post

Cow Wreck Beach, Anegada, BVI

Cow Wreck Beach Anegada – Day or overnight charter from St. John

There are some awesome beaches on St. John but  cow wreck beach on Anegada is a totally different level of amazing. It’s one of the most pristine beaches in the BVI with water so turquoise and sand so pink it’s unbelievable. Different from St. John beaches, there is a beach bar / restaurant right by the water. So you can sip a cold beer or have some fantastic lobster right on the beach. Enjoy a Wreck Punch, Bushwacker, Painkiller, Pina Colada, Banana, Strawberry or Mango Daiquiri. Or try their famous “Cow Killer” always served with a smile and a pleasant chat about Anegada and the BVI. The restaurant serves up fresh all day lunch and dinner. Local specialities include lobster, conch and fish, and the steak, ribs and chicken sizzle to perfection on a grill fueled by local wood.

Cowreck Beach is lined with conch shells that look very pretty and there are some comfortable wooden loungers right on the beach.

Where does the name “Cow Wreck Beach” come from?

In the 1800s, a ship carrying cow bones (used at the time to make chalk and buttons) wrecked on the reef just offshore of a small sandy cove on the northwest coast of Anegada. For years afterwards these bones washed ashore and hence the cove became known as Cow Wreck Beach.

cow-wreck-beach-anegada-bvi-stjohn-daytrip

Cow Wreck’s exquisite beach is one of the very best in all of the BVI. It is an ideal place for wading and swimming. The water near shore is only waist deep with a perfect sand bottom. Kids can play in the sand while you lime only steps from our bar. You can walk for miles, watching the sand and water change colors before your eyes, and not see another person!

cow-wreck-beach-bar-anegada

Watch the sunset at Cow Wreck Beach

Cow Wreck is also perfectly located to watch a spectacular sunset if you opt for our overnight trip to Anegada.

cow-wreck-beach-anegada-sunsset

Charter St. John Anegada – Online Booking

Book your day or overnight trip from St. John to Anegada here or send an email to rockhoppinusvi(at)gmail.com

post

Day Trip: See the best of St. John in one day private charter

Looking to spend a great day on the water with no passport hassles? Our boat has a permit for the National Park, so we can take you to the most beautiful places on St. John on our “Best of St. John in one day” day trip. This is also a great trip for people visiting St. John for the first time, you will get a great overview of what is where, the captain can show you all the hot spots from the water and give you the best tips of where to go for your following days on the island.
Read More

post

Which BVI should I visit on day trip from St. John?

You are planning a trip to St. John and are wondering “‘Which BVI should I visit on day trip from St. John“? Well, firstly you can’t go wrong every single island is beautiful. Secondly, don’t overplan or overthink it! Our captains are really flexible and you can always change itinerary during the day based on weather, wind and what you feel like doing. Still, here is a brief outline to help you choose the right trip for you!

which-bvi-to-visit-on-day-trip-from-stjohn-usvi

Beach, Bar, Drink & Party


Snorkel, Beach, Bar & Drink


“I want to go back to Soggy Dollar but see more than that!”

  • B-Line (Little Jost van Dyke, Beach Bar & Snorkeling), Bubbly Pools, Sandy Cay, Jost van Dyke (Soggy Dollar)

“I want to see it all!”

  • Virgin Gorda, Norman Island & Jost van Dyke. Yes, our boat is fast and we can do all islands in one day and get a bit of everything, beautiful Nature at The Baths, Snorkeling at Norman and Drinks at Willy T. and  to end the day at Soggy Dollar bar.

Relaxation away from crowds / Good food & Snorkeling


Beautiful Nature


“I have no passport / Don’t want to pay BVI Customs”


Family Fun


“I have not been on boats much and am afraid I might get sick!”

  • Start with  Jost van dyke, our boat is fast and was built for offshore fishing – it will be a quick, smooth ride of 20mins.

“I want to spend some romantic couple time”

  • B-Line, Sandy Cay, Sandy Spit and Soggy Dollar (Jost van Dyke Trip)
  • Peter Island: visit their spa & resort for some romantic couple time and then head to Jost van Dyke afterwards.

“I want to paddleboard

  • Virgin Gorda. Paddling around the boulders is a truly otherworldy experience. If you don’t want to go that far, Jost, B-Line and Sandy Cay are also nice. If you are an experienced paddler you can do a downwinder from Sandy Cay to Soggy Dollar.

“I want to go snorkeling & fishing!”

  • Try our half day snokel & half day fishing combo
  • Or go to Norman Island for Snorkeling, Wily T. or Pirates and then we can go back along the South Shore and fish all the way back (Jost van Dyke stop not possible in this option)

“I have seen it all! –  show me something completely different and stunning!”


half-day-powerboat-charter-best-of-stjohn


“I need to see how it looks like there!”

