St Maarten Sights, Shopping and Sand
Sale Price: $65.00
Shopping, Sightseeing & Beach Day Trip in St. Martin
Two countries on one island for almost 400 years. Wouldn't you love to know how they do it? Come along on this St. Maarten excursion for an Island Drive and Beach Tour with a twist, and you'll visit parts of the island usually not seen by cruise guests.
Departing the cruise terminal, you will drive through part of Philipsburg driving towards Cole Bay and Belle Vue, making a photo stop at the Harold Jack lookout point high on a hill overlooking the sea where (clouds permitting), you will have fantastic views of the neighboring islands of Saba (the home of Kong in the original King Kong movie) and St. Eustatius to the south, and British Anguilla to the north. You will also begin to see Simpson Bay and its lagoon as you crest the hill.
Continue on into Marigot, the French capital, which is a quaint French village with a Caribbean twist. Sidewalk cafes serving cappuccino overlook mega-yachts, framed by palm trees. Gourmet restaurants sit in the shadow of a 200-year-old fort, and bold tropical prints in the open-air markets mix with the latest fashions from French boutiques. You will have some free time to experience this wonderful blend.
Then it's on to Orient Bay. This sweeping two-mile long, white-powdered sand beach is protected from the Atlantic waves by a reef, and the bottom has a very gradual slope. It is the island's most popular and busiest beach. You will have approximately an hour and a half to swim, beach walk, or relax on the white sand.
You will also have the opportunity to purchase lunch or indulge in a tropical drink in paradise at a local restaurant located on the east end of the beach.
Returning to Philipsburg through the center of the island, you will have the option of being dropped off downtown for shopping or taken back to the pier.
Guests departing downtown will need to arrange their own transportation back to the cruise pier at their own expense via taxi, water taxi or walking.
Please Note: The tour will also make photo stops with scenic views of Orient Bay. The clothing-optional beach at Club Orient, the naturist resort, is located at the east end of the beach, approximately 10 to 15 minutes from Bikini Beach, where you will be visiting. Although most guests in the Bikini Beach area will be wearing swim attire, be advised that you may encounter topless and possibly nude sunbathers anywhere. This excursion may operate in a different order due to traffic conditions or crowds at the venues. On Sundays, most shops and restaurants on the French side are closed. All stores are closed on the following national holidays: Good Friday, Easter Sunday, Easter Monday, Kings Day, Carnival Day, Labor Day, Ascension Day, Whit Sunday, Emancipation Day, Constitution Day, St. Maarten's Day, Christmas Day, and Boxing Day. Guests booking on these days will have the option to window shop or spend more time at the beach.
Reviewer: Glenda Hickey
We chose this excursion because it was really good value ,to include a tour of both sides of St Maarten and a few hours on the beach . The instructions to find the start of the tour were easy to find and we were greeted by our tour guide,Douce who introduced himself . There were just 6 of us on the tour in a comfortable air conditioned mini bus and Douce informed us that we were welcome to enjoy his home made rum punch, which we certainly did several times! !The tour lasted about 4 hours and it was very informative with several photo stops on the way with a stop at a rum factory a market and finally stopping for 2 hours on a beautiful local beach . Compared to similar excursions offered by Royal Caribbean ,it was extremely good value and we wouldn’t hesitate to choose excursions offered by Cruise direct in the future
Reviewer: Phil Adams
Saw both sides of the island, and our guide did a great job of explaining the differences in the Dutch and French sides. Made several stops--scenic overlooks, beach (for lunch), shopping kiosks. Tour guide was very entertaining.
Reviewer: Mani Lopez
This was a pretty good tour that covered both the French and Dutch side of the island. Enjoying the local food at the beach stop is a must do.
Reviewer: Sue Bergquist
The St. Maarten tour was very good. Interesting to learn about the Dutch side and the French side. Enjoyed getting to spend a little time at the beach. Was a little disappointed by the beach surroundings.
Reviewer: Anne Nicholson
This was a great tour. Small vehicle with air con. No microphone - but as guide said "I'll use my preacher voice!" ..... and he did. Very easy to hear. We explored the Dutch side of island first taking in photo stops on this very interesting island. Then on to French side to markets - I bought a hat straight away as somehow I'd lost mine. Not a long stop here (thank goodness! - just the right amount of time. We went around to the other side of island to Orient Bay passing through the foodie area of Grand Case on our way. Orient Bay was sensational! This beautiful beach and the Bikini Beach Restaurant were both incredible. This was a great tour with time left over on our return before boarding ship to explore the boardwalk and beach at St Maarten Harbour.