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Is it worth the long trip to Virgin Gorda from St John?

Miami, FL
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Is it worth the long trip to Virgin Gorda from St John?

We are going to St John in two weeks and are considering a trip to Virgin Gorda for a day to the baths. I was wondering if someone has been there recently? Is it worth doing the trip being so long to get there? Is the hike to the baths hard to make. I am concerned because I had abdominal surgery (myomectomy)and are not supposed to do anything strenous on this trip. Any info would be great. THanks

Locust, NJ
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1. Re: Is it worth the long trip to Virgin Gorda from St John?

I would definately consider doing the 4 islands in one day trip on the New Horizons II. The boat lets you off right in front of the baths and you swim to shore (not to strenous) The boat trip there is not too long and you just kick back and have some painkillers and take in the sites. The 2nd stop is Marina Cay for lunch. Its a really cool little island consisting of about 8 cottages and a neat restaurant. Then its off to Guana Island for a short snorkling stop. Last stop is Jost Van Dyke to the Soggy Dollar Bar for some more Painkillers and some serious limin on the most beautiful white beach. The baths is really just walking thru the boulder formations no hike involved.We have done many boat trips while in St John and we really enjoyed this one.Now we know our way around so much that we rent our own boat and do it ourselves. We will be there in 2 weeks as well so keep your fingers crossed for good weather.

Parker, Colorado
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for St. John
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2. Re: Is it worth the long trip to Virgin Gorda from St John?

A trip to the baths is absolutely worth it. It may take some time to get up there, but the views and breezes from the boat are great. You'll get to see most of the other BVI's enroute. The 2 beaches at the baths are beautiful as well. Just try NOT to go an a day when there's a cruise ship in Tortola. A big crowd would take away from the charm of the place.

Now, about your surgery...To traverse the baths is not ALL that hard. We've done it many times and have witnessed everything from 3 year olds to 70 year olds doing it. I remember once a very heavy, older lady did it. Don't think she had much fun, but she made it!

In essence, the baths are a series of boulders of varying size, stacked along the beach for maybe 50-100 yards. Most of the walk through is quite easy and on the sand. However, there is one spot that is often wet or damp, usually has sand spriinkled on it from people's feet, and is just steep enough to have a little rope attached to the side so you can hold onto it and steady yourself to avoid slipping. I guess the climb right there is about 30 degrees on a smooth, granite surface and is about 10 feet long. If you slipped there, it COULD tug on your abdominal muscles. This is really the only part that I'd worry about if I were you. I guess you could sit and scoot yourself along if you got concerned when you got there, but I don't know you so....I don't really know what you're up for....

There's one other part that's a bit tricky. You have to climb a ladder that's maybe 8-10 rungs tall. At the top, you walk about 20 feet on a flat surface which has 2 boulders leaning against eachother overhead. So, you have to duck down to get between them....not on all 4's by any means, but you do have to duck a little so you don't scrape your back or head.

Even if you don't take to 10 minute "hike" through the baths, it is so gorgeous, it would be worth the trip anyway IMHO. Plus, there is adequate (not awesome) snorkeling there, and I've read that your doctor has encouraged you to swim ;-)

My favorite part of the baths is the short hike up to a restaurant named "The Top of the Baths". I'd say that walk from the beach takes 8-10 minutes or so. It's not very steep, and is a well cleared path. At the restaurant, they have a wonderful freshwater pool for use by anyone who buys a drink or orders food...........Come to think of it, if you're taking the ferry there, you'll get to Spanishtown first and take a taxi from there to the baths, so you'll autimatically see the restaurant...Anyway, it's a great way to get the salt off before you head back to STJ.

I guess, if I were you, I'd just wait until the end of the trip and see how I was feeling before deciding. The salt water and snorkeling might just be miraculously therapeudic! Another good day trip is to Jost.

I envy your trip. Whatever you do, have fun!

