Are you struggling to decide where to stay in St. Thomas? Dive into our handpicked guide to discover St. Thomas’ coolest areas.
The allure of the Caribbean has always been undeniable, and at the heart of this tropical charm lies St. Thomas. As part of the US Virgin Islands, St. Thomas is a beautiful blend of azure waters, golden sands, and vibrant local culture. Every year, countless travelers are drawn to its shores, seeking both adventure and relaxation.
Downtown Charlotte Amalie buzzes with activity, offering a delightful mix of historical landmarks, bustling markets, and local eateries. On the other hand, the serene beaches, like those at Magens Bay, provide a tranquil escape from the world, where the rhythmic sound of waves and the gentle rustle of palm trees become a soothing lullaby.
Despite popular opinion, St. Thomas is not just about the tourist spots. Dive a little deeper, and you’ll uncover hidden gems that offer a unique glimpse into the island’s soul. From secluded beach coves to charming local cafes, there’s always something new to discover.
If you’re planning a trip and wondering where to stay in St. Thomas, you’re in for a treat. This guide will take you through the best areas, catering to different travel styles and preferences. Whether you’re a solo backpacker, a couple on a romantic getaway, or a family on Caribbean vacation, St. Thomas has the perfect spot. Here are 12 of the best areas to stay in St. Thomas that you should know about.
Are you eager to discover where to stay in St. Thomas? As highlighted earlier, there’s no shortage of beautiful areas in St. Thomas to stay. From Nazareth’s upscale resorts to Downtown Charlotte Amalie’s historic charm, you’re spoilt for choice when it comes to deciding where to stay in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands.
Are you looking for the rugged beauty of Compass Point? Or would you prefer the serene beaches of Smith Bay? Whatever you’re planning, our guide is here to spotlight St. Thomas’ top neighborhoods and areas to stay. Get ready to explore the coolest places in St. Thomas for a trip you’ll remember for life. Here are 12 of the best places to stay in St. Thomas.
Downtown Charlotte Amalie is the lively core of St. Thomas. Every step in this area is a step into history, with landmarks such as Fort Christian offering glimpses into the island’s colonial past. The streets are lined with a mix of upscale boutiques and artisan stalls. As such, it’s a paradise for those keen on picking up unique souvenirs.
Aside from the shopping, the Skyride to Paradise Point is a short distance away, offering breathtaking panoramic views of the island. Hidden gems like the St. Thomas Synagogue, one of the oldest in the Western Hemisphere, add depth to the area’s heritage.
While the main streets are always lively, venturing into the smaller alleys can lead to quaint cafes and lesser-known shops. Early mornings are the best time to explore, as the streets are less crowded and the Caribbean sun is gentler.
Being the main hub, it’s well-connected to other parts of the island, and there’s never a shortage of activities or eateries. However, it can get crowded, especially during peak tourist season or when cruise ships dock.
If you’re all about that perfect blend of history, shopping, and a dash of island hustle, Downtown Charlotte Amalie is the best place to stay in St. Thomas, USVI. Just remember to pack those comfy shoes for all the exploring!
Ah, the East End & Red Hook! This area is a dream for beach enthusiasts and those looking to for the best water sports in St. Thomas. With its pristine beaches like Coki Beach, you’re never too far from a refreshing dip in the Caribbean Sea. And if you’re keen on exploring the underwater world, Coral World Ocean Park is a must-visit, offering a unique peek into marine life.
The lively village vibe of Red Hook is a treat, complete with cafes, bars, and a gateway to the neighboring island of St. John. And when the sun sets, the nightlife here doesn’t disappoint. But here’s a little tip: amidst all the beach fun, make a pit stop at a local eatery. The fresh seafood is to die for.
In East End & Red Hook, you’re close to some of the island’s best beaches and there’s never a dull moment at night. On the flip side, it can get a bit crowded, especially on weekends. And, oh, keep an eye on those accommodation prices; popularity comes with its price tag.
Feeling the beach vibes yet? East End & Red Hook might just be one of the most beautiful areas in St. Thomas to stay.
