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Though recovery from the 2017 hurricanes in the Caribbean has taken some time, life is pretty much back to normal throughout the US Virgin Islands (USVI), thanks to efforts by the government and local business owners alike. And now is a great time to visit, due to deep discounting and reliably beautiful weather. Here are 10 other reasons you should visit USVI this winter.

 

RELATED: 10 incredible overwater bungalows in the Caribbean

No passport required

The USVI make for a great tropical getaway for US travelers, since no passport is required to visit. The islands are an unincorporated and organized territory of the United States, which means your state ID is enough to give you access to the islands of Saint Croix, Saint John and Saint Thomas, as well as the many other smaller surrounding islands.

St. John, USVI

St. John, USVI

Unspoiled natural beauty

St. John was one of the islands which experienced considerable damage in 2017; however, much progress has been in restoring the area to its pre-hurricane state. If you’re a nature lover, you’ll appreciate the fact that 60% of the island is land protected by the National Park Service. So please be sure to wade in the waters of Trunk Bay, hike along the scenic Reef Bay Trail or explore the ruins and history of Annaberg Sugar Plantation. All of these American treasures are absolute “musts” when visiting this very resilient island.

The Westin St. John

The Westin St. John Villas

A range of places to stay

Most of USVI’s hotels are now back in business. Among them is the Westin St. John Resort Villas, which recently reopened (with additional property enhancements currently underway). Known for its amazing views of Cruz Bay and wonderful guest services, the Westin St. John is ideal for families in need of a luxurious getaway. Every 1-, 2- and 3-bedroom villa and townhouse includes a full-sized kitchen with appliances, washer & dryer and Westin’s popular Heavenly Bed. Be sure to book this property with Orbitz and save even more when you join Orbitz Rewards.

ALSO: Perks, upgrades, more days in paradise…. Join the Orbitz Rewards loyalty program—it’s free!

Chef Digby of Braata

Chef Digby of Braata

A foodie’s paradise

As the largest of the US Virgin Islands, St. Croix is famously known for lush foliage, luxurious accommodations and a fantastic food scene—which can be thoroughly enjoyed at its annual St. Croix Food & Wine Experience. The selection of restaurants is impressive, too, especially if you’re looking for a farm-to-table experience. On a past visit, chef Digby Stidiron wowed us with his gastronomic artistry at Balter. Now he’s on the other side of St. Croix in Frederiksted with Braata, which the chef describes as a “casual rum bar and West Indian Kitchen” serving island delights like crab cakes or shrimp & grits, as well as its signature Bush Doctor cocktail (which includes herb infused whiskey, lemon & honey). You can read more on everything you could possibly want to eat in St. Croix here.

 

Buccaneer Resort, USVI

Buccaneer Resort, USVI

A romantic getaway for couples

Long stretches of white sand, sunset sailings, intimate waterfront restaurants… What could be more romantic? USVI delivers when it comes to romantic hotels, too. Among them is the Buccaneer Resort, a favorite among global travelers. Accommodations with expansive views, delicious cuisine and a bevy of activities make the Buccaneer Resort an ideal home away from home for couples and honeymooners. View additional photos and learn more about this amazing resort at Orbitz.com.

St. Thomas, USVI

St. Thomas, USVI

More than just a cruise port-of-call

As the primary island of the USVI, St. Thomas is known to millions for its cruise port-of-call Charlotte Amalie. While it is a very popular place for ships to dock, there is so much more to this island than the bounty of boutique shops and souvenir stores that pepper its pier. Visit St. Thomas for a few nights to experience snorkeling, amazing views, history, outstanding food and much more.

Parrotheads are more than welcome here

If you’re a fan of Jimmy Buffet—or even the laidback tropical lifestyle he represents—you’ll love Wyndham  Margaritaville St. Thomas. The theme of the resort, much like the Margaritaville restaurants, is “tropical casual”—so flip-flops, shorts and T-shirts are very much appropriate attire at this 4-star bay side resort. Every suite (Studio, 1 & 2 bedroom) is spacious and includes a Frozen Concotion Maker, so you may create libations while you’re relaxing in your suite. Of course, Margaritaville Restaurant lives here, as well, and you while you can dine there in air-conditioned comfort, you can also order your meal to-go and enjoy it while basking at Coki Beach, which is adjacent to the resort. Book your stay using Orbitz Rewards and save.

Caribbean Fish Market

Caribbean Fish Market

A jazzy brunch

Just next door to the Ritz-Carlton St. Thomas (re-opening Summer 2019), you’ll find a most extraordinary Sunday Jazz Brunch at the Caribbean Fish Market. Under its typical operation, you’ll find a menu full of surf & turf delights – however, on Sundays, the menu transforms into something that can be best described as joyful! Everything from the Brunch Pizza, to the Philly Cheesesteak Benedict, to the Blueberry Pancakes, you will find that having brunch here is certainly the right way to start the week!

Booze with a view

For the very best views of St. Thomas, you must visit the aptly named Mountain Top. While there you can shop through a vast array of USVI memorabilia and duty free items, including Cruzan Rum. On that note, Mountain Top is where the Banana Daiquiri originated and you can still enjoy this tasty beverage here (and yes, the Banana Daiquiri is still made with Cruzan Rum, direct from St. Croix).

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Tagged: Caribbean

Note: Orbitz compensates authors for their writings appearing on this site.

Jason Gordon

Jason Gordon

Jason is executive producer of the multiple award-winning luxury travel series andiamo! UPTOWN (@andiamotv), which airs throughout the U.S. every week on Magic Johnson's Aspire channel.

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