A British Virgin Islands itinerary is extremely flexible. The cruising ground presents myriad opportunities for enjoyment. It’s possible to go wherever the wind dictates, then pick up a mooring or drop the hook at a secluded anchorage to pass the hours snorkelling, swimming, sunbathing, reading, or walking on the beach. Most charterers choose a British Virgin Islands cruising itinerary that blends the best of both worlds: secluded anchorages and beautiful sunsets, with a bit of laid-back fun partying in the beachside bars.
Tortola Yacht Charter – 7 Day Itinerary
Cooper Island, located a short 6 nautical miles from The Moorings base at Road Town, is a beautiful island with a protected anchorage at Manchioneel Bay, and plenty of activities to offer. Ashore, Cooper Island Beach Club is the main attraction – a small resort with restaurant, rum bar, coffee shop, boutique, and lovely outdoor lounge area. The beach bar and lounge face west, making this the perfect place for enjoying a cocktail while watching a stunning Caribbean sunset.
The beach and calm waters make Manchioneel Bay well-suited for water sports, and nearby Cistern Point offers excellent snorkeling and turtle watching.
Anchoring in Manchioneel Bay, Cooper Island’s main harbour, is not recommended because the holding ground isn’t good. Moorings for a fee are plentiful, but get there early.
Dinghy dockage: Tie up on either of the jetties flanking the Cooper Island Beach Club.
Things to do
Cooper Island has a good beach for swimming and watersports. Enjoy a meal at the Cooper Island Beach Club or shop at the Seagrape Boutique. Scuba buffs will want to check out Sail Caribbean Divers, which offers dive excursions for divers of all skill levels. Of special interest are dives on the HMS Rhone, a mail steamer sunk off the west end of nearby Salt Island during a hurricane in 1867. As is the case at Norman and Peter islands, a motorboat makes early evening rounds in the mooring fields, its cheerful crew offering a variety of provisions for sale, including freshly baked bread and pastries.
Cooper Island Beach Club has moorings. No other facilities for yachts are available.
Virgin Gorda Island
Venture toward the island of Virgin Gorda, home of the world-famous Baths. The Baths are as pristine as ever, including the famous pathway leading through the giant boulders to Devil’s Bay. Top of the Baths Restaurant is open with its delightful panoramic views.
The nearby marina at Virgin Gorda Yacht Harbour offers Wi-Fi, fuel, water and ice. Radio ahead for a slip on the dock, or take a mooring ball outside the harbour and dinghy in. The grocery store is a short walk, and there are also some restaurants open nearby that can be accessed by dinghy or taxi, including the all new Snapper’s Bar & Grill, and Coco Maya which is a 10-minute walk from Spanish Town. Coco Maya is a great spot to relax with a cocktail and meal.
After departing The Baths, head for the North Sound of Virgin Gorda, an excellent overnight anchorage. Leverick Bay has moorings and a restaurant open for lunch and dinner. There is also a market here, where you can purchase ice and other provisions.
There are mooring balls available at Leverick Bay for a fee. When anchoring, holding is generally good here.
Dinghy dockage: Leverick Bay offers dinghy dockage.
Things to do
The Baths is a major attraction on Virgin Gorda, where you can explore the rock formation’s tunnels, pools, and caves. In North Sound, you are spoiled for choice when it comes to activities and photo opportunities.
Leverick Bay Resort and Marina has slips, ice, garbage disposal, and provisions available.
Get underway early and enjoy a scenic cruise to Anegada, a charter-favourite that remains just as charming as the last time you visited. Sparsely populated and rural, Anegada is 11 miles long, low, and flat, quite unlike any of the other islands in the BVI. The balmy trade winds gently sweep across its sandy shores, swaying the palms and rustling through the boughs of the pines. In the centre of the island is a series of salt ponds, beautiful and teeming with birds. A flock of pink Caribbean flamingos live on the ponds not far from the anchorages on the western end.
Take a taxi or scooter rental to Cow Wreck Beach Bar for lunch, where the locals are always friendly and beaches are world-class. Don’t miss the nearby gift shops. Visit beautiful Loblolly Bay for excellent snorkelling, and stop at Big Bamboo for a cocktail or snack. For a delightful dinner ashore, make reservations at Wonky Dog or Potter’s by the Sea to tempt your taste buds with famous Anegada lobster. The hotel, restaurant, and dinghy dock at Anegada Reef Hotel are also open for visitors.
Moorings are available for a fee in the inner harbour. Anchorages are located in the inner and outer harbours. Holding is good.
Dinghy dockage: Dinghy dockage is available.