The Southside of St. Thomas is where relaxation takes center stage. Away from the bustling hubs, this area offers a tranquil retreat with its serene beaches and laid-back ambiance. Resorts like Limetree Beach Resort and Bolongo Bay Beach Resort dot the coastline, providing idyllic settings for those sun-soaked afternoons. Boasting so much quiet and relaxation, it’s one of the best places to stay in St. Thomas for families.
Dive into the crystal-clear waters, or simply lounge with a book in hand, the Southside is all about rejuvenating your senses. And when the evening rolls in, the soft glow of beachside cafes creates a magical atmosphere, perfect for a romantic dinner or a quiet evening with loved ones.
Moreover, the Southside is also home to hidden trails that lead to panoramic viewpoints, offering a different perspective of St. Thomas. So, if you’re someone who loves a mix of beach relaxation and a bit of exploration, this might just be your spot.
In a nutshell, if you’re after the most relaxing places to stay in St. Thomas with a sprinkle of adventure, the Southside awaits with open arms.
Just a stone’s throw from the airport, Charlotte Amalie West is a convenient and vibrant spot to kickstart your St. Thomas vacation. While it’s close to the hustle and bustle of the main city, this area offers a slightly quieter ambiance. It’s a great choice for those searching for unique places to stay in St. Thomas.
Stroll along the harbor, watch the boats come and go, and soak in the picturesque views. The area is dotted with affordable accommodations, making it a favorite among budget travelers. And if you’re keen on exploring, the historic sites of Downtown Charlotte Amalie are just a short drive away.
Foodies, take note! Charlotte Amalie West boasts some delightful local eateries where you can savor authentic Caribbean dishes. And for those moments when you just want to relax, the beaches here are less crowded, offering a peaceful retreat.
Wrapping it up, Charlotte Amalie West is all about convenience, affordability, and a touch of local charm. A spot where you can enjoy the city’s vibe without being right in the middle of the frenzy.
Looking for places to stay in St. Thomas off the beaten path? The Northside is a realm of natural beauty and tranquility. Here, the island’s lush greenery meets the azure sea, creating landscapes that are nothing short of breathtaking. It’s a world away from the touristy spots. As such, it’s an ideal choice for travelers seeking solitude and a deeper connection with nature.
Magens Bay, one of the best beaches in St. Thomas, is a highlight of the Northside. Its calm waters and powdery sands are perfect for a day of relaxation. But beyond the beach, the area is dotted with hidden coves and trails, beckoning the more adventurous souls to explore.
Accommodations here lean towards private villas and boutique resorts, offering a more intimate and personalized experience. And while the Northside feels secluded, it’s never too far from the amenities and attractions of the main town.
To sum it up, the Northside is where St. Thomas showcases its raw, unspoiled beauty. It’s a haven for those looking to escape the crowds and immerse themselves in the island’s natural wonders.
Water Island might just be one of the best places to stay in St. Thomas for couples. This tranquil gem, a short ferry ride from the main island, offers an intimate setting that’s perfect for those romantic getaways. As the smallest of the US Virgin Islands, it provides a unique charm that’s hard to find elsewhere.
Honeymoon Beach, with its soft sands and clear waters, is aptly named and is every bit the romantic spot you’d imagine. For those looking to add a touch of adventure, Fort Segarra, an underground fort, beckons with tales of the past.
While the accommodations on Water Island are limited, they offer a unique experience. Think cozy beachfront cottages or hilltop villas with views that stretch for miles. And if you’re someone who loves to explore where to stay in St. Thomas off the beaten path, this island is a treasure waiting to be discovered.
Water Island is where romance meets adventure. Truly, it’s a must-visit spot in St. Thomas for couples and explorers alike.
Nazareth is where the magic of St. Thomas truly shines. This eastern enclave, known for its pristine beaches and luxurious resorts, offers travelers a blend of relaxation and elegance. Secret Harbour, with its golden sands and azure waters, is a favorite spot for both sunbathers and snorkelers.
