As some of you know, Jeff and I have returned to the small island of Jost van Dyke in the British Virgin Islands to celebrate our 10-year wedding anniversary. We visited Jost van Dyke for the first time last February as a way to escape winter. We fell in love instantly and knew we would be back. This trip represents the first of many times this will be true…
For a bit of background, Jost van Dyke is the third largest British Virgin Island behind Tortola (20,000+ people) and Virgin Gorda (3500 people). A couple of hundred people live on Jost van Dyke, an island of about 8 square miles. By some, it has been called the “Last” Virgin Island. For us, it represents the most relaxing vacations we’ve ever taken.
Jost van Dyke is a quiet, unassuming island with stunning natural beauty and few of today’s expected amenities (ie, no resorts or restaurant chains, no Starbucks, no all inclusives). Instead, it offers up simple accommodations, local food, no crime (I mean, none), and exceptional beaches and scenery. So to vacation on Jost van Dyke is to vacation simply and freely. No worries at all. Our choice of accommodation is White Bay Villas, in a seaside cottage overlooking the breathtaking White Bay.
However, there is another way to see Jost van Dyke, and that’s as a day trip from the nearby US or British Virgin Islands. If you do it this way, the sky is the limit. We’ve seen everything from cruise ships (last February) and yachts (cha-ching!) to sailboats and dinghys moored on the far side of White Bay. They arrive around 11am, moor their boat, swim or dinghy ashore to buy a frosty beverage at one of the open air bars (the most famous of which is the Soggy Dollar bar), and then proceed to sunbathe, relax in hammocks, dance on the beach, or karaoke, to name a few. It’s like spring break all year round for everyone from college students to salty dogs. A jovial atmosphere, indeed!
It’s this unique combination of quiet simplicity on one side of White Bay (our side) and the more outgoing (sometimes Ibiza-like) craziness on the other side that make Jost van Dyke appealing to us (along with its stunning beauty, of course!). All of our mornings and evenings are serene and peaceful and the afternoons can be the same if we stay on our end or can be 100% different if we walk 5 minutes across the rock outcroppings that separate the 2 sides of White Bay. It amazes me how these 2 opposites exist in such a small area.
In addition to White Bay, there are other bays that can be reached by car and other small islands/spits that are a part of Jost van Dyke that can be reached by boat. While these are all beautiful, and certainly worth a trip, there is something about White Bay that draws Jeff and I to it. I’m fairly certain we could vacation here every year and never leave the bay and still be happy as clams.
Well, I’ll stop yammering now and share some pictures. And remember, if you want some more information, check out the captions for each picture (click the “i” button in the upper right corner of the gallery on a PC, or the button with 3 horizontal lines on flash-enabled device like ipads, to see the captions).