Why the U.S. Virgin Islands Make for a Great Family Vacation

Family Vacation on the USVI

The U.S. Virgin Islands are known as “America’s Caribbean Paradise”. The islands are where travelers go to see a Carnival parade and smell the homegrown spices from the locals. Families can travel to either St. Thomas, St. John, or St. Croix. Some might even decide to see all three islands and enjoy the unique characteristics each one has to offer. And a bonus that most families enjoy is that everything can be paid using U.S. dollars.

Each island has something unique and different to offer visitors. St.Thomas is called “Rock City” for the hilly, rugged horizon. But it’s also known for the luxury — it’s hard to miss the yachts in the harbor or the high-end storefronts when exploring the area. Just a short ferry-ride east, St. John is more of a honeymooners paradise, but also caters to nature lovers. With more than 7,000 acres of dedicated parkland and surrounding beaches, there are many outdoor activities to keep busy with. Further down south in the Caribbean Sea, the less-visited St. Croix has sugar cane plantations and rum distilleries that provide a glimpse into both the past and the present of the Virgin Islands.

 

Ease of Getting There

American’s traveling to the USVI don’t need a passport, cutting out a big process for those who don’t have one yet. The pristine beaches, world-class snorkeling, diving, and deep-sea fishing, rich history, and large range of accommodations for couples, families, and adventurers of all kinds makes the U.S. Virgin Islands an easy escape from daily life. Several major airlines travel non-stop to the USVI, including Jetblue, American Airlines, Delta and Spirit.

When to Go to the U.S. Virgin Islands

All of the islands have temperatures in the 70s and 80s throughout the year, and most of the rainfall happens during hurricane season, which is generally between September and November. The best (and driest) time to visit the U.S. Virgin Islands is December through March or April. Travelers are more likely to enjoy sunny skies and perfect beach temperatures. This is also a great time for families to travel, as kids are off from school for holidays, winter break, and spring break.

Year round weather on the Virgin Islands
A graph showing the year round temperatures at Charlotte Amalie in the Virgin Islands (from https://weatherspark.com/y/28234/Average-Weather-in-Charlotte-Amalie-U.S.-Virgin-Islands-Year-Round)

 

Family Activities in the U.S Virgin Islands

Easy-to-access beaches, family resorts with swimming pools, and tons of fun things to see and do — St. Thomas, St. John, and St. Croix have become a family destination because of all the kid friendly activities. Parents and kids of all ages will enjoy many opportunities to make memories together. Below are some ideas to consider when traveling with a family!

Hiking in the National Park

Take a trek with your kids in a stunning nature reserve that covers two thirds of St. John island. Join the Park Rangers for both a fun and educational walk through of this intricate tropical ecosystem. Kids will learn about all the different aspects of nature while getting some energy out at the same time.

 

Horseback Riding

If your kids are a little bit older and open to having an adventure, horseback riding in the U.S Virgin Islands should be added to your itinerary. Check out Carolina Corral for exciting horseback riding experiences. This is among one of the favorite kid friendly activities in the U.S Virgin Islands.

Horse riding with Carolina Corral at St John


Boat Charter

All three islands have an assortment of boat excursions that are perfect for kids. Sign up to take a boat trip for a half day or full day and island hop from beaches to bays and even coral reefs. Most boat trips even supply lunch on the boat as well as snorkeling equipment.

 

Sea-Trekking

Children as young as eight can try sea-trekking, which is an experience where you wear an astronaut-type helmet, climb down a ladder to the bottom of the sea, and walk along the ocean floor. Kids love getting an up-close-and-personal look at underwater life while being able to breathe easily.

Sea Trekking in St John

Jeep Safari

A jeep safari makes it possible for the whole family to explore much more of the island. Drive through the tropical forests, the scenic shoreline, and stop at historical ruins, tide pools, and breathtaking lookouts. This tour will be an experience that your family will talk about for many years.

These are just a few kid friendly activities in the US Virgin Islands, but it’s clear why they make the best Caribbean destinations for families. No matter what activities you end up deciding to do, the USVI is kid friendly and welcoming for all.