U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS  |  St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands Travel Guide
Friday, July 3, 2020
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Charlotte Amalie

Charlotte Amalie

Key Streets: Waterfront Drive

This four-lane thoroughfare girdles the harbor and is the site of monumental traffic jams at 8 am and again at 5 pm. The harbor sidewalk, a lovely promenade with terminals for inter-island ferries and day-charters, was once part of the harbor. Before it was filled in to build the drive, the water came right up to the warehouses that once stored pirate’s treasure and now house boutiques.

Local fishermen and farmers hawk their wares at makeshift stalls, and there are kiosks where you can arrange a water- based tour. Across the road, the street is crammed with parked cars, shops, banks and eateries.

Dronningen’s Gade (Main Street) The town’s major shopping street runs from Emancipation Park to Market Square. Both sides of the street are crammed with shops selling merchandise garnered from all parts of the world and sold at “duty-free” prices. Crowded during the day, and bustling with visitors (you’ll spot them by the number of shopping bags they are juggling) from the cruise ships that drop anchor daily, a hush falls over the street at 5 pm.

Norre Gade (North Street) The continuation of Main Street east of Emancipation Park, Norre Gade is home to several of our recommended sights.

Vimmelskaft’s Gade (Back Street) The third block from the harbor, Back Street has fewer shops but several good restaurants and late-night clubs.

The Shopping Alleys

Drake’s Passage, Trompeter Gade, Royal Dane Mall and Hibiscus Alley are among the picturesque alleys that connectWaterfront Drive and Dronningen’s Gade. Although they’ve been converted into shopping streets, they retain their cobblestoned walkways and raucous atmosphere.


A peninsula that juts into the harbor west of downtown Charlotte Amalie, the area was settled by French-speaking fishermen and still retains traces of their community. Today, it houses many fashionable restaurants and night spots.

Sub Base (Crown Bay Marina)

This is another peninsula jutting into the harbor, even farther west of Charlotte Amalie than Frenchtown. The area was named for the base located here during the Second World War. It now has several restaurants and a new cruise ship dock.

Bluebeard’s Hill

To the east of the downtown shopping district, Bluebeard’s Hill, now the site of a luxury hotel, is the spot where the pirate Bluebeard built a tower so he could watch his pirate bands arrive with their loot. The tower still stands today and commands a striking view of the town, harbor and surrounding areas.

Havensight Mall

East of the commercial center and adjacent to the West Indies Dock (where cruise passengers disembark), Havensight is a bustling shopping area. Most of the shops are branches of well-known downtown stores. There are several small restaurants, a supermarket and the island’s best bookstore, Dockside Books.

Last updated November 26, 2007
Posted in   U.S. Virgin Islands  |  St. Thomas
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