20 Best Things to Do in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands

St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands

Welcome to my world, where the turquoise waves gently lap against sugar-sand shores, and the vibrant hues of the Caribbean sunsets seep into every corner of your vision.

This is St. Thomas, a gem amidst the U.S. Virgin Islands, where every day feels like a slice of paradise.

I wake up to the rhythmic dance of palm trees against the coastal breeze and fall asleep to the soothing symphony of the ocean.

The island is my home, playground, and sanctuary, beckoning with a promise of serenity blended with exhilarating adventures.

So, buckle up because I am about to take you on a virtual tour through the 20 best things to do in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands!

About this article: This article was written by a local contributor based on their own experiences and those around them. While this list showcases some remarkable places, it's important to note that this is an opinion piece, and there are many other exceptional places to visit that are not featured here.
Our aim is not just to guide you to popular places but to encourage you to venture out and experience the city for yourself.

Explore Drake's Seat

View from the Drake's Seat
Viktor Hladchenko / Shutterstock.com

One of the pleasures of living in the Virgin Islands is the convenience of enjoying breathtaking views without even trying.

Drake's seat is one of those places that, even for someone like me who sees it every day, never loses its sparkle.

It's the sort of place you find yourself when you need a moment to escape from the world while still being grounded in its beauty.

Parking my car in the lot, you can already feel the anticipation of what awaits you.

The climb to the top is somewhat of a ritual for me; the higher you go, the more anticipation builds.

But nothing can prepare you for the sight that greets you at the top.

The panoramic views of Magens Bay and the surrounding islands are stunning.

It's a sight that never gets old, no matter how many times you've seen it.

Drake's Seat at St Thomas
FloNight (Sydney Poore) and Russell Poore, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

On a clear day, you can see across many of the US and British Virgin Islands.

There's nothing quite like watching the sun setting over the tranquil waters, casting long shadows over the islands, and turning the sky into a canvas of vibrant colors.

Another thing you can't miss is the dolphin encounters happening down below.

Seeing the dolphins swimming and playing in the waters is heartwarming.

And if you're feeling peckish, you can always grab a bite at the bar overlooking the pools.

The food might not be the best, but the view is worth it.

Regardless of how many times you visit, Drake's Seat always has a way of making you feel like it's your first time.

Discover the Community's Roots at the French Heritage Museum

It was just another ordinary Monday morning in July when I decided to visit the French Heritage Museum.

Standing tall amidst the bustle of modernity, this institution is a testament to our shared past.

You can genuinely feel the echoes of history as you walk through its doors.

Having lived in the Virgin Islands my entire life, I found it fascinating to delve deeper into the French influence on our local culture and history, which is beautifully depicted here at the museum.

An engaging tour guide, a delightful lady, took us through the museum.

With each artifact, she breathed life into the stories of Frenchtown, transporting us back in time.

The museum houses many local items that glimpse the past, and the quaint little house captured my attention.

It felt like it had a story to tell, a story of the people who once called it home.

Personal histories displayed throughout the museum were intriguing, grounding me even more in the cultural roots of our community.

In my opinion, the museum's significance goes beyond just being a repository of antiques.

It's a place that fosters understanding and appreciation of our community's rich French heritage.

I was glad to see it well-maintained, the preservation of our history still given its due importance.

But the French Heritage Museum isn't just about Frenchtown history; it's also a tribute to the era of exploration that brought French explorers to this area.

It's a celebration of the audacious spirits who ventured into the unknown, forever altering the course of our history.

Have a Bird's Eye View from Charlotte Amalie Overlook

View of the Charlotte Amalie Overlook
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Living here in the Virgin Islands, there's no shortage of natural beauty.

But one place that always takes my breath away, no matter how many times I visit, is the Charlotte Amalie Overlook.

Each visit reminds me of how lucky I am to call this paradise my home.

Navigating the bumpy road to the top can be quite an adventure, especially for those not fond of heights.

