BVI White Bay, Jost Van Dyke, BVI – Image courtesy of alphayachting.com

How to get around British Virgin Islands

The best way to get around the British Virgin Islands (BVI) is by car, taxi and boat.

Ferries are a popular way to get around the islands with frequent daily links between Tortola and Virgin Gorda, Jost Van Dyke and Peter Island.

There are also daily ferries between Tortola and St Thomas and St John in the US Virgin Islands. Ferry journeys between Tortola and St Thomas take about 50 minutes.

You can also get around by chartering a boat.

The British Virgin Islands has a good road network, although roads are often steep, narrow, and poorly maintained.

Traffic drives on the left-hand side of the road. The speed limit is 64kph (40mph). Seat belts are compulsory. Local driving standards are low with drunk driving laws non-existent, so care needs to be taken.


Transport options in BVI

Air: BVI (www.fly-bvi.com) and Caribbean Wings-BVI Airlines (www.bvi-airlines.com) provide inter-island charter flights.


Sea: The main ferry routes operate from the main ferry hub of Tortola to Virgin Gorda, Jost Van Dyke, Marina Cay and Peter Island. A list of ferry companies is available from the British Virgin Islands Tourist Board (www.bvitourism.com/inter-island-ferries).

Main routes include Tortola (Road Town) to Virgin Gorda (Spanish Town) every hour, taking 30 minutes; Tortola (Road Town) to Anegada taking around 75 minutes on Monday, Wednesday and Friday; Tortola (Beef Island/Trellis Bay) to Anegada taking 60 minutes on Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday; Tortola (Beef Island/Trellis Bay) to Virgin Gorda (Spanish Town) 20 minutes, several times daily; and Tortola (West End) to Jost Van Dyke taking 25 minutes, five times daily.

As yacht charter is one of the major industries, you can also hire bareboats for cruising between islands.


On land

Car hire: There are numerous local and international car hire companies. However, you can not hire cars from the airport, instead vehicles are available from offices in Tortola and Virgin Gorda.

Drivers need to be at least 25 years old. You can drive on a valid national licence for up to 30 days.

Driving while using a handheld cell phone is illegal (but earpieces are permitted) in BVI.

Taxi: There are several taxi companies on Tortola and Virgin Gorda. Many drivers double up as tour guides, and you can hire taxis on an hourly or daily basis. All BVI taxi rates are fixed by law.

Bus: There is no official bus schedule or route. The many enclosed and open-air buses that travel around Tortola and Virgin Gorda are commonly classified as taxis.


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More about BVI…


Latest update: How to get around British Virgin Islands: 13 June, 2020


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