From the cruise port, we took a cab to Mullet Bay, one of the lesser-known beaches on St. Maarten. Maho and Orient Bay beaches are probably the two most popular ones, and are usually the ones the organized shore excursions will hit, so they are usually completely filled with tourists. We wanted to unwind and stay away from the crazy crowds, so our cabbie suggested going to Mullet Bay, which is a local favorite. It certainly did not disappoint.
Mullet Bay’s beach is probably my favorite out of all the beaches we hit on that trip, which also means it is my favorite beach on the Caribbean so far. It reminded me very much of Boracay’s white beach in the Philippines, back before it became saturated with hotels, restaurants, and other businesses. The beach is pristine, with almost powdery white sand and transluscent, turquoise water.
As you can see, it also wasn’t crowded.
There was plenty of space to hangout without disturbing any of the other beach-goers, perfect for cute families teaching their kids how to swim, or you know, taking endless selfies.
Welfare Road 130 | Cole Bay
Philipsburg, St. Maarten-St. Martin
And this is Mike’s “I haven’t had decent wifi in a few days, so I’m concentrating on teh internets” face.
The rest of Marigot was fairly empty, other than a small flea market selling clothes and some souvenirs.
Marina Port La Royale
Marigot 97150, St. Maarten-St. Martin
|View from La Croissenterie|
Shopping in St. Maarten
Completely satiated, we headed out to the shopping area for some souvenirs, which was somewhat near the port. As you can see there was a decent view of our ship, and a few beach-goers who apparently did not want to wander too far off the main shopping area.
We’d already had quite a bit of beach time, and it had also gotten pretty gloomy and not at all conducive to hanging out at the beach, so we headed back in to the shopping area and got a few things for friends and family.
We got quite a few things. Some of our purchases were (regrettably) from “The Belgian Chocolate Box” which I will review succinctly by saying the lady was rude, prices were really high (higher than even Jacques Torres here), and the chocolates looked and tasted like they were made by an amateur messing around in their kitchen. The packaging is not even nice. They use Callebaut chocolate, which I guess is at least actually Belgian, so that’s probably the one good thing about it. I’d like to think most people who buy from here (and review it on TripAdvisor) are on some weird vacation high like we were, otherwise we wouldn’t have spent so much money at a place where we were treated so rudely. Suffice it to say I wouldn’t recommend shopping there.
Our other big purchase was from the Sint Maarten Guavaberry Company, which we were completely happy with. We got a few bottles of their guavaberry rum, some guavaberry honey, and some salsa. It’s the perfect place for getting souvenirs because they have a lot of nice gift sets (rum and honey, salsa and rum, etc.) and they’ll even give you some recipe pamphlets for using your purchases. If you get there early enough, they’ll even deliver to your ship, so shopping early might not be a bad idea.
All in all, we had a good time at St. Maarten/St.Martin, and if you wanted to go to the Caribbean and have a comfortable, wonderful time, I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend this island.