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Sint Maarten

Sint Maarten (Dutch pronunciation: [s?nt ?ma?rt?(n)]) is an island country in the Caribbean. It is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. With a population of 40,120 on an area of 37 km2 (14 sq mi), it encompasses the southern 40% of the divided island of Saint Martin, while the northern 60% of the island constitutes the French overseas collectivity of Saint-Martin. Sint Maarten's capital is Philipsburg.

Before 10 October 2010, Sint Maarten was known as the Island Territory of Sint Maarten (Dutch: Eilandgebied Sint Maarten), and was one of five island territories (eilandgebieden) that constituted the Netherlands Antilles.

On 6 and 7 September 2017 the island was hit by Category 5 Hurricane Irma, which caused widespread and significant damage to buildings and infrastructure. A total of two deaths had been reported as of 8 September. By then, "many inhabitants [were] devoid of basic necessities" and looting had become a serious problem.

On 10 October 2017, Princess Juliana International Airport commenced commercial flights. Operation of commercial flights will continue in temporary structures, as the original structure of Princess Juliana International Airport undergoes repairs.

Sint Maarten has the 14th largest GDP per capita in the world (including territories) when measured by purchasing power parity, over three times as high as its French counterpart.

SINT MAARTEN: Dutch & French Overseas

Naira Matevosyan

Follow your tourgide, the wombat named Wassily Watson, in a mesmerizing trip to a bi-national Caribbean paradise just 50 miles southeast of Puerto Rico and forty-five minutes from Miami. Part of the Leeward Islands, Sint Maarten (capital Philipsburg) and Saint Martin (capital Marigot) is home to busy resort beaches, secluded coves, lagoons, bird-observation spots, museums, coast-rides named Quad ATV, fusion cuisine, duty-free shops and vibrant nightlife that refuses to shut down.

Fodor's In Focus St. Maarten/St. Martin, St. Barth & Anguilla (Full-color Travel Guide)

Fodor's Travel Guides

Separated by just a few miles and known as favorites of American travelers, the Caribbean islands of St. Maarten/St. Martin, St. Barthélemy (also known as St. Barth's), and Anguilla couldn't be more different. Dutch St. Maarten offers big resorts, extensive shopping, and vibrant casinos, while French St. Martin is a bit more low-key, with excellent dining options and smaller, charming hotels; both sides share excellent beaches and offer a wide range of outdoor activities. Upscale St. Barth's is dotted with exquisite luxury boutique hotels and hundreds of private villas, bringing a taste of France's Côte d'Azur to the Caribbean. Anguilla is known for its soft, white beaches, luxurious accommodations, excellent restaurants, and fun, low-key nightlife. The three islands are linked by frequent air and ferry service, allowing travelers to hop from one island to the other easily and quickly.

Sint Maarten (Saint Martin) Travel Guide: The Top 10 Highlights in Sint Maarten (Saint Martin) (Globetrotter Guide Books)

Marc Cook

Sint Maarten: Paradise on a Friendly Island!

Does your idea of the perfect vacation include delicious food, spectacular beaches and exceptional shopping? If so, traveling to Sint Maarten is an excellent way to go. Keep in mind though that the island is a popular tourist destination at which cruise ships make regular stops. Therefore, if you’re in search of solitude, head over to the French side of the island, which is more laid-back than the lively Dutch half.

This tiny island in the eastern Caribbean Sea offers visitors some of the most spectacular beaches in the world, beautiful colonial towns and amazing nature parks just waiting to be explored.

With so many touristic attractions to choose from on such a small island, visitors may feel overwhelmed when looking for things to do on Sint Maarten. But fear not. Simply get this compact book to give you the most important information about the places that will help you make the most out of your vacation in Sint Maarten.

Inside the Sint Maarten Travel Guide:

MarigotLa Ferme des PapillonsMuseum of Sint MaartenMullet BayOrient BayMaho BayPhilipsburgGrand CaseCreole RockPic Paradis

Follow in the footsteps of the native Arawak and Carib Indians, for whom the entire Caribbean is named, and seek refuge on one of Sint Maarten spectacular beaches, as you watch the turquoise-tinted waves gently undulating onto the powdery fine sandy beaches. The sun will warm and caress you as you dip into the stunning blue-green of the Caribbean Sea.

