When I first heard my cousin was getting married on this Island I was so excited! I had heard lots about the airport by the beach and could not wait to see it myself. It did not disappoint! The island is split between the Dutch and the French so it is cool to go on both sides and see the differences! We stayed on the Dutch side which I enjoyed, but next time I would stay on the French to try it out.

Best Food in St Maarten:

Skip Jack’s: We sat outside for a family dinner and I remember the food being pretty good.

Shieka’s Vegetarian & Caribbean Cuisine: We got breakfast here which was good! This was pre-vegetarian days so I wish we could go back now!

Izi Ristorant Italiano: We loved this! The food was amazing!! Our favorite night of the trip.

Fresh Pressed Juice: I spent so long searching for the name of this place and could not find it anywhere on google. It was right behind Captain Hodge Walf, with colorful outside seating. It had the best fresh pressed juice ever, along with the most amazing view.

Palm Beach Orient Bay: Beautiful location on the french side! And they gave us free shots, so that’s a win in my book! I do remember the menu being completely in French tho, so bring your phone with Google translate. I saw somewhere on google that this was closed now, but some still said open? Worth a shot because either way the beach is amazing.

Zee Best: I don’t think it was Zee Best….

Peli Deli Food Market: We stayed in a Suite Style room with a kitchen. So we walked to this local store at the beginning of the trip and got stuff for sandwiches and snacks. Our resort was not all-inclusive (a downfall of the Island, a lot of them arn’t!) so we just made quick lunches a lot of the days. This market is a very short walk from the Villas at Simpson Bay

Where to Stay in St Maarten:

When we were looking at places to stay in St. Maarten we knew we wanted to stay on the Dutch side, because they spoke mostly English. Being with my family, they find that easier than translating so that was pretty much set in stone. Next time, Ryan and I would probably stay on the French side. Also, when searching we found very few (if any at all?) that were all inclusive. That was a bummer. All in all, I did love where we stayed.

AirBnB: I am always an Airbnb fan, when we go back I’ll probably check here first, and go from there.

The Villas at Simpson Bay Resort & Marina: I have nothing but great things to say! It was clean and the rooms were big! Also it was not over crowded. It was a family resort but there wasn’t screaming kids running everywhere and splashing in the pools. ( we don’t have kids, can you tell?) I would for sure stay here again!

La Samanna: This is where my cousin stayed and where they got married. It was breath taking and well worth the cost!!

How to Travel in St Maarten:

Unfortunately, there is no uber or lyft on the Island! When we traveled as a group (6 people) we called ahead for a taxi service and they had a van that accommodated us all. One of the days we rented a car though our hotel.

Simpson Bay Thrifty Car Rental: At the end of the day, everything worked fine and there was no issues, it just was not what we expected upon renting. We chose the cheapest priced car because in the States you usually at least get a decent sedan. Then Ryan pulled up in the car and we burst out laughing. It got us around for the day and honestly, I would do it again!

Also through the Resort there was a bus that left every few hours that went to the boardwalk on Great Bay with all the shops and beach front restaurants. I don’t recall the price but it was very inexpensive.

Is It Safe in St Maarten:

Of all the Caribbean Islands I have been to, this felt like the safest one. Maybe it was because we did not venture out a ton at night, but I felt no sense of concern. In my past experience with Islands, you are an instant target when stepping on the Island. I’ve forever been told to not touch any of the souvenirs people are trying to hand you. That did not happen here what so ever. There was no one yelling stuff at us to come over and buy stuff, no one getting uncomfortably close to us. (unfortunately, Jamaica and Haiti cruise ports are known for this) We walked to the markets and around town to resturants both during the night and were fine. Again, we did not go out to night clubs or anything like that so I can’t speak on any of those areas.

According to the United States Gov Travel, St Maarten is listed as a Level 1 in Safety. (Click here to learn more.)

*With all that being said: you are still in a foreign country, there is increased terrorism in the world today, and tourist in general are known to be targeted in any country. To keep yourself safe always beware of large crowds, beware of groups coming up to you trying to get a petition signed, keep your money and valuables hidden from pick pocketers, split your money up so it is not all in one locations, have copies your passports both at home and with you. With any serious concern contact your countries embassy.*

Things to do in St Maarten:

The Beaches: I mean this is a given! There are so many beaches, where ever you are staying you can probably walk to one, but make sure you venture out and hit other ones around the Island.

Visit the opposite side: Whether you are staying on the French or Dutch side, rent a good and go explore the other! They are both different and have beautiful beaches and amazing restaurants.

The Butterfly Farm: This is great for kids, or any photographers….even if your are just using the portrait mode on your phone 😉

Loterie Farm: Basically a massive tree fort and zip line with the most beautiful atmosphere. You can go on hikes, rent cabanas and get drinks, or swim. It has something for everyone, kids and adults.

Maho Beach: I’m sure you have seen this, but it is the airport beach! The planes look like they are literally going to land on your head, or you could reach up and touch them as they take off. Beware tho, the force from the planes on take off creates massive wind and can blow you over. It blows sand everywhere so it might not be a place for an infant or young child. Find someone to baby sit because this is a MUST DO!

Viator.com: Is always my favorite site for booking excurisions. They have so many options of things to do. Ideas to follow…

  • Catamarans
  • Snorkeling
  • Private Charters
  • ATVs
  • Dinner Cruises

Travel Tips in St Maarten:

Electronics Voltage is be split! The Dutch side is 110 (like the United States) and the French side is 220 like Europe. This means you will need an adapter and converter if you are staying on the French side.

Currency in St Maarten depends on the side you are on. It is Netherlands florin on the Dutch side, and the Euro on the French. Even so, US dollars are widely accepted everywhere. We did not bring any foreign currency and we were fine.

If you are on the french side, learn some french! We found not as many people knew English (or just did not want to speak it) and it made the menus a tad hard to figure out. Also our car almost took out an entire bike race because we couldn’t read the signs! Opps!

Almost all attire is beachy! There are some fancier place that you would want to dress up for but even then think Beach wedding style.

SPF! Ryan got so burnt (PER USUAL!)

About Us

Our love for adventure brought us together, but our views of the world, and similar goals in life, will keep us enjoying each day together, for the rest of our lives. Here’s to a lifetime of adventures!

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