British Virgin Islands: Recovery from Hurricanes Irma & Maria
These two hurricanes were simply put…devastating. And unfortunately, those that should and could have helped, i.e. their foreign protectorates, have helped only moderately, as theBritish Virgin Islands were deemed too “wealthy” and the BVI’s have only been offered a loan which we have been told is more than they can afford. Therefore, the clean up will take years. What happened immediately was that all anchorages and beaches were cleaned up so that the BVI’s by water are back to normal as charter is their biggest tourist industry. Some of the shallow water coral gardens were damaged, however there are still plenty of beautiful coral gardens for snorkeling and the charter Captains all know where the great snorkeling is now. A new Willy Thorton Floating Bar and Restaurant has been purchased and is now floating in Great Harbour on Peter Island. The Soggy Dollar Bar is alive and well; the hotel that once was may take years to be back, however, your have your hotel taken care of floating close by. There are few restaurants ashore, which should not be much of a problem, as the food was always better on board than ashore. A few of a sun downer rum shacks are gone, but there are enough re-opened on various beaches for fun times. The Bitter End Yacht Club will be re-built eventually, but has not yet been. Leverick Bay is re-opened, with the Happy Hour Pirate Show. Heading ashore on any island though will reveal hurricane damage. There are still yachts and cars washed up, turned over and in front yards against trees and just where ever the storms left them. We heard about yachts and boats, but virtually every car on the island was totaled as well, and each and every one of these damaged yachts, dinghies, and cars have to be hauled to, loaded on and removed by barge. It will be a very long process that will take years. Until then, stick to the sands and waters of the beautiful coastal island beaches, where the vegetation has re-grown. Have a rum punch at a rum shack on the beach> Don’t venture inland, and all will be well.