St. Croix Travel Guides

Super useful & totally free travel guides, written by locals who love St. Croix

The author with the overlooking view in St. Croix
St. Croix is the largest US Virgin Island with a multicultural vibe and beautiful scenery found nowhere else.

Why We Love St. Croix St. Thomas is the city, St. John is the suburbs, and St. Croix is the country”. Time and time again, I’ve heard the three main US Virgin Islands described this way and it’s so fitting. Each island has its own unique character and St. Croix is no different. It’s rustic, laid back, beautiful, and multicultural. This is the Caribbean in its rawest and finest form.

Best of St. Croix

Things to Do

Tourists on a sailing boat and on the water of Buck Island
Visiting Buck Island is a must when visiting St. Croix

St. Croix offers a fair mix of outdoor adventures like scuba diving, sailing, and hiking along with a vibrant collection of Caribbean restaurants, beach bars, and colonial architecture.

  • Buck Island Reef National Monument – a thriving coral reef circles this pristine island and its white sand beach.
  • Annaly Bay Tide Pools – unique rocky outcroppings cradle ocean water suitable for a cooling dip after a strenuous cliffside hike.
  • Point Udall – witness the earliest sunrise in the United States at St. Croix’s easternmost point.
  • Sandy Point National Wildlife Refuge – the island’s best beach is open sparingly to protect the high rate of sea turtle nests.
  • Christiansted Boardwalk – a vibrant epicenter of bars, restaurants, and boat tours set in the historic town of Christiansted.

👉 See the full list of best things to do on St. Croix.

🗺️ Where to Stay

Compared to the other US Virgin Islands, St. Croix is much larger and spread out making where you stay rather important.

  • Christiansted – the largest community on the island, launching point to Buck Island, and home of the Christiansted National Historic District.
  • The North Shore – St. Croix’s north shore is home to many of the best beaches featuring oceanfront resorts.
  • East End – the quiet and secluded end of the island is dotted with private vacation rentals amidst its hills.
  • Frederiksted – the island’s cultural roots are evident around the second largest community as it overlooks the glassy, turquoise waters of the West End.
View of a dock at the main town of Christiansted
Christiansted is the main town and tourist hub of St. Croix

🛎️ Best Hotels

A staircase going to The Fred hotel
The Fred is a quaint hotel in Frederiksted

St. Croix features many beachfront resorts and boutique hotels in the vicinity of Frederiksted and Christiansted. 

  • The Buccaneer Hotel – the island’s premier resort with its own beaches, restaurants, and golf course just outside of Christiansted.
  • The Fred – beachfront, adults-only boutique hotel in the heart of Frederiksted.
  • Carambola Beach Resort – a secluded beach resort with its own sandy shoreline west of Cane Bay.

🍽️ Restaurants

With so many cultural influences from Latin America, Europe, the Caribbean, and US Mainland, the food scene on St. Croix is fantastic.

  • Ziggy’s Island Market – an unassuming, streetside eatery. With a rotational daily menu, the Caribbean-style food is always fresh and delicious.
  • The Mill – the best pizza on St. Croix along the scenic Christiansted Boardwalk.
  • Turtle’s Deli – massive sandwiches with an ocean view in Frederiksted – perfect for before or after a beach day.
  • Savant – fine dining with fresh seafood in the heart of Christiansted. A must-visit on St. Croix.
  • La Reine Chicken Shack – deliciously smoked chicken for simple, affordable, local fare.
View from the Ziggy’s Island Market
Ziggy’s Island Market is the best local food on the island.

🍹 Bars

A pig at the Mt. Pellier Domino Club
Visiting the Mt. Pellier Domino Club is an interesting experience, to say the least
  • Off the Wall – rustic beach bar with a wonderful atmosphere and scenic view of Cane Bay.
  • Rhythms at Rainbow Beach – a local gathering spot with live music, delicious food, and an epic sunset.
  • The Landing Beach Bar – unique dishes including fresh fish across the street from Cane Bay Beach.
  • Leatherback Brewing Company – the largest brewery in the US Virgin Islands with a large tap room and beer tours.
  • Mt. Pellier Domino Club – the beer-drinking pigs (non-alcoholic, of course) are the main attraction at this unique dive bar nestled in the rainforest.

