British Virgin Islands

Focused Community Service & Sailing

A vision of paradise? Yes… yet the tourism it attracts threatens to upset the delicate ecological balance, and our core environmental projects are based around some of these issues…

This unique environmental camp is run as part of our GoBeyond service programs where you will live with the rest of your service team aboard a sailing vessel. Living aboard allows us to visit most every island while providing a perfect floating home. It’s refreshing to be out on the water where there are cool breezes, and a great sense of camaraderie comes from working together as a crew.

While service work forms the core of this wildlife conservation camp, you’ll become an accomplished sailor as you and your team navigate the waters of the BVI. As you volunteer in the Caribbean, we’ll also find ample time to snorkel the reefs, climb Mount Sage, barbecue on the beach, listen to steel bands as the day winds down and sleep in a hammock out on deck under a blanket of Caribbean stars.

  • Appropriate Age

    High school ages

  • Student Groups

    Grouped aboard within +/- 3 years of age

  • Students & Staff

    14 students and 3 staff per boat

  • Vessel Type & Fleet Size

    Typically catamaran / 1 - 2 boats

  • Fleet Itinerary

    This program follows a unique itinerary exclusive to Preserving Paradise that hops in and out of our larger AQ fleet in the BVI

  • Program Detail

    This adventure is run in conjunction with our sister program GoBeyond

Session 1 Jun 15 - Jul 05
Days 21 Availability Limited Tuition $$5,670
Session 2 Jul 07 - Jul 27
Days 21 Availability Limited Tuition $$5,670
Session 3 Jul 29 - Aug 14
Days 17 Availability Waitlist Tuition $$4,870
Dates Days Availability Tuition
Session 1 Jun 15 - Jul 05 21 Limited $5,670
Session 2 Jul 07 - Jul 27 21 Limited $5,670
Session 3 Jul 29 - Aug 14 17 Waitlist $4,870
 
 
Share this adventure

Activities

Sailing
Marine Biology
Watersports
Service
Island Exploration
Requirements
  • Ages 14 and up
Certifications
  • 60-80hrs. Community Service
  • Sailing Experience

The Adventure

It all starts here
ActionQuest Preserving Paradise Map

Preserving Paradise Overview

Below you will find all the specific details about our Preserving Paradise environmental camp, but there’s no better way to learn more than to watch for yourself!

Community Service Summer Program Bvi

First Day Out

After a morning briefing from ActionQuest directors and staff, the student leader of the day will take our monohull or catamaran off the dock and set sail across the Sir Francis Drake Channel. Students get acquainted with the BVI waters by snorkeling the infamous caves of Norman Island. After the student chefs of the day serve dinner to the crew, we’ll begin our training for the tag and release of sea turtles.

Work With Local Students British Virgin Islands Camp

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 1-7)

via Virgin Gorda
  • School Visits – Students go onshore for the day to coordinate activities and lessons for students at local schools. Ages may vary but the students will undoubtedly be excited to see you. Keep up the energy because the work is incredibly rewarding!
Explore The Baths Summer Camp Community Service

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 1-7)

via Virgin Gorda
  • The Baths – One of the Caribbean’s most iconic landmarks, and there’s almost nobody here! Students have a wet landing to explore the boulders and caves before finishing it up with some time on the beach.
Sea Turtle Tagging Program Community Service High School

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 1-7)

via Virgin Gorda
  • Manta Tow – It’s not only one of the most effective ways to spot turtles but it’s also a ton of fun. Students gear up and are pulled through the water in search of the elusive marine reptiles. Once a turtle is spotted, it takes some serious team work to catch it and bring it to the surface. After the chase is over, we’ll switch over to “research mode” and go through the procedure of measuring and tagging the animal.
Community Service Summer Camp For High Schoolers

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 1-7)

via Virgin Gorda
  • Beach Barbecue and Dance – After a long day of service work, what more could somebody want than to dance the night away? GoBeyond meets up with the larger fleet of students in the BVIs to do just that. Students will eat their fill, make new friends, and dance to “the best DJ on the island.”
Community Service Summer Program Schools