Watch the videos below…..


While the choices are unlimited our pricing is simple

Price is based on the furthest island, all other stops are included. The price includes captain and fuel – no hidden extra charges. Not included are BVI customs and mooring fees and gratuity for the captain. We provide water and ice and you can use our Easybreath full face masks for free.

  • Sunset Cruise: 250$
  • Half day USVI: 400$
  • Jost van Dyke or Full day St. John: 650$
  • Norman: 800$
  • Cooper or Peter: 850$
  • Virgin Gorda: 950$
  • Anegada: 1050$

Island by Island Overview


Jost van Dyke, BVI (closest to St. John)

day-trip-stjohn-jost-van-dyke

Named for an early Dutch settler and former pirate, rugged scenery and colorful folklore make up Jost Van Dyke.  With fewer than 300 inhabitants, it measures just four miles by three.It retains the island culture that much of the Caribbean has lost. Jost Van Dyke is a little island with a big reputation. It is also home of the Soggy Dollar Bar, the bar that invented the famous Painkiller Cocktail.

If you only want to visit one island, Jost has it all. White Bay is one of the best beaches in the world, Soggy Dollar always makes it on the top 10 beach bar lists and there are a more bars, restaurants and shops to roam around. A day trip from Jost van Dyke.


Norman Island, BVI

pirates-bight-norman-island-bvi

Norman Island sits East of St. John and just seven miles south of Tortola at the southern tip of the British Virgin Islands. It is 2.5 miles long with a total land mass of only 600 acres and feels like it is a million miles from anywhere. It is one of a number of islands reputed to be the inspiration for Robert Louis Stevenson’s pirate novel Treasure Island.

After Jost van Dyke it is second closest to St. John. While there is not much to see on the island itself, Norman Island is home to Pirate’s Bight (Pictured above), infamous floating Bar Willy T. and some of the best BVI snorkeling spots (Indians, Caves, Aquarium etc.)


Cooper Island, BVI

cooper-island-bvi

Cooper Island sits East of Norman Island and is home of Cooper Island Beach Club. It is a more upscale and relaxed setting vs. for example Soggy Dollar bar and the food is just great. There is also some good snorkeling. It’s not a place where you want to spend the whole day but it is great for a relaxed lunch or afternoon.


Virgin Gorda

the-baths-virgin-gorda-powerboat-charter-paddleboarding

Virgin Gorda is the third-largest (after Tortola and Anegada) and second most populous of the British Virgin Islands (BVI). Christopher Columbus is said to have named the island “The Fat Virgin”, because the island’s profile on the horizon looks like a fat woman lying on her side. It is a bit of a longer, more expensive ride from St. John.

The Baths are Virgin Gorda’s most famous attraction. They are a sublime jumbled collection of sky-high granite boulders. The rocks are made of volcanic java from about 70million years ago and form a series of grottoes that fill with water and shafts of kaleidoscopic sunlight and look truly otherworldly.


Peter Island

peter-island-day-trip-stjohn

is home to Peter Island Resort & Spa, a casually elegant British Virgin Island resort and spa hidden away on an 1,800-acre oasis of tranquility. It is a great place to spend some romantic couple time before heading to Jost van Dyke to end the day with some painkillers.


Anegada

sup-charter-stjohn-powerboat

Anegada is the northernmost of the British Virgin Islands and a much longer ride. It lies approximately 15 miles (24 km) north of Virgin Gorda. Anegada is formed from coral and limestone, rather than being of volcanic origin. While the other islands are mountainous, Anegada is flat and low. It is the only all-coral atoll in the VI and a mere 28 feet above sea level. That’s the place where we ourselves go to relax, it is so small, quiet and laid back.

Going to Anegada for a day can be a bit of a stretch (depening on ocean and due to customs hours), you might consider doing a customs overnight trip to truly have time to explore it’s beauty

 

 

post

Rockhoppin’ Charters – Boat Trips out of Cruz Bay, St. John

We offer private boat charters out of Cruz Bay, St. John, USVI. Our Powerboat is a 32 FS Regulator with twin Yamaha 250s and based in Cruz Bay, St. John. It is a very comfortable charter boat with cushioned, forward-facing seating and it is fully licensed and insured. It will provide a very comfortable, mostly dry ride. Our  experienced Captains Steve and Tyler can take you to any destination in the USVI or BVIs.

St. John, Power Boat Charter Options:

(click on Option for more information)

  • Day Trips (USVI & BVI Waters) from 600$ incl. captain and fuel

  • Half Day Trips (USVI Waters only) 4000$ incl. captain and fuel

  • Sunset Cruises (USVI Waters only) 250$ incl. captain and fuel

These are private, captained charters for you and your friends / family. We do occasionally also offer shared trips.

