Skip to content


4 Best Things to Do in the British Virgin Islands

August 3, 2023 | The Aerial, BVI

There are plenty of ways to experience the best of island life in the British Virgin Islands. You can try water sports off Caribbean beaches, sailing tours on crystal clear waters, and day trips hiking through lush Caribbean rainforests. Then there’s the delicious array of fresh Caribbean food!

The British Virgin Islands offer something for everyone—from adventurers to honeymooners. If you’re coming to The Aerial, BVI for a summit, wellness stay, or private event, you’ll find that there’s lots to do and plenty of breathtaking places to explore on these beautiful islands. 

Tropical Beaches at Aerial BVI

1. Tropical Beaches 

The British Virgin Islands are known for their pristine beaches. Many seasoned tourists say one of the best things to do in the British Virgin Islands is to visit the beaches and explore the ocean. You can swim through turquoise waters, watch sea turtles, or simply relax at a laid-back beach bar. Whichever coastal activities you prefer, the beaches of the BVI island chain do not disappoint. 

The following are some of the best beaches in the British Virgin Islands:

White Bay Beach

White Bay Beach is a stunning crescent-shaped beach located on the island of Jost Van Dyke. The island is known for its laid-back atmosphere, clear waters, and silky soft sand. Tourists can swim, snorkel, and sunbathe, and can enjoy a delicious meal at one of the many popular restaurants that overlook the Caribbean Sea. For a bit of fun in the sun, check out the Soggy Dollar Beach Bar and try its signature rum drink while basking in the sight of the open sea.

Smuggler’s Cove

Smuggler’s Cove is a secluded and peaceful beach located on the western end of Tortola. Visitors will need to travel down a dirt road to reach the shoreline and will be met with lush greenery and a slice of tropical paradise. Tourists call Smuggler’s Cove one of the best-kept secrets of the BVI. It is the perfect beach for escaping the crowds and enjoying island life to the fullest.

Buck Island Beaches

Buck Island, where our all-inclusive health and wellness resort is located, is a private island that boasts unparalleled natural beauty. It is a great place to relax and embark on an unforgettable journey. At the resort, we offer travelers the chance to experience tranquility and life transformation with mental wellness retreats that include beach, water, and land activities and wellness workshops. We also offer several eco-tourism activities that are perfect if you’re looking for an eco-minded Caribbean experience.

Cane Garden Bay Beach 

Cane Garden Bay Beach in Tortola is marked by majestic blue-green waters, laid-back beach bars, and a lively boating community. It’s also home to several restaurants where you can sip on refreshing cocktails (or mocktails) and eat delicious island food while taking in the stunning views. If you’re looking for spectacular island vibes, culture, and cuisine, Cane Garden Bay Beach is a must-visit destination.

Cow Wreck Beach

It may have a funny name, but this beach is extremely beautiful. Located on Anegada, Cow Wreck Beach is considered one of the most stunning stretches of white sand beach in the British Virgin Islands. At Cow Wreck Beach, you can enjoy swimming or snorkeling followed by ice-cold drinks, delicious lobster rolls, and conch fritters served at the Cow Wreck Beach Bar and Grill. This beach is an excellent place to relax and take in island views.

Virgin Gorda Baths

The Virgin Gorda Baths are a popular tourist destination known for secret rock pools, colorful coves, and enormous gray granite boulders that protrude from the Caribbean Sea. The Virgin Gorda Baths are ideal for wading, swimming, and relaxing.

Maritime Activities at Aerial BVI

2. Maritime Activities

You can’t say you’ve experienced the British Virgin Islands until you get out on the sparkling blue waters that surround them. From embarking on a sailing adventure to stopping at secluded coves to snorkel or deep-dive, the best maritime activities are full of surprises for the adventurous traveler. 

These are a few must-experience maritime activities in the BVI archipelago: 

Sail Around The Islands

Hire a private boat or join a sailing tour to explore the islands and islets that make up the British Virgin Islands chain. The British Virgin Islands comprise around sixty islands that you can explore by boat. If you book a retreat or Deep Wellness Stay at The Aerial, BVI, you will discover some of the bluest waters in the world with sailing and other watersports activities including kayaking, snorkeling, paddle boarding, and seabobbing.


Snorkeling is a thrilling eco-minded activity that brings you face-to-face with the vibrant marine life that lives in the vast waters surrounding the British Virgin Islands. You can swim alongside tropical fish and discover colorful coral reefs at popular snorkeling spots such as Diamond Reef, The Indians, and the Wreck of RMS Rhone. 

Private snorkeling tours offer trips to lesser-known and more secluded snorkeling spots. They are a great option for a more personalized and unique experience. If you’re a consummate diver, you might also like to check out the shipwreck in the British Virgin Islands National Heritage Site between Salt Island and Dead Chest Island.


