My husband and I spent a slightly delayed honeymoon (we were married in May last year) in St. Croix, in the US Virgin Islands. For seven days and nights we enjoyed warm weather in the low 80's, and could see the beach from our room.
If you have been thinking about a getaway vacation to a tropical island, I would recomend St. Croix. It was my first time there, but I met some friendly and wonderful people, and saw some breathtaking sights. The first full day we were there, we hiked to the tide pools from a trail by our resort. Actually, we ended up taking the long hike, putting a mile and a half on our trip to the pools. We also took the steep trail down to the road, which leads to the rocks. I'm not trying to brag here, mind you. I'm not usually a hiker but I'm active and do enjoy nature. This was intense. Either you're sliding down this thing on your behind, or you're walking slowly down backwards, grabbing clumps of tall grass. We made it down, and it was all worth it. After a careful walk along sharp rocks, with waves crashing over our feet, we made it to the tide pools. It was something like a scene out of The Princess Bride.
We were so enamored with this little piece of paradise that we had to go back. On the last full day of our stay, we hiked out again. This time taking the short trail and a path with a less steep slope. We stayed hours, enjoying the warm water and chasing around the fishes. I even got a couple decent pictures with my lil camera, which I put in an underwater aquapac bag.
On the way back we saw the most breathtaking full rainbow, it was coming right up out of the water...I felt like I was in a care bears movie!
When we weren't lounging on the beach, we were exploring the island. We had a very pleasant walk through the St. George Botanical Gardens. They had some interesting plants and trees, some looking like something right out of a Dr. Seuss book.
Sugar mill ruins were scattered throughout the islands, we got to check out some overlooking the north shore. Quite a view indeed.
By night we got to check out some great live music, because the Ryan Montbleau Band was in town. They rocked the island for a full week, and I saw many of the same faces night after night. I met some very friendly people, and had lots of space to hula hoop most nights. One show was on the beach at sunset, and that was just incredible.
Overall, my husband and I had the time of our lives. I'd love to share some tips based on things we experienced on this trip.
1. Rent a car. Taxi's are expensive on the island and unless you're going to spend the entire week on the beach, you'll spend what you would have spend on a rented car anyway.
That brings me to
2. Do not use Centerline car rentals. We had a very bad experience with them. Because they do not accept visa cards with the word "debit" written on them, they left us high and dry at the airport. But they still managed to charge $500 to my husbands debit card (go figure) forcing us back to reality during our honeymoon, as we had to call the bank and deal with all THAT while on vacation. Fabulous.
We were able to get a last minute car through AVIS and dealt with a very nice lady, Ingrid.
3. Breakfast is a hot commodity on the island. The Colupmbus Cove Restaurant on the north shore is awful. If you like cold breakfast with a scowl, this is the place for you. Another restaurant on the north shore, Spratnet, was fantastic, but out of the 3 times we drove there, they were only open once (even though their sign says "7 days a week, open 7am").
4. If you are physically able, check out the tide pools by the carambola beach resort. Wear keens or other waterproof shoes with a solid sole, and pack water and some snacks.
5. The tide by the Carambola gets rough. Be careful, especially if you plan on bringing children.
6. In Christiansted, visit Lolita Restaurant. It is a health food bar with a raw/microbiotic selection of food. I have to admit I was a little skeptical but it was fantastic! All fresh ingredients. The soup was so tasty, and the raw "lasagna" was out of this world, prepared right in front of you by a lovely english gentlemen, Jonathon. The ambiance incredible as well, lit just enough, with a dolphin fountain in the center surrounded by exotic plants.
6. Take lots of pictures!
Now that I'm back to reality I'll be getting back to my regular droppers on entrecard, and should have some beady goodness to share with you soon!