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 1-7)

via Virgin Gorda
  • Build, Paint, Treat, Repeat – There’s always work to be done on an island in the sun. We work directly with the community to maintain schoolhouses, landscape parks, and even help at the recycling center.
Teen Development Leadership Adventure
Preserving Paradise Activities

Life Aboard AQ

Lifeworks Forum

It’s amazing how much you can learn about yourself when you are living in close quarters with a bunch of strangers…

Beyond all the exciting activities, it is this personal growth that we find equally important, and at AQ we highlight this growth through an element of all AQ programs called the Lifeworks Forum. Held at intervals throughout the voyage, the forum is designed to complement the learning that takes place through the everyday interaction aboard. Students have the opportunity to participate in – and lead – discussions on topics like personal responsibility, values, integrity, communication and goals. Of all the skills that students take from their voyages, it is the life skills that can carry them the farthest. At AQ, we feel that while building one’s life, it is important to be sure it is based on a foundation of compassion and personal integrity.

Live Aboard A Boat And Do Community Service
Preserving Paradise Activities

Life Aboard AQ

The Job Wheel

At ActionQuest, there are no passengers, only shipmates. Being a shipmate means that you will share the day to day responsibility of running a 50 ft. sailing vessel! While the staff are there to teach and help, your daily job will be assigned by using the famous “AQ job wheel”. Have you ever been the head chef for 15 people? You will with AQ/GoBeyond! Each day, the wheel turns and you will get a new job, and at the end of the trip, you can truly say that you were involved in every aspect of making your adventure happen.

ARRIVING TO ACTIONQUEST IN THE BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS

Your adventure begins! The majority of students will be flying to St. Thomas (STT) in the US Virgin Islands. For students flying via STT, ActionQuest’s professional staff meet them and assist with the beautiful ferry ride to Tortola then on to the entire camp which awaits you in West End, Tortola. There you will go through the formal check in process and make your way to your new comfortable and clean floating home. For those flying directly into the BVI (EIS), students are met by an airport representative.

Students then get to spend the rest of the first day preparing for life aboard and getting to know one another while the sun sets behind the dock.

After the first night spent sleeping on your new floating home alongside 11 other excited students, you are ready for…

Summer Environmental Community Service Camp British Virgin Islands
Preserving Paradise Activities

Community Service

The Need We Address

The British Virgin Islands are well known for their astonishing natural beauty and pristine marine environment. Their location within the Tradewinds and Atlantic currents give the wind shaped hills an almost fantastic appearance. The sheltered waters, breath-taking beaches, and robust forests provide an ideal waypoint for many threatened animals at vulnerable points in their life cycle. These same features also make the islands sensitive to even small changes in the environment. Marine ecosystems are particularly fragile and human interference has strained the delicate balance that has been at work since the archipelago’s formation. Add to that a convoluted history of colonialism as well as an ever expanding economic reliance on tourism, and you have an ecosystem and culture at a pivotal fork in the road.

We partner with local organizations whose objectives are as diverse as the islands themselves. The Association of Reef Keepers (ARK) trains GoBeyond students to tag and release sea turtles for an international monitoring initiative. On the environmental side, we team up with the BVI National Parks Trust in a long term effort to replant Tortola’s decimated mangrove forests and survey beaches for trash. We also partner with schools, youth organizations, and community centers to facilitate activities and programs for local children. The service work often jumps around as much as we do since the community needs change faster than the Caribbean weather. With several projects happening in multiple locations, GoBeyond students can volunteer in the Caribbean and have the flexibility to lend a helping hand wherever the wind may take them.

