General Facts on Location and Culture
St. Maarten is located on the northern end of the Lesser Antilles, approximately 180 miles east of Puerto Rico and is 37 square miles. The tropical island is a dual island, Dutch and French. The island is known as the “Culinary Capital of the Caribbean,” as it has more than 365 different restaurants offering a full range of cuisine.
12 major airlines serve Princess Juliana Airport (SXM). There are also several season charters flights from the U.S. and Canada. It is approximately a three and a half hour flight from New York.
The island is home to 37 breathtaking beaches all affording spectacular views and pristine white sand.
There are about 56 accommodations for travelers to choose from that range from quaint inns to all-inclusive accommodations.
Activities about in St. Maarten where the nightlife comes alive and travelers can test their luck at any one of the 14 casinos or dance the night away at one of the 20 clubs and lounges. Daytime excursions include a variety of activities including boating, hiking, deep-sea fishing as well as island hopping to neighboring islands of Anguilla, St. Barths, St. Eustatius and Saba.
St. Maarten is a shopper’s haven with up to 40% off with duty-free shopping and is home to 17 art galleries to explore the arts of the local and regional culture.
Guests can pamper themselves at one of the 10 luxurious spas including the Christian Dior Spa at the Cliffs at Cupecoy.
St. Maarten is a true Caribbean melting pot with influences from many parts of the globe, predominantly Africa and Europe. This allows the island to have a dynamic cultural vibe that shines through Caribbean art, literature, poetry and music that is shown in more than 20 art galleries throughout the island. Musically, the island offers a range of Caribbean styles that fuse other elements to create a unique vibe allowing for the unique dance known as “Ponum,” a rhythmic, high-energy jig passed down from the day the islands slaves were emancipated. Ponum is the national dance of St. Maarten.
Top three things St. Maarten is known for:
Culinary: St. Maarten also known as the “Culinary Capital of the Caribbean,” boasts more than 365 restaurants and a variety of cuisines from around the world.
Nightlife: Nightlife comes alive in St. Maarten with more than 20 nighttime haunts that include Tantra nightclub, Bliss, Sopranos Bar and many more.
Yachting/Sailing: For sailors, St. Maarten is their haven. Home to the Heineken Regatta, 12-Meter Regatta and a variety of smaller sailing competitions like the race around the island.
On this island, your limits are the sky in one direction and the bottom of the sea in the other. Sail the yacht that won the America's cup. Motor a catamaran along the mythical line separating the Atlantic Ocean from the Caribbean Sea. Charter a fishing vessel and set out for giant marlin. Dive. Fish. Hike. Climb historic Mount Concordia. Do it all. See it all. For here there are no limits other than the boundaries of nature itself.
Dive: The HMS Proselyte is a remarkably preserved British frigate which offers a spectacular diving experience with great visibility. Originally a Dutch war frigate, the ship's crew mutinied in 1796 and turned control of the vessel over to the British. Five years later the ship was wrecked at Man of War Shoals, which was recently declared a national marine park December 2010 in order to protect Proselyte Reef, the island’s most important underwater habitat. The reef includes coral reefs, sea grass beds as well as a large population of fish, sharks, sea turtles, dolphins and whales.
Visit www.vacationstmaarten.com for more information about the island and what it has to offer