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Exploring St. Thomas

NOTE: This Trip Occurred in May of 2021


Day 1

After arriving on our United flight from Newark, we were met at the airport by Mrs. ATX Jetsetter’s parents and brother who had spent the first half of the week on St. John. We had some time to kill before heading to our condo on the east end so we decided to travel into Charlotte Amalie. The city is located on the harbor and is usually jam packed with tourists from cruise ships, though these were non-existent during our trip due to Covid restrictions.

Charlotte Amalie Waterfront St. Thomas
Charlotte Amalie Waterfront

All of the shops were brightly colored and welcoming but clearly catered to the tourists from the boats, with an assortment of jewelry stores and a couple of bars making up the majority of the waterfront.

It was hot and muggy outside due to the moisture that was burning off from that morning’s rain, so we popped into one of the bars and grabbed a frozen drink while we walked around.

From Charlotte Amalie, we hopped back in the car and headed across the island to Hull Bay Beach. It was interesting to see the weather change as we went from one side to the other. The weather transitioned from a few clouds to completely overcast skies. We still were able to enjoy some time relaxing on the beach and virtually had the place to ourselves. The exception being a couple of fishermen going to/coming from their boats.

When we were finished at the beach, we hopped in the car and drove to the east side of the island and our home for the weekend on Cowpet Bay near Red Hook.

Cowpet Bay West Condominiums St. Thomas, USVI
Cowpet Bay West Condominiums

After unpacking, we walked down to check out the beach. It was a little choked with seaweed but I was hopeful that it was just a product of the earlier storm.

We walked next door to the nearby Club Wyndham resort and the Sangria’s Beachside Bistro for an afternoon libation.

Sangria's Beachside Bistro Club Wyndham St. Thomas, USVI
Sangria's Beachside Bistro

The crazy overnight and travel day was starting to catch up to us so we made a light dinner at the condo and called it a night early.


Day 2

Fully rested from the day before, and with great weather outside, we started our day with coffee on the balcony. The grounds crew had done a great job of clearing away most of the seaweed and, though it continued to come ashore, they kept it up throughout our stay.

Cowpet Bay West Condominiums Beach View St. Thomas, USVI
Cowpet Bay West Condominiums Beach View

The first stop on our itinerary today was Sapphire Beach, located a short drive from our condo on the grounds of the Sapphire Beach Condominium Resort. There was no fee to access the beach and the resort had a bar setup where we ordered cocktails. We spent a decent amount of the day here swimming and laying on the beach.

Back at the condo, we took a pre-dinner stroll on the beach before dinner. Exhausted from a long day of doing nothing, we decided to let someone else cook and headed to the Caribbean Fish Market located on the resort grounds.

Caribbean Fish Market Restaurant at Club Wyndham St. Thomas, USVI
Caribbean Fish Market Restaurant at Club Wyndham

We were shown to our table immediately upon entry and the menu read as follows.

To start, we had an order of the conch fritters and an order of crab cakes.

Caribbean Fish Market Restaurant at Club Wyndham conch fritters and crab cakes St. Thomas, USVI
Fresh, delicious conch fritters and crab cakes

For my main, I decided to go off the menu and had the seared sea scallops which was one of the nightly specials. Scallops are one of my favorite foods and there’s nothing better than a fresh scallop and the sound of the sea.

Caribbean Fish Market Restaurant at Club Wyndham sea scallop St. Thomas, USVI
A delicious scallop

After dinner, we headed back to the condo where I proceeded to get absolutely crushed in a game of cards, much to the enjoyment of my wife and her family.


Day 3

For our last full day on the island we all approached our morning differently. Mrs. ATX Jetsetter and her brother decided to do a kayaking/snorkeling tour through the mangroves that started early in the morning. Her parents wanted to go into town to explore the markets and I wanted to sleep in and watch golf. I spent a relaxing morning sipping coffee and watching the PGA Championship before heading over to the tour dock to meet them.

While waiting for them to return, I hung out on the dock and was shocked at how many, half-sunken boats there were strewn around. Some of them didn’t even look to be in bad shape.

Abandoned boats in the mangroves St. Thomas, USVI
Abandoned boats in the mangroves

Once they returned we were all hungry and headed to a nearby taco stand, Taco Chelles, for lunch.

The restaurant had a large and diverse taco and drink selection which had something for everybody. The full menu is below.

We started with some water, Dos XX dressed, and the Three Amigos which had salsa, queso and green chili ranch dips served with chips.

Taco Chelles Dip Trio St. Thomas, USVI
Taco Chelles Dip Trio

As for the tacos, we ordered a little bit of everything and left lunch completely stuffed.

Back at the condo we made some fresh mango daiquiris with some of the fruit from the market and headed down to the beach. We also ran across one of the many iguanas that were roaming around the property.

Dinner that night also came from the market in the form of some fresh fish that we pan grilled along with some corn and a local plantain type starch.

Fresh Fish dinner St. Thomas, USVI
Fresh dinner from the local market

With the next day being a travel day we spent the night packing and tidying up the condo before calling it a night.


Day 4

Since our flights weren’t until the afternoon, we woke up and headed down to the beach for a morning swim. Though, unlike the rest of our trip, the sky was overcast and rain was definitely on the way. After our swim, we headed up to the condo for a quick rinse and finalized our packing.

Cowpet Bay West Condominiums Beach St. Thomas, USVI
Overcast skies for our day of departure

We left the condo just before 10:00a and headed towards Charlotte Amalie. The skies continued to darken and rain had started to fall by the time we got into town. We parked the car in a parking lot near the water where a bunch of restaurants are located and went to grab lunch. One thing we didn’t realize was that the majority of the restaurants are closed on Sunday. After running around in the rain for a bit we came across The Tap & Still. With the tagline “Burgers, Booze, Beer”, I was sold. We grabbed a table and ordered a round of beers and burgers.

Full from lunch, we drove through town and gassed up the rental car near the airport. With the airport being notorious for long check-in lines we all got dropped off curbside with the luggage while Mrs. ATX Jetsetter’s father returned the rental car.


Summary

Our trip to St. Thomas was exactly what we were looking for. Since we wanted to spend time with family and avoid large crowds due to Covid, the east side of the island was the perfect location. If we had gone by ourselves, we likely would have stayed closer to Charlotte Amalie (and visited the BVIs as well) but we can save that for another trip. Thanks for exploring St. Thomas with us!


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