The anticipation builds as you ascend higher and higher, but the moment you reach the top, all those feelings are replaced with sheer awe.

The view from the Charlotte Amalie Overlook is so overwhelming that it silences all your fears.

It's like seeing the island through the eyes of a bird, with a panorama of the Virgin Islands laid out before you.

In the daytime, the sun glistens on the turquoise waters, creating a vibrant view like a painting.

Lift chairs at Charlotte Amalie Overlook
SCStock / Shutterstock.com

At night, the islands are illuminated, creating a contrast with the dark sky that is simply mesmerizing.

It's a view you need to see to believe, and no words or pictures could do it justice.

There's also a certain rhythm to the place that you just can't ignore.

You can hear the sweet melody of the local steelpan music floating in the air, perfectly complementing the serene atmosphere.

This is also a place where art thrives.

Murals, painted so beautifully they almost seem alive, adorn the walls, adding a dash of color against the backdrop of the sky.

The Overlook also serves as a hub for local vendors. Here you can find unique and interesting items made by the talented hands of the island's residents.

It's a great place to support the local community and take home a piece of the Virgin Islands.

Iguana at Charlotte Amalie Overlook
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Have a Fun Experience at Tree Limin' Extreme Zipline

Rising with the morning sun, I took advantage of the beautiful day by heading to Tree Limin' Extreme Zipline, my favorite adrenaline-pumping spot in St. Thomas.

Nestled in our rainforest and offering magnificent island views, it's no wonder this lively zip-line attraction is so popular.

Zipping between the multiple platforms scattered high among the trees, I felt like a bird soaring.

Every time I do this, the thrill is as intense as the first.

The cool wind rushing past my face, the lush greenery blurring into a sea of emeralds, and the spectacular views of the bays, it's an experience that never gets old.

Soak under the Sun at Magens Bay Beach

Magens Bay Beach on a bright sunny day
Sasha Buzko / Shutterstock.com

Every Sunday morning, without fail, I pack up my bags with sunscreen, beach towels, and homemade sandwiches and head towards my little slice of paradise - Magens Bay Beach.

Upon arrival, the shimmering white sands and crystal-clear waters never fail to take my breath away, no matter how many times I've seen it.

The large and spacious beach allows plenty of room to spread out and relax.

There's something so serene about having the space to enjoy the picturesque beauty without the usual throng of tourists.

I usually arrive early, around 7:45 a.m., just as the sun begins warming the sand.

It's the perfect time to set up my beach chair and umbrella before the beach fills up.

The waters are calm and warm in the morning, perfect for a refreshing dip.

If you're a fan of snorkeling, I suggest bringing your gear along.

Stunning view of the Magens Bay Beach
Yingna Cai / Shutterstock.com

I've enjoyed snapping amazing photos of the sea turtles that inhabit the bay.

Once I'm settled, I'll either swim or indulge in a game of beach volleyball, a favorite pastime among the locals here.

When hunger strikes, there's a concession stand nearby serving up some excellent local food and drinks.

Their painkiller cocktail is an authentic island concoction that will refresh you on a warm sunny day.

As the day winds down, I make it a point to stick around for the sunset.

It's one of the most breathtaking views, the sky painted in hues of orange and pink, reflecting off the calm waters.

A woman admiring the beauty of Magens Bay Beach
Martina Birnbaum / Shutterstock.com

Walk Through the Pirate History at the Pirates Treasure Museum

As I stepped through the doors of the Pirates Treasure Museum, I was immediately transported into the world of pirates.

The museum, conveniently located and easy to get to, is a trove of unique and intriguing artifacts pulled from the ocean's depths.

I was fortunate enough to catch the VIP tour during my visit, which I highly recommend.

It provided information and fun facts about the piracy era I never knew.

The artifacts on display are truly a sight to behold.

They have everything from timeliness to ships, all of which have been preserved remarkably well.