Read More

post

Sunset Cruise – Powerboat Charter

Sunsets on St. John are spectacular. In winter months, the skies at sunset glow with the most spectacular hues, blooming with pinks, reds and oranges. In summer months, the whole sky can be lit up in orange.

sunset-cruise-stjohn

The fabulous St. John sunsets are even more beautiful from the water. Imagine sitting on the boat, sipping a cold drink and seeing the sun drop into the water or behind the rock. If you get really lucky, you might even see the famous green flash. The green flash are optical phenomena that appear on the horizon, usually the ocean, just after the Sun rises or sets. It is a flash of green light that lasts for about a second or two. Sometimes (rarely) the green flash can resemble a green ray shooting up from the sunset (or sunrise) point. Green flashes occur because the atmosphere can cause the light from the sun to separate out into different colors.

rockhoppin-sunset-cruise

Go on a sunset cruise from Cruz Bay, St. John

Our sunset cruise typically leaves at 5:00 PM and returns to Cruz Bay around 7:30 PM. We cruise along the North Shore beaches.
The price is 250$ (including fuel). It is in USVI waters only (since customs offices closes at 5pm). We provide water and ice. You can bring your own food and drink or we can arrange for food from a local restaurant or caterer.

Sunset Cruise Video

Ready to go?

Book your unforgettable St. John sunset cruise here

You can use the calendar below to directly make a booking (select date and hit book now). Not sure yet? Then you can also send us a Booking Enquiry with this form or email rockhoppinusvi(at)gmail.com or text 340-514-5527.


Online Booking

Select your date and pay a 150$ deposit. The rest is due on day of charter (after trip, cash, card or cheque). All prices include captain and fuel. Not included: BVI customs/mooring fees and gratuity

SUP St. John – Paddleboard Lessons & Rental St. John, USVI

Learn to paddleboard in one of the world’s most stunning SUP destinations! St. John with it’s beautifully turquoise, clear, warm water is ideal for  paddleboarding. It is great for beginners, who can learn to paddle in calm, protected beaches but also experienced paddlers won’t get bored. They can do challenging crossings, circumnavigations and downwinders or go surfing! Or you can try out SUP Yoga.

rockhoppin-paddleboarding-stjohn

Our paddleboarding division, SUP St. John teaches you how to Stand Up Paddle.

rockhoppin-paddleboarding-stjohn-usvi

If you have paddled before,  know what you are doing and don’t require a lesson, or prefer to try by yourself, for example with a video tutorial, we also have high quality  Fanatic, SUP USA, Lahui Kai, Starboard and Liquid Shredder paddleboards (Allround SUPs in 11’6″, 11″ and 10″, Touring Sups, Carbon Raceboards in 12’6 & 14′, Kids SUP,  Inflatable SUPs, Family SUPs and Wave SUPs) and paddles for rent (including complimentary delivery). More information can be found in the respective sections of the SUP-Stjohn website.

PADDLEBOARD LESSONS

PADDLEBOARD RENTAL

FOR FULL INFORMATION ON OUR SUP OFFERING HEAD OVER TO SUP-ST.JOHN

We are a paddleboard- friendly charter and don’t mind you taking your SUP on the trip. You can also rent one from us for a special price for your day trip on the boat! (50$ per board per day instead of 65$). Plus, with weekly rental of 2 or more paddleboards, you will get a 10% discount on any day trip!

DSC_6874

 

 

post

September Update: USVI back open, BVI set to re-open December 1st

Are the USVI open for visitors?

St. John is back open for visitors. All visitors from age 5 onwards need negative covid-19 test maximum 5 days old or positive antibody test.

For latest official updates, check out www.usviupdate.com

When do the BVI re-open for visitors?

The BVI are currently closed for visitors but set to re-open December 1st

We are awaiting further details on their entry requirements.

