There are so many reasons to love Saint Croix. The locals are passionately in love with the island and it’s easy to see why people visit and never want to leave. Saint Croix is one of the three United States Virgin Islands, making it an easy travel destination for those of us who live in the States. There’s incredible food on the island (the rum cake at 40 Strand Eatery is reason enough to book a flight) and plenty of adventures to be had! My friend Sarah and I spent six glorious days on Saint Croix in August scoping out the island for you. Here’s my Saint Croix travel guide!
A Few Reasons to Visit Saint Croix:
- It’s an American territory so you don’t need a passport to visit
- Nearby Buck Island has the only underwater national monument in America
- The locals speak English
- The currency is the US dollar
- It’s quite easy to get around the island
- Saint Croix boasts gorgeous flora and fauna and its hilly topography may remind you of Hawaii
- The food scene is not a joke.
Please note: This trip took place before the devastating hurricanes hit the Caribbean. Saint Croix sustained minimal damage and has been acting as a relief hub for the other Virgin Islands. The Buccaneer will resume regular bookings in November. The Caribbean needs us to visit more than ever, as tourism is a major part of the economy.
Where to Stay
I stayed at The Buccaneer Hotel, the oldest running resort in the Caribbean. The Buccaneer boasts three beaches, an eighteen-hole golf course with sweeping views of the Caribbean Sea, eight tennis courts, two pools, a 24-hour gym, a spa, three restaurants, twice daily maid service, complimentary breakfast, and a plethora of daily activities to keep you entertained. We spent six days at The Buccaneer and still didn’t come close to doing everything! The resort is on 340 acres and is just five minutes from downtown Christiansted. There are several different room options; we stayed in a gorgeous luxury dabloon with an epic view of the ocean.
Tour The Buccaneer Hotel:
Watch my room tour:
Read my review of The Buccaneer Hotel here.
We had some epic meals on Saint Croix. The Buccaneer has several great dining options including their beachside restaurant The Mermaid, fine dining restaurant The Terrace, and the more casual Lounge, which hosts live music many nights of the week. Brew STX is great for bar bites on the water, Cafe Christine is a delightful lunch spot (save room for dessert!), and 40 Strand Eatery is utterly fantastic.
There’s so much to do on Saint Croix! Of course there’s a plethora of water sports such as paddle boarding, snorkeling, swimming, boating, and other island activities. There’s a ton of live music; I’m told Frederiksted has a particularly great jazz scene on the weekends. You can drive out to Point Udall, the eastern most point in the United States, and be the first people in the country to watch the sunrise. You can visit nearby Buck Island and snorkel the only underwater monument in the United States. You can visit both rum distilleries and sample the product.
Christiansted also has fantastic shopping. Gecko has adorable women’s fashion, ib designs makes killer jewelry (they make the famous J hook bracelet famous on Saint John), and Adorn has fantastic treasures for the kitchen and home, including cutting boards made by a local artist from local rainforest trees.
Buck Island is a small, uninhabited island just minutes from Saint Croix. Its reef is the only underwater national monument in the United States and if you love snorkeling, it’s a must do activity while vacationing on Saint Croix. Caribbean Sea Adventures offers a plethora of options, including private charters to snorkel in style! Read more about my day with Caribbean Sea Adventures here.
Cruzan Rum Distillery
We only ventured to Frederiksted to visit the Cruzan Rum Distillery. The locals are very loyal to Cruzan and we found out why: Cruzan has been distilling on Saint Croix since the early 1800s! The tour costs $10 and includes two rum cocktails. You’ll see the barrel room and the giant vats where the rum is fermenting, which completely smells like gingerbread. The tour itself only lasted about fifteen minutes so even with enjoying a couple of cocktails, you can easily see the distillery in an hour. Click here for more information.
Captain Morgan Distillery
Captain Morgan recently moved its distillery to Saint Croix. Sadly we did not get to take the tour (long story) but Captain Morgan is my favorite rum and I basically refused to leave the island until we stopped by and I’m so glad that we did! It’s on the way to the airport from The Buccaneer Hotel and the lobby actually has a really thorough display of the history of rum on Saint Croix. The gift shop is amazing if you’re a Captain Morgan fan. I’ve never seen private stock (my favorite!) for a better price. And yes, I did unpack my suitcase to make room! Click here for more information.
One huge bonus of Saint Croix is that it’s quite easy to get around! Cab fares aren’t as expensive as other islands but because the roads are paved and clearly marked and adventure is to be had all over the island, I highly recommend renting a car. We drove the most adorable mint green Ford Fiesta that Hertz St. Croix dropped off at The Buccaneer for us for a day and kept saying that we wished we’d had it the whole trip! Having your own car is by far the best option if you want to drive out to the rum distilleries, which are quite far from either town, or out to Udall Point, the eastern most point in the United States. Downtown Christiansted also has a free parking lot and plenty of street parking. Book your car here.
Saint Croix reminded me a lot of Maui: it’s hilly and lush with lots of colorful flora and fauna. I cannot say enough good things about the town of Christiansted. It reminded me so much of New Orleans of the Caribbean and my regular readers know how much I adore New Orleans! With live music filling the narrow, historic streets and the water crashing near by, you’ll wonder how you were transported to the Big Easy! Many of the buildings are from the 1700 and 1800s and Christiansted has done a marvelous job at retaining that old world Caribbean vibe.
Book This Trip
- Book a room at The Buccaneer Hotel
- Dine at The Mermaid, The Terrace and/or The Lounge, 40 Strand Eatery, Cafe Christine, and Brew STX
- Spend the day enjoying The Buccaneer’s luxury cabana on Mermaid Beach
- Learn how to paddle board, snorkel, dive, and more at The Buccaneer
- Snorkel Buck Island with Caribbean Sea Adventures
- Enjoy a pyro show on the beach by CoralFire
- Rent a car from Hertz St. Croix
- Go shopping in Christiansted
- Walk the Christiansted boardwalk
- Enjoy a rum tasting at Cruzan Rum and Captain Morgan Distillery
Watch the season two premiere of The Rose Table featuring Saint Croix:
Disclaimer: This article is intended to be a general resource. Any recommendations are based on personal opinion. A portion of this trip may have been compensated but opinions are my own, always. I’m not a fan of negativity so if I don’t like something, I don’t write about it.