On the island of St. Maarten, boredom is a forbidden emotion. Here you can do what comes naturally, live in the moment, explore without limits, and renew your passion for life. From the breathtaking cliffs of Cupecoy. To a beach where planes come so close you can practically touch them. And all the hotels, restaurants, casinos, nightclubs and beaches in between. From the ordinary to the extraordinary, the possibilities are limitless.
Often referred to as the crossroads of the Caribbean, St. Maarten is located at the northern end of the Lesser Antilles, approximately 150 miles southeast of Puerto Rico. The island is just three hours from New York City and two hours forty-five minutes from Miami.
The 37-square-mile island of St. Maarten was first settled by the Arawaks and was discovered by Christopher Columbus on behalf of Spain in 1493. Columbus sighted the island on November 11th, the holy day of St. Martin of Tours, and so named the island after him. For the next 150 years the island was passed between Holland, England, France and Spain.
The old stone forts that guard many of the island's inlets are proof of the island's turbulent past. In 1648 St. Maarten was peacefully divided between Holland and France, and today is the smallest landmass in the world to be shared by two sovereign nations.
Click here to download entry requirements for tourists and visa guide
– A valid passport and a return/continuing ticket.
– A valid passport and a return/continuing ticket. * A certified copy of birth certificate, a photo identification and a return/continuing ticket.
– A "Landing permit" (Permanent Resident Card) with valid passport and return/continuing ticket.
A valid passport and a return/continuing ticket.
Click here for more information
The following categories are exempted from the visa requirement:
– Holders of a valid residence permit for the United States, Canada, the Schengen Area, the United Kingdom, Ireland or Switzerland;
– Holders of a valid residence permit for the French part of St Maarten;
– Holders of a valid residence permit for one of the countries or public bodies (Bonaire, St Eustatius and Saba) of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in the Caribbean;
– The visa requirement applies to all children, regardless of age. They must have their own visa sticker, which means that they must have their own passport. Fees do not need to be paid for visa applications for children under the age of six.
– Even if married to a Dutch national, an alien whose nationality requires him or her to have a visa is still required to apply for a visa and pay the visa application fee.
For more information on requirements for obtaining a Visa click here.
Visit the Dutch Foreign Affairs website for more information.
Traveling the island has been a pleasure in recent years, thanks to major initiatives to improve the infrastructure of St. Maarten, including the construction of new roads, the re-paving of existing roads and the implementation of roundabouts and traffic lights in key locations throughout the island.
Climate: Sub-tropical, with trade winds from the Caribbean Sea.
Temperature: The island has a year-round temperature of approximately 80°F (27°C).
Language: English is the predominate language in the island, however the official language on the St. Maarten side is Dutch, and is officially French on the St. Martin side. French Creole, Spanish, Papiamento and other languages are also spoken.
Population: 41,000 people live on St. Maarten and 36,000 on St. Martin for a combined total of 77,000.
Currency (Dutch St. Maarten): Netherlands Antilles florin (NAf); the official exchange rate is NAf 1.77 for each US$1.00 U.S. dollar.
(French St. Martin): The official monetary unit is the euro.
Electricity (Dutch St. Maarten): 110-volt AC, 60 cycles (same as U.S. & Canada)
(French St. Martin): 220-volt AC, 60 cycles (requires the use of adapters and transformers)
Medical Facilities: St. Maarten Medical Center in Cay Hill and L'hospital General de Gaulle in Marigot, St. Martin. Airlift is available to Puerto Rico and the continental U.S. in case of extreme medical emergency.
Pet Regulations: Animals are admitted temporarily to the island with the following papers: a health certificate dated no more than 10 days before visit and a record of inoculations, including a rabies shot administered no more than 30 days before visit.
Airports: Princess Juliana International Airport (Dutch St. Maarten) services all the international flights. L'Espérance Airport (French St. Martin) services small commuter flights from neighboring islands.
Seaports: Main deep-water port: Dr. A.C. Wathey Cruise & Cargo Facility located in Philipsburg, St. Maarten.
Click here to visit the St. Maarten Marine Trades Association website.
Telephone: Calls to St. Maarten/St. Martin from the U.S. are international calls and require the following country codes:
(Dutch St. Maarten): +721 followed by 54 and the seven-digit local number
(French St. Martin): +590, 590 again followed by the six-digit local number
Time: Atlantic Standard Time, year-around
Entry Requirements: Valid U.S. or Canadian Passport
Driving: International driver's license
Taxis: Available at airports, towns and resort areas
Information (Dutch St. Maarten):
Juancho Yrausquin Blvd. 6
Philipsburg, St. Maarten
The island also offers savvy U.S. planners the added incentive of 100% tax deductibility, thanks to the recently implemented "Tax Information Exchange Agreement" with the United States. The tax initiative allows U.S. tax payers to claim a tax deduction for the expenses associated with a convention held on the Dutch half of the island to the same extent as a convention held in the United States.
Getting to St. Maarten by air or sea is now easier than ever. Just three hours from New York City and four hours from Miami, direct fights are offered by such carriers as Continental, American, U.S. Air, United, Delta, Spirit and Jet Blue. In 2006 a new terminal building was completed at St. Maarten's Princess Juliana International Airport.(SXM). Other recent upgrades to the airport include air traffic control and radar system upgrades and improvements to the taxiways and apron.
For international destinations, there is a departure tax of US$30.00 for those aged two and up. This departure tax may already be included in the airfare of certain carriers. For islands locally, the departure tax is US$10.00. Some islands have made provisions to include the departure tax in your airline ticket.
St. Maarten's A.C. Wathey Pier is ranked among the top ten world cruise ports and destinations. This ultra-modern facility, featuring seaside and boulevard promenades, can accommodate four cruise vessels alongside its 2100 feet cruise pier. A genesis class pier is currently under construction.
Please note our new area code is +721 effective Sep. 30, 2011