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Address: Waterfront Dr., Road Town
Phone Number: 284 494 3701
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9:00 am - 3:00 pm
Closed now
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Mon - Fri 9:00 am - 3:00 pm

Old Government House has an important place in the history and culture of...

Old Government House has an important place in the history and culture of the people of the British Virgin Islands. It has always been a place of purposeful activity, hosting official functions, social gatherings and Royal visits; all of which engaged local participants.The annual garden party to celebrate the birthday of the reigning monarch entertained hundreds of citizens and residents yearly within the house and grounds and the event itself has become an institution on the calendar of social events in the British Virgin Islands. For some forty years, the party was held on the tennis court, where at other times young and old tennis enthusiasts practiced the art of the game.The house and gardens have also hosted a number of royal visitors including Elizabeth the Queen Mother and Princess Alice in 1964, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II visited on two occasions, once in 1966 and again in 1977, Princess Margaret in 1972, Princess Alexandra in 1988, Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh in 1994, and Prince Andrew in 2000.Unfortunately, the materials employed during the original construction of the building in 1926 accelerated the deterioration endemic to buildings in a sub-tropical climate, hastening the mortality of the site as an official residence. The building fell into disrepair and was closed for renovations in 1996, when the Governor and his wife moved to a temporary residence on the west side of Road Harbor.A period of reflection followed during which time members of the Overseas Estates Department at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in London pondered over the fate of Old Government House. The decision was taken to demolish the building and construct a new residence located on the old site. However, local objections demonstrated the importance of the building within the local cultural psyche and after consultation with Virgin Islanders towards the end of the millennium in late 1999, it was considered appropriate to rehabilitate Old Government House and transform it into a museum. Once significant structural repairs and a complete internal transformation (primarily conducted by volunteers) had taken place, Old Government House Museum was opened to the public late 2002 and today provides a focus of interest for people interested in Virgin Islands history and culture.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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Gracious introduction to Tortola

Although one could tour the Old Government House Museum in under an hour, we spent a relaxing two hours there. Besides touring the furnished rooms, examining paintings on the... read more

5 of 5 starsReviewed 3 weeks ago
Mary Ann P
Waverly, Pennsylvania
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7 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Waverly, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
11 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Although one could tour the Old Government House Museum in under an hour, we spent a relaxing two hours there. Besides touring the furnished rooms, examining paintings on the walls and artifacts from royal visits, and looking through the Stamp Room collection, we read a fascinating first-person account of the 1924 hurricane. We sat for a long time on the... More 

Thank Mary Ann P
Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
49 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 13, 2015

The Old Government House Museum is a very pleasant surprise. Located just a short walk from shore in Road Town, this museum has a stunning collection of British memorabilia all located in the Old Government House. The first floor has many great artifacts and collectibles from British history on the BVI islands. Signatures from many royal visitors are found amongst... More 

Thank Brian D
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
50 reviews
32 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 129 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 31, 2014

The Old Government House is a short walk from the centre of Road Town (set upon a hill overlooking the main harbour). For just $3, we were able to view both floors of the Governor's old residence, which has now been turned into a museum. It's a house steeped in history, with beautiful colonial architecture and a wealth of information... More 

Level Contributor
281 reviews
103 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 161 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 11, 2014

A visit to this museum is well worth the admission charge. Just a short walk along from the Road Town Ferry Terminal. Takes you back into Britain's colonial past. Not only full of interesting literature and artefacts', but you get a great view back across the harbour to the cruise ship(s) - so take your camera. There is a very... More 

Thank RandRI
Greenwich London UK
Level Contributor
30 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 24, 2012

I discovered this little gem when visting from a cruise, there was no mention of it in any of the cruise brochures. It's very east to get to, Just 10 -12 brisk walk for the cruise port, keep to sea to your left all the way, and then just as you pass the local passenger ferry port keep on walking... More 

Thank Pliny
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2012

We arrived into Road Town and had heard that the 5 minute walk to Old Government House was well worth the effort - we weren't disappointed! Stepping inside is like stepping back in history. The 2 floor museum sits on a slight hill overlooking and had wonderful views of the main harbour. There are loads of interesting artefacts and photos... More 

Thank Kate A
Newton, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
68 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 12, 2011

Don't let the $3 admission fee put you off -- it is well worth it, especially if you are a bit of an Anglo Buff. It takes you back to the old colonial days. The view over the harbor is delightful, One can just imagine the old Governor sitting there with the Chief of Police discussing current unrest in outlying... More 

Thank Brewce599

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