St John plays host to thousands of visitors each year. And many guests choose the US Virgin Islands as their annual family vacation destination. St John, with it’s world renowned beaches and shallow-water snorkeling is listed among the TOP 100 Places to Take Your Kids (Frommer’s). So, here are our TOP PICKS for seeing and enjoying a St John vacation with your kids!
St John Outdoor Activities for Kids
The number one reason people visit St John is undoubtedly for the beautiful aqua blue waters and white sand beaches! Most of the beaches are located within, and protected by, the US Virgin Islands National Park. Protected from development – the beaches and reef systems that surround the beaches are some of the nicest in the Caribbean.
What beach day would be complete without ice cream? No worries, St John Scoops, located on the ground floor of Mongoose Junction, has just what you’re looking for. You’ll find amazing fresh-made ice cream in a myriad of tropical flavors. But, mom and dad can also enjoy one of Scoops adult flavors … like Stoli® Creamsicle, Boozeberry, Dark & Stormy or Painkiller ice cream.
Best St John Beaches for Kids
With so many beautiful St John beaches it’s tough to choose. But if you’ve got kids and strollers and cooler and chairs and snorkel gear and … well, you get the idea … then you want a beach that’s ..
• Easy access from parking to beach
• Shade or a place to escape from the sun
• Facilities, concessions … bathrooms, showers, food and drink rank high on this list
• Shallow, easy water entry with no strong currents or waves
• Snorkeling that falls within a child’s physical abilities and snorkeling experience
Maho Bay Beach
Parking is literally a stones throw from the beach. You won’t break a sweat making the trek with chairs and cooler and snorkel gear! And the beach … white sand lined with towering coconut palms and the shade of Seagrape trees. You’ll find bathrooms, picnic tables and grilling area / pavilion. But don’t expect a lifeguard or food/drink concessions.
Maho Bay’s north facing beach, and outlying cays, is protected from wind and waves. Water entry is shallow sandy bottom – ideal for younger kids. This shallow water extends 10-20 yards off the beach before transitioning to large seagrass beds. Feeding on these grasses are sea turtles, conch and rays. In fact, Maho Bay is one of our TOP PICKS for seeing sea turtles on St John. So get on your mask and fins and keep your eyes open for these amazing marine creatures!
Trunk Bay Beach
Jewel in the crown of the VI National Park is Trunk Bay. The most photographed beach in the Caribbean; and a perennial TOP 10 Caribbean Beach. And Trunk Bay deserves every bit of its fame!
Trunk Bay is perhaps the most family-friendly beach on St John. It is the only beach that charges an admission. It’s also the only beach with lifeguards. But you’ll also find showers, bathrooms, food and drink concessions and beach chair and snorkel gear rentals as well as picnic areas with grills and a covered pavilion.
Visitors will find nearly a 1/2 mile of white sand beach with palms and sea grapes as your backdrop. And only a few yards off the beach is Trunk Cay and the Virgin Islands National Park Underwater Snorkeling Trail. Follow the underwater markers which identify fish, corals and marine life that are common in these waters.
While the name might imply it’s for newlyweds and honeymooners – Honeymoon Beach is a great beach for kids.
Located within the USVI National Park and The Caneel Bay Resort, Honeymoon Beach has plenty of reasons to make it a family-friendly choice for a day of fun and sun on St John. Chief among those reasons would have to be the watersports concession, Honeymoon Beach Hut, run by Virgin Islands ecoTours. Here guests can rent kayaks, SUP ( stand up paddle boards), snorkel gear, beach chairs, hammock, lockers and more. There’s also a food and drink concession, Canella, run by Caneel Bay. Forgot your sunglasses? No worries, the Honeymoon Beach Hut also has a wide variety of souvenirs, snorkeling rash guards, sunglasses, tee shirts and more! Get your Honeymoon Beach All Day Pass, incl. kayak, sup, snorkel gear, float, chair and locker for just $49/pp! Best deal on St John.
Ask anyone that’s been to St John for their favorite beach and Hawksnest Beach is frequently their answer. With convenient parking and a short walk to the beach – it’s an ideal location for families!
Unlike some other beaches, Hawksnest has ample parking just off North Shore Road. And just a short walk from your rental Jeep you’ll find bathrooms, covered pavilions, grills and picnic tables ideal for families. What you won’t find are any food or drink concessions or snorkel gear rentals. So pack your cooler and beach chairs and head off for a wonderful day of fun and sun.
Hawksnest Beach is on Hawksnest Bay. A long stretch of white sand fringed with coconut palms and sea grape trees slopes down to aqua blue waters. Hawksnest Bay has seven named beaches including Hawksnest Beach at Caneel Bay Resort, Little Hawksnest Beach, Gibney Beach, Oppenheimer Beach and Mermaid’s Chair ( a tiny pocket beach dirtily across the bay from Hawksnest Beach).
Kid Friendly St John Villas
With over 800 rental villas on St John there’s sure to be the perfect vacation rental for your family’s size, lifestyle, interests and budget. And we’ve made the search both easy and fun. Simple click on the Villa Search Page. Select the number of bedrooms, $/NT and dates. Then click Show More Search Options. Check the box next to Children. And hit SEARCH. The results will show you a selection of rental properties that match your search AND allow children! Browse using the map to see the location for each villa on St John. And click the thumbnail to view details about the property and what makes it special!
St John RESOURCES – Babysitters and stroller rental, crib rental, car seat rental, etc
Family vacations usually center around kids and their activities. But parents may want to enjoy time as a couple. And that’s where these St John companies can help parents enjoy their time on St John.
Kids Night In Babysitting Service
Providing babysitting service in your villa on St John. Cash or checks accepted. Reservations requested. Call (321)431-9113 or visit http://kidsnightin.com/
Baby and toddler equipment rentals delivered to your villa. Call (340) 998-8327 or visit https://www.islandbabyvi.com/
Christy’s of St John
Providing baby equipment rentals, cribs, pack’n play, bouncers, strollers, video monitors, car seats and more! Call 340-776-6889 or visit http://www.christysofstjohn.com/rentals.htm
ST JOHN – FIND IT FAST DIRECTORY
Chelsea Drug – Marketplace, Cruz Bay, 2nd floor. web site
E&C Service Station – Past Marketplace/Starfish Market
Race Track Service Station – Over the hill ( Jacob’s Ladder ) near the Westin / St John Market
Starfish Market, Marketplace, Cruz Bay
Dolphin Market, at the rotary, Cruz Bay
Pine Peace Market, just after E&C Gas, Cruz Bay
St John Market, over the hill ( Jacob’s Ladder ) near the Westin
Wharfside Village, Cruz Bay, adjacent to the ferry dock
Mongoose Junction, Cruz Bay, across from the VI National Park Building, approx 3 blocks east of the ferry dock