Dive beneath the waves, and you’ll discover a vibrant marine world. This is what makes Nazareth one of the coolest St. Thomas neighborhoods for underwater enthusiasts. In the evenings, the area transforms into a tranquil haven, with the gentle sounds of the sea providing the perfect backdrop.
For families pondering where to stay in St. Thomas, NC, Nazareth offers a mix of family-friendly activities and upscale amenities. Its strategic location near Red Hook also means that lively eateries, bars, and even the ferry to St. John are just a short drive away.
In a nutshell, if you’re seeking a blend of luxury, nature, and convenience, Nazareth is your go-to place to stay in St. Thomas, USVI.
Ever wondered where the locals love to hang out in St. Thomas? Welcome to Frenchtown, a charming enclave with a rich history and a vibrant local scene. Nestled on the outskirts of Charlotte Amalie, this area is a delightful blend of old-world charm and modern amenities.
With its pastel-colored buildings and narrow streets, Frenchtown feels like a step back in time. Yet, it’s home to some of St. Thomas’s best cafes and restaurants. Seafood lovers are in for a treat, with eateries serving up the freshest catches of the day.
If you’re seeking unique areas to stay in St. Thomas, Frenchtown stands out with its distinct culture and heritage. The annual Bastille Day celebrations are a testament to the area’s French roots and are a must-experience for any visitor.
To sum it up, Frenchtown is where history meets hip. It’s a pocket of St. Thomas that offers both cultural depth and contemporary vibes. Hands down, it’s one of the coolest areas places in St. Thomas.
Looking for a spot in St. Thomas that’s a bit off the beaten track? Say hello to the West End. This region, with its rugged coastline and untouched beauty, offers a more secluded experience for those wanting to escape the usual tourist spots.
The beaches here, like Botany Bay, are less frequented, giving visitors a sense of having their private slice of paradise. The waters are pristine, which makes them ideal for activities like kayaking, paddleboarding, and even a bit of snorkeling.
For travelers curious about where to stay in St. Thomas for an authentic experience, the West End provides a glimpse into the island’s unspoiled side. Accommodations range from quaint guesthouses to eco-resorts, ensuring a stay that’s in harmony with nature.
Wrapping it up, the West End is St. Thomas’s hidden gem. It’s a place where nature reigns supreme, and the hustle and bustle feel worlds away. If tranquility and natural beauty are high on your list, this is the spot for you.
The Peterborg Peninsula is a stretch of land that boasts some of the most breathtaking views in St. Thomas. Jutting out into the Atlantic, this area is surrounded by turquoise waters on three sides, offering vistas that are nothing short of spectacular.
Magens Bay, often hailed as one of the world’s most beautiful beaches, is a stone’s throw away. Its calm waters and crescent-shaped shoreline make it a favorite for both locals and tourists. Aside from the popular spots, Peterborg is dotted with secluded coves and hidden beaches, waiting to be discovered.
For those considering the best hotels in St. Thomas, the peninsula offers a mix of luxury villas and private homes. Many of these accommodations come with private beach access, ensuring an exclusive and serene experience.
Peterborg Peninsula is where the Caribbean’s natural beauty shines in all its glory. It’s a haven for beach lovers, view seekers, and anyone looking to experience St. Thomas in its most pristine form.
Smith Bay, located on the northeastern coast of St. Thomas, is a gem waiting to be discovered. Its coastline boasts beaches like Lindquist Beach, a paradise for those who love the sun, sand, and sea. The powdery white sands and azure waters make it one of the coolest St. Thomas neighborhoods for beach enthusiasts.
Smith Bay is always a hub of local activity. The vibrant community often hosts events and festivals, offering visitors a taste of authentic island life. And for the adrenaline junkies, the bay’s waters are perfect for windsurfing, jet-skiing, and other water sports.
In terms of places to stay, Smith Bay doesn’t disappoint. From luxury resorts to quaint guesthouses, there’s something for every traveler. Plus, its close proximity to Red Hook means dining and entertainment options are just a short drive away. This makes it the best neighborhood to stay in St. Thomas for those who want a mix of relaxation and recreation.
