Tortola Tourism: Blue Seas, White Sands
If you're looking for the ultimate nautical vacation, you
should consider Tortola tourism. This gem of the British Virgin Islands is
located less than a hundred miles from Puerto Rico in a relatively-protected to
the west of the other Virgin Islands, and it is world-renowned as a key yachting
stop. From Tortola, the British Virgin Islands are governed, yachting regattas
are launched, and thousands of people every year experience the joy of
bareboating around the Virgin Islands, snorkeling, and scuba diving.
In addition to its excellent ports, Tortola is ringed with
a series of perfect white beaches, all sloping down into some of the best reefs
in the Caribbean. Down here, you'll find incredible snorkeling in blue waters,
hidden underwater passages between anemones and sponges, and the darting figures
of colorful tropical fish. You may swim with sea skates, or observe flying fish,
dolphins, and even a few whales from the deck of the many rentable ships here.
And where you find an abundance of small fish, you'll find some of the champion
marlin and other deep-sea fish the Caribbean is famous for.
White Sand Beaches the best part of Tortola Tourism?
While most Tortola tourism is brought by the boats, the
white sand beaches, thinly-populated and well kept, are among its most valuable
West End has some of the best snorkeling beaches, as well
as Smuggler's Cove, the most private of all of Tortola's beaches. While Long
Bay, the main public beach, is very reefy and more appropriate for snorkeling
than swimming, just a few hundred yards away Smuggler's Cove provides excellent
swimming. It's also harder to find an anchorage here, although it's worth
bringing a boat here if you're a snorkeler or enjoy scuba diving; off the small
island of Dead Chest are tall reefs that provide some fantastic snorkeling
East End has better swimming and surfing beaches, like
Josiah's Bay. And the Lambert Resort on Elizabeth Bay has a great swim-up bar.
Elizabeth Beach also is the widest beach by far of any on Tortola.
In the south middle section of the island, you'll find
Brandywine Beach, a clean manmade beach that encircles a bay that has moorings
for most smaller yachts. And to the north you'll find Brewer's Bay and Cane
Garden Bay, both excellent beaches for swimming and snorkeling that are
relatively remote from civilization.
Tortola Tourism and Laid-Back Caribbean Culture
Everywhere on Tortola, you'll find a distinct Caribbean
culture different from any other. If you really want a taste of this culture,
make sure you get out and listen to some of the local fungi music. Named for a
popular local dish, this blend of African and European styles incorporates
music, dance, and BVI oral history.
Check out the markets in West End as well. There are
several funky little shops there run by local artists and artisans, and you can
find excellent souvenirs there that are guaranteed made in Tortola.
Excellent Tortola Restaurants
From the Bomba Shack's crazy full-moon parties at Apple Bay
to the upscale Sugar Mill Restaurant at Little Apple Bay, you'll find
restaurants and bars for any appetite. No Tortola tourism experience would be
complete without a visit to Pussers on Frenchman's Cay (better than the Pussers
in Road Town), and a bottle of its excellent rum. Pass up the mid-range sit-down
restaurants for the many roadside stands, or the Friday fish fries out under the
giant banyan trees on Apple Bay. Make
sure you check out the restaurant reviews!
Getting to Tortola and Where To Stay
You can reach Tortola either by sea or by flying in to Beef
Island and driving across a short bridge. Flights are all routed through Puerto
Rico, St. Thomas, or Antigua. Once you get there, you'll find that regular
hotels are in short supply. You'll find rooms at some of the marinas, but most
visitors rent a villa instead, enjoying the island the way it should be enjoyed:
as if you were a native.
Click here to return to Tortola Beaches Home from Tortola tourism.