is St. Maarten worth going to

Dec 11th, 2007, 11:16 AM
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is St. Maarten worth going to

looking to go w/ family (8 and 10 year old kids) in March 2008. Is the island restored from the hurricanes and where would you suggest staying. Looking to spend $200-$300/night 3+ stars (?) Will rent car to visit beaches and
restaurants. The beach is top priority. If suites are available or timeshares would be interested so we're not squeezed into 1 room
cdcdebbie is offline  
Dec 11th, 2007, 02:05 PM
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Consider Aruba or Grand Cayman, both of which are much more "family friendly" than St M/M.

Gekko is offline  
Dec 11th, 2007, 05:02 PM
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I agree with Gekko. St Martin does not seem to be a place where people tend to take their children. I have only stayed on the French side. I think the reason that you don't see as many kids there is because of the toplessness and occasional bottomlessness on the beaches. St Martin also has fabulous gourmet restaurants. Some kids might not be into that type of food. If you go there, I would recommend to look into the Dutch side instead of the French side.
travelenthusiast is offline  
Dec 11th, 2007, 06:13 PM
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I've just returned from a stay of a little over a week in St. Martin. I would have to diagree with some of the comments made here about the island not being "family friendly". I stayed on Orient Bay and there were plenty of kids having a great time on the beach. It's only at the very southern end of the beach (at Club Orient) that you will find nudity. There's no reason for the family to go down there and if you do, it's really no big deal. When the lord created us all, he dressed us in our birthday suits.

I stayed in a privately owned unit at Mount Vernon at the northern end of the beach. There were many families here but none spoke English.

If I were to return, I'd probably stay at the Esmeralda Resort. But not in March. The rates are almost half the winter price starting in April.

I prefered the French side but you could stay at a resort on the Dutch side. It just seemed more crowded over there and most hotels are on busy highways.

There are all kinds of restaurants on both sides and you don't have to go the gourmet route if you don't want to.

There's a ton of activities that the family can do on St. Martin from going out to Pinel Island or taking the Rhino Rider tour out of Simpson Bay.

You can also go over to Anguilla for the day.

I've been to a lot of Caribbean islands and few match the diverse options that St. Martin has to offer.
Otis_B_Driftwood is offline  
Dec 11th, 2007, 11:28 PM
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French and Dutch etc take their kids to St Martin and so did I. I can't see any reason why St Martin would be labelled as a place where people shouldn't take their kids.
Odin is offline  
Dec 12th, 2007, 04:38 AM
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I agree that St. Martin is very kid friendly. There are loads of timeshares available for rent on the Dutch side for very reasonable prices.
dominick2 is offline  
Dec 12th, 2007, 05:07 AM
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I live on St. Maarten. I see families come here to visit all the time with their children.
To say SXM is not fmaily friendly is just plain inaccurate.
While there are a lot of activities that are primarily for adults, there is a tremendous amount of things for children to the Butterfly Farm, the Zoo, and of course every child can spend forever on the beach.
All restaurants welcome children.
And the island has long been restored from hurricanes.. we haven't had one since 19999 thankfully.
Barbara1 is offline  
Dec 12th, 2007, 07:17 AM
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how do I get info on timeshares for rent?
cdcdebbie is offline  
Dec 12th, 2007, 11:44 AM
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The original poster said that their top priority is the beach. That being said, I know of many people who would rather take their kids to a beach where they don't have to worry about people going topless. When we were in St. Martin we saw many people from Club Orient from the Southern end of the beach doing beach walks in the morning in all their glory. I am not a parent but if I was and if I was considering going there, I would want to know this. It may not bother some people, but there are others who would be upset about it.

Someone recommended Esmerelda which is a very nice resort, but some people enjoy swimming in the nude in the small shared pools there. There are many places that people with kids can go, but I don't think Orient Beach is the best choice. I would not want to have to worry about offending anyone's kids if I wanted to go topless there.

We did see some kids on Orient beach when we went there a few years ago, but in general we saw more kids on other islands. I'm sure that there are a lot of fun things to do with kids in St. Martin. I just think that the OP should know the pros and cons.
travelenthusiast is offline  
Dec 12th, 2007, 12:47 PM
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The 8 and 10 year olds we saw on Orient Beach earlier this month were much more interested in the sand and sea than they were in any of the bodies walking by.
GoAway is offline  
Dec 12th, 2007, 04:37 PM
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My comment that St M/M is not family-friendly (as compared to other destinations) has nothing to do with toplessness.

St M/M has a crime problem and lacks many of the child-friendly activities that parents can find on Grand Cayman, for example.

I just spent some time at Pedro's on Orient ... I like St. Martin, but in my opinion it's not the best choice for the original poster.

Gekko is offline  
Mar 17th, 2009, 04:32 PM
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I wouldn't worry about the topless/nudity on St. Martin. Kids rarely have a problem; its almost always the parents. They will probably be too busy enkoying the great beaches to care.
CarolD1 is offline  

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