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Snorkeling Buck Island Reef National Monument and Turtle Beach, St. Croix

 
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Blog Post - April 12, 2021

We went out to Buck Island to experience Turtle Beach and to snorkel the Buck Island Reef National Monument. This is a protected coral reef that has a snorkeling trail going through it.

We booked our excursion with Big Beard’s Adventure Tours out of Christiansted, St. Croix. We booked the half day tour (3.5 hours), which takes you out to to Buck Island on a catamaran called the Adventure. The Adventure is a 42’ power catamaran.

We arrived at Turtle Beach, which has the softest sand and crystal clear turquoise blue water. We explored the beach and then did some snorkeling. We brought our own gear, but they provide it if you didn't bring your own.

Then we got back onto the Adventure catamaran and headed over to the other side of the island to snorkel Buck Island Reef National Monument. The water was so clear and we saw all sorts of fish.

This excursion was worth it and we will do it again when we go back to St. Croix.

Here's a photo of Big Beard's Adventure Tours in St. Croix:

Big Beard's Adventure Tours, St. Croix

We sailed to Buck Island on the Adventure catamaran.

The Adventure Catamaran, St. Croix

This is the view as we sailed up to Buck Island's Turtle Beach.

Buck Island, St. Croix

The catamaran has two staircases that went down so we could walk down onto Turtle Beach.

Getting Off the Catamaran at Turtle Beach, St. Croix

These are the views of Turtle Beach on Buck Island:

Turtle Beach, St. Croix
Turtle Beach at Buck Island, St. Croix
Go past Isaac's Bay Beach to get to Jack's Bay Beach, St. Croix

We found these trees that had sea shells on them.

Sea Shell Tree at Turtle Beach, St. Croix

We snorkeled at Turtle Beach. The water was alright for snorkeling, but nothing near as good as the Buck Island Reef.

View of Jack's Bay Beach, St. Croix

We sailed to the other side of Buck Island to the Underwater Trail. They have markers along the coral reef to guide you through.

Buck Island Underwater Trail, St. Croix
Red Pavilion at Jack's Bay Beach, St. Croix
Fish at Buck Island Reef, St. Croix
Brain Coral at Buck Island Reef, St. Croix

The colors on the fish kept amazing me.

Colorful fish at Buck Island Reef, St. Croix

There were a lot of Parrot Fish, which have amazing colors.

Parrot Fish at Buck Island, St. Croix

The coral reef at Buck Island Reef is so beautiful.

Coral Reef at Buck Island, St. Croix

This is the view from the catamaran as we were leaving Buck Island. The turquoise blue water is amazing.

Leaving Buck Island, St. Croix

This excursion to Buck Island was amazing! We can't wait to go again.

MAPS:

Buck Island Reef National Monument, St. Croix Map:

(Click on the map above to go to a Google Maps larger view.)

Big Beard's Adventure Tours, St. Croix Map:

81 Queen Cross St, Christiansted, St Croix 00820, U.S. Virgin Islands

(Click on the map above to go to a Google Maps larger view.)

PRICING:

We paid $75 per adult and $60 per child.

We booked our excursion through Big Beard's Adventure Tours.

There were 3 members of the crew. We tipped two of them $5 each and the 3rd we tipped $10 as it was her birthday.

Total cost of the excursion including tips: $322.10

Big Beard's Adventure Tours Receipt

CHECKLIST:

This is a list of what is included and what to bring:

Arrive 30 minutes early!

What's included:

Snorkel gear: mask, snorkel, fins Flotation vest

Cooler with ice for your items

Drinking water

Fruit punch,

Mutiny punch (after snorkeling)

What to bring:

Swimsuit

Towel

Sun protection (reef-safe sunscreen-no spray)

Sunglasses

Hat

Snacks/drinks (no glass, please)

Cash for gratuities On the Boat

We don't allow shoes to be worn on the boat unless you have a medical condition that requires that you wear shoes.

Please no aerosol sunscreens as it makes the boat deck slick.

Toilet facilities are available on the boat.

Facilities on Buck Island are primitive. No services are available on Buck Island.

You should plan on bringing any items you would like throughout the day.

Other things to bring:

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