Sint Maarten also has several colonial towns with pleasant architecture and old-world charm to keep you happy and entertained during your stay. Starting with Philipsburg, tourists who want to experience the Sint Maarten lifestyle should simply take a stroll through the narrow alleys of Front Street.

One of the many things Sint Maarten is famous for is its beaches. But, did you know you can sail around the entire island to pick out the best beaches to visit later?

Well, in this easy to read travel guide you’ll find out which are the most popular beaches, but also the most interesting parks and natural reserves and what other amazing things you can do while vacationing in Sint Maarten.

Don’t hesitate! Get the Sint Maarten Travel Guide right now and start planning your best vacation yet!

Sint Maarten ~ Saint Martin

Marty Straub

A photography excursion to the Dutch/French Caribbean Island.

Sint Maarten Travel Guide (Unanchor) - Two Exciting Days in Dutch Sint Maarten - Hello Cruisers!

Renee Hundt

Two Exciting Days in Dutch Sint Maarten - Hello Cruisers!Sint Maarten, a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, encompasses the southern half of this amazing Caribbean island. This itinerary will focus on the "Dutch Side" of the island and in particular the sites and activities of the capital city of Philipsburg, Princess Juliana International Airport, and Maho Beach.Official languages are Dutch and English as well as a local English-based Creole dialect is also spoken.Grocery stores and various businesses may have prices expressed in Netherland Antilles Florins (NAF), which is the local currency, also called the Guilders, but the U.S. Dollar and the Euro will gladly be accepted.The average high temperature is about 84 F / 28.89 C and the average low temperature is 74 F / 23.33 C.Philipsburg and Sint Maarten is a great area for couples, families, retirees, and those that enjoy cruising. Follow one day of this itinerary, or both, and experience one of the most amazing places of the Caribbean.

Sint Maarten Flag Journal: Sint Maarten Travel Diary, Holiday Souvenir Book, lined Journal to write in

Country Flag Journals

Travel Diary Journal, Traveler's Notebook, Sint Maarten Flag Diary for Fans of Sint Maarten and Sint Maarten Patriots. Great Sint Maarten Gift, Present, Souvenir Book Blank neutral wide-ruled paper with a line at the top for the date to write down all of the magic moments and exciting adventures of your trip to Sint Maarten. The blank diary contains 132 lined pages to write in your holiday experiences, unforgettable impressions and thoughts. No matter whether you're planning to visit Philipsburg or Great Bay Beach, discover colorful, colonial-style buildings or the Cruise Port, or enjoy span lagoons, beaches and salt pans- write your own travel diary and capture the happy moments of your trip to Sint Maarten! The Travel Diary to write in is the perfect travel gift for friends and family planning a trip to Sint Maarten, for anyone with Sint Maarten roots or simply a great souvenir from your holiday or honeymoon in Sint Maarten.

Blank Lined Sint Maarten Flag Journal to write in for women and men, kids and teens. The small portable blank book with lined pages (6"x9") is light enough to carry in a bag or a backpack.

Perfectly sized at 6"x9" 132 Pages Softcover bookbinding Flexible Paperback Glossy cover design, Retro Look Flag Neutral wide-ruled paper with a line at the top for the date Ideal for taking notes, dreams, thoughts, memories, writing in as a diary, or giving as a gift

Saint Martin/sint Maarten: Portrait Of An Island

Madeleine Greey

Saint Martin/Sint Maarten is unique by any standards- historically, geographically, and culturally. Situated in the Caribbean Leeward Islands and only 37 square miles across, it is remarkable for its dual nationality: French and Dutch. The border is almost invisible and people cross back and forth without ever really realizing they are entering a new country. The only sign is a monument between Union Road and Bellevue commemorating over 350 years of peaceful cohabitation and the Treaty that made the arrangement possible. With its two bustling capitals Marigot (on the French side) and Philipsburg (on the Dutch) and its subtle and not so subtle cultural and architectural differences, there are endless opportunities for everyone, from the casinos in Philipsburg to a day's hike through the jungles of Loterie Farm near Pic Paradis.

