Where can you experience 3,000 years’ worth of human history and be in paradise? At Virgin Islands National Park in St. John, Virgin Islands, you’ll discover much more than just pretty beaches. You can hike to the ruins of plantations and learn about when the island was dominated by sugar. You can visit the lands of the ancient Taino Indians and touch the petroglyphs they carved by hand. You can even snorkel along the coral reefs, discovering hiding marine creatures.
Nearly 70% of St. John is part of this national park. It’s one of the most unique destinations and calls nature lovers from all over the world.
Hiking at Virgin Islands National Park in St. John
One of the more popular St. John activities is hiking. There are several trails throughout Virgin Islands National Park that cater to various skill levels. There are also boardwalks for easy accessibility to the many ruins throughout or just to birdwatch. If you’re an adventurous spirit, hike the Reef Bay Trail and check out the ancient petroglyphs and then on to an old sugar mill next to a beautiful beach. It’s important to know there are certain toxic plants on the island.
Petroglyphs at Virgin Islands National Park in St. John
Of all the park offers, the petroglyphs are perhaps the most notorious. Visitors to St. John’s Reef Bay Valley love exploring the deep interior of this island. It is here that the ancient stone petroglyphs are found. As long-lost clues left by a lost culture of St. John, these petroglyphs are found at the base of the highest waterfall in the valley. Mysterious faces are carved into the blue rock and are perfectly reflected into the pool at the base of the falls.
Snorkeling at Virgin Islands National Park in St. John
Over 40% of Virgin Islands National Park is underwater. There are ample and diverse opportunities for snorkeling and swimming. You can view this guide which describes a variety of potential snorkeling areas and determine what is best for your interests and expertise.
Visitor Center at Virgin Islands National Park in St. John
You’ll also find Trunk Bay and Cinnamon Bay tucked around St. John. You can find more information within the park’s Visitor Center which is open every day from 8:30 to 4:30. While you’re there, check out the Visitor Center’s bookstore. Always call ahead to assure availability. The park itself is open 24 hours a day.
Trunk Bay’s facilities are open daily from 8 am to 4 pm but be aware there are no lifeguards. There is a small snack and souvenir shop open daily from 10 am to 4 pm. Cinnamon Bay’s campground is currently closed. Visit the website for up-to-date information.
You can find information to help you plan your visit to Virgin Islands National Park in St. John, Virgin Islands here.
*As with all proper vacation planning, be sure to call your destination before you visit to assure hours and availability*