Info and tips for St. Thomas

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Jersey

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Business will take me to St. Thomas for couple weeks, leaving next Sunday, last minute thing. Appreciate any info! Looking for dive info for weekends, will be working long hours during the week, but HOPING to get to a beach to swim or snorkel after work, I'm going to need to decompress. Input to decent swim/snorkel areas appreciated. Also any beaches/areas to avoid as a woman traveling alone.

What are must dives and don't dives? I'm AOW + EAN, few hundred dives, mostly warm (St. Marteen, Saba, Grand Cayman, Bonaire), some cold NE, boat and shore.

Haven't even booked air or lodging, first thought was where to dive/snorkel. Will probably rent car. My staff stays at the Emerald Beach Best Western anyone stayed there? Thanks for any all info!
 

diversteve

always tired
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I'm a Fish!
There's a beach at the Best Western...

200374_P.jpg

For diving from town (Charlotte Amalie) there's Admiralty Dive Center or Blue Island Divers. Both get good reviews here. If you want to drive out to the East End on the weekends there's Red Hook Dive Center in Red Hook or St. Thomas Diving Club at Bolongo Bay resort. They're going to tend to dive the east Cays, near St. John etc. Carval Rock is out there, one of the best dives. Congo Cay is another good site. IDK the south of town dives as we stayed/dove in the East End.

If you wanted to shore dive in that area there's Coki Beach - pretty shallow average dive - not a lot to see and we didn't get much past 40'. Tanks available at Coki Dive. The cruise lines take divers/snorkelers there. Some ganja use by the locals there also but I felt completely safe. I think it and Hull Bay on the north shore are about the only shore dives on St. Thomas. Hull Bay is a little remote also.

In downtown Charlotte Amalie and at most resorts you're going to see gated security and fencing so pay some attention if you're driving around at night. I personally felt downtown was less safe than the East End.

Red Hook is pleasant, there's several decent restaurants and harbor views. About 1/2 hr. drive from town or maybe a little longer. The over the center of the island road should really only be done during daylight hours but it's faster.

One other thing you can do is drive (ferry) over to St. John on the weekend. There's car ferries from Red Hook and they run early morning till past dark. There's snorkel trails there - Trunk Bay is a known option.

Watch out for black/white striped Mosquitoes. Cases of Chikungunya Fever have been reported in the USVI's
http://www.nps.gov/viis/loader.cfm?csModule=security/getfile&pageid=592864

Links to everything I mentioned:

St. Thomas Scuba Diving - USVI Dive Center | Admiralty Dive Center
St. Thomas scuba diving - Blue Island Divers
Red Hook Dive Center | Scuba Diving in St. Thomas US Virgin Islands
St. Thomas Diving Club, Scuba Diving and Snorkeling in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands, a PADI 5 Star IDC
Coki Dive Center | St Thomas U.S. Virgin Islands | Scuba and Snorkel

Virgin Islands Ferry Schedule
St. John Activities: Snorkeling & Snuba
http://www.nps.gov/viis/planyourvisit/placestogo.htm
 
OP
Jersey

Jersey

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Location
SE PA/ Southern NJ
# of dives
200 - 499
Thanks Steve! I saw the best western was on the beach, may just stay there. I had no clue how long the drive across island was so I appreciate the info. I did read about Chikungunya, it would be bad to work FOR the hospital and end up IN the hospital.
 

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