Part 3 and the final part to my St. John, VI, travel reviews! The previous parts were talking about the beaches, food and accommodation; today is all about the tips I can give you to really enjoy your time over there. Some of these tips you can actually apply anywhere you travel 🙂
Here’s also a video of our trip over there with some of the things you can expect.
Let’s get to it!
To get to Saint John, you’d have to land in Saint Thomas and then take a ferry from there. So be prepared that you’ll be on two different islands. You can rent a car at St. John but I would suggest renting a car from Saint Thomas and go on the car ferry (ferry times are every two hours). Car ferry fee: $25 ($50 for a round trip). The reason I suggest renting a car is because you could go exploring on your own on both islands even if you’re staying on one.
In Saint John the taxi is like a tiny open truck with couches in the back. It charges a minimum of $5 and it goes on a route with certain stops so I, personally, feel like it’s restricting you. There’s a public bus that goes from one end of the island to the other for just $1 so you could do that. Here’s a link to the St. John, VI, taxi services: http://www.stjohnusvi.com/gettin.html
Research the time of when you’re going. It usually rains but lasts for less than an hour. That being said, you don’t want to go during rain season. There will be more mosquitoes than the usual and that’s not so great when you’re trying to enjoy your time but end up scratching and hurting yourself. Which brings me to the next tip.
Carry bug spray with you because there are some mosquitoes at night and if you go out during the rain there will definitely be mosquitoes out and about waiting for their next victim. If you do carry bug spray or any sort of repellent, PLEASE get some that are natural. You don’t want to poison yourself nor the environment around you.
It’s pretty safe and secure in St. John. We usually leave things lying around but you also don’t want to carry so many valuables all the time. You don’t really need anything with you except for your camera and wallet (even that you don’t really need, you can take a few 10s with you for any rentals or entrance fees). When you’re on the beach if you’re going to leave your stuff and go swimming, just put everything in a bag and you should be fine. Again, don’t take anything valuable with you if you’ll be leaving it around and going somewhere else. You can get these waterproof bags from Amazon and put everything in them.
Or click this link: http://amzn.to/2rWcbDN
Wear fins when snorkeling so that you don’t get tired from swimming so much. There’s a small shack where you can rent the fins for just $6 for 24hours. I don’t remember the name but it’s all on the same road that has many shops and shacks on the way to the beaches; you can’t miss it. You can also find many of those shacks on some of the main beaches. If you don’t wear fins, wear those snorkeling shoes because you do NOT want to step on a sea urchin (for your sake as well as the sea urchin’s sake), and also some of the rocky beaches aren’t good with flip flops.
Keep a paper map in the car because at certain points there is hardly any network so you’ll need to follow a map. You could also download google maps and have it work offline you could see where you’re going. That’s another reason why you don’t really need to carry something as valuable as your phone with you unless you’re using it as a map or using it’s camera.
Like I said before, the island is pretty safe. There will be lots of hitch hikers and it’s okay to take them with you. The island isn’t so big and there’s only a few routes to take so it’s definitely not a hassle to take a few people with you on your way.
I’ve mentioned this before a blog post about tips when traveling and I really cannot stress it enough…Put on NATURAL sunscreen because the generic types kill the corals 😦
For parking, the island is pretty chill.. You could really park/throw your car anywhere that doesn’t have a “no parking” sign and you walk to any beach. It’s that simple.
ALWAYS DRIVE ON THE LEFT SIDE. Depending on where you come from, maybe you’re used to driving on the left side, but for someone coming from the U.S it was a surprise haha. They’re nice though.. they have signs on the street and stickers on the car windshields to remind you to stay on the left.
That’s pretty much it! Have a great time over there and let us know if there’s something to add 😀