THE WORLD’S MOST BEAUTIFUL BEACH? MAGENS BAY PICTORIAL

A spun sugar strip of sand that curves in an elegant, smiley horse shoe shape over a full three quarters of a mile, Magens Bay has been regularly rated by National Geographic as one of the ten best beaches anywhere in the world. Even in the beach nirvana that is the Eastern Caribbean, Magens Bay is something truly spectacular.

It sprawls across the north west shore of St. Thomas, the largest of the US Virgin Islands, and sits at the head of a deep water bay that was once allegedly used as an anchorage by Sir Francis Drake. Normally blessed with benign weather, the island is one of the mainstays of the Caribbean cruise circuit.

As part of a protected national park, the beach also backs onto an area of natural mangrove swamps. The beach area itself provides a bar and restaurant hut, tables and chairs, beach rentals including kayaks, sailboats and deck chairs, lifeguards on duty, and restrooms at regular intervals.

But it is the sheer scale, sweep, and haunting beauty of the vast, beautiful expanse of beach that gives Magens Bay its unique, almost mystical cachet. Take a look at these photos below, and you’ll see why it remains so perennially alluring.

The approach from the parking lot

The approach from the parking lot

Centre of the beach
Centre of the beach

The main sweep, looking to the right

The main sweep, looking to the right

The colours are intoxicating...

The colours are intoxicating…

Looking towards the less crowded, quieter end

Looking towards the less crowded, quieter end

The waters are gorgeous

The waters are gorgeous

Another view of the quiet end, later in the day. See how the play of light has changed the colours

Another view of the quiet end, later in the day. See how the play of light has changed the colours

Beautiful....

Beautiful….

Big, big, sky......

Big, big, sky……

Rock formations dominate both edges of the bay

Rock formations dominate both edges of the bay

Part of the mangrove area that backs onto the quiet part of the beach

Part of the mangrove area that backs onto the quiet part of the beach

You can really see the entire graceful sweep of Magens Bay in this shot

You can really see the entire graceful sweep of Magens Bay in this shot

Rocks, shadow and sand

Rocks, shadow and sand

Another 'big blue' shot....

Another ‘big blue’ shot….

Early afternoon, and the light has changed again....

Early afternoon, and the light has changed again….

The rocky area at the top of the bay

The rocky area at the top of the bay

Wow. Just wow.

Wow. Just wow.

One last, lingering glance....

One last, lingering glance….