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Page Contents
Airport
Coppermine Point
Dining--The Valley
The Aquarium
The Valley

Top of the Baths
Shops-Yacht Harbour
Villas
Yacht Harbour

VIRGIN GORDA--THE BATHS
A stellar natural attraction

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Logo-BVIGuide.gif (2185 bytes)The Baths represent the stellar natural attraction of the British Virgin Islands, with exotic pools and grottos formed by giant boulders strewn across sand beaches (see video). Left border picture is from Ron Molnar's excellent Peter Island Family Vacation Report.

BathsCaveIcon.jpg (8450 bytes) Explorers will revel in the hidden rooms with shafts of light, snorkelers in the coral ledges and caves, sunbathers/ swimmers in the white sand beaches adding to the sparkling clarity of the water (photo: Lighthouse Villas). Be careful of the surge when the north swell is running but enjoy the crashing surf on the boulders!

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Dinghy Beach
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Up a short shady hiking trail is the entrance to The Baths and a breezy bar, Mad Dog. Have one of their famous frozen pina coladas--you've earned it for surfing your dinghy onto the beach without capsizing! The dinghy channel and swimming areas are marked by buoys (photo: Jere Lull).

On the beach, the Poor Man's Bar serves sodas, cold beer and snacks and Island Silhouette sells hand painted items by Virgin Gorda artists.

Devil's Bay. Lovely and less crowded Devil's Bay can be reached by a very interesting trail through The Baths or from their entrance. On calm days, scuba and skin divers can enjoy a pretty cave on its south side in 12-15' of water. Cup corals and colorful sponges encrust the walls as glassy sweepers sway in the surge. Watch for boat traffic.

Moorings are available and anchoring is possible all along the coast here. Or you can get a slip at the nearby Virgin Gorda Yacht Harbour, where the ferry arrives for land travelers.

Flag Warning System at the top of The Baths and on the beach: a red flag, is a warning not to use the moorings and no access to the beach; yellow means the moorings should be used with extreme caution; green means the moorings are available for use; and blue is a warning of jellyfish.


 

Top of The Baths
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Also at the entrance to the Baths is the elegant but casual Top of the Baths restaurant (495-5497), whose open air verandah has magnificent panoramic views. Relax with a painkiller or other frozen fruit drink in the fresh water pool designed right into the verandah. Favorites include lobster, conch and veggie burgers, lunch specials like grilled wahoo and baked chicken and such varied items as filet mignon, pastas, char-broiled fresh fish such as mahi-mahi, jerk chicken, and broiled lobster.

Touring
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Watch the moon come up over the other coast. Virgin Gorda has the effervescent purity and simplicity of what is basically a pastoral land.

A small circle at the entrance to The Baths is a good spot to call a cab or rental jeep (both at Andy's Jeeps at 495-5252).

A long 40 minute walk, or short ride, to the Yacht Harbour from The Baths.

Here also is the road to the beach at Spring Bay and the path to The Crawl, a rock-formed pool great for novice snorkelers.

Spring Bay has a small public parking lot. The trail leads down to the beaches. Picnic tables and barbecue grills sit amidst giant boulders.

After a picturesque jog in the road comes the more traditional countryside.

No, this ain't Texas!
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Just a Virgin Gorda bull beside a Organ Pipe Cactus.

Shops.
At the entrance to The Baths is an interesting group of shops.

Easy Bargains (495-5527) has clothing including colorful crop-top and The Baths motif  t-shirts, sarongs, wraparound skirts, elastic-back sundresses in island themes and beach cover-ups.

Cabibbean Flavor Gift Shop (495-5914), down the hill right next to The Baths path, has Calabash baskets, Larimer in silver, "Caribbean Colors" stone, shipwreck coins, mahogany and hibiscus wood carvings, beadware like wraps, Italian and Trinidadian jewelry, silver necklaces and metal candleholders (photo: bestofbvi).

Tropical Gift Collections (495-5380) has an eclectic collection of small gift items, Cuban cigars, t-shirt dresses and caribbean designed t-shirts and kids clothes.

TourIcon-Shops.gif (4455 bytes)Caribbean Beachtique (495-5428) has a selection of resortware, beach items and jewelry.

