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Things to do in the BVI

Dig Dirt, Curve Clay, Water Play

The concept of a stay-at-home holiday, or staycation, is increasingly common in many countries. Exploring one’s immediate environment, getting to know the myriad fascinating individuals within cooee of one’s house—what a joy.

But to many in the BVI, the idea is anathema. As soon as there’s a three-day weekend, many flee to Puerto Rico, St Maarten, St Barths or St. John to frolic with the fun folk. Those with young children, however, often prefer to stay close to home…the better to rest and recover whilst the kiddies play within earshot. Lucky are the family with grannies and ‘pops’ at hand – theirs is a well-rested nest.

Finding fun and creatively challenging things to do can be a good part of the stay-at-home challenge. Lounging at Long Bay or Josiah’s can’t be the only diversion open to the fun-loving family, can it?

Fortunately, there’s activities to rescue us from the word that should never be used when living or visiting a tropical island. On Tortola’s North Shore, Aragorn Dick-Read’s Good Moon Farm, an organic-agricultural endeavour carved out of steep hillside on Turnbull Estate, is an example of a fresh, productive and rewarding diversion that many will be unaware of.

Blessed with views for miles and spadefuls of charm, Good Moon is the perfect place to spend a day with interested older ‘tweens or teens with an aptitude for Nature, food, getting dirty or playing farmer.

Aragorn, who knows a thing or two about keeping the audience interested, has several programmes in place for the motivated resident, as well as residential opportunities for those wishing to become involved in a working organic farm.

Community Supported Agriculture is the international movement that promotes citizen interest in organic farming, and Good Moon is an enthusiastic member.


“People are most welcome to come and do work exchanges on a daily or weekly basis,” Aragorn told me recently. “We supply an amount of vegetables and other produce they can take home in exchange for their volunteering.” Spend a morning, a day or several days in and around the seedbeds—and in return, head home with baskets of arugula, lettuces and other edible treats.

Several of the aquatic summer schools, such as Sea Trek, Ocean Quest and Sail Caribbean, bring their students up for some fun volunteering activities.

An additional option for younger residents and visitors is the pottery programme hosted by Bamboushay at Nanny Cay. The programme is open to children aged 5-14 years and is held Monday through Friday from mid- June to September.

Sponsored by the BVI Department of Education, the one-week programmes run from 9-12 am, break for lunch and resume in the afternoon. Children will learn the fundamentals of clay work and the making and firing of ceramic objects. Adults and others who exceed the age limits mentioned may also attend evening classes held Monday to Friday.

To complete our tour of the elements—Earth, Air, Fire and Water—Dive BVI on Virgin Gorda has “local rates that people can take advantage of as well as two-week long youth camps in August, that kids 5-12 can be a part of while parents vacation in the BVI,” according to owner Casey McNutt.

These examples are by no means exhaustive. Call around your favourite dive shop, charter operator or sports club and see what they have on offer.

You never know, they might surprise you. In these times any business is good business, so look around – there is treasure trove of things to do in the BVI.

Erin Paviour-Smith

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