If you’re treating yourself with a bucket-list-worthy vacation that includes sailing around the spellbinding archipelago that is the US Virgin Islands or if St. Thomas is the lucky island that got to make it as your vacation destination for the year, you’ll surely be trying to find the best St. Thomas beaches to visit, and we’ve got you covered.
Naturally, being a Caribbean Island already gives it that level of awe that it so deserves, but St. Thomas has its own secret gems that make it that extra bit special.
Explore the best of St. Thomas and hike your way to secret beaches or sail across the waters before stopping at famous beaches. Hop in a taxi and spend the day at one of the party beaches, or venture to the coolest snorkeling spots on the island.
Let’s dive right into the St. Thomas beaches, what you can expect, the local amenities, and our top tips to help you choose the best beaches for you to visit.
BEST BEACHES IN ST. THOMAS
The top beaches in St. Thomas are scattered all around the laid-back island. The beaches below are the best of the best, with features such as hammocks and piña coladas to dive shops and jet-ski rentals.
- Amenities: Rent paddleboards or kayaks, and grab a bite at the restaurant or various food vendors. Bathrooms are available too.
- Access: Entry fee of around $5, but plenty of parking available.
- Nearby accommodation: Click Here for our top picks for Villas near Magen’s Bay
- Tip: Magens Bay isn’t the best for snorkeling. But if you swim a little way out to the rocky coast, you’ll most likely see some interesting fish species.
The first dreamy beach to make the list is the white sand beach of Magens Bay, loosely considered the best beach on St. Thomas. With over a mile-long stretch of soft sand, large tropical trees sweeping over the coastline, and spectacular views, Magen’s Bay is certainly charming.
But the bay is more than just a pretty face. As one of the most swimmable beaches, the calm turquoise waters are great for floating and swimming.
As this is one of the island’s busier beaches, it’s often populated with charted boats and yachts. If you’ve got the time, you should totally book yourself a cruise around the island!
- Amenities: Bar and Grill, Cafe, bathrooms, and taxi services. Plus the added watersport shacks.
- Access: Parking is available, and it’s just a short work to get to the pearly white shores.
- Nearby accommodation: Sapphire Bay Beach Resort is a collection of independently owned condos right on Sapphire Beach. Find our favorite condos here.
- Tip: Rent a ground floor condo for easy beach access(it’s our favorite spot on the island)
Sapphire Bay is on the eastern side of the island and a 20-minute drive from Charlotte Amalie. It’s the perfect quick escape from the bustle of the town. The wonderful beach is ideal for enjoying the delights of the sun, as well as being a haven for water sport enthusiasts.
Several sports shacks are dotted along the coast where you have the option of renting kayaks, snorkeling gear, and windsurfing equipment that makes for an adventurous trip to the beach. For a real adrenaline rush, rent a jet-ski or embark on a parasailing adventure from the Sapphire Bay Marina.
Another peachy aspect of the beach is that it’s not uncommon to spot wandering ducks wobbling along the shore or resident iguanas basking in the sun.
And to top it off, you can spend hours snorkeling in the shallow rocky ledges and reefs that are buzzing with sea life.
Read our Full Guide to Sapphire Bay Beach & Snorkeling HERE.
- Amenities: You can happily spend the entire day here with access to bathrooms, lifeguards on duty, and picnic tables.
- Access: Parking is available, but you’ll need to pay a small fee to access the beach. Non-residents can expect to pay $5 as well as $2 for parking.
- Nearby accommodation: There aren’t any places to stay on the beach, but it’s just down the road from Sapphire Bay Beach Resort Condos, or check out Point Pleasant Resort
- Tip: The beach is often quieter during the week, so if you’re looking for an excellent spot to unwind, this is the place!
Hidden along the edges of vegetation lies the off-the-beaten-path beach of Lindquist, where turquoise waters await. Lindquist Bay forms part of Smith Bay Park, a protected 21-acre area showing off the luscious tropical landscapes we love at the USVI’s.
Spend as much time enjoying the soft sand as you would enjoying the warm waters. Beachgoers can wander along the white sand and soak up all the magical views. Don’t be scared to get a little sandy either. Dash along the coast for a friendly game of frisbee or bring along a beach ball.
And if it couldn’t appear any more tropical, coconut grooves add that extra bit of beach magic. They’re also an excellent spot for escaping the afternoon sun or sneaking in a beach nap.
