Sailing the British Virgin Islands

Enjoy these memories with me that were all made on a journey to the British Virgin Islands with the Gottschalk family!


Day 1

We started this grand adventure by flying into St. Thomas, then taking a taxi to the ferry dock. Once there, we took a short lunch break at the restaurant above with a nice view of the harbor including a sea plane landing and takeoff.

Mandatory airplane window shot
Ruins across from the restaurant
Seaplane takeoff

The ferry comes with service before it departs, and good views along the way.

Our ferry
The ferry beer line
Cannon next to ruins
Looking back to St. Thomas

Gold underwater? We had a sun-shower right after

After our ferry arrived and we took another taxi to the marina, we had some time to shower, relax, and look around. There even happened to be a wedding next door.

Chelsea waiting for a spot to drop our bags off
There's always a bigger fish

Wedding lights

Day 2

After our first night on the boat, we all got acquainted with operating our home for the next few days and headed for Norman Island. Once we settled in, I got my inaugural snorkeling trip around the rocky coast. The waters were truly incredible, and filled with so many different colorful coral and fish.

The boat, and learning about the main sail
We're not the only people at Norman Island
Ocean Girlz come in all ages
Lots of people having fun on inflatable pizza
And dragons
One of The Indians where we snorkeled on the way out
Sneaking in some side project time in our cozy cabin

This little guy squirts water to look for food

Day 3

With an early morning start to get a mooring around the Indians for another snorkel we made our way up to Jost Van Dyke.

Soaking up some sun
Full sails
Pirates all around
I want this
Nice little perch on the tip of Tortola

Flash tat

We arrived and anchored up by the Sandy Spit, then took our dingy to the main island for a little hike to the Bubbling Pool. It's a nice little rock formation where the waves crash through but it's a pretty small pool. Long lunch over with, we headed back to the boat then swam to the inviting Sandy Spit and had fun playing on the perfect beach.

The Sandy Spit
Tubing fun
All you could hope for
They must be looking for the buried gold now
Photo Credit: Lindsey

Day 4

This was by far the longest and hardest day of the trip. We were heading upwind going east all day and the seas out on the exposed northern side of Tortola were somewhere around 6-10 feet from top to bottom all day. After 7 hours of holding on we made it to Leverick Bay intact but exhausted. That night we managed to see a pirate show and Lindsey and I entered the conch shell blowing contest and both failed admirably.

Finally safe and sound
The Leverick Bay resort

Day 5

After the family took a morning diving trip we all had a grand New Years celebration.

Dogfish in search of invasive Lionfish

Notice his friend

When you really gotta go

Gray Angelfish

Mr. Ray

Pre-Dinner Snacks on the boat
The crew, minus the first mate
...And we got the timer working

Sisters Reunited
Plus Mom
Plus Dad

Flash tat's unite!

Day 6

New years day was another great day filled with snorkeling and smooth sailing. We ended up at Cooper island and had fun swimming with the turtles.

Snorkeling spot off Virgin Gorda
Diving In
Spot the Flounder
Cooper Island harbor

Sisterly Love

The seahorse has turned into a rook

... neeed.. aaiirr...
In pursuit

There are other sea creatures here too...

Off to find more snorkeling spots

Cooper Island expedition crew
Beach Hangout

Day 7

Another relaxing day, this time heading back to Norman Island for the night and more snorkeling.

Sweet crib
I'm an artist
Always time for more reading

Day 8

An early morning start got us back to Tortola for the ferry back to St. Thomas and the flight home.

Simply Stunning Sunrise
And that's the trip folks!

Hope you enjoyed the photos half as much as I enjoyed the trip! Special thanks to Lindsey for the underwater GoPro shots.