Seated at the heart of the Caribbean, the beautiful overseas territory of the British Virgin Islands (BVI) is famed for its ability to provide fine luxury retreats infused with breathtaking vistas, turquoise sea and the tantalizing cuisine characteristic of the region. Considered as highly approachable for their identity as a British Overseas Territory, their excellence lies in their natural splendour, whose potential multiplies over the four main islands and over fifty smaller islands and cays considered part of the BVI.
This impressive breadth of terrain simply begs to be discovered by those eager for an immersion in nature, as it simply follows that the BVI’s territory provides some of the Caribbean’s most rewarding hikes for travelers. Given that such a quantity of islands and cays can make it difficult to know where to start (especially while taking into account the preferred terrain, fitness level and ease of accessibility), we’ve gathered our expertise to lay out our top three hikes in the British Virgin Islands to steer you to the finest possible vacation experience in this Caribbean paradise.
Breathtaking views from Gorda Peak
One of the best parts of a luxury villa vacation in the British Virgin Islands can be the opportunity to retreat into a personal haven, where the lifestyle breaks with the fast-paced world of the 21st century to take up a slower, relaxed rhythm. A number of hikes cater to those who prefer to take it easy while still embracing the natural splendour, such as the shorter 50-minute trail up to Gorda Peak, in Gorda Peak National Park, Virgin Gorda. Although the path steeps slightly and the hike is a little rocky at the outset, the path is generally highly accessible and leads to an excellent viewing platform at the peak’s highest point that offers views over to neighbouring St Thomas. A picnic table placed under the shade of a mango tree where the two trails meet allows for a pleasant lunch break, at which point you might be lucky enough to spot one of the world’s smallest lizards – the Virgin Gorda gecko.
Sage Mountain National Park
For nature enthusiasts, the wide variety of trails found in Sage Mountain National Park, Tortola are sure to delight. Established in 1964, the National Park is the BVI’s first, and is home to many native and introduced species of trees and plants, including mahogany and white cedar. With the mountain stretching up to 1716ft of scenic walking, it is the highest peak in the Virgin Islands’ expansive territory and so offers many different trails thread around its lush grounds. Beyond the easy hike up to the peak, spending some time on the Mahogany Forest Trail and the Rainforest trail promises chances of spotting mountain doves and thrushes, while a north-coast overlook and tower give views over nearby islands Jost Van Dyke, Great Tobago and Little Tobago.
Escape to Prickly Pear Island
If you’re in search of a little more adventure as part of a villa vacation in Virgin Gorda, the hiking trail on the island of Prickly Pear, located just east off Virgin Gorda in its North Sound, threads through the island’s natural reserve that was declared a British Virgin Islands National Park in 1988. Receiving its name from the density of Prickly Pear flowering cacti, the island’s salt ponds and north shore lie along the hiking trail that leads from Vixen Point Beach, ultimately reaching two beautiful, secluded bays at the end of the path. The short boat ride that it takes to get to the island makes for a real sense of immersing in the marine soul of the British Virgin Islands and can be a great introduction to the island’s great sailing opportunities worth exploring.
Whether you prefer to take the paths more or less well trodden, the intricate network of islands in the BVI is sure to delight your taste for natural adventure. After all, there is perhaps nothing more soothing than allowing your feet to insert you back into the natural world where we find an essential sense of peace and freedom. With a variety of fine villa rental options available in secluded locations, trust in Rental Escapes to provide you with a luxury experience that combines the best in natural splendour and relaxation, delivering you a holiday that provides you with the key to unlocking the hiking gems of the British Virgin Islands.