Villas.
The Baths area, as you might imagine, has some of the most stunning private, individually styled, rental villas.

In this beautiful coastal area below The Baths toward the Yacht Harbour, these Villas at The Baths on Virgin Gorda are nestled amongst the same rounded granite boulders that create The Baths.

The Crawl

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One of a series of beaches  below The Baths, The Crawl is fashioned out of large boulders protecting a little "lagoon" with its own reef and tropical fish, especially favored by little snorkelers (photo: Casarocalta villa).

Lodging.
See Lodging at The Baths of Virgin Gorda for more information on accommodations near The Baths.

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Virgin Gorda's
Yacht Harbour
/ "The Valley"
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Cow Hill separates The Valley from Little Dix Bay on the Beach Coast beyond. The ferry dock is pictured here and the red and green buoys lead to the Yacht Harbour. Plenty of taxis greet the ferry. The road straight ahead leads to the Beach Coast (except take the first left to Little Dix Bay) and North Sound. Turn right for The Valley and The Baths.

Day Tripping
A ferry trip (see schedules) to Virgin Gorda (see map) from Road Town offers great views of the Tortola's Channel coast from the ferry's open-air upper deck.

Just up the shore from The Baths is the Virgin Gorda Yacht Harbour, sea entrance to Spanish Town (the original capital of the BVI), now often called "The Valley," a Caribbean village whose hub is the Yacht Harbour.

A short walk to the right across a fenced-in park from the ferry dock, pictured on the far right, takes you to the Yacht Harbour complex (the two buildings pictured in the foreground) with refreshments and shopping at a number of interesting spots as well as a BVI Tourist Board office with information.

Virgin Gorda Yacht Harbour

The Yacht Harbour Marina (email 495-5500) has docking for 110 vessels. Slips are free the 1st hour, then $5 hourly (photo: Marinas.com).

Shops at the Yacht Harbour Complex

Open air safari bus
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Another touring alternative is the taxi, especially these buses, both a/c and open air made for touring. Andy's Tours offers tours big and small (email 495-5252).

Getting Around
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Sporty jeeps are a great way to tour the Virgin Gorda's beautiful countryside. Andy's Jeep Rentals (495-5252 email), which has the Little Dix Bay concession, has the especially popular model with retractable sunroof pictured here.

Other car and jeep rentals are Speedy's (495-5240), L&S Garage Taxi & Car Rental (495-5297), and Mahagony Rentals & Taxi Service (495-5469). See CarRentals.com. Four wheel drive vehicles are preferred on Virgin Gorda.

Taxi fares (one way for 1/2/3 passengers each): $5/$4/$3 around 'The Valley, $6/$5/$4 to The Baths, $30/$17/$13 to Gun Creek (Bitter End ferry in North Sound) (see schedule of rates).

Diving & Snorkeling

Resort course divers in the water for their first dive.
The place to go to dive and snorkel on Virgin Gorda is Dive BVI (495-5513 email). Divemaster and instructor Richard from Quebec makes "die-ing" great fun!
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M/V Sea Lion
Day trips to Anegada are made on this 45' catamaran.

Stevens Laundry (495-5596) has coin operated machines but also allows clothes to be left to be done.

Virgin Gorda Entertainment

Other Activities
Snorkeling is a traditional activity found most anywhere here in the islands.

Day sails are a big attraction. See La Boheme Charters and the Spirit of Anegada as well as Day Sails and Small Boat Rentals.

Sea kayaking is increasingly popular along the coast here.

Dinghies are popular rentals that charterers have available to explore intimate coves limiting sailboats keels.

Power Boat Rentals (494-5511) rents a 13' Boston Whaler to a 24' Wellcraft. Rental arrangements can be made at the BVI Apparel Factory Outlet.

Slamming dominos is popular at various bars and especially fun for older kids.

Darts are popular as well at Thelma's.

The Mine Shaft Cafe in the Coppermine area has miniature golf for families.

Next Wave Sail & Canvas (495-5623) does custom canvas work including sails and awnings. Ramona, who is the owner, makes and sells hammocks and fine quality bags such as sport and travel duffels. They also carry Moroccan carpets.