Anegada Travel Program For High School Students Community Service

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 8-11)

via Anegada
  • This remote island differs from the rest of the archipelago in that it is flat, sandy, and undeveloped. Most tourists never make it to the emerald green waters that surround Anegada but GoBeyond students will spend 3 irreplaceable days there.
Teen Summer Program British Virgin Islands

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 8-11)

via Anegada
  • Beach Surveillance Hike – The remote beaches of Anegada’s northern shore are rarely visited by anyone. Students will collectively hike the entire beach in search of turtle nests and unique items that have washed ashore. Previous GoBeyond groups have found messages in bottles, entire boats, and even products from China.
Anegada Iguana Program Community Service Projects

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 8-11)

via Anegada
  • Rock Iguana Headstart Facility – Anegada is home to one of the world’s most endangered species. The Anegada Rock Iguana used to thrive on the island until humans introduced invasive predators. We work with the National Parks Trust to feed the animals, maintain their grounds, and find nests in the wild.
Tag Sea Turtles Community Service Project For High School Students

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 8-11)

via Anegada
  • Rodeo Style – Since the water around Anegada is too shallow for traditional methods of catching turtles, we enlist local guides to help us catch turtles their way. Don’t hesitate, because you won’t be able to catch the turtle without the element of surprise!
Sunset Flotilla
Teenage Service Adventure
Teen Adventure Service Sailing
Sailing Service Program For High School Programs British Virgin Islands

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 12-21)

via North Tortola & Jost Van Dyke
  • During the winter months, the northern shore of Tortola is pummeled by frequent squalls and fierce swells but during our time there, the lack of development and steady breeze makes for some hauntingly beautiful views and fantastic sailing.
Summer Program Sail Caribbean Community Service

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 12-21)

via North Tortola & Jost Van Dyke
  • Local Youth Organizations – Despite growing up on an island, many youth in the BVI rarely have the opportunity to explore their territory via sailboat. We team up with the Jost Van Dyke Preservation Society and the BVI Youth Empowerment Project to buddy up with local students and take them out for the day. GoBeyond students can coordinate everything from painting murals to a fun day at the beach – it’s the interaction that counts.
Learn To Sail Earn Community Service Hours Caribbean

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 12-21)

via North Tortola & Jost Van Dyke
  • Hike Mount Sage – Conquer the BVI’s highest peak with your team as you climb from sea level to 1,700 feet (not included in third session itinerary).
Environmental Community Service Summer Program For Teens

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 12-21)

via North Tortola & Jost Van Dyke
  • Ocean Conservancy Cleanups – Much of the coastline in this part of the BVI is rarely visited. As a result, the garbage that washes ashore can give us a clear idea of just how much plastic is actually in the ocean. GoBeyond doesn’t only clean up the beaches but also contributes data to an international organization that monitors the amount of trash in the ocean. For science!
ActionQuest brochure icon
  • Get Our Free Online Brochure

    Full of detailed information about our adventures, staff, and FAQs for you to access anytime.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Best Summer Camp Ever

Time to Say Goodbye

The best way to explain what it means to say goodbye on the Preserving Paradise environmental camp is to use the words of one of our past students, parents or staff members…

I created unbreakable bonds with my shipmates like I had never experienced with anyone else before. Living so closely with fifteen different people, all from fifteen different places with fifteen different perspectives on life has given me a much broader view of the world. One I will take with me for the rest of my life. ”

Alli C. / Fonda, NY
ActionQuest Preserving Paradise Map

Preserving Paradise Overview

Below you will find all the specific details about our Preserving Paradise environmental camp, but there’s no better way to learn more than to watch for yourself!

ARRIVING TO ACTIONQUEST IN THE BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS

Your adventure begins! The majority of students will be flying to St. Thomas (STT) in the US Virgin Islands. For students flying via STT, ActionQuest’s professional staff meet them and assist with the beautiful ferry ride to Tortola then on to the entire camp which awaits you in West End, Tortola. There you will go through the formal check in process and make your way to your new comfortable and clean floating home. For those flying directly into the BVI (EIS), students are met by an airport representative.

Students then get to spend the rest of the first day preparing for life aboard and getting to know one another while the sun sets behind the dock.

After the first night spent sleeping on your new floating home alongside 11 other excited students, you are ready for…

Community Service Summer Program Bvi

First Day Out

After a morning briefing from ActionQuest directors and staff, the student leader of the day will take our monohull or catamaran off the dock and set sail across the Sir Francis Drake Channel. Students get acquainted with the BVI waters by snorkeling the infamous caves of Norman Island. After the student chefs of the day serve dinner to the crew, we’ll begin our training for the tag and release of sea turtles.

