Road Town

Sugar cane and rum factories
Idyllic coves and beaches
Fantastic views from Skyworld

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Road Town/Tortola

Retracing the path of the pirates

A holiday in the British Virgin Islands in the Caribbean Sea is perfect for lovers of pirate movies. A visit to the island of Jost Van Dyke will give homage to this Dutch settler and pirate, who lived on the island in the 17th century.


As soon as you disembark from your MSC cruise ship in the port of Road Town, you will feel as if you are part of an adventure film. The capital of the British Virgin Islands, Road Town is situated in the largest bay of Tortola, the largest of the islands. To get a good look at all of the British Virgin Islands, you should have lunch at Skyworld, a panoramic restaurant on the highest point of the island, about 400 metres above sea level.

One of Tortola’s most charming beaches, Sugar Cane Bay is so called for the large sugar cane plantation located behind it. Bathing in these waters and laying on the crystalline sand while sea birds dive into the sea from great heights in search of sustenance is an incredible experience in itself. It can, however, be made even more interesting by a visit to the Callwood Rum Distillery, which houses the original structure of a sugar cane distillery, and a rum tasting.

The original heater at the distillery is still functional and the rum being produced is stored in old barrels. The Old Guard House, which is still intact, has been transformed into an art gallery and a souvenir shop. Every bay of these islands has something special: every year, the largest luxury yachts can be seen navigating the waters and docked in the bays of these islands, especially the charming Virgin Gorda Island, which is worth a visit. Here, the mangroves reach the sea and the shrewdest visitors bathe in The Bath, a bay where enormous volcanic masses stud the beach forming sinuous tunnels that must be followed in order to reach the sea. 

Must see places in Road Town

  • Cane Garden Bay

    Cane Garden Bay

  • Virgin Gorda

    Virgin Gorda

  • Tortola

    Tortola

Discover our excursions

8 results found

Limited number of guides in languages different from English. Should your language be not available the tour will be performed in English.
  • THE FOUR-BY-FOUR ISLAND TOUR

    ACTIVE & ADVENTURE

    TRT05

    For a chance to discover Tortola along regular roads as well as on paths that are well off the beaten track – giving way to incredible vistas of the neighbouring islands and of Tortola itself – join this entertaining and exciting tour in a four-by-four Landrover jeep. With viewpoints that are not normally accessible to the general public on the itinerary, it is advisable to bring your camera and make ample use of the various photo stops made along the way. As the tour takes you through Road Town, the capital of the British Virgin Islands, and along a trail that will reveal the natural splendour of the island’s unspoiled flora and fauna, you can get a real feel for these verdant surroundings. To give you some time to swim, sunbathe and enjoy a refreshing drink, a further stop will be made at a sandy beach before you return to the ship.Please note : as the tour involves travelling over rough terrain, it is not suitable for pregnant women and children under 5 years of age. Guests with back problems should bear the rugged nature of the tour in mind.
    • Drink included

    • Limited seats

    • May involve inclines, steps, uneven surfaces and/or extended periods of standing

      Difficulty Level
      Moderate

    • Duration
      3:30 h

  • VIRGIN ISLANDS’ SAILING AND SNORKELLING TOUR

    ACTIVE & ADVENTURE

    TRT06

    Tortola is separated from the other islands in the south of the archipelago making up the British Virgin Islands by a strait of water called the Sir Francis Drake Channel, which you will sail along after boarding a modern yacht at the waterfront in Road Town. Your jaunt will take you to one of the neighbouring islets, all of which are equally beautiful. After landing on either Norman, Cooper, Salt or Peter Island, you will have time to go for a leisurely swim or don your snorkelling gear to explore the vivid underwater world and coral reefs that are found in this region. The nearby caves are equally worth a visit as grand examples of nature’s architecture. As you sail around these historic waterways, you will retrace the steps of such notable seafarers as Christopher Columbus and Sir Francis Drake.Please note: Snorkelling equipment is provided.
    • Drink included

    • May involve inclines, steps, uneven surfaces and/or extended periods of standing

