Consider a honeymoon or romantic getaway holiday in idyllic St Thomas, home to the stunning Magens Bay Beach – rated by many as one of the world’s most beautiful beaches.
Blessed with great conditions for sailing, scuba diving and game fishing, St Thomas also offers fine dining restaurants, a choice of luxurious 5-star resorts and arguably the best discounted duty-free shopping in the Caribbean – the perfect spot for a honeymoon.
Home to a natural deepwater harbour, St Thomas is one of the busiest cruise ports in the Caribbean and is certainly the busiest cruise ship harbour in the West Indies.
The island of St Thomas is indented with numerous white-sand beaches, typically situated close to a resort and mainly surrounded by lush tree-covered hills.
Best beaches in St Thomas, include the following…
(North coast) – Sunbathe on this picturesque, palm-fringed, white-sand beach framed by lush green mountains and edging a long and sheltered inlet facing a sandy-bottomed bay with calm, turquoise waters perfect for swimming.
This gorgeous 1.2km-long beach has been rated by many as one of the world's 10 most beautiful beaches.
Although a public beach, you are required to pay an entrance fee of USD4. Facilities include umbrellas for hire, changing rooms, toilets and saltwater showers.
Water sports include kayaks and paddle boats. A beachside bar and snack kiosk provide cold drinks and snacks.
Magens Bay is just 5km from Charlotte Amalie.
(North coast) – If you want to enjoy a similar paradise to Magens Bay Beach in an au natural style, follow the marked trail over a rocky headland from Magens Bay Beach to this clothing-optional beach (that is un-officially tolerated by the local authorities although it illegal to sunbathe nude in the USVI).
There are no facilities here, except shady palm trees.
(North coast) – Unwind on the brilliant powder-white coral sands of this 200m-long beach that lies on the eastern side of a small peninsula that is also home to Coral World Marine Park.
Framed on one side by lush rolling hills and on the other by bush-clad rocky outcrops, Coki Point faces a crystalline clear bay that offers the best snorkelling on St Thomas.
Take your own flippers and mask or hire a set from the beachside rental shack. Snorkel or scuba dive over coral formations teeming with rainbow-hued tropical fish.
Facilities include umbrellas and sun loungers for hire, changing facilities, showers and toilets. Buy a tasty snack and cold drink from one of the funky beach huts then enjoy the scene overlooking the turquoise sea and picturesque Thatch Cay.
Water sports include parasailing and water skiing. The beach is very popular with locals, especially at weekends.
Coki Point Beach is around 8km from Charlotte Amalie.
(North coast) – Unwind on the palm-fringed white sand of this 200m-long beach that faces the calm turquoise waters of Smith Bay.
Facilities include umbrellas and sun loungers for hire, changing facilities, showers and toilets.
Nearby hotels provide a range of creature comforts and beach kiosks offer cold drinks and snacks. Water sports include snorkelling, kayaking, paddle boats, parasailing and water skiing. Grand Beach is near Coral World.
(East end) – Sunbathe on the powder-white sand of this gorgeous palm-fringed beach framed by bush-covered headlands and shelving into calm crystalline water with rocky outcrops that are perfect for snorkelling.
There are no facilities on this 200m-long beach so pack a picnic. To get there, flag a taxi from Charlotte Amalie heading toward Red Hook. Secret Harbour is just 10km from the capital.
Come for a day or enjoy the creature comforts at the Secret Harbour Beach Resort.
(East end) – Unwind on this wide, 600m-long crescent of palm-fringed powder-white sand facing the calm turquoise waters of Saint John Bay. The bay is perfect for families with small children.
Go swimming and windsurfing or snorkel amid colourful fish that flit around the large reef that sits just metres from the beach.
Facilities include umbrellas, sun loungers and snorkelling equipment for hire, changing rooms, showers and toilets.
Come for a day or stay longer at the Sapphire Beach Resort & Marina.
(East end) – Discover one of the island's prettiest beaches – a 300m-long curve of palm-fringed powder-white sand that shelves into calm turquoise waters perfect for swimming and snorkelling.
Facilities are found at the nearby resorts or you can take your own provisions.
Come for a day or choose from the Wyndham Sugar Bay Resort & Spa and the Sapphire Beach Resort, which lie to either end of this gorgeous and generally uncrowded beach.
(South Side) – Unwind on this spectacular 300m-long white-sand beach (also known as Frenchman's Bay Beach – South Side )that sits framed by bush-clad headlands near the luxury Frenchman's Reef & Morning Star Marriott Beach Resort.
The beach is easily accessed by a cliff-front elevator from Frenchman's Reef or from the car park at the eastern end of the beach.
Sunbathe on the powder-white sand, swim in the calm, clear waters and enjoy numerous water sports including sailing, parasailing and paddle boating.
Facilities include umbrellas, sun loungers and snorkelling equipment for hire, as well as changing rooms, showers and toilets. The water here can become choppy as it faces the open sea.
Morning Star Beach is around 4km east of Charlotte Amalie.
Stroll picturesque streets lined with red-roofed, whitewashed buildings and historic colonial architecture in the picturesque capital, Charlotte Amalie, which sweeps around a deepwater harbour surrounded by lush tree-covered hills. Just offshore lie the scenic Hassel and Water islands, easily reached by ferry.
Crammed with a plethora of architectural styles that reflect the island’s diverse cultural past, Charlotte Amalie offers great shopping in the narrow cobblestoned alleyways linking Waterfront Drive with Main Street (Dronningens Gade), as well as numerous historic sights just east of Government Hill.
Visit the historic 17th century Fort Christian, then stroll the palm-lined 99 Steps (although there are actually 103) to the top of Government Hill for panoramic views and to visit Blackbeard's Castle (or Fort Skytsborg), the earliest fortification in the US Virgin Islands and said to have been the home of the notorious 19th century pirate, Edward Teach.
