St Maarten Sights, Shopping and Sand
Sale Price: $68.00
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.
Our group of four enjoyed this excursion because of the knowledge and wit of our driver. St. Maarten is an island divided in two by two countries...French and Dutch. The island was hit by a hurricane in 2017. Many areas have not been rebuilt. We went to a beach that was hit head on by 200 mph winds. It was destroyed and rebuilt. Beautiful beach, warm clear water.
Reviewer: Linda Muse
This was a nice sample of the island. We had a guided tour with lots of history around the entire island. During the tour, we stopped for an hour to shop and an hour and a half at Orient Beach. We also had a couple stops for photo opportunities.
Reviewer: James Thelin
A tour guide who showed us a variety of locations on the Dutch & French parts of the island. The itinerary was good. The guide was consumed with his own humor.
Reviewer: Tina Louise Brotz
Rick was our tour guide. With a voice for radio, he was the perfect choice. It was sad to see the devastation the hurricane did, but we were glad to see the renovation in place and we could sense the spirit of pride. The bays were breathtaking. Rick made the tour interactive by having us shout out phrases as he drove by statues. After seeing the Dutch side of Sint Maarten, we stopped for shopping and bought croissants at an authentic French bakery on the French side of the island known as Saint Martin. The one hour restaurant break was like something out of a movie. Watching the parasailing and the ocean waves. This tour will give you a real sense of the island and it’s two cultures. We got the whole enchilada! Rick is a real asset and this tour is worth the money.
Nothing extraordinary about this excursion. Tour around the city was nice and our guide was knowledgeable and had a great sense of humor to liven the trip. The shopping had the usual tourist type trinkets, but we were constantly pestered by the locals to look at their goods. The beach was really nice, however, you had to pay for a beach chair/umbrella. There was no place to get a snack, just expensive restaurants. We do not feel it was worth the price.