St. Martin - St. Maarten Travel Guide

Caribbean  #6 in Best Family Vacations in the Caribbean
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Best Things To Do in St. Martin - St. Maarten

Like most Caribbean destinations, St. Martin and St. Maarten is wonderful for relaxing in the sand or playing in the waves, but families take note: St. Martin's beautiful beaches are clothing-optional (especially the tourist favorite, Orient Bay). Vacationers will find bathing suit-clad sunbathers along Simpson Bay and Maho Bay on the Dutch side. Hurricane Irma had a big impact on the island, so repeat visitors might find some favorite places closed or with limited amenities, but the island has made great strides in renovating and repairing the damage. Make sure to set aside time for away-from-the-shore activities – hiking through Pid du Paradis, playing the tables at some of the casinos or shopping for duty-free deals along Front Street.

How we rank Things to Do

Updated May 9, 2018

  • #1
    Orient Bay (St. Martin)
    View all Photos
    #1 in St. Martin - St. Maarten
    Beaches, Free
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND
    Beaches, Free
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND

    Orient Bay Beach was hit hard by Hurricane Irma and is one of the places on the island that recent visitors said was a bit shocking to see, with most of the businesses completely wiped out. That said, they still extol the virtues of the clear waters and fluffy white

    ...Read More »
  • #2
    Sailing, Yachting and Boat Tours
    View all Photos
    #2 in St. Martin - St. Maarten
    Sightseeing, Tours
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND
    Sightseeing, Tours
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND

    Surrounded by the gorgeous Caribbean water on all sides, one of the more popular activities on the island is to get off it! Sailing, kayaking, windsurfing, snorkeling, diving and any other watersport you can imagine is easy enough to schedule, and many companies stand ready to take you out for

    ...Read More »
  • #3
    Cupecoy Beach (St. Maarten)
    View all Photos
    #3 in St. Martin - St. Maarten
    Beaches, Free
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND
    Beaches, Free
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND

    Located on the island's southwest tip, Cupecoy is a set of three beaches surrounded by limestone cliffs. It's also the last beach on the Dutch side before crossing the northern French border. Travelers say the sunsets here have to be seen to be believed, with dramatic views of Saba in

    ...Read More »
  • #4
    Loterie Farm (St. Martin)
    View all Photos
    #4 in St. Martin - St. Maarten
    Sports
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND
    Sports
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND

    Visitors can hike, lounge in a pool cabana or even take a zip line through the treetops on the 135 acres of forest and farmland located near the foot of Pic du Paradis. The farm has made a nice recovery since Hurricane Irma, though recent visitors say that the vegetation is

    ...Read More »
  • #5
    Mullet Bay Beach (St. Maarten)
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    #5 in St. Martin - St. Maarten
    Beaches, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND
    Beaches, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND

    Many call calm and quiet Mullet a decent alternative to the noise and sand blasts of Maho Bay, or to the crowds of the French side's Orient Bay. Along with its clear waters, travelers were pleased with Mullet Bay's soft sand and surfer-ready waves.

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  • #6
    Friar's Bay (St. Martin)
    View all Photos
    #6 in St. Martin - St. Maarten
    Beaches, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND
    Beaches, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND

    Friar's Bay, or Anse des Pères, has a more family-friendly atmosphere than some of the other scantily clad shores of St. Martin. That's because its crystalline waters have gentle, swimmable waves that are easy for children to handle. You can watch your kids play from the beach bars that corral Friar's;

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  • #7
    Dawn Beach (St. Maarten)
    View all Photos
    #7 in St. Martin - St. Maarten
    Beaches, Free
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND
    Beaches, Free
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND

    Located just south of the Dutch/French border, Dawn Beach is famous for two things: One, the amazing sunrises that earned the shoreline its name. And two, clear water that's perfect for snorkeling.  

    ...Read More »
  • #8
    Front Street (St. Maarten)
    View all Photos
    #8 in St. Martin - St. Maarten
    Shopping, Sightseeing, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND
    Shopping, Sightseeing, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND

    Shopping is great throughout the island thanks to its duty-free status, but the best bargains on jewelry, china, electronics and more are found on Front Street in Philipsburg (found on the Dutch side). Should browsing turn to buying, make the Guavaberry Emporium – and its primo-potent liqueur – your first

    ...Read More »
  • #9
    Maho Bay (St. Maarten)
    View all Photos
    #9 in St. Martin - St. Maarten
    Beaches, Free
    TYPE
    Less than 1 hour
    TIME TO SPEND
    Beaches, Free
    TYPE
    Less than 1 hour
    TIME TO SPEND

    Are you looking to relax in tranquility? Keep looking – Maho Bay beckons to amateur photographers, aviation fanatics and curious thrill-seekers. The southwestern beach's fame is due to its unusual proximity to the Princess Juliana International Airport. Every afternoon, travelers love to stand on the sands to take pictures of

    ...Read More »
  • #10
    Pic du Paradis (St. Martin)
    View all Photos
    #10 in St. Martin - St. Maarten
    Natural Wonders, Sightseeing, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND
    Natural Wonders, Sightseeing, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND

    You can drive or take a taxi up Pic du Paradis mountain's 1,492 feet for a heart-stopping view of all of St. Martin/St. Maarten, as well as the surrounding islands of Anguilla, Saba and St. Eustatius. Also known as Paradise Peak, the mountain was a hit with recent visitors, who said

    ...Read More »
  • Fort Louis
    View all Photos
    Monuments and Memorials, Sightseeing, Free
    TYPE
    Less than 1 hour
    TIME TO SPEND
    Monuments and Memorials, Sightseeing, Free
    TYPE
    Less than 1 hour
    TIME TO SPEND

    Read More »

  • St. Martin National Nature Reserve
    View all Photos
    Hiking, Recreation, Sightseeing, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND
    Hiking, Recreation, Sightseeing, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND

    Read More »

  • The Butterfly Farm
    View all Photos
    Sightseeing, Tours
    TYPE
    Less than 1 hour
    TIME TO SPEND
    Sightseeing, Tours
    TYPE
    Less than 1 hour
    TIME TO SPEND

    Read More »

Explore More of St. Martin - St. Maarten

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