Tortola holds the title of largest and most populated island in the British Virgin Islands. At 13.5 miles long and 3 miles wide, Tortola is home to about 25,000 people. Tortola was discovered by Christopher Columbus in 1493, but remained wholly unsettled until pirates like Blackbeard and Captain Kidd permanently inhabited the island.
Formed by volcanic activity like most in the Virgin Islands chain, Tortola has beautiful mountains, with Mount Sage (1750 feet) as its highest peak. Tortola lies near an earthquake fault and minor earthquakes are not uncommon. Road Town is the island’s largest town as well as its main town. However, when you arrive at Tortola on a day boat rental, you will likely go through customs at Soper’s Hole harbor, one of the most popular little villages in the Caribbean.
Soper’s Hole, known locally as “West End,” is an idyllic harbor with neon-painted shops and restaurants on shore, and one of the most popular stops for boats and yachts looking to stock up on fresh supplies. It has 45 slips and protected moorings along with restaurants, dozens of great bars, and fun shops. Grab a painkiller at Pusser’s Landing and watch the boats as they dance about the marina. The colorful shops nestled against the mountains of Tortola are the reason Soper’s Hole is one of the most photographed locations in the British Virgin Islands.