      Difficulty Level
      Moderate

    • Duration
      4 h

  • ISLAND PANORAMA & BEACH

    CITY TOUR

    TRT02

    Take a break from the ship and discover Tortola on this panoramic island tour – and have some time at the beach as well. After boarding a coach at the port, your tour begins with a drive through Road Town, after which you will travel along the scenic twisting coastal road to Pusser’s Landing at West End. A 15-minute stop will give you a chance to browse through the boutique-style shops before the tour continues along the dramatic north shoreline en route to Cane Garden Beach, passing through quaint fishing villages along the way. A local restaurant will serve you lunch and then you will have about 2 hours’ time to relax at the beach or go for a gentle swim. A complimentary beach chair will be provided for your comfort. Your tour then continues with a drive up Ridge Road, giving you a chance to enjoy gorgeous views of Tortola and the neighbouring Virgin Islands, both British and American. Photo stops will also be made along the way. Your tour ends with your return to the port and your ship.
    • Lunch or dinner included

    • Possibility of swimming

    • May involve inclines, steps, uneven surfaces and/or extended periods of standing

      Difficulty Level
      Moderate

    • Duration
      4 h

  • ISLAND SECRETS

    CITY TOUR

    TRT16

    The manifold charms of Tortola will reveal themselves on this island tour as you travel in comfort on a modern touring minibus, which will first take you along the southern coastal road from Road Town towards the island’s eastern tip. On arrival in East End, the site of the first settlement on Tortola, the minibus will then begin its ascent into the hills. To capture the many stunning views of the sea and adjacent islands, several photo stops will be made on your way to Skyworld, the highest point on the island that still permits vehicle access. You can then enjoy a refreshing complimentary drink, browse in the small souvenir shop and get your fill of the dramatic vistas of the surrounding islands. More lovely views will come into sight as you continue along the Ridge Road for a while, after which the minibus will make its way down to the northern shore and take you through several small fishing villages. After passing the famous Bombas Shack – home of the island’s legendary Full Moon Parties – you will cross the island at its narrowest point before arriving at Pusser’s Landing at the West End. You will have some time to go shopping in the pretty little marina and explore the spice and crafts shops. To end the tour, the minibus takes you back to the port and your ship.Please note: the tour involves a minimal amount of walking and there are twelve steps at Skyworld if you want to access the viewpoint.
    • Drink included

    • May involve a limited quantity of steps, uneven surfaces and/or periods of standing

      Difficulty Level
      Easy

    • Duration
      3 h

  • TORTOLA HIGHLIGHTS

    CITY TOUR

    TRT03

    Starting in Road Town, the capital of the British Virgin Islands, a scenic tour of Tortola awaits you from the breezy comfort of an open-air coach. Travelling up to Fort Hill along Ridge Road, you will pass through the charming districts of Long Trench and Fahie Hill as you head for your destination: Skyworld, a popular restaurant and beauty spot situated at 400 m above sea level. There will be time to shop for a memento and gaze out to the islands from the observation deck, after which the tour continues on to the beautiful Cane Garden Bay. A stop will be made here for you to enjoy the beach and go for a swim in the invitingly warm water. Your return journey to the port and your ship will take you along Tortola’s pretty northern shore over Zion Hill and down Sir Francis Drake Highway back to Road Town.Please note: the price of the tour includes a complimentary beach chair; parasols are available for hire, food and drink for purchase.
    • Drink included

    • Possibility of swimming

    • May involve a limited quantity of steps, uneven surfaces and/or periods of standing

      Difficulty Level
      Easy

    • Duration
      4 h

  • MINI VIRGIN ISLANDS’ CRUISE

    SCENIC ROUTE

    TRT09

    This tour is a great way to extend your cruise experience away from the big ship by boarding a pleasure boat at the marina, only a short coach ride away from the port, for a trip around the breathtaking Virgin Islands’ archipelago. Fabulous views of Tortola’s southern coast as well as Salt, Peter and Norman islands await you as the boat slices through the Caribbean Sea. The route will also take you past St. John’s island, 60% of which is covered by the Virgin Islands National Park, and a number of uninhabited islands before reaching Soper’s Hole, the landing site of the first Europeans. There will be time for you to explore the boutiques and gift shops before boarding an open-sided coach for a drive along the scenic northern coast up to Ridge Road. A photo stop will be made to capture the amazing view, after which you will return to your ship.
    • Drink included