Work With Local Students British Virgin Islands Camp

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 1-7)

via Virgin Gorda
  • School Visits – Students go onshore for the day to coordinate activities and lessons for students at local schools. Ages may vary but the students will undoubtedly be excited to see you. Keep up the energy because the work is incredibly rewarding!
Explore The Baths Summer Camp Community Service

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 1-7)

via Virgin Gorda
  • The Baths – One of the Caribbean’s most iconic landmarks, and there’s almost nobody here! Students have a wet landing to explore the boulders and caves before finishing it up with some time on the beach.
Sea Turtle Tagging Program Community Service High School

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 1-7)

via Virgin Gorda
  • Manta Tow – It’s not only one of the most effective ways to spot turtles but it’s also a ton of fun. Students gear up and are pulled through the water in search of the elusive marine reptiles. Once a turtle is spotted, it takes some serious team work to catch it and bring it to the surface. After the chase is over, we’ll switch over to “research mode” and go through the procedure of measuring and tagging the animal.
Community Service Summer Camp For High Schoolers

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 1-7)

via Virgin Gorda
  • Beach Barbecue and Dance – After a long day of service work, what more could somebody want than to dance the night away? GoBeyond meets up with the larger fleet of students in the BVIs to do just that. Students will eat their fill, make new friends, and dance to “the best DJ on the island.”
Community Service Summer Program Schools

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 1-7)

via Virgin Gorda
  • Build, Paint, Treat, Repeat – There’s always work to be done on an island in the sun. We work directly with the community to maintain schoolhouses, landscape parks, and even help at the recycling center.
Summer Environmental Community Service Camp British Virgin Islands
Preserving Paradise Activities

Community Service

The Need We Address

The British Virgin Islands are well known for their astonishing natural beauty and pristine marine environment. Their location within the Tradewinds and Atlantic currents give the wind shaped hills an almost fantastic appearance. The sheltered waters, breath-taking beaches, and robust forests provide an ideal waypoint for many threatened animals at vulnerable points in their life cycle. These same features also make the islands sensitive to even small changes in the environment. Marine ecosystems are particularly fragile and human interference has strained the delicate balance that has been at work since the archipelago’s formation. Add to that a convoluted history of colonialism as well as an ever expanding economic reliance on tourism, and you have an ecosystem and culture at a pivotal fork in the road.

We partner with local organizations whose objectives are as diverse as the islands themselves. The Association of Reef Keepers (ARK) trains GoBeyond students to tag and release sea turtles for an international monitoring initiative. On the environmental side, we team up with the BVI National Parks Trust in a long term effort to replant Tortola’s decimated mangrove forests and survey beaches for trash. We also partner with schools, youth organizations, and community centers to facilitate activities and programs for local children. The service work often jumps around as much as we do since the community needs change faster than the Caribbean weather. With several projects happening in multiple locations, GoBeyond students can volunteer in the Caribbean and have the flexibility to lend a helping hand wherever the wind may take them.

Teen Development Leadership Adventure
Preserving Paradise Activities

Life Aboard AQ

Lifeworks Forum

It’s amazing how much you can learn about yourself when you are living in close quarters with a bunch of strangers…

Beyond all the exciting activities, it is this personal growth that we find equally important, and at AQ we highlight this growth through an element of all AQ programs called the Lifeworks Forum. Held at intervals throughout the voyage, the forum is designed to complement the learning that takes place through the everyday interaction aboard. Students have the opportunity to participate in – and lead – discussions on topics like personal responsibility, values, integrity, communication and goals. Of all the skills that students take from their voyages, it is the life skills that can carry them the farthest. At AQ, we feel that while building one’s life, it is important to be sure it is based on a foundation of compassion and personal integrity.

Live Aboard A Boat And Do Community Service
Preserving Paradise Activities

Life Aboard AQ

The Job Wheel

At ActionQuest, there are no passengers, only shipmates. Being a shipmate means that you will share the day to day responsibility of running a 50 ft. sailing vessel! While the staff are there to teach and help, your daily job will be assigned by using the famous “AQ job wheel”. Have you ever been the head chef for 15 people? You will with AQ/GoBeyond! Each day, the wheel turns and you will get a new job, and at the end of the trip, you can truly say that you were involved in every aspect of making your adventure happen.

