The Best Waterside Restaurants in Tortola, British Virgin Islands

Across with its azure shores and gleaming sands, Tortola has some amazing waterside restaurants to enjoy
Across with its azure shores and gleaming sands, Tortola has some amazing waterside restaurants to enjoy | © Massimo Borchi / Getty Images
Miranda Blazeby

Blessed with sheltered harbours and deserted bays, Tortola is the charter boat capital of the Caribbean and the capital island of the entire British Virgin Islands. Along with appetising scenery, this volcanic island has a great selection of restaurants to rouse the senses. The options range from fine dining restaurants to beachside barbecue shacks – we’ve hand-picked out some of the best waterside restaurants in Tortola, British Virgin Islands.

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The Sugar Mill overlooking Little Apple Bay

The Apple Bay Waterfront and Sugar Mill Hotel Restaurant in Tortola, British Virgin Islands

Originally a 17th-century sugar mill, this four-star boutique hotel is tucked away in a remote spot overlooking Apple Bay. Fully open to non-hotel guests, the Sugar Mill offers a taste of fine dining rarely seen in other Caribbean restaurants – with dishes like scallops in Champagne sauce sharing the menu with Caribbean favourites. Rich with the air of occasion, The Sugar Mill is the perfect spot for toasting the last night of charter.

Overlooking Sir Francis Drake channel and just 10 minutes from Road Town, Brandywine Estate is the perfect spot for yacht spotting. Run by French chef Regis and wife Claudine, the Mediterranean menu is populated with French classics, including moules marinière and lobster thermidor. Call ahead to reserve a mooring ball through the restaurant and kick off the evening with pre-dinner cocktails on the terrace for an unrivalled sunset view.

D’Coal Pot in the village of Carrot Bay

Sitting right at the water’s edge on the northern coast of Tortola, this family-run restaurant offers a true taste of the Caribbean. It may look humble, but D’Coal Pot is an island gem. Run by owner and chef Evelyn, D’Coal Pot offers reasonable prices and decent portions of saltfish fritters, roti and ribs. Get the local lobster if it hasn’t sold out – or reserve one when you make your booking.

Bananakeet Café perched high on Windy Hill

Pick up a mooring ball in Carrot Bay and whisk up Windy Hill in a quick taxi ride for 180º sunset views of neighbouring islands Jost Van Dyke, Great Thatch and Great Tobago. Sip painkiller cocktails to live music and devour salt cod fritters, seafood curry and tuna tacos prepared by legendary Chef Spicy. Arrive early to bag an outdoor table overlooking the bay and make sure you book.

Jeremy’s Kitchen in Trellis Bay

Originally a windsurf school run by local legend Jeremy Wright, Jeremy’s Kitchen sits in the centre of Trellis Bay offering tasty brunches and all-day plates with standout sandwiches – best eaten on the deck in the open air. A hub for charter yachts heading to neighbouring islands, Trellis Bay doesn’t have many mooring balls since hurricane Irma struck in 2017 but does offer sheltered anchorage and plenty of dinghy docks along the shore.

Nigel’s Boom Boom Beach Bar and Grill in Smuggler’s Cove

Located in the beautiful setting of Smuggler’s Cove – perhaps the best beach on Tortola – this beach bar and colourful barbecue shack offers an authentic Caribbean experience. Nigel, the owner, manager and bartender serves up strong painkiller cocktails, famously tasty hot dogs and long tales of the Caribbean. Anchor in the bay but get there early – navigation can be tricky.

Paradise Club on Cane Garden Bay

The liveliest beach bar on the island, the Paradise Club is a short walk from the dinghy dock if you’re moored in Cane Garden Bay and has tables right on the beach. The classic Caribbean menu abounds with tasty burgers and fish tacos to be eaten while gazing upon the Instagram-perfect sunset. As night falls, Paradise Club lights up with firepits, torches and glow lights and hosts a monthly full moon party with psychoactive mushroom tea on offer – don’t worry it’s legal.

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