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danandmelissa Apr 23rd, 2005 03:14 PM

St. John Trip Report
My husband and I just returned from a 6 day trip to St. John and wanted to give something back to this forum that helped us so much with our planning!

We stayed at Garden By the Sea, a bed and breakfast located near Cruz Bay. There was a little path that allowed you to walk to town within five minutes (with one strenuous hill near Gallows Point). The owners of the b&b were super, they were available to answer all of our questions about the area. The b&b also recently added air conditioners to the rooms which really helped since it was hot at night, even with the ceiling fans.

We rented a car from Courtesy Car Rental, which worked out well and having a 4wd drive vehicle definitely helped us get around the island. Two couples that were also staying at the B&B did not rent cars and had some trouble getting around to the other side of the island (such as the East and South beaches).

We love to snorkel and did so all over the island (for us, relaxing = exploring!!). The best snorkel spots in our opinion were Waterlemon Beach/Caye (you do need to hike about 1 mi. to get to it), Haulover Bay North(this was definitely the best, we had a very calm day, excellent coral and a lot of fish), and Salt Pond Bay (saw several turtles and rays). Princess Bay was very interesting with the mangrove snorkeling. WEAR A LOT OF SUNSCREEN AND TAKE A HAT!! The sun is VERY hot, and you don't realize it if you are snorkeling for a while.

Other enjoyable beaches: Trunk Bay (go early or late because there will be less people), Salomon Beach (there's a little bit of a hike involved).

We also went on a boat trip to BVI on the New Horizons II. This was a GREAT trip. The Baths were beautiful, and all of the stops during the trip to snorkel, eat, and drink were very good. Definitely would recommend this trip, but book early because they don't take too many people on this boat. We booked it through

Restaurants that we loved for dinner: Chateau Bordeaux (great food, service, and views), The Fish Trap, The Lime Inn, Margarita Phils

Good lunch places: Skinny Legs (being from Boston, we loved all the NE Patriots and Red Sox memorabilia), Uncle Joe's BBQ

We also went to Duffy's Love Shack, the Beach Bar, and Rhumb Lines for drinks and all were enjoyable. Didn't get to Woodys, unfortunately.

We are already looking into planning another trip for next year in June, but this time will be looking into villas to have a place all to ourselves (and a small pool to cool off in). We think the perfect location seems to be between Cruz and Coral Bay because we enjoyed both so much (such as Ajax Peak or Bordeaux Mountain). Any suggestions for villas would be appreciated!!

Feel free to ask any questions.

Dan and Melissa

christiegr Apr 23rd, 2005 06:38 PM

Thanks for the great trip report.

My family and I are going in June.It will be our first visit.We will be staying at a villa on Gifft Hill and it looks to be a good location.We rented it from will do a trip report and let you know how the villa was.It is the Bamboo villa on their website.

Do you find the 70 foot waterfall? We have the book "Off The Beaten Track" and found it in there.

Take care,Christie

RobertoB Apr 24th, 2005 03:37 AM


Your report should prove to be an excellent source for someone planning a trip to St. John. Very informative and concise.

You covered an area that I found very interesting while on St. John, the Princess Bay mangrove snorkel. It's a marine world in minature. We also became big fans of Haulover North.

For a place to stay in the Ajax Mountain/Bordaux area, take a look at Creolla. There's a fair number of rentals in that area depending on your budget.

jofus Apr 24th, 2005 06:34 AM

Check out Happy Moon villa for your next trip. I stayed there this past FEb. Great location right near the intersection of North shore rd. and Centerline Rd. It's affordable, 2 bedroom with a small pool and almost all paved road to the villa. Fantastic views and private. If you click on my name you should find the trip reports I did in early March.

danandmelissa Apr 24th, 2005 10:46 AM

Thank you all for the responses!! Christie, we did not look for the waterfall because we couldn't tear ourselves away from the snorkeling!! We were told that St. John is having a drought right now (it only rained once when we were there, at night) and everything was pretty dry, not as green as we heard it normally is. Not sure if that would affect the waterfall or not. Have a great trip--we can't wait to get back.

mamd Apr 25th, 2005 05:58 PM

I am enjoying reading all of this... I went to St. John for the first time this past Thanksgiving. We rented a villa on the east/south-east end of the island, past Salt Pond Bay. Very remote (a bit of a drive) but no other houses in site was worth it! A must for eating: Miss Lucy's! The people were great and the food amazing. We ate there the first night, and should have just kept going back all week! Great location right on the water, located just outside of Coral Bay, as you head towards Salt Pond Bay.

I'm jealous of all of you who are going back soon - have a great time!


iamq Apr 26th, 2005 05:23 AM

Thanks for the report. I am going to St. John for the first time next summer. I love to snorkel too and I can't wait.

Was Sea Spirit the house you stayed at? We ar thinking of staying there.


tess53 Jun 22nd, 2005 04:44 PM

Melissa.. info for your next trip..Orchid Knoll Villa/Bordeaux Mountain..great villa/private/pool and stunning view !!,check out their site,if not this one there are many more to choose from, in all price ranges,locations and sizes.

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