Paradise! Oh, tranquil Paradise! White sandy beaches; year round tropical weather; beautiful, breathtaking sunsets and sceneries; warm, hospitable people; delicious, tasty cuisine; and a rich, harmonious mix of cultural and native heritage are all part of what make St. Croix an inviting place to have a wedding. A truly remarkable place filled with history, beauty, and splendor! When you think of getting married, there are so many reasons why you should make it happen on St. Croix.
St. Croix (Ay-Ay, its native name) is one of the three islands that make up the U.S. Virgin Islands. These islands have been colonized by seven different countries (Spain, Great Britain, the Netherlands, France, Knights of Malta, Denmark, and now the United States)1. St. Croix is the largest of the three unincorporated territories of the United States, surrounded by the deep blue waters of the Caribbean Sea. It is said that Christopher Columbus came to the islands on or about 1493 and landed on Salt River, one of St. Croix major landmarks. St. Croix rich history dates back over 500 years to early inhabitants of the island, known as the Pre-Taino people (Arawaks)2.
Apart from the other two islands, St. Croix has its own distinctive history, architecture, natural reserves, exotic landscapes, places to go, and things to do. Of particular significance to the island’s history are the historical plantations that are visible remnants of the sugar cane industry and plantation life that drove the economy hundreds of years ago. They include those in Estates Butler’s Bay, Sprat Hall, Little La Grange, Whim (now Whim Plantation Museum), Bethlehem, Annaly, La Reine, Rust-up-Twist, Sion Farm, Slob, Cane Garden, Bonne Esperance, Richmond, and Orange Grove3. There are also the Buck Island Reef National Monument, a 176-acre island that is a marine protected area with surrounding coral reef ecosystem for the National Park System; Christiansted National Historic District, which includes five preserved historical structures, beginning with Fort Christianvaern; Fort Frederik, which houses the Fort Frederik Museum; Salt River Bay National Historical Park, which is another preserve of the tropical ecosystem with beautiful archeological ruins, the largest mango forest, coral reefs, and a submarine canyon; Sandy Point National Wildlife Refuge with two miles of continuous pearly white sandy beach, a nesting ground for leatherback sea turtles, salt ponds, mangrove, and a variety of birds; and Point Udall, where you’ll find the Millennium Monument (a sundial) that was built as part of the 2000 New Year’s celebration marking the direction of the first U.S. sunrise of the year4.
You will also find other major attractions like Emancipation Park, the Customs House, Victoria House, the Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, St. Paul’s Anglican Church, St. Patrick’s Roman Catholic Church, the Frederiksted Pier, St. George Village Botanical Garden, the lush Rain Forest, and Cruzan Rum. Numerous local holidays, celebrations, and events play a cultural part of the island peoples’ heritage and include the annual Crucian Christmas Festival, Agriculture and Food Fair, Three King’s Day, Transfer Day, Emancipation Day, and David Hamilton Jackson Day. You will not be able to resist over 15 beautiful, sandy beaches on the island, including the most popular Dorsche, Rainbow, Cane Bay, Shoys, Cramer Park, and Ha Penny beaches.
It is no lie that your stay on St. Croix will also be marked with rich, tasty, and exquisite cuisine and dining facilities, as well as music experiences you will never forget. There is so much to choose from with the vast array of local foods and drinks; the local foods being a mix of Caribbean, Creole, African, and European influences. You will have a fairly comprehensive variety to choose from, including mouth-watering baked goods and desserts. Stanley and the Ten Sleepless Knights, a group of childhood friends from the 70’s, will keep you grooving with their Wild Indian, Cariso, Quadrille, and Quelbe music.
It does not matter what your budget may be, your wedding can be as exotic or extravagant as you would like. You can have your wedding on one of St. Croix finest beaches, in a historical church, or even at the Botanical Garden. You may also want to have your memorable wedding at Buccaneer Hotel, Carambola Beach Resort and Spa, Chenay Bay Beach Resort, Colony Cove, Comanche Hotel and Bridge House Guest Rooms, Divi Carina Bay Resort and Casino, Frederiksted Hotel, Hotel Caravelle, King Christian Hotel, The Palms at Pelican Cove, or Sand Castle on the Beach, all with easy access to a beach. No matter where on St. Croix you choose to have your wedding, it will be yours to remember forever.
By Colleen Clarke
Colleen Clarke is a writer for Island Kultuur Magazine, an online publication of Infinity Group.
1This and additional information can be found at the St. Croix Landmark Society’s website.
2This information is based on the history of the Virgin Islands, “Clear de Road”, written by Robert Hill. This book was written to raise public awareness on the cultural heritage of the U.S. Virgin Islands, then known as the Danish West Indies, on the Emancipation of 1848 and Fireburn of 1878. A must have book to add to your collection of history of the U.S. Virgin Islands.
3The St. Croix Landmark Society presents a detailed view into the 18th century Plantation life.
4St. Croix Tourism offers some pictures and detailed information of these national parks, monuments, and wildlife refuge.
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