    • May involve inclines, steps, uneven surfaces and/or extended periods of standing

      Difficulty Level
      Moderate

    • Duration
      4 h

  • "THE BATHS" BEACH AREA ON VIRGIN GORDA

    SEA & SUN

    TRT01

    Swap your ship for a boat and first enjoy a 40-minute jaunt to Spanish Town on Virgin Gorda before hopping on an open, safari-style coach for a further five-minute ride to the stunning beach area known as "The Baths". Amid the natural beauty of this special place, you can swim, snorkel or simply explore the surroundings. One of the British Virgin Islands’ most popular sights, "The Baths" are an unusual geological formation consisting of huge, sea-sculpted granite boulders that line the beach and form tidal pools, tunnels, caves, arches and scenic grottoes. After some time to shop for a souvenir, you will rejoin the coach. As a final touch, a complimentary drink will be served before you re-board the launch.Please note: You are recommended to be in good physical condition, wear comfortable walking shoes (uneven ground) and take swimwear, high-factor sunscreen, a towel and a hat. Not suitable for guests in wheelchairs, baby strollers.
    • Drink included

    • Possibility of swimming

    • May involve inclines, steps, uneven surfaces and/or extended periods of standing

      Difficulty Level
      Moderate

    • Duration
      4 h

  • BEACH TRANSFER

    SEA & SUN

    TRT15

    After boarding a coach at the port, your beach excursion begins with a drive from Road Town along the scenic shoreline and on to one of the of attractive beaches. It is at one of these – a generous stretch of gently curving white sand – that you can then spend about 3 hours' time enjoying your "virgin" beach experience. A comfortable beach chair is provided free of charge, while the beach bar offers additional soft drinks, water and light snacks for purchase. Please note: outer clothes must be worn over swimwear. Nudity on beaches or topless for ladies is prohibited by BVI law. Complimentary beach chairs are provided. An alternative beach location may be used due to weather conditions.
    • Snack included

    • May involve a limited quantity of steps, uneven surfaces and/or periods of standing

      Difficulty Level
      Easy

    • Duration
      4 h

The excursions in the programme are intended to provide MSC Guests with an idea of the different tours that can be arranged in each port of call; this programme is merely a guide and confirmation of each excursion and its description and prices will be made during your cruise. 
Shore excursions programs and itineraries may vary depending on local conditions and/or any unforeseen events in relation to the timing on the day of the tour.
 
Some excursions are very popular and therefore availability cannot always be guaranteed, it is advisable to book in advance to avoid disappointment. The guides are guaranteed in English. Only for South America cruises, the guides are guaranteed in Brazilian Portuguese. Narration in other languages depends on the availability of guides. Please note that the final language of the tour will be confirmed on board during the cruise.

British Virgin Islands

The gentle lull of the sea
The gentle lull of the sea

In British Virgin Islands, phone booths are red like in London, you drive on the left side of the road and the typical local drink is with Pusser, the favourite rum of the officers of the Royal Navy.

If you set foot on land while on a cruise to the British Virgin Islands you will find plenty of discotheques but also pubs, steel bands and colonial homes with verandas facing the turquoise sea. The British Virgin Islands – about a hundred little islands scattered in the mythical Francis Drake Channel – are above all one of the favourite destinations of sailing enthusiasts, and often host regattas in the seas surrounding the islands.

A few minutes by motorboat from Tortola, the main island, will take you to Salt Island where the Rhone, the postal ship that sunk in1867 during a sea-storm and defined by Jacques Cousteau as one of the most spectacular wreckages in the world, setting of the underwater scenes in the film Abyss with Jacqueline Bisset. Up to the month of November, instead, you can see the humpback whales swimming past Virgin Gorda, singing their love songs.

But a real treat is an excursion to Anegada, a narrow stretch of the finest white sand, 20 km in length and less than 3 in width, surrounded by the coral reef, a nature reserve, where boats have often run aground, as one can gather from the almost three hundred wreckages found at the bottom of the sea which attract skin divers from around the world.