Tag Archives: bvi

Abe’s by The Sea

Abe's Jost Van Dyke British Virgin Islands
Abe’s by the Sea, Jost Van Dyke, BVI

Abe’s by the Sea is one of my all time, world class, favorite restaurants. Specialties include fresh lobster and conch in creole sauce and the ambiance can’t be beat!

 

St. John Live Music Schedule

Wednesday 12/24

Aqua Bistro
Mark Wallace
5:30-8:30
340-776-5336

Beach Bar
Barefoot Davis
8:00
340-777-4220

Castaway’s
Karaoke Night
9:00 pm – 2:00 am
340-777-3316

Coconut Coast Studios
St. John Flutes
5:30 – 7:30
340-776-6944

Cruz Bay Landing
Matt Mirkut
6:00-9:00
340-776-6908

Shipwreck Landing
Chris Carsel
6:30-9:30
340-693-5640

Virgin Fire
Hot Club of Coral Bay
6:00 – 9:00
340 244-9713

Update me when site is updated

Parking for the Lind Point Trail

sunset from lind point battery overlook
Yesterday’s sunset seen from the Lind Point Battery Overlook

Virgin Islands National Park SignThe Lind Point Trail is a favorite hike for people coming to St. John by ferry or for those who don’t have a vehicle. That’s because the trail is within easy walking distance of downtown Cruz Bay and offers not only a great trail experience such as the great views from the Lind Point Battery Overlook, but also access to the beautiful beaches and snorkeling at Salomon and Honeymoon Bays.

But day-trippers are not the only ones who choose to experience the Lind Point Trail and most of these hikers arrive by vehicle. This presents a problem. Finding a place to park near the trail can be difficult, to say the least.

Now the Virgin Islands National Park offers a solution, of sorts. Hikers bound for the Lind Point Trail can go to the National Park Visitors Center located just across the street from the trailhead and obtain a parking permit that allows them to park in spaces reserved for the park employees. You’ll need to show the attendant at the center your drivers license, which they will hold until you get back. They will then issue you a  sign for you to place on your windshield. Be aware that empty employee’s parking spaces are limited and are often unavailable, and that parking anywhere else on the street will put you in danger of being ticketed by enforcement rangers.

Park back wheels to the curb, windshield facing out towards the street and enjoy your hike.

St. John and Virgin Islands News

List of the Friendliest Islands in the Caribbean from the Huffington Post

St. John came in number six, with the annotation: “What’s even nicer than “soft sand beaches” and “water that’s clear like glass”? The “warm, kind locals,” according to our readers—they’re ‘”friendly and welcoming, without pestering you.”‘

St. John was topped by the British Virgin Islands, which came in number five.

Vieques was number nine, and the number one spot went to the island of Saba…. read article

In another list compiled by the Nassau Guardian the Virgin Islands came in fourth:

Report Ranks V.I. Homicide Rate Fourth in Caribbean
By John Baur — January 16, 2014

The U.S. Virgin Islands rated fourth in the Caribbean in 2013 in the number of homicides per 100,000 residents, according to a study by the Nassau Guardian in the Bahamas.

… the island nation of St. Kitts & Nevis had the highest homicide rate in the region…. Jamaica’s homicide rate was second highest in the region…. and the Bahamas ranked third

Bordeaux Farmers Rastafari Fair This Weekend
By Molly Morris — January 16, 2014

It’s time again to gather up family and friends and head out to the rolling green hills of Bordeaux for the 17th annual Bordeaux Farmers Rastafari Agricultural and Cultural Food Fair on Saturday and Sunday. You’ll have no trouble finding it; just head west on St. Thomas and follow your nose. The heady aromas of fresh food will lead you.

The fair bursts with fresh produce, herbs, vegetables, cook pots filled with pumpkin soup, kallaloo, homemade vegan and raw food, pumpkin fritters – it goes on as it has for years, the annual celebration of all that is right with the world. It runs from 10 a.m. to midnight or thereabouts each day.