Until then, we would love to show you the best of the USVI on a half day, 3/4 or full day trip in USVI waters

  • We can go snorkeling/sightseeing to the cays north of st. john and other places that cannot or cannot easily be reached by car/foot/swimming.  For example: Mermaids chair, Whisling Cay, Congo, Mingo, Lovango, Xmas cove, Waterlemon, Tektike, Booby Rock and more.
  • You can swim in hike up reef bay to the waterfall and petroglyphs (easy 20min hike up from water vs. full day hike down and up from centerline if you do it by car)
  • As for bars, the options are more limited vs. the BVI. Lime out will be open October 5 and is included in the full day all around st. john trip. Pizza Pi stop is included in any of the trips, we don’t have their opening date yet.
  • We start the trip at national park dock near mongoose junction and northshore deli has great food to go options and opens very early
  • https://www.northshoredelistjohn.com/
  • We have a cooler and water and ice on board and you are welcome to bring your own drinks and snacks.
Everything always depends on wind and ocean, right now we have a big north swell from hurricane teddy so the north is rough but the south is calm as a lake so a great day to snorkel the southern spots and swim in at reef bay which can be rough so don’t think to much about the exact stops, Captain Steve has been doing these charters for many years and will help you choose the best places to go for the day.

unset-cruise-powerboat-charter-stjohn

Sunset Cruise 290$ including captain and fuel

Visit Pizza Pi the pizza boat, enjoy your pizza while watching the sunset or jump in for a snorkel at Chrismas Cove or bring your picnic or food from North Shore Deli or Sam and Jacks to enjoy while cruising into the sunset.

Half day USVI 490$ including captain and fuel

Best of North or South Shore incl. pizza pi the pizza boat and cays north of st. john (snorkeling and sightseeing) or you can hike up Reef Bay.

3/4 day USVI 590$ including captain and fuel

Best of North and South Shore incl. pizza pi the pizza boat and cays north of st. john (snorkeling and sightseeing)  if you want you can also hike up Reef Bay (for waterfall and petroglyphs) easy 20min hike

Full Day USVI 790$ including captain and fuel

All around St. John (North Shore and South Shore Spots) incl. stop at Lime Out which is on the Coral Bay side of island.

reef-bay-hike-petroglyphs-stjohn-usvi

half-day-boat-trip-stjohn-usvi

add (inshore) fishing option to any charter for 100$

Our most popular option is the 3/4 day as you don’t have to clear customs and pay customs fees (like when going to BVI) so you don’t really need a full day unless you want to go to lime out which is a very long way.

On the 3/4 you can do all the key sights on North and South Shore and if you want you can also hike up Reef Bay (for waterfall and petroglyphs) easy 20min hike and stop at Pizza Pi the Pizza Boat.
Fully day going all around the island / visiting lime out is  is always pending weather on a very rough day this is not recommended.

Pizza Pi and Lime Out

If you would like to visit Pizza Pi the Pizza Boat or Lime Out on your charter please check their website and facebook pages for latest opening days, right now Lime Out is set to re-open October 5th.

Alternatively you can grab some snacks for your charter for example from North Shore Deli (across from National Park Dock) or Sam and Jacks at upper level Starfish.

Open for paddleboard deliveries

We have also paddleboard deliveries  but will not be giving lessons or renting snorkel gear for now.

We thank our customers for their continued support during these difficult times and can’t wait to head back to Jost with y’all

Changes due to Covid:

  • Please sanitize your hands upon entering the boat we should have hand sanitizer on board
  • We might have to wear masks when approaching Pizza Pi/lime out it is hard to keep on top of  what their latest requirements are but please bring them just in case.
  • You will NOT be required to wear mask on board but please practice social distancing from captain and do not sit on the seat right next to him there are plenty of other seats on the boat.
  • We are NOT providing snorkel gear we don’t think these are times to share breathing equipment even with careful disinfection a risk remains esp. for the crew cleaning it.
  • You are however welcome to borrow fins.
  • For payment the captain can run the final charge on the card you used for deposit if you would like to use different card please pay online with the PAY NOW link in the booking invoice.

Online Booking: Book your unforgettable day in USVI waters here:

post

Covid-19 Update August 13th: All non-essential businesses closed.

In yesterday’s press conference the governor reverted the USVI back to “stay at home” phase. This is due to a spike in covid-19 cases, mostly on St. Thomas where they recorded 55 new postitives this week in only one day, for a population of 55.000

Effective immediately

  • Hotels, airbnb, guest houses cease accepting new reservations for leisure travel for 30 days

Effective Monday August 17 territory goes back to Stay at Home phase orange

  • 6 AM Monday all non essential businesses closed for at least 2 weeks. “After 2 weeks we will assess number of active cases and make decision”.
  • Churches and schools closed.
  • All beaches closed on weekends at noon
  • Restaurant take out only.
  • Max 10 people in stores or gatherings exceptions large stores on St. Thomas

Effective August 19:

  • Effective August 19 no new check-ins for leisure travel for 30 days.

Based on the governor’s order we are suspending all leisure charters immediately, and all bookings for the next 2 weeks have been fully refunded. We could potentially still do supply runs and fishing but for now we have hauled our 32FS Regulator out and have started an overhaul with sanding down the existing paint and bottom paint. We are expecting a very active hurricane season for the next few weeks anyways so the boat is safer in the boat yard. We have for now blocked all reservations until September 19 depending on how the hurricane season and covid-19 cases go this might be extended.

