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Once you decide that the pristine beauty of St. John is for you, you'll have to put a little effort into getting there because St. John doesn't have an airport. Almost everyone flies into the St. Thomas airport and takes a ferry over to Cruz Bay, St. John. It's best to arrive in St. Thomas early enough so you can enjoy the views on your trip across Pillsbury Sound.
Red Hook Passenger Ferry The shortest ferry ride leaves from Red Hook, on the east tip of St. Thomas, and takes about 15-20 minutes to reach Cruz Bay, St. John. Ferries run at 6:30 AM, 7:30 AM, and then hourly from 8 AM to midnight. The cost is $6 one-way and $2.50 per piece of luggage. Return ferries leave Cruz Bay hourly from 6 AM to 11 PM.
Getting to the Red Hook Ferry The easiest way to get to the ferry from the St. Thomas airport is to take a cab, which will take at least a half hour and cost about $20. You could take a cheaper cab ride ($5) into the main town of Charlotte Amalie and catch the Vitran bus that leaves hourly to Red Hook for $1.
Charlotte Amalie Passenger Ferry
You can also take a 45 minute ferry ride from Charlotte Amalie (waterfront area in the center of town) directly to Cruz Bay for $13 one-way and $4 per bag. The ferries leave at 9 AM, 11 AM, 1 PM, 3 PM, and 5:30 PM daily. Ferries returning from St. John leave at 7:15 AM, 9:15 AM, 11:15 AM, 1:15 PM, and 3:45 PM. The schedules can change, so, to be safe, check the current schedule on at http://www.vinow.com/general_usvi/int...
Private Water Taxi You can take a private boat to St. John (or to other islands) from
Dohm's Power Boat which leaves from Red Hook. Plan to pay about $20-25 per person.
Car Ferry from Red Hook
If you decide to rent a car in St. Thomas consider that jeeps are by far the best way to see St. John. Car rentals in St. Thomas are a good idea if you want to tour St. Thomas before you go to St. John and if you get a better rental rate. Ferries that carry cars leave from Red Hook about every hour. Check two companies -
Republic and Boynes - for schedules. Expect to pay about $42-52 round trip.
Ferries to other islands
There are ferries from Cruz Bay to Tortola, Virgin Gorda and Jost Van Dyke, BVI. You will need your passport to clear customs. Check the ferry schedules for days and times - they may not run daily. You can also get to other islands from the Red Hook or Charlotte Amalie ferries as well.
Once you arrive on St. John you can stop by the tourist office to pick up a variety of information on the island. It's located near the ferry dock in the park next to the Post Office (phone: (340) 776-6450). Then, you can take a cab or open air bus to your destination.