The fair is the proud product of the Bordeaux Farmers Collective We Grow Food Inc., illustrating the group’s belief: “To lose agriculture is to lose our culture, integrity, self-worth and pride. Without these characteristics, we as a people fail to exist.”… read more

St. John Live Music Schedule

Aqua Bistro
Stephan Sloan
5:30 – 8:30
776-5336

Beach Bar
Get Right Band
9:00
777-4220

Castaway’s
Mikey P
9:00
Dance Party
11:00
777-3316

High Tide
Mikey P
7:00 ish
714-6169

Island Blues
Brother Nature
8:00
776-6800

Morgan’s Mango
Lauren
6:30 – 9:30
693-8141

Ocean Grill
Rascio on Steel Pan
6:30 – 9:30
693-3304

Shipwreck Landing
Tropical Sounds
6:30 – 9:30
693-5640

Skinny Legs
Chris Carsel
Plus Comedian Tim Hofmann!
6:00 – 9:00
779-4982

Spyglass
James Milne
5:00 – 8:00
776-1100

See Weekly Schedule

St. John Weather

Scattered showers, mainly before noon. Mostly sunny, with a high near 79. East wind around 18 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%. New precipitation amounts of less than a tenth of an inch possible.

Update me when site is updated

Bubbly Pool, Jost Van Dyke, BVI

Bubbly Pool, Jost Van Dyke, BVISurf’s Up!

Surf’s up! Good news for surfers, not so great for beach goers and snorkelers. But a great time to visit the Bubbly pool on Jost Van Dyke, but be careful, the waves are big!

St. John Weather

High Surf Advisory in Effect

Today: Mostly cloudy with scattered showers early in the morning… Then partly cloudy with isolated showers in the late morning and afternoon. Highs around 84. Northeast winds 10 to 20 mph. Chance of rain 50 percent.

St. John News

Island Profile: Beverly Biziewski is a Straight Shooter
By Lynda Lohr — November 18, 2013

Longtime St. John resident Beverly Biziewski admits she says what’s on her mind.

“I confess I have a very big mouth,” she said, sitting still for an interview at the island’s Catherineberg sugar mill.

She said she says what everyone else thinks but lacks the – she couldn’t come up with quite the right word, but courage covers it – to say.

Yes, Biziewski is outspoken and asks personal questions others wouldn’t dare, but she’s got a big heart and gives back in many ways to the St. John community.

She’s president of St. John’s chapter of AARP of the Virgin Islands but has her fingers in many pies. They include the St. John Historical Society, the Audubon Society of the Virgin Islands, St. John Singers, and Nazareth Lutheran Church.

Long past the age of retirement – she won’t say how many – she still cleans houses for a villa management company to augment her funds. It was a job she first took to build her bank account so she could buy land and build her house…

Update me when site is updated

How to Avoid Data Roaming Charges when on St. John

Data Roaming

There are several places on St. John, especially on the north shore between Trunk and Cinnamon Bays, where your phone may pick up a signal from the British Virgin Islands that will result in exorbitant roaming charges. If you are in one of these locations, your phone will display “Lime” instead of AT&T, Sprint, Verizon etc. On my iPhone the name of the carrier and signal strength are displayed on the top left corner of the phone. Look out for “Lime” or Boat Phone,” they’re BVI-based and calls  will be expensive. Ironically, when on Jost Van Dyke and parts of Tortola where the cell signal will be handled cheaply by US Virgin Islands carriers. Check your phone to make sure.

Besides calls, the other danger occurs when you’re using mobile data like Safari, Google, Facebook, email or any other internet based app and you inadvertently move to an area where you’re picking up a BVI signal, in which case your cost for the data will skyrocket.

The best way to prevent this is to simply turn of data roaming on your phone.

(Data roaming means using mobile data in another country where charges are considerably higher than in the US when using the Internet abroad.)

To turn off data roaming:

iPhones
1- From the home screen tap Settings
2- Select General and then choose Mobile Data. On some iPhones, this might be called Cellular instead. On older versions of iOS, look for Network.
3- Choose Data Roaming and select Off

Android
Go to Settings
Select Wireless & networks
Select Mobile networks
Make sure the Data roaming option is not checked

 

Update me when site is updated

Willy T

Willy T
Willy T, The Bight, Norman Island, British Virgin Islands

William Thornton, Norman Island BVIThe William Thornton aka Willy T is a floating bar and restaurant that has been anchored in the Bight off Norman Island since 1985. The original Willy T was a wooden Baltic Schooner built in 1935, which sank at its mooring in 1995. The Willy T is most famous for some of the outrageous activities that regulatory occur aboard, especially during and after their popular Happy Hour. I’m talking ladies with no bathing suit tops,  group activities such as body shots, shotski’s (shots lined up on a water ski) ladies and gentlemen publicly having Willy T Temporary Tattoos applied to various body parts and of course, the now forbidden, but done anyway, jumping off the deck, more often topless than not.

