Kingdom of Netherlands / Dutch Caribbean

Sint Maarten

Language Dutch, English
Local Time
Currency US Dollar (USD), Florin (ANG)
Weather

Nicknamed: the Friendly Island

We are in the North East of the Caribbean and 190 miles east of Puerto Rico. This island is divided in a 40% southern part owned by the Kingdom of Netherlands and a 60% northern of the French Republic. The Dutch part counts over 40,000 of population.

Philipsburg is the capital of Dutch St. Maarten and is also the main city on the island. It has two main streets, Front Street (Voorstraat) and Back Street (Achterstraat). They are connected by numerous streets always full of people and mainly full of duty-free shops, cafes and courtyards overflowing with flowers.

Sint Maarten has unusual scenery, located on a small stretch of land between Great Bay, on the south coast, and the Great Salt Pond. It’s the reference port for hundreds of many ships, which satisfies the main need of passengers who arrive ashore either to enjoy nature or to shop. That’s why it became one of the busiest port of the Caribbean.

What to see & what to do

Do not miss the beaches of St. Maarten starting from Great Bay, a half-mile sand crescent in front of Philipsburg. Beyond the promontory of Fort Amsterdam, the Dutch fortress of 1630 with a beautiful display of historical finds, you can follow the coast by car and reach Maho Beach. This is one of the most famous one in the world, that probably you have seen in picture before. Looking at a Boeing 747 landing at the beach, it only happens once. Last but not least, one of the best panorama can be enjoyed at the Rockland Estate with trilling zip line and cable car adventures.

Beaches

Anse Marcel Beach

30 min car from the cruise port. If you already know the Island and you wanna discover a new secluded and remarkable spot, Happy Bay Beach is definitely the place to visit. In general if you like to go away from the crowd or you are in search of a romantic day, this is the one. A french restaurant is available here, where food and service are usually appreciated. On the north side is also good for snorkeling and turtles are also spotted sometimes.

Cupecoy Bay Beach

35 min by car form the cruise port. Following along the coast towards the west end of the Dutch Sint Maarten, Cupecoy Bay reserves a set of 3 beaches, surrounded by limestone cliffs. The entrance is for free and parking places and beach bars are available. The coastline here is home to a multitude of colorful reef fishes, making the place a nice one for snorkel.

Great Bay Beach

10 min walk from the cruise port. This beach is the closest to the cruise port, really comfortable with all the amenities needed. Lots of bars, ice cream shops and restaurants are all along the boardwalk. It's practically in the downtown of Philipsburg, so in the very center of the shopping district as well.

Maho Beach

30 min by car from the Cruise Port. Maho Beach is located just at the bottom of the runway of Princess Juliana International Airport. The crowd here constantly gathers to watch airplanes landing, passing very close above their head. The enchanting beach and the crystal clear sea make Maho an ideal place to spend fun and relaxing days. You can relax with a drink at the Sunset Beach Bar, watching the planes hover above and observe the fantastic colors of the ocean.

Mullet Bay Beach

30 min car from the cruise port. Mullet Beach is the most famous beach of the island, after the popular Maho Beach for its airplane landing experience. But this one is just less crowded and more equipped, thus the perfect place for a day at the beach to enjoy the crystal clear Caribbean water. Sun chairs and umbrellas are for rent at reasonable price. On the northern-end of the beach (right-side looking at the sea), going along the rocks it's a nice place for snorkeling.

Orient Bay Beach

20 min by car from the cruise port. Located on the north-east, French side of the island, this is a long beach with a fee to enter the facility. Plenty of sun chairs and umbrella to rent for a reasonable price. This is a nice place to relax, sun tan, swim and enjoy water sports. The very end is a nude beach, but for the majority is family friendly.

Simpson Bay Beach

35 min by car from the Cruise Port. Simpson Bay is located along one side of the Princess Juliana International Airport and a small but colorful fishing village. It is not in a particularly developed position but a causeway was built a few years ago, which has increased the attractiveness of the lagoon. The beach itself is about three kilometers long and the west beach is fairly quiet; an ideal place to relax and enjoy vacation days for families who want to avoid significant crowds.

