather and rate snorkeling and beach conditions on the North Shore vs East End or South Shore

Daydreaming
A huge number of you have either visited St John and are “bitten by the bug” or want to visit. For you our list of web cams is a great diversion from a snowy day or tired work week! For just a moment you can check out Cruz Bay or sink into your chair and daydream with a view over Peter Bay or Coral Bay or just people watch the shoppers at Mongoose Junction. A couple of minutes is enough to recharge anybody! Think of it like a cup of coffee in the morning!

Virgin Islands Web Cams

My Eyes on the Island
Saint John weather low seasonEven if you live on St John these web cams can provide a great service. Just like the vacationer, residents can use this collection of cameras to survey the weather and/or choose a destination for a day in the sun and water. We use the East End and Coral Bay web cams to see what kind of weather is coming from the east ( the most frequent direction for weather affecting St John ). Combine the visual information with a quick look at our Wunderground doppler map and you can more accurately predict what type of day is ahead.

Bookmark the List
We hope you”ll find our list of St John web cams a valuable resource. If you do, don’t forget to bookmark it or add it to your Favorites. That way St John will never be more than a couple of clicks away. Enjoy!

Quick Reference Guide for saving a web page to Bookmarks or Favorites
Chrome / Firefox / IE / Opera or Safari: Ctrl-D

Snorkeling Waterlemon Cay on St John

Waterlemon Cay St John snorkeling


Waterlemon Cay and Leinster Bay panorama. Mouse-over scroll left and right!


Sea turtle at Maho Bay beach
About Waterlemon Cay
Waterlemon Cay is the  #1 “St John attraction” on Tripadvisor. It’s also one of the top spots to snorkel in the Caribbean! In general, the water is clear, the reef, corals and marine life are healthy and thriving. Colorful Caribbean tropical fish of all species are abundant! Waterlemon Cay should be on every snorkeler’s “bucket list”.

#1 Snorkeling Destination on St John!

Snorkeling among the rich diversity of corals and fish is the reason so many people choose to snorkel at Waterlemon Cay. Each year thousands of people make their way here in search of the best snorkeling on St John. And Waterlemon Cay is truly one of the best snorkeling  spots to see schools of fish, rays, turtles, star fish, conch as well as beautiful hard and soft coral reef formations. Access to the water is fairly easy via a sandy beach or a coral stone beach closest to Waterlemon Cay. This location is famous for the variety and density of sea life. You see lots of mustard hill coral, yellow and red sponges, huge purple sea fans, fire coral and large elkhorn. The variety of fish is equally as rich – with schools of blue Atlantic Tangs, parrotfish, blue runners, Sergeant Major Damsels and an assortment of colorful and inquisitive wrasses species. Leinster Bay and its sea grass beds are a great place to spot turtles, rays and Queen conch.

…the real draw is the panoramic view of Leinster Bay and the British Virgin Islands!

Ruins and Scenic Overlooks – so often overlooked ( forgive the pun) are the amazing ruins on the hill above Waterlemon Cay. Take a short spur trail and just a couple of hundred yards up the path are the Old Danish Guardhouse Ruins. A beautiful stone arch frames Leinster Bay. And a bit further up the trail is a destination not to be missed. The Windy Hill Ruins are an impressive collection of walls and stonework. But the real draw is the panoramic view of Leinster Bay all the way around to Tortola and the BVIs! Truly not to be missed. Check the above map for directions.

Waterlemon Cay, St John mapWhere is Waterlemon Cay?
[ see Google Map above ] From Cruz Bay – head west ( left as you face St John) up the hill on Rte 20 ( North Shore Road). You’ll follow the twisting road for about 5 mi – passing Caneel Bay Resort, Hawksnest, Jumbie, Trunk, Cinnamon and Maho Bay beach. After Maho the road turns to a single lane. Follow it until you come to a “Y” intersection. Bear right – signs for Annaberg and Leinster/Waterlemon Cay. There is a parking area about 500 yrds down on your right. The trail starts at the end of the road nearest the shoreline. The hike is flat and approx. .5mi / each way.

The short hike takes you along the shoreline of the beautiful aqua-blue waters of Leinster Bay. The best spot to enter the water is along the coral rubble shoreline – nearest the little island or Cay just off shore. Snorkel out to Waterlemon Cay and you’ll likely see lots of huge red and yellow cushion starfish.

A Word of Caution

CAUTION! - Depending on the weather, tides and moon phase – there can be a strong current on the western edge of the Cay. Use common sense and never exceed your abilities and always snorkel with someone.

St John’s Top Snorkeling Spots

Waterlemon Cay - by far the most popular snorkeling destination on Saint John
Henley Cay – our STAFF PICK for Best Snorkeling on St John
Haulover North – on the East End but well worth the drive!
Vie’s / Hansen Bay – East End. Wonderful beach and snorkeling
Honeymoon Beach – Watersports “shack” with SUP, kayak, snorkel gear, etc.
Salt Pond - Very good snorkeling on the rocky patch reef in the center of the bay.

