10 Things You Shouldn’t Miss On Virgin Gorda

Ahhh, Virgin Gorda. This hilly beauty is rumored to have been named “The Fat Virgin” by Christopher Columbus who, upon approach, thought the profile of the island resembled a plump lady lying on her side. At 8 square miles, it is the 3rd largest island in the British Virgin Island chain, and although it offers a variety of luxurious resorts and villas and one of the highest rated beach attractions in the world, it still somehow maintains it laid-back island feel.

Are you planning to spend some time on this beautiful island? Here is a list of 10 Things You Shouldn’t Miss On Virgin Gorda to help you start your planning.

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1. Hike the Trail Through The Baths
Giant boulders surrounded by crystal clear, blue water. The path takes you through a maze of boulders and calm, turquoise pools of water where you can spend hours lounging and exploring. The path leads to Devil’s Bay – another stunning white sand beach. See Exploring the Baths of Virgin Gorda

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2. Top Of the Baths
After exploring The Baths and Devil’s Bay, make a stop at the Top of The Baths for a little shopping a dip in the freshwater pool and a delicious rum cocktail with a beautiful view of Sir Francis Drake Channel and Tortola in the distance.
Find out more about the Top of the Baths here

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3. Spring Bay
Just north of The Baths is another great beach and area to explore. Same huge boulders, more crystal clear water and a few less people. Sound good? It is…

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4. CocoMaya Restaurant & Bar
After a full day of sun, salt water and fresh air, there’s nothing better than watching a colorful sunset with a cold drink in hand from a cushy chair around a beach campfire – well, technically a gas fire pit, but it’s a beautiful atmosphere nonetheless. CocoMaya is located on the beach  just south of Spanish Town. We hear the food is pretty awesome as well.
Find out more about CocoMaya here

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5. Saba Rock
Technically located in the North Sound of Virgin Gorda, this private island offers a lot in just less than an acre. Saba Rock boasts not only a famous over-the-water lounge bar and restaurant, but also an 8 bedroom hotel, 10 slip marina, gift shop, gardens and sun deck. Go for dinner, the views, and a famous Saba Rock Banana Daiquiri.
Find out more about Saba Rock here

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6. Leverick Bay
 Leverick Bay is a Resort & Marina located on the North Sound of Virgin Gorda. Laid back, colorful and fun, this is a great place to dock a boat, rent a suite, enjoy a scenic dinner at the Restaurant at Leverick Bay or sip a rum punch while savoring a roti at the beachside Jumbie’s bar.
Read more about Leverick Bay here

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7. Michael Beans Show
This musician, sailor and showman puts on a “Happy Arrr” musical pirate show at Jumbies at Leverick Bay Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from 5-7 pm during the season. The entertaining two hour show includes a lot of audience participation and good clean pirate fun for the whole family.

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8. Hog Heaven
Hog Heaven is a Bar & Grill sitting high atop Virgin Gorda with an absolutely beautiful view of the entire North Sound. If you have the chance, take the drive up the hill to enjoy a plate of delicious BBQ, a Blondie Special (a rum drink named after the owner) and a spectacular view of the entire North Sound, including Necker Island, and on a clear day, Anegada.
Read more about Hog Heaven here

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9. Rent a Dinghy and Tour North Sound
Got a full day to explore? Rent a dinghy from Leverick Bay (call ahead to reserve one – they sell out) and take your time exploring all that beautiful North Sound has to offer, including Bitter End Yacht Club, Saba Rock, Prickly Pear Island,  and Fat Virgin Café. Our rental instructions included a warning – seaplanes have the right of way!
Read What to See and Do In North Sound here

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 10. Hike Virgin Gorda Peak
To be honest, you can get some almost as good views of both sides of the island (without hiking) from the road that takes you to the trailhead, but making the trek to the top is worth it to check out the foliage (seems odd to see cactus on a tropical island!) and to burn off some of the amazing rum drinks you’ve probably been enjoying in paradise. Best to go on a clear day for the best views (as  you see, we didn’t), and bring water and a snack. It takes about 50 minutes to get to the summit and there are picnic tables at the top.

