St. John, the smallest and most idyllic of the three U.S. Virgins Islands, is best known for its picture-perfect white sand beaches, turquoise bays filled with colorful corals and tropical fish, and endless vistas of green hills. Though only nine miles long and three miles wide, two-thirds of the island is part of the Virgin Islands National Park so the beaches and forests will remain flawless for generations to come. With 60% of its land area containing a pristine national park, St. John is as far away as you can get from civilization, but still offers the luxuries of life with upscale jewelry stores and boutiques. A visit to St. John is a must for those seeking true escape.
No matter how you desire to spend your time, this island offers incredible options to make even the decision enjoyable. With the natural beauty of the Caribbean, St. John offers honeymooners pure splendor amid modern luxuries. Originally settled by the Arawak and Carib Indians, the island has a rich history. In 1917, the United States purchased St. John from the Danish West India and Guinea Company, and in 1956, Rockefeller donated over 5,000 acres of land to the National Park Service. With so much of the land devoted to the national forest, St. John has some of the world's most beautiful beaches. For example, Trunk Bay is well known for its crystal sands and underwater nature trail, and with the array of nearby accommodations, visitors have their pick where to stay.
Known for its low-key luxury, unspoiled landscapes, scenic views and crystal clear waters, the island offers pristine retreats for nature lovers. Accommodations on the island have a knack for blending into the existing landscape. The variety of accommodations range from hotels to small inns, villas to campgrounds – whatever the budget, whatever the setting, St. John has you covered.
The main town of St. John is Cruz Bay, where ferries dock from St. Thomas. With shops, boutiques, grocery stores, a post office, schools, and so on, the town has you covered. Coral Bay, the second largest area, also offers visitors restaurants, grocery stores and other businesses.
The comfortable pace of St. John is perfect for enjoying the island's world-renowned beaches such as Trunk Bay and Cinnamon Bay. And as a nature lover's favorite, St. John offers hiking, camping, shopping and breathtaking views. Enjoy some of the best scuba and snuba (a combination of snorkeling and scuba) diving in the world, as well as eclectic shops and lively restaurants. This paradise is a honeymooners dream-come-true.
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The Best Parts of St. John
Tips & Advice
Tips & Advice+
Tips & Advice
- SIZE: The smallest of the USVI, St. John is 28 square miles
- AREA CODE: 709
- Currency: US Dollars
- PASSPORT: If you are a U.S. citizen, a passport is not required, but still serves as the best identification when traveling. Otherwise, you must be prepared to show evidence of citizenship when departing the islands, such as a birth certificate or government-issued photo ID. If you are not a U.S. citizen, a passport will be required.
- GETTING THERE: St. John does not have an airport so in order to get there you should fly into St. Thomas’ Cyril E. King Airport (STT). From here, grab a taxi out of Red Hook, St. Thomas. A ferry leaves around every hour from 6am – midnight. It is about a 30-minute drive from the airport. Travelers can also catch a ferry from Charlotte Amalie, which is only a 5-minute ride from the airport. Both ferries arrive in Cruz Bay.
- GETTING AROUND: Getting around the island is pretty easy. Cruz Bay, located on the west end of the island, is the major town – where ferry docks – and connects to most bays and beaches by well maintained roads, as well as to Coral Bay, the yacht harbor on the east end of the island. Taxis are pretty readily available. It is also possible to rent a car – but remember, they do drive on the left side of the road.
- WEATHER: The island enjoys temperatures in the low 70s and high 80s all year round, with higher precipitation during hurricane season (June-November).
- BANKS: The island has one full-service bank, plus a number of ATM machines.
- BEST TIME TO VISIT: The best time to visit is during the peak of winter from December through March. The weather tends to be warm, but not unbearable and the waters are refreshingly cool.
- WHAT TO WEAR: With the main activities based around the water, the island has a pretty casual atmosphere. Packing bathing suits, towels and sunscreen is essential. Shorts and t-shirts will get you through a honeymoon on the island. Planning a nice night out, include something dressy, but not too formal in your suitcase.
- EATING OUT: On the island, there are restaurants to suit every taste and budget – from elegant establishments to casual eateries. Some places may close for vacation in September, sometimes even into October.
- CELL PHONE SERVICE: AT&T, Sprint and Verizon all have coverage on St. John. Service is better in some locations over others throughout the island. However, make sure you contact your carrier before traveling to understand any additional fees or charges that may apply.
- HIT THE TRAILS: With nearly two-dozen trails, the island offers some of the perfect hiking spots. Spend the day becoming one with nature and the evening enjoying an unforgettable sunset in paradise.
- UNDER THE SEA: Explore St. Thomas’ amazing world underwater with a scuba diving adventure. Dive through shipwrecks and vibrant reefs and make memories with your favorite fishie.
- SHOP TILL YOU DROP: Need some souvenirs? Head to Cruz Bay to hit the shops. With two main areas, you will find great deals and unforgettable keepsakes.
- PAMPER YOUR SOUL: A honeymoon is about some rest and relaxation and St. John has some great spa spots for just that.
- BEACH DAY: St. John offers some of the best beaches the Caribbean has seen. On the famous North Shore you will find miles of award-winning national park beaches, each more enticing to the next and well-suited for honeymooners!
- RENT A VILLA: Though the island may be small, there is an abundant array of vacation villas across the island in all sizes, prices and locations. Rent one for your honeymoon and enjoy the comforts of home in your own personal villa.