- Amenities: Restroom facilities, bar and grill, dive shop, gear and beach chair rentals on site.
- Access: Free parking available a short walk up the hill from the beach. Parking closet to the restaurant for customers. Taxis are also a great option with the smaller steeper roads.
- Nearby accommodation: Perched along the white shores is the Secret Harbor Resort, your best bet for staying practically right on the beach.
- Tip: Secret Harbour is where everyone seems to head for a sundowner overlooking the water. And, it’s one of our favorite spots for snorkeling on the island.
Secret Harbor is one of the smaller beaches on the island, but the quiet and protected bay allows for generally calm waters that are fantastic for snorkeling and swimming. All of the sailboats moored in the bay offer a gorgeous Caribbean sunset view that can be watched from the beach, restaurant patio, or even the swim platform in the middle of the bay.
Palm trees are scattered along the shore and create a picture-perfect tropical vacation. Hammocks make it even dreamier, along with floating rafts for catching some rays on the waters. Hop off the floating swim platform and explore the underwater life with your snorkel, underwater mask, and goggles.
In between reading on the beach and swimming in the waters, you can head to Sunset Grille Restaurant and Bar. Lobster and shrimp are the go-to for locals, but you’ll also find exciting dishes such as tempura octopus and Caribbean jerk ribeye steak.
Read our Full Guide to Secret Harbour Beach and Snorkeling HERE.
- Amenities: Thatched umbrellas and lounge chairs are available for rent. There are restaurants, changing rooms and bathrooms, as well as lockers for safety.
- Access: There is a small parking bay and roadside parking, as well as a taxi stand near the beach.
- Nearby accommodation: Wyndham Margaritaville is just a short walk from the beach
- Tip: For snorkeling with lots of tropical fish, swim toward Coral World exploring the rocky area along the way
Coki Beach is known around the island as being one of the most lively and diverse beaches. Some even call it the island party beach, particularly when cruise ships are in port.
The waters are usually pretty mellow and make for great snorkeling and swimming conditions. Because of its popularity, the local fish have become accustomed to humans and aren’t shy of eating straight from a snorkeler’s hand. However, PLEASE DO NOT FEED THE FISH! I know it’s tempting, but it’s very bad for them.
There are plenty of watersport rentals, waitresses on the beach, and even a playground for kids. With rentals of all kinds available, and even a dive shop on the beach, you’re sure to find whatever you need at Coki Beach.
- Amenities: Food Trucks and vendors, bathrooms, and outdoor showers
- Access: Roadside parking is available, and you’re almost guaranteed to find a spot. Taxis also travel here.
- Nearby accommodation: Emerald Bay Beach Resort is the closest to Brewer’s Bay which is away from most of the touristy areas and hotels. Most of the hotels and resorts in this area are older and more budget friendly.
- Tip: You’ll want to bring along your own snorkeling gear, beach chairs, and umbrellas for a relaxing day at the beach.
Unlike the island’s most popular beaches like Magens Bay and Coki Beach, Brewers Bay is a little secret gem that often takes travelers by surprise. The waters here are deemed the calmest on the island and gradually descend into deeper waters.
Not only is the beach a popular spot with locals, but it’s also popular with the chummy Hawksbill and Green Sea Turtles. If you’re hoping to get the chance to spy on these majestic creatures, the ocean floor is scattered with beds of seagrass – a sea turtle’s favorite meal.
One of the most fun things about Brewer’s Bay, besides the sea turtles, is watching the planes land. Brewer’s Bay is adjacent to the landing strip for the airport on St. Thomas, so you can watch all of the planes as they arrive on the island, all while snorkeling or relaxing on the beach.
- Amenities: Restaurant, Restroom
- Access: Free parking on site
- Nearby accommodation: For Hull Bay, we recommend one of these North Shore Villa Rentals
- Tip: For the best surfing experience, head to the beach when the waves pick up from around November to March.
While Hull Bay is a great snorkeling spot, it’s also a delight for surfers as well, and is considered to be the best surfing spot on St. Thomas. Very much a locals beach, if you stop by during windier winter months, you’ll probably be able to watch several surfers ride the waves.
Although it’s a tranquil beach, it carries a vibrant seaside lifestyle. Fishing boats are often seen bobbing in the waters, and pelicans float patiently next to the boats hoping to feast on their next meal.