Overall, Smith Bay is where the Caribbean’s vibrant culture meets its stunning natural beauty, ensuring an unforgettable experience for all who visit.
Compass Point is where the wild beauty of St. Thomas truly comes alive. Perched on the island’s western coast, it’s a realm of dramatic cliffs, serene coves, and breathtaking views of the Caribbean Sea. Imagine capturing the perfect sunset shot here or simply soaking in the vistas with the gentle hum of the waves in the background.
Adventure calls in Compass Point. Hiking trails weave through the area, leading to hidden waterfalls and panoramic overlooks. And if the sea beckons, nearby bays are perfect playgrounds for kayaking, paddleboarding, and deep-sea fishing.
Hungry after a day of exploration? Local eateries here are a delight, especially if you’re in the mood for some fresh seafood. It’s the kind of place where every meal feels like a celebration of the island’s bounty.
All in all, Compass Point isn’t just a place on the map – it’s an experience. A blend of adventure, relaxation, and culinary delights that makes it one of the best areas in St. Thomas, USVI.
Are you looking for more content to help you decide where to stay in St. Thomas? Here are some common questions (and answers) I get asked a lot about St. Thomas’s coolest neighborhoods.
Choosing the best area to stay in St. Thomas can be a delightful dilemma, given the island’s diverse offerings. Each area has its unique charm, attractions, and vibe. Here’s a quick rundown of some of the top areas to consider:
1. East End & Red Hook: Perfect for those seeking luxury and proximity to pristine beaches. This area is also a hub for water activities and offers easy ferry access to nearby islands.
2. Downtown Charlotte Amalie: Dive into the island’s history, indulge in shopping sprees, and experience a vibrant nightlife. It’s the heart of St. Thomas and pulsates with energy.
3. Nazareth: Known for its upscale resorts, Nazareth is the go-to for travelers seeking a touch of opulence. The beaches here, like Secret Harbour, are less crowded, offering a more exclusive experience.
4. Northside: If breathtaking natural beauty is what you’re after, Northside won’t disappoint. With spots like Magens Bay and a more laid-back vibe, it’s a nature lover’s paradise.
5. Smith Bay: A blend of scenic beauty and local charm. The bay’s coastline boasts beaches like Lindquist Beach, making it a favorite for sun and sea enthusiasts.
Ultimately, the best areas to stay in St. Thomas depend on what you’re looking for in your Caribbean getaway.
St. Thomas is blessed with numerous beautiful beaches. The Northside boasts Magens Bay, often hailed as one of the world’s most beautiful beaches. Meanwhile, the East End & Red Hook area offers beaches like Coki Beach and Sapphire Beach, known for their clear waters and snorkeling opportunities. Nazareth and Smith Bay also have their share of stunning beaches. Every side of the island offers a beach experience to remember!
A typical recommendation is 4-5 days. This gives you ample time to explore the island’s beaches, indulge in water activities, visit historical sites, and even take a ferry to nearby islands like St. John. However, if you’re looking for a more relaxed vacation, you might consider a longer stay to truly soak in the island’s beauty and culture.
Here’s a suggested itinerary for a stay in St. Thomas:
Day 1: Explore Charlotte Amalie
- Morning: Wander around the historic downtown area, visit Fort Christian, and shop for duty-free goods.
- Afternoon: Take the Skyride to Paradise Point for panoramic views of the harbor.
- Evening: Dine at a waterfront restaurant.
Day 2: Beach Day
- Morning and Afternoon: Spend the day at Magen’s Bay, one of the world’s most beautiful beaches. Swim, sunbathe, and partake in water sports.
- Evening: Enjoy a beachside dinner or explore the Red Hook area for dining and nightlife.
Island Tour and Snorkeling (Day 3)
- Morning: Take a guided island tour to see highlights like Drake’s Seat, Mountain Top, and various lookout points.
- Afternoon: Visit Coki Beach or Sapphire Beach for snorkeling and relaxation.
- Evening: Opt for a sunset cruise or dine at a local restaurant.