– shotski’s- topless jumping off the deck – tattoos – body shots

St. John News

NOAA to Hold Public Meetings on Proposed Endangered Corals
By Lynda Lohr — February 1, 2013

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration will hold meetings next week to discuss the agency’s proposal to include 66 coral species on the Endangered or Threatened Species List. Seven of those proposed for the endangered list are in the Caribbean. Two are proposed for the threatened list…. read more

St. John Weather

Clear with rain showers in the morning, then partly cloudy
High of 82 degrees F.
Breezy: Winds from the East at 10 to 20 mph.
Sunrise: 6:51 AM AST – Sunset: 6:14 PM AST
Water Temperature (Charlotte Amalie Harbor, St. Thomas) 82.9 degrees F

St. John Live Music Schedule Sunday February 3

Aqua Bistro
Lauren Jones
3:30 – 6:30
776-5336

Beach Bar
Get Right Band
4:30
777-4220

Concordia
Bo
Sunday Brunch 10:00 am

Cruz Bay Prime
Mark Wallace
7:00 – 10:00
693 -8000

High Tide
Lemuel Callwood Steel Pan
4:00 – 6:00
714-6169

Miss Lucy’s
Sambacombo
10:00 am – 2:00 pm
693-5254

Ocean Grill
David Laab
6:30 – 9:00
693-3304

Rhumblines
T-Bird
7:00 – 10:00

Shipwreck Landing
Hot Club
7:00 – 10:00

Sun Dog Cafe
David Laab
11:00 am- 2:00 pm
244-9713

See Weekly Schedule

Update me when site is updated

Reef Bay Great House Over the Years

Photo by Jack Boucher 1960

2009

2011

2012

(1933 photo by Jack Boucher, 2009 photo by Gerald Singer, 2011 and 2012 photos by Shaun O’Boyle)

Reef Bay Great House
The Reef Bay Estate House, also known as the Par Force Great House was built in 1832 and reconstructed in 1844. In 1994, it was partially renovated by the National Park Service. After being cleared in 2009, the condition of the historic estate house has been left to deteriorate.

The great house can be accessed via a spur on the Lameshur Bay Trail

Love City Live Tonight
Love City Live – The Ultimate Power Boat Party – White Bay, Jost Van Dyke BVI 11:00 am – 6:00 pm. It’s a beach party only accessible by boat. As one writer put it “A late night of live music and quality rum deserves a proper cool down the next day.”

St. John Weather
High Surf Advisory
Partly cloudy with rain showers
High of 82 degrees F.
Winds from the North at 10 to 15 mph shifting to the ENE in the afternoon
Chance of rain 20%.
Full Moon
Sunrise: 6:53 AM AST Sunset: 6:10 PM AST
Water Temperature (Charlotte Amalie Harbor St. Thomas) 82.9 degrees F

St. John Live Music Schedule

Aqua Bistro
Lauren Jones
3:30 – 6:30
776-5336

Concordia
Bo
Sunday Brunch 10:00 am

Cruz Bay Prime
Mark Wallace
7:00 – 10:00
693 -8000

High Tide
Lemuel Callwood Steel Pan
4:00 – 6:00
714-6169

Miss Lucy’s
Sambacombo
10:00 am – 2:00 pm
693-5254

Ocean Grill
David Laab
6:30 – 9:00
693-3304

Rhumblines
T-Bird
7:00 – 10:00

Shipwreck Landing
Hot Club
7:00 – 10:00

Sun Dog Cafe
David Laab
11:00 am- 2:00 pm
244-9713

See Weekly Schedule

Update me when site is updated

St. John Stories: The Queen’s First Step at Soper’s Hole, BVI

West End Tortola
West End Tortola, circa 1967
Photo of West End Customs 2001

My first visit to West End (Sopers Hole) was in the 1970s. I was tied up along the seawall at Charlotte Amalie and approached by an agent from St. Thomas Dairies who hired me to deliver a load of milk to West End on Tortola. For some reason they couldn’t do it themselves that day, presumably due to one of the many contingencies that was, and still is, likely to occur here in the islands.

Arriving at customs at West End, I noticed a monument dedicated to the arrival of the Queen of England on her first visit to Tortola. A brass plaque read something like “where the Queen first stepped foot on the BVI.” Interestingly enough, the dedication was located far enough away from the edge of the dock that the Queen would have to have a have taken a mighty leap to set her royal foot down that far away from whatever vessel she was on that tied up to the dock.

Commenting on this to a BVI local, it was explained that the original monument was indeed erected at the exact spot where the Queen actually stepped foot. (see above photo) In actual practice, however, this was an inconvenient place for the monument as it interfered with the loading and offloading of cargo on the dock.