The museum even houses beautiful coins and pottery, some dating back to the B.C. era.

The fact that all these treasures were found under the sea is astounding.

The museum is also highly interactive, providing hands-on activities and videos that keep you engaged.

I thoroughly enjoyed learning how to tie various pirate knots!

It's one thing to watch but another to partake in the activities that pirates may have done centuries ago.

As a testament to the museum's quality, I found the place spotless.

The restrooms and facilities were just as clean as any high-class establishment.

Experience the Serenity at Lindquist Beach

View of the serene Lindquist Beach
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One of my favorite haunts on our beautiful island is Lindquist Beach.

Many a Sunday, you'll find me lounging there with a picnic basket and a good book.

The beach, nestled within a 21-acre park, is one of our island's treasures.

Safety is assured with a lifeguard always on duty, and the facilities include picnic tables and bathrooms for public use.

The waters are a snorkeler’s delight - you just have to swim a little out of the designated area to find beautiful reefs teaming with marine life.

You'll discover a vibrant underwater world to the right and to the left of the beach.

I have seen a myriad of fish, turtles, and even stingrays!

It's an experience that never gets old.

Horse riding in Lindquist Beach
Jacob Boomsma / Shutterstock.com

However, note that there aren't any food or drink shops here, so it's smart to pack your refreshments.

And don't forget your beach umbrella, as shade is sparse on the beach itself.

Parking might need a little walk, but I always find it worthwhile.

In fact, they have a neat system where you can drop your people and gear off close to the beach before parking the car.

Scenic sunset at Lindquist Beach
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Revisit History at St. Thomas' Sand-Floored Synagogue

Entrance to the Hebrew Congregation of St. Thomas
Wangkun Jia / Shutterstock.com

I've always been a history buff, and living here in St. Thomas, I'm surrounded by centuries of rich heritage.

One of my favorite places to escape when I crave a quiet moment with the past is the Hebrew Congregation of St. Thomas.

The serene journey up the hill is a small price to pay for the chance to step into the second-oldest synagogue in the Western Hemisphere.

The moment I cross the threshold, I'm welcomed by a sand floor that whispers tales of ancient traditions.

It's a unique feature, this sand floor, and learning about why it's there never fascinates me.

Inside, the synagogue holds more than just religious services; it's a living museum, a tangible representation of our shared history.

View of the St. Thomas' Sand-Floored Synagogue
Smallbones, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

Often, I find myself lost in the synagogue's museum section.

The walls are adorned with information and photos that tell a story of resilience and faith.

Every visit unveils a new chapter, a previously unnoticed detail that adds depth to the narrative.

The beauty of the synagogue isn't reserved just for those who share its faith.

It's a testament to the richness of our island's history, a beacon of architectural elegance, and the past's enduring presence in our present.

Whether you are Jewish or not, the Hebrew Congregation of St. Thomas is worth a visit if you appreciate such things.

Spend a Day at Sapphire Beach

Rocky shore of the Sapphire Beach
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There's something magical about stepping onto the white sands of Sapphire Beach on a sunny morning.

The beach is a gem located on the Island of St. Thomas, and it's my home and my paradise.

It's not just the clear, calm waters that make this beach special; it's also the vibrant yet relaxed atmosphere.

It's perfect for anyone, whether you're looking for an adrenaline rush or a peaceful afternoon.

I often start my day by snorkeling through the coral areas.

They are teeming with life, and it's always a delight to see the myriad of colorful tropical fish swimming about their business.

The seagrape trees are a unique feature of our beach. They provide a cool shade, perfect for escaping the midday sun.

Waves crashing on the shores of Sapphire Beach
eskystudio / Shutterstock.com

And right on the beach, there's a quaint little coffee and ice cream place.

I often grab a scoop of their delicious homemade ice cream to beat the heat.

As the day progresses, the beach comes alive with music and laughter.

Live music, full moon parties, and friendly faces make it the place to be.

