Comprised of 60 islands and cays, dotted around 59 square
miles, in the Caribbean, about 80 kilo meters 960 miles east
of Puerto Rico, north of the Leeward Islands, and adjacent to
the U.S. Virgin Islands; principal islands are Tortola, Virgin
Gorda, Anegada and Jost Van Dyke. Among the most frequently
visited of the BVI's handful of inhabited islands are Tortola,
Virgin Gorda, Beef Island, Anegada, Jost Van Dyke, Peter,
Mosquito, and Guana Islands.
The British Virgin Islands are among the world's most
prestine areas. Of the 60 British islands, 16 are inhabited.
The population of all the islands is around 17,000. Tortola is
the largest island with an area of 21 square miles. The other
larger islands are Anegada -15 square miles, Virgin Gorda - 8
square miles, Jost Van Dyke - 3 square miles. Smaller islands
include Great Tobago, Peter, Cooper, Norman, Guana, Beef,
Great Thatch and Marina Cay.
Scuba diving is popular around sunken reefs and wrecks.
Among wreck dives, RMS Rhone is reckoned to be the best in the
Western hemisphere. Once the pride of the Royal Mail Steam
Packet Company, the Rhone hit Salt Island in a storm in 1867
and sank. It is now an official marine park.
Snorkelers should visit the four caves at Norman Island,
said to be the setting for Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure
Island. Windsurfers benefit from steady winds and calm
Throughout the islands, beaches are splendid and the beach
bars exceptional. Gourmet cuisine can be found, along with
background music from steel pans and guitars. But don’t expect
early-hours entertainment – except at summer festival time,
when parades and parties rule Tortola. The beaches of The
British Virgin Islands are peppered throughout the entire
archipelago of 60 islands and cays. Some we have discovered
and others are just waiting to be. Not only do they possess
such natural beauty and character not seen elsewhere in the
world, but also allow you to be a part of a captivating
marriage of the Caribbean Sea and the northern Atlantic
Tortola, the largest island and the primary center of
Caribbean yachting...Virgin Gorda, an isle of natural wonders
and home to The Baths...Picturesque Jost Van Dyke - The
Caribbean as it used to be...Isolated Anegada, a coral atoll
with miles of deserted Caribbean beaches.
Most people fly into the US Virgin Island of St. Thomas,
which has a large international airport. The trip is
thereafter with taxi to the harbor in the capital called
Charlotte Amailie (approx. 3 miles). There are excellent large
fast-ferry connections to Road Town in Tortula (BVI) and the
trip takes about 45-50 minutes and costs approx. $25 per
Foods Worth Trying
BVI has all the regular food that is found in the US and
Europe, but also a great variety of local food that often
costs less (i.e. roti) and has much more flavors. Here is a
list of some of the foods worth trying when in the BVIs:
Roti: A flavourful East Indian flat bread filled with a
meat or vegetables.
Paté: Not to be mistaken with liver pâté, this West Indian
dish is a baked/grilled style pita bread filled with spiced
meat, seafood or vegetables.
Fungi: No way related to the mushroom, this delight is made
from cornmeal and okra and is usually served with seafood
dishes. Very similar to Italian polenta.
Whelks: A seasonal seafood delicacy that is quite similar
Conch: Another seasonal seafood delicacy - try it in
fritters, paté, soup, salad, or as a main entrée.
Anegada Lobster: The ultimate in BVI seafood delicacy -
reputed to be the best in the Caribbean.
Fresh local fruits: Most of which are seasonal like
soursop, papaya, mango, pineapple, guava, sugar apple, passion
fruit and tamarind.
(Content source: http://www.cruiselinefans.com/tortola/8230-british-virgin-islands-overview-tortola.html)