The BVI’s which were the main destination for our day trips are still closed so business was limited already even during the busy summer. The BVIs are schedule to re-open September 1st but this might be extended or they might open for visitors with covid-19 test but not for day charters we will see.

Many people ask about supporting local businesses on St. John

Here are some ways.

  • Leave a positive review for your last charter. You can review us on tripadvisor here and on facebook here
  • Order a Rockhoppin’ T-Shirt, Tank or hoodie here
  • Book a future charter for a random date and pay either the 150$ deposit or the full amount here. Once your future travel date is confirmed we can move the booking to the actual date. All our charters are fully refundable up to 72 hours before the booked date
post

St. John, USVI Covid-19 Update: Re-opening July 1st, USVI trips only

JULY 9 UPDATE: Big news from today’s press conference : negative Covid-19 test required for all states that have positivity rate of 10% or more (data based on John Hopkins University). Effective July 15th. Test can be up to 5 days old and is required for age 15+. Current list of states: Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Florida, Idaho, Kansas, Mississippi, Nevada, South Carolina, Texas. If no negative test is presented, self quarantine for 14 days or test upon arrival and quarantine until test negative. Antibody test max 4 month old works too. Effective immediately all bars have to close. No alcohol sold after 11pm. Restaurants can continue to serve drinks but no counter service. Beaches close 4pm on weekends and holidays. #stjohn #usvi #stjohnusvi #covid19

For latest official updates, check out https://www.facebook.com/GovernmentHouseUSVI/

For update on St. John and USVI Covid19 case numbers head over to this page: https://www.facebook.com/virginislandsDOH/

The BVI are still closed for day trips until September 1st but we would love to show you a great time in USVI waters on 1/2 day, 3/4 day or full day St. John or a take you for a sunset cruise. The sunsets have been truly amazing recently. On another note the new Zozo’s H20 on Lovango, USVI which had briefly opened before Covid-19 is and remains closed.

  • We will not be providing snorkel gear, we don’t think these are the times to share breathing equipment even with careful desinfection some risk remains
  • We will not be doing shared trips, private charters only

unset-cruise-powerboat-charter-stjohn

Sunset Cruise 290$ including captain and fuel

Visit Pizza Pi the pizza boat, enjoy your pizza while watching the sunset or jump in for a snorkel at Chrismas Cove

Half day USVI 490$ including captain and fuel

Best of North or South Shore incl. pizza pi the pizza boat and cays north of st. john (snorkeling and sightseeing) or you can hike up Reef Bay.

3/4 day USVI 590$ including captain and fuel

best of North and South Shore incl. pizza pi the pizza boat and cays north of st. john (snorkeling and sightseeing)  if you want you can also hike up Reef Bay (for waterfall and petroglyphs) easy 20min hike

Full Day USVI 790$ including captain and fuel

All around St. John incl. stop at Lime Out which is on the Coral Bay side of island

reef-bay-hike-petroglyphs-stjohn-usvi

half-day-boat-trip-stjohn-usvi

add (inshore) fishing option to any charter for 100$

Our most popular option is the 3/4 day as you don’t have to clear customs and pay customs fees (like when going to BVI) so you don’t really need a full day unless you want to go to lime out which is a very long way.

On the 3/4 you can do all the key sights on North and South Shore and if you want you can also hike up Reef Bay (for waterfall and petroglyphs) easy 20min hike and stop at Pizza Pi the Pizza Boat.
Fully day going all around the island / visiting lime out is  is always pending weather on a very rough day this is not recommended.

Pizza Pi and Lime Out

If you would like to visit Pizza Pi the Pizza Boat or Lime Out on your charter please check their website and facebook pages for latest opening days

Alternatively you can grab some snacks for your charter for example from North Shore Deli (across from National Park Dock) or

Open for paddleboard deliveries

We have resumed paddleboard deliveries on June 1st but will not be giving lessons or renting snorkel gear for now. We thank our customers for their continued support during these difficult times and can’t wait to head back to Jost with y’all

Changes due to Covid:

  • Please sanitize your hands upon entering the boat we should have hand sanitizer on board
  • We might have to wear masks when approaching Pizza Pi I will double check with them what their latest requirements are but please bring them just in case.
  • You will NOT be required to wear mask on board but please practice social distancing from captain and do not sit on the seat right next to him there are plenty of other seats on the boat.
  • We are NOT providing snorkel gear we don’t think these are times to share breathing equipment even with careful disinfection a risk remains esp. for the crew cleaning it.
  • You are however welcome to borrow fins.
  • For payment the captain can run the final charge on the card you used for deposit if you would like to use different card please pay online with the PAY NOW link in the booking invoice.

