Welcome to St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands! Once the home of notorious pirates like Captain Kidd and Blackbeard, St. Thomas is a hot destination known for its beautiful beaches and snorkeling spots. I’ve seen so many pictures of St. Thomas in magazines and online but never imagined I’d be able to visit one day!
St. Thomas was our second destination on the 7 Day Eastern Caribbean Cruise on the Carnival Glory. We docked at the island’s capital harbor, Charlotte Amalie, which is just a couple of miles from historic downtown Charlotte Amalie. Top shore excursions include Turtle Cove Sail & Snorkel, St. John Trunk Bay Beach & Snorkel Trails, St. John Champagne Catamaran Sailaway, Top 10 Best of St. Thomas & Rum Tasting, and St. Thomas Parasail Adventure.
SEE ALSO: Private Island For The Day At Half Moon Cay, Bahamas
It was a windy and rainy day in St. Thomas so all snorkeling and sailing activities were canceled. We opted for the Magen’s Bay Beach and Skyride To Paradise Point. If you’re not interested in excursions, take a local taxi to downtown Charlotte Amalie and explore by foot. No other city in the Caribbean is as well-known as Charlotte Amalie for its shopping scene.
Started the day with an early breakfast in the dining room with steak & eggs, funniest French toast, blueberry pancakes, smoked salmon, and plenty of coffee. You can eat as much as you want and anything you want!
For the Magen’s Bay Beach and Skyride To Paradise Point excursion, they pick you up from the dock. The open-air safari bus starts with the scenic drive up to Drake’s Seat, a breathtaking vantage point view of Magen’s Bay. We could even see all of the surrounding islands from this view!
Fun fact: Sir Francis Drake used Drake’s Seat in the 1500’s to spy on unsuspecting ships coming toward St. Thomas to pillage for the Queen of England.
Magen’s Bay is known as one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. This one-mile stretch public park was donated to the Virgin Islands in 1946. The entry fee is $5 for non-residents and free for children under 12 years. If you purchased the Magen’s Bay Beach Getaway through Carnival Cruise Lines, the entry fee is covered. From Drake’s Seat, they drove us to Magen’s Bay and dropped us off for two hours.
The waters of Magen’s Bay were very calm so it was relaxing to swim and walk around the beach. Paddleboards, kayaks, beach chairs, floats, masks, and snorkels (there’s a lot of sand at Magen’s Bay so it’s not the best for snorkeling) can be rented on the beach. There was plenty of shade under the coconut grove, arboretum, and mangrove to take a nap.
Stop and get a fresh coconut from the coconut man outside the entrance before you head to Magen’s Bay. It was hard not to fall in love with this beautiful heart-shaped beach!
ST. THOMAS SKYRIDE
For the best view of the island, ride the St. Thomas Skyride. The Skyride takes you 700 feet above the town of Charlotte Amalie to Paradise Point, the most spectacular lookout point on the island. The tramway ride is 7 minutes each way and you can spend as much time you want on the observation deck. There is a restaurant on the deck if you get hungry. Order a couple of Bushwackers (an island favorite), sit back, and enjoy the view.
The St. Thomas Skyride to Paradise Point excursion is $19.99, and free for children 5 and under. It’s about a 10 – 15-minute walk from the dock. The Skyride is included in the Magen’s Bay Beach and Skyride To Paradise Point and they pick you up from Magen’s Bay Beach and dropped us off at the Skyride. I highly recommend everyone to add the St. Thomas Skyride to Paradise Point excursion to your itinerary!
Beautiful view of St. Thomas at night as we sailed away to Puerto Rico!
This post was created for Away We Go with Carnival, the destination for getting in the getaway state of mind.