Park & Landmarks

Seaside Nature Park

15 Min by car from the Cruise Port. The Seaside Nature Park crosses a beautiful natural coast and combines it with kilometers of paths that wind in and out of the wonderful forest. Here guests can tour, swim on the beach or even ride horses along the miles of trails and even across the water. Horse riding is the main theme of this natural park, however it will be possible to go hiking, kayaking, camping and children's birthday parties are also optional activities.

Sentry Hill adventure park

This park is offering three different adventures: the Flying Dutchman, Schooner Ride & Canopy Zip Line. The panoramic view is spectacular from here. That's why this experience is something different and remarkable. If you already enjoyed your beach day somewhere else during your cruise, consider this as a valid option when coming in Sint Maarten. You won't be disappointed.

Snorkelling

Cupecoy Bay Beach

35 min by car form the cruise port. Following along the coast towards the west end of the Dutch Sint Maarten, Cupecoy Bay reserves a set of 3 beaches, surrounded by limestone cliffs. The entrance is for free and parking places and beach bars are available. The coastline here is home to a multitude of colorful reef fishes, making the place a nice one for snorkel.

Mullet Bay Beach

30 min car from the cruise port. Mullet Beach is the most famous beach of the island, after the popular Maho Beach for its airplane landing experience. But this one is just less crowded and more equipped, thus the perfect place for a day at the beach to enjoy the crystal clear Caribbean water. Sun chairs and umbrellas are for rent at reasonable price. On the northern-end of the beach (right-side looking at the sea), going along the rocks it's a nice place for snorkeling.

Animal Encounter

Seaside Nature Park

15 Min by car from the Cruise Port. The Seaside Nature Park crosses a beautiful natural coast and combines it with kilometers of paths that wind in and out of the wonderful forest. Here guests can tour, swim on the beach or even ride horses along the miles of trails and even across the water. Horse riding is the main theme of this natural park, however it will be possible to go hiking, kayaking, camping and children's birthday parties are also optional activities.

Family

Seaside Nature Park

15 Min by car from the Cruise Port. The Seaside Nature Park crosses a beautiful natural coast and combines it with kilometers of paths that wind in and out of the wonderful forest. Here guests can tour, swim on the beach or even ride horses along the miles of trails and even across the water. Horse riding is the main theme of this natural park, however it will be possible to go hiking, kayaking, camping and children's birthday parties are also optional activities.

Sentry Hill adventure park

This park is offering three different adventures: the Flying Dutchman, Schooner Ride & Canopy Zip Line. The panoramic view is spectacular from here. That's why this experience is something different and remarkable. If you already enjoyed your beach day somewhere else during your cruise, consider this as a valid option when coming in Sint Maarten. You won't be disappointed.

Simpson Bay Beach

35 min by car from the Cruise Port. Simpson Bay is located along one side of the Princess Juliana International Airport and a small but colorful fishing village. It is not in a particularly developed position but a causeway was built a few years ago, which has increased the attractiveness of the lagoon. The beach itself is about three kilometers long and the west beach is fairly quiet; an ideal place to relax and enjoy vacation days for families who want to avoid significant crowds.

Yoda Guy Movie Exhibit

10 min walk from the cruise port. This beautiful museum on the 1st floor was born from an idea by Nick Maley, whose role in creating Yoda's fame in Star Wars earned him the nice nickname "That Yoda Guy". A substantial amount of rotating film memorabilia can be found which may include Han Solo frozen in carbonite, celebrity life films from Marlon Brando to Michael Jackson and a Yoda robotic puppet alongside photos, props, scripts, vintage posters, storyboards.

History & Culture

Fort Amsterdam Philipsburg

10 min by car from the cruise port. after living the car, is just a little walk from Divi Beach Resort. This Fort is an historic fort located on top of the hill between Great Bay and Little Bay. So it rise above the Dutch capital of Philipsburg. It is from 1631, when it was built serving as defense of the colonial port. But just after two years from the construction, it was captured by Spanish. Not much of the original fort is still visible, but still worth a visit.

Fort St. Louis Marigot

Fort Saint-Louis was built on top of Marigot Bay, back during the reign of King Louis XVI in 1789. Now just a ruin is left, but it reserves a wide view consisting of Marigot, Simpson Bay lagoon, Simpson Bay and Anguilla. If visiting Marigot, this is definitely to check out. Mind that going up take a walk for easy hikers, going down is blissful.

Methodist Church

Located in the popular Front Street in Sint Maarten, it’s a 2-storied wood shingled building with neat white shutters. This is the first Methodist Church on the island, dating to 1851.

