St. Thomas, USVI holds a special place in my heart. It was one of my most memorable family vacations, the first place I traveled without my parents, and then where I spent my honeymoon.
It holds the perfect combination of relaxation and adventure and is an amazing, underrated spot for a couple’s getaway. Combine that with the ease of getting there from anywhere in the south or along the east coast of the US and it’s by far one of my favorite vacation destinations.
Sound like the perfect spot to you too?
Well keep reading for all my general tips, everything you need to know about visiting, and a one week itinerary.
General Tips for Visiting St. Thomas, USVI
- St. Thomas is a US Territory, so you do not need a passport (though it may come in handy, more on that later) and US currency is used.
- The drive on the opposite side of the road but the steering wheel is still on the left side of the car.
- Many places on the island are still recovering from back-to-back Hurricanes Irma & Maria. Some were severely damaged and still not open as of May 2020. Others are still rebuilding so please check each website for current data.
- I have personally never felt unsafe on the island. However, I do not go into Charlotte Amalie at night and I am always with another person when I go out at the resort or anywhere else on the island.
- St. John is easily accessible by ferry and you can visit St. Croix by a short plane ride.
- If you choose not to rent a car then bring plenty of cash for taxis. There is no ride-share service like Uber or Lyft.
- Need more help planning this vacation? Check out my article all about planning your dream vacation.
St. Thomas Resorts
Wyndham Margaritaville St. Thomas – Wyndham certainly did not disappoint with this property. My parents are Wyndham Timeshare owners so we have been to many of the resorts in the southeast and I do believe this one tops them all in my experience.
The fun Caribbean atmosphere, friendly staff, and amenities truly set it apart. The Margaritaville Restaurant on-site should not be missed and there is a reasonable convenience store with a deli in case you forgot anything from home or need a quick bite.
The two pools and a private beach offer many places to relax. My favorite being the hillside pool with a swim-up bar. Each room has its own margarita machine so buy the supplies and have an afternoon of bottomless margs from your own balcony.
Sapphire Beach Resort – Located on the beautiful Sapphire Beach equipped with a water sports center, Sapphire Beach Resort has it all. The beach is a destination in itself while the gorgeous pool is for guests only.
The adjacent marina offers most any excursion you can think of and if you can’t find what you’re looking for there then book one out of Red Hook that’s less than a mile away. Red Hook also offers shopping and many dining options.
Marriott’s Frenchman’s Cove – This charming resort will make you wonder if you’re in a quaint Italian seaside village instead of the Caribbean. The resort is conveniently located near Charlotte Amalie, the capital of St. Thomas.
The poolside restaurant has a gorgeous view of the ocean and there are chairs available on the beach for lounging. Frenchman’s Cove also has a small marina where sunset cruises set sail. Check with the concierge for other offerings.
When To Travel to St. Thomas, USVI
The peak season for travel in St. Thomas is December to March when the weather is absolutely perfect for all of us sun-lovers. 70s-80s with a mild breeze. The shoulder season of April to June is my favorite time to visit as you should still have great weather with less crowds.
Hurricane season is from June to September and can last into October. The last few seasons have not been good to the islands. Planning a trip during these times could be a gamble. But hey, we’re in the middle of a Pandemic right now, crazy things happen all the time.
One Week Itinerary for St. Thomas
This itinerary follows exactly how my husband and I spent our honeymoon in St. Thomas, USVI because it honestly could not have been more perfect. Just a note, this itinerary does not include travel days.
Jump into island life full-force and take a British Virgin Islands day trip. Two companies that I have gone with are New Horizons & Breakaway Charters and Stormy Pirates. I would highly recommend either company.
You will have to bring your passport if you want to go on this excursion.
Before you leave out of the marina in Red Hook, stop by Lattes in Paradise and grab a breakfast sandwich and morning brew. I loved it so much we went back again for breakfast later in the week.
As soon as you get on the boat the captain or first mate will go over safety precautions and then offer you a drink. One captain told us drinking before noon doesn’t make you an alcoholic, it makes you a pirate (lol).
The first stop on the trip is Baths National Park in Virgin Gorda. Here you’ll find beautiful views on a hike down to the beach with incredible rock formations surrounding you on your way down.
Once you make it to the beach there’s a little bar and you get to spend about half an hour here enjoying the view and wading in the ocean among the towering boulders.
A taxi will take you back to your boat and then depending on what trip you take you could either be headed to Pusser’s for lunch or to White Bay on Jost Van Dyke. If you go to Pusser’s you’ll also get to snorkel for a bit after lunch then head to White Bay.
