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This article was written on 17 May 2012, and is filled under U.S. destinations.

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Traveling to the U.S. Virgin Islands, 99 Steps and More

Are you looking for a tropical paradise? Maybe somewhere in the Caribbean? The U.S. Virgin Islands may have all what you are looking for : world-class beaches, golf, great wild life, stunning marine life and coral reefs, duty free shopping, high sea fishing… The U.S. Virgin Islands certainly has something to offer to about anyone. The ideal temperatures, the sunny blue sky and the rich culture and heritage of the U.S. Virgin Islands are waiting for you!

US Virgin IslandsThe U.S. Virigin Islands are a U.S. overseas territory located in the Caribbean, near the British Virgin Islands and east of Puerto Rico. The group of islands consists of three main islands, Saint Thomas, Saint Croix and Saint Jean, and a few more smaller islets. These islands, synonym of peace and relaxation, attract over 2 million tourists every year, many of which are coming via cruiseships.

Picture by Rennett Stowe

Beach, suntanning, snorkeling, diving, shopping and golf…

These are only a few of the many activities tourists love to do when in the U.S. Virgin Islands. These islands provide an outstanding vacation spot: gorgeous beaches, luxurious forests, rich coral reefs and a wide array of fun activities for active or less active people. Duty-free shopping is obviously one of the major attractions for cruisers. Snorkeling and diving are especially great in St. John and Buck islands, near Saint Croix, while other water sports are available in all of the beaches and ports of the territory. Sailing is one of tourists and locals favorite activity. Not a big fan of water spots? Hiking and horseback riding are also available on most islands. Avid golfers will also find their spot with the islands’ beautiful golf courses such as Buccaneer, Mahogany or Carambola Golf Club.

Saint Thomas

St. Thomas, the main island of the U.S. Virgin Islands, is well-known for its shopping, its beaches and a panoply of fun activities, including kayaking, snorkeling, fishing, sailing, surfing, golf and much more. The U.S. Virgin Islands capital, Charlotte Amalie, is located on this island and is a main port for many cruise ships. Main attractions include Sapphire and Coki beaches, Coral World, an underwater observatory, a fort, built by the Dutch in the 1600s and the 99 Steps a historical sight (the actual count is 103) built from the ballast bricks of the tall ships coming from the old world.

Saint Croix

In Saint Croix, the largest island of the territory, you’ll discover some magnificent beach sands, coral reefs, forested hills and cute little towns and villages with historical buildings. St. Croix main attractions are Buck Island Reef National Park, a must-go spot for snorkelers and divers, St. Croix Aquarium, St. Georges Botanical Garden, with over 1500 native and exotic species, Estate Whim Plantation, Cruzan Rum Distillery and the luxurious tropical forests located on the north-west of the island. Golf, kayaking and horseback riding are also among other interesting activities to be found on the island.

Saint Jean

Last but not least, the smallest of the three main islands, St Jean, possesses the best beaches of the main islands. This is probably because two third of the island is protected and are part of the territories’ national park, making it an ideal spot for hiking and snorkeling. Tourists can also enjoy sailing, shopping, and the island’s great nightlife.

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