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BONUS –
Savannah Bay
From the moment we first sailed past this pretty beach, we knew it would be one of our favorites. Usually very quiet; it’s a long arc of soft, light sand fringed by gorgeous turquoise water. Great place to put your toes (and more!) in the water…

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Find many of the places mentioned above on our Virgin Gorda Map

To see more posts on Virgin Gorda and other islands, check out our Island Blog Directory

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Perfect Vacation Memory – Virgin Gorda

What’s a perfect vacation memory? You know the one your mind wanders to when your day gets a little too stressful? Well, of course it’s different for everyone, but ours usually has something to do with a beautiful beach…and rum…

A few years ago, while staying on-island in this beautiful villa on Virgin Gorda in the BVI, we packed our beach bags and set off for the day to beautiful Spring Bay, a next door neighbor to The Baths. We spent the day lounging in the crystal clear water, exploring the massive boulders and simply soaking in the sun.

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And, as if that weren’t perfect enough, after getting our beach fill for the day, we made our way to CocoMaya, where we ordered a Zacapa 23 on ice and a Pinot Grigio, sat with our toes in the sand around a fire pit at the waters edge,

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and watched a gorgeous sunset over Tortola.

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Great memory of a great day on a beautiful island.

Do you have any great vacation memories from Virgin Gorda? Share them with us!

Find Spring Bay and CocoMaya on our Virgin Gorda Map

To see more posts on Virgin Gorda and other islands, check out our Island Blog Directory


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What to See and Do in North Sound, Virgin Gorda

North Sound is an area of water on the northern tip of Virgin Gorda that is edged not only by Virgin Gorda, but by the  smaller islands of Moskito, Prickly Pear and Saba Rock. North Sound not only offers protected anchorage, lovely resorts, good dining options and watersports, it is a visual treat with beautiful green hills and colorful villas set against it’s stunning blue waters.

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View of North Sound, Virgin Gorda

View of North Sound from Hog Heaven Bar & Grill, high atop Virgin Gorda

While parts of North Sound, such as Leverick Bay and Gun Creek, are accessible by road, many of the other places shown on the map are accessible only by water. A small ferry carries passengers from Gun Creek to Bitter End and also to Saba Rock for dining. Otherwise, dinghy’s and small motor boats are the transportation of choice to explore as much of the area as you can.

If you’re lucky enough to be able to spend some time in North Sound, here are a few things you might want to check out.

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Leverick Bay Resort & Marina

Leverick Bay has accommodations, a small grocery store, a couple of gift shops, two restaurants – Leverick Bay Restaurant and The Cove – and a Bar/Restaurant called Jumbies. Enjoy a rum punch and roti at Jumbies under the shade of a thatched umbrella with your toes in the sand.

During the high season, be sure to check out Michael Bean, the singing pirate, who performs during Happy Arrr Monday through Thursday. On Friday nights, the huge Mocko Jumbies show up for the beach party.

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Michael Bean, The Singing Pirate

Dinghy’s can also be rented for the day from Leverick Bay Marina, but be sure to call ahead to see if you can reserve one. Read about our visits to Leverick Bay here: Leverick Bay, Virgin Gorda

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Fat Virgin’s Cafe

Leaving Leverick Bay and traveling east past Gun Creek, you’ll spot a little dining spot right on the water named Fat Virgin’s Cafe. Stop by and say hi to owner Esther and order some delicious conch fritters and rum punch. Tasty West Indian-cuisine, friendly people, a gift shop, good drinks and a beautiful view make this a place worth stopping.

Behind Fat Virgin’s Cafe lies the luxury resort – Biras Creek. Accessible only by boat or helicopter this gorgeous resort is the ultimate secluded escape. If you want to dress up (check the dress code) for an excellent dinner experience, call for reservations in the main restaurant a Biras Creek. You’ll be treated to spectacular food and views.

