Virgin Gorda peak, baths & mines
The Baths are the most well-known attraction on Virgin Gorda. These giant boulders brought to the surface by volcanic eruptions form a magnificent grotto and tranquil pools. Here one can explore hidden areas brightened by shafts of light, snorkel in the caves and coral ledges, and swim and sunbathe on the white sand beaches. To avoid the crowds, it is best to arrive here early in the morning or late afternoon.
The Copper Mines, on the island’s rugged southwestern tip, were constructed in 1837 by Cornish miners from England, and mined in two separate periods over the next 25 years. Today, visitors can revel in the site’s beauty while musing over the numerous rock specimens (including malachite, quartz, and molybdenite) near the boiling house. Be cautious, though, as there are many loose rocks as well as some abandoned 60-foot-deep prospecting shafts near the top of the hill, above the stack.
Gorda Peak, the island’s highest point at 1,370 feet, is also a National Park with one of the best dry forests in the Caribbean. The park is home to some of the rarest plants in the Virgin Islands, including six species of native Orchids, as well as a diverse animal population including tree frogs, snakes, soldier crabs, birds, and the world’s smallest lizard, the Virgin Gorda gecko. The lookout tower at the peak offers a commanding view of the Virgin Islands.