You’ve been lying on the beach, soaking up the sun and sipping pina coladas all week long…but that warm blue water calls! You’ve seen boats cruising in and out of the harbor, watched the paddle boarders float by and seen the para sailers overhead. You’re ready to get out of the hammock and into the water. What should you do first?
Well, there’s lots of choices, depending, of course, of your level of “dare devil.” From easy to extreme, there’s something for everyone.
Arguably, the easiest but most exciting water sport in the Virgin Islands is snorkeling.
The Virgin Islands is known to have the most beautiful and accessible snorkeling in the Caribbean. You can swim right from the beach into shallow waters and immediately be met with a reef full of colorful fish, corals, turtles and rays. The currents are usually gentle, and you’ll have great visibility all day long. If you choose to take a day boat charter on Red Beard or Black Beard, you’ll see even more–sometimes even dolphin, whale and shipwrecks!
Requiring more skill is scuba diving, but there’s nowhere better on earth to try it than in the Travel Guide”>Virgin Islands. There are dozens of dive sites in the islands that are within a fifteen minute boat ride of each other. Shallow coral garden and fringing coral reefs are adorned with a variety hard and soft corals, sea fans and sponges. Wild life is abundant with an array of tropical fishes, rays, turtles and even sharks.
Paddle boarding is a great way to get some exercise while sightseeing. It’s huge in the Virgin Islands, and there are even paddleboarding pilates and yoga classes. Known as SUP (short for stand up), paddle boarding is a combination of surfing and canoeing. Boards can be rented just about anywhere, and the wider the board, the more stable you are. You stand on the board and paddle to propel yourself through these stunning blue waters. It’s quite a workout!
To really change your point of view, consider parasailing. You’ll launch from the back of a boat where the gentle winds lift your parachute above the water about 600 feet. You’re suspended comfortably in a harness, and when the winds are calm, the ride is easy and quiet. You’ll be amazed at what you can see from such heights!
Finally, the one thing you should do without question is a day boat charter that takes you to a few of the many nearby islands, beach bars, and great snorkeling sites that the Virgin Islands offers. To visit the Virgin Islands and not see other islands should be illegal. You can’t get the whole experience until you island hop! There are many options for day boat charters. You can choose a day boat charter that takes 50-70 people to pre-determined snorkel spots and beach bars. You can rent a private day boat charter and choose your own destinations with the help of your captain. or you can rent a “bareboat” where you’re the captain–but beware–these waters are full of coral reefs and the customs enforcement doesn’t take inexperience as an excuse to be in British or U.S. waters without proper customs clearance.
Because boat traffic in the Virgin Islands can parallel rush hour in any U.S. city, jet skiing is not allowed in many places. In the few places that you can jet ski, it’s usually a guided tour in a protected bay. We recommend that you try one of the other, unusual water activities in the Virgin Islands.
You’ll never run out of exciting things to do and places to see in the Virgin Islands. From easy to extreme, the Virgin Islands offers great water sports options for everyone!
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