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Bitter End Yacht Club

Just north of Biras Creek, is yet another amazing resort – The Bitter End Yacht Club. Bitter End offers accommodations, fine and casual dining, a sailing school, and a wide variety of water sports and activities. Rent a Hobie Cat and glide across the turquoise waters of the Sound, then stop by the Crawl Pub for a cold beverage and a game of pool or foosball.

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Saba Rock

Saba Rock, a small rock oasis in between Bitter End and Prickly Pear Island, is a popular stop for boaters for it’s  great food and lively bar with comfortable seating – all at the waters edge. Saba Rock also offers a boutique hotel, a small marina, a gift shop and a great view of Eustatia Island. Banana Daiquiris are a Saba Rock specialty and the Anegada Lobster Dinner  is top notch.

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View of Eustatia Island from Saba Rock

See more in our post entitled Saba Rock, British Virgin Islands.

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Sandbox Bar & Grill, Prickly Pear Island

Continuing around the Sound you’ll run into Prickly Pear Island. Vixen Point is one of the best beaches in the area and is also the home of Sandbox Bar & Grill. Play volleyball on the beach, swim in the calm blue water, or just pull up a chair and catch some rays. Lunch, dinner and drinks are available at Sandbox.

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Rum Punch on the beach at Sandbox

Take the hiking path from Sandbox to North Beach, another beautiful beach on Prickly Pear Island with good snorkeling and beautiful views of Eustatia and Necker Islands.

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View of Moskito Island from the dinghy

To round out your day of exploring, dinghy past Moskito Island. This island was purchased recently by Sir Richard Branson who also owns the nearby Necker Island. He has plans to turn Moskito Island into an eco-resort that will use renewable energy.

Have you had the chance to explore the beautiful North Sound of Virgin Gorda? What were the highlights of your time there?

 

Find many of the places mentioned aboveon our Virgin Gorda Map


To see more posts on Virgin Gorda and other islands, check out our Island Blog Directory

 

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Pictures and other content may not be re-used without written consent from Rum Therapy, LLC

CocoMaya Restaurant and Bar, Virgin Gorda

Toasting the evening at CocoMaya, a beautiful restaurant and bar in Virgin Gorda…

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Enjoying cocktails in the evening at CocoMaya, Virgin Gorda


Although we love re-visiting some of our favorite places in the islands, we also love to find and experience new ones – and then share them with you!

We’d read just a little bit about a new restaurant/bar on Virgin Gorda and during our last BVI visit, we were able to stop and experience CocoMaya.

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Approaching CocoMaya from our boat

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CocoMaya Restaurant and Bar, Virgin Gorda

Established in 2011 and not far from Spanish Town, we found CocoMaya to be a real treat. We were able to spend one evening there and enjoyed relaxing in the outdoor lounge with our toes in the sand around the fire pit.

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Comfortable lounges surrounding the fire pit

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Enjoying the evening at CocoMaya

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The outdoor lounge area at CocoMaya

CocoMaya’s outdoor lounge is an excellent place to meet up with friends or just cozy up on a lounge chair for two around the fire.

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CocoMaya’s beautiful bar, complete with a couple of swing benches

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Reflection of the bar at CocoMaya

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Dining area at CocoMaya

CocoMaya’s decor is appealing and relaxing and blends right in with the tropical surroundings.

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Dining at CocoMaya with a view of the beach and sunset

Wonderful aromas were wafting from the dining area and if we didn’t already have dinner planned upon our return to the boat, we would have enjoyed one of their menu offerings in the open air dining room with a beautiful view of the beach and sunset.

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Relaxing in the outdoor lounge, CocoMaya

Although we certainly didn’t mind just spending time on a lounge chair for two on the beach with a soft tropical breeze and the warmth of the fire on our toes…

To find out more about CocoMaya Restaurant and Bar:

Visit their website

and Facebook Page


Find CocoMaya on our Virgin Gorda Map

copyright©Rum Therapy Beaches, Bars & More, Tropical Travel Guide, 2013, 2014
Pictures and other content may not be re-used without written consent from Rum Therapy, LLC

Exploring The Baths, Virgin Gorda

What’s it like to hike the trail through The Baths on Virgin Gorda? 