BVI Apparel Factory Outlet (494-5511), across the parking lot, embroiders clothing for many hotels and others and offers clothing including t-shirts.

Shops are concentrated around the Yacht Harbour area, especially at the Courtyard, and another building across its parking lot (both facing the Yacht Harbour), with others around The Valley nearby. All shops are at the Courtyard unless indicated otherwise. aClearGIF15h-15w.gif (829 bytes)

The Courtyard
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The Courtyard, an open air atrium, is a focal point for dining, shopping, free WiFi and entertainment.

     

Larimar & White Topaz Marina Earrings icon

By MarahLago, the first name in Larimar jewelry

  Thee Artistic Gallery (495-5104), an intimate shop across the parking lot, features jewelry, including Larimar (including MarahLago), Opal and Tanzanite gem stones, crystal ornaments, chimes, nautical prints, and wooden sculptures.
 
 

Pelican Pouch Boutique, an elegant shop, offers women's fashions such as Joseph Ribkoff designer dresses, hats by Cappelli and Betmar, sundresses by Jams World and swimsuits by La Blanca and Gottex.

Blue Banana Boutique (495-6633) offers swimsuits, cover-ups and other clothing, tropical gifts and home decor.

Margo's Boutique (495-5237) has a large selection handcrafted and other jewelry, baskets, wood sculptures and sarongs.

Bath And Turtle Restaurant

Named like old English pubs and open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, the excellent Bath and Turtle (at the Courtyard, 495-5239) offers a pub style menu-try their great stew!
Its new Rendezvous bar is on a deck overlooking the Yacht Harbour with the same excellent food, entertainment and dancing under the stars (photo: Virgin Gorda Baths).  

Rendezvous Bar

 

Wine Cellar and Bakery (495-5250), run by Ziggi and Melody, has its own bakery with oven-fresh bread, pastries such as large raisin buns, cookies and pound cake, delicious sandwiches ("best in town" according to Ziggi), hot dogs, sodas, wines, and bottled liquor.

Ocean Delight Ice Cream Parlor (495-5740) offers a variety of flavored ice creams, milkshakes, fruit smoothies, malt and Guinness shakes, ice cream bars and take away pints.

Scoops (495-5722) has unusual gifts and clothing, Diane ceramics such as decorative tiles, copper "fish" and brass moviles, picture frames made with Virgin Gorda sand, limited edition lucky lizards and animal themed sarongs.

The 'Gypsy of the Sea' is a smooth-sailing 60' Gulfstar yacht from La Boheme Charters (284-541-4861), with full days, half-days and sunset cruises for up to 12 people. Arrange the daysail of your choice. "Just show up in your swimsuit and leave the rest to us!"  
Snorkel the 'Wreck of the Rhone' or kayak around the anchorage with gear provided (photo: La Boheme Charters). Sail to Anegada with a tour and lunch at the Big Bamboo. Raise the spinnaker for trips to Marina Cay or the idyllic Sandy Cay. Open bar with conch fritters, fruit platters and hors d'oeuvres like Brie en Croute with crackers!

The Virgin Gorda Craft Shop (495-5137) has craft materials like crocheted threads and beads and crafts with straw and other local materials, such as local straw hats.

Flamboyance (495-5946), across the parking lot, has watches and a large variety of perfumes, both women's and men's, including Cartier (So Pretty and Declaration), Calvin Klein (Contradiction) and Christian Dior (Dolce Vita).

CommissaryYachtHarbourIcon.jpg (8496 bytes)The Commissary, a/k/a Spanish Town Cafe (495-5834), across the parking lot and run by Little Dix Bay, has a deli with gourmet items including sandwiches and salads made by its chefs in addition to a good selection of groceries. Seating is available at a couple of tables outside with a view of the Yacht Harbour as well as an attractive area inside in good, strong air conditioning.

Buck's Food Market (495-5423) has groceries for provisioning and the Island Drug Centre (495-5449) is a drug store.

DIVEBVILOGO.GIF (6696 bytes)Dive BVI (email 495-5513) has a variety of gift items and  clothing including swimsuits, t-shirts, baseball hats (many with the popular Dive BVI logo pictured here) as well as dive equipment sales and rentals and other dive-related items.

