From bright blue waters and pristine beaches to majestic mountains and vibrant flora, St. Maarten is an ideal destination for a picturesque tropical getaway. This year, St. Maarten is back and better than ever and is a top choice for an escape to paradise. Plus, with Sunwing’s newly resumed direct flight service to St. Maarten Canadians from Toronto and Montreal can discover the island’s charming culture, world-class beaches, and verdant landscapes all year-round.
St. Maarten’s endearing charm has earned it a reputation as the Friendly Island. This tiny paradise is comprised of Saint-Martin, on the northern French side, and St. Maarten, on the Dutch side of the island. Needless to say, this unique destination boasts a blend of French, Dutch and Creole influences. Visitors can explore the islands European heritage at Fort Louis and Fort Amsterdam, historic landmarks overlooking some of the island’s pristine beaches.
The island is also decorated with brightly coloured buildings and features an abundance of restaurants serving authentic Creole and European fusion dishes. Known for its lively atmosphere, visitors can look forward to bustling boardwalks, stylish boutiques, and vibrant nightlife.
Dotted along the island’s rugged 70 kilometre coastline are 37 spectac- ular beaches rated among the most beautiful in the Caribbean. One of
the largest and most popular is Orient Beach. Nicknamed Saint Tropez of the Caribbean visitors can look forward to lively beach bars, delicious restaurants, and occasional celebrity sightings along crystalline shores.
At Maho Beach, thrill-seekers can watch planes glide directly above them while they sunbathe on powdery white sands. Mullet Bay Beach offers a serene atmosphere with calm waters, soft sands and swaying palm trees, a great choice for those looking to relax. Vacationers looking to find a hidden gem will enjoy the elusive Lovers Beach — nestled between rugged cliffs, this is the tiniest beach on the island that can only accommodate two people at a time.
HAVEN FOR WATER SPORTS
With warm seas and consistent trade winds, St. Maarten offers the perfect conditions for unrivalled water sports. Some popular activities include kayaking through the mangroves and inland lagoons, notably Simpson Bay, the Caribbean’s largest lagoon, and scenic sailboat rides surrounded by sparkling ocean views. Surfers can brave the waves at Le Galion, one of the island’s most popular surfing spots.
Aqua-enthusiasts can venture below the surface to explore exceptional underwater landscapes. The island features an array of diverse dive spots for beginners and experts. Its shallow waters are ideal for those looking to learn and filled with florescent sea life including turtles, reef sharks and vibrant coral, while more seasoned divers can look forward to numerous fascinating shipwrecks scattered around the island.