Swim with horses and ride into the rainforest with Cruzan Cowgirls. This small, family-owned outfitter offers a variety of customizable horseback riding tours. Ride along the white-sand beaches and deep into the rainforest while your family learns about island history from your expert guide. When it’s time to cool off, you and your new horse friends will all enjoy a dip in the cool waters of the Caribbean Sea.

Constructed in the late-18th century, Fort Christiansvaern served as a vital defense against pirates. Explore the courtyard, where cannons still stand guard, and venture inside to discover the fort’s prison cells and a small museum. Fort Christiansvaern offers a Junior Ranger program for children aged 5 through 13. During your visit, the kids can complete a workbook filled with activities related to the fort’s history and share their answers with a park ranger. Upon completion, they’ll receive an official Junior Ranger patch and certificate. 

Embark on an extraordinary adventure as you glide across the bioluminescent Salt River Bay National Historical Park and Ecological Preserve at night in a single or double glass-bottom kayak on a guided family excursion. The water’s movement sets aglow the bay’s bioluminescent organisms, creating a magical underwater spectacle. Sea Thru Kayaks VI offers guided tours of the bay for families with kids aged 8 and older. 

Rainbow Beach is popular among local families for its clear, calm swimming waters. Rent snorkel gear, stand-up paddleboards, kayaks or jet skis from the on-site West End Water Sports and explore the surrounding water world. Dig into fresh fish tacos, burgers, ice cream and other kid-friendly fare at the popular beach cafe, Rhythms at Rainbow Beach.


There’s so much to see and do at the scenic, 5,500-acre Virgin Islands National Park, from snorkeling to swimming and hiking. Stop in at the Cruz Bay Visitor Center, where rotating exhibits showcase the diverse flora, fauna, and unique history and culture of the U.S. Virgin Islands. For families with younger kids, remember to pick up a Junior Ranger workbook. When your child completes the workbook’s educational and fun activities, they can return it to an on-site park ranger to receive an official certificate and badge. 

For a deeper understanding of the oppression, resistance and culture of the people who once lived on St. John, visit the 18th-century Annaberg Sugar Plantation. Explore the ruins of the former enslaved peoples’ quarters, sugar factory and windmill. Stop at the Visitor Center to pick up your Junior Ranger workbook, which includes activities highlighting the plantation’s history. Kids who complete and return the workbook to an on-site park ranger will receive a Junior Ranger program certificate and badge.

Located within Virgin Islands National Park is Trunk Bay Beach, considered to be one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Families can explore a 225-yard-long underwater snorkeling trail where they’ll encounter fascinating marine creatures. Amenities such as a snack shack, restrooms, showers and snorkel gear rentals are available on-site, and lifeguards are on duty during daytime hours.

At Cinnamon Bay Beach & Campground, you don’t just camp, you glamp! Families can spend the night under the stars in deluxe eco-tents, immersing themselves in the great outdoors while still enjoying complete comfort. Snorkel gear, paddleboards, kayaks and beach chairs are all available for rent right at the campground. Dive into the crystal-clear waters and explore Cinnamon Bay’s bustling marine life, then explore the area on a guided hike.


At Coral World Ocean Park, get up-close and personal with sea lions, sharks, stingrays and dolphins. Kids aged 8 and above can also experience an underwater adventure by signing up for a SNUBA expedition. With SNUBA, you breathe through a regulator attached to a long hose connected to a floating raft with dive cylinders, allowing kids to explore underwater without bulky gear.

At the two-story Pirates Treasure Museum, kids can helm a (virtual) pirate ship and steer it out of the path of a hurricane. Fun hands-on exhibits showcase the fascinating science of submarines and delve into the authentic treasures discovered in the waters surrounding the U.S. Virgin Islands. Kids can even manipulate a robotic submarine arm and try to pick up golden coins from a pretend seabed.

Zip through the rainforest at speeds of up to 30 miles per hour with Tree Limin’ Extreme Zipline. Six adrenaline-pumping ziplines, connected to eight treetop platforms, whisk thrill seekers through the treetops. Kids aged 5–7 can go tandem zipping with an adult 18 years or older. 

The Virgin Islands Children’s Museum offers a delightful array of interactive, hands-on exhibits designed for toddlers through elementary school-aged children. Little ones can explore a pretend mango farm and “harvest” fruit from wooden trees or embark on imaginative adventures aboard a play pirate ship. 

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