St Croix, USVI Copy

As a licensed broker associate with Coldwell Banker St. Croix Realty, int he U.S. Virgin Islands, I can help you find your piece of paradise.  Let me introduce you to the beautiful island of St. Croix.


Where is St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands?
Positioned approximately 1100 miles southeast of Miami, Saint Croix lies about 40 miles south of St. Thomas and St. John.

These islands are separated by a deep oceanic trench, a marvel of nature that plummets over 10,000 feet, marking the deepest in the Atlantic basin. Saint Croix boasts exquisite white sand beaches and invitingly warm, crystal-clear waters encircled by an intricate reef system. However, navigating these waters demands the expertise of seasoned sailors due to the surrounding reefs. While all beaches are open to the public, it’s vital to respect waterfront property boundaries; the ‘public’ segment of the beach extends only 15 feet up from the high tide waterline, beyond which lies private property. This remarkable island not only offers stunning natural beauty but also adheres to respectful coastal etiquette.

St. Croix, the largest of the U.S. Virgin Islands, carries a rich history marked by diverse colonization. Spanning 84 square miles, it mirrors a blend of cultures, having flown under seven flags including Spain, Great Britain, and the United States.

Caribbean Island Chain Map US Virgin Islands Map


History of St. Croix
Originally inhabited by the Tainos, later joined by the Caribs in the 1400s, the island encountered Columbus on his second voyage. Conflict arose when Spanish adventurers raided for Carib slaves, leading to the Caribs’ abandonment of St. Croix due to a Spanish decree.

Sugarcane dominated the island’s economy, yet the abolition of slavery and the introduction of East Indian indentured labor reshaped its course. Notably, the Fireburn labor revolt of 1878, led by four influential women, reshaped the island’s history.

Discovered by Columbus in 1493 at Salt River, St. Croix’s diverse terrain spans from arid landscapes to lush hills and small rainforests. Despite its compact size, the island boasts pristine beaches and varying landscapes from east to west.


Things to know
Natives to the island are called Crucians or “Cruzans” (not Jamaicans, as a friend of mine said when visiting :-).  The locals, Cruzans, are fun-loving, polite people and very proud of their island.  Here are a few tips that I learned after moving to the island:

Island Attire  – Enjoy the tropical heat but opt for more than just your swimwear when exploring. Locals lean towards conservatism, so strolling in town or grabbing a bite might raise eyebrows if you’re solely in a bikini or your swim trunks.  

Courteous EncountersPoliteness is key – greet people with a formal, but warm “good morning,” “good afternoon,” or “good night.”  Locals will greet you as they pass you on the sidewalk, enter a business, and even as they enter a building such as a post office.  Overlooking such niceties is considered impolite.  The one that took a while for me to get used to was being greeted with ‘good night’ when walking into a restaurant for dinner.  ‘Good night’ is typically used after 5 pm.  So don’t be surprised when you hear ‘good night,’  rather than a ‘hello’ or ‘good evening.’  And if you’re like me, you’ll pause a moment and think, ‘What?  I’m not going to bed yet!”

Respect Local LifeThe islands offer much to explore, but locals aren’t part of the attractions. Treating Virgin Islanders with respect. Avoid condescension or patronizing attitudes – they won’t be well-received.  But if you genuinely have questions about their culture, ask, respectfully and politely.  The locals love to share their culture with others.  

Adjust Driving EtiquetteThe island’s traffic pace may surprise you. Islanders take a leisurely approach; encounters on the road might lead to impromptu chats. Don’t get flustered, skip honking AT other drivers, and definitely refrain from yelling. Just maneuver around them calmly.  And (this one took some time to get used to), when you are stopped in traffic waiting to make a turn, it is very common for a local in oncoming traffic to stop, regardless of the traffic behind them, and honk the horn to signal you to make your turn.  Most importantly, remember we drive on the left on the island.  That is often forgotten by tourists and newcomers when turning onto a road, while at intersections, and in parking lots.  As my husband always said, “Keep your A– in the Grass.’  

