Need a 4 X 4 to access beaches?

Aug 14th, 2005, 08:33 AM
Original Poster
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Need a 4 X 4 to access beaches?

Do you need a four wheel drive to access the beaches in the west and north ends of Beef Island? Or will a compact car do? We will only be there one day. Is it easy to beach hop and get from one beach to another or are the roads difficult to navigate?
jagger is offline  
Aug 14th, 2005, 01:16 PM
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If you are looking at beaches on Beef Island I assume you're talking about Trellis Bay, Long Bay (east) and Well Bay. All of these are very accessible by a compact car as they are on the flat and you don't have to climb steep hills to reach them. Most other beaches on Tortola would be fine too but it depends on your level of comfort driving steep hills without 4x4, especially if the roads are wet. On the whole, if you are a confident driver, you will not have a problem accessing all beaches on Tortola. Just drive carefully and take it slow on sharp bends and hills. I find a 4x4 gives me a bit more confidence.
Moglet is offline  
Aug 15th, 2005, 08:36 AM
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If you are driving around on Tortola, I'd suggest you get a 4 wheel drive anyway. It is a mountainous island and very beautiful. Some of the roads are very steep and challenging. Many 4 wheel vehicles are on the compact side anyway. It won't cost you much more and it's really worth it for the ability to go anywere, nevermind getting to a beach.
Tuxedocat is offline  
Aug 15th, 2005, 09:38 AM
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Thank you for the information!
jagger is offline  
Aug 15th, 2005, 10:19 AM
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One more question. Can you please clarify? Are the roads paved or unpaved? Paved steep roads are one thing but I can see that unpaved steep roads are another. Thanks!
jagger is offline  
Aug 15th, 2005, 10:31 AM
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Just about all of the roads on Tortola and Beef island are paved. You'll find a few seconday roads unpaved.
A_Traveller is offline  
Aug 15th, 2005, 10:48 AM
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Some secondary roads to access hilltop villas are unpaved. All main roads are paved.
mnag is offline  
Aug 15th, 2005, 12:43 PM
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Steep, paved or not is not like steep in mainland USA. Some places are so steep you don't understand how people walk up it nevermind drive up it. I still encourage you to consider getting the 4 wheel drive. Although, I do enjoy the white-knuckled-eyes-as-big-as-saucers look on the tourists.
Tuxedocat is offline  
Aug 15th, 2005, 01:21 PM
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Just curious: for those of you who've rented 4X4's on the islands: Have you ever actually used the 4X4 feature, or is it just the higher vehicle clearance that you are trying to get? We've rented them on many potholed islands, including Tortola, St. Lucia, St. Vincent, etc. We've never had to actually use the 4X4 feature, but the high clearance over those potholes really makes a difference!
joan is offline  
Aug 15th, 2005, 03:17 PM
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We frequently use our 4 wheel drive on Tortola and St. John terrain. Whoever did the roads on those islands seem to think it's perfectly okay to drive up a turn that's close to 60 degrees. Jacob's Ladder in St. John when it's rained, is nearly impossible to get up without 4 wheel drive and just about as hair raising trying to drive down. And that's not an uncommon type of road. Sure you can screech your way around in a regular car, but as you mentioned, the higher clearance is terrific for potholes or unpaved roads.
Tuxedocat is offline  
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