The towns on the French side are a mixture of markets that are typically Caribbean and cafes that are typically French. On the Dutch side, Philipsburg is a popular mooring place for cruise ships and with its many restaurants, shops, night clubs, and casinos has long been an active center for trade and tourism. It's an island that truly rewards exploration and it's not called the gourmet capital of the Caribbean for nothing! Photographer Donald Nausbaum and his wife, acclaimed food writer Madeleine Greey, are the island's biggest fans. Together, they have traveled the length and breadth of Saint Martin/Sint Maarten capturing on film and in words the very essence of this beautiful and delightfully partitioned island home.

North to Cayman, East To Sint Maarten and Saint Barth (My Very Long Youth, Book 13)

Lawrence Bohme

Book 13 of Lawrence's youthful adventures, 1976-1980. After a chaotic arrival on the island of Brac, in which the puppy Sam dashes into a nearby swamp and never emerges, Lawrence, scathed by his ordeals in Haiti and Colombia, settles down to making leather goods and postcards in the prosperous and peaceful British colony, where he finds enthusiastic customers among wealthy tourists who spend their days underwater admiring fish. Lawrence, assisted by his black guardian angel whom his mother fondly nicknames "McFuffle", the government official in charge of work permits, does his duty by taking on as his assistant the handsome mulatto school dropout Kelson Kelly from a slum called Dog City. He befriends an eccentric old beggar called Rachel who lives alone in a shack and plays humorous songs on her guitar, and finds a sporadic "café-sans-lait" girlfriend who seems to have slept with every white man on the island… He arouses some resentment from the island's administrators ensconced in the "Glass House" by standing up for a boatload of hapless Haitian refugees blown off course on their way to Miami and, threatened with expulsion himself, helplessly watches them put back on the stormy sea… After two years of restoring his finances and enduring mosquitoes and boredom on overly-British Brac, Lawrence moves to the livelier East Caribbean island of Sint Maarten, which is half-Dutch and half-French but otherwise entirely West Indian… He rents, from a flea-sized but autocratic American who adamantly claims to be the niece of the Duchess of Windsor "who almost became Queen", a corner of her tropical sea-shell shop on the Dutch side of the island in which he measures people getting off the cruise ships moored outside for sandals, and the upper floor of a beach house in Grand Case on the French one, where he pays an unforgettable visit under cover of darkness to the shack of a libidinous lady from Antigua called Daisy… He flies frequently through the surrounding islands to draw and distribute postcards of each one, especially Saint Croix where he stays above the wig shop of a starry-eyed divorced gentleman from New Jersey (whom he met through Cynthia) known to the island matrons who buy their synthetic hair from him as "Mister Wig" (also the name of the shop) although Lawrence calls him "Bob"… When Lawrence finds a suitable cottage for his home and shop on the nearby French island of Saint Barth, he loads his open-topped jeep loaded with everything he owns onto a tramp freighter and a new life begins in the capital Gustavia, where our peripatetic Francophile feels entirely at home. There, he caters to the artistic jet-set staying at a hotel on a mountain peak called The Little Castles (in French) which is later blown away in a hurricane. A black schooner drops anchor in front of his shop bearing a motley crew of ageing hippies in the keep of an ex-lady of leisure who runs up a bill at Lawrence's shop which he is forced to send the Gendarmes to collect… But then his mother wearies of tropical-island life and insists they move back to "civilization", so to please her Lawrence sells out his business and, unwilling to make a new life in New York readies himself to stay technically in France by heading for the mountains of Provence…

St. Martin/Sint Maarten Island (Travel Adventures)

K.C. Nash

Catering to both French and Dutch sensibilities (with a lot of American influences), this island is great for those who want a European or American vacation in a tropical location. The wealth of casinos, night spots and restaurants make this a no-brainer for Cruise Passengers and “I Like” Travelers. There are a few top-end resorts and a lot of French bistros to delight incurable romantics. And, with the array of watersports at Orient Beach, the zoo and the Butterfly Farm, the families will find it easy to plan outings for the kids. The duty-free havens of Phillipsburg and Marigot are enough to send shoppers into absolute ecstasy. Orient Beach, with its colorful umbrellas and lounges lined up in rows and the topless sunbathers languishing in the tropical breezes, is reminiscent of the French Riviera. Anse Marcel, with its collection of luxury hotels, is a beautiful harbor area with a tidy marina and a pretty beach. Grand Case is one of the gastronomic centers of the Caribbean, with more quality French restaurants per square mile than you’ll find anywhere outside of Paris. The beaches around the southwestern edge of the island rival any found in the Leewards for powdery sand and gentle waves. And there is always plenty to do, as numerous companies offer all sorts of watersports and touring adventures. So if you want an island where you have access to everything the Caribbean offers – including beautiful beaches, glitzy casinos, great restaurants and a wide variety of activities – this is your place. Everything you need to know about where to stay, where to dine, and how to have fun is here. With color photos on every page.

