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St. John Travel Guide

  • Photo: Sasha Buzko / Shutterstock
  • Photo: Steve Heap / Shutterstock

Plan Your St. John Vacation

St. John's heart is Virgin Islands National Park, a treasure that takes up a full two-thirds of St. John's 20 square miles (53 square km). The park helps keep the island's interior in its pristine and undisturbed state, but if you go at midday, you'll probably have to share your stretch of beach with others, particularly at Trunk Bay.

The island is booming (its population of 5,000

is joined by more than 800,000 visitors each year), and it can get crowded at the ever-popular Trunk Bay Beach during the busy winter season; parking woes plague the island's main town of Cruz Bay, but you won't find traffic jams or pollution. It's easy to escape from the fray, however: just head off on a hike or go early or late to the beach. The sun won't be as strong, and you may have that perfect crescent of white sand all to yourself.

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Updated 1/20/2014

Top Reasons To Go

  1. Beach-hopping Fill your cooler with cold drinks, grab the snorkeling gear, and stash your beach chair in the back of your car for a day at the beaches along St. John's North Shore Road.
  2. Hiking Reef Bay Opt for a trip with a ranger in Virgin Islands National Park. A safari bus takes you to the trailhead, and a boat brings you back.
  3. Snorkeling at Trunk Bay Trunk Bay is St. John's most popular snorkeling spot, and for good reason. The famed snorkeling trail is a good way to learn about the undersea life that surrounds the island.
  4. Relaxing in a villa There are about 500 vacation villas and condos across the island, so it's no surprise that this is a popular way to visit St. John. Villas come in all sizes, prices, and locations, and most give you all the comforts of home.
  5. Exploring Cruz Bay Spend half a day poking around Cruz Bay's varied stores, shopping for that perfect gift for the folks back home.

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