Virgin Island Saver

Virgin Island Saver

Virgin Island Saver

Plan your own pub or bar crawl on St. Thomas

Introduction:

First off, we take drinking seriously down here. We make no room and give no quarter to amateurs. Please leave the frat-boy drinking shenanigans at your community college campus. Here we like to imbibe continuously (heck they serve alcohol at parent-teacher conferences) but we know how to handle ourselves. Which is to say, we may make bad decisions but nothing that is going to ruin our’s or someone else’s life. Sound good? Great, let’s dive into the ultimate St. Thomas bar crawl experience – island style!

Setting the Scene:

Open containers are legal here. And there is no set “last call” at many establishments. If a place is rocking, they can go until the sun comes up. Can you hang?
There are 4 main bar clusters on St. Thomas: Havensight, Red Hook, Frenchtown and Charlotte Amalie.

There are a few ways to do this. You can spend your entire evening in just one area. Or you can plan on spanning the island trying to hit 2 or more of the clusters.

When planning your evening, you can drive yourself to said pub crawl. This is a poor (probably stupid) choice. If you insist on driving, you must have a designated driver.

Or, be responsible and safe and go with my personal favorite mode of transporation – an open-air taxi.
I have thrown a few parties in my day and the best ones are bar crawls with a taxi escorting us around the island. No worries, no danger, just a singular focus on getting hammered and having the best time possible.
It aint’ cheap, but it is worth it!

Planning Your Pub Crawl:

Charlotte Amalie Bars

downtown charlotte amalie in st thomas
A view from above the town of historic Charlotte Amalie.  This is your playground.

My favorite spot on island is downtown Charlotte Amalie. It’s a beautiful and historic area of the island. It’s also the best spot on island for a memorable pub crawl. Everything is easy to stumble to. If you are driving (again, please use a designated driver) you’ll want to park at the Fort Christian parking lot. They don’t charge for parking in the evening and you are only a 2-3 minute walk from the bars.

If you are taking a taxi, they can drop you off right in front of your first stop. At the end of the night give your taxi driver the name of your location and they’ll come right to you.

1. Greengos
Depending on the time of day you want to go on this adventure I would probably start at Greengos since they close after dinner. Start with a great meal and a margaritaville. Or skip dinner and go straight to the tequila – they have an insane selection.
Greengos has a very open atmosphere for partying inside and out.

2. Taphus
Beer. Fun atmosphere. A must do watering hole. The bar blends seamlessly with the sidewalk and street if things get too crowded.

3. Green House
A restaurant but also a great spot to partake. One of the first nights I lived on island involved me and their dance floor (just a spot where they moved tables). Awesome night.

4. Stone House Cafe
I’m a huge fan of this place. Food is excellent if you need to fill up before the drinking binge.

5. Pelican Shop
I’m not a cigar guy usually but had to go with a cigar and scotch the last time I was there. Has an outdoor space for smoking and drinking.

6. 13W
This might be where you want to end up.  Or start.  Or visit in the middle.  13W is a must-do.  They have a outdoor garden for enjoying your drinks (and late-night snacks) under the stars.  Or you can stay inside and soak up the history and ambiance of this historic building.

Frenchtown Bars

Ariel view of Frenchtown
Frenchtown from above. Saint Thomas, US Virgin Islands

Just around the corner from Charlotte Amalie is a funky old section called Frenchtown. Not much remains of the French culture/heritage other than the street names. That being said, it has a unique character and great bars.
Parking is always a challenge, but we agreed you are taking a taxi, no?

1. Twisted Cork
A great dinner spot. So maybe start your night here? They pride themselves on their wine selection and knowledge. But a full bar is available. I say, “Stay classy” and start your night with a nice meal and some wine at Twisted Cork.

2. Oceana
Another fancy restaurant, so dinner here isn’t a bad (cheap) idea. But I like Oceana as much for their outdoor ambiance. It is right on the water and sipping something hard while the Caribbean Sea breezes cool you, is pretty magical.
Dang, so far this bar crawl is kinda high-glass. Your next stop is going to get a bit grittier.

3. French Quarter Bistro
Possibly the most “corner bar-ish” on the island. Yes, they also serve food. Good food. But a relaxed bar atmosphere makes this a nice spot for a shot or drink.  If you are drinking hard, they won’t mind if you grab a table – just be sure to take good care of your server.

