Spanish Town & The Valley Tourist Attractions
The commercial center of Virgin Gorda, Spanish Town likely gets its name from a corruption of the English word "penniston", a blue woollen textile used to make slave clothing on the island. Too small to be an actual town, Spanish Town is a settlement with most of the island's administrative buildings and businesses stretching along Lee Road which skirts the harbor.Most of the development in Spanish Town took place in the 1960s, and development stretched from the center of the harbor outwards. The area of the Valley surrounds Spanish Town, however it is impossible to identify where Spanish Town ends and the Valley begins. The settlement and surrounding areas offer various natural attractions along with low-key nightlife and interesting shopping and dining.
The Baths National Park
The Virgin Gorda Baths are a busy anchorage and one of the British Virgin Island's most famous landmarks. The area is littered with randomly placed giant granite boulders, creating sea pools and grottoes that are perfect for snorkelling and exploring. The boulders can reach 40ft/12m in diameter and their origins are unknown, however it is speculated that they are probably the result of weathering of softer rock, leaving pockets of very hard granite exposed. At one point, the boulders form a sand-bottomed cave that is one of the most photographed areas in the British Virgin Islands. The area was declared a national park in 1990, and measures are being taken to protect The Baths from overuse and crowding.
Spring Bay National Park
A gift from the Rockefellers in the 1960's, Spring Bay was declared a national park in 1974. The recreation area encompasses a 5.5ac/2.3ha of sandy beach featuring scattered granite boulders. Fishing is not permitted, so there are many fish in the area providing good snorkelling opportunities. The enclosure of boulders creates a natural pool called The Crawl that was formerly used by fishermen to hold fish and turtles until they were ready to be used. Within the park are benches, picnic areas and swings.
Devil's Bay National Park
Devil's Bay was a gift to the British Virgin Islands from the Rockefellers in the 1960's and was then designated as a national park. It is comprised of 20ac/8ha of land on the southernmost tip of Virgin Gorda featuring large granite boulders on the coast and a secluded crescent-shaped beach. The powdery white-sand beach offers great snorkelling opportunities. Further down the shore is a smaller, more private beach amid many large boulders.
Copper Mine National Park
Today a national park and protected area, Copper Mine National Park features ruins of a mine worked by Cornish miners between 1838 and 1867. The impressive ruins of the boiler house, chimney, cistern and mine shaft house are found at Virgin Gorda's most rugged coastline and hillside.
Savannah Bay Beach
Savannah Bay is sheltered by a barrier reef that protects the beach from the northerly swells of the Atlantic Ocean. The beach features 1mi/1.6km of white sand and is quite secluded, making it a great place for solitary walks along the shore and various water activities.
Little Fort National Park
Only the crumbling walls remain of the Spanish stronghold at the Little Fort National Park. The main attraction here is a 36ac/15ha wildlife sanctuary, featuring silk cotton trees and wild orchids.
Trunk Bay Beach
Virgin Gorda Easter Festival
The Virgin Gorda Easter Festival is a carnival event held on the four days preceding Christian Lent. Spanish Town comes alive with calypso music, scratch bands, vendors and food fairs, as well as numerous parades.
Little Dix Bay Beach
Taylors Bay Beach
Virgin Gorda Airport
Virgin Gorda Airport receives a few commuter flights each day.