One of the best ways to discover the beautiful coastline and mangrove forests of the British Virgin Islands is by kayaking. With placid seas and warm waters, the British Virgin Islands are a perfect place to kayak. 

These days, some kayaking tour companies in the BVI use kayaks made from sustainable materials. Eco-minded travelers will enjoy exploring the ecosystems of the British Virgin Islands while being guided on how to respect and avoid disturbing the local marine life.

Island Birdwatching

The British Virgin Islands has robust natural ecosystems and is home to various nature reserves and national parks. This makes the BVI a fantastic place to birdwatch and observe migratory bird species. 

More than 210 species of birds have been seen in the British Virgin Islands. You can witness neotropical migrants like warblers and shorebirds during the dry season and water birds like egrets, herons, and pelicans regularly. The best time to go bird watching in the British Virgin Islands is when the weather is mild between November and April. 

Experience Local Culture at Aerial BVI

3. Experience Local Culture 

Exploring the rich history of the area is highly enjoyable, particularly for those who are interested in history. If you’d like to dive deep into island history, these are some of the best history destinations in the British Virgin Islands:

Copper Mine Ruins

History buffs can catch a glimpse into the island’s mining past by visiting Copper Mine on Virgin Gorda, which dates back to the 19th century. A somewhat eerie but fascinating landmark, this historical site features the remains of smelting furnaces, shafts, and antique mining equipment. 

Treasure Island

Norman Island, also known as Treasure Island, is a privately owned island in the British Virgin Islands that is renowned for its rich history and legendary tales of pirates and hidden treasure. You can explore the secluded beaches and see vibrant marine life with snorkeling and diving. For curious travelers, this is a great place to sail back in time and uncover hidden secrets.

Explore Sage Mountain National Park

Located in Tortola and covering 92 acres, Sage Mountain National Park is the largest park in the British Virgin Islands. It also represents the start of conservation efforts as the property was purchased from local island farmers and put under the protection of the British Virgin Islands government. With spectacular views at the highest point (around 1700 feet), visiting Sage Mountain National Park is perfect for outdoor and history enthusiasts looking to witness the island’s distinct flora and fauna. 

Callwood Rum Distillery 

Great for history gurus and rum enthusiasts alike, the Callwood Rum Distillery on Tortola is a historic site that began producing rum over 200 years ago and continues to run its operations today. The distillery is located in Cane Garden Bay and still uses copper pots to produce small batches of rum. Once produced, the rum is aged in oak barrels. 

You can learn about the rum-making process by taking a tour of the facilities. The best part? During the tour, you will be offered a sampling of different rum varieties. Needless to say, you will want to show up to the tour with a full belly of food to avoid getting a sour stomach. 

4. Enjoy Island Cuisine

Johnny cakes, conch fritters, and lobster rolls are just a few of the mouthwatering island dishes you can enjoy in the British Virgin Islands. The British Virgin Islands offer a range of traditional dishes that will satisfy the taste buds of foodies from around the world. 

The following are some of the best local dishes in the British Virgin Islands:

Fish and Fungi 

Fish and fungi is the British Virgin Islands’ territorial dish and a staple of BVI culture and cuisine. The fish is usually caught fresh and is served either fried or grilled. Fungi is an okra and cornmeal-based side that has been boiled and formed into small buttery cakes. Fish and fungi is often seasoned with a creole-style seasoning, which is a blend of local herbs and spices. Flavorful, filling, and crispy, fish and fungi is a must-try dish. 

Johnny Cakes

Deliciously fried until golden brown, Johnny cakes are made from cornmeal, sugar, and flour, and are often served with butter or local jams. They can also be dipped in stews, soups, or sauces. They are widely popular for breakfast or snacks and provide a delectable local culinary experience for both locals and visitors.

Conch Fritters

Conch fritters are a popular local snack made from sea snail meat mixed with flour, eggs, and spices and deep-fried until golden brown. They are typically served with a dipping sauce and are offered at almost every beachside bar and restaurant that offers local cuisine. 

Island-to-Table Dishes 

You can find fresh island-to-table dishes at several eateries and resorts throughout the islands. At The Aerial, BVI, we grow a lot of our own produce and source the rest of our ingredients either locally or from sustainable sources.

While you’re in the BVI, you can also visit the local markets and grocery stores where you will find a variety of fresh fruits, vegetables, and seafood. The Sunny Caribbee Spice Shop & Art Gallery in Road Town is a great place to get spices, jams, and sauces while checking out Caribbean art.

There’s Lots to Do in the BVI!

The British Virgin Islands offers a complete Caribbean experience with white sand beaches, lush rainforests, delicious cuisine, and a rich history set in a tranquil and laid-back atmosphere. Most of the top things to do in the BVI are eco-friendly and help to support local communities.

Whether you dream of snorkeling through the coral reefs and swimming with sea turtles or simply want to take in stunning ocean views while sunbathing, this tropical paradise offers something for everyone looking for an unforgettable Caribbean vacation.