It was in response to this difficulty the dedication was moved away from the loading area, explaining the British monarch’s seemingly extraordinary disembarkation at Soper’s Hole on the island of Tortola, BVI.

St. John Live Music – Friday April 13

Aqua Bistro – Steve Sloan – 5:30 – 8:30 – 776-5336
Beach Bar – Jon Beninghof Band – 9:00 – 777-4220
Castaways – Mikey P – 9:00 – 777-3316
Cinnamon Bay – Eddie Bruce Drum Circle – 6:30 – 8:00
Cruz Bay Prime – James Cobb – 7:00 – 10:00 – 693 -8000
Driftwood Dave’s – John W Lee -7:00 – 10:00 – 777-4015
Island Blues – Slammin – 776 6800
Morgan’s Mango – Lauren – 6:00 – 9:30 – 693-8141
Ocean Grill – T-Bird – 6:30 – 9:00 – 693-3304
Rhumblines – Erin Hart – 7:00 – 10:00
Spyglass – James – 5:00 – 8:00 – 776-1100

See Weekly Schedule

Update me when site is updated

Turtle Hunting in the British Virgin Islands

When I first arrived in the Virgin Islands, turtle sightings were rather rare. At that time turtles were hunted for their meat, their shells and their eggs. A 1973 law, protected the turtles in US water and prohibited the harvesting of their eggs. Since then, most other Caribbean nations have either banned or limited turtle hunting and now, at least for the Green and Hawksbill species, they seem to be rather plentiful

Nonetheless, the illegal poaching of turtles continues to some degree and some nations like the British Virgin Islands have established a legal season for hunting turtles for subsistence purposes. In the BVI turtles are used primarily for their shells as decorations, while their meat is consumed mostly by indigenous islanders.

Turtle season In the BVI runs from December 1 through March 31 and allows for the harvesting of both Hawksbill and Green Turtles, but hunting Loggerhead or Leatherback turtles is prohibited and the collection of turtle eggs is banned.

The hunting, storage, and slaughtering of turtles is a cruel business and in today’s modern Caribbean where turtles serve better as tourist attractions than for decorations or dinner, many people would like to see Turtle hunting completely prohibited.  A Facebook group has been established to try to End Sea Turtle Hunting Season in the British Virgin Islands

BVI Law Concerning Turtles
1) No person shall

(a) disturb, remove from the fishery waters, expose for sale, sell, purchase or have in his possession any turtle’s eggs;
(b) interfere with any turtle nest or turtle that is nesting;
(c) remove from the fishery waters, expose for sale, sell, purchase or have in his possession any undersized turtle or catch a leatherback turtle or loggerhead turtle on which there is a moratorium;
(d) set within 100 meters of the shores of the Virgin Islands any net, seine or other article for the purpose or with the intention of fishing for, catching or taking a turtle; and
(e) fish for, remove from the fishery waters, or at any time have in his possession, expose for sale, sell or purchase any turtle from 1st April to 30th November in every year or as otherwise stated by the Minister by notice published in the Gazette and in a newspaper circulating the Territory.
(2) In this regulation.
(a) “turtle” means the whole or any part of a turtle;
(b) “undersized” means a carapace (shell) length less than
(i) 24 inches for green turtle
(ii) 15 inches for hawksbill

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Photo of the Day: Sandy Cay Rainbow

Sandy Cay, British Virgin Islands

Laurance S. Rockefeller purchased Sandy Cay in the 1950s, around the same time as his purchases of vast tracts of land on St. John. On St. John, Rockefeller turned this land, with the exception of the coastal area and beaches from Salomon to Hawksnest Bays, over to the National Park. The land that he kept was developed and eventually became the exclusive Caneel Bay Plantation, managed by Rock resorts. (The word “Plantation” was later changed to “Resort” probably because of its inherent political incorrectness.)

Meanwhile Rockefeller managed Sandy Cay creating his own little botanical garden. For many years the man on the ground there, doing much of the actual work, clean up, trimming and planting was Jost Van Dyke’s own “Nippy,” who to this day maintains a small business selling his wares to captains, crews and passengers of visiting yachts from his little dinghy “the traveling salesman.”

On May 1, 2008 Sandy Cay was transferred from the Rockefeller’s estate to the government of the British Virgin Islands and the island is now managed by the BVI National Parks Trust.

Rats were eliminated from the island in 2002 and in 2010 moorings were placed off the beach on the west side of the islands.

My modeling debut - Sandy Cay circa 1996

The above photo is an outtake from a photo shoot on Sandy Cay around 1996, when I filled in for the “old” male model, who didn’t make it down for the shoot.

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