Anegada Travel Program For High School Students Community Service

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 8-11)

via Anegada
  • This remote island differs from the rest of the archipelago in that it is flat, sandy, and undeveloped. Most tourists never make it to the emerald green waters that surround Anegada but GoBeyond students will spend 3 irreplaceable days there.
Teen Summer Program British Virgin Islands

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 8-11)

via Anegada
  • Beach Surveillance Hike – The remote beaches of Anegada’s northern shore are rarely visited by anyone. Students will collectively hike the entire beach in search of turtle nests and unique items that have washed ashore. Previous GoBeyond groups have found messages in bottles, entire boats, and even products from China.
Anegada Iguana Program Community Service Projects

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 8-11)

via Anegada
  • Rock Iguana Headstart Facility – Anegada is home to one of the world’s most endangered species. The Anegada Rock Iguana used to thrive on the island until humans introduced invasive predators. We work with the National Parks Trust to feed the animals, maintain their grounds, and find nests in the wild.
Tag Sea Turtles Community Service Project For High School Students

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 8-11)

via Anegada
  • Rodeo Style – Since the water around Anegada is too shallow for traditional methods of catching turtles, we enlist local guides to help us catch turtles their way. Don’t hesitate, because you won’t be able to catch the turtle without the element of surprise!
Sunset Flotilla
Teenage Service Adventure
Teen Adventure Service Sailing
Sailing Service Program For High School Programs British Virgin Islands

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 12-21)

via North Tortola & Jost Van Dyke
  • During the winter months, the northern shore of Tortola is pummeled by frequent squalls and fierce swells but during our time there, the lack of development and steady breeze makes for some hauntingly beautiful views and fantastic sailing.
Summer Program Sail Caribbean Community Service

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 12-21)

via North Tortola & Jost Van Dyke
  • Local Youth Organizations – Despite growing up on an island, many youth in the BVI rarely have the opportunity to explore their territory via sailboat. We team up with the Jost Van Dyke Preservation Society and the BVI Youth Empowerment Project to buddy up with local students and take them out for the day. GoBeyond students can coordinate everything from painting murals to a fun day at the beach – it’s the interaction that counts.
Learn To Sail Earn Community Service Hours Caribbean

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 12-21)

via North Tortola & Jost Van Dyke
  • Hike Mount Sage – Conquer the BVI’s highest peak with your team as you climb from sea level to 1,700 feet (not included in third session itinerary).
Environmental Community Service Summer Program For Teens

Preserving Paradise Itinerary (Days 12-21)

via North Tortola & Jost Van Dyke
  • Ocean Conservancy Cleanups – Much of the coastline in this part of the BVI is rarely visited. As a result, the garbage that washes ashore can give us a clear idea of just how much plastic is actually in the ocean. GoBeyond doesn’t only clean up the beaches but also contributes data to an international organization that monitors the amount of trash in the ocean. For science!
ActionQuest brochure icon
  • Get Our Free Online Brochure

    Full of detailed information about our adventures, staff, and FAQs for you to access anytime.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Best Summer Camp Ever

Time to Say Goodbye

The best way to explain what it means to say goodbye on the Preserving Paradise environmental camp is to use the words of one of our past students, parents or staff members…

I created unbreakable bonds with my shipmates like I had never experienced with anyone else before. Living so closely with fifteen different people, all from fifteen different places with fifteen different perspectives on life has given me a much broader view of the world. One I will take with me for the rest of my life. ”

Alli C. / Fonda, NY

Need More Information?

Partner Organizations

Preserving Paradise is a focused community service program run through our sister program GoBeyond Student Travel. In addition to the incredible BVI experience, you’ll have the chance to work alongside some of these organizations during our summer volunteer camps.

