Francis Bay Beach

A great family beach, you'll often see groups grilled out during the afternoon, but it is never overly crowded and in fact is often considered to be a private beach.

Set toward the center of the island of St. John, Francis Bay Beach is on the North West edge of the island, You should consider dropping by even if you aren't staying very close. The Virgin Islands' beaches are pretty busy for the most part, however, Francis Bay Beach is tamer than most, making it just the right spot for vacationers who aren't fond of huge throngs of tourists.

How to Access The Beach

From Cruz Bay, take Route 20 towards Maho Bay. The road there turns away from the shore where you'll continue for about a mile and a half until you reach an intersection. Turn to the left, and you'll find parking at a stone building. The trail from there will take you to the beach.

Amenities and Ambiance

The beach faces the west, which means calmer waters that are great for snorkeling.

Unfortunately, restrooms will not be available here, so those of you traveling with small children may want to consider another spot. You'll find the waters off-shore to be of good snorkeling quality, so bring your gear if you want to check out what lies beneath the surface.

Since Francis Bay Beach is located inside a major tourist area, you might need to hunt to get a spot!

What's Nearby


Beachgoers will find Francis Bay Beach on the North West coast of St. John. Windberg Ruins is situated a half mile away, and it is among the attractions in the vicinity.

Beaches and museums may seem an odd combination to some, but many travelers find that museums like Ivan Jadan Museum (situated four miles to the south west) offer a fun learning experience and a new way to experience the Virgin Islands' culture.

The beach is one type of attraction you can visit, but there's plenty else to see during your stay. The following table includes the closest attractions.

Activities and Attractions Near Francis Bay Beach
Attraction Type Distance Direction Island
Windberg Ruins Historical Site 0.5 mi. SSE St. John
Fredriksdal Plantation Ruins Historical Site 0.6 mi. ESE St. John
Fredriksdal Ruins Historical Site 0.6 mi. ESE St. John
America Hill Ruins Historical Site 0.8 mi. SSW St. John
Annaberg Plantation Historical Site 0.9 mi. E St. John
Cinnamon Bay Plantation Ruins Historical Site 1.1 mi. SW St. John
Catherineberg Ruins Historical Site 1.8 mi. SW St. John
Petroglyphs Historical Site 2.2 mi. S St. John
Emmaus Moravian Church Historical Site 2.2 mi. ESE St. John
Denis Bay Ruins Historical Site 2.2 mi. WSW St. John
Par Force Estate Ruins Historical Site 2.3 mi. S St. John
Reef Bay Sugar Factory Ruins Historical Site 2.4 mi. S St. John

Cities and Towns

Coral Bay is the closest city to Francis Bay Beach. It is not heavily urbanized, though it makes for a nice, quiet day trip for those looking to check out the local scene. From the coast, Coral Bay isn't far off, maybe two miles (three and a half kilometers).


The number of other people sharing spots in the sand can vary widely, it depends on several things: the season, the weather, even how many people have booked nearby hotels. This spot is not near many large hotels, but it's sometimes enjoyed by visitors from the few small lodgings in the area.

Visitors will find a fairly good range of hotel and resort options to pick from in the area around the beach. The closest of which have been listed below.

Accommodations near Francis Bay Beach
Hotel Distance Direction Type
Caneel Bay Resort 3.1 mi. WSW Resort
Trinidad Charlie's Cottages 3.2 mi. SW Lodge
Estate Lindholm 3.9 mi. SW B & B
Westin Resort, St. John 3.9 mi. SW Resort
Inn at Tamarind Court 3.9 mi. SW Hotel
St. John Inn 4.0 mi. SW Hotel
Cruz Bay Boutique Hotel 4.1 mi. SW Hotel
Hillcrest Guesthouse 4.1 mi. SW Guest house
Garden by the Sea 4.2 mi. SW B & B
Coconut Coast 4.3 mi. SW Hotel


One of the best ways to round off a laid-back trek to the beach is to visit a nearby restaurant, where you'll be able to dive into the Virgin Islands' specialty dishes, without having to go far. One of the nearest places to eat is T'ree Lizards Restaurant. This restaurant offers both American and Caribbean cuisines. You could take a cab or probably walk to this restaurant as it's just a little ways away.

The table below lists dining options located near this beach.

Restaurants near Francis Bay Beach
Restaurant Name Phone Cuisine Style Distance Direction
T'ree Lizards Restaurant (340) 776-6330 American, Caribbean Very Casual 1.1 mi. SW
Pickles in Paradise (340) 693-5140 American Very Casual -- --
Sweet Plantains (340) 777-4653 Caribbean, Creole Very Casual 2.3 mi. ESE
Indigo Grill (340) 774-4433 Caribbean Very Casual 2.3 mi. ESE
Coral Bay Cones -- Eclectic Very Casual 2.3 mi. ESE
Coral Bay Caribbean Oasis (340) 774-1030 Caribbean, Soul Food, Vegetarian Very Casual 2.3 mi. SE
Aqua Bistro (340) 776-5336 Caribbean, International Informal 2.4 mi. SE
Skinny Legs (340) 779-4982 American Very Casual 2.4 mi. ESE
Gwen's (340) 642-0338 Caribbean Very Casual 2.9 mi. SW
Shipwreck Landing Restaurant & Bar (340) 693-5640 American, Caribbean Informal 2.9 mi. SE
ZoZo's Ristorante (340) 693-9200 Italian Fine Dining 3.1 mi. WSW
Turtle Bay Estate House (340) 776-6111 Contemporary Fine Dining 3.1 mi. WSW

Other Beaches

St. John has many nice beaches, so if Francis Bay Beach doesn't sound like your type of scene, you have options.

Travelers who like this beach might also enjoy Great Cruz Beach, situated a brief car or taxi trip away. On the other hand, Maho Bay could provide a little more opportunity for excitement, and is closer to other popular destinations. You'll find it a half mile to the south.

Travelers may also want to consider Scott Beach, which is located three miles away.

While the area offers plenty of picturesque views and exciting attractions, Francis Bay Beach is both a beautiful natural attraction, and a fun hangout spot.


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