White Bay is known for the Soggy Dollar Bar which is named because your dollars may literally be soggy.
There are no docks at the bay so the boats anchor near the beach and you have to swim to land. Most captains will hand around a dry bag so you don’t have to jump in with your wallet in your pocket unless you want the full experience.
If you want to know more about what to do at White Bay see my article about some of my favorite things to do in St. Thomas, USVI.
On the way back to Red Hook you do have to stop at Cruz Bay in St. John to go through Customs. It’s a very simple process.
We were so tired once we got back that we went to our room and crashed. If you feel like going out though, head to Island Time Pub in Red Hook for a lively atmosphere, a beautiful view, and great food.
Today is much more relaxing and laid back. First head to Coral World Ocean Park. On the way there grab a smoothie for breakfast from Martha’s Smoothies at Coki Beach (right next to Coral World).
Coral World is perfect for any animal lover. It’s like a small zoo or aquarium and the main attraction (in my opinion) is an underwater observatory where you can watch animals swim by out in the open channel.
Something I enjoyed that I wasn’t expecting were the presentations with the animals made by the staff. We saw a show with a sea lion, sea turtle feeding, and an interactive presentation at the touch pool. If you can’t tell, I’m very much a kid at heart.
After you’ve had your fill of animal education you can head right next door to Coki Beach. It is a 2-minute walk (if that) and you’ll pass a stand selling snorkels and flippers. They rent for a reasonable price (around $10) and the staff will give you a dog bone to feed the fish.
You can also rent chairs on the beach to place your things and waiters will come around and take your drink order from the beach bars. Though it may not look like much, be sure to order fish from the place with a wooden bar where you can sit. If you like seafood you won’t be disappointed.
While you are snorkeling be sure to keep your chairs in view. I’ve never had anything stolen but you never know.
A tip for the dog bones: do not – I repeat – do not put them in the water until you are ready to feed the fish. Better yet, toss them a little ways from you. If you hold them in your hand and lower them into the water, the fish will attack it. Then you’ll be embarrassingly squealing as you try to get away from the swarm. Not that I’m speaking from experience…
After a relaxing afternoon at the beach go get ready for a night out in Red Hook. For apps and drinks head to Duffy’s Love Shack which is a must for the atmosphere alone. It’s a tiki bar in the middle of a parking lot. They offer an endless list of creative drinks and bar food if you’re hungry.
Once you’re ready for dinner you can walk down to Tap & Still for the best chicken sandwich on the island. Their burgers are pretty good too. Their fries are served in brown paper bags where you can see the grease stains from all that fried deliciousness.
Set out on another adventure to a different island but this time staying within the US Virgin Islands. Take the ferry from St. Thomas to St. John which is about a 30 minute ferry ride if you leave out of Red Hook.
Leave early in the morning and grab breakfast at North Shore Deli in Mongoose Junction. If you have a small soft-shell cooler that will fit in a backpack then I highly recommend some of their grab-and-go foods for a picnic lunch on the beach.
After you’ve fueled up for the day catch a taxi out of Cruz Bay and head to the Cinnamon Bay Trailhead in the Virgin Islands National Park. The trail begins on Centerline Road and winds down to some sugar plantation ruins and ultimately the most beautiful beach you have ever laid eyes on.
Note: The trail is about 1.8 miles and rated moderate-strenuous.
This is where that picnic lunch would have come in handy for us as all of the amenities at Cinnamon Bay had been taken out in the hurricanes. The beauty and seclusion of the beach made up for that though. Talk about a romantic getaway.
We finally got hungry enough to leave the view behind and hitchhiked our way to Trunk Bay where there was a food truck thank goodness. There is a snorkel trail here that is part of the National Park so be sure to rent snorkels for the afternoon.
Once you’ve had enough of lounging on the beach head back to Mongoose Junction in Cruz Bay. If you want to do any shopping this is the perfect place. Otherwise, head to The Tap Room by St. John Brewers (see photo above) for some much deserved snacks and cold beer.
For dinner walk back towards the ferry dock to Cruz Bay Landing where you may even get some live music. Sit on the patio and enjoy people watching in the middle of all the tourists coming and going.
You can check the ferry schedule here and be sure to catch the last boat out or you’ll be staying on St. John.
Spend the morning relaxing by the pool at your resort because hey, you deserve it. If you’ve chosen one of the resorts I listed at the beginning then you’ll have beautiful views to go along with it.
For lunch take a food tour with St. Thomas Food Tours. The Historic Downtown Tour gives you an interesting overview of the history of St. Thomas and Charlotte Amalie.