Association Reef Keepers Affiliate Logo

Association of Reef Keepers

  • The Association of Reef Keepers seeks to manage the natural resources of the British Virgin Islands in a sustainable manner. It was formed specifically to address the growing environmental stresses that the British Virgin Islands are experiencing.
Visar Affiliate Logo

Virgin Islands Search and Rescue

  • VISAR is a voluntary organization dedicated to saving life at sea. It is the officially recognized search and rescue service in the British Virgin Islands, where it provides 24-hour cover every day of the year in close cooperation with the Royal British Virgin Islands police, fire and ambulance services.
Bvi Npt Affiliate Logo

National Parks Trust

  • The mission of the BVI National Parks Trust is to preserve and manage designated natural and cultural areas in order to improve the quality of life in the British Virgin Islands.

Need to know

Is this adventure right for me?

On Preserving Paradise, you will become a seasoned sailor and earn up to 80 hours of community service. The service projects include turtle population studies, mangrove reforestation, beach clean-ups, and educational initiatives for local school children. The hours you dedicate to the BVI will satisfy any school requirement and you’ll also be helping to ensure that others can enjoy the BVI for years to come.

How many people go on this adventure?

Preserving Paradise generally consists of two catamarans, but regularly sails along or near the Vega Voyage, our largest program. The Vega Voyage has up to eight boats sailing together in a flotilla, each with 8 to 12 shipmates aboard. It’s a lot of fun sailing as part of a larger fleet where you can interact with many other teens and staff from all over the world. For other advantages of Flotilla Sailing, please refer to the specific sections in the general FAQ’s.

How do you split up the ages across the boats?

Given that we sometimes have 2 yachts sailing together, this allows us to berth students aboard based upon their age and grade. Within the fast paced and team-oriented environment onboard, age differences seem like less of a factor than they might at a typical summer camp. Please contact us if you have any specific considerations in this regard.

What type of boat will I be on?

Preserving Paradise typically runs aboard double-hulled sail yachts (catamarans). We use only the finest charter yachts available, all of which are in the 50-foot range. Each vessel has 5 cabins, a large salon which converts to a 6th cabin, and 4 full bathrooms (heads). The world’s largest charter company, Moorings/Sunsail, maintains all of our yachts to the highest standard.

ActionQuest adventure program sailing catamaran

Learn more about our vessels

Where do we sleep?

From the moment you arrive, you’ll move aboard your yacht and live on board full-time. It’s true to say that living on a sailing vessel is much tighter than being at home, yet this close community environment is where so much of the experience is created.

All of our vessels have 5 cabins and a large salon that converts to a 6th, so in a pinch there’s room for us all to sleep down below if it should rain, but, for the most part, the evenings are clear and dry and most of us like to sleep out on deck, swinging in a hammock under the stars.

Who will be my staff?

AQ is proud to attract and recruit the best in our field. Our summer staff includes professional maritime captains and medical professionals. Above all, we hire responsible and experienced facilitators and educators. All members of our team are dynamic, multi-talented, and passionate individuals with a devotion and commitment to the safety and experience of our students.

Two or three staff members live with you aboard your vessel full-time. All staff are CPR and First Aid certified. There will be your skipper, and other staff members may hold certifications in professional sailing, Wilderness First Aid or EMT, or have a Marine Science background.

Learn more about the team

What's the food like?

At AQ we strive for nutritious, and delicious meals. Student chefs of the day prepare meals onboard with help from the staff using a mixture of goods we have imported and local fresh food we pick up onshore every few days. On occasion throughout the trip, students will have the option to eat at a restaurant during shore time to sample the local offerings. Living onboard a boat for three weeks in the British Virgin Islands poses its own difficulties in terms of provisioning and cooking but when it’s all said and done, meal-time is often a highlight of each day.

During the application process, families can inform us of any dietary allergies or restrictions. We are usually able to accommodate vegetarians, vegans etc., as well as various food allergies. However, if your student has a severe allergy to peanuts or other common substances, please call our office to discuss the options.

Sample Menu Download

What do I need to bring?

Given that all students will be living aboard a sailboat for the duration of their adventure, we recommend that you keep things simple and avoid over packing. Students are given the opportunity to do laundry once in the middle of the trip, so there’s no need to pack several weeks’ worth of clothing.

