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Overview

Wild, mountainous and rimmed with sparkling white beaches and sheltered bays, Virgin Gorda, the fat virgin, is an oasis of adventure, relaxation and sun-shiny bliss. With a history decorated by marauding pirates, once-thriving sugarcane plantations and a generous copper mine, the island was virtually untouched by tourism until the 1960s, when Laurence Rockefeller built the extravagant Little Dix Bay resort. Other resorts followed, and while vacationers now flock to the island, it retains the feel of a sleepy outpost, surrounded by spectacular beauty. Today, sailors slip by on the glassy waters, mooring briefly for provisions or to enjoy ...

Wild, mountainous and rimmed with sparkling white beaches and sheltered bays, Virgin Gorda, the fat virgin, is an oasis of adventure, relaxation and sun-shiny bliss. With a history decorated by marauding pirates, once-thriving sugarcane plantations and a generous copper mine, the island was virtually untouched by tourism until the 1960s, when Laurence Rockefeller built the extravagant Little Dix Bay resort. Other resorts followed, and while vacationers now flock to the island, it retains the feel of a sleepy outpost, surrounded by spectacular beauty. Today, sailors slip by on the glassy waters, mooring briefly for provisions or to enjoy solitude while beachcombing for shells. Hikers climb the Virgin Gorda Peak to sip stunning views of the surrounding archipelago. Day-trippers from surrounding islands come in droves to swim among the giant boulders whose underwater grottoes provide some of the world's best snorkeling.

Debra Landau
About the Expert

Debra Landau has written eight Lonely Planet guidebooks, including books on the USA, Caribbean, and the South.

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Debra Landau for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

  • Location: Virgin Gorda is the third-largest (after Tortola and Anegada) and second most populous of the British Virgin Islands. Located in the Caribbean Sea west of Tortola.
  • Language: English
  • Currency: US Dollar
  • Research: Virgin Gorda | High Beam
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Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    Peak season is December to February, but the shoulder seasons (October, November, April and May) are great for travel deals.