🥾 Hiking Trails

The author during his hike in  Jack & Isaac Bay Trail at sunrise
Hiking the Jack & Isaac Bay Trail after watching the sunrise at Point Udall is the perfect start to the day
  • Jack & Isaac Bay Trail – The Nature Conservancy manages the rolling hills of St. Croix’s East End including the hiking trails to these two scenic beaches.
  • Annaly Bay Tide Pools – strenuous, yet rewarding, cliffside hike to crystal clear tide pools perfect for cooling off.
  • Buck Island Hiking Trail – moderate hike to an observation deck overlooking St. Croix on Buck Island.
  • Hams Bluff Lighthouse – riddled with potholes, the road to the trailhead may be more difficult than the trail itself. But the journey will be worth it after climbing the lighthouse.
  • Goat Hill – An excellent addition to the Jack & Isaac Bay Trail (or standalone hike) for stunning views of St. Croix and the surrounding waters.

🥾 See the full guide to the best hikes on St. Croix.

🏖️ Beaches

A man enjoying his day at the Sandy Point Beach
The beach in Sandy Point National Wildlife Refuge is among my favorite in the USVI.
  • Sandy Point Beach – one the busiest leatherback sea turtle nesting sites in the world keep this beach closed for most of the year. However, when open, it’s the best beach in the USVI.
  • Cane Bay – scuba divers love the epic wall dive at Cane Bay as the coral reef descends thousands of feet into the Puerto Rican trench.
  • Jack and Isaacs Bay Beach – two secluded beaches on the island’s East End accessible only after hiking.
  • Chenay Bay Beach – you’ll find soft sand, lots of sea turtles, and a quiet atmosphere at this beautiful beach in the Southgate Coastal Reserve.
  • Shoys Beach – the best beach within the Buccaneer Hotel property if coming from Christiansted.

🏖️ Read the full list of best beaches in St. Croix.

🏛️ Historical Sites & Ruins

The author visiting the Windmill ruins in St. Croix
Windmill ruins dot nearly every hillside on St. Croix
  • Christiansted National Historic District – a collection of historic buildings from the 18th century including Fort Christiansvaern and the Danish Customs House.
  • Fort Frederik – Danish fortification built in the 1750s to stave off pirates from the deep water port.
  • Estate Whim Sugar Mill – an interesting museum situated on an old sugar plantation highlighting the sugar industry and African slave trade that plagued the island for centuries.
  • Hams Bluff Lighthouse – Rusty, yet beautiful Danish lighthouse from 1915 with scenic views and a short hike.
  • Estate Mount Washington – beautiful remnants of a large-scale rum and sugar factory on the island’s West End.

St. Croix Travel Advice

🗓️ Best Time to Visit

With year-round warm weather, there’s never a bad time to visit St. Croix and the US Virgin Islands. Although, some seasons are more conducive for weather, budget, and crowds.

  • 🍂 Fall –  cheapest and most budget-friendly time of year to visit St. Croix – just look out for any potential hurricanes!
  • 🌞 Summer –  temperatures, and humidity are high during July and August before peaking in September. However, with slightly thinner crowds, this is a great time to visit.
  • ❄️ Winter –  Beginning in late November, the US Virgin Islands and St. Croix hit peak tourist season. The weather is amazing as flocks of tourists visit from the US mainland to escape the cold. Expect higher costs for airfare and hotels during this time of year.
  • 🌼 Spring –  much of the spring is still busy until the end of April. After April, May and June are the best times of the year to visit St. Croix and the USVI. The crowds are much thinner, costs are lower, and the weather is at its best!

🚌 Getting Around

St. Croix is a large island with very little public transit. The best way to get around is by renting your own vehicle upon arrival.

  • 🚶‍♀️ Walking – outside the town centers of Frederiksted and Christiansted, St. Croix is not a great destination for walking.
  • 🚗 Driving – the best way to get around is by renting a car in St. Croix. You can rent a car from the airport or in Christiansted at the Seaplane terminal or ferry dock.
  • 🚇 Public Transit – access to public transit is sparing and rather unreliable. We recommend renting a car.
  • 📲 Ride Share – ride shares like Uber and Lyft do not exist in the US Virgin Islands.
  • ⛴️ Ferries – to get to the other islands of St. Thomas or St. John, you’ll need to fly or take the ferry over.

🚌 For more, see my full guide to getting around St. Croix.

