Wondering what to do in Charlotte Amalie? We’ve compiled a list of our favorite activities into a one-day itinerary. Check it out and let us know what you’d add to our list!
Start the day off right with a great breakfast. St. Thomas’s famous guava tarts and johnny cakes can be found at just about any local bakery. If you’re looking for something more filling, we love the egg-and-cheese croissant at Stir It Up Coffee Shop and Bakery near Havensight Point.
Photo: Breakfast at the Stir It Up Coffee Shop and Bakery
Dive into Charlotte Amalie’s History
With almost 400 years of history, there’s plenty to explore. Start at Fort Christian, built in 1672 by the island’s first Danish governor to defend against invaders. After you’ve had a chance to explore the museum inside, wander over to the St. Thomas Synagogue, the second-oldest such structure in the Western Hemisphere. Finally, stroll over to the 99 Steps and get ready to burn off the pastries you ate for breakfast! This scenic staircase (actually 103 steps in all) was built from bricks originally used as ballast in Danish sailing ships.
As a last stop, wander over to Bluebeard’s Castle, a former Danish fortress. It’s one of two tower-like formations in Charlotte Amalie that are named after pirates - Blackbeard’s Castle is also nearby. After you’ve snapped some photos in front of the castle, wander down to the nearby restaurant and bar. It’s a great place to look out over Charlotte Amalie’s harbor and imagine the pirate battles that took place there. Legend holds that the bay is still filled with sunken pirate gold!
Pro Tip: Let our concierge service help you schedule an island tour!
Treat Yourself to Duty-Free Shopping
Time to reward yourself with a little treasure of your own! St. Thomas is famous for duty-free shopping. Visitors can buy up to $1,600 of goods without incurring any taxes. It’s the perfect place to treat yourself to that special watch or piece of jewelry that you’ve been eyeing. The best shopping is located at Havensight Mall or along Yacht Haven Grande.
Pro Tip: Need shopping recommendations? Just ask!
Soak up the View
Time to head to the hills to watch the reflection of the setting sun on the water. Our favorite lookouts are Drake’s Seat or the Charlotte Amalie overlook. Drake’s Seat looks out over Magens Bay, with views of St. John, Little Tobago, Jost Van Dyke and a handful of smaller islands and cays. Did Sir Francis Drake really survey the islands from this vantage point? Probably not, but that hasn’t stopped the legend from being passed down from generation to generation.
From the Charlotte Amalie overlook you can gaze down into the bay and see nearby Hassel Island. Grab a snack or souvenir from one of the local vendors here before heading down to your last stop of the evening!
Treat Yourself to Something Delicious
Wrap up your day with dinner and drinks. Our favorite restaurants in or near Charlotte Amalie are:
Tell Us About Your Day in Charlotte Amalie
If this itinerary helped you plan your visit to Charlotte Amalie, leave a comment below and let us know! If you want to stay someplace close to the city, check out our Southside villas:
Villa Marbella (pictured below)