St. Martin and St. Maarten, Two Caribbean Paradises

Adrienne Wilson’s posts about her St. Lucia trip have made me want to head to a tropical island for my own vacation-immediately. When my dad told me yesterday that he’s heading to St. Martin in May I started calculating dates to see if this jaunt might be doable. It might be, or I just might be fantasizing for awhile.

St. Martin shares an island with San Maarten. St. Martin is French; San Maarten is Dutch making this the smallest island that shares territory between two countries. The result is, visitors get two places for the price of one. Going between the two is easy and common, but each side has the flavor of its own country and particular highlights to see. St. Martin boasts the St.Martin Museum: On the Trail of the Arawaks that chronicles the history of the Arawak Indians who lived here at the time of Columbus and for 1,000 years before that.

Fort St. Louis, the fort built in 1767 is another historical landmark. The colonial architecture of the capital Marigot adds to the French ambiance. For the shopper in you, head to the Marigot open air market on Wednesdays and Saturdays.

One place that also caught my attention is Grand Case, a small fishing village in St. Martin that has distinctly painted houses and great food. According to the St. Martin’s website, this is the place where some of the best restaurants are located.

If I do go to St. Martin I’m going to look into a helicopter trip. I’ve never taken a helicopter trip before and Adrienne’s shots of her ride over St. Lucia has me thinking. Plus, there are the gorgeous beaches to while away some hours. Here is a link to La Samanna, a resort on the island that has a page outlining the unique aspects of both countries.