The Spirit of Anegada


A 44'
gaff rigged schooner, The Spirit of Anegada (496-6825) offers daysails and private charters from the Yacht Harbour to islands within a 10 mile radius, including, of course, Anegada (photo: Trip Advisor).
 
 
 

Kaunda's Kysy Tropix (495-5636) has CDs and cassettes of Caribbean and local music including:
raggae (Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, Reggae Gold 98 (also 1999), dancehall, which is Jamacian reggae (Dancehall 98), fungi (local group Lashing Dogs), soca (Byron Lee) and calypso (local group Fhase 2 as well as groups performing locally at places such as the Rock Cafe and Andy's Chateau include Mighty Sparrow, Vito Band, Square One, King Obstinate, and Onyan).

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The Valley near the Yacht Harbour

Walking Tour
The Valley's coast
on the Sir Francis Drake Channel presents a nice level 10 minute walk from the Yacht Harbour past Fisher's Cove Beach Hotel & Restaurant, the pink buildings on the right, to a 'T' at the Rock Cafe (don't let the bare front parking lot deter you from visiting the interesting deck in the back).

 

Fort Point Vista & The Aquarium

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Enclosing The Valley coast's vista toward The Baths is Fort Point at Little Fort National Park, a 36 acre wildlife sanctuary with the ruins of an old fort. A dinghy tour from the Yacht Harbour runs past the beautiful beach at Fischer's Cove to the dinghy dock and delightful dockside dining pavilion at Andy's Chateau.
The Aquarium dive and snorkel site, also called Fischer's Rocks, is the extension of Fort Point into the sea--a shallow reef shoal built of sponge-and-coral covered boulders piled up to form grottos and dens filled with sargeant majors, French grunts and blue tang (hence its name The Aquarium) as well as ledges hiding morey ells and napping nurse sharks. A great beginner's dive and snorkel site and a convenient break from shopping, but use a dive flag and watch for boat traffic.
 

Dining

Dixie's Kitchen, near the Yacht Harbour, has nice crab salad and is popular with both expats and locals.

Hiking & Driving
Separating 'The Valley' from the North Sound is mountainous terrain, including the Gorda Peak National Park with excellent hiking trails. Driving over the mountain has been described as a "airplane trip" with exhilerating views.

Thelma's Hide Out
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Along the entry road to Little Dix Bay Resort, has good local food and is a popular location for playing darts.

Coconut Junction

Angie's small and homey place across from Fischer's near the Yacht Harbour, serves three main dishes daily with authentic local sides such as johnny cakes and rice and peas (pictured with ribs).  


Rice and Peas & Ribs

 

Formerly the Big Bamboo, Chez Bamboo (495-5752), open for dinner a few steps away from the Yacht Harbour, features garden patio dining in a casual, romantic atmosphere with fine French Caribbean Creole cuisine. Dishes include Red Snapper Papillote (stewed in parchment paper with seafood sauce), Pasta Penne Jumbalaya, Steak New Orleans and Conch Gumbo. Deserts include Apple Tart Tartin and Creme Brulee.

Fischer's Cove Restaurant (495-5252, only minutes by foot, has a variety of excellent dishes from fresh grouper in mustard sauce to mango chicken and Caribbean peas (bean) soup. Its dining verandah sits right on the surf in a spectacular setting for a relaxing drink or dining.

The Crab Hole has affordable West Indian items like callaloo, rice and peas, johnny cake, conch fritters, salt fish, and roti. To get there, take the first left before the 'T' at Rock Cafe, and go past the first speed bump, taking the next left on a dirt driveway.

 

'T' on The Valley Coast Road

 
Turn left at the 'T' to go to The Baths, another 20 minutes or so. Turn right and go a block to the Post Office on the left and 'The Aquarium' out on the reef.

 

 


 

Roadside Grazers
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Sleek brown cows buried in the rich, dense foliage next to the post office.

Toward The Baths a short distance is RTW, Riteway's wholesale outlet for serious provisioning.

RTW, Riteway's wholesale outlet (495-5228, fax 495-5572)(on the way to The Baths), offers strictly cash and carry selling cases and minimum quantities (usually sets of threes) for serious provisioning.

Near the Riteway Wholesale Outlet is the LSL Bakery & Restaurant.