4. Pie Whole
Here’s what I would do. You have dinner around 6 pm. It’s now 9 pm. You should be feeling no pain by now. And you will eventually get hungry again. You should go ahead and call Pie Whole and place a pizza order for a 9:45 pm pickup. You’ll stop in, get a drink and walk out with your pizza.
Eat it outside at the restaurant or find a wall to sit on. It’s time to rest up. You’ll need to be ready for your final leg of this Frenchtown fete.

5. The Jungle Bar Night Club (this place doesn’t need or want a website)
This is where your night can go Category 5. This is where you may find yourself waking up on a beach the next morning with no memory and no shoes.
I will say no more. You will have to make the most of this last stop – you decide your own fate. But make sure to take pictures. I want to see.

Havensight and Yacht Haven Grande Bars

ariel view of havensight and yacht haven
The area next to the ships, on their starboard side, is Havensight, In front of the ships, or off their bow, is Yacht Haven.  As you can see they are right next to each other.

Down the waterfront from Charlotte Amalie is another group of intoxicating spots. These are 2 separate compounds (one is called Havensight and the other is Yacht Haven) but they within ear shot of each other.  Kinda like hearing someone having a quicky behind the dumpsters – you know its close but you can’t quite see anything (no idea what my analogy means other than it was inspired by a night out with my wife).

You can park at Yacht Haven or Port of Sale Mall if you are still unwilling to use good sense and hire a taxi driver.
But all the bars are within a few hundred feet of each other.
1. Agave (don’t be confused, there are 2 Agaves – one in Havensight and one in Red Hook)
Grab dinner or start off with a fancy drink first at Agave.

2. Dog House Pub
Right across the street from Agave is the ultimate island dive-bar-like experience. It’s not a dive, but it has all the good elements of a dive bar.

3. Tap and Still (again, there are 2 Taps – the other is in Red Hook)
Making your way back across the street is a shot and beer joint. You can also grab some good, reasonably priced food.  A local favorite.

4. Smoking Rooster
Another excellent shot and beer joint. And you can also grab some good, reasonably priced food here.  Another local favorite.

5. Rum Hut
They have swings at the bar. It is outdoors. You may end up spending the rest of the night here.

6. Box Bar
But this is where I’d want to end up. A big, expansive outdoor space. The seating is loose and so are the bartenders…with their pours.

Red Hook Bars

ariel view of Redhook in St. thomas. Loaded with bars and restaurants.
In this tiny space are over a dozen bars and restaurants.

This is the most concentrated section of bars and restaurants in St. Thomas. Lots to see and do and drink. I won’t bother naming all the spots.  Once you are parked or dropped off, you can wander and pop in at any place that grabs your fancy.

I will make one specific recommendation though. You should end your night at Caribbean Saloon. They have booths and air-conditioning. And bar food.  It is a sentimental favorite for me.  My wife and I, when we were younger and dating, would usually end our night here by crashing in a booth and ordering some food.

Oh, and maybe another spot I’ll recommend is a favorite of my parents (they are old but still know how to party) called Sunny Days.  They make boozy, ice-cream milkshakes.  Not sure where this should fit into your evening’s plans.  Their milkshakes are like a meal.  So you may be too stuffed to drink for a while after knocking one back.  But definitely a nice place to check out if you need to slow things down a bit. 🙂

Other than that, see where the night takes you!

How to Get Home Alive (without a stop at the hospital or local jail)

Ok, you’ve decided to take my advice. Here are a couple taxi drivers to reach out to:

Carol – 340-643-5837
Omar – 340-677-1500
Big Love – 340-201-7299

Also, if you do some searching online you can find lots of folks to get you home safely for your impending hangover.  Or, if you are staying at a resort, they will almost assuredly have a taxi stand.

*Important note about taxis: Make sure you get their number and discuss with them the time you’ll be expecting a pickup.  Some drivers don’t do late pick ups.  So if you think you’ll be going all night, you’ll want to ask them for another recommendation.  Make contact with that other driver and make sure they are willing to pick you up.  Some of these bars close at 3 and 4 am.  Finding a taxi isn’t easy that time of night unless you’ve already prearranged with one.

** We DON’T HAVE Uber or Lyft.  You must rely on the local taxis.

*** Final warning: Don’t drive yourself unless you have a designated driver.  Also, govern yourself like an adult.  Sure, get hammered if you want to, but don’t start drama or fights.  You are a stranger in a strange land.  Your vacation will go to crap quickly if you make poor decisions.

Now get your ass out there and party on!