A couple of weeks ago we had the chance to take another great hike through the boulders of The Baths to Devils Bay in Virgin Gorda. It was our 4th time to experience this amazing area and although there had been some changes made since our last visit, it was just as intriguing and awe-inspiring as ever.

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The Baths, Virgin Gorda

Beach access has been limited to dinghy’s – which I’m sure is due to the large amount of people wanting to access the trail from their boats. If you are unable to swim about 50 yds from the roped off area where they’d like dinghy’s to drop boaters off, they are recommending that you go ashore at Spanish Town and take a taxi over.

We thought we’d just add a few new pics to the post we did of our last visit (The Baths), but we took a lot more pictures this time of the actual hike through the boulders from The Baths to Devil’s Bay, so we thought we’d write a new post and highlight what it’s like to hike the trail.

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Entrance to the trail through The Baths

It was high season and we knew The Baths would be packed from about 10 – 3, so we showed up at about 3:30. Our dinghy dropped us off at the ropes and we swam to shore – electing not to take towels or even shoes because of the swim in. Previously we wore water shoes and I’d recommend them if you’ve got sensitive feet.

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Sign at the entrance to the trail

The initial entrance is but a small opening between two large rocks. Once through it opens up to a trail. Look for small cairns (rock piles) marking the trail as you go.

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One of the most photographed areas of The Baths is called The Cathedral

Not too far from the start you come across The Cathedral – one of the most photographed areas of The Baths. It looks different every time you visit depending on the light and the tide.

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Using a rope attached to the rock to maneuver their way through a tricky spot

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Crystal clear pools of water between the colorful rocks

There’s another cool area to explore around every corner.

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One of the wooden ladders on the trail

Make your way over the boulders and through the pools with the assist of wooden ladders and platforms along the way.

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Part of the trail through the mammoth boulders

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Making our way up another ladder

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Boulders and clear pools

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Not much farther now

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Taking time to enjoy the sunshine and scenery

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Directional sign on the trail

Once you get to this directional sign, you’re almost to Devil’s Bay.

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Getting to the end of the trail

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Devil’s Bay, Virgin Gorda

You’re rewarded at the end of the trail with the sights of beautiful Devils’ Bay. Be sure to leave enough time to enjoy the clear, blue water before making your way back – or up to The Top of The Baths for a well deserved beverage!

 

Find The Baths on our Virgin Gorda Map


To see more posts on Virgin Gorda and other islands, check out our Island Blog Directory


copyright©Rum Therapy Beaches, Bars & More, Tropical Travel Guide, 2013, 2014
Pictures and other content may not be re-used without written consent from Rum Therapy, LLC

Leverick Bay, Virgin Gorda

We first set eyes on Leverick Bay in the North Sound of Virgin Gorda in 2006 when we moored there for a night during our first BVI sail. Enamored by the beautiful colors, water and amenities there, we’ve returned twice and hope to again this spring.

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Since 2006, Leverick Bay has done a major expansion to its marina and is now a favorite spot for boaters to stop and stay awhile. Or, if you wish to stay on island, Leverick Bay has its own accommodations and many of the rooms overlook the beautiful bay, North Sound and Mosquito Island.

Why do we like this area so much? Let us show you through some pictures we’ve taken during our visits.

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View of the restaurants from the marina. Fine dining is available on the upper floor and a pub-style eatery called The Cove is on the lower level.

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Looking at the marina from the beach. Guests can use the lounge chairs or rent water toys.

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A pool next to the restaurants. Other amenities include a couple of gift shops, a small supermarket/deli, spa services, tennis and boat rental.

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This pic was taken before the marina expansion but shows the gorgeous color of the water and marina buildings.

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The Telephone Booth Shower on a dock in the marina

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A map of the BVI on the side of the watersports building showing the location of Leverick Bay Resort and Marina.

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Nick’s Weather Forecast for the day! Nick is the general Manager of Leverick Bay Resort & Marina and is quite the funny and personable guy. We got the chance to briefly visit with him when we checked out a dinghy to explore North Sound and he was working the shop for one of his employees.

