Best St. Thomas Tourist Attractions
When it comes to sightseeing, the United States Virgin Islands has a lot more to offer than just sugary soft sandy beaches, clear, warm waters and stunning views that make your head spin. St. Thomas has an array of totally unique and interesting destinations and attractions that you won’t soon forget.
Paradise Point Tramway
Definitely one of the best St. Thomas tourist attractions, this tramway is not for the faint of heart! You’ll ride a cable car up the side of a steep hill (read: mountain!) in the heart of Charlotte Amalie. If you can get past the swaying cable car (and you should!), the views will take your breath away and are truly the best on the island. You go up about 700 feet in about 5 minutes, and when you get to the top, you’ll find an open air bar and cafe with a fun happy hour and live music. Locals come here to dance the sun into the sea, and of course, there’s a gift shop! It’s a great place to watch the sun slip into the Caribbean sea. Look for the green flash!
Top of the Mountain
It’s a bar…it’s a giftshop…it’s got a 2 story tall Cruzan rum bottle as its centerpiece..but that’s not what’s amazing about Top of The Mountain. Truly, its the stellar view. Different from Paradise Point that overlooks the Charlotte Amalie Harbor, Top of the Mountain offers views of Magen’s Bay, St. John and surrounding islands that are the stuff of postcards. Rumor has it that this is where the banana daiquiri was invented, so of course, you’ll be expected to have one…even at 9am. Half the fun is the trip here–up, up, up 1,500 feet of twisty roads overlooking the world’s most beautiful islands. On second thought…be careful with those daiquiris!
This location is rumored to be where Sir Francis Drake would watch for enemy ships to enter the harbor. From this location, you’ve got panoramic views of where the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea meet. In addition to a great history and amazing views, there’s usually some colorful characters on hand to give you the island flair. This is a great stop on your way to Magen’s Bay.
There’s actually 103 steps, so we think they were counted after happy hour, but they are called the 99 steps, and you shouldn’t miss them. These historical steps were built from the ballast bricks of the tall ships coming in from Europe, and they truly make you feel like you’re back in the days of the pirates. It’s a climb that will test your fitness level, and we recommend that you start at the bottom and climb up so you end up at BlackBeard’s Castle. People stop to rest up and down them, so go easy. At about the 65th step, you’ll find a local art gallery featuring local Caribbean artists. Great excuse to stop, and one of the best St.Thomas tourist attractions for sure!
Coral World Ocean Park
Coral World Ocean Park, at Coki Point Beach in St. Thomas, is a unique marine park showcasing the richness of Caribbean ocean life. Among the wide range of attractions is a three-story observation tower located in the middle of a living, breathing coral reef that’s about 100 feet offshore. The walk towards the tower is across a foot bridge with a clear view of the colonies of corals, an array of fish and other sea life, right below your feet.
The tower’s top level offers a breathtaking panoramic view of the surrounding islands and cays. At the middle level, there’s a huge circular tank filled with deep sea predators, like sharks, moray eels, sting rays, and barracudas. The tower’s base is an underwater observatory with a 360-degree glass enclosed viewing area that gives you an idea of the life in and around an active coral reef–without getting you wet! It’s pretty cool.
The Atlantis Submarine and Harbor Cruise
Atlantis Submarine offers the world’s first fleets of submarines that cater to tourists and guests. The expedition begins with a 20-minute scenic boat ride from St. Thomas to Turtle Cove, where guests are transferred to the high-tech Atlantis-15 submarine. This underwater adventure includes a ride through a canyon area called Snapper Valley. You’ll see a giant array of sea life like brain corals, stag horn and pillar corals, tropical fish and perhaps even a ray, dolphin, whale or shark.
So, there’s just a few of the amazing things you shouldn’t miss when visiting our islands! There’s a lot good to be said for the best St. Thomas Tourist Attractions!