Yes, it does get crowded, especially during weekends.

But the beach is spacious enough that it never feels claustrophobic.

For a change, I like to take a Jeep and explore the less crowded beaches.

But I always find myself returning to Sapphire Beach.

Turtle at the Sapphire Beach
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Have Fun at The Virgin Islands Children's Museum

Every small town has its hidden gem; for us, it's the Virgin Islands Children's Museum.

Nestled in the heart of St. Thomas, it's an oasis of learning and joy, especially on those rainy days when the beaches are off-limits.

I've seen the spark of fascination in my toddler's eyes each time we enter this small yet wonderful museum.

The place is like a treasure trove of adventure for little ones - and it's right here in our hometown!

The museum captivates young minds with its playground area.

It seems completely magical, and my four-year-old's squeals of delight are a testament to that.

The interactive exhibits make learning a captivating experience.

Not an easy feat to accomplish, but this museum does it with incredible ease!

While the facility is small but filled with activities that engage and entertain children.

We usually spend about an hour there, and it’s the perfect time for my toddler to explore everything and enjoy it thoroughly.

And at just $10 a person, it's an affordable way to have a day of fun and learning.

If you want to give your kids a fun-filled day without overwhelming them, this museum is a must-visit.

The way it caters to children, especially those under eight, is truly impressive.

It's a fun, safe, and educational outlet where children can be children and their curiosity is given free rein.

Unwind at Coki Point Beach

Serene water at the Coki Point Beach
Yaris RV / Shutterstock.com

I've always been one who loves the beach.

Not just any beach, but one with crystal clear water and vibrant marine life, just like Coki Point Beach.

You see, once you've lived here long enough, you learn to embrace the tranquil rhythm of the waves and the colorful burst of the underwater world.

This small, picturesque beach is a haven for me.

Early morning, before the tourists start pouring in, it's my sanctuary for yoga and meditation.

Throughout the day, the calm, clear water and the rocky reef area make it a popular spot for snorkeling.

You wouldn't believe the amount of marine life I've seen here – from rainbow-colored fish to the occasional octopus!

A small cafe at the Coki Point Beach
byvalet / Shutterstock.com

But what I love most about my local beach is its sense of community.

There's always something going on here.

Families come with their kids to play on the inflatable raft while adults relax on inflatable loungers.

There's often music playing, and of course, plenty of food and drink options.

Sure, the vendors can be a tad aggressive, but once you get to know them, they're part of the charm of Coki Point Beach.

Scuba divers at Coki Point Beach
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Explore the Coral World Ocean Park

Exterior view of the Coral World Ocean Park
Gruepig, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

When you’re lucky enough to live on a Caribbean island, you don’t have to venture far for an incredible experience.

One such gem that I visit often is the Coral World Ocean Park.

This marine park, spread across 5 acres, is full of enthralling activities and aquatic life that amazes me.

One of the most memorable parts of my visit is the sea lion experience.

The trainers here have a fantastic connection with their sea lions, ensuring their happiness and well-being at every step.

They make the experience interactive, allowing you to witness the beauty of these creatures up close.

Still, the cherry on top was when they sent me the pictures of my encounter - the wait was worthwhile.

The dolphin show is another spectacle that always leaves me in awe.

The grace with which the dolphins glide through the water is a sight to behold.

It seems like a beautifully crafted dance that never fails to capture the audience's hearts.

A scuba diver examining the fishes at Coral World Ocean Park
Malachi Jacobs / Shutterstock.com

What’s more, you can also lock eyes with sea turtles swimming around - a delightful experience.

For thrill-seekers like me, the underwater sea trek is a must.

It’s a unique experience where you walk on the seabed, surrounded by colorful marine life, with the help of a special helmet.

I have sensitive ears, so the pressure was a bit uncomfortable for me initially, but the guides were very considerate and ensured I was comfortable throughout the journey.