Online Booking: Book your unforgettable day in USVI waters here:

post

T-Shirt Fundraiser

It is quiet here on St. John, with all beaches and trails closed, all non-essential businesses ordered to close and villas and hotels not allowed to take on any new guests. So far only 2 confirmed cased on St. John but quite a few on St. Thomas.

We can still go fishing and caught a very nice Wahoo last weekend

Other than that we are catching up on projects around the house and after avoiding the phone and computer for some time are now catching up with work there too and found the time to design some new t-shirts.

Had to cancel your trip to St. John? Missing the island? Wear a piece of clothing that shows your love for the island at home and support your favorite charter business during these difficult times by ordering one of our new shirts (available until April 30th).

Lots of new styles and colors and we now also have kids tees and kids long sleeves!

We have two new designs with lots of styles to choose from. Unsure which one? The captain’s recommendation is the triblend T-Shirt, it is a very light, super soft fabric that dries very quickly.

t-shirts-rockhoppin-charters2

Classic Rockhoppin’ T-Shirt

features our logo on the front and a map of the virgin islands on back together with a checkbox style list where you can check of the islands you visited. They are available as Women’s Racerback, Premium Long Sleeve, Premium Unisex T-Shirt, Tri-blend shirt (very soft, fast drying fabric) as well Youth Tee and Youth Long Sleeve, available in lots of colors. Check them out here:

https://www.bonfire.com/rockhoppin2020/

Fishing T-Shirt

features our logo on the front and a fishing design on the back, after all our boat is called “Wahoo Wa”. They are available as Women’s Racerback, Premium Long Sleeve, Classic Unisex, Tri-blend (very soft, fast drying fabric), 3/4 Baseball Tee, Women’s slim fit T, V-Neck Unisex, Youth Unisex, Youth Long Sleeve as well Youth Tee and Youth Long Sleeve, available in lots of colors. Check them out here:

https://www.bonfire.com/rockhoppin-fish/

rockhoppin-captain-shirt

Prefer the good old “I’m the captain” design? That is available here:

https://www.bonfire.com/rockhoppincaptain/

post

Coronavirus Update St. John, USVI

Sunday, March 22, 2020 Coronavirus update

wow this has been a whirlwind week. We are doing ok, so far 6 cases in the territory with about 40 results pending.

Most restaurants and bars as well as shops have announced their closure to protect their staff and following the 10 person rule. Pizza Pi, the pizza boat the last remaining food/drink option for charters announced their closure as well. Yesterday evening, the governor released an update via youtube which you can watch here. The key points below:

In line with the governor’s request for all non-essential businesses to seize all in-person business we will not be conducting any charters until further notice. We are available to transport passengers or goods should the need arise.

Guidelines:

  • Social and distancing at all times, 6 feet
  • Stay at home policy: Stay at home as much as possible
  • “Its ok to take a walk, it’s ok to take a drive but please refrain from congregating”
  • No camping for Easter
  • “Do not go to parties, bbq, picnics, enjoy the beach but stay away from people”

Effective Monday 23rd:

  • All bars will be closed
  • Restaurants take out only no inhouse dining
  • Taxi capacity cut down in half
  • Monitoring the ferries – meet with operators Monday

Effective Wednesday 25rd:

  • Stay at home order “not a curfew”
  • Keep as much people off the street as possible
  • No hotel, timeshare, airbnb allowed to accept new guest except government or medical personal
  • International message we want to send: “if you are coming to the Virgin Islands you will not have anywhere to stay for the next 30 days”
  • “Stay at home is not a curfew only PR has curfew. We are not imposing curfew. We are imposing stay at home”. This does not cover essential business: groceries, pet supplies, hardware stores, restaurants, food processing, gas stations, auto supply stores, car dealerships, banks and credit unions, garden stores, laundry services, building supplies are exempt as long as they keep customer rates under 10.
  • Further exempt are plumbers, electricians, exterminators, custodial services, handyman, funeral services, hvac installers and carpenters, anybody who deals with construction. Also exempt: Office supplies, shipping, delivery services, airlines, public transport, professional services, legal, accounting, places that provide shelters,

 

Thursday, March 19, 2020 Coronavirus update

More businesses (e.g. Banana Deck, Dog House Pub, Greengo’s, Pizza Bar in Paradise) have announced their closures and St. John Hardware is limiting hours to give staff time to rest and clean.

NPS Visitor Center and FVINP are closed as are the concessions at Trunk Bay and the guided Reef Bay Trail Hike.

Pizza Pi, the pizza boat announced closure as of tomorrow.

