ST. CROIX

As the largest of the three main islands, St. Croix has more than its share of one-of-a-kind experiences. But a visit to Estate Whim Museum and its surrounding 12 acres should top the must-see list of any visitor looking to dig deeper into the rich history of this beautiful island.

Located along Centerline Road on the west end of the island, Estate Whim is a former sugar plantation that features a colonial-era Great House, laborers’ quarters and a mill factory. See the fascinating artifacts displayed in the permanent My Granny House exhibit, along with rotating cultural exhibits in the North and South Exhibit Halls. The Living Museum provides visitors a closer look at Crucian culture with lively presentations by St. Croix’s tradition bearers, who demonstrate Crucian customs ranging from conch shell blowing to music, dance and cooking.

Take your journey even further with a stop at the Research Library & Archives, where you can do genealogical and historical research, plus purchase photos from their collection.

Is watching pigs drink beer (nonalcoholic) on your bucket list? It should be! At Domino Club St. Croix, Kevin Bacon and Hamilton Hammy are just two of the huge pigs (a mix of potbelly and wild boar) happy to make your dreams come true. Located in the heart of the rainforest, Domino Club — dubbed Jungle Bar for reasons that will become apparent on your drive there — features a laid-back setting decorated with various license plates and bamboo accents around the outdoor bar.

After you’ve taken a shot of their housemade Mama Wanna (local rum aged with herbs, spices and honey) and sampled their legendary roti, head around back for the main show. Standing on their hind legs, the pigs happily crunch that can of NA beer you bought as they chug it all down. Pro tip: Watch out for spraying suds.

ST. JOHN

We’re convinced that if poet Ralph Waldo Emerson had ever been to Salomon/Honeymoon Bay, he never would have said, “It’s not the destination, it’s the journey.” Sure, the journey to get there is cool, as it’s only accessible via a short hike — walk from the Virgin Islands National Park sign off North Shore Road or take the slightly longer, but less steep, trail from the Caneel Bay parking lot — or by boat. But once you do arrive, you’re rewarded with two stunning white-sand, palm tree-studded beaches framed by crystal-clear waters that are home to a variety of coral and colorful fish and marine species. Honeymoon Bay is one of the island’s best spots for shallow snorkeling. Once only known to locals, this secret spot is just too good not to share.

Located on St. John’s North Shore (just a 10-minute car ride from Cruz Bay), you’ll find one of the island’s most peaceful sites: Peace Hill Windmill. Boasting spectacular views of the aqua blue ocean and the ruins of a former sugar mill, even the hike to get there is peaceful, as it’s just a short, easy walk from the parking lot.

Peace Hill Windmill was purchased by a couple in 1939 and used as their vacation getaway. They later donated a large parcel of their land to the National Park Service, with the stipulation that it remain a place where people can find inner peace. Visit on Sundays, when free Peace Hill Community Meditation gatherings are held between 5:45 p.m. – 7 p.m., and the soul-stirring sunset views are especially dramatic.

ST. THOMAS

Frenchtown, located in the quaint Charlotte Amalie district, lives up to its name. In this charming fishing village, known for its equally charming restaurants and galleries, many residents can trace their roots to family members who emigrated from neighboring St. Barthelemy (St. Barths) in the mid-19th century. Perhaps the best reminder of those who traveled here looking for better opportunities can be found in The French Heritage Museum.

Located within two small houses that are indicative of the traditional architecture once common in the area, The French Heritage Museum aims to preserve the history of the Frenchtown people and promote their culture. Explore the century-old artifacts, ranging from mahogany furniture and traditional handmade straw hats to musical instruments and photos that tell the stories of the French-Caribbean people.

A combination artists’ enclave and community center, Tillett Gardens is a St. Thomas treasure. Originally an old Danish farm, this hidden gem located on the east end of the island was transformed into a cozy hub for local businesses, theater lovers and artists in the late 1950s, and is still going strong today. Funky and chill, Tillett Gardens might feature live music one day and a theater performance the next. You’ll also find a selection of unique artisan-made gifts (such as handcrafted, scented soy candles), tasty snacks and vegan sweets.

Discover even more fun things to do in USVI.

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