The Sint Maarten's Museum

10 min by walk from the Cruise Port. This very little museum is free of charge and it's maintained by volunteers. At the entrance you will be introduced to the history of the island by the supervisors, providing glimpses of history, geology, marine biology and anthropology. A small shop is available to bring home some souvenirs. Donation are well accepted as well.

Walking

Boardwalk Philipsburg

10 min walk from the cruise port. This boardwalk is within easy reach from the port and has access to anything you may like for a day visit. The beach of Great Bay, with the possibility to rent sun chairs and umbrella to relax. Walking around to enjoy an ice cream while checking out shops. In fact the famous front street, is just beside the boardwalk.

Marigot Town

25 min from the cruise port. Marigot is the French capital of Saint Martin, the French side of the island. It's a picturesque village where the French Riviera spirit is mixed with a Caribbean twist. Palm trees, cafes, restaurant and the yacht marina make this place pleasant to walk around and eventually do some shopping. It can be alternated with a visit in Philipsburg on the Dutch side, if you are not a beach lover and you like to visit more towns in once. In one day visit, it's still manageable.

Shopping

Front Street Philipsburg

10 min walk from the cruise port. We are in the downtown of the Dutch capital, Philipsburg. Walking around and visiting shops is a must here. In fact there are lots of souvenir stores, jewelries, electronics and great clothing stores. Downtown it's also packed of restaurants and bars of any kind. It's beside the Great Bay Beach, so it becomes really accessible for a full day of beach and shopping.

Philipsburg Cruise Terminal

This is a well organized facility with lots of shops right in front of the pier. If you have very little time to enjoy outside, give it a try.

Best cruise deals: (Cruises are still suspended till 2021)

Pictures and Videos of Sint Maarten

instagram #sintmaarten

No words needed ...

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need a dose of vitamin sea 🌊
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Hello weekend!! We know you will love this view! 👍🏽😍🌴👋🏽☀️🌴🏖🏖😍👍🏽🏖 Photo by belmond_lasamanna 😍👍🏽🏖😍 📸👍🏽 🌴😎👍🏽⛵️🌴☀️🏄🏽📸 👉🏽 TAG US in your SXM PHOTOS to be featured on St Maarten Map. 👉🏽"Subscribe to us our website @ www.stmaartenmap.com to receive our free travel guide.🌴🌴📸👍🏽👍🏽🌴😍👍🏽⛵️ . #saintmartin #grandcase #sea #ocean #Caribbean #boats #excursion #amazing #iamsxm #sintmaarten #love #sxmstrong #views #french #dutch #travel #saintmaarten #stmartin #pinelisland #sxm #stmarteen #sxm #stbarts #anguilla #saba #beautiful #stmaartenmap #marigot #simpsonbay ...

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Let’s keep SXM clean! 👍🏽😍🌴👋🏽☀️🌴🏖🏖😍👍🏽🏖 Photo by wearesxm 😍👍🏽🏖😍 📸👍🏽 🌴😎👍🏽⛵️🌴☀️🏄🏽📸 👉🏽 TAG US in your SXM PHOTOS to be featured on St Maarten Map. 👉🏽"Subscribe to us our website @ www.stmaartenmap.com to receive our free travel guide.🌴🌴📸👍🏽👍🏽🌴😍👍🏽⛵️ . #saintmartin #grandcase #sea #ocean #Caribbean #boats #excursion #amazing #iamsxm #sintmaarten #love #sxmstrong #views #french #dutch #travel #saintmaarten #stmartin #pinelisland #sxm #stmarteen #sxm #stbarts #anguilla #saba #beautiful #stmaartenmap #marigot #simpsonbay ...

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Envie d’un petit déjeuner face à la mer ? On vous attend au sunset café de 8h à 11h, vous pourrez ensuite déguster nos menus brunch et lunch jusqu’à 15h ! 🍳☕️ #restaurant #sunset #restaurantsaintmartin #sintmaarten #sxm #carribean #fwi #seaview #seaviewrestaurant #beach #breakfastwithaview ...

