GETTING TO THE BITTER END
[the opening North Sound panorama of the Bitter End Resort is by Lynn McKamey, the incomparable ScubaMom]

The Bitter End is well named–the trip there is to a place that can only be reached by water

First, take a jet to San Juan, then a smaller turboprop to Tortola in the British Virgin Islands. Then, set sail in your charter boat or hop the ferry (see In Island Transportation) to the North Sound of Virgin Gorda. There you will find one of the most intriguing places on earth if you love the water–the Bitter End Yacht Club.

The term "bitter end" has a number of meanings but for the sailor, it means the last or free end of a line, as opposed to the standing part, a term from the past when "bitts" were used to tie up boats.

It is said that the "bitter end," when applied to the North Sound, meant the last place in the Caribbean before facing a long and hazardous journey across the ocean. More protected than even the relatively benign Sir Francis Drake Channel, the inland sea that laps the shores of most of these islands, the North Sound is famous in history as the gathering place of pirates and privateers.

The Bitter End Yacht Club, on the opposite shore than Virgin Gorda (so christened the "Fat Virgin" for its shape from the ocean horizon), can be reached only by water. There are marina slips, moorings, and plenty of room for anchoring (toward Saba Rock).

But once here, the water becomes the means for an astonishing number of water-related activities and the ambiance of this quite unique and remarkable place is a boater’s dreamworld.

To Boater’s Dreamworld