<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/casisthefirst/8048545661/">Baie Orientale</a> by Christian H.
Many consider this the island's most beautiful beach, but its 2 miles (3 km) of satiny white sand, underwater marine reserve, variety of water sports, beach clubs, and hotels also make it one of the most crowded. Lots of "naturists" take advantage of the clothing-optional policy, so don't be shocked. Early-morning nude beach walking is de rigueur for the guests at Club Orient, at the southeastern end of the beach. Plan to spend the day at one of the clubs; each bar has different color umbrellas, and all boast terrific restaurants and lively bars. You can have an open-air massage, try any sea toy you fancy, and stay until dark. To get here from Marigot, take National Road 7 past Grand Case, past the Aéroport de L'Espérance, and watch for the left turn. Amenities: food and drink; parking; toilets; water sports. Best for: partiers; nudists; swimming; walking; windsurfing.
Baie Orientale, 97150, St. Martin
Feb 25, 2009
There's always plenty of activity going on at Orient Bay. A great place to spend the day relaxing, dining, enjoying water sports, or just reading a good book. It's usually more crowded than other beaches on the island and can get expensive for a day, but the people watching is well worth it.