Keel Point, British Virgin Islands

Photo: Walker Mangum.Nwmangum at en.wikipedia [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons
Photo: Walker Mangum.Nwmangum at en.wikipedia [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons
You’ve been sitting on a deserted beach all morning. Your own deserted beach. You like the sound of that. There aren’t many places you can claim as your own these days. Sure, maybe you can round a bend and not see anyone for a few minutes. But it’s usually interrupted by a jogger or a barking dog chasing a ball. Not this time. In the last few hours, you’ve only seen a pair of pink flamingoes, a few dark-moving spots under the water, and a boat far enough offshore that you couldn’t see the crew. This stretch of powdery sand is all yours.

You’re on Anegada, the second largest, but the least populated, of the British Virgin Islands. The 15-square-mile island is called the “drowned land.” Unlike the other islands in the volcanic archipelago, it’s flat and made of coral and limestone. Salt ponds fill the western side of the island, and Horseshoe Reef, the largest barrier reef in the Caribbean, surrounds it. The reef makes it hard to navigate around Anegada; more than 300 ships have wrecked offshore. That’s why you have a beach all to yourself.

To reach this deserted beach, you rode a ferry north from Virgin Gorda. After docking at Settling Point, you passed feral cattle, donkeys, and goats on your way to The Settlement. Most of the population, less than 200 people, live in the only town. A post office, a medical clinic, and a bakery are in The Village, the center of town. The Walls, a stone barricade, used to enclose the farming area where maize and sweet potatoes grew. And fishing boats bob offshore in Lower Bay.

Photo: ScubaBear68 (Flickr: Anegada - Loblolly and Salt Ponds - 09) [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Photo: ScubaBear68 (Flickr: Anegada – Loblolly and Salt Ponds – 09) [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons
From The Settlement, you went north, passing the tiny airport, the Anegada Rock Iguana Headstart Facility (a breeding ground for Anegada ground iguanas), and salt ponds surrounded by cacti. Plus one gorgeous beach after another.

Then you arrived at Keel Point and the Anegada Beach Club. This recently renovated resort is your home for the week. Your king suite is simple but spotless. It overlooks the island’s only pool. Yoga and Pilates are offered at sunrise and sunset. Hammocks sway between palm trees. The bar and grill, which has a sand floor, is made from trees downed in a hurricane. They’ll add lobster to anything from a BLT to a pizza. And kiteboards, kayaks, and bikes are ready for you to go exploring.

But exploring will have to wait. You found your deserted beach, and you’re not about to give it up. With a chair, an umbrella, and plenty of reading material, you’re all set until the sun starts to go down . . . or someone dares to interrupt you.

 

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