Travel

Must Do/See in St Marten?

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  • May 21st, 2018 7:01 pm
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[OP]
Newbie
Oct 26, 2003
31 posts
6 upvotes
Caledon

Must Do/See in St Marten?

Traveling with my extended family (12 total) to St marten any must see or go do? 9 adults, 2 toddlers (3years old) and an infant <1

Thanks in advance for any insight?

Travel Feb 2019
11 replies
Deal Fanatic
Feb 7, 2017
5294 posts
2936 upvotes
Eastern Ontario
Sint Maarten / Saint Martin was one of the most beautiful islands in the Caribbean, BEFORE the 2017 Hurricane Season.
They were hit very hard... and although open to tourists now, it is said not to be the same place it was just a year ago. Slightly Frowning Face
(30% of buildings destroyed, and 90% damaged)

The biggest draw was the fact it was an international 2 country shared European island (Netherlands & France) ... and the unique differences that brought to this Caribbean paradise in regards to culture... modern Philipsburg contrasting to quaint French Villages.

Closely followed by the amazing scenery, vegetation and beaches... much of which has had issues post hurricane.

I love Sint Maarten & Saint Martin... and have seen it several times over the years at its best... so I got to admit, I would wait another year or two before I look at it as a spot for an extended vacation (vs a day stop via a cruise ship)
Deal Expert
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May 10, 2005
30609 posts
5524 upvotes
Ottawa
Of course, ya gotta go stand at the end of the runway and be blown away. :)



or better yet...

In the 21st Century deleting history has become far more important than making it. Anonymous
Deal Addict
Jun 15, 2015
1575 posts
726 upvotes
Mississauga, ON
Maho Beach is cool.

I like the French side- Marigot and Anse Marcel is a little gem.

Take the ferry and spend the day (or a few) in Anguilla or St Barths.

I usually rent a car when I go.

When are you going? I keep hearing mixed things on the status of St Maarten post-Irma. Most airlines/ tour operators have yet to offer their normal services and even the tentative dates seem iffy.
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Feb 9, 2007
2474 posts
271 upvotes
Whitby
I was there the end of Feb. It was pretty beat up from the hurricane and is still in bad shape in parts (how much of that is for the tourists.....).
I am a big nerd so we went to see that yoda guy - after a stop at a store for 2 beers and a cigar for 3$. He was doing a new model for something while we were there - talked for a bit and pictures etc.
http://netdwellers.com/mz/yodaguy/home.html
The site seems to be from geocities circa 1992 but you get the idea.
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It's pronounced Throat Wobbler Mangrove
Deal Addict
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Nov 2, 2002
1304 posts
194 upvotes
Toronto
Does not address your question, but liquor on the Dutch side (on the main street) is very cheap. Camus XO cognac is $90 US. Shop around though, as there’s lots of competition.
Celebrating 15+ years on RFD!
Deal Fanatic
Feb 7, 2017
5294 posts
2936 upvotes
Eastern Ontario
Tourist crazy Maho Beach is not what it used to be...
And it was a skinny bit of beach barely hanging on to begin with
Stories & most importantly pics & videos
http://www.news.com.au/travel/world-tra ... 58d585f782
https://thepointsguy.com/2017/09/maho-b ... fter-irma/

Every time I see pics, or think of before and after of some of my fave islands in the Caribbean, I pretty much want to cry
Great geography, scenery, people etc
This past winter is the first one in years we have not gone
We decided they all have enough to contend with at home... they don’t need me to get in the way

We decided next year we will just go twice as long to make up for it
Hopefully by then, things will be a bit better than they are now
*fingers crossed* there are no hurricanes this Fall to wreck more havoc on the worst hit islands
Deal Fanatic
Feb 7, 2017
5294 posts
2936 upvotes
Eastern Ontario
Pete_Coach wrote:
May 17th, 2018 5:40 pm
Of course, ya gotta go stand at the end of the runway and be blown away. :)



or better yet...

Definitely something to see...

But it can have its downside, like the Tourist who died there last summer from the jet blast

http://time.com/4856617/sint-maarten-ma ... jet-blast/

Not quite so entertaining then ...

I am guessing that Mother Nature... aka Hurricane Irma may have brought the end to these gatherings that the Dutch Govt was looking for
(Although tourists can be stubborn and / or stupid enough to get there if they are so determined... and there are always going to be those who don’t follow the signage / take bigger risks than others)
[OP]
Newbie
Oct 26, 2003
31 posts
6 upvotes
Caledon
Going February 2019, rented a villa, it suffered damage but all repairs should be complete by Nov this year. Thanks all for the advice!! What car rental companies are on the island? I figure putting 3 car seats in and out of taxis will be a pain.. so debating renting a couple compacts or a mini van or two..
Deal Expert
User avatar
May 10, 2005
30609 posts
5524 upvotes
Ottawa
PointsHubby wrote:
May 17th, 2018 11:02 pm
Tourist crazy Maho Beach is not what it used to be...
And it was a skinny bit of beach barely hanging on to begin with
Stories & most importantly pics & videos
http://www.news.com.au/travel/world-tra ... 58d585f782
https://thepointsguy.com/2017/09/maho-b ... fter-irma/

Every time I see pics, or think of before and after of some of my fave islands in the Caribbean, I pretty much want to cry
Great geography, scenery, people etc
This past winter is the first one in years we have not gone
We decided they all have enough to contend with at home... they don’t need me to get in the way

We decided next year we will just go twice as long to make up for it
Hopefully by then, things will be a bit better than they are now
*fingers crossed* there are no hurricanes this Fall to wreck more havoc on the worst hit islands
Wow, never saw those photos before. That beach is sure destroyed. It is basically not there anymore.
Mind you, those photos were taken right after the hurricane I wonder if it has reverted at all in the past 2 years?
In the 21st Century deleting history has become far more important than making it. Anonymous
Deal Addict
Jun 15, 2015
1575 posts
726 upvotes
Mississauga, ON
ravell wrote:
May 18th, 2018 8:50 am
Going February 2019, rented a villa, it suffered damage but all repairs should be complete by Nov this year. Thanks all for the advice!! What car rental companies are on the island? I figure putting 3 car seats in and out of taxis will be a pain.. so debating renting a couple compacts or a mini van or two..
They had all the major rental companies. I'm pretty sure on my last trip (2 weeks end of Dec 2015/ beginning of Jan 2016) I used thrifty.

Parking is generally free and available throughout the island. The car rental company ran out of GPS and used maps only and had no issues (you can't get lost lol) and there signs are clearly marked.
Deal Fanatic
Feb 7, 2017
5294 posts
2936 upvotes
Eastern Ontario
Pete_Coach wrote:
May 18th, 2018 9:15 am
Wow, never saw those photos before. That beach is sure destroyed. It is basically not there anymore.
Mind you, those photos were taken right after the hurricane I wonder if it has reverted at all in the past 2 years?
Hurricane Irma hit Sint Maarten / Saint Martin on September 6, 2017
So just 8-1/2 months ago
Recovery is still ongoing
TripAdvisor Reviews say Maho is still impressive... for any aviation geek
But the Hurricane made the beach smaller (and hence more crowded)
And the HUGE Jets aren’t coming these days
So ya, not what it was just a few short years ago

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