Virgin Gorda International Airport in the British Virgin Islands

Why We Like Virgin Gorda

Virgin Gorda International Airport in the British Virgin Islands

Only small airplanes can land at Virgin Gorda International Airport in the British Virgin Islands.

A sunset view from Virgin Gorda, BVI.

A sunset view from Virgin Gorda, BVI.

Mermaid's Dockside Bar & Grill In Virgin Gorda, BVI.

Mermaid’s Dockside Bar & Grill in Virgin Gorda, BVI has a great view.

Hospital, Fire Dept. and Jail on Virgin Gorda, BVI.

The Hospital, Fire Dept. and Jail is my favorite building on Virgin Gorda, BVI.

Bitter End Yacht Club, Virgin Gorda, BVI

Walking to the Bitter End Yacht Club in Virgin Gorda, BVI.

Virgin Gorda, BVI

We love swimming in the crystal water on Virgin Gorda, BVI. (Photo by dorothyadele)

Our top 16 reasons we visit Virgin Gorda, BVI.

1) Customs and immigration usually take less than ten minutes.

2) Crowds are limited:

Cruise ships must anchor and shuttle passengers on tenders.

Only small planes and helicopters can land on the airport runway.

3) Take off, landing, and flying in a small plane is an adventure, and occasionally you can copilot.

4) Locals greet travelers with a smile and seem to appreciate tourism.

5) The island is not commercialized: Colorful homes and businesses dot the island, and there are no chain hotels or obtuse structures.

6) White sand beaches usually have a scattering of people unless a cruise ship is anchored, or tourists are visiting from other islands.

7) Coral reefs provide great snorkeling.

8) The crime rate is low.

9) While driving, you don’t see many cars, therefore tailgating is rare.

10) There are no red lights and few stop signs.

11) Restaurants feature everything from fresh grilled lobster, sushi, barbecue, grilled steaks, pizza and more.

12) Casual attire is acceptable almost everywhere.

13) Many visit Virgin Gorda specifically to explore the beauty of The Baths where overlapping boulders bulge out of the land and water, providing a granite maze where tourists trek through caves and pools of this natural wonder.

14) Mountain roads offer a challenging workout with views of shimmering royal blue water and boulder-studded mountains.

15) Hiking to the highest part of the island, Gorda Peak, takes about 35 minutes. At the top, climbers ascend a double-tiered ladder to a platform with a magnificent vista of the BVI.

16) Visiting other British or US Virgin Islands by ferry, boat, or plane is easy, and a must do.

RELATED POSTS

https://dorothyadele.wordpress.com/2017/01/07/__virgingorda/

http://www.nomadicmatt.com/travel-blogs/best-of-virgin-islands/

https://www.uncommoncaribbean.com/2016/06/13/uncommon-attraction-otherworldly-north-sound-virgin-gorda/

Advertisements

Goat Shot on Virgin Gorda

img_2128

Shots fired from the dirt road on Virgin Gorda. (Photo by dorothyadele)

Goats bleating and roosters crowing, some clueless about dawn’s arrival, awakened us each morning in Virgin Gorda. Skittering anoles, singing frogs and dancing butterflies made us feel like we were in a sanctuary safe for all. Unfortunately, that changed today.

I was sitting on the porch sipping coffee when I spotted a pickup truck driving down the dirt trail adjacent to our rental. It stopped. Someone perched a rifle, or similar firearm, out the passenger’s window. Lights flashed as four shots blasted from the gun muzzle through the thick brush, just yards from our residence. Goats bleated, and one screamed louder than the rest for longer than I wanted to hear.

As the whimpering subsided, the truck crept haltingly down the mountain, made a full stop, then proceeded to the bottom of the hill and turned around. As it ascended, I saw what I believed was a goat carcass in the back of the truck.

Though the slaughter disturbed me, someone was making their living on Virgin Gorda.

 

Related Posts

https://dorothyadele.wordpress.com/2017/01/14/why-we-like-virgin-gorda/

Weekly Photo Challenge: Near and Far

Image

St. Barths’ runway is 2,133 feet long. It is one of the shortest runways in the world.

Gustaf III Airport Runway in St. Barths

First Flight to St. Barths, I was the Co-Pilot

When my husband, Doug, and I visited St Martin, our friend Gene invited us to stay with him on St. Barths, which is a quick flight or boat ride away. Two cultures split St Martin, French and Dutch. We flew from the French side of St. Martin, because St. Barths is French, and we wanted to avoid customs.

Gustaf III Airport Runway in St. Barths

We hired a pilot who owned a small plane to fly us to St. Barths.

The night before our flight, strong winds blew through our villa and knocked over a lamp. I awoke, worried about our dangerous flight into an airport with  a runway that measures 2,133 feet long,one of the shortest runways in the world. 

St. Barths’ airport nestles between two mountains and the Carribean Sea. If you land too soon or to late, you crash into the sea or the mountain.

The next morning, we met our long -blond- haired-laid-back pilot Christian at the St. Martin’s airport. I was surprised when we climbed aboard a plane that had only three seats. My husband wedged himself into the back seat, and I climbed into the co-pilot seat. My first thought was — if Christian had a heart attack, we were doomed.

When we took off, I watched Christian put on head phones. I hoped that he was listening to instructions from the airport control tower, but I feared that he was listening to Jimi Hendrix.

The flight was about 15 minutes, and the Caribbean Sea sparkled. I started to relax, but that changed abruptly. The nerve-racking part about landing in St. Barths is after the plane clears the first mountain. (We were elated when it missed the mountain.) The plane stalls than dives to approach the runway. Butterflies invade your stomach.

Gustaf III Runway and St. Jean Beach

It is frightening but exhilarating. The pilot must break quickly after landing to avoid the Caribbean at St. Jean Beach.

After we landed, we saw a small plane wing jutting out of the sea at the end of the runway. Christian said that the plane didn’t make it and that it was not uncommon. This is a clip of a plane that missed the runway. Usually passengers only receive minor injuries, thank goodness!

Since that first flight into St. Barths, when I fly on a commercial flight, I watch and listen for the passengers’ reaction during the approach to St. Barths. When we make the approach, someone always gasps.
Sent from my iPad