Introduction To Tortola

Land of Turtle Doves as it is called is the largest of the British Virgin Islands.

RoadTown – the capital has a scenic harbor which is usually filled with yachts.

Cuisine in Tortola is excellent with many choices, with such dishes as fresh lobster, conch, turtle etc.

Shoppers will find bargains in perfume, jewellery and Wedgewood china as well as many local products such as silk screened fabrics. The rest of the BVI are in easy reach should you wish to explore further.

History of Tortola

Tortola is a part of the British Virgin Islands and is governed by a British appointed leader. The first inhabitants of the island were the Ciboney and later the Arawaks and Caribs.

In 1493 Columbus discovered the islands and named them after the ll,000 virgins of St.Ursula. Famous pirates like Bluebeard and Capt. Kidd were involved in the plunder of Spanish galleons – in fact Tortola has a romantic history of its own. Sugar production dominated the island until the 1800’s.

Tortola’s Natural Attractions

Tortola is a quiet unspoilt paradise with much natural beauty. Beautiful sandy beaches abound and there is an area of original rain forest at Mount Sage National Park. Road Town (the capital) is a haven for many yachts. Tortola can also be used for a jumping off point for visiting some of the other BVI for instance Virgin Gourda. Tortola is known as the “Land of Turtles Doves”.

Activities Available On The Island

Beach related activities are popular. The Botanic Gardens in Road Town are well worth a visit, as well as an expedition to the Mount Sage National Park.

Museums, old forts and sugar mills provide an insight into Tortola’s past. Trips by ferry to some of the other BVI is another opportunity to explore further.

Shopping in Road Town can be an exciting experience with offerings from Tortolan craftsman or duty-free shopping for such delights as perfume, jewellery and Wedgewood china.

Things To Do On Tortola

Moods: Gourmet,Sightseeing,sailing


Seafood is delightful in Tortola. Fresh lobster is served in many of the restaurants, also popular is conch and turtle. Great views add to the ambience of the meal. Visit an authentic English Pub which serves its famous “Painkiller” and “Pussers Rum” ( an old navy drink)


Trips by ferry to some of the neighbouring British Virgin islands is popular. Chartered tours around the island can be arranged by one of the sailing companies. The best way to get around Tortola is to hire a taxi and have a great tour guide in your taxi driver who will show you all the beautiful sights. Since Tortola is a small island there are no large tour buses. Car rentals and exploring the island yourself is another option.


Tortola is quiet and unspoilt and here one can enjoy the wonders of nature. The delightful beaches and natural harbors make it popular with those who are seeking rest and relaxation in an unspoilt atmosphere. There is also an area of original rain forest at Mount Sage National Park and an excellent Botanical Gardens.


Many visitors choose to get married in Tortola. Weddings can be arranged and the romantic hideaways make it perfect for honeymooners. Tortola is very laid back, very relaxing, very romantic.


Most visitors enjoy the laid-back atmosphere of Tortola and enjoy relaxing on the beaches and “doing nothing! But there are other activities such as water sports, a visit to the Mount Sage National Park and the beautiful Botanic Gardens. For those who enjoy shopping many great bargains in Wedgewood china and perfumes are available in the capital Roadtown. You can also head off to St. Thomas for a game of golf if you desire.


Local pubs and restaurants and the hotels provide after dinner entertainment.


Other Islands

Rogues Guide to Islands of the Caribbean

Discover more islands of the Caribbean here: