If you happen to be cruising Norwegian to Tortola and Cane Garden Bay in the near future, then you have made a few good choices in your life and it’s time to be rewarded. It’s about time, don’t you think? Powder white beaches, full green mountains, and hidden harbors await you on the island of Tortola, the British Virgin Island’s largest and capital island. Stroll or bask along the secluded palm-shaded white sands of dozens of beaches, including the original, Cane Garden Bay. Things could be much worse.
Warm, friendly and hospitable, Tortola has a wide variety of activities and places to stay, ranging from luxury resorts and private villas to a scenic campground. Of course, that doesn’t matter to the cruiser whose stateroom with a balcony awaits on the seventh floor deck. It’s just as much fun to resign on your own patch of heaven and enjoy the scenic vista that Tortola has to offer. Thank you Norwegian. Rather than a retirement home, I’m putting my parents on a permanent cruise.
Things To Do On Tortola
- Swim: Take a cleansing bath in what can only be characterized as the clearest water in this hemisphere. Along with a dozen other beaches, Cane Garden Bay serves as a secluded and protected harbor, perfect for everyone. The water is dialed in for those with a hesitation about swimming in the ocean. It’s perfectly clear and leaves very little to the imagination. For surfers who come on the right day, Cane Garden Bay is a lovely place to ride the waves.
- Bask: Rent a beach chair for only a few dollars and enjoy the eastern sun as you curl your toes into the soft BVI sand. Living near the beach, we understand the importance of daily beach maintenance such as the removing of trash and seaweed, but this place is a bit of the other. Here, they have not only removed all the trash and grass from the beach and water, but also all the shells and rocks. That doesn’t even seem easy. For that matter, where are all the fish? No bait fish, no patrolling jacks, not even any crabs, or even birds. This is certainly a new level of fancy.
- Drink: Local bars and restaurants line the beach with a variety of thatched huts from which to choose. The shuttle ride from Cane Garden Bay back to the ship is about twenty minutes so you’ll want to give yourself at least an hour to find your way back to your stateroom. Be wary. Time begins to move slower after a few rum punches or Painkillers. This is a blend of Pusser’s rum with 4 parts pineapple juice, 1 part cream of coconut and 1 part orange juice, well shaken and served over the rocks with nutmeg on top. Yummers. Since you’ve found your way to a restaurant, savor a plate of fish and fungi, the unofficial dish of the British Virgin Islands.
- Watersports: Depending on how much time you’re spending in Tortola, snorkeling and scuba options are readily available and boast some of the finest in the world. If fishing is more your bag, visit the protected anchorages at Brandywine Bay, Soper’s Hole, Trellis Bay and get on the big game at the North and South Drops. Remember you’re on a cruise ship. Catch and release only. There’s fresh fish waiting at the buffet line, right next to the prime rib and shoestring fries. A cruise is a great place to show off your class.
- Port: Save for a few jewelry shops, banks and restaurants, there’s really not much there. The quickest way around Tortola is a shuttle or taxi and they can help you decide where you want to go. Maybe you’re in the market for some gold. It’s still a great way to keep a woman.
Whether you’re in town for a few days or a few hours, make the effort to poke around. Cane Garden Bay is one of the quickest ways to enjoy the island but if you’re allowed a bit more time, find your own secluded patch of sand. Make no mistakes, adventure and beauty await you at every turn. You’ve found your way to St. Somewhere and it looks great on you.