Nearby the Island Pot has good inexpensive local food, including bbq ribs and chicken, rice and peas, and johnny cakes.

The Rock Cafe

Open for dinner only on a beautiful deck nestled among the boulders in back, The Rock Cafe (495-5482) has great, affordable Italian/Caribbean cooking with fresh grilled fish, a variety of real Italian pastas, such as Penne Caprese and Conchiglie Al Fungi, and lobster boiled, then baked in creamy basil sauce (photo: Virtual Tourist). Sam's Piano Bar, at its indoor dining area, has great entertainers nightly. Large flatscreen broadcast sporting events, showing its origins as a sports bar.

Giorgio's Wine Restaurant (formerly Giorgio's Table at Savannah Bay, has re-opened above The Rock Cafe (near the 'T' in The Valley road). Still emphasizing fresh local seafood, homemade pasta and fresh ingredients in traditional and innovative recipes, the new Giorgio's interior is designed to reproduce a real Tuscan restaurant with imported brick and marble. And excellent wine by-the-glass and bottle from 250 handpicked Italian wines in its wine cellar.

LSL Bakery & Restaurant

On the way to The Baths, the LSL restaurant has good local food, including great conch fritters and BBQ ribs, jerk chicken and Mahi Mahi, with sides like vegetables and rice pilaf (photos: Trip Advisor).  

 

The LSL Bakery (495-5151), run by Ms. Beverly, has freshly baked bread,  puff pastries, banana bread or muffins, cinnamon rolls and coconut tarts. Try the guava turnovers! Wedding cakes are a specialty.

Pineapple Puff Pastry

 

Lodging.
See Lodging in The Valley of Virgin Gorda for information on accommodations in "The Valley."

Virgin Gorda Airport and Coppermine Point

Lovers' Lane
Where the paved road ends toward Coppermine Point, on this wild coast of entrancing beauty, of moonlit cliffs overhanging the pounding surf glowing white far below,  is Virgin Gorda's Lovers' Lane.

CoppermineRuinsIcon.jpg (6395 bytes)Toward the opposite shore is the Virgin Gorda airport for smaller planes. Further still is Coppermine Point on the tip of Virgin Gorda, the site of an 400 year old copper mine. This picture comes from the Lighthouse Villas' Nature's Secret, the BVI.

Bartender 'All Out'

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Bringing down the secret ingredients to make a "Cave In," the house drink, bartender 'All Out,' actually Elton Sprauve, one of the owners, used to sit on a big rock here while tending the family cattle as a child and watch the sun go down in its spectacular fashion, now has realized his lifetime dream.

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Valley Square Tour

Take a little excursion around a place with a sunny disposition--the  "Valley Square" part of the Virgin Gorda Tour. Here are detailed driving instructions for getting to The Coppermine and the Virgin Gorda Airport.

Dining.
MineShaftCafeIcon.jpg (5661 bytes)At the Mine Shaft Cafe in the Coppermine area, sunset drinks and old time tunes during happy hour (4-6 pm) on the deck with its spectacular panoramic views is the "thang" here. Grilled tuna steak and chicken breast sandwiches, honey/beer batter chicken and baby back ribs are all excellent.

Mineshaft Hurricane Party. Elton and friends were drinking in the bar pit during Hurricane Lenny. The bar structure is open air with a large roof. Elton reports they had never been so scared in their lives, with fierce winds, constant roaring and ominous clouds, some seen offshore reaching down to the sea to form waterspouts. Needless to say, the second half of the storm was spent in a different location.

Airport at Virgin Gorda.

An airport (VIJ) built by Little Dix Bay, but recently acquired by the BVI government, is right along Virgin Gorda's far coast, right on a spectacular reef with views to a succession of rocky ridges down the coast.

One of the world's most beautiful small airports, the landing strip is granite sand with paved round abouts on each end, serving smaller planes.

See Local Airlines and Charters for regular flights, charters and shared charters to Virgin Gorda Airport.

See CarRentals.com for rental cars.

The Flying Iguana (5-5277), open for lunch and dinner with open air dining overlooking the airport and coast, serves good sandwiches, juicy hamburgers and steaks and pasta specials.

 

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