👉 Tips & Things to Know

  • 😀 – “Good Day!” – In the Virgin Islands, it’s customary to greet someone with an emphatic “Good morning!”, “Good Afternoon!”, or “Good Day!” as opposed to saying hello.
  • 🩲 – Cover Up – Just because you are on vacation doesn’t mean the people who live here are. If you’re not at the beach, it’s recommended to cover up.
  • 💸 – Expect to Pay More – Generally speaking, costs are higher in St. Croix so expect to pay a little more on just about everything.
  • 🚙 – Keep Left! – although it’s a US territory, we drive on the left side in the US Virgin Islands. If that’s intimidating, be sure to check out our article on driving in the USVI before you get behind the wheel!
  • 💍 – Duty-free Shopping – St. Croix and the USVIs enjoy tax-free shopping. As such, jewelry items are a popular purchase including the Hook Bracelet – a popular design crafted in St. Croix.

🧳 What to Pack

  • 🥾 – Hiking Shoes – between Jack & Isaac Bay Trail and Annaly Bay Tide Pools, you’ll want to bring hiking attire.
  • 🤿 – Snorkel Gear – coral reefs and sea turtles make common appearances off of almost every beach in St. Croix.
  • 🧴 – Reef-Safe Sunscreen – non-mineral based sunscreens are banned in the USVI to help protect our coral reef systems.
  • 🎒 – Dry Bag Backpack – sporadic rain showers, beach days, and boating activities are all great reasons to bring along a dry bag backpack to keep your belongings dry.
  • 👕 – UPF Clothing – sometimes sunscreen isn’t enough and it’s better to simply cover up entirely.

🤓 Facts & Info

  • Census Population (2020) – 44,004 (St. Croix), 87,146 (US Virgin Islands)
  • Time Zone – Atlantic Standard Time (UTC -4 / no daylight savings)
  • Area Codes – 340
  • Airports – Henry E. Rohlsen Airport (STX)
  • Nickname – Twin City
  • Demonym – Virgin Islander (USVI), Crucians (St. Croix)
  • TerritoryUS Virgin Islands
  • CountryUnited States of America

💵 Costs & Budgeting

  • 3 Star Hotel Room – $200 – $300 / night
  • 1 Bedroom Apartment Rental – $60 – $200 / night
  • Rental Car – $50 / day
  • Taxi Rates – ~$40 – $60 from the airport to Christiansted
  • Take Out Meal for Two – $30 – $40
  • Sit Down Dinner for Two – $60 – $100
  • Draft Beer – $7 – $10

FAQs About Visiting St. Croix, USVI

Is St. Croix safe for tourists?

Despite a surprisingly high crime rate, St. Croix and the US Virgin Islands are incredibly safe for tourists. We’ve written about safety in the USVI before with much of the article being extremely applicable to St. Croix.

Is St. Croix Worth Visiting?

St. Croix is worth visiting for an idyllic Caribbean destination featuring pristine, white-sand beaches, crystal blue waters, cultural experiences, and plenty of rum drinks at the local tiki bar. American citizens won’t be needing a passport, either, making it one of the easiest Caribbean islands to visit.

What’s the Nicest Part of St. Croix?

The North Shore of St. Croix is regarded as the nicest part of the island. Most of the large resorts line these sandy shores overlooking the calm waters of the Caribbean Sea. Vibrant bars, delicious restaurants, picturesque colonial architecture, and Buck Island boat tours depart nearby Christiansted adding more reason to stay along the North Shore of the island.

What is St. Croix Known For?

St. Croix is best known for its pristine beaches, epic scuba diving opportunities, Danish colonial architecture, sugar plantation ruins, rainforests, and scenic views along its mountainous terrain.

What is the Best Time of Year to Visit St. Croix?

The best time of year to visit St. Croix and the US Virgin Islands is between the months of April and June. This is when crowds from the island’s busy season dwindle, the weather is moderate with very little rainfall, and prices for airfare and resorts are much more affordable.

Meet Our St. Croix Travel Expert

Andrew Bloem

Andrew Bloem is an adventure travel writer from Fort Lauderdale, Florida. A pirate at heart, Andrew’s travels usually don’t stray too far from a palm tree and an ocean view. When he’s not writing guides for Travel Lemming, you can find him typing away at the local tiki bar for his site OceanWide Explorers.

👉 Read Andrew’s Articles

📰 US Virgin Islands Travel Guides

While visiting St. Croix, it’s easy to extend your trip by visiting the sister islands of St. Thomas and St. John. Start planning with these handy articles!

🗺️ St. Croix Map