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Virgin Gorda & Jost Van Dyke

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Fishkill, NY
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Virgin Gorda & Jost Van Dyke

Perhaps I should be posting on the VG & JVD forums but figured I start here first. We will be vacationing on St John for a week in May. Definitely want to visit both VG & JVD. Debating on ferries to both on separate days or going on a tour (considering Pirates Penny / Stormy Petral) and doing both on same day. Not much into

snorkeling. Other than The Baths is there anything else to do on VG? For JVD I'm thinking we would just go to to Soggy Dollar & maybe Foxys. Not sure if there's anything else to do on JVD other than bar hop? Any input is appreciated

CT
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1. Re: Virgin Gorda & Jost Van Dyke

I can not imagine spending 2 days off island if I was only on STJ for a week.

If you can do both on one trip, that would be my choice. You can explore the Baths and then head over to Soggy Dollar for a few adult beverages. For me, there is not much else to do on on either island. I am sure otherswill disagree but if you can do it all in one day, you will have more STJ beach time foe the rest of your trip!

Pennsylvania
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2. Re: Virgin Gorda & Jost Van Dyke

I agree with Tinke. There is so much to see on STJ, you aren't missing out on anything by not going on a day trip.

That being said, the Baths are something to see and if you think this might be your only trip to the VIs, make a point to go. It is about an hour and a half ride from STJ to VG.

We stayed on VG for ten days a couple of years ago.

VG is a very quiet island. The town, such as it is, is a short strip of road with commercial shops on either side. There is a marina and a few bars. Not much to do in town and it isn't a "fun" town like Cruz Bay on STJ. Taxis are easy to find. At the Baths, there is a restaurant/bar (maybe two as one is in limbo) at the top of the Baths and a small shop. There are beaches on either side of the Baths.

Jost is a small island and all the action is centered around White Bay and Foxy's.

Friends of ours were set on seeing the Baths in February and they were happy with their trip on Stormy Petral. The tour stopped at Cooper Island for lunch. They wanted to see as much as possible in a day and the tour provided it.

Smithfield, Rhode...
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3. Re: Virgin Gorda & Jost Van Dyke

After going to STJ several times we wanted to see The Baths on VG.

We went on Bad Kitty. I think it was about $125 per person, but don't quote me, just remember it wasn't that expensive.

You meet in town early, the crew gets everyone's passport info and your $$$, then head out to VG.

There are mimosas and bloody marys as well as muffins and breads. While going to VG they give everyone a menu for Cooper Island where we stopped for lunch. They pre-order your lunch so when you arrive it is almost ready to be served. You pay for your lunch on Cooper.

Our first stop was @ a place in VG where they had a few shops and rest rooms but only 1 or 2 of the shops were open, then we headed to The Baths. You have to swim onto shore from the boat which isn't far and they have noodles and crew members to assist you if you are not a strong swimmer. What I can say is The Baths were lovely but felt a little rushed, I would have enjoyed it more if I could have just sat and soaked and gone through them on my own terms, that said, it was still something we had wanted to see and glad we did, but next time will go on our own.

Left The Baths and headed to Cooper for lunch, then we went to Soggy Dollar for awhile, on the way back stopped, and folks who wanted to snorkel could jump off the boat and snorkel, this was about a 20 minute stop. I chose to stay on the boat cause I can swim, but not a strong swimmer and the reason I enjoy snorkeling on STJ is there are so many wonderful places in not too deep water to see turtles and gorgeous fish. Jumping into 20 feet of water is just not for me!

We had refreshments and cookies on the way back.

Nice tour, nice day, but did feel a little rushed overall.

We are a little spoiled cause our friends who live on island own a small boat and we've gone to Jost, Tortola, Norman and Cooper with them other years, this past summer we took a ride to Cane Garden Bay, it was so gorgeous and quiet, that's what we really enjoy, couple little bar/restaurants there.

