There is nowhere else in the world quite like the breathtakingly beautiful island of St. Maarten and St. Martin. As a place that is interestingly split between the Dutch and the French, you will most certainly come to realize the island offers two completely different worlds, depending on which side you find yourself on. Shared between France and the Netherlands, St. Maarten and St. Martin is the smallest territory in the world governed by two states. The Dutch side is an area of the island filled with Westernized infrastructures and all the modern comforts of home, while the French side presents a more raw, authentic character filled with an Afro-Caribbean flare and charmingly slower pace.
Regardless of which side you do find yourself on, the island gifts its visitors and residents with year-round sunshine. The landscape of the rippling green hills is absolutely magical and is filled with over 30 sun-splashed, unspoiled white-sand beaches. You’ll discover all of the Caribbean vibes that you’d expect while visiting this island, but you’ll also come across an incredibly diverse population of people that makes St. Maarteen/St.Martin unique from the rest of the islands in the area. Now as mega yachts descend back to the Mediterranean for the summer, the entire island is left with a more subtle quietness, all while exuding its luxurious ambiance. Without the crowds and cruise ships that tend to fill the town, the island is able to breathe once again, allowing those visiting in the shoulder seasons to truly experience all that this place has to offer.
In the Creole/French town of Grand Case, you'll find a tiny outpost on the French side that's lined with a mixture of high-end beachside boutique hotels and excellent restaurants all situated along their quaint main street. The small town is constantly filled with bustling noises, kids running around and dogs zooming past you. Top that off with sweeping views of the crystalline blue waters of the Caribbean as your setting, Grand Case boasts both luxury and local vibes. With so many secluded private beaches to find on this island, make sure to stay on the French side after a bite in Grand Case (it is culinary capital after all) and head to Baie aux Prunes (Plum Bay Beach). No loud music, no water sport activities, nobody trying to sell you things and no restaurants near by. Simply an untouched beach near the island’s western tip that is a hidden gem alluring people in with its serene atmosphere.
Both sides of this tiny island provide those both living and visiting with an compelling blend of nationalities and cultures from around the world which makes St. Maarten and St. Martin absolutely irresistible to pass up. With an accepting attitude of everyone from anywhere, the island has coined itself as the “friendly island,” which, it most certainly is. From beaches to fine dining, to different cultures and an incredible food scene, St.Maarten/St.Martin is a creative interpretation of an authentic but lavish place to hide out from the daily grind of life and treat yourself. After all, who can pass up this view?