Our complete list of St Johns Best Snorkeling Locations

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Donkey Diner Now The Indigo Grill

The Indigo Grill bar + restaurant, Coral Bay, St John, USVI

For all of you that ate there …loved it …and looked forward to visiting DD on your next visit to St John … our condolences. Donkey Diner, the venerable and ever popular Coral Bay eatery is no longer! The news that Donkey Diner was closing came as a shock to many. A listing on Craigslist USVI briefly offered the restaurant for sale. That posting no longer exists and the landlord has confirmed to us that the owners of Donkey Diner will not be reopening at this location.

Donkey Diner Coral Bay

Donkey Diner is Now The Indigo Grill!
The space previously held by Donkey Diner and Sputnik II is Coral Bay’s newest bar and restaurant! After months and months of renovation they’ve finally opened for business!

With plenty of covered outdoor seating, and outdoor bar, The Indigo Grill opened for business – ending a year or more of social media buzz about the fate of Donkey Diner. And although we’ll all have a special place in our hearts for Donkey Diner, the new Indigo Grill is a welcome addition to Coral Bay’s restaurant and bar scene.

So What’s It Like?
Hippster-casual, rustic, island, modern, and stylish! An eclectic conglomerate of styles that somehow seems to work. Outdoor dining and bar – because, hey, you’re in paradise! Enjoy the tropical breeze, people watch and enjoy a cold drink and some terrific food – sky overhead and palms rustling amid the sounds of the Coral Bay community.

The Indigo Grill Menu
The eclectic style extends to the menu. From the appetizer Hot & Nasty Nuts, $4 to Local Tini’s Fire Hot Sauce Wings and Tots to fresh Soups & Salads ( including local island favorite Josephine’s Greens), Pizza and hot sandwiches. We recommend the Indigo Grill Blue Cheese Pizza with Bacon. In the mood for a really creative sandwich? Try the Goat Cheese Meatball Sub, $10. Or a healthy, fresh Bacon Avocado Chicken Sandwich, $14, on toasted flatbread with spicy East End Aioli, red onion and a side of fries!

Pizza served 3pm – 6pm. After 6pm, full dinners.

Next time you’re visiting St John you’ll should give them a try!

Happy Hour is 2pm – 5pm every day!
$2 Presidente and Presidente Light
$3 Cruzan Drinks
$5 Patron Shots
…and more!

Not sure where their located?
When you get to ” the intersection” at the bottom of the road [ Rte 10 / Centerline Road ] leading into Coral Bay you’ll continue straight about 150 yards, just past the Moravian Church on your left and the ball field on your right.

Go on. Share it!

Spotlight on: STJ Creative

stj-creative-st-john
STJ Creative cameraDisclosure: We received compensation for this article and its timing. As a for-profit company in a niche travel location, we have local businesses that are also advertisers on our site. When we bring you items of interest, written by us, with editorial rights given to the featured advertiser you’ll see this disclosure. We do not receive commissions.

We spent the day with Anne of STJ Creative. Join us as we give you a behind-the-lens look at a-day-in-the-life of one of St John’s top photographers.

STJ Creative is the professional identity of Anne Bequette. A professional photographer for over 6 years – Anne moved to St John the first time in 2005, left to finish college in 2006, and returned in 2012 to launch STJ Creative, a life-long dream of hers. Since then she’s been using her creative eye to capture subjects with a modern mix of formal, candid, and photo-journalistic styles. Whether she’s shooting for a wedding, family portraits, commercial / real estate / or shooting an event – Anne manages to capture the beauty in every moment and convey it as a compelling image.

Anne’s day starts at 6am. A quick look at the day’s weather forecast and “flight check” of her equipment.



”I try to shoot during the magical times of the day: morning and dusk.” – Anne

Packing a dizzying array of photographic equipment into her black duffle, she’s off early to scout the location of her morning shoot. In this case – beach portraits for a family from Massachusetts visiting St. John on vacation. The location: world-famous Trunk Bay Beach on St John’s beautiful North Shore. Black volcanic rocks jut out over sugar-soft sand juxtaposed to the aquas and blues of the bay. The sun is just beginning to pull soft shadows. A quick survey of the light, shadows and natural forms, perfect! Anne is satisfied that the eastern end of Trunk will be ideal; and we head off to meet the family at the entrance.

STJ Creative photographer

The shoot combines her photographic skills with a honed ability to get the best from her subjects without inducing stress. We watched as she lead them through various poses; combining the natural forms and colors of St John with the characters and dress of a couple with two young girls. Between smile inducing humor and professional “tricks” for keeping people from blinking, Anne was pure professional. The shoot lasted just over an hour and a half – and culminated in some pictures that were decidedly fun and spontaneous.

“It’s amazing what can come out of these casual end-of-session images!” – Anne

Next stop Cruz Bay to shoot head shots for one of the busiest wedding planners on the island. The drive back to “town” was along St. John’s North Shore Road. We talk about Caneel Bay Resort and share a story or two about the crazy driving on these winding island roads. The commercial shoot shows off Anne’s wide range of specialties behind the lens. She slips into the creative, selecting props and lighting to bring the images to life. A few hours will pass as she wraps up her second shoot, and heads home to begin the post production process of all the images taken today. Just another day in paradise for those of us that live and work on this exquisite little rock!

To view the results of Anne’s morning shoot, as well as her portfolio, please visit her site at www.stjcreative.com.
Interested in having STJ Creative capture your special St. John memories?
Give Anne a call at 314.258.9120 or email her at anne@stjcreative.com

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