You also get to see some interesting sights off the beaten path like a mural in the post office and the Taphus – a brewery behind the Billabong store.
The main attraction for the food tour of course is the local cuisine you’ll try. Callaloo, conch fritters, and fungi are just a few dishes that we sampled. You’ll also get a good idea of some restaurants to come back to if you’d like.
After the food tour you can spend some time exploring and shopping in downtown Charlotte Amalie. Some of the best shopping can be found along Dronningens Gade or if you’re looking for something more high end you can look in Havensight Mall.
Finish the day off just as relaxing as the morning with a sunset cruise. There is one offered out of Marriott’s Frenchman’s Cove on the VI Cat and New Horizons & Breakaway Charters offers a cruise out of Red Hook.
Bottomless painkillers are served as well as hors d’oeuvres and you’ll have incredible views of the island as the sun gradually makes its way down.
If you didn’t fill up with snacks on board, then head to Amalia Café for dinner after you dock. You’ll be able to sit out on the patio and enjoy a nice drink with delicious Spanish dishes.
You’ll be glad you took yesterday to relax because today is another adventure and this one will tire you out for sure!
Virgin Island Ecotours offers a full-day Kayak, Hike, & Snorkel Adventure at Mangrove Lagoon if you’re up for it. I do recommend only taking this trip if you are in semi-decent shape. The kayaking is what can get difficult especially when you are coming back at the end of the day.
Though if you are in a tandem kayak it may be easier. Tyler and I decided to do individual kayaks. They do offer shorter tours if you don’t feel like you are up for the full five hours.
This was one of my absolute favorite days of the trip though and that is saying a lot. Kayaking through stingray alley and between the little islands with mangrove trees all around is breathtaking. We stopped and took a hike to some tidal pools that were full of marine life.
Our guide, D’Haden, was fantastic and super knowledgeable about the plants and animals that we encountered. He led us to Cas Caye next where we had a packed lunch of sandwiches and watched a hermit crab race. The hermit crabs were a little unnerving as there were so many and they were EVERYWHERE.
After a short hike on Cas Caye where we saw a poisonous tree of all things, we got to snorkel! I’ve been lucky enough to snorkel at many places and this was by far my favorite. There were schools of colorful fish, lobster, octopus, and we even saw a stingray and barracuda!
It truly was an adventure to remember.
Once we made it back to the room we did have to take a nap before going out that night. Even then we were still pretty tired!
We do love going out to one fancy restaurant each time we go on vacation and this time we chose the Old Stone Farmhouse. The name is completely literal as it’s a stone building from an old sugar plantation.
The food, presentation, and service are all incredible and if they still have it on the menu I highly recommend the bread sampler appetizer and Key Lime Pie dessert.
Start the day with breakfast at Margaritaville. They have huge omelettes that any savory breakfast lover will enjoy or for those that prefer sweet the French Toast will hit the spot.
Make your way out to Magen’s Bay but try to get there a little early. It gets extremely crowded and there is a $5 entrance fee. In all honesty, this is not my favorite beach but it is considered one of the top beaches in the world so you can go for the experience if you’d like.
They do have a nice bar where you can order food and drinks and a place to rent chairs and umbrellas. When Tyler and I got there it was late morning and the beach was already so crowded that we ended up finding a shady spot at the bar where we could people watch.
While you aren’t guaranteed to catch fish, most people don’t go home without a little bit of excitement at least. The first time I went fishing in St. Thomas my dad caught a Blue Marlin and the last time I caught a beautiful African Pompano.
Not only is it a great trip if you love to fish, but the scenery is unmatched. When you go in the afternoon depending on what time you may get a second sunset cruise!
Once you make it back head out to the Caribbean Fish Market for the last meal on the island.
FAQ for St. Thomas, USVI
How much are flights to St. Thomas?
This varies of course, but you can find deals on the east coast that are in the $200s. It can get up to around $400-$500 though. If you are wondering how to find the best flight deals, I use Google Flights for all my flight searches.
When should I travel to St. Thomas?
The best time is shoulder season in April – June.
Is St. Thomas safe?
I’ve been four times and never felt unsafe. However, I always travel with another person and am never outside of the resort or Red Hook after dark. I always try to take precautions just as I would anywhere else.
How do you get around St. Thomas without a car?
It is very easy to get around using taxis and I even prefer that over renting a car on the island. The driving style there is much different than here in the US and I would not be comfortable driving myself around.
Have you ever been to St. Thomas? Do you have anything to add to this itinerary or tips?