Though it's the largest of the U.S. Virgin Islands,
a St. Croix vacation is a exercise in solitude. For years,
the island has competed with the more popular St. Thomas as a tourist destination. And for years, it
has lost. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing, unless
you are a merchant trying to make your living on St. Croix.
The tranquility of the island is palpable, and you are
free to swim and dive St. Croix with little worry about
having to fight crowds that have become all too common
in the Caribbean.
Whether you want to relax, do some fishing or go on a
deep sea dive St. Croix can be a wonderful addition to
any travel itinerary.
St. Croix Virgin Islands is based mainly around its
two major cities, Frederiksted and Christiansted. There
is very little to do in the former city: mainly a port
for cruise ships, the town itself is centered around a
small fort that displays a small array of memorabilia
from when it was in use. The rest of the city is utilitarian
sprawl, with little to offer the casual visitor. Many
a St. Croix hotel has
risen up here, only to find visitor interest to be severely
lacking. What this overlooked city does provide, however,
is a good base to access the largest beach in the entire
United States Virgin Islands - the aptly named Sandy
Point, a few miles south of Frederiksted. White sand
and prime spots for snorkeling and swimming greet each
new visitor, and it also one of the most popular places
for St. Croix fishing. For those with a taste for the
region"s famous pirate elixir, the Cruzan
Rum factory is nearby, offering daily guided tours.
Things are different on the other side of the island.
On the northeastern coast lies one of the crown jewels
of the entire Caribbean, and the epicenter of any St.
Croix vacation - the charming city of Christiansted.
Here you can stay at the finest St. Croix hotel, gamble
at the finest St. Croix casino and travel just a few miles
to the Salt River Bay National Historical park or the
Visiting Buck Island Reef National monument. The latter
even has an underwater nature trail, and is serviced by
the popular Dive St. Croix agency, the leading provider
of scuba and snorkeling tours
on the island. Though beaches are the biggest draw of any St. Croix vacation, many are
taxing to get to, which is why the nearby Cormorant Beach
Club and Tamarind Reef Beach are so popular - shuttles
can be taken from most every St. Croix hotel in the area.
Top image: jskybe (flickr)