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Les petit-déjeuners les pieds dans le sable vous manquent ? Réservez dès maintenant votre séjour à La Playa ! Nous réouvrons le 16 novembre prochain ☀️
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Missing having breakfast with this view? Book your next stay at La Playa from now on! We will be back on November 16th ☀️
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⁠Talk about perfect timing 📸⁠ mundograndevidacurta⁠
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Tag us Dushi.Guide or Use #dushiguide for a chance to get Featured 📸⁠
📷 Photo Credit: ⁠
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Maho Beach - Sint Maarten 🇸🇽
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This is a crazy place - not one of them I prefer normally. But I have to say ... I had a big smile on my face.
Unfortunately Air France and KLM now use the A330 instead of the 747 to Princess Juliana Airport. This one is Delta Air Lines.
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Yep! Once you visit St Maarten you will fall in love with the island. 👍🏽😍🌴👋🏽☀️🌴🏖🏖😍👍🏽🏖 Photo by aga.sypnievska 😍👍🏽🏖😍 📸👍🏽 🌴😎👍🏽⛵️🌴☀️🏄🏽📸 👉🏽 TAG US in your SXM PHOTOS to be featured on St Maarten Map. 👉🏽"Subscribe to us our website @ www.stmaartenmap.com to receive our free travel guide.🌴🌴📸👍🏽👍🏽🌴😍👍🏽⛵️ . #saintmartin #grandcase #sea #ocean #Caribbean #boats #excursion #amazing #iamsxm #sintmaarten #love #sxmstrong #views #french #dutch #travel #saintmaarten #stmartin #pinelisland #sxm #stmarteen #sxm #stbarts #anguilla #saba #beautiful #stmaartenmap #marigot #simpsonbay ...

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Thursday throwback for this royal pair 💎





🚢 Oasis of the Seas & Anthem of the Seas
📷 cruiseliferick -2019
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🐠🐠🐠 (📸: 2019)
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Little sunshine ☀️ #dwi #simpsonbay #caribbean #sxm #antilles #antillesnéerlandaises #caraibes #saintmartin #sintmaarten #caribbeanlife taigutmon ...

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The beauty you see... if you look around the corner from Baie Rouge 🏝❤️ Pre-plan your visit to St. Maarten - St. Martin: WEARESXM.COM

📍 Baie Rouge, FWI

Great 📸 by wildwaytolife

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St. Maarten/St. Martin
Two Nations
One island
One people.

United we stand. Divided we fall.

SXM 4 Life!





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It’s the simple moments that brings the most happiness! 👍🏽😍🌴👋🏽☀️🌴🏖🏖😍👍🏽🏖 Photo by captainjoboatcharter 😍👍🏽🏖😍 📸👍🏽 🌴😎👍🏽⛵️🌴☀️🏄🏽📸 👉🏽 TAG US in your SXM PHOTOS to be featured on St Maarten Map. 👉🏽"Subscribe to us our website @ www.stmaartenmap.com to receive our free travel guide.🌴🌴📸👍🏽👍🏽🌴😍👍🏽⛵️ . #saintmartin #grandcase #sea #ocean #Caribbean #boats #excursion #amazing #iamsxm #sintmaarten #love #sxmstrong #views #french #dutch #travel #saintmaarten #stmartin #pinelisland #sxm #stmarteen #sxm #stbarts #anguilla #saba #beautiful #stmaartenmap #marigot #simpsonbay ...

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Cheers to life! 👍🏽😍🌴👋🏽☀️🌴🏖🏖😍👍🏽🏖 Photo by wearesxm 😍👍🏽🏖😍 📸👍🏽 🌴😎👍🏽⛵️🌴☀️🏄🏽📸 👉🏽 TAG US in your SXM PHOTOS to be featured on St Maarten Map. 👉🏽"Subscribe to us our website @ www.stmaartenmap.com to receive our free travel guide.🌴🌴📸👍🏽👍🏽🌴😍👍🏽⛵️ . #saintmartin #grandcase #sea #ocean #Caribbean #boats #excursion #amazing #iamsxm #sintmaarten #love #sxmstrong #views #french #dutch #travel #saintmaarten #stmartin #pinelisland #sxm #stmarteen #sxm #stbarts #anguilla #saba #beautiful #stmaartenmap #marigot #simpsonbay ...