Our hope is that families will have minimal purchases prior to the trip, so we’ve compiled our packing lists in a way that you’ll find most of what you need in your closet at home. Around mid to late March, we make available our Pre-Trip Packet to enrolled students, which contains a detailed packing list for this year’s adventures. If you’d like to see last year’s packing list as an example, you can download it here.

Packing List Download

Nitty Gritty

Flights

Are flights included in the tuition?

Since students join us from all over the world, the cost of transportation to and from the British Virgin Islands is not included in the program tuition.

Who should we contact to book travel?

Helping to coordinate our students’ travel is of vital importance – and a mammoth task! For this reason, we strongly suggest that all families start by contacting our travel coordinator:

Leah Hernandez – AQ and GB Travel Coordinator
Tel: +1.281.528.7727
Toll Free: 800.329.9000
Email: leahctn68@hotmail.com

Even if you are not originating in the U.S., Leah will be able to provide options and guidance.

How do we get there?

Our recommended route is via St. Thomas (STT) in the USVI although students also have the option of flying to Beef Island (EIS).

Does AQ provide support on travel days?

Yes. We understand that travel days can be stressful for both parents and students, so no matter what time of the day or night, our office team actively monitors and supports our participants during travel. We require students to travel with a mobile phone with domestic data capability so we can monitor their progress and communicate directly if necessary.

For students flying via St Thomas, ActionQuest arranges for a staff member to assist with the transfer to Tortola via ferry. After arrival in Tortola, students are met at the ferry dock by more of ActionQuest’s professional staff, then collectively continue onto a taxi that takes them to the boats.

Looking for more detailed information on travel?

Visit the travel page

Travel Docs & Vaccinations

Travel Docs & Visas

All students traveling to the BVI need to have a passport which is valid for a minimum of three months after the date of departure from the BVI. Visitors from certain countries other than the US, UK and Canada may require visas.

For the most up-to-date and thorough information, please visit travel.state.gov. Students traveling on non-U.S. passports should verify passport and visa requirements for your nationality by contacting your local British embassy or consulate or the nearest BVI Tourist Board Office.

One important point to mention is that most students joining us in the BVI do so by flying via St. Thomas, which is part of the US Virgin Islands. This means that those students not flying on a US or Canadian passport need to consider whether they need to apply for a U.S. visa or ESTA (Electronic System for Travel Authorization). Please call us with any questions.

Vaccinations

For visiting the BVI, the CDC recommends that all travelers are up-to-date on routine vaccinations that most of us had as children (measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine, diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine, varicella (chickenpox) vaccine, polio vaccine.

That said, we understand that families have varying opinions on vaccinations. Some greatly desire the precaution; others prefer to avoid possible side effects of certain medications. Coupled with the fact that each student has unique medical considerations known best by his or her doctor, AQ does not supply medical advice. For this reason, we recommend that all families refer back to the expertise of the CDC from time to time (wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel), their health care providers, and/or a travel clinic to gain the most up to date information.

Tuition

AQ Tuition Covers the following:

  • All accommodation and group meals once the adventure is underway
  • Vessel charter and related government fees
  • Staff, local guides, and tips
  • The use of all sailing, and water sports equipment (except for wetsuits, if needed)

Not included in the AQ tuition:

  • Air transportation and related travel expenses (baggage, taxes, visas etc.)
  • Personal spending money

Discounts and Savings

  • A one-time total tuition fee deduction of 5% is granted for any two adventures or for two or more students from the same family.
  • Any two consecutive programs may be joined to form one extended course. In the interim between programs, students stay with staff. The total cost is determined by combining the cost of each program and subtracting the 5% extended course discount. (This discount also applies toward any trips adjoining our sister program GoBeyond.) ActionQuest and/or GoBeyond enrollment for any two programs in the same summer will be considered as a single extended program in the event of withdrawal or dismissal from the trip at any time.

Itinerary

Living in the moment

Though the fundamentals of our adventures don’t change, specific logistics evolve as we get closer to the summer and then day by day based on weather. The animated map along with the adventure overview portions on this page should give all families a basic understanding of the kinds of activities we do on the voyage. We also suggest looking through last summer’s Trip Logs for a more detailed travel log created by the students.