Day 4: Day Trip to St. John or the British Virgin Islands
- Spend the day exploring the nearby island of St. John, with its pristine beaches and national park, or take a ferry to the British Virgin Islands for a change of scenery.
Day 5: Leisure and Departure
- Morning: Do some last-minute shopping or relax at a local café.
- Afternoon: Depart or explore any attractions you might have missed.
The best time to visit St. Thomas is between April and June. This period is right after the busy winter season, ensuring fewer crowds, and before the peak of the hurricane season. The weather is pleasant, and you can often find good deals on accommodations and activities.
Both islands offer unique experiences. St. Thomas is larger and more commercialized, with a mix of beaches, shopping, and nightlife. It’s ideal for those looking for a variety of activities and experiences. On the other hand, St. John is more laid-back and natural, with over half of the island designated as a national park. If you’re seeking tranquility and nature, St. John might be your pick. However, many visitors choose to stay on St. Thomas and take day trips to St. John to get the best of both worlds.
Which beaches are better St. Thomas or St John?
Both St. Thomas and St. John, located in the U.S. Virgin Islands, offer stunning beaches, but they cater to different types of travelers and experiences. Here’s a comparison to help you decide:
St. Thomas Beaches:
- Busier and More Developed: St. Thomas is the more commercialized of the two islands, so its beaches tend to be busier, especially when cruise ships are in port.
- Amenities: Many beaches in St. Thomas have a range of amenities, including beach chairs, umbrellas, water sports rentals, and beachside bars and restaurants.
- Popular Beaches:
- Magen’s Bay: Often listed among the world’s most beautiful beaches, it’s perfect for families because of its calm waters.
- Coki Beach: Known for its excellent snorkeling opportunities.
- Sapphire Beach: Offers stunning views and a variety of water sports.
St. John Beaches:
- More Secluded: About 60% of St. John is a national park (Virgin Islands National Park), so its beaches are more pristine and less developed than those in St. Thomas.
- Natural Beauty: St. John’s beaches are known for their crystal-clear waters, powdery white sand, and vibrant coral reefs. They offer a more tranquil and natural experience.
- Popular Beaches:
- Trunk Bay: Famous for its underwater snorkeling trail and often considered one of the most beautiful beaches in the Caribbean.
- Cinnamon Bay: Offers camping facilities and is great for water sports.
- Honeymoon Beach: A quieter beach that’s perfect for relaxation.
- If you’re looking for a more commercialized beach experience with lots of amenities and activities, St. Thomas might be the better choice.
- If you prefer more secluded, natural beaches and prioritize snorkeling and natural beauty, St. John is hard to beat.
Before heading to St. Thomas, it’s essential to know that the US dollar is the official currency, and English is the primary language. While it’s a US territory, and US citizens don’t need a passport for entry, it’s always a good idea to carry one, especially if you plan to visit the British Virgin Islands. Driving is on the left side of the road, so be cautious if you rent a vehicle. Lastly, always remember to respect local customs and traditions, ensuring a pleasant and enriching experience.
The best part? St. Thomas remains one of the cheapest Caribbean islands to fly to. There is one airport on the island, Cyril E. King Airport (STT), and the most popular resorts and destinations can be reached easily by taxi or inter-island ferry.
Ahh, St. Thomas! A Caribbean jewel that truly offers something for everyone. From the upscale vibes of Nazareth to the historic charm of Downtown Charlotte Amalie, there’s a corner of this island that’s sure to resonate with every traveler. And let’s not forget the rugged beauty of Compass Point or the serene beaches of Smith Bay. Each area we’ve explored has its unique allure, painting a vibrant tapestry of experiences waiting to be had.
If you’re wondering where to stay in St. Thomas, rest assured that whether you’re on a shoestring budget or looking to splurge on a luxurious retreat, the island has got you covered. With a range of accommodations, activities, and atmospheres, there’s no shortage of incredible places in St. Thomas to stay.
As you plan your St. Thomas adventure, remember that the island is a mosaic of experiences. Dive in, explore, and let St. Thomas work its magic on you. Here’s to unforgettable activities in Caribbean paradise!