Insider Tips from the BVI

After fairly busy Winter and Spring seasons in the BVI, things have slowed down a bit lately. In the wake of months like February, March, and April, when anchorages are full of families on school holidays, May and June are a time for couples to get together (often with like-minded couples) and charter a boat or go on a sailing vacation at a fraction of the peak-season cost.While May and
Author:
Updated:
Original:
BVI.interior1

After fairly busy Winter and Spring seasons in the BVI, things have slowed down a bit lately. In the wake of months like February, March, and April, when anchorages are full of families on school holidays, May and June are a time for couples to get together (often with like-minded couples) and charter a boat or go on a sailing vacation at a fraction of the peak-season cost.

While May and June are considered a “shoulder” season, most of the BVI hotspots are still functioning at or near full strength. Anchorages like the Bight on Norman Island still see their fair share of charter yachts and transient boaters. One can still do body shots and throw back water-ski shooters aboard the Willy T, then enjoy some of the best ribs in the BVI ashore at Pirate’s Bight. Rumor has it that the Willy T had banned topless jumping from the top deck, but a number of YouTube videos say otherwise. Insider tip: the Treasure Island caves aren’t nearly as busy.

After picking up a charter boat on Tortola or St. Thomas, ambitious crews often work their way to weather first (getting the hard part out of the way early), and make initial landfall in North Sound, Virgin Gorda. The relatively new Monday Night Mash-Up at the Pub at the Bitter End Yacht Club has taken on a life of its own, with DJ Heavy B spinning Caribbean tunes and brick oven pizza coming out of the kitchen. Insider tip: the real attraction is the eye-candy! The supermodel-like staff from neighboring resorts and chiseled megayacht crews visit on their party night out!

Some sailors plan their voyages according to the stars, but many charterers plan their holidays according to the moon…the Full Moon. In the BVI, Full Moon Parties are nothing new: the Bomba Shack is legendary for its monthly bacchanalia and suspicious mushroom tea. For a slightly more PG-rated experience, check out the Full Moon Party at Trellis Bay. Great music, flaming sculptures in the harbor, and fire juggling shows ashore round out an evening that appeals to a wide range of interests. The moon itself becomes a sideshow.

BVI.interior4

For those who haven’t chartered in many years, you may remember the island of Anegada as forbidden fruit. But with the advent of shallow draft catamarans and the addition of GPS chartplotters aboard much of the charter fleet, many companies are letting their guests go to “shipwreck island.” In fact, the additional visitors have led many of the island establishments to expand (in a good way) to handle the traffic. Big Bamboo at Loblolly Bay (perhaps the most beautiful beach in the BVI) has added shower facilities, a gift shop and paved breezeways. Insider tip: their lobster lunch (much like everywhere else on Anegada) is to die for.

BVI.interior5

Given its proximity to RoadTown/Tortola, it’s not uncommon for charter visitors to spend either their first and/or last nights in the anchorage at Cooper Island. Ashore, the Cooper Island Beach Club recently celebrated one year under new ownership by unveiling a new beach bar/restaurant. It’s a great place to sit back, Pussers PainKiller in hand, and reflect on a week well-sailed. Insider tip: If you ‘re looking for a keen game of darts, this is the place to go. With its tournament-quality dartboards and darts, you can’t beat the atmosphere.

Related

ntcktshtrstk

Cruising Southern New England Waters

One of the most wonderful childhood vacations I can remember was back in 1971 when my best friend invited me to his family’s summer home on Nantucket Island. For a 10-year-old kid, this was a thrilling trip for many reasons, not the least of which was the fact it was also my ...read more

IMG_8287GR16Mykonos

Cultural Charters: Mykonos

In last month’s column, I covered the amazing mix of cultures that have called the Dalmatian Coast home over the centuries. Croatia cruising is like a smorgasbord of intertwined centuries, and the islands are a movie set. A little farther south, though, you’ve also got Greece, ...read more

cookinglead

Cruising: No Oven? No Worries

Many cruising boats, especially smaller ones, don’t have a conventional oven. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t have all the baked foods you want, from bread to brownies to breakfast rolls to casseroles and even a roast chicken. All it takes is the right bit of gear and a ...read more

TOTW_PromoSite

SAIL's Tip of the Week

Presented by Vetus-Maxwell. Got a tip? Send it to sailmail@sailmagazine.com Take no chances  This is my stern with the engine running slowly in gear against the lines. We all know that when we’re charging batteries this lets the engine warm up thoroughly. However, I have a ...read more

ZK-Seaboot-900

Gear: Zhik’s Seaboot 900

A Better Sea Boot Following up on its successful ZK Seaboot 800, Zhik’s Seaboot 900 was created in partnership with team AkzoNobel and Dongfeng Race Team, the latter the overall winner of the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race. Designed for serious, long-distance offshore racers and ...read more

01-LEAD-FP-Astrea-42-Gilles-martin-rajet---Navigation

Switching to Solar Offshore

No sensible bluewater sailor would consider setting off on a long cruise these days without some means of generating power other than by burning fossil fuels. The good news is that solar energy is becoming less expensive by the day, making it an obvious answer for providing the ...read more

190812-Tiwal-Video-600x

Video: Tiwal Cup 2019

Who says you need a superyacht to have fun? It would be hard to imagine having a better time on the water than these sailors recently did racing aboard a fleet of Tiwal inflatable sloops. ...read more