Pittsford, New York
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3. Re: Is it worth the long trip to Virgin Gorda from St John?

What they said. The baths is great, no matter the outfit you go with. No problem getting there - we've done 2 trips, one where they drop you off and you take a bus to the baths, one where you swim in. Once youre there, you dont have to do any more exploring unless you want to. If you do decide not to go though, take a trip to Jost van Dyke. Just a couple of stopd for snorkeling, lunch at Foxys and a quick painkiller at the Soggy Dollar. Cant beat that either

Sharpsburg, Georgia
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4. Re: Is it worth the long trip to Virgin Gorda from St John?

We were married there in May and the scenery is beautiful and the snorkeling is unbelievable! It's definitely worth any time you will spend traveling to Virgin Gorda. I am a little concerned about your surgery though.

Hiking the Baths does involve a fair amount of bending, stooping, and climbing. Anything that requires climbing has stairs and some of those are very steep.

We were pretty exhausted after 4 hrs of snorkeling and hiking compounded by the long walk back (up hill) to the parking lot. If you decide to go I would definitely suggest swimming in to limit the amount of physical exersion involved.

If you decide to go I would limit the items you carry with you on the hike to a camera & and bottle of water (lockers are available to rent). If you're still not sure, check out the photos from our trip.


Miami, FL
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5. Re: Is it worth the long trip to Virgin Gorda from St John?

Thanks for all the great info. We arrive on Saturday, October 15th and leave Sat, Oct 22nd. I am so excited. I have been to St John before a couple of times but only while on cruises. This will be the first time we are staying there. We do plan to do a trip to Jost Van Dyke on Sunday and then on Thursday we are going to Virgin Gorda. We do want to spend our last full day, Friday, in St John. We might also squeeze in a trip to Tortola maybe on Wednesday. We decided we will do the trip to Virgin Gorda. I do want to see the Baths. I think I will be ok. If it gets to be too much than I guess I can turn around. My surgery is healing very well and it will be just over a month by then.

Regardless I know that it will be an awesome trip. Now I just have to pray there are no hurricanes out there that week. Thanks again, your info was great.

6. Re: Is it worth the long trip to Virgin Gorda from St John?

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Hampton Roads, VA
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7. Re: Is it worth the long trip to Virgin Gorda from St John?

I second the suggestion for New Horizons II. It was one of the best days of our 14 day stay there. I enjoyed the variety of the different islands. In the future, we may rent a boat and try it ourselves.

Syosset, New York
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8. Re: Is it worth the long trip to Virgin Gorda from St John?

Definatly go to the baths...the walk is not bad but once you are in the baths you have to climb to get to the lil swimming area that they have on the other side...if you want to make your trip even more exciting, go on the Limnos which stops at the westin in st. johns i believe (they pick up people at st. thomas also) and they take you to virgin gorda and to the norman island caves which were also amazing! i hope that this helps you and have a nice trip!!


rhode island
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9. Re: Is it worth the long trip to Virgin Gorda from St John?

YES..it's worth the trip !! the 1st yr we went to st. john we took a day trip to VG...haven't been back but it was a great day..i'd give some thought to checking out what the cruise ship schedule is for the Baths..i've heard it gets VERY crowded. we were lucky the day we went, no cruisers. a day in Jost is also a must. white Bay is one of the most beautiful places. Tortola is great but remember it's larger than St.John so it'll be tough to see all and explore. i love that island but with only a week you might consider saving it for you next trip to the vi's..maybe a split between st. john and tortola ??? have a great time whatever you do !!!

Lancaster, PA
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10. Re: Is it worth the long trip to Virgin Gorda from St John?

Hi - TylerCasey...who do you rent from when you do your own trips to other islands...I would like to do that as well when we are down in November, but know nothing about the cost, the ease of mooring or docking...Have been to day trip to Virgin Gorda, so I would love to go to Jost and possibly Tortolla - any advise/tips?

Thanks so much!

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