The Baths of Virgin Gorda have instilled awe in visitors for hundreds of years. Massive granite boulders are jumbled together to form primordial, cathedral-like structures surrounded by turquoise, azure and electric blue Caribbean water. Several cool, inviting, shaded grottos caressed by the tide and sea foam dot the area. A marked trail winds through this natural wonder leading guests on a self-guided tour over rock and sand. Most people enjoy the sights barefoot usually because they snorkeled ashore from tour boats, yachts or six-pack rentals. Water shoes or sandals may be more comfortable but require more planning to carry if the visitor is wearing snorkel gear.
Moorings and anchoring are possible around the Island and the nearby Virgin Gorda yacht harbor may have slips available.
St. John, in the U.S. Virgin Islands is an ideal base for your island hopping adventures. It’s easy to pick up an trip with a tour operator or charter a six-pack boat or yacht. Organized tours often offer more amenities like free snorkel gear, fresh water showers, wet bar and bathrooms. Often it’s rewarding to meet fellow travelers on organized excursions and sharing the vacation experience.
Boat rentals and charters allow more autonomy and flexibility but the cost may be steeper. Most boat rentals in the Virgin Islands are designed for 6 passengers. You’ll be hiring the entire boat so if there are only 2 passengers, your cost will be divided by 2 instead of 6. Be sure to ask for a quote that includes fuel estimates and tip for the crew.
During peak season, large Caribbean cruise ships lead tours to the Baths and may result larger groups on Virgin Gorda but don’t let that dissuade you from visiting. Crowds are not uncommon for areas of spectacular beauty and the Baths aren’t any different. Most of the time, crowds are small and they will not have a negative impact on your experience. If you are on a privately rented or chartered boat, it’s worth checking out nearby Fallen Jerusalem Island. Mammoth boulders give the appearance of a destroyed ancient city give this British Virgin Island its name. Fallen Jerusalem is more secluded than Virgin Gorda and offers some excellent snorkeling.
Whether you choose to charter a private boat or join a group trip, you’ll be very happy with your decision to visit the Baths at Virgin Gorda. The massive boulders and assure grottoes will stay with you for a lifetime.