Bars of the B.V.I.: Soggy Dollar & Foxy’s on Jost Van Dyke

by Chris on May 2, 2010

A rundown on two popular BVI bars, the Soggy Dollar and Foxy’s.

Soggy Dollar Bar, Jost Van Dyke, BVI, British Virgin Islands, Arabella

On last week’s trip on the Arabella, we stopped at two of the Caribbean’s most well-known bars, the Soggy Dollar and Foxy’s. Both are on Jost Van Dyke, arguably party central of the islands.

Soggy Dollar Bar, Jost Van Dyke, White Bay, BVI, British Virgin Islands, Arabella

Stories of the Soggy Dollar Bar are legion among sailors, so I was looking forward to dropping anchor in White Bay. Although our weather wasn’t the greatest, the bay was packed with boats of all sizes.

Jost Van Dyke, White Bay, BVI, British Virgin Islands, Arabella

We tendered into Ivan’s, itself a funky bar decorated with seashells, on the Bay’s east shore.

Ivan's, White Bay, Jost Van Dyke, BVI, British Virgin Islands, Arabella

I was a little surprised with how empty this side of the Bay was – almost no one was at the bar (and the owners didn’t seem to mind).

Path to the Soggy Dollar Bar, White Bay, Jost Van Dyke, BVI, British Virgin Islands, Arabella

It’s a short walk over a rocky ridge to the Soggy Dollar, through cacti-dotted terrain that screams true desert island. Although Jost Van Dyke is known as the barefoot island, you’ll want shoes for this part, as you do go up a hill.

Path to the Soggy Dollar Bar, White Bay, Jost Van Dyke, BVI, British Virgin Islands, Arabella

You can’t miss the Soggy Dollar – just follow the people.

Soggy Dollar Bar, Jost Van Dyke, White Bay, BVI, British Virgin Islands, Arabella

Our Friday afternoon stop hit peak time for daytrippers, and the bar was packed.

Soggy Dollar Bar, Jost Van Dyke, White Bay, BVI, British Virgin Islands, Arabella

Lots of bikinis, lots of tattoos, lots of attitude.  Honestly, the scene was a little frat party for us – while we like a good party, we don’t like having to wait in long lines for Painkillers (and I groove a more dive-y laid back vibe, such as the one offered at Willy T’s). It was a little bit of a letdown (I’ve since read that the bar is best at night, after the daytrippers leave).

Soggy Dollar Bar, Jost Van Dyke, White Bay, BVI, British Virgin Islands, Arabella

Still, the Soggy Dollar was fun for people watching.

Soggy Dollar Bar, Jost Van Dyke, White Bay, BVI, British Virgin Islands, Arabella

This guy isn’t passed out – just seasick! (or so his friends told us).

Foxy's, Jost van Dyke, BVI, British Virgin Islands, Arabella

Mid-afternoon we headed back to the Arabella and sailed around Jost Van Dyke to Foxy’s, located in Great Harbour. The Arabella, which hosted our trip, had planned the itinerary so we would arrive for the famous Friday night barbecue.

Foxy's, Jost van Dyke, BVI, British Virgin Islands, Arabella

We went to the gift shop and bought our obligatory T-shirts, then went over to the bar for a drink. Foxy’s takes rum drinks to a whole new level, with a whole menu of choices. I stuck with Painkillers.

Foxy's, Jost van Dyke, BVI, British Virgin Islands, Arabella

It was an extremely hot and humid evening, and while Foxy’s has ceiling fans, apparently the management doesn’t turn them on. So the restaurant itself was somewhat stifling and the line for the barbecue buffet snaked through the entire restaurant.

Foxy's, Jost van Dyke, BVI, British Virgin Islands, Arabella

We killed time by walking around the bar, checking out all of the license plates, scribblings, business cards, pennants and stickers that make up Foxy’s decor. We saw some of the same people eating here who were drinking at the Soggy Dollar during the day.

Foxy's, Jost van Dyke, BVI, British Virgin Islands, Arabella

These two Jost van Dyke bars are obviously iconic stops on a sailors’ BVI bar crawl. I’m not sure why I didn’t like them more. Maybe it was the whole been-there, bought-the-T-shirt mentality. Or maybe I was feeling a bit cranky from the humidity, my sunburn, and my snorkeling skin rash (it was the last day and I was feeling a little oversocialized).

White Bay, Jost Van Dyke, BVI, British Virgin Islands, Arabella

In any case, I loved the combination of snorkeling, sailing and restaurants that the BVI offers. I would love to go back to visit the Baths on Virgin Gorda and maybe have a drink or two at Pusser’s. I am not done with the Caribbean yet!

What are your favorite Caribbean beach bars? What islands are your favorites?

| Chris Gray Faust is a veteran journalist, travel expert, social media butterfly - and editrix of this site. Like what you read? Check out her writing, editing and social media services.

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Sue May 3, 2010 at 6:25 pm

I think Foxy’s is overrated. The people who work there are not that friendly, the sandfleas are awful, and the food is nothing special. The lines are long, for sure, but go fast. Generally, though, it is not a super experience.

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Chris May 16, 2010 at 3:31 pm

Sue – I’m glad to hear that I’m not the only one who feels that way!

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Jane May 22, 2010 at 9:46 am

February 2010 was our first encounter with FOXY’S. I wasn’t sure if the fleas we brought back to our boat were from the mangey (?) dog or sand fleas…In either case the second half of our week was REALLY itchy…I have scars from the bites.

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Marion Crary March 3, 2011 at 5:13 pm

I agree that Foxy’s is overrated. We were first there about 12 years ago and even then the staff was not the friendliest and on the second stop a few years later, not much had changed in the act, etc.

The Soggy Dollar at Jost Van Dyke has really changed, and we understand it has changed since electricity has come to the area. When first there, it was a quiet deserted strip of beautiful beach with just people from anchored sailboats and visitors at the small resort. That visit was at least 12 years ago. The most recent visit in 2008 was just as you experienced: small boats, daytrippers from Puerto Rico had taken over the beach and there was too much of the frat house vibe. We were anchored overnight and evening was back to quiet and serenity when the daytrippers left. It is still a beautiful area that I hope to return to another time.

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Chris March 5, 2011 at 11:07 am

@Marion – Jost van Dyke is a gorgeous island so I can see it having a totally different feel when the frat boys go home :) Thanks for sharing!

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Phil July 14, 2011 at 6:58 pm

The BVI isn’t just about Jost Van Dyke but rather about the over all experience. Foxy’s is a bit overhyped and the Soggy Dollar is now the in thing, but it is necessary to experience the many islands that make up the BVI. Peter Island, Norman Island, Virgin Gorda, and Anegada are just a few. The thing is that sailing in the BVI is like skiing in Aspen or Vail. It just can’t be beat. Even the small island of Marine Cay is a must see. We have done BVI six times and it never gets old. on one trip we were coming in to Soper’s hole when a pod of dolphins escorted us into the harbor. you need to see more than Foxy’s or the Soggy Dollar. There is just so much more!!

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CaribeSail August 14, 2011 at 7:20 pm

Phil

I guess for newbies you gotta take folks to meet Foxy and hang at the Soggy Dollar……..but after that your right see the BVI. There are many places that are idlyic and serene – its best to keep those places a secreat!

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MJ June 26, 2012 at 11:07 am

Best bar, by far in BVI is Cow Wreck on Anegada. . .people,food, drinks, beach, water. . . .ALL UNBELIEVABLE! Big Bamboo, Potter’s by the Sea & Neptune’s give Cow Wreck a run for their money, too!

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