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Josh Van Dyke, British Virgin Islands Travel Guide, touring Josh Van Dyke, visiting Josh Van Dyke - Indian Chief Travel
BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS  |  The Smaller Islands, British Virgin Islands Travel Guide
Sunday, June 16, 2024
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Josh Van Dyke

Jost Van Dyke

Like a mischievous sibling, Jost Van Dyke has a different personality than Tortola and Virgin Gorda. It’s the “party island,” thanks to scores of restaurants and watering holes that stay open late and cater to merrymakers from the charter boats anchored offshore. The anchorages here are extremely popular. Jost Van Dyke’s best-known resident, Foxy (Callwood) keeps the island lively. He organizes wooden boat regattas, his concerts feature such well-known performers as Burning Spear and his lavish parties on New Year’s Eve and other holidays are lots of fun.

Named for a Dutch pirate, Jost (Yost) Van Dyke is west of Tortola, but is closest (four miles) to St. John, USVI. A long, narrow, hilly island, Jost Van Dyke has 211 residents, most of whom live in the village at Great Harbour. There is a church and a school, a few shops, colorful bars and eateries. The island is laid-back by day and cars, electricity and telephones are recent additions.

Most of the island is uninhabited. Whether you visit Jost Van Dyke for a day, or if you decide to stay for a few days, you’ll spend most of your time at the three lively anchorages, with their pristine beaches and tiny settlements. Until recently, virtually all visitors to the island stayed aboard charter boats. There were hardly any places to stay on the island and there are still only a few. Some villas have been built to augment the two small hotels and campgrounds.

The settlements are Great Harbour, Little Harbour and White Bay. Great Harbour is the largest. A sheltered bay, it is where the ferries dock and is home to the greatest number of colorful bars and restaurants.

To the west of Great Harbour is White Bay, which has one of the BVI’s most beautiful beaches. A taxi can take you to White Bay, but you can easily walk and that will allow you to see how lovely Jost Van Dyke is. The islands’ only “hotel” (six cottages) is here and the island’s only gourmet restaurant is here as well. White Bay also has the island’s only watersports center and a water trampoline.

The third anchorage, Little Harbour, is a sheltered lagoon to the east of Great Harbour. It is a calm anchorage with a small marina and several restaurants. The island’s only road links the three settlements.

There are several tiny cays off the east coast: Little Jost Van Dyke was once inhabited but is not at this time; Diamond Cay has a small marina and Foxy’s newest restaurant; Sandy Cay and Sandy Spit are both uninhabited, but many yachts anchor near them for they have excellent snorkeling.

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