Protect the Reefs – I feel like this is something that isn’t talked about enough.  When visiting the beautiful Caribbean islands, you will experience some of the most breathtaking views when swimming, snorkeling, or diving. Although there are signs posted, we’ve witnessed too many tourists walking on the reefs…because they just didn’t know not to.  Please avoid standing on, walking on, and/or touching the corals as this can severely damage or kill the fragile coral that takes hundreds of years to grow. Additionally, injuries sustained from coral take a long time to heal.  Remember, coral is protected in national parks, and collecting it is illegal.  You can learn more about how to protect the Coral Reefs here.  And, of course, please use sunscreen with only zinc oxide or titanium dioxide.  Even though the sunscreen may say ‘reef friendly,’ read the label because it may still include ingredients that can harm corals. 


Major Towns on St Croix
St. Croix features two distinctive towns; Christiansted and Frederiksted.

Christiansted, rich in heritage and known for its stunning Danish architecture, boasts historic churches, serene courtyards, and picturesque walkways adorned with antique lampposts, stone arches, and meticulously restored townhouses.  Explore all the delightful shops, boutiques, art galleries, and inviting cafes and restaurants and discover landmarks such as Fort Christianvaern, the Steeple Building, Customs House, and the Old Scale House, each adding to the city’s unique allure. Stroll the boardwalk and take in the beauty of the harbor and the sea views, and be sure to hop on the 5-minute ferry to plan a day at Hotel on the Cay relaxing at the beach, swimming, snorkeling, and enjoying live music at the beach bar! Check out the live webcam from The Christiansted boardwalk here.

Christiansted Map

Christiansted Map

Hotel on the Cay

Hotel on the Cay, Christiansted, USVI

On the west end of the island, Frederiksted, smaller yet picturesque, experienced a revival with the return of cruise ships in 2008. Whenever a cruise ship docks at the port, the town transforms into a vibrant hub bustling with local artisans showcasing their crafts, tantalizing aromas from food and drink stalls, the rhythmic beats of live music, and the mesmerizing sight of dancing Mocko Jumbies. Frederiksted’s highlight is Fort Frederik, a historic site where slavery was abolished in 1848, now transformed into a captivating museum by the waterfront.  Check out the live webcam feed from the Fred Resort in downtown Frederiksted here.

Fredericksted Map Frederiksted Cruise Ship

Both towns provide delightful shopping and dining experiences. St. Croix’s history is evident through scattered sugar mill ruins and historic plantations, recalling its past reliance on agriculture and slavery. Visitors can enjoy duty-free shopping, diverse land activities, and water sports, ensuring a fulfilling stay.

Nature enthusiasts can explore Buck Island Reef National Monument’s snorkeling trails, Sandy Point National Wildlife Refuge, lush rainforests, and botanical gardens teeming with vibrant flora and fauna. Notably, St. Croix is home to the Cruzan Rum factory and a state-of-the-art distillery, annually producing vast quantities of Captain Morgan rum, adding a flavorful touch to the island’s allure.


What’s the Weather Like?
You will enjoy a subtropical climate on St. Croix, where the average temperature remains around 82°F/28°C throughout the year. The pleasant easterly trade winds maintain comfortable humidity levels. With minimal temperature fluctuations between seasons, summers peak around 86-89°F while winters linger at 82-84°F. Rainfall, approximately 50 inches annually, keeps the island lush, mostly arriving in late spring and fall, ensuring plenty of sunny days. September/October poses a higher hurricane risk, although major storms typically occur during these months, with rare exceptions outside the usual hurricane season.


23 Beaches
St. Croix’s coastline is a captivating canvas inviting visitors to indulge in the natural beauty of it’s beaches for hours or even an entire day. Stretching along the shores are secluded havens of stunning beaches each with its own identity.

St Croix Beaches


Dive Sites
On the beautiful island of St. Croix, the beauty doesn’t just stop at the surface – it’s a world of wonders both above and below the waterline. Dive enthusiasts are in for a treat with a diverse array of dive sites that are easily reachable by boat and, in some instances, right from the shore. The marine life surrounding St. Croix is teeming with vitality; you’ll encounter over 500 fish species, 40 kinds of coral, and a plethora of invertebrates inhabiting these waters.

Imagine encountering sea turtles, blue tang, queen angelfish, spiny Caribbean lobster, spotted eagle rays, seahorses, pufferfish, and reef sharks among the many other fascinating creatures that call the varied underwater landscapes of this island home. St. Croix stands out in the Caribbean as the place where you can explore a wreck, a wall, a pier, and a reef all within a single exhilarating day of diving. Don’t hesitate – dive right in; the water’s an absolute paradise!

St Croix Dive Sites