Excerpted from St. John Off The Beaten
2006 Gerald Singer
Bay Road runs between the beach at Francis Bay and the Leinster
Bay Trail. The distance between these points is about a half
The Leinster Bay Road accesses Francis
Bay Beach, the entrance to the Maho Bay Campground, Francis
Bay Trail, Mary Point School, Annaberg Sugar Mill and Leinster
The low-lying coastal flatlands bordering the Leinster Bay
Road provide ideal conditions for the poisonous manchineel
tree, one of which is marked by a National Park Service information
The sap from the leaves, the bark or
the fruit of this tree can be irritating to the skin. Even
standing under the tree in the rain may cause skin irritations.
The round green fruit of this tree is also poisonous. On
one of Columbus' voyages, a crew member sampled the seemingly
edible fruit and died. Thereafter, the fruit was nicknamed “death apple”.
There are several places along the road where you can walk
out to the narrow beach and observe the shallow reef flats.
These reef tops are the habitat for wading birds, small fish
and many species of marine invertebrates. The shallow areas
called flats are also popular with fisherman testing their
skills against the skittish and hard-fighting bonefish.
The mostly paved road hugs the coast of beautiful Leinster
Bay where you will enjoy superb views from several places along
Also, you’ll be able to observe
land crabs, wading birds and marine organisms in the mangrove
forests and shallow reef flats adjoining the road.
The National Park offers this opportunity to learn about coastal
ecology and marine life in Leinster Bay. For more information
contact the VI National Park online at www.nps.gov/viis or