It’s peak travel season right now, with the holidays taking people to places all over the world to see their families and get some well-deserved R&R during the Northern Hemisphere’s most inclement season. The Virgin Islands are a popular choice for those seeking tropical getaways, for their lush island greenery and multiple blue shades of the magnificent Caribbean Sea. Particularly for divers and snorkelers, a Virgin Island vacation will offer the creme de la creme of reef ecosystems to explore during your visit.
More than 500 species of fish inhabit the reefs of the Virgin Islands, living and hunting within more than 40 species of coral and hundreds of invertebrates. It is not at all unusual to spot sea turtles in this region among throngs of brightly colored fish, as well as sightings of eels, octopus, and seahorses peeking out at you from behind a seaweed stalk or craggy rock. Visibility is often quite good in the Virgin Islands, and the bathwater warm water temperatures persist throughout much of the year.
Wreck divers will get a kick out of the many shipwrecks found around St. Thomas, including WWII housing barges and a former tank-landing Navy ship. Each of these vessels has become a boon for local marine life, creating the unique structural frame necessary to house a wide array of creatures and perpetuate growth.
Check out this awesome video from a group of divers who filmed four dives together — two on St. Thomas and two on St. Maarten — completely on GoPro cameras to get fantastic footage of what an afternoon of diving will be like on a Virgin Island vacation.
Image via SNORKELINGDIVES.COM