Hopping to other islands from St. Maarten

Aug 25th, 2009, 10:29 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 15
Hopping to other islands from St. Maarten

We're going to St. Maarten October 17 thru 24, 2009. This is the third time we are going to St. Maarten, so we enjoy the island. Staying at Oyster Bay in the timeshare. We have never taken a day trip to the other islands (St. Barth's, Anguilla or even Pinel) figuring one island is enough for a week. We may wander this year and do some island hopping. Any suggestions for a day trip? What does it cost, where are the ferries and what to do, where to eat would be very helpful! If you could do one activity for the day, what would you do?
jimmcc58 is offline  
Aug 25th, 2009, 12:15 PM
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Getting to Anguilla from SXM is quite easy. The ferry leaves about every 45 minutes from Marigot. It takes about 25 minutes to make the crossing. I elieve the cost is around $20 to $25 per person each way. Most "day trippers" go to one of the beaches. Shoal Bay East is very popular as it's one of the best in the Caribbean and there are plenty of "beach bars" where you can get food & drink. You can also rent umbrellas and lounge chairs, go snorkeling and take a glass bottom boat ride. Another suggested stopping place is Silly Cay - this is a tiny island in the middle of the harbor where you can relax on a tiny beach, do a bit of snorkeling, listen to music (depending on the day either recorded or a live band) and have a lobster or barbequed chicken lunch. Warning - food at Silly Cay is often described as very expensive.

You can either fly (about $65US PP each way) or take a ferry (about 70Euros pp r/t) to St. Barth's. WARNING - Ferry ride crosses open water and can be a bit rough - it's nickname is the Vomit Comet - 'nuf said. Once on island, you can visit any of several beaches, go shopping (plenty of high fashion, jewelry and other duty free shopping in Gustavia), dine at any one of hundreds of fine restaurants or simply hire a drive/guide to take you around the island to experience all of the above. Go to www.sbhonline.com for more information on ferry/airline schedules and prices as well as things to see and do.

Pinel Island is a short 5 minute "water taxi ride" across the bay at Cul de Sac. People go there for snorkeling (just average), swimming and typical beach bar lunch. It's nothing special. After an hour or two on the island you've seen and done all there is. Do a google search for "Pinel Island" and you'll find tons of information.
RoamsAround is offline  
Aug 25th, 2009, 01:06 PM
Join Date: Jun 2009
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A couple of things to remember about taking the ferry to Anguilla. Firstly you will need your passports - photo ID won't do. Secondly, though the actual ferry fare is cheap, there are hefty departure and arrival taxes to be paid also - be warned.
DavidSXM is offline  
Aug 26th, 2009, 10:11 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2005
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RoamsAround and DavidSXM, thank you for the information. I'll let you know how we did when we get back! We're leaning towards St. Barth's at the moment.
These trips sound similar to when I try to leave Long Island, New York. No matter what route I take, there always seems to be a bridge or tunnel fee involved!
jimmcc58 is offline  
Aug 26th, 2009, 10:47 AM
Join Date: Oct 2008
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Just wanted to add that you are exempt from the hefty departure tax when you leave Anguilla if you take a DAYtrip.. only charged if you overnight...
sassy_cat is offline  
Aug 28th, 2009, 10:34 PM
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 735
Love St. Barth's!! Prices vary with Winair, but flights leave almost every 15 min. Lunch at Le Sereno is fantastic as it is at Emeraude Plage and Eden Rock....none are cheap.
There are places in Gustavia that are fabulous, too. Good luck on branching out. We just split our vac in June b/n SXM and SBH.
iw is offline  
Aug 29th, 2009, 05:43 PM
Join Date: Aug 2008
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I'd stay for more than a day but don't forget about Montserrat - check here for tours - they are the best http://www.volcano-island.com/
SAnParis2 is offline  
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