Both the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI) and the British Virgin Islands (BVIs) are top vacation and yacht charter destinations for many avid travelers. The USVI, made up of three main islands including St. Thomas, St. Croix, and St. John, are a hub for international shoppers thanks to its $1,600 duty-free allowance and no sales tax. While the BVIs, with four large islands including Tortola, Virgin Gorda, Jost Van Dyke, and Anegada, don’t share those same benefits, they do offer delightful shopping opportunities for island visitors.
Let’s explore some of the must-see shopping locations in the USVI and BVIs.
Known as the leading marina for visiting superyachts to St. Thomas, Yacht Haven Grande is also a haven for shoppers looking to purchase luxury fashion brands in a lovely setting along the waterfront. With more than 80,000 square feet of retail space, this location boasts three restaurants along with stores like Gucci, Coach, Bulgari, Louis Vuitton, Tommy Hilfiger, and more.
For those looking for unique gifts to bring back from their trip, no visit to St. Thomas would be complete without a stop at Havensight Mall. Although sometimes a little busy with tourists from nearby docking cruise ships, the mall presents a great opportunity to take home apparel, jewelry, liquor, perfumes, and more—all at duty-free prices.
Dronningens Gade, in downtown Charlotte Amalie
The last stop on your St. Thomas shopping tour should end on Main Street, also known as Dronningens Gade, in downtown Charlotte Amalie. This area features many boutiques hidden away in alleys, such as Royal Dane Mall, Palm Passage, and Riise Alley. While indulging in purchases, you can also enjoy the scenery and sightseeing as you navigate through the older, historic downtown area.
Located on the nearby island of St. John, Cruz Bay offers another charming line of shops and boutiques for visitors to explore. The Wharfside shopping area runs right along the beach of Cruz Bay and is home to cute stores such as St. John Spice, Freebird Creations, Bamboo Studios, Vibe Collection, and more. This area provides the perfect opportunity to take home items like fine wine, handmade jewelry, local spices, and valuable arts and crafts pieces.
One of two main shopping areas in St. Croix, eagers shoppers won’t want to miss visiting Christiansted’s Boardwalk, Company Street, Kings Alley Walk, Caravelle Arcade, and the Pan Am Pavilion. Consider picking up a “hook bracelet” from Sonya ltd., locally known for being worn either up or down, depending on your luck at love. Before leaving, be sure to stop by the local dive shop, Cane Bay Dive Shop East at Pan Am Pavilion, to pick up your very own snorkeling or scuba diving gear.
The highlight of Frederiksted is Strand Street, best known for its local St. Croix Landmarks Museum Store, featuring West Indian crafts, arts, Caribbean maps, and much more. If you’re a rum drinker or if you’re just interested in getting a true taste of the islands, you also may want to stop by the Captain Morgan Gift Shop and visitors center.
To finish up your Virgin Islands shopping spree, be sure to stop in Tortola on Road Town’s Main Street. Shops like Flamboyance offer luxury cosmetics and perfumes, while the Sunny Caribbee Spice Co. attracts visitors with its famous “West Indian hangover cure” and the “Arawak love potion.”