If you’re planning a yacht charter to the British Virgin Islands, you should consider the four different sailing seasons:
My recommendation? The best time to visit the British Virgin Islands is during shoulder season one (April to June). We enjoy predictable weather, longer days, steady wind speeds, fewer crowds, and cheaper charter prices.
Below, I summarize each to help you make your decision. If you want to learn more about weather and marine resources for the British Virgin Islands, check out this post.
BVI Climate and Average Weather by Month
Wind Speed (kts)
Avg. High Temp.
Avg. Water Temp.
BVI high season (December to March)
This is the busiest and most expensive time of the year. Hurricane season is over, and the annual pilgrimage of cruising boats has made it’s way from mainland U.S. and Europe to enjoy the warm Caribbean winter.
Expect crowded mooring fields and frustrated skippers who lost the Boatyball lottery.
Days are shorter (~11 hours vs ~13 hours in the summer).
Most notably, you can expect the Christmas Winds: several days of strong winds (15-30 knots) created by strong high pressure systems in the Atlantic. Make sure you know how to reef those sails!
Wind is usually out of the E to NE and less precipitation falls this time of year.
BVI shoulder season 1 (April to June)
This is my favorite and I believe the best time to visit the British Virgin Islands for sailing trips. We’ve been to the BVIs 3x in May. The crowds have thinned out somewhat and the weather has become more settled.
Expect easy 10-15 knots from the E to SE and an occasional shower to cool things off.
BVI peak hurricane season (July to October)
It can be hot, the trade winds lessen (5-15 knots), and tropical mischief can be brewing.
But, you might have the place to yourself. On the flip side, however, some establishments are closed, so keep that in mind if you are planning to hop around the beach bars.
This is the wet season thanks to developing low pressure systems.
BVI shoulder season 2 (November)
This is my second favorite time to sail in the Caribbean and the British Virgin Islands.
Again, the crowds haven’t arrived yet and the weather tends to be settled – similar to April-June.
Trades blow 15-20 knots with wind direction from the E to NE.
The biggest downside of this time of year is the shorter. It can make a difference if you plan to spend long days on the water. Otherwise, not a big deal!