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Daily Daydream: Buck Island Reef, U.S. Virgin Islands

Pack a snorkel, swimsuit, and sunscreen for a trip to see the Buck Island Reef. One of the only marine areas in the National Park System, Buck Island attracts snorkelers and divers to its reef and crystal clear waters. No need for scuba certification here—one of the main draws is the park’s underwater trail, where you can take a guided snorkel tour through the reef to see coral and colorful sea life.

On land, you’ll discover that the island may be uninhabited by people, but it’s teeming with animal life, including sea turtles and pelicans.

Where is it? The island lies 1.5 miles off St. Croix, in the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Where to stay? Stay within easy access to Buck Island, at one of the cottages in the Chenay Bay Beach Resort. The resort is located on a former sugar plantation and offers easy beach access and free kayaks, pedal boats, and other water sports to guests.

What else should I know? Make a reservation on one of the boats that sail to Buck Island, as admission to the underwater trail is limited to protect the environment.

Who’s it for? Snorkelers, swimmers, SCUBA divers, and wildlife-watchers.

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