The Virgin Islands are some of the most beautiful islands in the Caribbean, but travelers who want to get the most of their vacation will quickly realize that finding interesting and affordable ways to get around is the key to seeing and experiencing everything that the islands have to offer.
Air travel is always a popular option because it is usually fast and convenient. However, travelers heading to the the BVI should plan on taking a little extra time to arrive. There are no direct flights from the U.S. to the British Virgin Islands due to the lack of developed airports. In fact, most travelers fly via the the USVI to the British. If you can't find a connecting flight from the U.S. Virgin Islands to the British group will most likely be directed to the islands via , Antigua, or Sint Maarten.
Chartering a private plane so you can island hop is a lot more common and affordable than you might expect -- and when you can't get a hold of a plane, a helicopter is an option as well. Caribbean Wings, Fly BVI, and Leeward Islands Air Transport are popular charter companies, and Island Helicopters are who to contact for a helicopter charter. Read more about traveling by plane to the the BVI by clicking here.
Located in a popular sailing belt, the BVI benefits greatly from sailors who come from all over the world. Some will just be passing through, anchoring for the night before continuing their voyage, while other will stay and enjoy the shallow calm water and warm sun. It is also not uncommon to see sailing events take place on the islands either; so if you are an active sailor, be sure to contact the various marinas and clubs for the most up to date information.
For some additional information on marinas, anchorages, and the general ins and outs of sailing in the the BVI, you are encouraged to read our BVI Sailing Guide.
While it may not get the same kind of attention as its American neighbor, the the BVI is still a prime spot for anyone looking for a cruise vacation. Centered around Road Town on Tortola, the cruises will give you a sampling of what the Caribbean Islands have to offer. Additionally, If you are having trouble deciding between the US or British Islands, many cruises will take you to both, so stay on the lookout for a good cruise if you are interested.
Even in a tropical paradise you will need to get around, especially if you want to see everything there is to see. Renting a car will give you the independence to explore on your schedule. Of course, this also means you will be responsible for following the rules of the road and to get directions ahead of time. Also keep in mind that while some areas like Road Town are fine for cars, other like Anegada, can make renting a car a little rough.
Learn more about the circumstances surrounding renting a car in the BVI by clicking here.
For many people, renting a car is unnecessary. If you just need transportation from the airport to your accommodations, and maybe the occasional ride into town, a taxi is likely to suffice for you. Just keep in mind that unlike the daily cost of rental cars, taxi fares can fluctuate based on the time of day, traffic, weather, and the general mood of the driver. If you do plan on utilizing the taxi service, it is recommended that you read our more thorough BVI Taxi Guide, where you will find information on routes, rates, and other important facts.
The buses that operate in the the BVI, are open-air, safari-style buses that are notorious for neglecting a regular schedule or route. They are affordable and exciting but should be considered an amusing diversion, not a primary mode of transportation to be relied upon.
Island-hopping is a favorite activity of vacationers and locals, and ferries and charter boats are an ideal way to see it all. Plenty of local ferry companies run from island to island making it easy for travelers to explore both the British and U.S. Virgin Islands. Rates are based on your destination and can vary from $3(USD) to $50(USD). Charter boats are also available, bareboat for those who want to exercise their navigation skills or crewed for visitors who prefer the foremost island luxury.
As you can see, there are plenty of options when traveling to the the BVI. But this is also because the various islands are all different – what works well on Tortola may not be the best bet for Virgin Gorda. So take your time and think of that you will need for your trip. Only then should you make a definitive choice on transportation.
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