But what sets Coral World apart is its commitment to education.

From the dedicated staff who patiently answer every question to the informative displays about marine life, every visit is a learning experience.

You learn about unique creatures like Risotto, the blind bird, or Loki, the dolphin who underwent a skin graft from a pig.

Seeing these animals receiving top-notch care from such a warm and knowledgeable team is heartening.

Sea Lion at Coral World Ocean Park
Gruepig, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Stroll Through Phantasea Tropical Botanical Garden

Every morning when the sun rises, I take a walk.

It's a walk that takes me through a paradise on earth, the Phantasea Tropical Botanical Garden.

What started as a daily routine has become a source of joy, inspiration, and learning.

Walking along the pathways, I'm surrounded by a symphony of colors and textures.

I marvel at the radiant orchids, whispering palms, and resilient succulents.

Turtles meandering along the paths, birds serenading from the treetops, and the occasional iguana basking in the sunlight.

It's nature's orchestra performing a symphony, and the botanical garden is the stage.

Although my home is nestled on a hillside, I try to visit Phantasea Tropical Botanical Garden.

Yes, it can be steep and challenging, but the beauty that awaits is worth every step.

The gardens are well-maintained, and the restrooms are clean and accessible.

The garden shop is a treasure trove of unique and exotic plants.

See the Panoramic View of the Bay at Paradise Point

View of the cruise ships from Paradise Point
ackats / Shutterstock.com

I often find myself hitching a ride on the Skyride to Paradise Point.

There's something undeniably captivating about being whisked away from the hustle and bustle of the streets and into the sky.

As you make your way up the 700-foot ascent, the panoramic view of the bay seems to unfold before your eyes in the most breathtaking way.

The gondola ride is a quick and smooth journey, ideal for those spontaneous decisions to grab a bite with a view.

In no time, you find yourself at an elevation high enough to make you feel as though you are on top of the world.

The restaurant at the top is the perfect place to relax and soak up the view.

Their food and drink offerings are just as delightful as the scenery -- nothing like a cold drink and a meal with a view!

The friendly faces of the staff always add to the experience.

A table on the cafe at the Paradise Point with a spectacular view
elvirkins / Shutterstock.com

Folks around here are so used to sharing this paradise with visitors that they have turned hospitality into an art form.

One of the best things about Skyride is the flexibility it offers.

You can book a one-way trip if you fancy a strenuous hike downhill or a round trip if you just want to take it easy.

The prices are reasonable, and if you are into history, you can add an entry to the pirate museum to your ticket.

Riding the gondola lets you see the island from a different perspective.

You can see the ships docked at the port, the topography of the land, and even spot your own house if you're lucky!

It truly is a view that pictures fail to capture.

Unwind at Brewer's Bay Beach

View of the Brewer's Bay Beach
Sean Pavone / Shutterstock.com

The moment I step onto Brewer's Bay Beach's white sands, I am reminded why I adore this place so much.

The crystal clear water, free from rocks and debris, contrasts the hustle and bustle of city life.

The scent of the clean, salty air mixed with the sweet aroma of blooming tropical flowers is nothing less than mesmerizing.

Being a frequent visitor to the beach, I've spent countless hours exploring its underwater world.

Believe me, when I say the snorkeling here is simply out of this world.

Sea turtles, sting rays, and many colorful fish have become my underwater companions.

While the coral may not be as vibrant as in other spots, the presence of sea turtles more than makes up for it.

I remember hopping on the public bus one day and meeting a group of enthusiastic biology students.

They were as captivated by the beach's natural beauty as I was.

The bus ride is a mere 4 bucks round trip - quite a steal for such a spectacle!

Brewer's Bay Beach is also home to a couple of food trucks.

I swear by the chicken and beef panes from the second truck.

Take Pictures of the Bluebeard's Castle

As someone who has shared the same island with the 17th-century building of Bluebeard's Castle, I can tell you there's much more to it than meets the eye.