Admire the white pillars, stone walls and sand floor of the St Thomas Synagogue – the second-oldest synagogue in the western hemisphere. Then check out the Camille Pissaro Gallery on Main Street, where the artist (a co-founder of the French Impressionist school) was born in 1830 and subsequently raised in the neighbourhood.
Later, wander through the smaller and quieter neighbourhood of Frenchtown, located on the peninsula due west of Charlotte Amalie. Home to most of St Thomas's French descendants for centuries, discover Frenchtown’s fine dining restaurants and bars and make time to explore the French Heritage Museum.
At Coral World Ocean Park, see stingrays, sharks and giant moray eels from the three-storey underwater observation tower located just 30m offshore. For a different underwater perspective, ride the Atlantis submarine to depths of 50m or stroll along the ocean floor 6m underwater, wearing a helmet and breathing through an air tube. Whatever you choose, this is a great family attraction.
For views of the harbour and Charlotte Amalie, take the St Thomas Skyride to the summit of 200m-high Slag Hill at Paradise Point. Enjoy a self-guided nature walk around the manicured Botanical gardens that surround the Estate St Peter Greathouse that sits on the lower slopes of a volcano.
From here you can admire more than 200 varieties of West Indian plants and trees, including an umbrella plant from Madagascar, and enjoy panoramic views over approximately 20 US Virgin Islands.
For the best views of the island’s hills, white-sand beaches and surrounding crystal clear turquoise waters, hire a car and take the scenic drive along Crown Mountain Road to Mountain Top at Crown Mountain. You will be rewarded with a picture-perfect view of the Sir Francis Drake Channel, which separates the US Virgins from the British Virgin Islands.
Take a day trip over to Hassel Island to see the remains of an old 19th century British military garrison or spend the day on Water Island (often considered the fourth inhabited island in the US Virgin Islands).
Here you can hire a bike and explore the island, stopping off to picnic on a choice of mainly quiet and secluded white-sand beaches, including gorgeous Honeymoon Beach.
Shop ‘til you drop at the numerous duty-free emporiums and boutiques of Charlotte Amalie or enjoy activities such as sailing, scuba diving, deep-sea fishing or golf.
Shopping – St Thomas is a shopping Mecca, with great duty-free deals on handicrafts and imported goods. The main shopping area is focused around the harbour along Main Street (or Dronningens Gade), Back Street (Vimmelskaft) and the Waterfront Highway (Kyst Vejen), as well as in the myriad of alleyways linking these streets.
Some of the shops occupy former pirate warehouses. The best buys on St Thomas include china, crystal, perfumes, jewellery (especially emeralds), Haitian art, clothing, watches and wooden items.
Golfing – Golf lovers can tee-off from the challenging Mahogany Run Golf Course, an 18-hole par-70 course that rises and falls like a roller coaster as it follows the hilly contours of the coastline. Clubs and shoes are available for hire.
Scuba diving – Beginners can enjoy great diving over coral reefs and along underwater tunnels lined with caves around Buck Island, Cow and Calf Rocks at the southeast end of St Thomas, a 45-minute boat ride from Charlotte Amalie. Wreck dives include the coral encrusted Cartanser Sr, the WIT Shoal and the Major General Rogers, home to myriad of rainbow-hued resident fish.
Experienced divers may prefer to dive the more exposed sheer rock pinnacles at Sail Rock and French Cap Pinnacle, a favourite hangout for lobsters and green and hawksbill turtles.
Game fishing – Hook up a charter to catch blue marlin, tuna, barracuda, bone fish, king fish, mackerel and tarpon. The USVI offers a great selection of boats and experienced skippers in waters that hold 19 world records for deep-sea game/sports fishing, including eight for blue marlin. The best fishing in St Thomas waters is from June through October.
Sailing – Charter a yacht to explore the islands any time of year or join the International Rolex Regatta in March. The marinas in Red Hook and in Charlotte Amalie offer a selection of bare-boat and crewed yachts for day cruises or longer.
St Thomas is the most American of the three main islands and offers a huge selection of honeymoon accommodation options including the beachfront palazzo-style Ritz-Carlton, St Thomas, and the Morning Star Marriott Beach Resort, a large, all-inclusive and luxurious American-style mega-resort.
The best time to visit St Thomas is anytime from early-December to mid-April, with the driest weather during the months of January, February and March.
You can expect an average hightemperature of 29°C (84°F) and a low of 23°C (73°F).
The U.S. Virgin Islands has a hot tropical climate year-round, with a relatively cooler period from December to March, with average highs around 29°C (84°F), and a hot and sultry period from May to October, with highs around 32°C (90°F), during which the high heat is tempered by easterly trade winds.
You can expect rainfall throughout the year in Charlotte Amalie. The months with the least rainfall are January through March.
For more climate info: St Thomas Weather Guide
St Thomas is located in the US Virgin Islands – 60 mainly uninhabited islands and cays – the largest and busiest are St Thomas, St Croix and St John.
The territory's capital, Charlotte Amalie, is located on Saint Thomas. The nearby British Virgin Islands are just a short plane and ferry ride away.
The most convenient route to St Thomas is to fly into Cyril E. King Airport (STT), which is located 3km (1.8mi) to the west of the capital, Charlotte Amalie.
By boat, Charlotte Amalie is just a 20-minute ferry ride from Cruz Bay on St John and 45 minutes from Tortola in the British Virgin Islands. St Thomas is also one of the most popular cruise ship destinations in the Caribbean.
Find out how to get to St Thomas…
Latest update: St Thomas: 4 January, 2023