A quick guide to Tortola in British Virgin Islands

This article was last updated on April 16, 2022

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Crystal waters lap gently at the edges of the sandy shores. Lush green vegetation covers the hillside, stretching from sea level to the island’s tallest peaks. Villas, many of which are only accessible via snaking dirt roads, dot the inland horizon.

Tortola, the capitol of the British Virgin Islands, offers an ideal Caribbean getaway. The island caters to both American and European tourists, and is the perfect destination for those seeking a tropical escape. Vacationers can choose from a multitude of activities and restaurants to ensure a truly unforgettable trip.

As with most island destinations, one of Tortola’s greatest assets are its beaches. Tortola boasts numerous sandy beaches, perfect for basking in the sun or splashing in the gentle waves. Brewer’s Bay and the well-secluded Smuggler’s Cove offer some of the island’s best snorkeling. Fish – ranging from a few inches to over an arm’s length long – glide beneath the surface of the water.

Other beaches, such as Long Bay Beach, are more suitable for a less adventurous beach goer seeking to simply relax in the sand.  It’s easy to spend a few hours merely lounging on one of Tortola’s peaceful beaches. A drive over to Beef Island takes travelers to yet another one of the area’s pristine beaches, sure to dazzle all visitors with its stunning teal-blue water.

In need of a break from the beach? Tortola offers more than just its sandy shores. Sage Mountain National Park contains twelve hiking trails that wind through the area’s dense forest. Regarded as the highest point in both the British and U.S. Virgin Islands, Sage Mountain stands at 1,716 feet tall and offers spectacular views of Tortola and its surrounding islands.

The island also contains a few historic sites. Fort Burt was built by the British in 1776 and currently gives tourists a glimpse of Tortola’s past. Her Majesty’s Prison, located in Road Town, is another fairly popular historic destination.

Tortola’s wide variety of delicious restaurants has left the island well equipped to nourish even the pickiest eater. From beachside grub to fine Italian dining, Tortola’s restaurants are sure to satisfy.

Capriccio di Mare is widely known for it’s Italian cuisine and signature Bellini. Bananakeet Café is a popular destination, known for its great view and menu. D’Best Cup is a wonderful breakfast spot. Located right in Soper’s Hole Marina, the café caters to both the local crowd and tourists, making for a diverse dining experience.

The above restaurants are only a small example of the dining opportunities Tortola contains. Various beach bars are easy to find, and are sure to provide the traditional island vibe.

No matter what you choose to do or eat, Tortola is a Caribbean destination sure to please any vacationer.

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