WHERE TO RENT EQUIPMENT? - Alphabetical Order

1. Cruz Bay Water Sports – Located at the Westin – so if your staying there probably a logical choice for equipment. 

2. Low Key Water Sports – Just turn right at the ferry dock and you’ll run into them. They have rentals, snorkel, sailing and dive trips.

3. Lumber Yard – Can’t remember the name of the place, but there’s an additional location, just as you turn into the Lumber Yard (don’t worry, you’ll find it) on the right. Good equipment and nice people.

4. Patagon Dive Center – Don’t know much about them but unless you are staying at Caneel Bay Resort or other North Shore villas they are probably too far out for those staying in Cruz Bay Area. I suspect most of the snorkeling is done on-site and not one of the better locations.

Cost for a week rental depending where you rent should be from $50.00 to $65.00/ week. All of the above also have various PADI Certification Classes and offer daily dive trips both in USVI and BVI’s 

WHERE TO GO? - There are numerous choices depending on experience, endurance, and ability.

1. Trunk Bay – This North Shore Beach is the Number 1 snorkel and beach destination on St. John. Which means it gets very crowded starting around 10:30 am when cruise passengers arrive from St. Thomas to spend a few hours on this famous beach. So get there early or after 2:30 pm to have a little privacy. Take the underwater trail out to the island. (I’ve always wondered how they got the fish to stay in the same place each day)? Good place for children snorkeling, has all amenities and lifeguard. But honestly, not much in terms of fish.

Maho Beach


2. Maho Bay – A little further down past Trunk is Maho. Park in the new lot or if your lucky by the edge of the road. This is my favorite “beer drinking” beach. Wide, usually no people and likely to see some turtles out about twenty yards or so.

3. Leinster Bay – Located on the East End near Coral Bay. This is gonna be a hike! Almost a mile from the end of the paved road is the bay and also Waterlemon Key. But well worth it. You’ll likely have company with several wild donkeys that call this area home. Go to the right and swim along the rocks here you will likely see turtles and rays.

4. Francis Bay – My personal favorite. At end of paved road head down the bumpy dirt road for about a quarter of a mile. Try and get there early during season cause there’s only about eight parking places but if full just park by the side of the road. Usually calm with some overnight boats in harbor. I usually go to the right at end of beach by rocks – lots of turtles, rays, and many types of fish.


Make sure wherever you stay, the villa has coolers and chairs for the beach. Take plenty of bottle water and of course, other favorite drinks - cans only. 

See you on St. John and HAVE FUN!