Bleached coral protrudes from the sandy blanket padding the ocean floor of Virgin Gorda's famous ?Baths', brightened by darting schools of color and activity. Here, the warm water is home to a rainbow of sea-life. Preoccupied with the world beneath, it is easy to get happily lost in the maze of rocks and pools that are home to this thriving undersea community.
Most visitors anchor just offshore and enjoy the day at the baths and small beaches, but even hunger beckons eventually. Follow the trail from the Baths that winds through rock tunnels and foliage before emerging on the island's high spot for an afternoon snack, pool-side cocktail and views of the shiny sea.
Head southwest on the island for more isolation, stopping to investigate the ruins of an old copper mine at Copper Mine National Park before meandering along the trail leading to Devil's Bay, also a national park, for more snorkeling opportunities and sunsets to write home about.
If you're in Virgin Gorda without your own set of sails, book yourself a seat aboard a schooner, sloop or speed-boat embarking from Yacht Harbor and test out your sea legs.
Virgin Gorda is only 8 miles east of Tortola.