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Horseback Riding

St. John is a stunning Caribbean island full of diverse and thriving wildlife. Thrilling to discover and witness in their natural habitat, what some visitors to this gorgeous destination might not realize is that there is also a population of wild donkeys that have called the island home since the region’s plantation days. While once utilized for carrying workloads and chartering children to school up until the 1970’s, wild donkeys roaming the island today can unfortunately struggle on their own without proper assistance. The Carolina Corral is a St. John solution to helping island wildlife while providing a place for visitors to come lend a hand.

History with Heart

Carolina Corral on Coral Harbor was developed in 1993 by an Ohio native who had recently relocated to St. John. With a passion for horses, Dana Bartlett began this island animal rescue with two wild donkeys. From there, the corral continued to grow and today hosts a multitude of animals either brought in as rescues or given up voluntarily as a means of achieving proper care. Animals onsite include horses, donkeys, chickens, ducks, goats, sheep, dogs and cats. A sanctuary for domestic animals with nowhere else to go, Dana has opened up the corral to visitors looking for a meaningful visit during their time in St. John. It’s definitely one of the best things to do in St John Virgin Islands.

Options for Visiting

A stop at Carolina Corral is educational, fun and inspiring. Morning sessions are dedicated to training visitors on how to properly care for these large, domestic animals as well as tips and tricks for caring for smaller domestic animals like cats and dogs. Basic skills such as brushing and feeding are demonstrated and guests will eventually have a chance to try for themselves. Beyond grooming, Dana invites visitors to learn about the many animals onsite and leads trail rides for those excited for a scenic tour on horseback. Many afternoons, guests are treated to a wagon ride led by a team of wild donkeys that Dana has personally trained. Evening feeding sessions are open to participants as well and all activities can be adjusted to fit the comfort level of visiting guests. Those with a heart for animal rescue can donate to the Carolina Corral or simply plan on lending a helping hand next time they’re in St. John.

Heart and Home at the Carolina Carrol

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