Reef Bay Hikes

Join National Park Service Rangers for the premier hiking experience

in Virgin Islands National Park! 

  • Reservations and purchase of transportation vouchers for the Reef Bay and L'Esperance hikes, led by Virgin Islands National Park Service Rangers, is done through the Friends of the Park Store located street-side in Mongoose Junction. Vouchers may also be purchased by phone at 340-779-8700.
  • Vouchers for transportation will need to be purchased at the time of reservation for $30 per hiker.
  • The maximum number of hikers on any given trip will be 31. We will maintain a waiting list once hikes are filled up and we will notify those on the list as vacancies occur.
  • Vouchers for the Reef Bay Hike will be available on the day of the hike on a space available basis; but this is a very popular activity and advance reservations are highly recommended.
  • Inquiries about reservations for the hike at the NPS Visitor Center will be directed by counter staff to the Friends of the Park Store across the street.
  • The schedule for trips will be as follows:

January - April: 4 trips/week (Mon, Tue, Thur, & Fri)
- May - August: 3 trips/week (Mon, Thur, & Fri)
- August - October: 2 trips/week (Mon & Thur)
- November - December: 3 trips/week (Mon, Thur, & Fri)
 The frequency of trips may be modified by the NPS based on demand or other conditions.

  • The taxi to the Reef Bay trail head will depart from the NPS Visitors Center promptly at 9:30am and the boat will return to Cruz Bay between 2:00pm - 3:00 pm.
  • Vouchers must be picked up from the Friends of the Park Store in Mongoose Junction, and can be done in advance. If you must pick up your voucher on the day of the hike, please do so at 9:00 am, when the store opens.
  • You must have your vouchers in hand to board the taxi at 9:30am from the NPS Visitors Center and to board the boat at Reef Bay.

Please read the following message from the VI NPS Rangers with important hike info:

Hello Hikers!

We are pleased that you are interested in participating in the Virgin Islands National Park Service Ranger-led hikes of the Reef Bay and L’Esperance Trails. 

Please take a moment to look over this guide explaining hike details and what the Rangers would like you to know before you go!

                Please note these are not “easy” hikes.  While most visitors hike them without problem, the following information will let YOU decide if this activity fits your interest and abilities.  These back country trails are steep and rocky and you need good balance and a sure foot.  The trails can be slippery, even when dry.  Total hiking distance will be approximately 3 miles.  Please take a moment to evaluate in advance if this hike is appropriate for you as there are NO REFUNDS for any reason within 24 hours of the hike (due to contractual agreements with the transporters).

You will be with a group (likely of about 30 people).  It is important for the Rangers, and your own safety, that the group stays together for the duration of the tour.  Please, stay with the group and even help your fellow hikers if needed.  If you prefer to move at a slower pace, feel free to talk to your Ranger, before the hike if possible, so that we may try to accommodate you.

While the trails are mostly downhill, there are short strenuous uphill sections that demand agility and strength, and possibly the use of your hands and feet for stability.  The hike is done at a reasonably steady pace with occasional stops for the Ranger to interpret and explain the historical and natural features of the trail.  The L’Esperance trail has more uphill sections than the Reef Bay trail.  It also has less shade coverage so prepare for longer stretches of open sun.

There will be different types of bugs and insects on the hike.  Most are harmless and will likely be identified by your Ranger; however, there will be both bees and wasps on the trail. If you have severe allergic reactions to bee stings (anaphylaxis), YOU NEED to bring Epinephrine medication with you AND to notify your Ranger of your allergies prior to departure.

 Quick Check List

  • Sturdy footwear
  • Water (2 liters per person)
  • Sunscreen
  • Bug Repellant
  • Allergy Medications
  • Parking Permit?  (if parking at the VC-you need one! Get it at the front desk)
A wonderful video of Reef Bay Trail during on of our SKIP (School Kids in the Park) Program.

SKIP Program at Reef Bay from Friends of VI National Park on Vimeo.

Cancellation policies are as follows:

  • If the hike is cancelled by the NPS, voucher-holders will receive a full refund or may rebook the trip at no additional charge
  • If a reservation is cancelled more than 24 hours before the start of the hike you may rebook the hike at no additional charge, or receive a full refund
  • There are no refunds for "no-shows” or cancellations for any reason (unless cancelled by NPS) within 24 hours of the trip. (i.e., after 9:30 am, the day before your scheduled hike).
  • Call the Friends of the Park Store at 340-779-8700 for last minute questions or to cancel your reservation.
   

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