Now the home to a rich yachting crowd rather than a hangout for pirates, the Virgin Islands are both a Crown Colony of the United Kingdom and an unincorporated territory of the USA but have a calypso and reggae rhythm that marks them out as defiantly Caribbean.
More commercial than their British equivalent, the US Virgin Islands are popular with American tourists who don't require a passport to visit, arriving in the commercial centre of St Thomas.
Escape the hub though and travel to St John, which is ideal for snorkelling and hiking, with excellent eco-credentials and the Virgin Islands National Park to play in. St Croix also has great diving along with a wealth of history from sugar plantations to colonial architecture.
At a glance
US Virgin Islands articles
The Caribbean is synonymous with beach holidays and there are exceptional examples of pure white sand and crystal clear waters throughout the region, meaning that wherever you touch down, you'll be able to find space on which to kick off your shoes and throw down your towel.
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