Virgin Gorda is a large island in the East of the BVI island chain. It served as the capital of the BVIs until 1714 prior to the capital moving to Road Town Tortola. The main town is Spanish Town and this is known locally as The Valley where most locals live.
Sailing up the Sir Francis Drake Channel we first come to the famous anchorage The Baths. This tends to get very busy because the anchorage has a lot of mooring buoys for bareboats, and so larger yachts have to anchor out beyond these. This location is famous for it’s white sandy beaches and also swimming and walking between huge granite boulders. You are no longer able to land a dinghy on the beach, you have to tie your dinghy to a special dinghy mooring and swim in from this location that is a way off shore. If anyone is a weak swimmer then this is not a good option for you, as swimmers are regularly faced with an undercurrent. The better option in this case is to arrive by taxi to The Baths and then this way you can take a camera and you do not have to worry about the swim ashore.
Long Bay is a lovely anchorage sheltered by Mountain Point. You anchor in a deep pool surrounded on both sides by excellent reef that you can snorkel. There is also a lovely white sandy beach at this location that you can swim to. This anchorage is not tenable if there is any northerly swell.
North Sound is our favorite anchorage on Virgin Gorda due to its sheltered waters. This is a great location to spend a couple of nights simply because there is so much to do. We enter North Sound through the deep water channel in-between Prickly Pear Island and Mosquito Island, Sir Richard Branson’s new island. There are several anchorages within the Sound, off Mosquito Island behind the reef, off Prickly Pear Island, off Saba Rock or off Biras Creek & The Bitter End. Due to its sheltered waters this is a good location for water sports. There are lots of choices to dine ashore including the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda (YCCS) Virgin Gorda. This establishment has opened in 2011 and its main yacht club is in Porto Cervo Italy, but the Aga Khan decided that he wanted a base in the Caribbean. Despite its lavish grounds and fantastic infinity pool, the YCCS are most welcoming and anyone can visit for a drink, lunch or dinner and enjoy the use of the facilities. Hiking is excellent here with marked trails over the back of The Bitter End Yacht Club to Biras Creek. For guests who want to visit the Baths or to take a short island tour this is an excellent starting point. A taxi would meet you at Gun Creek and drive you over the hillside stopping at several look out points so that you can photograph both South Sound and also North Sound. Then you can visit The Baths with your camera and not have to worry about the swim in to shore. You can also visit the disused Copper Mine on Virgin Gorda. On the way back there’s a great little local restaurant called Hogs Heaven located high up on the hillside looking directly over Mosquito Island and North Sound. On a good day you can see as far as Anegada from this venue. It’s a great place to stop off and enjoy a local beer a Carib. And if you’re hungry you can dine on locally reared pork that is barbequed in front of you.
Why not visit Virgin Gorda onboard SY Pacific Wave, a Luxury Crewed Yacht Charter based in the BVI’s.