Adventure Guide to Anguilla, Antigua, St. Barts, St. Kitts, St. Martin: Including Sint Maarten, Barbuda & Nevis (Adventure Guide to Anguilla, Antigua, ... Kitts & St Martin) (Adventure Guide Series)

Paris Permenter

The first edition of this book, Adventure Guide to the Leeward Islands, won second place in the Best Book category of SATW's Central States Chapter. Each of the islands in this chain - Anguilla, St. Martin/Sint Maarten, Antigua, Barbuda, St. Kitts & Nevis - has its own history, culture and ecology, offering a cultural melange for those on an island-hopping vacation. Rainforest, beaches, wetlands, mangrove swamps and offshore shoals afford an unlimited variety of places in which to create your own adventure vacation. The Adventure Guide to the Leeward Islands is THE ultimate resource if you�re heading for some fun in the sun. Covering all the usual sites and attractions featured in other guidebooks, including historical forts, plantations and in-town places of interest, this Adventure Guide also leads you away from the tourist traps and into the heart of the island to discover hidden waterfalls, pure mountain streams and secret trails. In addition, you�ll find an entire run-down on where to stay and eat, from five-star resorts to family-run B&Bs and from haute cuisine to roadside stands selling the best BBQ chicken on the island. Focusing on outdoor activities, the authors recommend local tour operators and adventure outfitters, with contact names and numbers. Maps and photos.

Exercise normal security precautions

The decision to travel is your responsibility. You are also responsible for your personal safety abroad. The purpose of this Travel Advice is to provide up-to-date information to enable you to make well-informed decisions.


Petty crime occurs. Ensure that your personal belongings, passports and other travel documents are secure at all times. Armed robberies and tourists being chased by people on motorcycles have been reported. Avoid unpopulated areas and unpatrolled beaches after dark. Check with local authorities to determine which beaches are safe.

Public transportation

Taxis are plentiful and are a convenient way to get around during short stays. Princess Juliana International Airport, which serves both sides of the island, is located in Sint Maarten.

Consult our Transportation Safety page in order to verify if national airlines meet safety standards.

Emergency services

Dial 919 for police, 542 2222 for ambulance and medical assistance, and 542 2111 or 545 5263 for roadside assistance.


Related Travel Health Notices
Consult a health care provider or visit a travel health clinic preferably six weeks before you travel.

Routine Vaccines

Be sure that your routine vaccines are up-to-date regardless of your travel destination.

Vaccines to Consider

You may be at risk for these vaccine-preventable diseases while travelling in this country. Talk to your travel health provider about which ones are right for you.

Hepatitis A

Hepatitis A is a disease of the liver spread by contaminated food or water. All those travelling to regions with a risk of hepatitis A infection should get vaccinated.

Hepatitis B

Hepatitis B is a disease of the liver spread through blood or other bodily fluids. Travellers who may be exposed (e.g., through sexual contact, medical treatment or occupational exposure) should get vaccinated.


Seasonal influenza occurs worldwide. The flu season usually runs from November to April in the northern hemisphere, between April and October in the southern hemisphere and year round in the tropics. Influenza (flu) is caused by a virus spread from person to person when they cough or sneeze or through personal contact with unwashed hands. Get the flu shot.


Measles occurs worldwide but is a common disease in developing countries, particularly in parts of Africa and Asia. Measles is a highly contagious disease. Be sure your vaccination against measles is up-to-date regardless of the travel destination.


Typhoid is a bacterial infection spread by contaminated food or water. Risk is higher among travellers going to rural areas, visiting friends and relatives, or with weakened immune systems. Travellers visiting regions with typhoid risk, especially those exposed to places with poor sanitation should consider getting vaccinated.