Cliff Notes from Governor’s Press Conference at 1pm today: 

3 confirmed cases in usvi, 21 tests pending

contact tracing underway

as of Saturday 6am max 10 people also for bars & restaurants excempt are large stores like home depot plaza extra etc that can ensure spacing

plaza extra special 7-10am shopping time for seniors

funerals are exempt

no camping on public beaches

effective monday government services limited to essential services

60 day extension on all license renewals (car, drivers license, business license)

there are still 1500 visitors in territory and no intention of closing airport

still 1500 visitors are in territory no requests to close airports at this time

 

TUESDAY, March 17, 2020 Coronavirus update

2nd confirmed case in the territory, while the first was St. Croix, the second is said to be in the St. Thomas/St. John district. 17 test are still pending. Again, the actual rate is probably much higher. Governor has closed schools starting tomorrow, cancelled St. Thomas carvinal and advised to only use the St. John – St. Thomas ferry for essential travel.

People were in and out of Pricesmart St. Thomas within 20minutes today and desinfecting products were stocked.

St. Thomas: Bolongo Bay Resort and Wyndham are closing until further notice.
St. John: Lime Out and Lime in were the first to announce their closure this morning, Lovango Rum Bar cancelled their grand opening, a little later in the day Soggy Dollar Bar, BVI as well as Skinny Legs and Extra Virgin announced their closure too
BVI: the BVI are closing their boarders to anyone but local residents, belongers and work permit holders on Thursday, March 19th for at least a month. No more BVI charters, sorry. Soggy Dollar Bar is closing as well.

More information on local closures here:

White house recommends avoiding crowds of more than 10 people and avoiding non-essential travel. It seems to be the concensus that staying home is the right thing to do. We had 5 cancellations in the last 24 hours.

As of today most St. John Bars and Restaurants are still open but many are promoting the take out option. People can still go to the beach, a curfew like in Puerto Rico is a possibility but our governor does not seem to be in the “err on the side of caution” camp, but maybe that is the way to achieve compliance, if he had cancelled carnival too early there would have been outrage.

SUNDAY, March 15, 2020

Good morning from sunny St. John, here is the latest update in light of the Corona Virus. We are not a news outlet and we cannot constantly update this article with new developments, this is a status report from Sunday, March 15th.

As of this morning,  it is still pretty much business as usual on St. John, the grocery stores are stocked (including toilet paper – both photos taken this morning) with no crazy lines and the bars and restaurants are open. Some crowded scenes at Cost U Less St. Thomas have been reported yesterday however. If you are coming over on the car barge, we recommend skipping the STT grocery stop to avoid the craziness and potential exposure to virus as well.

Coronavirus in the USVI

so far there is one confirmed case in the territory that is rumored to be on St. Croix. Reports about a death on CNN are false. It is of course likely that the actual number of cases is much higher, as there is no free health care or health insurance, people usually try to battle it out at home and locals are very good at beating illness with rest and natural remedies. So there is a chance that unknowingly some herd immunity has been built especially on St. Thomas which has been exposed to all the cruise ship travel. There is hope heat and the sun and clean air may potentially inhibit a rapid spread in the territory just like flu season is typical in the winter months. UV-light is a natural disinfectant and “open air treatment” was an acknowledged form of medical treatment for influenza during the 1918 Influenza Pandemic before antibiotics were available. Read all about it here

Of course by no means are we safe from the Virus here and a potential outbreak will be catastrophic with the limited health care facilities available. There are 120 hospital beds on St. Thomas and 8 in the ICU for 50.000+ inhabitants and maybe 100.000 visitors per month.

Puerto Rico

The governor of Puerto Rico (which has 4 confirmed and 17 suspected cases) has just ordered a curfew from 9pm to 5am until March 30th. There is a chance this will happen here too as a preventive measure to stop the spread of the virus. Hopefully people will still be allowed to go to beaches. Source:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2020/03/15/coronavirus-latest-news/#link-BBGT3QI5HJFS7IDCOPNFCGR6II

Should I cancel my trip to St. John, USVI in light of the Corona Virus?

This is a difficult question and here is my personal opinion. Of course, everybody has to evaluate the pros and cons based on their own circumstances.

As a local business owner who makes 100% of income from tourism and who has not left the island since the hurricanes I wish the ports and airports would be closed to spare our little island the exposure to this virus and to spare the visitors to make this hard decision. I appreciate visitors especially from high risk states or with previous travel or exposure to at risk regions / persons cancelling their trip to spare St. John but realistically the spot might be taken by last minute opportunists (yeah no school, cheap flights…). so those that have not booked yet, please think twice! Even healthy people can unknowingly transmit the virus. Personally I think the economic loss from less tourism is not as bad as the potentially catastrophic effect of a major outbreak here.

