Hearing the Caribbean call your family this year? The island of St. Thomas in the US Virgin Islands is a great destination for families to consider for a family vacation. Some cruises (affiliate link) make a port stop here but it’s also possible to fly in and spend more time exploring this destination. You won’t need a passport to make the trip if you’re a US citizen and its small size (around 32 square miles) means you can explore and get to know this location easily.
Visiting St. Thomas For a Family Vacation
Where to Stay
There are many options for accommodations in St. Thomas, from traditional chain hotels to all-inclusive resorts and everything in between. When deciding be sure to look at amenities that are offered, especially those that are included in the price. If a resort offers free water activities and your family would normally pay to do these things if staying elsewhere this may be the perfect fit. St. Thomas also has a few camping opportunities at The Waterfront Cottages and Apartments or Virgin Islands Campground though your experience is much more “glamping” than traditional camping!
What to Do
The number one activity on St. Thomas during a family vacation is to enjoy the plentiful and beautiful beaches. Magens Bay, Lindquist Beach, and Coki Beach are three popular beaches for families. Kids are able to feel fish swimming at their feet and enjoy crystal clear water. Older kids and adults should visit Hull Bay for great surf conditions. Sapphire Beach is the go to location for water sports like parasailing, jet skiing, fishing, kayaking, and SNUBA diving (affiliate link). Virgin Islands Ecotours offers a family centered tour featuring things like hermit crab races, a geologic blow hole and pirate’s treasure along with a safe and guided snorkel over a small piece of a shipwreck with plenty of fish, and other marine life swimming around.
The island is full of hiking trails where you can see wildlife and find 16th century sugar mills and ruins dotting the island. Head to Cinnamon Bay to learn about the Taino Indians who once inhabited the Virgin Islands. On a more historical note the Synagogue of Beracha Veshalom Hasidim is the oldest synagogue in continuous use in the United States. Fort Christian is home to the Virgin Islands Museum and not far off visitors can see the Government House, the center of government on St. Thomas. Of course if pirates are more your thing there’s Blackbeard’s Castle or Bluebeard’s castle both sites steeped in pirate lore.
What to Eat
You’ll find a variety of foods on St. Thomas and a variety of price ranges. Many upscale hotels offer on-site dining that is delicious albeit pricy. On the opposite end of the spectrum you’ll find street vendors and beach bars cooking local favorites on the spot for a steal. Caribbean cooking is a mixture of indigenous diets, European influences, African flavors, imports from North America, and cultural cooking form India and China – truly a melting pot! Salt fish and fish soup are popular among locals as is rice and beans, yams, fried plantains, stews.
St. Thomas is a great place for a family vacation. Whether you’re looking for a relaxing day at the beach or a thrilling day of heart-pumping activities, this US Virgin Island has it all! Love shopping? It has that too! In fact, you can find MANY amazing items, souvenirs and even things like jewelry at much lower prices than on the mainland US.
Looking for more gorgeous tropical family vacations? Check out our post on Puerto Rico!
Have you ever been to St. Thomas for a family vacation? What was your favorite part?