Answers from Our Experts (1)
From frolicking in the waves to exploring pirate lore, the U.S. Virgin Islands knows how to show kids a good time. Here are Forbes Travel Guide’s picks for the five best things to do with your little ones in America’s Paradise:
1. First and foremost, get your kids to the beach. At St. John’s Cinnamon Bay, rent windsurfers, Hobie Cats and other watersports toys, or tour the newly renovated Virgin Islands National Park museum, situated right along the shore. St. Thomas’ Secret Harbour Beach offers everything a family could want for a day of fun in the sun: calm, clear waters; plenty of shade; an onsite restaurant and beach bar; and snorkel gear as well as canoe and kayak rentals. At Chenay Bay on St. Croix, your kids will delight in discovering the starfish and conch that live on the beach’s grassy bottom.
2. There’s lots of fascinating sea life to be found in the Virgin Islands’ waters, but it can be hard to visit multiple snorkel and dive sites, especially when your children’s schedule dictates the vacation itinerary. Enter Coral World Ocean Park on St. Thomas, where kids can observe fish in their natural environment from 15 feet below in an undersea observatory. They can even pet starfish and sea cucumbers.
3. St. Croix’s beautiful landscape just begs to be explored, and one of the best ways to experience this tranquil environment is via horseback. Paul & Jill’s Equestrian Stables is kid-friendly, welcoming everyone from first-timers to more experienced riders. Trot through the rainforest or beach for an excursion your kids won’t soon forget.
4. Ice sculptures are probably the furthest thing from your mind when you’re vacationing in the Caribbean, but one of St. Thomas’ newest attractions, Magic Ice, is one of those you-have-to-see-it-to-believe-it types of experiences. Magic Ice offers both a respite from the island sun and some incredibly impressive works by world-famous ice sculptors. In this 10,000-square-foot former warehouse, you’ll find cool sculptures that highlight the Caribbean’s history, including shipwrecks and lighthouses.
5. Your child will be fascinated by the history of pirates in the U.S. Virgin Islands, and one of the best places to experience the islands’ swashbuckling past is St. Thomas’ Blackbeard’s Castle. Walk among bronze and copper statues of pirates, learn about rum production and take in breathtaking views of the Charlotte Amalie Harbor.