Getting to and around St. John can be frustrating, but it doesn’t have to be. After touching down in St. Thomas, skip the infrequent downtown ferry and instead take a taxi to Red Hook, where ferries leave hourly for the main town of Cruz Bay ($6 each way, plus $2 per bag). Once there, most visitors rent jeeps to get around, but that involves navigating roller-coaster-like back roads and dealing with goats and donkeys blocking your way. Alternatively, you can catch a safari taxi (from $6) just about anywhere if you wait for one to pass by, or even hitch a ride with locals by pointing your forefinger in the direction you’re headed and facing oncoming traffic. As for the beaches, they’re all public, but private waterfront properties often prevent access. It’s perfectly legal to access any spot by boat, however, so rent a dinghy from Noah’s Little Arks (340-693-9030; from $75 for a half-day) and go beach-hopping anywhere you like.
4. Insider’s Tip
Published on Apr 7, 2011 as a web exclusive.