Those that have booked and have no choice of rescheduling, the most responsible thing is to self-quarantine at home for 2 weeks before travel and take every possible precaution to not get infected on the way over…..

We will issue a full refund if you decide to cancel but also appreciate customers changing to a random date in the future to ease the financial burden.

People with pre-existing medical conditions (heart/lung disease, auto-immune disease etc.) that might require hospitalization in case of infection, please avoid travel here, the health care is difficult without an outbreak already. Insurance that will air-lift you to the mainland in case of an emergency is always a good idea when travelling here no matter how young and healthy you are.

Being stuck on this island due to halt in air travel or airlines cancelling flights because they are not full/profitable or their crews are sick is also a possibility, maybe not a bad thing unless your presence is required at home or you need medical attention. Getting off island post hurricane was very very difficult and that was with the mainland fully functioning.

Another risk is that curfews might be issued so you would not be allowed to leave villa/hotel at night like it is currently in Puerto Rico, hopefully they will still allow beach visits during day.

This is a developing topic, so always check with CDC website for latest travel advisories.

Questions to help you come to a decision.

  1. Is there any chance I could be bringing the virus to the USVI
  2. Do I have insurance / financial resources to be airlifted to mainland in case of medical emergency (which can be completely unrelated to Covid-19) – healthcare here is fragile without a pandemic
  3. Do I have the flexibility / financial resources / stamina to stay on the island longer than planned (in case air travel is halted, airlines cancel flights or go bankrupt) ?

Can I still go on a private charter with Rockhoppin?

We are conducting business as usual for now but can only do USVI Trips as the BVI are closing their borders. We are taking extra pre-cautions to disinfect touch surfaces of the boat after each charter and we will no longer be providing snorkel gear. Even with careful disinfection there is a risk – too little is know how long the virus can survive on surfaces, the moist boxes of the boat could harbor it and staff handling/cleaning the gear would be at risk. We are also suspending snorkel gear rental with paddleboards at SUP-Stjohn.com, we don’t think these are times to share breathing equipment, if you would like to snorkel we recommend bringing / purchasing your own equipment for example at Low Key, Chelsea Drug Store or Kmart St. Thomas.

If you have travelled to at risk countries, are running a fever, have a dry cough or have been in contact with people under observation we ask you to do the right thing and cancel your charter to not contribute to the spread of the virus, your deposit will be refunded but you can also help our small business by just changing to a random date in the future.

Please take all the recommended hygiene measures that have been widely recommended, frequent hand washing/use of hand sanitizer, sneeze into tissue, no hand shakes, no shared cups etc.

BVI Trips and the Coronavirus

As of today USVI March 15th boats can still enter the BVI however only at Tortola Westend (no more check-in on Jost). Visitors have to fill out the health questionnaire below and depending on answers may be declined entry or asked to quarantine. We also expect longer wait times at customs. Of course you can change your destination to the 3/4 St. John or half day or full day and stay local at no costs. For food options we have pizza pi, the pizza boat  and the new Zozo’s H20 on Lovango. Lime Out has closed in light of the virus

http://www.rockhoppin.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/PERSONAL-HEALTH-DECLARATION-FORM1.pdf-·-version-1.pdf

On Thursday, March 19th the BVI are closing their borders for at least a month, so no more BVI charters, sorry

Paddleboard Rental

you can cancel or reschedule your paddleboard rental free of charge the deposit will be refunded upon request but we ask you to consider letting it keep us for a future rental to ease the financial burden on our small business.

snorkeling-buck-island-sea-turtle

How can we help St. John?

Some people might decide to still visit to support their favorite island to support local businesses. Other ways to help are buying gift certificates at any shop or restaurant or to order gifts/souvenirs online. You can book a charter for a random day in the future www.rockhoppin.com/bookme (you can reschedule free or charge once you know your new travel dates) or pay the 100$ deposit for a future paddleboard rentat at sup-stjohn.com here: www.sup-stjohn.com/pay/

You were happy with your charter or paddleboard rental with us? Head over to tripadvisor and leave a nice review here!

To end on a positive note

St. John is resilient, we survided Irma and Maria and we will survive this. Maybe something good will come out of it, maybe in return our planet gets a break from C02 emission and pollution so maybe we slow climate change and get a hurricane season that is less devastating. Look at the before and after photo from China: https://www.npr.org/sections/goatsandsoda/2020/03/04/811019032/why-chinas-air-has-been-cleaner-during-the-coronavirus-outbreak?fbclid=IwAR3lOKKbYwAnVUDN_dJ1XNbP7OTIXB003pOKhOy8q2UQlqnYl9PASz_iOp0