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St. John is home to some of the most pristine and beautiful beaches in the world. Listed below are our thoughts on the best of them.

Closest: Rendezvous Bay is located right in front of the villa, and can be reached by walking about 100 yards down the road. The beach consists of rocks, not sand, but the snorkeling along the rocky western shore of Ditliff Point is fantastic, and the beach is off-limits to non-residents (if you're renting Morningside, you're officially a resident!) so you'll have it pretty much to yourself. Swim out over the sea grass beds to see starfish colonies, rays and sea turtles.

Close, but no cigar: Great Cruz Bay, location of The Westin. The resort has a man-made beach that tends to have a lot of sea weed and other schmutz floating about due to currents in the area. You can do way better.

Most Famous: Trunk Bay, featuring an underwater marked snorkeling trail. Complete with snorkel gear rental shop, snack bar, changing facilities, and sometimes lots of tourists ferried over for the day from the cruise ships docked at St. Thomas.

Most amenities: Cinnamon Bay, with windsurfers, kayaks, mountain bikes and snorkel gear available for rent, along with a snack shop and changing facilities. Hiking trails across the road.

Less Crowded: Hawksnest Bay. Changing facilities, shelters & picnic tables are available. Excellent snorkeling in fairly shallow water along the nearby reef. Good place for beginners.

Also less crowded: Solomon Bay. Accessible from the National Park trailhead, a beautiful and pristine little gem. (Though contrary to popular tourist belief, it's not "clothing optional" - if the Park Service Rangers catch you, you'll be ticketed.)

Out-of-the-way: Maho, Francis, and Leinster Bays. Beautiful beaches, even fewer people. (Watch out for the current running between the point and Waterlemon Key at Leinster.)

Way-out-of-the-way: Salt Pond Bay. An exciting and beautiful 45 minute drive from town, Salt Pond Bay is a quarter mile hike down the trail from the parking lot to a secluded, broken coral beach. Excellent swimming, great snorkeling, and virtually no tourists. The National Park Service maintained Reef Bay Trail leads out to Rams Head point. Take along snacks, and something to drink. One of our favorites.

General Note: Do NOT leave valuables in your vehicle while you visit the beaches.
If you don’t want it with you on the beach, leave it at the villa.

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You've finally found your place in the sun!