Saint Martin lies on the northern side of an island, which,
uniquely, is shared between two nations, yet has no official border.
Sint Maarten, the southern side of the island is part of the
Netherland Antilles. French St Martin is presently a Commune of
Guadeloupe, an Overseas Department of the French Republic. It is in
the process of forming its own constitution, like its neighbouring
island, St Barts, independently of Guadelaoupe. It is part of the
The atmosphere on the French side is a magnetic combination of
Caribbean Creole and cosmopolitan France. The food is typically of
high quality, yet you can dine in casual clothing. Some of the beach
restaurants, particularly at Orient Bay, deliver menus that would
grace the finest restaurant - without the price! Marigot, the
capital is an eclectic mixture of open-air market, fresh fish stalls
and high quality boutiques and restaurants. It has two marinas, the
smaller and more sheltered of which, Marina Royale, allows you to
lunch or dine within touching distance of the water’s edge.
The Dutch side can be livelier, with its discotheques and casinos.
The shops in Front Street provide an unrivalled opportunity to buy
high quality jewellery at duty free prices. Simpson Bay Lagoon,
close to the airport, houses some of the most sumptuous private
cruise yachts in the world.