Things to do
It’s well worth renting a car from one of several companies to fully explore Anegada, or opt for a bicycle or scooter rental instead. There are also taxicabs to get you where you want to go. Loblolly Bay on the north shore is known for its spectacular snorkelling and scuba diving in crystal clear water. Bones Bight and Cow Wreck beaches are also lovely. Fishing on the flats extending eastward from Setting Point is another popular pastime; guides are available for private charters. A sail to the island wouldn’t be complete without savouring the locally caught lobster. Potter’s by the Sea, Anegada Reef Hotel, and Wonky Dog are just a few of your dining options. Not all of the businesses on Anegada accept credit cards, so plan on paying with cash, and be sure to make dinner reservations in advance.
Ice, provisions, phones, and Internet access are available. Fun in the Sun Market is open for basic provisions. Ice is available at Li’l Bits store or Anegada Reef Hotel.
Quaint Trellis Bay welcomes you with a distinctly local vibe complete with Aragorn’s Studio artisan market. The Trellis Bay Market is open for basic provisions, ice and water. The market is also offering breakfast and BBQ lunch daily. If you are visiting the BVI during a full moon, the Trellis Bay Full Moon parties are a special highlight featuring fire balls on the water and live entertainment.
Across the channel from Trellis Bay, Marina Cay offers moorings and an outdoor patio lunch. You may also visit Scrub Island Resort for a selection of restaurants and resort amenities.
Nearby, White Bay on Guana Island is another excellent overnight anchorage option. By day, snorkel at Monkey Point and enjoy an on board luncheon. Relocate to White Bay and pick up a mooring to enjoy the solitude and a spectacular sunset. Guana Island is private, but you are free to walk the pristine white sand beach up to the high-water mark.
A number of moorings are available for a fee. Holding ground is good.
Dinghy dockage: Dinghy dockage is available at Trellis Bay.
Things to do
Spend the day at Monkey Point, Guana Island. The snorkelling is excellent, and nearby beaches make a lovely backdrop for paddleboarding.
The Trellis Bay Market has ice, drinking water and garbage disposal facilities available
Just to the north and west of Tortola, the heights of Jost Van Dyke rise majestically from a turquoise sea. With a population of a little more than 200, the island’s character is distinctly rural. No British Virgin Islands vacation is complete without a visit to Jost Van Dyke, which harbours some of our favourite seaside establishments.
Great Harbour is an excellent overnight anchorage and is home to the famous Foxy’s Tamarind Bar & Restaurant. Foxy’s boutique is open and stocked with souvenirs. A short walk from Foxy’s is Cool Breeze cafe, offering Wi-Fi along with breakfast and lunch. Further down the beach, Corsair’s offers a full menu throughout the day.
White Bay, just a short cruise from Great Harbour, is a popular day anchorage offering a beautiful beach and snorkelling along the reef. A wide selection of restaurants and bars line the beach, including the famous Soggy Dollar Bar, Hendo’s Hideout, Gertrude’s, Seddy’s One Love, and more.
A number of moorings are available for a fee. Holding ground is good. The anchorage can get crowded, so be sure you have plenty of swinging room.
Dinghy dockage: Dinghy dockage is available.
Things to do
A BVI charter wouldn’t be complete without a visit to Foxy’s, one of the more famous restaurants in the Caribbean. It’s located at the eastern end of the beach and has built a reputation over the last 40 years as a hugely popular party Mecca for world sailors. The casual ambience and friendly staff certainly contribute to its appeal, but the other patrons taking a short breather from long ocean passages also play a part in the bar‘s allure.
A short hop to the west brings you to White Bay, home to the Soggy Dollar Bar, so named for the yachties who swim to it from their boats, soaking their dollar notes in the process!
Water, fuel and ice are available at the main dock in Great Harbour. Provisions are not available at present.
Norman Island, with its popular anchorage “The Bight”, lies on the east side of Flanagan Passage with St. John in the U.S. Virgin Islands just across from it to the west. Hilly, scenic, and popular for its superior snorkelling locations, Norman Island is a highly-recommended stop on any BVI charter.
Enjoy drinks and dining at Pirate’s Bight Restaurant, serving appetizers, salads, entrees and cocktails including Pirate’s “Irma Punch”. There are plenty of mooring balls available here, and you can enjoy snorkelling at both The Indians and The Caves.
Moorings for a fee are plentiful. Anchoring in the north-east or south-east portion of The Bight outside the mooring fields is possible, but it’s easier to just pick up a mooring to avoid worries about swinging room or dragging anchor.
Dinghy dockage: Dinghy dockage is available at the Pirates Bight restaurant and bar.
Things to do
The caves at Treasure Point are a very special snorkelling location. You can swim inside the flooded indentations in the island with an underwater flashlight and observe teeming sea life in the shallow water. Just above the surface, the interior walls of the caves shimmer in purple and rust coloured orange. Nearby Pelican Island and The Indians is another major BVI snorkelling and scuba diving location.
No facilities available for yachts.
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