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Jumbies Beach Bar. We enjoyed some tasty beverages and chicken roti while lounging around Jumbies.

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The bar has several tiers of seating and a very comfortable hammock to lounge the day away in.

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You can meet some new friends from all over the world at Jumbies

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Enjoy a few more drinks by the waterside

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And, if you’re visiting during the high season – January through May, be sure to stop by Monday through Thursday from 5 – 7 p.m. at Happy Arrrr!

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To hear Michael Bean – the singing pirate!
(photo: Leverick Bay FB
)


Want to see more of the island from Leverick Bay? Take a taxi or rent a car to tour the island (see The Baths and Savannah Bay), rent a dinghy to zip around North Sound (check out Prickly Pear Island and The Sandbox) or take the water taxi from Leverick to Saba Rock.

Quiet, but not too quiet…Leverick Bay is a great place to hang out and relax on Virgin Gorda.


Ready to go?

Find out more on the Leverick Bay Website


Find Leverick Bay on our Virgin Gorda Map

To see more posts on Virgin Gorda and other islands, check out our Island Blog Directory

Copyright©Rum Therapy Beaches, Bars & More, Tropical Travel Guide, 2014
Pictures and other content may not be re-used without written consent from Rum Therapy, LLC

Top Of the Baths, Virgin Gorda

If you work up a thirst while roaming The Baths in Virgin Gorda, you can make a stop at Top of the Baths – a bar and restaurant with a freshwater swimming pool and gift shops.

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All that – and a fabulous view of some of the gigantic boulders of The Baths, beautiful Sir Francis Drake Channel and Tortola.

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Top of the Baths is open for breakfast and lunch and serves up some really good frozen rum drinks as well as great desserts. Be sure to try Evanette’s Key Lime Pie and the Homemade Coconut Cruzan Rum Cake…

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And enjoy your rum with a view….

Find out more on their website: Top of the Baths

Find Top of the Baths on our Virgin Gorda Map

To see more posts on Virgin Gorda and other islands, check out our Island Blog Directory


copyright©Rum Therapy Beaches, Bars & More, Tropical Travel Guide, 2013

Pictures and other content may not be re-used without written consent from Rum Therapy, LLC

Savannah Bay, Virgin Gorda

Savannah Bay, Virgin Gorda – one of the British Virgin Islands most beautiful beaches… A long crescent of powdery white sand with calm turquoise waters – a true beach lovers experience.

Last year, during an on-island stay in Virgin Gorda, we made our way back to Savannah Bay. Heading north on N Sound Road, we stopped at the overlook of Savannah Bay. Looking past Savannah Bay from the overlook,  you can also see Pond Bay and Mahoe Bay.

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The barely visible thatched umbrella in the lower middle of the picture is on Savannah Bay Beach right off of the small parking lot.

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Parking is available in a small dirt parking area close to the beach. Turn in to the parking area at a dirt road between the overlook of Savannah Bay and the V in N Sound and Nail Bay Road. We’ve never seen more than two other cars there during our visits and this gorgeous stretch of beach is usually peaceful and uncrowded.

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Apparently Savannah Bay is usually quite calm and flat. The first time we visited, the surf was rough and we didn’t venture into the water, but walked the beach and sat in the sand marveling at the beauty.

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Upon subsequent visits, the water was as calm as it could be and we spent hours swimming, floating and snorkeling in the crystal clear water.

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Not as busy as some of the other very popular beaches on Virgin Gorda, such as The Baths, Savannah Bay has quickly become one of my favorites on Virgin Gorda for its shear beauty, solitude and peacefulness. Oh, and the snorkeling is pretty great too!

Besides a small parking area and are a few thatched umbrellas for shade there are no amenities at Savannah Bay (just like we like it!).
PERFECT for a little Rum Therapy (rum, sun and total relaxation…)

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Have you been to Savannah Bay, Virgin Gorda yet?