- Amenities: The beach amenities are reserved for guests of the Ritz, so visitors need to bring their own chairs and umbrellas.
- Access: Guests largely use the beach at the Ritz, but you’ll find a public access road alongside the hotel’s main entrance. There is parking space for about eight cars.
- Nearby accommodation: The obvious choice is the Ritz Carlton, given that you’ll have the most comfortable access to the beach and the luxury amenities.
- Tip: There’s quite a bit of seagrass in the bay, but that makes it a place that you might be able to find sea turtles.
Great Bay shares its beauty with the Ritz Carlton, so naturally, you can expect to find wonderfully landscaped walkways, manicured palm trees, and exquisite restaurants and bars.
While it’s part of a luxury timeshare property, the beach is pretty quiet. This makes Great Bay a dream destination for travelers who are looking to unwind completely. While either reading a book, paddling in the waters, or strolling on the white sand beach.
The actual beach is tucked away from the rest of St. Thomas, purely because it’s the furthest point east. But this gives you the utmost privacy when it comes to appreciating your time at the beach.
- Amenities: As it’s one of the lesser-known St. Thomas Virgin Islands beaches, it doesn’t feature any amenities. So whatever you’ll need, you’ll have to bring along.
- Access: Get your walking shoes ready for a 20-minute hike to the beach. Road is on the map but is rarely accessible with huge potholes and flooding
- Nearby accommodation: Pretty secluded, there aren’t accommodations near Neltjeberg Beach, but we recommend one of these Villa Rentals
- Tip: This is kind of a “secret beach” and is difficult to reach- but that also means NO CROWDS
Nothing beats journeying to an island as marvelous as St. Thomas and still discovering a hidden gem. A particularly special part of this gem is that it requires a fun and short, but slightly treacherous, hike to reveal the sandy shores and classic Caribbean water.
And the journey is just as fun as the destination! Coconut trees line the path as well as a gentle stream.
You’ll start the hike from Dorothea Beach and mission through the forested landscape. Just be aware that there aren’t any signs, but it’s simple enough to follow.
Upon arriving at the secret beach, you’ll be blessed with solitude and breath-taking views. Continue stretching out the legs and walk along the beach before taking a dip in the waters.
- Amenities: Restrooms, watersports rentals, restrooms
- Access: Parking grants you easy access to the dazzling beach through the restaurant
- Nearby accommodation: Bolongo Beach is also the home to Bolongo Bay Resort, known for its famous all-inclusive package.
- Tip: Join Bolongo Bay’s fantastic ‘Snorkel Booze Hunt’, where bottles of rum are hidden beneath the water, and snorkelers can go out and search for them.
The best beaches, St. Thomas USVI, are often hidden in plain sight. Bolongo Bay, while quiet and one of the smaller bays on the island, still offers travelers a plethora of fun watersport activities and beach adventures. From kayaking and water bikes to jet skis and sailing experiences.
To the beach’s left, palm fronded umbrellas line the shore for a quiet and relaxing day on the beach. Hammocks and coconut trees can be found on the right. The shores are also home to a restaurant and bar to set you up for a full-day at Bolongo Bay.
- Amenities: Bathrooms, restaurant, jet-ski rentals, and dive shops are on the beach.
- Access: Parking and a quick walk to the beach.
- Nearby accommodation: Marriott Frenchman’s Beach Beach Resort sits above the beach and crystal waters.
- Tip: The public beach is only accessible from the hotel.
Marriott Frenchman’s Reef is a resort that shows off a quaint sandy shored beach, complete with a watersports booth for the much-loved water-based activities. Snorkeling gear and water floats are available to rent, which means you can easily spend all day hanging out at this gem.
As well as beach fun, you can enjoy island-inspired refreshments at the beachside bar and restaurant.
AN ADVENTURE AT THE ST. THOMAS USVI BEACHES
St. Thomas island beaches are a treat for most travelers. With the added touch of hammocks, beach shacks, and cocktail bars lining the shores, these beaches are blissful for those on vacation.
With superb snorkeling spots and plenty of snorkel gear rental shops, you can adventure through the turquoise waters and discover the ocean life. Above the water, journey on a yacht and stop at any one of these St. Thomas famous beaches.
Looking for the Best Snorkeling Spots on St. Thomas?? Find them HERE!
Want more guides for St. Thomas and the Virgin Islands? Check out all of our USVI guides HERE!