The paradisal island of St. Croix has what to offer to beginners and experienced snorkelers.
Substantially all beaches in St. Croix offer wonderful snorkeling conditions. Water temperature almost never goes below +26C. The barrier reef protects ¾ of St. Croix Island, hence, the sea is usually serene with unmatched visibility.
St. Croix Snorkeling
Jack’s & Isaac’s Bay Beaches
Both Jack’s & Isaac’s Bay Beaches are located at the very East of St. Croix Island and are a great option for those seeking some secluded spot. The two beaches are accessible by food only, so be ready to about 20 minutes hike. The beaches offer magnificent and unspoiled scenery, powdery soft white sand and calm turquoise waters. Jack’s & Isaac’s Bay Beaches are excellent for snorkeling. Coral reefs in the two bays are habitat to over 400 Caribbean fish species while the shoreline has the highest nesting population of hawksbill and green turtles. Still Isaac’s Bay Beach is more popular thanks to fewer rocks and seaweed along with deeper water.
No amenities are available on either beach, so bring everything that you need for your rest with you. To get to the beaches take Route #82 towards Point Udall, before reaching the Millennium Monument on the right-hand side will be a little parking lot with a signboard marking the trail to Jack’s & Isaac’s Bay Beaches.
Tamarind Reef Beach
Another stunning St. Croix snorkeling site is Tamarind Reef Beach which is placed on the North-East coastline 3 miles of downtown Christiansted. A wide variety of pelagic life may be found just a step from the shore. This is the correct place to meet hawksbill turtles, eagle rays, and Caribbean spiny lobsters. Tamarind Reef has a decent number of hard, soft corals, and sea fans. Another plus is a lovely beach area with all the necessary amenities.
Snorkeling St. Croix may be continued at Green Cay which is just a bit west of Tamarind Reef Beach. This amazing tiny islet is accessible by a boat, paddle board or kayak from Green Cay Marina. Green Cay (especially the East side) has great healthy corals and a plethora of marine life. Except bright tropical reef fish you may encounter some stingrays and spotted eagle rays. This 14 acres islet is National Wildlife Refuge protecting St. Croix Ground Lizard, brown pelicans, and other wildlife. The islet has no amenities.
While snorkeling St. Croix don’t miss the chance to explore the iconic Frederiksted Pier. It stands on St. Croix West End in the center of Frederiksted town. The waters around the pier pilings teem with Caribbean colorful fish, squid, octopus, seahorse, and other amazing marine creatures. The site is famed to be among the top world micro-dive spots. Frederiksted Pier is the only place on St. Croix deep enough for cruise ships to dock. When a cruise ship is in the port the pier is closed to the public. In average, 1-2 cruise ships per week visit St. Croix during a high winter season.
St. Croix Weather
St. Croix Island has a tropical wet & dry savanna climate. During the year, the temperature usually varies from +23C to +31C with a little difference between summer and winter. The warmest period is from June until October with the average temperature +28,5C. The freshest time is from December until March with the average temperature +25,5C. Hurricane season at St. Croix lasts from July to November, check the forecast before your trip. The best time for St. Croix snorkeling is April – June. This period offers mild weather and little rainfall.
St. Croix Island can be reached via Henry E Rohlsen Airport located 6 miles to the South-West from downtown Christiansted.