With this in mind, we encourage all participants to “live in the moment”. Traveling by boat requires flexibility and a willingness to accept adversity and change. We hope you’ll take any bumps in your stride, and enjoy the adventure!

Are flights included in the tuition?

Since students join us from all over the world, the cost of transportation to and from the British Virgin Islands is not included in the program tuition.

Who should we contact to book travel?

Helping to coordinate our students’ travel is of vital importance – and a mammoth task! For this reason, we strongly suggest that all families start by contacting our travel coordinator:

Leah Hernandez – AQ and GB Travel Coordinator
Tel: +1.281.528.7727
Toll Free: 800.329.9000
Email: leahctn68@hotmail.com

Even if you are not originating in the U.S., Leah will be able to provide options and guidance.

How do we get there?

Our recommended route is via St. Thomas (STT) in the USVI although students also have the option of flying to Beef Island (EIS).

Does AQ provide support on travel days?

Yes. We understand that travel days can be stressful for both parents and students, so no matter what time of the day or night, our office team actively monitors and supports our participants during travel. We require students to travel with a mobile phone with domestic data capability so we can monitor their progress and communicate directly if necessary.

For students flying via St Thomas, ActionQuest arranges for a staff member to assist with the transfer to Tortola via ferry. After arrival in Tortola, students are met at the ferry dock by more of ActionQuest’s professional staff, then collectively continue onto a taxi that takes them to the boats.

Looking for more detailed information on travel?

Visit the travel page

Travel Docs & Visas

All students traveling to the BVI need to have a passport which is valid for a minimum of three months after the date of departure from the BVI. Visitors from certain countries other than the US, UK and Canada may require visas.

For the most up-to-date and thorough information, please visit travel.state.gov. Students traveling on non-U.S. passports should verify passport and visa requirements for your nationality by contacting your local British embassy or consulate or the nearest BVI Tourist Board Office.

One important point to mention is that most students joining us in the BVI do so by flying via St. Thomas, which is part of the US Virgin Islands. This means that those students not flying on a US or Canadian passport need to consider whether they need to apply for a U.S. visa or ESTA (Electronic System for Travel Authorization). Please call us with any questions.

Vaccinations

For visiting the BVI, the CDC recommends that all travelers are up-to-date on routine vaccinations that most of us had as children (measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine, diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine, varicella (chickenpox) vaccine, polio vaccine.

That said, we understand that families have varying opinions on vaccinations. Some greatly desire the precaution; others prefer to avoid possible side effects of certain medications. Coupled with the fact that each student has unique medical considerations known best by his or her doctor, AQ does not supply medical advice. For this reason, we recommend that all families refer back to the expertise of the CDC from time to time (wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel), their health care providers, and/or a travel clinic to gain the most up to date information.

AQ Tuition Covers the following:

  • All accommodation and group meals once the adventure is underway
  • Vessel charter and related government fees
  • Staff, local guides, and tips
  • The use of all sailing, and water sports equipment (except for wetsuits, if needed)

Not included in the AQ tuition:

  • Air transportation and related travel expenses (baggage, taxes, visas etc.)
  • Personal spending money

Discounts and Savings

  • A one-time total tuition fee deduction of 5% is granted for any two adventures or for two or more students from the same family.
  • Any two consecutive programs may be joined to form one extended course. In the interim between programs, students stay with staff. The total cost is determined by combining the cost of each program and subtracting the 5% extended course discount. (This discount also applies toward any trips adjoining our sister program GoBeyond.) ActionQuest and/or GoBeyond enrollment for any two programs in the same summer will be considered as a single extended program in the event of withdrawal or dismissal from the trip at any time.

Living in the moment

Though the fundamentals of our adventures don’t change, specific logistics evolve as we get closer to the summer and then day by day based on weather. The animated map along with the adventure overview portions on this page should give all families a basic understanding of the kinds of activities we do on the voyage. We also suggest looking through last summer’s Trip Logs for a more detailed travel log created by the students.

With this in mind, we encourage all participants to “live in the moment”. Traveling by boat requires flexibility and a willingness to accept adversity and change. We hope you’ll take any bumps in your stride, and enjoy the adventure!