Virgin Islands FAQ
U.S. Virgin Islands
St. Thomas, St. Croix and St. John
A very mountainous 13 miles long by 4 miles wide showcasing a natural harbor popular with cruise ships and many protected bays. The most developed and cosmopolitan of the islands with a wide range of accommodations from bed and breakfasts to luxury villas and grand hotels.
40 miles south from St. Thomas with a mix of lush mountainsides and arid rocky points this 22 mile long and 6 mile wide island houses beautiful beaches between the two main towns Frederiksted and Christiansted rich with European history, wonderful architecture, ruins, and museums.
Located only 4 miles east of St. Thomas, St. John is 7 miles long by 3 miles wide with more than two thirds of the island protected by the National Park Service making it the most underdeveloped and laid back of the islands. With only two major resorts on the island, the beaches remain unspoiled and quiet although there is plenty to do for nature enthusiast from hiking to snorkeling.
East of Puerto Rico between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean at the top of the arc of Caribbean islands consisting of 3 main islands and around 50 smaller islets and cays. Each island holds its own unique characteristics with lush green forests, seaside cliffs, mountainous landscapes, small streams, arid lands and beautiful white sandy beaches
Total: 1,910 sq km
Land: 346 sq km
Water: 1,564 sq km
The U.S. Virgin Islands were discovered in 1493 by Columbus on his second voyage to the New World. Over the years the islands were ruled by the English, Dutch, French, Spanish, Knights of Malta, and Danes. The United States bought the islands from Denmark in World War One for $25,000,000 in gold
English 74.7%, Spanish or Spanish Creole 16.8%, French or French Creole 6.6%, other 1.9%
The unique culture and history reflects the West African, Danish, Spanish, Irish, Polish, and German heritage of those who have made the U.S. Virgin Islands their home since the late 1400s.
Tourism, petroleum refining, watch assembly, rum distilling, construction, pharmaceuticals, textiles, electronics
St. Thomas and St. Croix have an international airport
Non-stop flights are available from New York, Newark, Baltimore, Atlanta, Miami, and Fort Lauderdale with connecting flights from Chicago, Los Angeles, Dallas, New York, Miami, and Atlanta via the San Juan hub. There are also connecting services from Canada, Europe, South America, and the Far East. Commuter service between San Juan and St. Croix and St. Thomas is also available.
U.S. Citizens are not required to show Passports but must show evidence of citizenship upon leaving such as photo ID. Citizens of countries other than the U.S. should follow U.S. travel regulations
The U.S. Virgin Islands are in the Atlantic Standard Time zone, one hour ahead of Eastern Standard Time (during daylight savings time only
Hotter months June - August mid 80s and winter months December - February high 70s
Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1st to November 30th with the highest occurrences of storms in August and September
Subtropical, tempered by easterly trade winds, relatively low humidity, little seasonal temperature variation; rainy season September to November
Mostly hilly to rugged and mountainous with little level land
Travel is quick and simple between the islands. St. John is 20 minutes from St. Thomas by ferry and there is a daily direct 25 minute flight by small plane between St. Croix and St. Thomas. Helicopter service also connects the islands. Another option available for inter-island travel is the VI SeaTrans which offers a 90 minute ferry with service 1st class amenities and fantastic scenery between the Islands (Friday-Monday) between downtown Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas and Gallows Bay, St. Croix. Rates begin at $50 one way for adults and $45 one way for children ages 3-11
Taxis are available everywhere on all three islands with rates based on the destination not mileage. Car rental is widely available just remember to drive on the left. There is also convenient bus service throughout the islands.
The U.S. Virgin Islands are a duty-free port, with no sales or luxury taxes on items such as watches, cameras, fine jewelry, china, and leather goods. U.S. citizens are allowed a duty-free shopping quota of $1,600
Features international cuisine such as French, Japanese, Italian, and Chinese with local island specialties; conch fritters, fried plantains, sweet potato pudding, and curried chicken
Tipping of 15 to 20 percent is customary for good service. Some hotels automatically add a service charge
Diving, fishing, eco-tours, sailing, island tours, snorkeling, windsurfing and golfing
U.S. Dollars. Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Travelers Checks are widely accepted on the Island and the banks will accept all forms of currency.
You can direct-dial from the United States Virgin Islands to the U.S. mainland. The service connects callers to Europe and South America. 340 is the area code for all U.S. Virgin Islands phone numbers
U.S. standard 120 volt/60 cycle
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