Tortola  has the best and most reliable surfing of any of the Virgin Islands . On weekends surfers from St. John  and St. Thomas  often sojourn to Tortola in search of waves. The surf is generally up during the winter, from December through March, when cold fronts come off the East Coast of North America and create swells along Tortola’s Atlantic shore. September and October can be good months as well, but they are less reliable.
The best surfing beaches are Apple Bay  on the west end, Josiah’s Bay  in the east, and Cane Garden Bay . Apple Bay sees reliable two- to four-foot waves during the season and is probably the most heavily surfed location on Tortola. Josiah’s Bay is popular among longboarders and is considered “on” when it has one- to three-foot waves. Josiah’s is known for its dangerous riptide, so be careful in rougher conditions.
“The Point” at the far eastern end of Cane Garden Bay is mythic among surfers. When it’s on, Cane Garden Bay delivers six- to seven-foot waves that last up to 200 yards. Cane Garden Bay is on only about a dozen days a year; when it is, word spreads quickly among all who surf.
Surfers also sometimes paddle to Cooten Bay, west of Josiah’s Bay, for a change of scenery and nice meaty waves.
Island Surf and Sail (Nanny Cay Marina, 284/494-0123, www.bviwatertoys.com ) offers surf equipment rentals and lessons.