BVI in the spring - Looking for Wisdom - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 11 Old 11-13-2013 Thread Starter
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BVI in the spring - Looking for Wisdom

My lovely bride and I will be chartering in the BVI this spring. Any words of wisdom, from air travel to bars to avoid, will be greatly appreciated. Keep it coming.
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post #2 of 11 Old 11-13-2013
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Re: BVI in the spring - Looking for Wisdom

I'm sure plenty of others will respond, but in terms of airfare...generally you can either fly into Beef Island or into St. Thomas and take one of the ferries over. I've done both, and while flying into Beef Island is the most convenient, it is also considerably more expensive. Flew into STT this year and had noproblems whatsoever with the ferries, although others have had issues. They have (had) a reputation for being unreliable.

The main advice I can give is to check the Cruise ship schedule...I believe the BVI port authority lists it, as well as where the ships will be going and on what days. It also lists the capacity, so you can get an idea of how big the ship is...We avoid them like the plague and will plan our itinerary around them. Certain places, such as Jost, Cane Garden Bay, etc, can be mobbed with cruise ship patrons.
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post #3 of 11 Old 11-14-2013
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Re: BVI in the spring - Looking for Wisdom

This is a regular topic and a forum search on the Charter forum will find a raft of advice.

My 2 cents.

The Baths are over rated.

Do not plan to go to Anegada unless you are there for 2 weeks.

Jumping naked off the Willy T no longer earns you free drinks.
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post #4 of 11 Old 11-14-2013
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Re: BVI in the spring - Looking for Wisdom

Sorry TQA but I have to disagree about the Baths. The Baths are very beautiful but to fully enjoy them you have to arrive at 7am and enter at devil's bay. This will ensure that you have the place virtually to yourself. Once you have seen them once you will likely not go back but definitely worth a visit for a first timer.

I feel Anagada is overrated but for the record I think the whole BVI experience is overrated. We have been twice and do not plan to return. The Abacos, on the other hand, we will return to and likely on our own boat.

Air travel is direct via Jetblue from Boston to St. Thomas. You then take a ferry to Tortola. You can fly into Tortola but it is a small airport and must be a connecting flight from San Juan. The Jetblue option is usually cheaper but a tad less convenient but still fun. Check out this thread: BVI Charter Re-cap

Don, Kathy and I just sat down with a couple last Friday to help them plan their trip. We would be happy to do the same for you.
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post #5 of 11 Old 11-14-2013
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Re: BVI in the spring - Looking for Wisdom

A nice alternative to the Baths is Fallen Jerusalem. There are only moorings for two or three boats so if you can get one you won't have any crowds. Great snorkeling.

Also, the bays on the backside of Norman Island will get you away from the party at the Bight.
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post #6 of 11 Old 11-14-2013
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Re: BVI in the spring - Looking for Wisdom

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Originally Posted by DonScribner View Post
My lovely bride and I will be chartering in the BVI this spring. Any words of wisdom, from air travel to bars to avoid, will be greatly appreciated. Keep it coming.
Avoid the Willy T on Sunday nights. Seaborne has recently started offering flights from San Juan to the BVI. You might wish to check them out, can't recall who they partner with at the moment.

There is loads of current information at traveltalkonline dot com as well.

Enjoy your trip.
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post #7 of 11 Old 11-14-2013
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Re: BVI in the spring - Looking for Wisdom

We went in April about 5 years ago.
We planned our trip in the reverse of what Moorings suggested....went with friends who had been before and said it helps avoid the crowds.
Try to get to wherever you are going to spend the night by 2 or 3 in the afternoon...after that you may not get a mooring ball and then have to anchor....which can be nerve wracking in some spots.
Lots of fun snorkeling... no real need for diving equipment as the water is so clear.
Don't lug a bunch of food....there are two supermarkets and a great deli as well as liquor store. We provisioned ourselves...used a taxi to and from the stores. Get plenty of drinking water...bottled, unless you plan to drink from the tank...yuK!
Ask for extra towels....they supplied us with those just for asking! We cooked breakfast and lunch (mostly sandwiches) on board and enjoyed dinner out at a different island each night.
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post #8 of 11 Old 11-14-2013
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Re: BVI in the spring - Looking for Wisdom

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...for the record I think the whole BVI experience is overrated. We have been twice and do not plan to return. The Abacos, on the other hand, we will return to and likely on our own boat.
Wow, don't hear that often. We had a great time in the BVI, but it's definitely on the commercial side of things. Will have to consider the Abacos considering the source.
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post #9 of 11 Old 11-15-2013
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Re: BVI in the spring - Looking for Wisdom

Commercialization is increasing in BVI, but its light years from Disney. I've never known anyone that didn't love their first trip and you'll never do it all in one or two weeks. After a repeat trip or two, you might begin to feel the BTDT.

The OPs question is a bit broad to answer. Copy and paste this into a google search: site:sailnet.com BVI

Then ask any specifics and there are many of us with a ton of BVI experience:


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post #10 of 11 Old 11-15-2013
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Re: BVI in the spring - Looking for Wisdom

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Wow, don't hear that often. We had a great time in the BVI, but it's definitely on the commercial side of things. Will have to consider the Abacos considering the source.
I should qualify this. My wife and I sail the coast of Maine(for now) and it is hard to compare that to the Caribbean. We do not typical like hot weather and tend to opt for the less crowded anchorages. Our long term cruising plans include the Canadian maritimes and northern Europe. Not the Caribbean. We have already visited many of the islands including St. Vincent/Grenadines, St. Lucia, Antigua, Barbados, St. Martin, Puerto Rico, USVI and BVI.

We did enjoy our time there but felt there was nothing to compel us to return again. Our friends who have chartered 11 times in the BVIs said they will not return ;-)

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