 

Find Savannah Bay on our Virgin Gorda Map

To see more posts on Virgin Gorda and other islands, check out our Island Blog Directory


copyright©Rum Therapy Beaches, Bars & More, Tropical Travel Guide, 2013

Pictures and other content may not be re-used without written consent from Rum Therapy, LLC

Sandbox Bar & Grill, Prickly Pear Island, BVI

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On a beautiful white sand beach on the uninhabited Prickly Pear Island in the BVI, sits a great little beach bar called Sandbox Bar & Grill. In the picture above, taken from Hog Heaven, which sits high atop Virgin Gorda, you can see North Sound, Prickly Pear Island and Sandbox. Sandbox is only accessible by boat.

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During our most recent visit to Virgin Gorda, we rented a luxurious dinghy (last one available – that’s what we get for not planning ahead!) from Leverick Bay Resort & Marina and set off to explore the beautiful North Sound.

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Sandbox was our last planned stop of the day, so we tied up our dinghy at the dock at Vixen Point and scurried ashore to check it out.

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There were just a few people sitting at the bar that early afternoon, but the bartender said it would soon be VERY busy as a huge private party was was making their way to Sandbox from the Bitter End Yacht Club for some fun in the sun, beautiful water and the white sand.

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Due to the incoming party, there were a lot of beach chairs situated that day on the beautiful beach.

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Since we still had the place nearly to ourselves, we picked out a prime spot and ordered a really tasty Rum Punch.

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We enjoyed the beautiful view of the North Sound, all the boats, and watched a seaplane land in the water not too far away. If we had more time, we would have really loved to take the hike on the path from Vixen Point around the salt ponds to what we heard were two more beautiful and secluded beaches on the north shore of Prickly Pear Island – another reason to go back I guess…

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Having arranged ahead of time which one of us would be the designated dinghy driver that day and to avoid a DDD (drunk dinghy driving), we thought it best to stop at one Rum Punch (although we REALLY wanted another!) As we made our way back to the dock, we noticed that it was starting to get busy at the Sandbox.

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As we headed back to Leverick Bay (with Mosquito Island off to the right), we realized just how many great things there are to see and do in the North Sound area and how we’d love to come back and stay for a week, a month, or maybe a lifetime??

Find Sandbox (and Prickly Pear Island) on our Virgin Gorda Map


To see other posts on Virgin Gorda and other islands, check out our Island Blog Directory

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Pictures and other content may not be re-used without written consent from Rum Therapy, LLC

Saba Rock, British Virgin Islands

Saba Rock is a small, private island that sits in the beautiful North Sound of Virgin Gorda.

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Saba Rock is less than an acre in size and accessible by boat or ferry. We first visited Saba Rock during a sail trip when we stopped for just a few minutes to get gas and ice. During a recent trip to Virgin Gorda, we wanted to get back to Saba Rock to experience more of it, so we rented a dinghy from Leverick Bay Marina. By having a dinghy for the day, we were also able to explore neighboring Prickly Pear Island and enjoy a rum beverage at the Fat Virgin Cafe.

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Saba Rock houses a restaurant – which we hear serves up succulent land & sea dinners, an over water lounge/bar, a boutique hotel, a full service marina, gift shoppe, 10 deep water slips and boat moorings.

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View of Eustatia Island from the terrace at the Saba Rock Hotel
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Saba Rock has a ferry that will pick you up from several locations in the North Sound, such as Gun Creek and Leverick Bay – just call them to make arrangements.

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Out back they have an excellent area to relax and enjoy the view of North Sound and the Bitter End Yacht Club, with nice soft sand and hammocks.

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We spent some time lounging in the hammocks before heading back in to sample a Saba Rock Banana Daiquiri – recommended to us by a friend who thought they were absolutely the best around.

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They were pretty darn good and the view made it even better…

To find out more, visit their website: Saba Rock

Find Saba Rock on our Virgin Gorda Map

To see more posts on the British Virgin Islands and other islands, check out our Island Blog Directory

 

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Pictures and other content may not be re-used without written consent from Rum Therapy, LLC