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 Islands Information

Place: St. Croix

A St. Croix Vacation   by Jennifer Weiss

Part of the Caribbean jewel that is the U.S. Virgin Islands, St. Croix allows for a tropical adventure unlike anywhere else you could imagine. With its world-class recreational activities and stunning beaches, anyone looking for a place to unwind and relax while enjoying boundless beauty will find that a vacation in St. Croix is exactly what they needed. Make your way to St. Croix for your next getaway vacation and soak in the warm weather and abundant indoor and outdoor activities this gorgeous island has to offer.

As the largest of the US Virgin Islands, St. Croix certainly has a lot of terrain to explore and experience. Lush forests make up a large part of the land and although most of the vibrant rainforests are privately owned, you can head over to the western side of the island to access a few acres of public land. Soak in the air that wafts by with the light scent of fruit, listen to the sounds of the mountain doves overhead, and walk along the trials as you view Tibet and mahogany trees. Before you are ready to move on, however, be sure to order a sculpture from one of the local artists who works with these trees so you can have a unique and thoughtful souvenir.

Touring the entire island is an excellent way to begin your vacation so you can get a feel for the background and rich history that surrounds you. You can find standing sugar mills, with their massive towers and factory chimneys, that represent the sugar and rum history that has shaped the life and land of the island since the arrival of Christopher Columbus. To learn more about the history, head over to the St. George Village Botanical Gardens, which contains the ruins of a rum distillery, a sugarcane plant, and the buildings that were used to house the workers. Numerous plantation estates, particularly on the west end of the island, rest in the shadows of these sugar mills so be sure to stop by the Estate Whim Plantation to view one of the greathouses that defined St. Croix's image.

For a memorable outdoor adventure, make your way to the Buck Island Reef National Monument located just north of St. Croix. As the only underwater national park in the United States, visitors can enjoy the vibrant and stunning elkhorn coral barrier reef by booking a snorkeling or scuba diving excursion with one of the companies operating from Christiansted. In the waters off Buck Island, you can swim in the clear water in search of endangered species such as Least Terns and sea turtles and make your way through the marked underwater trail near the eastern tip.

There are essentially two towns on the island, Christiansted and Frederiksted, and each boasts cultural attractions that simply cannot be missed by any visitor. Walking through Christiansted, visitors may be struck by the old world charm that emanates from the 18th century buildings of its Danish settlers. The European heritage is alive and well with the red tile roofs, pastel colors, and cobblestone sidewalks that can viewed on walking tours that take visitors past the waterfront. Frederiksted is on the west end of the island and moves at a much slower pace than the more lively Christiansted. Here, visitors will find Victorian architecture, fine restaurants, and historic churches that remain from the days when it was a prominent shipping port.

For those who want to enjoy the white sands, the warm tropical breeze, and the clear ocean water, accommodations that sit directly on the beach are exactly what you need for a relaxing vacation in the Caribbean. There are numerous St. Croix vacation rentals with not only stunning views of the ocean, but also easy access to all the fun and excitement the beach has to offer. Whether you want to take a sunset stroll along the beach or soak up the warm St. Croix sun, all you need to do is take a few steps out the backdoor and there awaits any possibly waterfront adventure. For the ultimate in amenities and breathtaking surroundings, consider an oceanfront St. Croix rental to experience a truly memorable island vacation.

About the Author has the most comprehensive selection of vacation rental homes on the Internet. For an alternative lodging option, consider St. Croix vacation rentals for your next trip to the Caribbean.