St Maarten Charter Guide
Marrying Dutch, French, Caribbean and Creole culture, the vibrant island of St Maarten is one the most visited in the Caribbean.
St Maarten is an island of dual nationalities. Sint Maarten in the south of the island is part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands whereas Saint Martin, the northern half of the island, is a French overseas collectivity. A popular stop for Caribbean cruise ships, the island is known for its lagoons, beaches and colonial-style architecture.
St Maarten’s international airport and the island’s close proximity to other Caribbean hot spots in the Leeward chain of islands such as St Barths and Anguilla, make it a fantastic location to commence a superyacht charter.
Most superyachts will position themselves in Simpson Bay for embarkation but if you plan to spend time on and around the island itself, many prefer Marigot Bay which is a small town on the French half of the island. The town itself is filled with familiar French smells as the scent of fresh-baked breads and pastries wafts from the cafes and bistros.
At Grande Case on the northern coast, you’ll find a historic fishing village that is more West Indian in style. There’s a strip of boutiques here as well as several desirable bars and restaurants with ocean views.
The island’s beaches are exceptional – all offer fine white sands and bright turquoise waters but several can also be extremely busy. Ask your Captain where to find a more secluded spot, or explore the coastline for yourself by tender.
Sint Maarten’s capital, Philipsburg, is a colourful hub and where most of the island’s designer stores are found. For duty-free watches, jewellery and liquor, Front Street is the place to go but it’s worth noting that you’ll be shoulder to shoulder with tourists.
Sint Maarten also offers visitors exuberant night spots and several casinos, which have popped-up to serve the visiting cruise ship trade. Other local attractions include the Parotte Ville Bird Sanctuary and Topper’s Rhum Distillery.
There are 140 different nationalities residing on the island, and unsurprisingly this has garnered an international mix of cuisines and flavours. Sint Maarten/Saint Martin is often described as the culinary capital of the Caribbean and a handful of restaurants can boast Michelin stars.
No trip to Sint Maarten is complete without taking the tender to Maho Beach. Just meters from the start of the airport runway, jets of all sizes, both commercial jumbos and private, sweep in overhead within what feels like touching distance.
- Sint Maarten/Saint Martin enjoys a tax-free status
- The small off-lying island of Tintamarre has an idyllic beach and a mud bath
- For the best kitesurfing and windsurfing spot, head for Orient Bay
- For adrenaline fans, the Sint Maarten zip line is the world’s steepest, dropping more than one thousand feet in elevation along 2,800 feet of cable and serving up spectacular views of the island the entire way down.
- You’ll find an 18-hole golf course at Mullet Bay
“St Maarten is a fantastic location to commence a Caribbean superyacht charter. Its close proximity to other islands in the Leeward chain mean that within just a short seven day trip one can island-hop with ease between St Maarten, St Barths and Anguilla.”