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Fun & Interesting Things to Do on Your Next Vacation

Hello everyone, and happy Tuesday! So as many of you may know, my five-year-old son Dalton is a kindergartener at Gifft Hill here in St. John. He absolutely loves school and is so excited about his first field trip to Annaberg Gardens, which happens tomorrow. The gardens at Annaberg are lovingly tended to by my friend Charles, a man who has taught me so much about native plants over the years. Charles and Ital, another St. John treasure, will teach the children about a variety of native plants and will even give them the opportunity to sample a few.

Charles, the gardener at Annaberg, sent Dalton home with a soursop plant last winter. We planted this tree at our new home in Fish Bay.

This all got me thinking. The Virgin Islands National Park has so many great activities, seminars, and hikes that are available to the public, many of which are free of charge. So today, I thought I would share several of them with you. There is so much more to this island than simply sun and fun. Please check out some of St. John’s rich culture while you’re here.

Here are some of the current offerings happening in the Virgin Islands National Park.

Taste of the Virgin Islands

Ms. Oliva Christian also provides demonstrations at the Annaberg Cook House.

This is a brand new seminar that takes place in the Raintree Cafe at Cinnamon Bay Campground. Learn about local cuisine, food culture in the Virgin Islands, and traditional cooking techniques. Ms. Olivia Christian is a St. Johnian who grew up working summers in the Daylight Bakery in Charlotte Amalie which is owned by her family. She studied food service at college, raised four sons, and loves sharing her passion for VI cuisine. Ms. Olivia also oversees the cook house at Annaberg Plantation. This is a free event that happens on the last Friday of the month from November through June.

Annaberg Cultural Program

Please take the time to visit my friend Charles at Annaberg.

Annaberg was the largest plantation on St. John at one time. Visit the site and watch cultural demonstrations like bread making, and learn about local plants, fruits, and more. This is a free offering that happens every Monday through Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. November through June.

Traditional Uses of Plants

Ital is a wealth of knowledge here on St. John.

Local cultural ambassador, Ital Delroy Anthony shares his passion for the culture and history of St. John, especially focused on the relationship between plants and culture. These talks take place at Cinnamon Bay. This is a free offering that happens the first Friday of the month from November through June.

Reef Bay Hike

The waterfall is currently flowing at Reef Bay. Image credit: Steve Simonsen Photography

Unfortunately, the guided Reef Bay hike has yet to resume this season. It is expected to start up again in January. The trail is still open, but there will not be a boat waiting for you at the bottom of the 2+ mile trail, which means you should be prepared to complete the steep hike back up.

Want to know about all of the offerings in the Virgin Islands National Park? Click here to learn more.

Want to learn more about St. John? Take an island tour with us!

Learn more here –> Full & half days available. Rated “Excellent” on TripAdvisor.

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  1. DeVere

    We visited Annaberg on Tuesday of this week. Olivia invited us into her kitchen for a taste of homemade banana bread and a few sips of very delicious Sorrel tea; what a treat! Then she spent time describing the plantation and other interesting (and saddening) facts about life on St John, past and present. I could have listened for hours. I met Charles also. He’s a sweet and fun man who encourages participation from his audience. What a time we had watching and listening as he showed us plants to sniff, a bowl to make from a calabas tree fruit. He was in a word: cool and so was his demonstration. I loved it.

  2. Pingback:Guided Reef Bay Hike Set to Resume - Explore STJ

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