Jost is fun @ Foxy's and Foxy is a character, but not much to do other than have a couple of painkillers, but I find getting there is half the beauty of it, the views and the water are so beautiful and the ride on the boat is so relaxing. We've also gone to Taboo which is on the other side of Jost, a little restaurant in the middle of nowhere! Stop @ Sandy Cay and Sandy Spit, tiny little islands with nothing more than a palm tree and powdery sand. You can rent an Ocean Runner in Cruz Bay with a Captain to go out for a day and you could see Cooper, Soggy Dollar, Jost, stop and eat, stop @ Spit & Cay etc., and incorporate a lot into one day, we've done that before as well and then you go where you want and spend whatever time you want there, just have to be back by 5PM if I remember correctly, think it was 9-5 and about $500 for the day, but there were 6 of us so it was a good deal. Then tip for the Captain and we bought him lunch, but that was awhile ago, so not sure what it costs now.

If it's your first time on STJ, I wouldn't spend two days off island. We always incorporate one day for boat trip, but after that we just relax, I love having no schedule when I vacation!

Enjoy!

Tulsa, Oklahoma
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4. Re: Virgin Gorda & Jost Van Dyke

We have done VG by excursion/charter and ferry. The ferry is the only way to go in my opinion and it costs half as much. You just don't get enough time at the Baths on an excursion/charter. I would do JVD via excrusion/charter since you only need a few hours there any way, which is all you get. All day via ferry might be time wasted as there really isn't much to do there but partake in the spirits and hangout.

Mike in Tulsa

Edited: 11 October 2013, 15:42
Hoboken
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5. Re: Virgin Gorda & Jost Van Dyke

Agree with replies, including. Sandy358. I would also hit the Indians, which are rock formations in the middle of the ocean near all, that are terrific for snorkeling. Used left over lunch from Foxxys for fish food. Mention to Foxxys that you are from NJ - he'll sing you a NJ song.

Another fantastic snorkeling spot in sandy spit, near Foxxys - small spit of an island with white sand and a few palm trees - purportedly where the Corona beer commercials were shot.

But hit All BVI in one day. Depends on tides and currents.

Hoboken
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6. Re: Virgin Gorda & Jost Van Dyke

Agree with replies, including. Sandy358. I would also hit the Indians, which are rock formations in the middle of the ocean near all, that are terrific for snorkeling. Used left over lunch from Foxxys for fish food. Mention to Foxxys that you are from NJ - he'll sing you a NJ song.

Another fantastic spot is sandy spit, small island white sand.

But hit All BVI in one day. Depends on currents and tides.

I would also rent a car on st Thomas, hit the supermarket there, and take the car ferry from sandy hook - save money and more convenient. Starfish market is SJ can fill in any needs.

Tomball, Texas
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7. Re: Virgin Gorda & Jost Van Dyke

>>Another fantastic snorkeling spot in sandy spit, near Foxxys - small spit of an island with white sand and a few palm trees - purportedly where the Corona beer commercials were shot.<<

Interesting. I had always heard they were filmed in Akumel, Mexico.

I am starting to become less enchanted with taking any time to see either JVD or Virgin Gorda. We only have four full days, and none of us have been to STJ before.

What is so special about Soggy Dollar, versus, say, The Beach Bar? Do you even have that much time to walk the beach and see the bars around Soggy Dollar, on a full day sail?

Seattle, Washington
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8. Re: Virgin Gorda & Jost Van Dyke

I think I second (or third) to resist the urge to leave STJ if you only have 7 days. But I think The Indians is the most magical place I have ever snorkeled (and we have snorkeled A LOT of places). I'm not a huge fan of the JVD day trip.... But Cooper Island for lunch is fun since you can incorporate The Indians on that trip. I love VG but one day for the Baths is not worth the $$$. I've done it but wouldn't recommend it. We have spent several nights on VG and it is well worth it but one day is a long and expensive day.

Edited: 07 November 2013, 22:31
Tomball, Texas
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9. Re: Virgin Gorda & Jost Van Dyke

We've decided not to take a day sail, and just be happy with a sunset sail instead.

Pia
St John, VI
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10. Re: Virgin Gorda & Jost Van Dyke

Bad Kitty - $150 per person, $40 per person customs - no alcohol until after the snorkel stop which is after lunch therefore alcohol is available (free) from the snorkel stop to Jost and from Jost to St John

Pia