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St Croix, protected Buck Island and its northern steep continental shelf offer some of the best conditions for diving and snorkeling.

Inserted/Added by: lars, © Author: Lars Hemel

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The largest island of the Virgin Island is St Croix, a laid back tropical paradise with green rolling hills, spectacular bays and a very vivid underwater marine world. The historic town Christiansted in the center of Saint Croix was founded in 1734 as part of the Danish West Indies. The beautiful houses have thick walls made out of coral blocks to keep the houses cool all year long. The second largest town is Frederiksted in the west (named after Fort Frederik) with a picturesque waterfront, wide streets bordered with rolling hills and rainforest. Frederiksted Pier is a popular muck and night dive to spot species such as nudibranch, cleaner gobies, flying gurnards, frogfish and sea horses. South of Frederiksted you can dive the reefs near the Sandy Point National Wildlife Refuge and spot birds at the Westend Saltponds.

The St. Croix Heritage Trail is a great car drive that allows you to see many of its historic and archeological sites. You can see ruins of the Cruzan rum factory, former sugar cane plantations, Fort Christiansvaern and structures remaining from the Danish West India Company. The most eastern point of St Croix is named Point Udall and is considered to be the spot where Columbus landed on his second voyage to the new world. It is also the most eastern point of the United States of America.

St Croix is a very diverse island with dry cactus fields in the east, fertile grasslands in the center and steep mountains in the west (Blue Mountain). The north offers quiet coves, white beaches, pristine bays and plenty of unique diving and snorkeling spots. It is actually one large coral reef, reaching depths of 5000 feet less than two miles offshore, offering plenty of drop-offs. Buck Island Reef National Monument, two miles north of Solitude Bay, is scuba diving at its best with many turtle hatching grounds. Its more than one mile long coral reef is rich in marine life, colorful and offers preplanned trails especially for snorkelers. Other popular dive sites are Cane Bay, the steep canyons at Salt River Bay and the Butler Bay wrecks.

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