Paradise and Preserve on Necker Island

Alexia Lucas
Aug 29, 2018 · 4 min read

Just north of Virgin Gorda in the British Virgin Islands is a little-known island surrounded by the turquoise waters of the Caribbean — it’s called Necker Island. Now home to the billionaire, Sir Richard Branson, this private resort has always intrigued those sailing by, hoping to catch a glimpse of the lifestyles of the rich and famous.

📷David Ryan // Waggoner Guide: BVI

Given the beauty of Necker Island, it’s not surprising to discover that it is also home to many diverse marine and wildlife species. While Branson works to rebuild after the devastation of Hurricane Irma, his focus also lies in helping the wildlife of the BVI recover by creating a sanctuary in which they can once again thrive.

Although the island is off-limits to the public, Branson now allows tours of his sanctuary eco-village which he entrusts to his good friend “Gumption” through his See It Clear Tours. Imagine adding that to your charter itinerary! Now it’s possible to have the rare opportunity to see Necker Island from land and experience the Necker Island Nature Tour up-close and personal!

What Magical Experience Awaits You on your Necker Island Nature Tour?

Source: 📷David Ryan // Waggoner Guide: BVI

First, let’s meet our tour guide — Allington “Gumption” Creque — friend to Sir Branson and your personal escort onto Necker island who will teach you all about the eco-village and the animals that live there. Discover the many different species of Lemur; cute furry creatures who are as curious about you, as you are of them. Lemurs are an extremely rare breed of mammal on the brink of extinction, but through the work of Branson and his conservation efforts, these animals and others are able to thrive again in this eco-village.

Source: 📷David Ryan // Waggoner Guide: BVI

During this two hour tour you might even get the chance to feed the Lemur, but be sure to hide your cell phones — Lemurs have been known to snatch them from pockets. It’ll be gone before you ever realized it was missing!

You also won’t want to miss the opportunity to pet the giant tortoises that mill about the island or see the beautiful flamingos that flock to Gumption as he arrives for their midday feeding. Take pictures of stunning tropical birds, many of which have been reintroduced to the island after being gone for more than 100 years. In addition, Necker Island is home to parrots, peacocks, and cockatoos (to name just a few). It’s truly an experience of a lifetime, as well as a unique and fun learning opportunity for adults and kids of all ages!

Source: 📷David Ryan // Waggoner Guide: BVI
Source: 📷David Ryan // Waggoner Guide: BVI

So Just Who is this Gumption and Where Do I Find Him to Schedule a Tour?

I’d love to tell you everything about him but I don’t want to spoil the surprise. Suffice it to say that Gumption is a very entertaining and intriguing individual who was blessed by Sir Branson with exclusive rights to lead tours of Necker Island. Gumption’s dedication to the environment, his knowledge and willingness to share all that he knows with anyone that wants to learn makes him perfect for this role.

Gumption is busy re-building his Glass Bottom Boat business after Hurricane Irma but he is happy to take time from his busy schedule to tour Necker Island with your group. Details of the tour can be found here Gumption’s Necker Island Nature Tour. Tours are given from 10:00 to 12:00, Monday through Saturday. They do ask that you have a group of at least six and make sure to pack your sneakers or walking shoes as flip-flops are not allowed. The cost of the tour is $90.00 per adult and $50.00 per child. All of the proceeds go toward building this growing sanctuary for even more animal species.

Getting to Necker Island

Access to Necker Island is only by boat. Once you have secured your reservation, Gumption will give you specific instructions as to where to meet him. No one is allowed on the island without his escort. Be certain to consult the charts as the approach to Necker Island is very tricky due to the coral reef. If you are instructed by Gumption or the Necker Island Team to pick up a mooring ball, it’s best to take a downwind mooring ball that is not too close to the construction barge dock so as not to get in the way of the island’s reconstruction efforts.

Book your next charter with Virgin Yacht Charters and don’t forget to add the Necker Island Gumption Tour to your Itinerary!

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