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St. John USVI · Attractions

Cruz Bay, St. John

St. John's Sights and Attractions


When you travel to St. John in the U.S. Virgin Islands, it will be hard to miss Cruz Bay. Not only is it the hub of commercial activity and transportation, but Cruz Bay offers a wide variety of picturesque shops, restaurants and even a handful of hokey little bars to entertain the casual vacationer. On a laid-back island like St. John, the somewhat subdued atmosphere of Cruz Bay's streets is as lively as it gets. But that seems to be the reason people enjoy the island so much; it is calm and peaceful and therefore so much different from the other Caribbean destinations that have been overrun by tourist traps and other annoying factors that are bound to get in the way of your much needed island "getaway." Yet while Cruz Bay doesn't entirely break out of this sleepy little barely-a-town-yet mold, it does offer a tiny bit of relief for you if you are one of those who wants to shop a little bit, go meet some locals at a bar or simply enjoy a sense of civilization amidst the natural world. In fact, this can be nice resting point for the vacationer who wants to take a break from the immense and wild beauty that St. John possesses.

For the best of the island's shopping, the Mongoose Junction is a beautiful little intersection of Spanish architecture and Caribbean panache that really sets the place alight. There you will be able to choose from a few different eateries and restaurants squeezed into the shopping center. In addition to Mongoose Junction, a couple of recommended shopping venues in Cruz Bay are the Wharfside Village and King Street where the happy shopper like you can browse through a better selection of goods, although at a bit of a cost considering the beauty of Mongoose Junction. Nearby you can find wonderful restaurants and cafés. Luckily for you, there are also tennis courts and a fitness center where you can practice aerobics, should you wish to. Lodging can be found close by through a wide selection of hotels that boast amazing views of Cruz Bay.

In fact, from these vistas you will be able to look down over the many different water sports going on. That's because, aside from Cruz Bay's "city" life, one of the main attractions is that it offers is a wonderful body of water that is sheltered from the greater ocean surrounding the island. Here, happy vacationers like you can easily go diving, sailing, windsurfing, kayaking, snorkeling or even fishing for sport. While other beaches and bays provide secluded beauty and unique surprises, Cruz Bay remains party central for all sort of water play.

For hikers, Cruz Bay is a great starting point for treks through the island or along the coast to other beaches. From the Visitor's Center you can take Lind Point Trail to one of the best viewpoints on St. John. Continue on to find yourself at Honeymoon beach, a slightly less crowded white-sand paradise. From this trail, it is also possible to connect to others and, for the more adventurous hikers, the whole island could be explored. By getting all the information and maps at the Cruz Bay Visitor Center, you could soon be happily on your way.

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John Big Hat Walsh

See you on the Island,

John "Big Hat" Walsh

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