Yellow Fever Vaccination

Yellow fever is a disease caused by the bite of an infected mosquito.

Travellers get vaccinated either because it is required to enter a country or because it is recommended for their protection.

* It is important to note that country entry requirements may not reflect your risk of yellow fever at your destination. It is recommended that you contact the nearest diplomatic or consular office of the destination(s) you will be visiting to verify any additional entry requirements.
  • There is no risk of yellow fever in this country.
Country Entry Requirement*
  • Proof of yellow fever vaccination is required if you are coming from a country where yellow fever occurs.
  • Vaccination is not recommended.
  • Discuss travel plans, activities, and destinations with a health care provider.

Food and Water-borne Diseases

Travellers to any destination in the world can develop travellers' diarrhea from consuming contaminated water or food.

In some areas in the Caribbean, food and water can also carry diseases like cholera, hepatitis A, schistosomiasis and typhoid. Practise safe food and water precautions while travelling in the Caribbean. Remember: Boil it, cook it, peel it, or leave it!


Insects and Illness

In some areas in the Caribbean, certain insects carry and spread diseases like chikungunya, dengue fever, malaria and West Nile virus.

Travellers are advised to take precautions against bites.

Dengue fever
  • Dengue fever occurs in this country. Dengue fever is a viral disease that can cause severe flu-like symptoms. In some cases it leads to dengue haemorrhagic fever, which can be fatal.  
  • Mosquitoes carrying dengue bite during the daytime. They breed in standing water and are often found in urban areas.
  • Protect yourself from mosquito bites. There is no vaccine available for dengue fever.



There is no risk of malaria in this country.


Animals and Illness

Travellers are cautioned to avoid contact with animals, including dogs, monkeys, snakes, rodents, birds, and bats. Some infections found in some areas in the Caribbean, like rabies, can be shared between humans and animals.


Person-to-Person Infections

Crowded conditions can increase your risk of certain illnesses. Remember to wash your hands often and practice proper cough and sneeze etiquette to avoid colds, the flu and other illnesses.

Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and HIV are spread through blood and bodily fluids; practise safer sex.


HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) is a virus that attacks and impairs the immune system, resulting in a chronic, progressive illness known as AIDS (Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome). 

Practise safe sex while travelling, and don’t share needles, razors, or other objects which could transmit infection.

Remember that HIV can also be spread through the use of unsterile medical equipment during medical and dental procedures, tattooing, body piercing or acupuncture. Diseases can also be spread though blood transfusions and organ transplantation if the blood or organs are not screened for HIV or other blood-borne pathogens.

Medical services and facilities

Medical services and facilities

Medical care is generally good. Hospitals offer several classes of service. Patients are accommodated according to the level of their insurance coverage.

Keep in Mind...

The decision to travel is the sole responsibility of the traveller. The traveller is also responsible for his or her own personal safety.

Be prepared. Do not expect medical services to be the same as in Canada. Pack a travel health kit, especially if you will be travelling away from major city centres.

You are subject to local laws. Consult our Arrest and Detention page for more information.


The law requires that everyone over the age of 12 be able to show valid identification to law enforcement authorities at all times. Report the loss or theft of identification documents immediately to the nearest police station. Obtain a copy of the police report, keep it on your person, and apply for a replacement document as soon as possible.

Same-sex marriages are not recognized in Sint Maarten.

Turning right on red lights is prohibited. The use of a cellular telephone while driving is also prohibited, unless fitted with a hands-free device, and is punishable by a fine.

A valid Canadian driver's licence is sufficient for driving in Sint Maarten and Saint Martin.


Be cautious when renting vehicles, especially when arranging for insurance and liability. Ask questions and obtain detailed written information regarding your personal responsibilities before finalizing any rental arrangements.


The currency is the Netherlands Antilles Guilder (ANG). U.S. dollars and traveller’s cheques, as well as credit cards, are widely accepted. You may convert foreign currency at all major banks and numerous exchange facilities.

Automated banking machines (ABMs) are available throughout Sint Maarten.


The hurricane season extends from June to the end of November. The National Hurricane Center provides additional information on weather conditions. Stay informed of regional weather forecasts, and follow the advice and instructions of local authorities.

The rainy season extends from October to February.

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