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Old 03-18-2010
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Suggestions for BVI Itinerary

I'll be chartering in the BVI's again this April for the 4th year in a row. Man I love that place. I read on another forum some reference to Donovan's Reef restaurant on Scrub Island. Does anyone know if it's open?

I'm thinking of taking a day sail over to St. John's and am looking for a good spot for lunch ashore. Will be leaving from Jost Van Dyke sailing over and then back to Sopher's Hole.

If anyone else has any "hot spots" I'm trying to find some new places I've not been. Thanks for any assistance.
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Old 03-18-2010
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Teacherspet - they are cracking down on boats not clearing in/out so make sure you do clear out of the BVI, clear in&out of the USVI and subsequently clear back into the BVI - that will chew up a significant portion of your day (plus everyone aboard needs to be a US citizen or visa holder to be let into the US). I would reconsider a mere day trip to St. John , although Mahoe bay is beautiful.
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Old 03-18-2010
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I agree with Zan, you need to clear customs/immigration in both USVI and BVI. We did it the first time I chartered in the BVIs. Never again, simply because it's a waste of time. If you want to spend significant time in the USVI's then maybe I would consider it, but definitely not for a day trip. The time spent down there is already too short without wasting some of it dealing with govt bureaucracy.
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Old 03-18-2010
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Donovan's Reef has been closed for over five years. The new Scrub Island Resort is partially open and I believe there is at least one restaurant there. I haven't been so can't speak to it.

Clearing out and in of the BVI isn't too bad, but US Customs in Cruz Bay can be painful and lengthy. As Zanshin noted, it is a time-consuming process for a day trip and the risks associated with skipping it are significant.

It's hard to suggest new places if we don't know where you have been.

That said, Spaghetti Junction in Road Town is my restaurant of choice for the first night down. I like to spend a couple of days in North Sound, one at the Leverick Bay end and one off the south shore of Prickly Pear. The sail from North Sound to Anegada and from Anegada to JVD are great fun. There is good hiking on Norman and Little JVD. Sandy Cay makes a dandy lunch stop. Sidney's Peace and Love in Little Harbour JVD is one of my favorite hang-out spots (although Sidney passed away three weeks ago; I don't know what the plans are for the restaurant). Have you been to the Bubbly Pool?

Talk it over with your chart briefer, and be aware of the red-lined areas - some of them have changed, and some of them are senseless but are "the rules."
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Old 03-18-2010
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Scrub Island is open.

I'd be sure to go to Anegada and Jost van Dyke and to get lots of good snorkeling in at places like Monkey Point.

I put together some ideas on itineraries in the BVI here:
How to plan your BVI sailing itinerary : BVI Bound
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Old 03-19-2010
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Bvi

Day 1 St Thomas to Jost be there by 3:00-3:30 to clear customs (Do not cheat fine is $5000.00 for fist offence
Day 2 Jost to Little Jost for a short hike to the north side then onto Marina Cay
Day 3 Marina Cay to the Baths on Virgin Gorda then in the afternoon sail to the dogs for snorkeling.
Day 4 Dogs to Anegada depending on weather
Day 5 Bitter End
Day 6 Sail to Willie T on Normans
Day 7 Sopers Hole (west end Tortola) St Johns then Redhook Bay, St Thomas
If you want advice on customs email us
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Old 03-20-2010
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Thanks for all the great suggestions. Anyone know anything about going into Spanish Town? After our night at Norman, I was thinking of doing an upwind to Spanish Town, doing lunch at Top of Baths and afternoon fun at Baths. Then dinner in Spanish Town somewhere. Anyone used the morring balls or marina there? I'll be on a 50' Voyage Cat that I'm charterning. I'm more comfortable using mooring balls versus anchoring. I guess there is the Marina option also.
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Old 03-20-2010
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Spanish Town marina now belongs to IGY and has gotten pricey, but they are friendly there and from the marina it is a short walk to The Rock Cafe or Chez Bamboo or a short taxi ride to other restarants. I've only taken mooring balls outside of Spanish Town for running in to Customs & Immigration but it felt rather rolly (then again, I'm on a monohull and not a cat) but it might be better just to run up to the North Sound and go to Leverick Bay - either take a slip there or use one of the many mooring balls.
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A slip in Spanishtown is usually uncomfortably warm if you don't have A/C. There is no breeze in there.

I haven't picked up a mooring there in years but don't remember it being rolly. Depends on wind direction and if there is a ground swell coming around.
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Old 03-21-2010
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Anyone know anything about the Bamba Shack on the West End? One of our crew has read about the full moon party and we'll be there on the full moon date. I don't think there is an anchorage. I'm thinking maybe Cane Garden Bay and then taxi? We are spending the first and last night at the Voyage base in Sopher's Hole so I was trying to avoid staying there yet a third night. Anything anyone knows about Bamba Shack and where to catch a mooring ball to be in close proximity I'd appreciate.
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