Catherineberg Ruins, St. John Overview
The Catherineberg Plantation Ruins in Virgin Islands National Park are among the best-preserved on all of St. John. The Catherineberg sugar mill is the one of the largest in the virgin islands. In its hay-day, Catherineberg produced sugar and rum.
We explored the ruins after Hurricane Maria and cover what it looks like now in this post.
In this post we’ll cover everything you need to know about Catherineberg Plantation ruins and the hike to them including:
- Catherineberg Ruins Tips & Things to Know
- Best time to visit Catherineberg Ruins
- Getting to Catherineberg Ruins
- Catherineberg Ruins post-hurricane Maria
- Photos of Catherineberg Ruins
Catherineberg Ruins – Virgin Islands National Park, St. John USVI
Things to Know Before Visiting Catherineberg Ruins
Sandals or shoes are your friend.
- FOOTWEAR: Sandals are ok to wear in the ruins as the walk from the parking lot to the ruins is short and easy.
Please, Wear Sunscreen.
- SUNSCREEN: Many sunscreens have been outlawed in the Virgin Islands due to reef-damaging ingredients. Goes without saying but we’ll say it anyway – wear sunscreen! The Caribbean is unforgiving on unprotected skin. We’ve made that mistake enough times to make lathering up a top priority. We highly recommend this one (which is reef-safe).
Depending on the time of year/day you might want to pack insect repellent.
- BUG SPRAY: We didn’t have any trouble with mosquitoes but some people do so you may want to be prepared with sunscreen. We recommend this eco-friendly, DEET free insect repellent we’ve been using for years.
Where to Stay
Visiting Virgin Islands National Park? If you haven’t decided where to stay (yet) check out our helpful guide on visiting Virgin Islands National Park for tips. Don’t have time? Here’s our favorite place to stay on St John.
Due to the long term closure of Caneel Bay (the only resort in the park destroyed by the 2017 hurricanes) and the ensuing battle with the park service over the future management of the property, the closest hotels & resorts are back in Cruz Bay.
Best Time to Visit Catherineberg Ruins
The best time to visit the Catherineberg Ruins is in the morning. Morning time in the Virgin Islands is quieter with less folks out and about. We recommend you get up a little early and see the ruins in the morning.
Getting to Catherineberg Ruins
The Annaberg Plantation Ruins is a 10 minute drive from Cruz Bay where the main island ferry lands. Visitors can use the Catherineberg parking lot if bringing their own vehicle or island taxi service. As opposed to many of the main park attractions which are located off the main park road (North Shore Rd), Catherineberg Ruins are located off of Highway 10, further inland.
Exploring the Catherineberg Ruins
The Catherineberg Ruins are easily accessed from a small parking lot via a short walk. The ruins consist of an 18th century sugar mill which, unlike more popular mill at Reef Bay and Annaberg, visitors can explore from the outside and inside. Due to some damage sustained as a result of Hurricane Maria, visitors are not currently able to explore the Annaberg Sugar Mill.
Best Photo Spots – Catherineberg Ruins
The best spot to photograph The Catherineberg Plantation Ruins is around the back side of the sugar mill to get a shot of the breadth of the area. Inside the sugar mill also makes for some great shots as well.
Catherineberg Ruins After Hurricane Maria
Hurricane Maria had a devastating impact on the Caribbean islands, especially St. John, home to Virgin Islands National Park. Many of the photos of the park you’ll find feature locations that have been totally changed since the hurricane hit the island in 2017.
With that being said, the Catherineberg ruins are still very much in tact and stunningly beautiful – well worth the trip!
*all of our photos of the park feature it in its current condition, post-2017 hurricane Maria damage
Nearby Catherineberg Ruins
Experience Virgin Islands National Park in 8K
VIRGIN ISLANDS 8K is a visually stunning journey through one of the most beautiful national parks in the world, Virgin Islands. Journey with More Than Just Parks as we explore this tropical paradise located on the outskirts of the Caribbean Sea.
Swim with sea turtles, explore ancient jungle ruins, relax on white sand beaches, and soak in the island beauty. This is Virgin Islands National Park.
Getting to Virgin Islands National Park
Closest Airport: STT – Cyril E. King Airport (distance – 13 miles from Cruz Bay)
The fastest way to get to Virgin Islands National Park is by plane, flying into St. Thomas’s Cyril E. King Airport Airport. Cyril E King Airport on the neighboring island of St Thomas (also part of the US Virgin Islands so no passport required for Americans) is the closest (and most affordable) place to fly into to get to Virgin Islands National Park.
Rental Car: St Thomas (Hertz, Enterprise, Budget, Dollar, more)
Ferry to St. John
Ferry: After flying in to St. Thomas you’ll need to catch a ferry over to St. John. This can be done in one of two places currently: Charlotte Amalie, or Red Hook (furthest from the airport but closest to St John). The cost per adult to ride the ferry is $20 each way.
Best Time to Visit Virgin Islands National Park
The best season to visit Virgin Islands National Park is Winter when temperatures are still warm and both humidity and crowds are down.
Winter is also known as the rainy season but rain typically comes and goes quickly in the Virgin Islands. This is a great time of year to visit as well as winter marks the end of Hurricane season.
Who doesn’t dream of tropical islands during the dead of winter? Can’t just be me…
I would recommend visiting anytime between December through April.
Driving in Virgin Islands National Park
Virgin Islands National Park has no official park shuttle to get around the park. To get around the park visitors will need to bring their own mode of transportation.
Currently a car is the best mode of transport in the park and can tourists not from the island should find a rental car from St Thomas and take the ferry to St John.
Alternatively, there are a few taxi services that operate on the island, mostly open air “safari-style” vehicles. Many of these taxis run on a fairly regular basis from Cruz Bay to many of the top tourist spots on St. John.
Helpful Related Articles
Virgin Islands National Park Guide: Epic Guide to Virgin Islands National Park
Things to Do Virgin Islands: 12 Amazing Things to Do in Virgin Islands National Park
Virgin Islands Facts: 10 Interesting Facts About Virgin Islands National Park