The building, with its preserved old architecture, may strike some as dated, but for me, it’s a living testament to the rich history of St. Thomas.

Walking into my room, I am always welcomed by a remarkable harbor view from the balcony.

The vibrant colors of the rooms complement the scenic vistas, offering a unique ambiance that blends the old with the new.

Each room is spacious and equipped with a handy kitchenette, a feature I've come to appreciate for those days when I prefer a home-cooked meal over dining out.

Strolling around the property, the pool and hot tub area is a particular favorite of mine.

It's complete with a mini bar, a larger bar with tables and chairs, and beach chairs with small tables for an afternoon cocktail.

While the drinks are a bit pricey, I can assure you they're worth every penny.

One thing that truly sets Bluebeard's Castle apart is the proximity to local amenities.

It's just a 10-20 minute journey to some of the island's beautiful beaches, and taxi and vehicle rental services are conveniently close.

A supermarket is nearby for those who prefer to prepare their meals.

Dip in the Serenity of Lindbergh Bay Beach

Visitors relaxing on the Lindbergh Bay Beach
Ramunas Bruzas / Shutterstock.com

My regular visits to Lindbergh Bay Beach never disappoint me.

It's a refreshing oasis, just a stone's throw away from the airport.

I often find myself there, soaking up the sun, my toes burrowing into the soft, warm sand.

The beach is always clean, thanks to efficient stewardship and the availability of trash cans at every nook and cranny.

Yatch at Lindbergh Bay Beach
Ramunas Bruzas / Shutterstock.com

It's something I appreciate, being a stickler for cleanliness myself.

When the sun starts to set, it paints an awe-inspiring tableau of colors across the sky.

The breathtaking view is one of those moments that make me feel grateful to be living in such a picturesque corner of the world.

Getting to the beach is easy as pie.

A short five-minute taxi ride from the Crown Bay cruise port, which usually sets me back by just $6, brings me to the entrance of my tropical paradise.

It's never too crowded, which allows me to find a quiet, peaceful spot every time.

Chairs available for sun bathing at Lindbergh Bay Beach
Ramunas Bruzas / Shutterstock.com

Go Swimming at Coki Beach

Corals at the Coki Beach
David Samuel / Shutterstock.com

Nothing quite compares to taking a stroll down Coki Beach.

The ethereal beauty of the white sand against the cool aqua water is a sight to behold.

It’s my sanctuary, a haven where I can escape the hustle and bustle of life.

Coki Beach isn’t just for the eyes; it's also a treat for aquatic enthusiasts.

The calm waters are perfect for snorkeling.

You can find an astonishing array of colorful fish; feeding them is a delightful experience.

Having these creatures weave around your fingers in the clear turquoise water is a surreal feeling.

But do remember, the place can get crowded, especially when a cruise ship docks, usually between 10 am to 2 pm.

Beautiful view of the Coki Beach
Jennifer Stanford / Shutterstock.com

The beach also offers chair and umbrella rentals, which can quickly add up but are worth the comfort.

Every visit is a mini-vacation for me, lounging on an umbrella-covered chair, watching the waves gently lap the shore.

It’s a small price to pay for such a peaceful experience.

While Coki Beach is a picturesque spot for relaxation, it's also a lively place with vendors strolling the beach offering a variety of souvenirs and refreshments.

Not to mention the beach rentals for those looking for more adventure.

Wild Iguana at the Coki Beach
Stephen Bakin / Shutterstock.com

Final Thoughts

Living in St. Thomas is like being on a perpetual vacation.

From the adrenaline rush of ziplining at Tree Limin' Extreme to the tranquil beauty of Magens Bay Beach, the stunning vistas at Charlotte Amalie Overlook, and the rich history at places like Bluebeard's Castle and the French Heritage Museum, there's just so much to explore.

The beauty of St. Thomas is that it always keeps you guessing and leaves you wanting more.

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