Tortola COVID-19 Visitor Status

Link to the Latest COVID-19 Statements from the BVI Government

Scroll down the page for the current press releases of the details concerning entry, testing and quarantine requirements.

Here is the link to the Visitor Portal where visitors have to register to begin the process of entry. Click on the Non-Resident button in the upper right hand corner of the page for more information.

Update November 14th, 2020 – you register before arriving, bring the results of a COVID test within 3 days of arrival. Upon arrival, you spend 4 days in quarantine, then take a test.

If all tests are negative, total required COVID testing cost in BVI is just 175 dollars. So this is good as it going to be for now. Quarantine is not so bad at Applesurf Villa on the Beach! Here is the link to the BVI Government’s Official Corona 19 policy issued via the press release of Nov 10th.

Update September 21st, 2020 – British Virgin Islands Corona virus restrictions relaxed! Open for visitors December 1st! Details to follow, hoping for Get a Test, then Relax.

Details to follow. Book, float and relax. Bliss awaits… For the latest information concerning the COVID-19 Pandemic, visit British Virgin Islands government.

Update October 26th, 2020 – Tortola opens phase 1 of the tourist industry, read the statement here.

The BVI has shutdown all travel to and from the country and has began a 24 hour curfew as of March 26th, 2020.

During the curfew, all beaches in the BVI were closed. No surfing or swimming for months!

The country started with the 24 curfew for the first month. On April 25th, the curfew was changed from 24 hours to 17 hours with residents allowed out of their homes from 6 am to 1 pm.

On May 10th, curfew was further reduced to the 12 hours from 7 pm to 6 am . Finally, the public beaches were opened!

The islands are closed to all visitors until September as of this post.

Belongers can come home on special airplane flights only, no water services. All Belongers then go thru a 14 day quarantine where they are tested for COVID-19 before allowed to go home.

To date, they have been 8 cases of the COVID-19 with 1 person passing on.

Feel comfortable to make a reservation for the coming season. Any existing or new reservation at Applesurf Villas that could or would be affected by this pandemic will be credited 100% of their rental charges.

Please email for details.

Surfing Tortola

Surf Beaches on Tortola

Surfing in azure blue waters so clean you could drink if not for the salt.

Steve, the manager and music man of The Elm in Cane Garden running down the line at Apple Bay.

Surfing waves get to a good size here on the north shore of Tortola, maybe you could get lucky while on your vacation and see the energy exploding.

Warm clean water with the winter’s north swells makes for a surfer’s paradise.

Larry, a local from neighboring St Johns ripping of the top

Tortola features 4 good surf spots with reasonable access; Apple Bay, Josiahs Bay, Cane Garden Bay and Smugglers Cove.

The beach at Josiah’s Bay is sandy bottom for the most part, with a wave for every level of surfing experience. A great place to learn, a great place to rip. The right side of the beach offers white water rollers to take a first surf lesson on. Outside and to the left are some fun waves for when you become comfortable with the sport.

Icah at Apple Bay, is a surf instructor at Josiah’s Bay SurfSchoolBVI.

Josiah’s Bay located on the North Shore of the island towards the East End. It is a beautiful ride from the West End up and across the mountain roads taking about 40 minutes. Some great views and murals along the way

The surf break at Apple Bay is over a reef with some nasty coral, rocks and sea urchins, so it is not for beginners. That being said, the wave breaks real nice over the reef and holds up to double overhead swell. When the wind blows right, Apple Bay is magic.

Surf Break Apple Bay
Breaking waves and surf front of Bomba’s right down the road from Applesurf Villa

Cane Garden offers one of the world’s best waves when a north swell is happening. This right only wave offers a 100 yard plus ride that will explode down the line. The bottom is rocky and the wave breaks on a rocky beach so is definitely not for beginners!

Smugglers is a place to go when swells get real big. Most of the wave energy is dissipated here with a sweet right on the point at the right side of the beach. The bottom is fire coral so again, this wave is not for beginners.

Pictures taken at Apple Bay on February 16th, 2017. Swell was from that nasty northeaster that hit the New York area couple days earlier.

One of the great things about the Caribbean is that ground swells that come to Tortola are so predictable. A northeaster running up the US coast and most likely Tortola will have waves 3 days later.

Please learn the etiquette of surfing before going into the lineup to surf.

Tortola Waves

Photos of Surf Session at Apple Bay, Tortola

Where the Waves Come From in Tortola

One of the really neat things about Tortola as it relates to surfing is the timing. For the most part, the memorable, heart pounding waves are created by the Nor’easters and winter storms from October to April up in United States.

The storms are predicted 3-5 days out. When the storm arrives and then moves out into the Atlantic Ocean, it creates a ground swell that radiates south. At around 30 miles per hour, it takes about 3 days for the waves to arrive at the surf breaks in Tortola.

You can time it so you literally go to sleep with a calm ocean whispering in your ear and waking up to perfect overhead waves. The swells from these storms usually last 3 or more days. You can score a perfect surf week in Tortola if you can be flexible and watch the weather.

A Nor’easter back in October 2016 brought waves to Tortola. On October 10th, as I can not surf anymore, I took some pictures to get a little remote surfing buzz. It happens when shooting surfers.  Wind was off shore, nice ground swell rolling in. Sweet magic on the island – Apple Bay Tortola.

Pictures of surfers riding waves on October 2016 at Apple Bay