Honeymoon Bay, St. John Virgin Islands
(Excerpted from St. John Beach Guide)
Walking along these forest paths gives you the chance to experience the beauty and tranquility of the unspoiled interior of St. John. Although the hike is relatively easy, there is enough of a physical challenge to make your arrival at the beach, followed by a cooling dip in the crystal-clear Caribbean, a sensuous and welcome reward.
Consequently, if you like the idea of taking a trail to the beach, or if you want to experience the excellent snorkeling described for Salomon Bay, but prefer a venue offering a more traditional experience in terms of beach attire, Honeymoon Bay is a fine alternative. It lies just to the east of Salomon and enjoys the same natural beauty and fantastic views. The snorkeling reef fringes the rocky point between the two bays and is just as easily accessible from either beach.
Shortest Walk (steep)
Immediately on the right hand side, is a parking area for approximately four vehicles. Park here if you drove. The Caneel Hill Spur Trail intersects Route 20 and is marked with a sign that reads: "To Lind Point Trail." Take this trail north and downhill bearing to the right at the Lind Point Trail junction.
There is a popular but untrue rumor concerning how Lovango Cay got its name. According to the story, there was once a brothel on the island and sailors would "love and go." Actually, Lovango, Mingo and Congo Cays were named after sections of Africa from which slaves were brought to the islands.
The three small cays in the middle of the channel between St. John and Lovango, Henley Ram Goat and Rata Cays collectively are called the Durloe Cays after Pieter Durloe the founder of the Klein Caneel Bay Plantation (today called Caneel Bay).
Henley Cay was once known as Women's Cay because during the slave revolt of 1733, surviving white women and children were placed there to await rescue and transportation to St. Thomas. The surviving white men made Durloe's plantation at Caneel Bay their stronghold, which they succeeded in defending against the rebels.
In the 1940s and 1950s Henley, Ramgoat and Rata Cays (The Durloe Cays) were owned by Roger Humphrey, the Marine commandant of the Virgin Islands during World War II. He built the concrete storehouse whose ruins are presently found on Henley Cay. In 1947 Humprey's son, a navy pilot, flew his aircraft over Henley Cay. He apparently was executing some air acrobatics, which he miscalculated, flew too low, crashed into the cay and died. This was the first time a plane had crashed anywhere near St. John. The wreckage of the plane can still be seen on top of the island.
After his son's death Humphrey lost interest in further development of Henley and rarely returned there. In 1948 he rented Henley Cay to Robert and Nancy Gibney, the parents of the present owners of Gibney Beach, who lived there for about a year before building their permanent home at Hawksnest.