Columbus Landing Beach is located on the North Shore of the island, within the Salt River Bay Historical and Ecological Preserve. This beach was the site of a native village in the 1400’s and is historically significant because of the encounter between Christopher Columbus’ crew with the natives in his second journey to the America’s in 1493. There is a visitors center on the hill, accessible by dirt road (beware of large ruts and potholes). There is a short, easy trail through some tall grass that leads to the site of an earthen fort. This lookout affords beautiful views of Salt River Bay. There are several kayak companies in the area that offer tours of Salt River Bay and extensive historical insight into the area. Because this is a National Historical Landmark, please do not take any souvenirs or leave any trash behind.
This is a fairly secluded beach and doesn’t see very much traffic. More times than not, you will be the only ones there. The water is good for swimming and there is reef just a short way out for snorkeling. Otherwise, there is generally a grassy bottom with sporadic sandy parts. There is also some great diving located offshore, and several local dive shops offer boat dives in this area. There are no amenities here and there is little shade, so be sure to pack your sun protection.
From Christiansted, take Northside Road through La Grande Princesse and turn right onto North Shore Road. The entrance for Salt River Marina will be on your right hand side. Take the road past Salt River Marina. This road will dead end at Columbus Landing.
Access to Salt River Bay Historical and Ecological Preserve and the Columbus Landing site is restricted to day use only. Digging, littering and the construction of temporary structures is prohibited and punishable by fines. The Salt River Bay Historical and Ecological Preserve is co-managed by the Virgin Islands Department of Planning and Natural Resources, the National Park Service and the Government of the Virgin Islands.
There are no amenities on the Columbus Landing Beach aside from a few thatch awnings for shade. There is a visitors center on the hill with restrooms a short drive away. Be sure to bring lots of drinking water and sun protection.