Cruising, St. Maarten, Travel

St. Maarten: What’s not to Love?

St. Maarten: What’s not to Love?

St. Maarten is found on the northeastern end of the Caribbean. Just south of Anguilla, east of Puerto Rico, and slightly north of St. Kitts. This tiny island is the smallest island in the world with two separate and distinctive countries occupying its land. On the north side of the island is St. Martin, which is owned by the French, and the south side, Sint Maarten, is owned by the Netherlands.

Legend has it, that in 1648, the French and the Dutch wanted to put a stop to the ever-changing boundary line so they decided to partition the island once and for all. Members from each territory gathered on the north and south ends of the island and were told to walk towards the center of the island. The new boundary line would form wherever the two groups met. There was only one rule: they were not allowed to run. There are different versions as to what happened during the partitioning–sickness, poisoning, cheating, running–whatever happened, St. Maarten is split 60/40, with the French claiming more of the island.

On our trip, we stayed on the Dutch side of the island which is why I refer to St. Maarten as St. Maarten, and not St. Martin. (Heck we should play a drinking game with the word St.Maarten/Martin, you’d be tipsy by now, right?) 😉

By the time we reached this beautiful island, we were exhausted from our week in the sun. We wanted to find a relaxing beach to enjoy our last full day of vacation and let our cares blow away in the breeze. We decided on Great Bay Beach.

Even though we were right in Phillpsburg, the capital of St. Maarten, the beach and surrounding mountains were beautiful. Small homes and structures dotted the green hills above the ocean, and seeing more mountains behind the close hills, left me with a sense of wanting to explore more of the island. The water was the prettiest shade of blue, it wasn’t as clear as I’d hoped, but the color was magnificent. We rented beach chairs, bought a bucket of Carib beers, and relaxed the day away.

Until next time, St. Maarten.

15 thoughts on “St. Maarten: What’s not to Love?”

  1. Hi Krystle! So glad you had a great time! But I think you were on Great Bay and not Grand Case if you stayed In Philipsburg. Grand Case is on the north side of the island, on St. Martin, and a bit of a taxi ride. Most taxis don’t want to take cruisers there because it is quite a hike. I am a Caribbean destination travel expert so I’m a bit of a stickler for these things. Hope you understand! I have loved all of your posts. You are much like my clients, so it is great for me to understand what you/they like and what you/they do while on these cruises! Thank you!

    1. Hi Susan! Thank you, you are absolutely correct. I’m happy that someone is paying attention and reading my posts. Great Bay…Grand Case, so close, yet so far. 🙂 My apologies…

      As you are a Caribbean travel expert, I’m curious as to your favorite location in the Caribbean? Please share! 🙂

      1. LOL You ask the tough questions, don’t you? I love them all! As you know, each destination has its own attractions. As a cruise ship port I would have to pick Grand Cayman because it is so beautiful, convenient, and the people are lovely. Fabulous beaches and you can snorkel right from shore. And for a week-long stay (or at least a private day excursion) Barbados gets my vote. In and around the port doesn’t do much for me, but the rest of the island has fabulous beaches, lots of history, English flavor, many rum shops 🙂 , great food, picturesque Bathsheba on the wild east coast, and Harrison Caves, too…..I feel a blog post welling up in me! Which is your favorite?

        1. I do agree that each destination has something special about it. My favorites so far are: St. John, St. Lucia, and Kauai. Maui is up there as well. I love the jungle-y islands. 🙂 Looking forward to reading that blog post!

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