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It’s the weekend!👍🏽😍🌴👋🏽☀️🌴🏖🏖😍👍🏽🏖 Photo by markoradisavljevic 😍👍🏽🏖😍 📸👍🏽 🌴😎👍🏽⛵️🌴☀️🏄🏽📸 👉🏽 TAG US in your SXM PHOTOS to be featured on St Maarten Map. 👉🏽"Subscribe to us our website @ www.stmaartenmap.com to receive our free travel guide.🌴🌴📸👍🏽👍🏽🌴😍👍🏽⛵️ . #saintmartin #grandcase #sea #ocean #Caribbean #boats #excursion #amazing #iamsxm #sintmaarten #love #sxmstrong #views #french #dutch #travel #saintmaarten #stmartin #pinelisland #sxm #stmarteen #sxm #stbarts #anguilla #saba #beautiful #stmaartenmap #marigot #simpsonbay ...

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Honestly.. All politics aside, This is one of the most magical island in the entire world..❤️🤞🇸🇽🇫🇷

Sint Maarten - Saint Martin - Soualiga - Oualichi
Whatever you would like to call it.. THIS IS PARADISE!
Send this to 3 friends that need to visit our island❤️🌴
Photo credits: © (currently unknown)


#onlyonsxm #sintmaarten #sxm #paradise #caribbean #island #klm #stmaarten #saintmartin #mahobeach
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Sometimes everything is just perfect 💛 #heartfortravel
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Happy August from Sonesta Resorts Sint Maarten ☀️✈️ oceanpointresort mahobeachresort casino_royale_sxm 📸 magicofthecaribbean 😎 #sxm #sintmaarten #stmaarten #caribbean #travel #summervibes #summer ...

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Weather

The best time to visit Sint Maarten for beach based activities, is from December to April, during the classic tropical dry season. During most of the year the weather is hot, windy and partly cloudy. The warmest month is July, while September is the most wet. Anyway overall the climate is consistent and with not big swings. From June to November occurs the Hurricane season. Generally September is the month when they are more likely to happen.

Dry season

Dry season

From December to April. During the dry season, January is recording the lowest temperatures, while March the driest month.

82°F 75°F

Wet season

Wet season

From April May till November/December. The most rainy period is between September and November, with some lower rain accumulation also in the month of May.

88°F 77°F

Good to know

 

  1. Clothing Casual summer wear can be worn during the day any time of the year; but be sure to bring a jacket or sweater for cooler evenings.
  2. Water Shoes Bring them if you go to swim or snorkel. Some of the water can be rocky after you walk from the beach.
  3. Sundries For convenience and cost concerns, bring your own everyday health and beauty products with you. If you head to the beach, bring your onboard towel.
  4. Port Regulation Be aware that often in port it's forbidden to take off the ship fruits, vegetables and unsealed food items for local agricolture concern.
  5. Time Zone AST (Atlantic Standard Time) UTC/GMT -4 hours. Make sure to keep the ship's time on your clock to come back board on time. Be aware of automatic changes of your smartphones.
  6. Currency The official currency is the Netherlands Antillean Florin. Us Dollars are also accepted across the Island.

Terminal

St. Maarten has developed a large Cruise Terminal in Philipsburg. From here water taxis continually run from the cruise terminal to different spots at the beach promenade. Otherwise  you can have a 10 minutes walk or take a land taxi to reach the town. There are a few shops inside the terminal itself.

Philipsburg Cruise Port on a busy day, seen while walking to the downtown.

The port has two cruise ship piers, where up to 6 cruise ships can dock simultaneously.

  • Pier 1, inaugurated in 2009, has the capacity to dock 4 ships together. It measures 1788 ft (545 m) in length.
  • Pier 2, opened in 2017, expanded vigorously the port capacity. It allows now to dock the biggest cruise ships in the world (the Royal’s Oasis Class).

Right in front of the Piers, the Harbour Point Village welcome guests with information centers, duty-free shops, bars and restaurants. From its doors the tour buses depart, while you can find all the other available means of private and public transportation.

Transport

Did you know that

If you want to cross from lively St. Maarten in the south to sleepy St. Martin up north, the only indication at the border is “Bienvenue Partie Française”: Welcome in France.

The best way to get around St. Martin and St. Maarten is renting a car. But really, outside of walking, just about any mean of navigating between the French and Dutch sides of the island is manageable. Having a car will allow you more mobility and you’ll find reasonable rental rates. The island buses also cater to tourists and are fairly cheap to ride. If you don’t like the idea of waiting on a bus, consider splurging on a taxi.

Nearby destinations

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